Thursday, January 3, 2008

Land of the free

Great article from Tom Engelhardt on Bush's legacy:

This is what "homeland security" means in the United States today. It means putting your country in full lockdown mode. It means the snarl at the border, the nasty comment in the waiting room, the dirty cell, the handcuffs, even the chains. It means being humiliated. It means a thorough lack of modulation or moderation. Arriving here now always threatens to be a "tempest-tost" experience whether you are a citizen, a semi-official visitor, or a foreign tourist. (After all, even Sen. Ted Kennedy found himself repeatedly on a no-fly list without adequate explanation.) Think of these three cases as snapshots from the borders of a country in which the presumption of innocence is slowly being drained of all meaning.
Go read the whole thing. It's hard to imagine what a president who actually wanted to destroy America would do that Bush hasn't.


T said...

Whoa. Overwhelming, but not surprising. And closer to home, Jenny's grandmother was harassed on her way to Hawaii for not taking off her "sweater," which was actually a shirt with a zipper. It wasn't until she actually did unzip it, revealing nothing but her bra, that they let her go.


Mike said...

381 days, 23 hours, 48 minutes

Orion said...

Can't help but reflect on FDR's immortal words "we have nothing to fear...but fear itself" and how this observation is so germane today... Fear can cause people to tolerate the gradual erosion of their freedom.

Rob said...

Oh, T, don't get me started about airport security. One day I'm going to get myself calmed down enough to write a coherent blog post that.

And Mike, the countdown is only relevant if the next election is free and fair and if GWB doesn't find an excuse to postpone or cancel it. And a whole hell of a lot can happen in a year besides. I won't rest easy till I see the odious little bugger get bundled into his bulletproof limousine for the last time and physically leave the White House.

O, there's also Franklin: "Those who would give up Essential Liberty to purchase a little Temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety."

hsempl said...

oh, that explains why when i offered to take my sweatshirt off (hey, i'm easy) the security guy giggled (yes, really) and said that it didn't look like i had much on under there (i did of course; both a bra and a shirt! why is it that i never look like i'm wearing a bra nor make up (back when i used to)) and that they didn't require that much revelation.

did i have a point?