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View Diary: Another Cabbie. Another Incredible Story. UPDATED (287 comments)

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  •  I don't think so (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    kilo50, FindingMyVoice

    If a few secret police thugs wandered into the wrong redneck neighborhood and were found miles away in the trunk of a car, the next round of secret police thugs would tread less boldly.  America is a nation of many disparate cultural groups, but we are all Americans.  Unlike many another former British colonial territory, or Soviet protectorate, we keep all our ethnic tensions simmering on top, thanks very much.  So we're not homogenously going to respond to being tyrranized.  And we're not going to be so readily turned against one another.  I remain convinced that my Republican friends only remain Republican because they don't know or won't hear about how bad it is.  I don't blame them because they are just not in the right place to see what the naked truth is.  The numerous stories posted by former Repubs on this site convince me that once the shine wears off, it wears off hard.  And they will still be my friends, and I would still stand up for them and they for me.  Believe it or not.

    Stalin tortured people & held them without trial. Was the USSR safer for it?

    by slippytoad on Fri Sep 29, 2006 at 01:09:20 PM PDT

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    •  Mile Wide, Inch Deep (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Michigan Paul

      is what I hope Bush's "coalition" truly proves to be.

      The religio-fascists are a pretty dysfunctional bunch anyway.  Weak inside, and don't take adversity very well.

      They can roll across the steppes very well, but one day up against Stalingrad, Moscow, or Leningrad, and they're not feeling much like their cherished Wehrmacht anymore...

      If a thousand men were not to pay their tax bills this year, that would not be a violent and bloody measure, as it would be to pay them, and enable the State...

      by HenryDavid on Fri Sep 29, 2006 at 02:45:24 PM PDT

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    •  They will *now*. (8+ / 0-)

      "You see," my colleague went on, "one doesn’t see exactly where or how to move. Believe me, this is true. Each act, each occasion, is worse than the last, but only a little worse. You wait for the next and the next. You wait for one great shocking occasion, thinking that others, when such a shock comes, will join with you in resisting somehow. You don’t want to act, or even talk, alone; you don’t want to ‘go out of your way to make trouble.’ Why not?—Well, you are not in the habit of doing it. And it is not just fear, fear of standing alone, that restrains you; it is also genuine uncertainty.

      ...

      "But the one great shocking occasion, when tens or hundreds or thousands will join with you, never comes. That’s the difficulty. If the last and worst act of the whole regime had come immediately after the first and smallest, thousands, yes, millions would have been sufficiently shocked—if, let us say, the gassing of the Jews in ’43 had come immediately after the ‘German Firm’ stickers on the windows of non-Jewish shops in ’33. But of course this isn’t the way it happens. In between come all the hundreds of little steps, some of them imperceptible, each of them preparing you not to be shocked by the next. Step C is not so much worse than Step B, and, if you did not make a stand at Step B, why should you at Step C? And so on to Step D."

      No one ever stands up.  I went into work today thinking, my god, we've got to do something -- but with who?  And what?  It's alright when you're online, but when you're in public, surrounded by people whose opinions you don't know -- that's another thing entirely.

      •  Best post in months (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        viscerality, DSPS owl, lemming22

        Lemming22, you have it so right.  You hit the nail on the head.  People won't stand up because we all are waiting for the hundreds of thousands to join with us to march to the streets of Washington and throw the fascists out on their ears.

        But all that happens is an occasional anti-war march or protest, that gets little mention in the local or national media.  And I haven't even seen an anti-war protest around here in months.  The last organized action was I believe about this time last year, when the American death toll in Iraq reached 2,000.

        About 40 of us manned protest signs along Michigan Avenue on the border between Lansing and East Lansing, stood in the autumn chilly winds for a couple hours and then dispersed.  I don't even think it was covered in the local media.

        I wish I had confidence people would stand up, but I know they won't.  So, I can try to think about leaving the country, which really is not in the cards for me by a long shot.  So, its in God's hands.  And I'm scared.  Very scared for my family and my country.

        "The only thing we have to fear, is fear itself."-FDR

        by Michigan Paul on Fri Sep 29, 2006 at 10:02:53 PM PDT

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        •  Thank you. :) (0+ / 0-)

          Read the book.  Seriously, there are parts where it's one of the most terrifying things I've read in recent history.

          And we don't know what to do.  Our country is so used to being functional, we don't know what to do when it's dysfunctional -- when all the checks and balances stop working.

    •  Snitches and stupidity keep everyone in line (0+ / 0-)

      While I was in Miami I had friends who had recently left Cuba in what they call "the lottery," the chance that 25,000 Cubans get every so many years (it is supposed to be annually but Castro stops it for years in a row) to immigrate legally to the U.S., as randomly selected by the government from petitions, or applications, they send in. They told me that, in Cuba, there are people who are designated in each neighborhood to spy on others on their street.  So, even if not ALL Cubans are pro-Castro, they know they will be tattled on by their neighbors and jailed as political prisoners, so they keep themselves in line in public.  This quells any mass demonstrations. I can see that happening here - heck, what about gays, and even straight couples, who are prosecuted for having "deviant" consensual sex in their own homes?  Someone had to spy on them and tattle!  And I've seen on tv many people who have horror stories, especially from Texas, of being prosecuted for private things no one could have known they were doing in their homes -- there has to be more of this going on than we know.

      From the elections of 2000 and '04, it appears that a good 40-50% of the U.S. population would blindly follow their leaders into fascism.  If you ever listen to fascist theory as proscribed by Mussollini, the father of modern fascism, he says that it is the state knowing better than the individual what is best for the state and requiring the individual to step in line.  Does anyone else see that happening here already?  We are told that we have to do what's best for the nation, and anything else is prosecutable.  You think that you don't have neighbors who would take to that like a horse to water?  All it takes is one person in each neighborhood....

      I grew up and now live again in a very rural area in Pennsylvania, and I can tell you that these people who you think are rugged individualists are actually drug-addicted, lazy creeps who would go with any flow as long as they got their paychecks and weren't required to lift a finger otherwise.  They would not defend their freedoms, they don't want freedoms, they want to do the bare minimum, if that, to stay alive.  All the government would have to do is extend food stamps to the working class and they would be held in check.  They don't know what the political parties stand for, they can't remember a thing they learned in school and they don't care, and many of them are Republicans because they've been told that Democrats are all gay God haters and they don't want to go to Hell because their church tells them gay God haters go to Hell, so they hate the Democrats.  And if you show up with a liberal education and try to reason with them, you are a gay God hater and they are conditioned to argue with you with the worst logic available that you cannot dislodge with even the tightest facts.  Trust me, I've tried, and I'm a PhD student in U.S. history, I know the facts and these people are oblivious morons who don't care who has rights and who doesn't, including themselves.  They feel sorry for me because I am a gay God hater in their eyes (and for the record, I am straight and I love God, but then again, my God doesn't cast souls into any kind of hell other than the one we are living right now).

      I also came to understand why many Cuban-Americans are so pro-Republican, and it has nothing to do with the GOP stance on Castro (like our government likes to tell us): it is that they are used to a communist government that controls all thoughts and actions, and can't deal with the freedom of the U.S., and luckily for them there is a political party in the U.S. that mimics what they lived in Cuba, and that is the GOP.  Not that all the Democrats are much better, as Maccabee said at the end of this article, it is just a matter of degrees of fascism.  Like the Roman Empire, our government has become too big, too invasive, and too self-serving, and that can't be cured by a regular election.

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