The Ward Churchill affair is no more about Free Speech than the war in Iraq is about Democracy. My question is why are the American people so susceptible to fraud, lies and fabrications?
The responsibility for the Ward Churchill fiasco lies with the University of Colorado board of regents who hired him in the first place and built a department around him... the Department of Ethnic Studies at Colorado University.
It is clear that Churchill's longstanding "pattern of behavior" was inventing research to suit his theories, even to invent his own ethnicity, the same way Bush "fixed the intelligence" to suit his policy/plan to attack Iraq.
Why do Americans buy into fraud/crap/lies?
Why were Americans willing to believe the lies that led them to support the war in Iraq?
Why did the regents at CU appoint WC the head of the department of Ethnic studies when it was a clear and plain fact that his claim to be Native American was fraudulent? AIM
Why did the American people vote for GWB? (You can say, well, they didn't in 2000).... yet those who did vote for him in such great numbers... why? Because of his father? What record did GWB hold? The most executions ever in Texas?? Was his military record true? Was his educational record true? Had he earned distinction in any field?
Not being able to earn the vote honestly in 2000 Bush went and stole it. To create support for the war in Iraq, GWB manufactured intelligence and planted phony stories in the media.
Truth from These Podia
Summary of a Study of Strategic Influence, Perception Management,
Strategic Information Warfare and Strategic Psychological Operations
in Gulf II
Colonel, USAF (Retired)
Now those PsyOps were pretty well done. That August "product" was rolled off the assembly line with some skill. But that was five years ago... there is no excuse for anyone who is still buying this deadly line of bullshit.
50% of the American people believe up until this day that Saddam Hussein was responsible for 9-11.
Half of Americans link Hussein and Al Qaeda
That's now in 2007... against all evidence and for no other reason than because the President said so.
Buying a Pig in a Poke
Same with Ward Churchill... not being a Native American, he went and stole an identity... completely phony. Not being able to prove his historical theories Churchill manufactured phony citations.... he referenced articles he wrote himself under a pseudonym... he plagairazed others, and others he just plain made up.
Speech is Free, but lies are costly.
I think American people are the most intellectualy susceptible people on earth. That's great for the advertising business, but when it comes down to foreign policy it's lethal and education it leaves little hope for the future.
The shame is not on Ward Churchill, the shame is on the University of Colorado.
Report of the Investigative Committee of the Standing Committee on Research Misconduct at the University of Colorado at Boulder concerning Allegations of Academic Misconduct against Professor Ward Churchill:
Thus the decision to hire, and especially to confer continuous tenure on, a faculty member is a deeply consequential one for the University, for by making this decision the University commits itself to the defense of the individual’s work, so long as he or she lives up to the University’s expectations. We believe that the University of Colorado may have made the extraordinary decision to hire Professor Churchill, a charismatic public intellectual with no doctorate and no history of regular faculty membership at a university, to a tenured position without any probationary period in part because at that moment in the institution’s history, it desired the favorable attention his notoriety and following were expected to bring. This notoriety was achieved to some extent by the publication of some of the very essays that have now come under scrutiny because of their scholarly shortcomings. The hiring was, in short, largely the consequence of Professor Churchill’s effectiveness as a polemicist.
In other words, they bought his bullshit. The University hired Ward Churchill for his flamboyance, his notoriety, his showmanship, not for his credentials... and certainly not for his body of work.
I could paraphrase by saying:
The decision to elect, and to re-elect a President is a deeply consequential one for the country, for by making this decision the country also elects a Commander in Chief. I believe the American public made the extraordinary choice to elect George W Bush, a charismatic figure with no outstanding credentials of leadership in government, in the military, or in education to a tenured position in American government (save impeachment) because at that moment in our nation's history it desired to elect a President based on name recognition and party affiliation rather than for any qualities of intellect, leadership or moral fiber. Bush's notoriety was achieved in part from his term as Governor of Texas with Alberto Gonzales as his major domo then as now... during which tenure they held the record for the most execution of prisoners on death row without legal review. This pattern of behavior has now been in constant scrutiny because of this administration's record of torturing prisoners of war, the history this administration has of flaunting International and Constitutional law, rewriting or inventing law to escape the consequences of its criminal and unConstitutional policies.
The Bush years have been, in short, the result of a well orchestrated propaganda machine in combination with a gullible, susceptible and intellectually lax public, as well as elected officials who were willing to follow the President down any road, even to an illegal war, without questioning the "intelligence that was being fixed to suit the policy."
Senator Robert Byrd
Speech on the Senate Floor
"We Stand Passively Mute"
February 12, 2003
To contemplate war is to think about the most horrible of human experiences. On this February day, as this nation stands at the brink of battle, every American on some level must be contemplating the horrors of war.
Yet, this Chamber is, for the most part, silent -- ominously, dreadfully silent. There is no debate, no discussion, no attempt to lay out for the nation the pros and cons of this particular war. There is nothing.
We stand passively mute in the United States Senate, paralyzed by our own uncertainty, seemingly stunned by the sheer turmoil of events. Only on the editorial pages of our newspapers is there much substantive discussion of the prudence or imprudence of engaging in this particular war.
This speech of Sen. Byrd is more than four years old, but reading the following passage it is clear that nothing has changed.
Here at home, people are warned of imminent terrorist attacks with little guidance as to when or where such attacks might occur. Family members are being called to active military duty, with no idea of the duration of their stay or what horrors they may face. Communities are being left with less than adequate police and fire protection. Other essential services are also short-staffed. The mood of the nation is grim. The economy is stumbling. Fuel prices are rising and may soon spike higher.
In the last days of the Bush administration, while it is clear that the duty of the citizens and members of Congress is to impeach, just as it was the duty of the Regents of the University of Colorado was to fire Ward Churchill, the legacy of the years during which the American public was manipulated by fear and propaganda is still ahead of us. The American people have still not developed the means to critically evaluate their leaders or the media that is not free of the corporate agenda. The American people are no better educated than they were three and seven years ago to distinguish between lies and truth, fraud and authenticity.
Democracy itself is still in great danger, not from the enemy from without, but from the slow aggregated rot from within that began with the Nixon administration and continues until today. Until we re-establish the Constitution and the three co-equal branches of government we will never be out of the woods, and what has happened in the last seven years can and probably will happen again.
Even though we are now attuned to orange alerts and the potential for terrorist attacks, our founders would almost certainly caution us that the biggest threat to the future of the America we love is still the endemic challenge that democracies have always faced whenever they have appeared in history - a challenge rooted in the inherent difficulty of self governance and the vulnerability to fear that is part of human nature. Again, specifically, the biggest threat to America is that we Americans will acquiesce in the slow and steady accumulation of too much power in the hands of one person. -- Al Gore