by Bo Filter
Common Ground : Archive : September 2004
To reaffirm hegemony is nothing new in history, but worse, a perpetual practice of entrenched aristocracies. In case anyone fails to understand which side of the fence Bush sits, Moore shows televised footage of Bush bragging amongst the elite that he is proud to be one of them. Throughout history, aristocracies have used all forms of guile to maintain their position of privilege.
Pretexts, by definition, galvanize public support, and they work specifically because the masses are unwilling to forego their blind faith in their leaders, rejecting the idea, as preposterous, that they, themselves, could be tricked into waging a war of aggression. To this day, most people do not believe that the sinking of the Lusitania in 1916 was used to galvanize US support to enter World War I. Nor do they believe that Pearl Harbor was put deliberately in danger by an act of war, the prior blockading of the Strait of Malacca, cutting off Japan from its crucial supply of oil. Hitler burned down the Reichstag in a move to declare Marshall law and close down democracy, what the new Patriot Act is positioned to do in the States.
People tragically forget that democracy is anathema to aristocracy. Rulers need followers and whipping the masses into war fever for imperial purposes is as old as Caesar: “Beware the leader who bangs the drums of war in order to whip the citizenry into a patriotic fervor, for patriotism is indeed a double-edged sword. It both emboldens the blood, just as it narrows the mind. And when the drums of war have reached a fever pitch and the blood boils with hate and the mind has closed, the leader will have no need in seizing the rights of the citizenry. Rather, the citizenry, infused with fear and blinded by patriotism, will offer up all of their rights unto the leader and gladly so. How do I know? For this is what I have done. And I am Caesar.”
In the recent past, leaders still bragged about the success of their manipulations. At the Nuremberg trials, Hermann Goering explained: “ … the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is to tell them they are being attacked, and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger.” Detractors want us to believe that such trickery is all in the past. Instead, stealth has gone underground. With today’s $1 billion a year media spin corporations, no one can admit to this, like the $10 million sell-job of the first Gulf war to the US public by faking the event of Iraqi soldiers taking children out of incubators and leaving them on the floor to die. This was spun so convincingly by the tearful daughter of a Kuwaiti ambassador, and sponsored by the Republican Party which gave the public relations contract to Hill and Knowlton, headquartered in the same building in Washington. With 9/11, Bush could play a trump card, “You’re either with us or you’re with the terrorists.” Quickly, the Patriot Act memorializes this affront on open democratic discussion. For follow-up, the corporate media spin constantly conditions the public to equate dissent with treason, creating two distinct camps of “good versus evil” in the US.
According to ancient class warfare, the elite must divide the people against each other, arming the right-wing supporters of monarchy to suppress the masses. The historical record of the US aristocracy is no different. In every US elite-sponsored totalitarian country, critics and protesters are massacred, but first a national emergency is customarily declared with a clause that elections be postponed indefinitely. This is why an alleged Bin Laden attack is imminent. A finely tuned pretext will see Bush in the White House come January. The one thing that could stop him is that the public somehow starts to draw the connections between Bush and the Saudi elite. Hats off to Michael Moore for doing his part.
Bo Filter is author of the newly released book: The Cause of Wars and Aggression