Wednesday, 11 May 2011

SEAL of Dishonor

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“They’re America’s quietest killers,” Newsweek gushes under the headline, “The Coolest Guys in the World.” ABC News calls them “the best of the best” who “toil in the dark of night, tasked with the most daring, dangerous and important missions.” And no encomium to the State’s minions would be complete without an enthusiastic endorsement from the New York Times: Navy SEALS, particularly the notorious Team 6 whom the Feds allege to have murdered Osama bin Laden, are “America’s Jedi knights: the elite of the elite, an all-star team of commandos.”

So all you young’uns yearning to make your mark, here’s how: find an unarmed man a few birthdays shy of membership in AARP and shoot him.

Of course, to guarantee that you land on Newsweek’s cover rather than in jail, your victim must embody evil, at least according to the United States’ government (curiously, it never so categorizes its own politicians and bureaucrats, though they’re the ones starting the wars). And while pulling the trigger, disguise yourself in such intimidating clothing and accouterments you no longer look human. 

In fact, perhaps you no longer are.

Governments are good at nothing beyond killing, thieving and lying. But they always excel at those. To create the killers and thieves they need, they cynically manipulate man’s nature as well as some of his highest aspirations.

Many of us need to see the world in black and white, with heroes and villains and the morality play of good vs. evil. We want to fight the ancient battle; we dream of slaying dragons and finding the cure for cancer, rescuing the innocent and vanquishing bad guys. We long to be heroes.

That itch seems to goad more men than women — and it positively obsesses some guys. Women admire the knight in shining armor who pulls their kids from the burning SUV; they usually don’t fantasize about saving the kids themselves. But men crave the opportunity to prove themselves, to battle impossible odds and triumph. 

That’s when Our Rulers swoop in. 

First, they obliterate most opportunities for such drama by “securing” our world, destroying all risk and, with it, adventure. Children no longer need a strong daddy to comfort them when they fall off their bicycles because laws force them to wear helmets. And why would Atticus Finch save the town from a mad dog when every village and suburb robs its citizens to pay a bureaucracy for that? Besides, it’s illegal to fire weapons within municipal limits. 

Along with this stultifying safety goes the feminization of society, institutions, customs, even mentality. Women are literally everywhere: government has made it illegal to exclude them — except from itself. The “General Requirements” for the Navy SEALS insist in surprisingly clear language that “applicants must … be male.”

Not only do women swagger through the locker room or belly up to the bar so long as it isn’t on a SEALS base, but government glorifies the mental and emotional weakness long considered feminine. It discourages — and often outlaws — physical and moral courage, initiative, independence, and other traditionally “masculine” attributes in favor of childish, feminine ones. Our Rulers want us gullible, utterly submissive, and scared of everything all the time so that we beg them for protection rather than trusting ourselves. Non-governmental thief breaking into your home? Don’t grab a pistol: call 911. Creep coming on to your wife in the mall? Don’t confront him: tattle to the cops. Thugs at school rough up your son? Don’t teach him a knock-out punch: call the principal, who suggests a levy on the next ballot for an anti-bullying curriculum.

Thanks to government’s encroachment on our lives and society, there’s almost nowhere left for men to be men, nowhere for a boy to fulfill that deep-seated, God-given thirst for heroism, nowhere to pit his brains and brawn against evil and win.

Except in one of government’s endless battalions of bullies and enforcers. Indeed, we might almost say that government monopolizes manliness: it prohibits masculinity except when quashing its enemies and dissidents. Where’s the Justice Department and its trust-busters when you need ‘em?

Whether it’s cops or the FBI, the Marines or the CIA, the Secret Service or the Navy SEALS, government recruits its lackeys by playing on the itch for adventure and recognition as a hero. And the virtues it condemns in citizens it encourages and exploits here: Navy SEALS, their website brags, are “mentally sharp, mature, and resilient.” They are “motivated, intelligent, self-starters who embody honor, courage, and commitment.” Ah, but to what? 

One SEAL recalled that as a child, “his big fears were that he’d ‘been born at the wrong time’ — that ‘the time for heroes’ might have passed — and that he might miss his ‘ticket to a meaningful life.’ He … won a Rhodes scholarship to Oxford and earned a Ph.D.,” then “became an ‘advocate for using power, where necessary, to protect the weak, to end ethnic cleansing, to end genocide’…” Odd that a Rhodes Scholar doesn’t identify government as the perpetrator of such crimes but instead joins its wickedness: “at 26 he signed up with the Navy, turning down offers to stay on at Oxford and a lucrative consulting job.”

Does any little boy saying “I wanna be a policeman when I grow up!” picture himself parked in the highway’s median, lying in wait for the citizen speeding to his dying mother’s bedside? No, of course not: he’s pursuing the robber making off with the loot. Said robber is always, without qualification, bad – so bad everyone, and not just politicians, knows it. Does the high-school senior signing up with the Army imagine he’ll one day torture helpless prisoners of war? Absolutely not! He’s “serving his country,” “making the world safe for democracy.” The fact that the “enemy” is a political one, a country that hasn’t conformed to the Feds’ dictates, one whose leaders may be no more corrupt or tyrannical than our own, doesn’t occur to him until it’s too late – if it does at all. 

Meanwhile, how many other hits besides bin Laden’s have the Godfathers on the Potomac ordered? “The members of Team 6 are all ‘black’ operatives,” Business Insider breathlessly reports. “They exist outside military protocol, engage in operations that are at the highest level of classification and often outside the boundaries of international law [sic for ‘illegal’ while implying such inhumanity and ferocity as would nauseate any civilized stomach]. To maintain plausible deniability in case they are caught, records of black operations are rarely, if ever, kept.” Funny, I don’t remember the Constitution’s authorizing the Feds to engage in “black” operations, let alone keep them, their objectives, tactics, and victims secret from those of us paying the bills. 

Nonetheless, “’there are other operations going on around the globe constantly,’ said Capt. Duncan Smith, a SEAL spokesman … ‘We operate at 10,000 feet in the Hindu Kush Mountains. We operate in desert regions in Iraq and elsewhere. We operate in jungles throughout the world.” Yet Americans can’t fathom why the rest of the planet hates us nor understand the blowback we’re suffering after a century of such international skullduggery.

Evil abounds in this world. But government is its source, not a demigod saving us from it. “Mature self-starters” who pine to be heroes should free us from the State’s brutality, oppression, and corruption rather than suspend their better instincts to kill and thieve at its command. 

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