by Roderick T. Beaman
The Fourth of July is the second of the annual roundup of farces that we feed ourselves to feel good about the country. The cycle starts with the May celebration called Memorial Day and ends with the November installment, originally Armistice Day, marking the end of World War I, now called Veterans’ Day.
In all three, the politicians trot out and mouth their clichés about those who fought for our freedoms and now are fighting for them in far off places in Asia and around the world. They’re all lies.
There can be no doubt that our soldiers have fought valiantly for the government of this country, as distinct from the country and its ideals themselves, but in the various conflicts in our history, our freedoms have truly been in danger only once from external sources, during The War of 1812, and that was strictly due to our ill-advised, bumbling entrance into the first of our declared wars.
The hawks of that day had screamed for an engagement with the British. In their scenario, the war would be over in three months and we would be welcomed as liberators by an invasion of Canada which would then be annexed.
Instead, the Canadians didn’t roll out any welcome mats and the British nearly destroyed our infant navy and armies. Andrew Jackson’s vaunted victory at New Orleans actually came after the war was over. The British burned The White House, The Capitol and other federal buildings and only the strict orders of British Major General Robert Ross prevented what could have a sacking of Washington, D.C., a la Rome (now guys, please try not to let that bring a gleam to your eyes; it’s tempting, I know but please, some discretion) and had they not initially had the distraction of a war against Napoleon’s Sixth Coalition, they might have succeeded in bringing their former colonies back under their rule.
Today, we’re still fighting a war in Afghanistan, a country that isn’t a nation but a bundle of many, that have been fighting each other for centuries and only occasionally band together to fight anyone stupid enough to think they can conquer the place. They’ve chewed up and spit out invaders since the time of Alexander the Great and bankrupted many in the process, most recently the Soviet Union. We’ll likely be the next victims; that conflict has us mired just like it did our predecessors.
Down Main Streets and on town squares across this country, aging veterans of our various conflicts, many with broken bodies and minds, paraded and basked in belated limelights as the crowds applauded them. They waved back and reveled in the adulation, much of it long postponed from times when they were often vilified as child-killers. The criminal politicians who sent them into those hells took center stage. They should have been shackled. I have rarely watched these fiascoes and certainly didn’t this year as this smarmiest of shams of a president heaped praise on the marks he’s scammed.
It’s been like clockwork, since The War of 1812, that every twenty years or so we have subjected another generation to these horror shows that we dress up in the name of defending our freedoms. Not one has deserved the title. If anything, they have all been committed to the imposition of tyranny of some sort.
Born in 1944, I remember, over the years, marveling at how Germany and Japan had gone from being our blood enemies to our allies. Oh, they must have seen the light was what we swallowed, hook, line and sinker.
In rapid succession, we’ve been snookered with updated versions of ‘we should have stopped Hitler at the Rhine (or was it Münich?)’ which got us into Korea and Viet-Nam. For Grenada, Ronald Reagan invoked an obscure treaty while in Iraq the first time when they transformed an erstwhile ally into an enemy.
For Afghanistan, they cited September 11 while producing no credible evidence for it. Adolf Hitler bellowed, “Poland hat mit bomben gesprachen,” with about as much evidence as we had for this atrocity and we hanged and imprisoned many in the German high command after the war for their similar aggressive war. After the Munich trials, Winston Churchill remarked that henceforth it will be a good thing to be on the winning side No war crimes tribunals have been convened for what we’ve done.
(Now please, gentle reader, recall that Korea wasn’t a war at all; it was a ‘police action’ as Harry Truman called it and even though an estimated million people died, it was still only a police action. I doubt that many Korean families with war dead discerned the distinction nor that many Americans did either. Truman took the unprecedented action of a full commitment of American troops without even consulting Congress which was in session! As usual, Congress sat on its hands when as its power was poached. If it had any gumption, it would have impeached him but Harry Truman went on to become a hero to the incipient neo-con movement being spearheaded by Barry Goldwater and William F. Buckley, Jr.)
So, today the political battles center on the degree of violation the Constitution. It might just as well not exist. Nancy Pelosi even laughed in astonishment when someone questioned the constitutionality of the Affordable Insurance Act, A.K.A. Obamacare. This is the status of things today.
We now have in The White House a man who must believe that he was elected dictator. This has been strengthened with the Supreme Court decision on his Obamacare that was revealed on June 28; ironic; a joke of a decision rendered just six days before an annual joke.
That decision has effectively rendered the idea of an American constitutionally limited federal government defunct. It no longer exists. In collaboration, Obama, his henchmen and Congress, all know there is no limit to the power of the federal government and they will all proceed accordingly, Republicrats and Democommies. It is no longer simply possible to declare any action illegal. It is now possible to declare any inaction illegal. The federal government can order anyone to do anything it wants. When you combine this catastrophe of a Supreme Court decision with recent Patriot Acts and The National Defense Authorization Act, we have no constitutional guarantees to our personal freedom either.
The United States of America ceased to exist on June 28, 2012. I refuse to recite The Pledge of Allegiance (which I have been very suspicious of for a long time). I refuse to sing the national anthem, a reworded saloon hall chantey, nor stand in the presence of any government official. They all represent delusions and I refuse to participate in delusions.
Dr. Roderick T. Beaman is an osteopathic family physician practicing in Jacksonville, Florida. Born in New York City, he attended New York University as an undergraduate. A recipient of a 2003 Ron Paul Liberty in Media Award, he has had dreams (delusions?) of becoming a writer. He has written a novel that he has given up hope of ever getting published and so has made it available for the asking through TheFreedomBeam@comcast.net.