Wake me up in 2012, mmmkay?

September 1st, 2008 11:59 pm by Kelly Garbato

Regarding the ongoing [as in, right. now.] police raids on activists protesting the RNC in Minnesota, Glenn Greenwald writes:

So here we have a massive assault led by Federal Government law enforcement agencies on left-wing dissidents and protesters who have committed no acts of violence or illegality whatsoever, preceded by months-long espionage efforts to track what they do. And as extraordinary as that conduct is, more extraordinary is the fact that they have received virtually no attention from the national media and little outcry from anyone. And it’s not difficult to see why. As the recent “overhaul” of the 30-year-old FISA law illustrated — preceded by the endless expansion of surveillance state powers, justified first by the War on Drugs and then the War on Terror — we’ve essentially decided that we want our Government to spy on us without limits. There is literally no police power that the state can exercise that will cause much protest from the political and media class and, therefore, from the citizenry.

Beyond that, there is a widespread sense that the targets of these raids deserve what they get, even if nothing they’ve done is remotely illegal. We love to proclaim how much we cherish our “freedoms” in the abstract, but we despise those who actually exercise them. The Constitution, right in the very First Amendment, protects free speech and free assembly precisely because those liberties are central to a healthy republic — but we’ve decided that anyone who would actually express truly dissident views or do anything other than sit meekly and quietly in their homes are dirty trouble-makers up to no good, and it’s therefore probably for the best if our Government keeps them in check, spies on them, even gets a little rough with them.

After all, if you don’t want the FBI spying on you, or the Police surrounding and then invading your home with rifles and seizing your computers, there’s a very simple solution: don’t protest the Government. Just sit quietly in your house and mind your own business. That way, the Government will have no reason to monitor what you say and feel the need to intimidate you by invading your home. Anyone who decides to protest — especially with something as unruly and disrespectful as an unauthorized street march — gets what they deserve.

Go check out the whole piece; it’s a must read, and well worth the forced advertising. And afterwards, since you’ve already suffered through the latest Toyota commercial, scroll through for Glenn’s most recent updates. It’s fucking mind-boggling, the crimes we allow our government to perpetrate against its citizens.

And if you think Obama will save you, think again. Remember, the man – giddy with the anticipation of unchecked presidential powers – voted in favor of FISA. On a more global level, the DNC also saw police repression and brutality against American citizens.

All of which is doubly infuriating after all the self-serving, racist/xenophobic hand-wringing over China’s civil liberties violations during the Olympics, as Glenn rightfully points out.

Be Sociable, Share!

Filed under , , , ,

Leave a Reply