- Two recent polls, a Los Angeles Times/Bloomberg poll
and a New York Times/CBS News poll, indicate why Bush is getting away with
impeachable offenses. Half of the US population is incapable of acquiring,
processing and understanding information.
- Much of the problem is the media itself, which serves
as a disinformation agency for the Bush administration. Fox "News"
and right-wing talk radio are the worst, but with propagandistic outlets
setting the standard for truth and patriotism, all of the media is affected
to some degree.
- Despite the media's failure, about half the population
has managed to discern that the US invasion of Iraq has not made them safer
and that the Bush administration's assault on civil liberties is not a
necessary component of the war on terror. The problem, thus, lies with
the absence of due diligence on the part of the other half of the population.
- Consider the New York Times/CBS poll. Sixty-four percent
of the respondents have concerns about losing civil liberties as a result
of anti-terrorism measures put in place by President Bush. Yet, 53 percent
approve of spying without obtaining court warrants "in order to reduce
the threat of terrorism."
- Why does any American think that spying without a warrant
has any more effect in reducing the threat of terrorism than spying with
a warrant? The Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, which Bush is disobeying,
requires the executive to obtain from a secret panel of federal judges
a warrant for spying on Americans. The purpose of the law is to prevent
a president from spying for partisan political reasons. The law permits
the president to spy first (for 72 hours) and then come to the court for
permission. As the court meets in secret, spying without a warrant is no
more effective in reducing the threat of terrorism than spying with a warrant.
- Instead of explaining this basic truth, the media has
played along with the Bush administration and formulated the question as
a trade-off between civil liberties and protection from terrorists. This
formulation is false and nonsensical. Why does the media enable the Bush
administration to escape accountability for illegal behavior by putting
false and misleading choices before the people?
- The LA Times/Bloomberg poll has equally striking anomalies.
Only 43 percent said they approved of Bush's performance as president.
But a majority believe Bush's policies have made the US more secure.
- It is extraordinary that anyone would think Americans
are safer as a result of Bush invading two Muslim countries and constantly
threatening two more with military attack. The invasions and threats have
caused a dramatic swing in Muslim sentiment away from the US. Prior to
Bush's invasion of Iraq, a large majority of Muslims had a favorable opinion
of America. Now only about 5 percent do.
- A number of US commanders in Iraq and many Middle East
experts have told the American public that the three year-old war in Iraq
is serving both to recruit and to train terrorists for al Qaeda, which
has grown many times its former size. Moreover, the US military has concluded
that al Qaeda has succeeded in having its members elected to the new Iraqi
- We have seen similar developments both in Egypt and in
Pakistan. In the recent Egyptian elections, the radical Muslim Brotherhood,
despite being suppressed by the Egyptian government, won a large number
of seats. In Pakistan elements friendly or neutral toward al Qaeda control
about half of the government. In Iraq, Bush's invasion has replaced secular
Sunnis with Islamist Shia allied with Iran.
- And now with the triumph of Hamas in the Palestinian
election, we see the total failure of Bush's Middle Eastern policy. Bush
has succeeded in displacing secular moderates from Middle Eastern governments
and replacing them with Islamic extremists. It boggles the mind that this
disastrous result makes Americans feel safer!
- What does it say for democracy that half of the American
population is unable to draw a rational conclusion from unambiguous facts?
- Americans share this disability with the Bush administration.
According to news reports, the Bush administration is stunned by the election
victory of the radical Islamist Hamas Party, which swept the US-financed
Fatah Party from office. Why is the Bush administration astonished?
- The Bush administration is astonished because it stupidly
believes that hundreds of millions of Muslims should be grateful that the
US has interfered in their internal affairs for 60 years, setting up colonies
and puppet rulers to suppress their aspirations and to achieve, instead,
purposes of the US government.
- Americans need desperately to understand that 95 percent
of all Muslim terrorists in the world were created in the past three years
by Bush's invasion of Iraq.
- Americans need desperately to comprehend that if Bush
attacks Iran and Syria, as he intends, terrorism will explode, and American
civil liberties will disappear into a thirty year war that will bankrupt
the United States.
- The total lack of rationality and competence in the White
House and the inability of half of the US population to acquire and understand
information are far larger threats to Americans than terrorism.
- America has become a rogue nation, flying blind, guided
only by ignorance and hubris. A terrible catastrophe awaits.