Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Many years ago I lived in a small Banana Republic......

And I might point out it came with the best of intentions. First you over throw a vile, pedophile of a dictator whose second in command makes the Marquis de Sade look like a fluffy bunny . Then you try to institute democracy. In a country with a 89% illiteracy rate and years under a dictatorship to where most of the people remember nothing else, instituting a democracy is impossible. No one knew that. But in the process, I learned how a dictatorship and a totalitarian government comes into being. It is an interesting, slow, insidious process.

I bet you thought it happened over night. Nope. Someone might take over in a coup overnight, but you don't get the people to willing submit that quickly. It takes time. Let me give you what I learned along with some parallels you are not going to like, but hey, that's your problem now. You are at Step 5.

The first step is to get people to willing give up their freedom for protection. You need to convince them of either an enemy (in this island nation's world, it was a nearby island that might invade at any moment) to focus on or general lawlessness. Now, in this case, no one ever bothered to ask why this nation would invade or how exactly they would get there. Since they were relatively unknown to the island's people, they just assumed they were all blood thirsty villains. Parallel: 9/11 The actions of a small group of people are magnified into the invasion of 3 separate countries and in the process serves as the biggest recruitment drive in the Taliban's history. They had trouble getting people to notice them before that point much let alone, join.

Once people become used to searches (airport and private security), surveillance (traffic cameras: in the name of safety) and invasion of their privacy (all communications in the workplace being monitored) in the name of security, you move on to step 2. Step 2 is convincing people they will be punished for the actions of a few. This starts innocently with something like drug testing to get a job.

Now you might have said, whoa, I don't want to be working with druggies. Let me ask you, do you need to take a breath-a-lizer test each morning on the job? No. That's because alcohol is an "accepted" drug and yet it impairs a person just as successfully as pot or any number of drugs. Not only that, but if the person can produce a prescription for the "drug" they can have the job whereas the person without the prescription can't have the job. Are you beginning to see how really silly this whole thing is? You are getting no security or added safety, just a forfeiture of your rights and false sense of security and safety (which may prove to be a lot more dangerous). The person next to you can have a coffee mug full of whiskey they are chugging and be gainfully employed whereas the person who smoked a joint at home in his off hours last week is denied a job and welfare. Yes, it is that simple.

Step 3 is getting the people to do the work for you. You get them to inform on each other. The first step is allowing anonymous complaints. Most municipalities are already doing that. Anyone can call building and zoning and claim your grass is a half an inch too high and a city inspector has to come out to your house and investigate the complaint. Since no one knows who filed the complaint, fear and suspicion abound. You don't want to know your neighbors because one of them is causing you all manner of problems and I guarantee, after the inspector drives all the way out to your property, he/she is going to find something, somewhere wrong and it may not even be on your property. Most corporations permit anonymous whistle blowing as long as it isn't about their activities.

Step 4 is plain and simple fear. Now you don't trust those demons from the other country and your next door neighbors and really don't trust the guy in the cubicle next to you. You are in a permanent state of stress and you are now isolated. Isolated people have no power. They can't organize because they are afraid of each other.

