As NSA whistle-blower Edward Snowden continues his escape from the hands of United States government officials abroad — he left Hong Kong for Moscow on Sunday reports say — news is continuing to leak about possible foul play in the auto accident that killed Rolling Stone journalist Michael Hastings. One can read the article here. (No need to rehash the details of the story here). Hastings is a hardcore journalist. Blew the lid off of several important stories over the years. He was being investigated by the FBI and at the same time was researching another explosive story about the government evidently; he sent a blind-copy broadcast email out to his friends and family alerting them to these facts and warning them that they would probably be questioned by the FBI in regards to him. Some believe the email itself to be suspicious, that perhaps Hastings didn’t really send it. Others believe that it was he who sent it but that the panic in his tone of the email and the fact that he died a few hours after sending it is fishy.
Earlier today we were catching up on the latest events related to Edward Snowden. Sunday’s news shows were primarily quiet on the issue, except for the now-repugnant Meet the Press (David Gregory is destroying the once admirable benchmark Sunday news show formerly hosted by Tim Russert). Gregory spoke about Snowden as if he were a criminal and a fugitive, as if he had committed some kind of massive terrorist plot that killed hundreds of people — no different than how the United States government is talking about and handling the Snowden leak.
At this point we expect that from the United States government (not everyone who works for it, but a seemingly large majority of them); but not from journalists. I am not sure if one could call Gregory a “journalist” per se. He’s more of a gossip monger and media whore for U.S. elected officials. But it was still surprising how willing he was to hang Snowden out to dry without any benefit of the doubt. Worse yet was Gregory’s handling of his interview with fellow journalist, The Guardian reporter Glenn Greenwald. On live TV in front of potentially millions of viewers Gregory asked Greenwald whether he believed that he should be prosecuted “to the extent that you aided and abetted” Snowden.
It was a shocking moment for anyone who understands what is happening in the United States at this time when it comes to American government tyranny and their broad-sweeping and consistent moves to lull citizens into thoughtless zombies with little or no rights. Gregory’s question was shamelessly less a question and more of a statement — a tactic he uses frequently in order to sneak his opinion into what should be objective journalistic dialogue; it was asinine to begin with because what person in their right mind would answer in the affirmative to such a question? “Yes David, I believe I should be prosecuted for aiding and abetting a criminal. In fact that’s why I’ve come on your show, to turn myself in.” So clearly David Gregory knew what the answer was going to be. The problem is he should never have asked the question. Especially now that even mainstream journalists in America are coming under attack so blatantly and on such a constant basis by the federal government for still attempting to do their job.
[It should be pointed out that it isn’t the media who is doing something wrong as of late by reporting on issues they suspect to be possibly illegal or harmful to the citizens or the republic by the current American government. The fact that they do not agree with what the government is doing or wants to do is what’s at issue. The government is trying to brand anyone in the media who leans in a different direction as being partisan, or illegitimate or even criminal. They are doing the same thing with American citizens now too. But it isn’t the job of the media nor the people to agree with or approve of what the government does. In fact some might argue that our mandate is the exact opposite of that, to keep the government in check. Unfortunately the current government of the United States no longer seems to recognize that they work FOR the people. The set up is quite ominous now. There is a strong sense of fear in the air now about not appearing too opposed to or critical of this particular White House administration. As if it’s nearly a matter of life or death. The media for their part is still out there battling it out trying to do their job. At least some of them are. Fewer and fewer it seems.]
And so it is now. Today is June 24th. The year is 2013. It doesn’t FEEL like the United States of America anymore. There is a palpable sense of worry and fear in the air among most people regarding the American government. As if we are in the throes of breathing our last breaths before some major final calamity. There is something terrifying and ominous about the sitting U.S. president Barack Hussein Obama. It’s not that people wish Mitt Romney were elected… (Republicans still do surely; but that isn’t what’s in the air.) It’s more like this strange dark-hearted mystery character that no one really knew too much about is starting to show his true colors… a suspicious evil is slowly leaking from his pores and Americans can sense it. One might say it’s a frightening unconscious awareness of just how wrong America got it when they jubilantly elected the man five years ago. But unfortunately it’s not just a vibrational unconscious fear at play.
There are very specific and overt reasons for America’s pessimism and quick about-face in regards to Obama. There are so many heinous and egregious actions being taken by him and his administration both here at home and all over the globe that it’s erased any sense of hope or positivity the country once felt when he was first elected a few years ago. Unmanned drone strikes kill inumerable people all over the world without anyone knowing except the government or the people doing the killing. Along with them, other more sinister “targeted assassinations” are also being carried out now on a regular basis in what is being called “America’s Dirty Wars” in some fifty countries around the world. No congressional approval or declaration of war is necessary anymore. Obama writes a name on a piece of paper and a whole village in Yemen or Pakistan is bombed overnight, killing the man for suspected “terrorism” or even just hate-speech without an arrest or a trial AND countless innocent civilians along with him.
It may sound outrageous, like some movie plot about a dystopian nightmare of some future fascist world, but it’s happening now. And it’s happening on a regular basis, everyday. Add to it the government’s continued attack on privacy and civil liberties — more now under the Obama administration than under the Bush/Cheney regime, their consistent attacks on media outlets, wire-tapping, giant spying programs that log ALL American citizens’ call records and internet usage without their knowledge, more arrests for minor drug possession than any other sitting president, continued torture and force feeding of prisoners in Guantanamo Bay, government support and protection for giant evil monoliths such as Monsanto despite loud protests by the majority of the people, and a slow and steady devastation of the air and water from fracking by big oil companies due to a lack of regulation and a complete disregard for environmental protection laws already on the books. On and on it goes.
This is just a random list off the top of one person’s head. With some study and research by a more knowledgeable person I am sure one would quickly become aware of many more countless harmful activities that are taking place that are not in the best interest of the American people. Unfortunately we’re not even discussing the more sinister conspiratorial issues that are at the heart of America’s downward spiral into indebtedness and decrepitude here. These are just the day to day news headlines that we live with on a daily basis now. And that’s what makes it so damn sad. Bush was scary. No one will argue with that. At least his agenda was. But this is more than scary. It’s terrifying. And sad. It feels as though America has quickly fallen into the hands of some kind of wicked police state overnight without our knowing.
Perhaps the worst part of it is that it appears that every time someone steps up to speak up or speak out against the U.S. government in today’s world they mysteriously die of some odd unnatural causes. Or they are hunted down like a fugitive and imprisoned and never heard from again. It’s making the Bush/Cheney years start to feel like the good old days. And that is a frightening prospect. If only it didn’t feel so true.