How many sides does Democracy have?
Democracy has one side—The People. Anyone else is just a job applicant.Joyce Bowen
I was around when this guy was. I was too little to have any sort of opinion about him.
He was long gone by the time I hit my teens. The Vietnam War was fulminating and percolating. Eisenhower was a soldier’s soldier, and I hated him for his uniform. I hated that my friends were being drafted into a war being fought for resources and riches, and that they were losing their lives because of it.
Democracy! was the cry but it was a lie and we all knew it as young men died. Brutal videos played on nightly TV, bringing home the realities of war. Visual bedtime stories showed bodies heaped in piles bringing the reality of death closer and it stung.
Napalm Girl Photo-The Real Story!
Watching the above video brings back the pain of those years—the many letters I wrote to my high-school, soldier friends—the nightly news broadcasts—the horror. Tears are still drawn from my eyes—they are running now.
Key in my mind was poor Dwight. I think I always blamed him in the recesses of my mind. He was a perfect target.
Until I saw the meme at the forefront of this article depicting his thoughts on something I’ve always held dear—Freedom.
My opinion has grown, aged, and more. Instead of listening I looked, searched, and studied.
He warned us in his farewell speech so long ago. I suspect he had no idea how far it would go.
Tax rates on the wealthy were as high as 90%. The country ran well—roads were maintained and the government protected the people. Wages were high enough on which families could thrive. Everything was closed on Sunday. It was a day of rest, family, and prayer.
Forgive me, Dwight. I was wrong about you.
We the People stood strong with the support of our government.
But things have changed…
Eisenhower’s farewell address was the final public speech of Dwight D. Eisenhower as the 34th President of the United States, delivered in a television broadcast on January 17, 1961.
Relevant Excerpt From Eisenhower’s Speech:
“…A VITAL ELEMENT in keeping the peace is our military establishment. Our arms must be mighty, ready for instant action, so that no potential aggressor may be tempted to risk his own destruction.
OUR MILITARY ORGANIZATION today bears little resemblance to that known by any of my predecessors in peacetime, or indeed by the fighting men of World War II or Korea. UNTIL THE LATEST of our world conflicts, the United States had no armaments industry. AMERICAN MAKERS of plowshares could, with time and as required, make swords as well.
But now we can no longer risk emergency improvisation of national defense; we have been compelled to create a permanent armaments industry of vast proportions. Added to this, three and a half million men and women are directly engaged in the defense establishment.
WE ANNUALLY spend on military security more than the net income of all United States Corporations. THIS CONJUNCTION of an immense military establishment and a large arms industry is new in the American experience.
The total influence – economic, political, even spiritual – Is felt in every city, every Statehouse, every office of the Federal government. We recognize the imperative need for this development.
Yet we must not fail to comprehend its grave implications. Our toil, resources, and livelihood are all involved; so is the very structure of our society.
IN THE COUNCILS of government, we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military-industrial complex. The potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists and will persist.
WE MUST NEVER let the weight of this combination endanger our liberties or democratic processes. We should take nothing for granted.
Only an alert and knowledgeable citizenry can compel the proper meshing of the huge industrial and military machinery of defense with our peaceful methods and goals so that security and liberty may prosper together. AKIN TO, and largely responsible for the sweeping changes in our industrial-military posture has been the technological revolution during recent decades.
IN THIS REVOLUTION, research has become central; it also becomes more formalized, complex, and costly. A steadily increasing share is conducted for, by, or at the direction of, the Federal government.
TODAY, the solitary inventor, tinkering in his shop, has been overshadowed by task forces of scientists in laboratories and testing fields.
In the same fashion, the free university, historically the fountainhead of free new ^ ideas and scientific discovery, has experienced a revolution in the conduct of research. Partly because of the huge great costs involved, a government contract becomes, virtually, a substitute for intellectual curiosity.
For every old blackboard, there are now hundreds of new electronic computers.
THE PROSPECT of domination of the nation’s scholars by Federal employment, project allocations, and the power of money is ever-present — and is gravely to be regarded….”
I bet Eisenhower never knew how accurate his prophecies were.
“Only an alert and knowledgeable citizenry can compel the proper meshing of the huge industrial and military machinery of defense with our peaceful methods and goals so that security and liberty may prosper together. “
Having experienced nigh on to 7 decades I see we’ve done nothing but nap. I’ve seen the transitions–the changes… and bad ones at that.
There is a meme with a thought by Phillip K. Dick
Now note Dick does not say “the definition” of words. He says “the meaning” of words.
Definitions may remain the same, but meanings can surreptitiously change.
Words like ‘health,’ ‘care,’ ‘safe,’ bear no resemblance to bygone days. Hell—the buggers doling out such things nearly killed me. I see those words and run the other way.
Much of our conditioning has been based on the teachings of Freud’s nephew, Edward Bernays.
: Edward Bernays: on Propaganda and Public Relations::
After watching this the first time, I walked away and tried to wipe it from my mind. But it haunted me for over a year, and I resolved to find it. I remembered no names, but I never forgot that old man’s face. In a conversation with a new acquaintance, I mentioned the concept, and he knew exactly of whom I was speaking.
Yea, yea, yea–we all want to believe we are different. We are the same enough to be trained like circus animals. We have books on psychology outlining pathological human behaviors. [DSM] Normal behaviors are normal behaviors and we all have them. This idea that we are all unique is hogwash.
So where am I going with all this? Eisenhower’s warning, Dick’s caution and this:
Adolf Hitler (left) and Benito Mussolini in a car, saluting the crowd that gathered along the thoroughfare Corso Vittorio Emanuele in Rome, in May 1938
What to Know About the Origins of Fascism’s Brutal Ideology
Strange—people always call Hitler a socialist.
I stood with the Blue side most of my life [as an Independent] but noticed distinct changes post 2010. I even told a good friend of mine who always backed the other guys that he should switch sides because it seemed my side was becoming more brutal. He was raised in a party; I was not. I occasionally switch-hitted.
Change is constant, and it is the only universal constant to my way of thinking.
What I see in government today bears no resemblance to what it was in the past. It has changed in dangerous ways. It has been slow and insidious but can no longer be denied.
The names remain the same, but their meanings have changed. Governments all over the world are stealing our democracies, and most are applauding them for it. [New Zealand, Australia, France, and England are stripping human rights. England has repealed its 1689 Bill of Rights] And those who are applauding those measures? Damn—the guy isn’t even a Brit.
Many wonder how Hitler did it and punished the German people post WorldWar II for their deviancies. But we are doing the very same things and being herded into the same activities. Hilter herded the Jews into enclosures by asserting they carried typhus. Those of us who are already suffering injuries from pharmaceutical products and who fear death-by-vaccination will be herded into enclosures by asserting we are COVID carriers. [but there is no test; there is no testthereisnotest, therisno…]
That is not the democracy I grew up with… Is it yours?
Where’s Eisenhower when you need him?
Copyright 2020 by Joyce Bowen