And, there is a Step 5 and you really aren't going to like this one. You are already being bodily searched and Xrayed at every opportunity to make certain grandma doesn't have a bomb in her diaper. You submit to drug testing just to make a dollar or get that welfare check you need (of course you have to be able to afford the drug testing in the first place but that is beside the point and have transportation to get to the doctor and the lab.) just to feed your kid. You are scared to death to let anything in your yard or house look different from everyone else's because your neighbors are watching and turning you in to the authorities. You are being monitored and fined by traffic cameras with no due process or even a human involved. You have a GPS in your phone telling anyone who hacks into the system where you are 24/7. Your purchases are tracked by "frequent buyer cards" and even your credit card company. And then to add insult to injury, you send your kids to school where they discover a quick and cheap way to get back at mommy and daddy for not letting them stay up late. They drop by the couselors' office (the door is always open and the counselor is friendly and youthful and understands) and they tell them you are not "patriotic enough". Maybe you forgot your flag lapel pin that week. It doesn't matter, you just bought yourself a quick trip to the local detention facility without doing anything and guess what, you are ALONE. No one is coming to help you. You may be the person who turned them in. You may be a plant in the Condo. You may be the problem at work. You are the druggie even if you never took an aspirin in your life. You are now the enemy and they will vilify and stone you to death to prove their patriotism. STEP 5 IS A REAL BITCH AND SHE'S RABID.
Guess what friends! You are already there and you welcomed it. Test those mythical welfare druggies so they don't get OUR MONEY.
Let's all forget they paid taxes, too.
Let's all forget there are laws in place to deal with them right now.
Let's all forget that the real welfare cheats aren't druggies because it takes a clear head to run a scam now-a-days with computers cross checking everything.
And while we are at it, let's all forget that Reagan emptied the mental hospitals so the insurance companies didn't have to pay for people getting the care they needed. Let's all forget he made it impossible to get the needed medications because if you were out of the hospital you obviously were functional and now couldn't get the money to buy your meds. Of course, you got out the door because you were clear headed on the meds you now can't afford.
Let's all forget the thousands of veterans who arrived home from Viet Nam addicted to drugs and now get thrown off the welfare roles. There is no help available for rehab unless you can afford Betty Ford. Try that on Welfare.
 Let's all forget the thousand of veterans coming home each year in pain who wind up self medicating because they are forced to take an honourable discharge in place of a medical discharge or they can die in a VA hospital. Those are the choices. Agent Orange wasn't dangerous so we sprayed our troops with it. It doesn't cause neurological damage and pain. The government told us so.
They pulled that one on my father in the Korean War. Florida so aggravated his asthma during basic training, he was suffocating. So my mother got a call from his VA room mates to come and get him while she could. She rode a train, by herself, to Tampa where she found him unable to get out of bed and the CO sitting there with a clipboard. Either he signed the papers for an honourable discharge or they let him die in that filthy bed, no air conditioning and mosquitoes by the thousands. The men in the ward took up a collection to pay for his ticket to PA on the train and they managed to get him in a sleeper car so the conductor wouldn't think he had TB and throw them off. Oh yes, my friends, our country treats its veterans really well. So plaster that yellow ribbon on your profile because you support our troops as long as they are overseas.....when they get home, well they are the filthy druggies in the woods without jobs and medical care you want shipped off so you don't have to look at them.
Don't forget, I used to treat them. I know.
Now, they can't get a job and they are going off the welfare rolls really fast with drug testing. But, it's so easy to hate those druggies that are robbing us blind and forget they are people, with real stories and once they had real lives just like you and me. That is, before they grew horns and became disposable.

Let me humbly suggest you look carefully in the mirror each morning because you never know when you are going to be next. Drug tests aren't fool proof. They produce, gasp, FALSE POSITIVES. Once you get one, you are labeled forever. It will propagate through every government system. It won't matter how many times or years you test negative. That ONE POSITIVE is on your record, forever. And by-the-way, I will be laughing my cute little ass off. Hey, 10 years working in a psychiatric office, I know all about those false positives. They are more common than you think and could be as simple as the muffin you ate for breakfast last week. It's a common flavoring in cereal, bread and cookies.
I got a false positive at Walmart because my body temperature in a toasty 96 degrees which trips the urine test because my urine is just as cold. I had to get a blood test. I guarantee you, the government isn't going to give you a blood test to prove your innocence. If I hadn't had a sterling resume with Fortune 500 companies on it, medical experience and two degrees (and been willing to work for minimum wage), I wouldn't have gotten that blood test, either.
So, keep thinking about those welfare druggies and the 50% of the prison population that is druggies (the other half is illegal immigrants) and waving that flag and those little signs, because your turn is coming up sooner than you think.
How much do you trust the government? They are the testers.....

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