“There is only one major news network telling the truth about what they are broadcasting – CBS. However, for those of us who are tired of seeing B.S., the choices seem more and more limited.”
— Swami Beyondananda
Last year, I highly recommended a powerful documentary, The Most Dangerous Man in America, about Daniel Ellsberg and the leaking of the Pentagon Papers. Nearly 40 years ago, Ellsberg – a one-time Marine and military analyst – took the bold step of leaking documents that told the truth about the Vietnam War. It is heartening to watch that documentary, as we see the risks Ellsberg took, and the way the press actually covered the story – and covered Ellsberg’s behind. Consequently, Daniel Ellsberg went free and truth, transparency, integrity and justice won a victory.
Fast forward four decades, and we see the forces of endarkened self-interest have learned their lessons well, far better than those who inherited the peace and justice movement from Ellsberg and company. No more body bag photos to turn Americans against war. No more independent reportage, as correspondents are in-bedded with the military (and no, we will not respect them in the morning). Since Iran-Contra, America has a history of exonerating our war criminals, and persecuting whistle-blowers.
Meanwhile, the once-honorable profession of journalism has been toxified by the likes of Rupert Murdoch as what used to be news is now little more than weapons of mass-distraction – a brainwashing machine stuck on spin. Edward R. Murrow must be flipping in his crypt.
Not surprisingly, the mainstream press has been nearly-unanimous in its lack of support for Wikileaks, thus earning them the nickname “Weaky Licks.” ‘Nuff said.
There is only one thing that can possibly work now, and that is an independent, across-the-political-spectrum alliance of political, spiritual, business, entertainment, education and other leaders who stand up for Wikileaks at a time when prosecution of Julian Assange is almost assured.
The United States of America is now at a Martin Niemoller moment. Niemoller was the German clergyman who at first supported, then opposed Adolf Hitler and is known for the quote:
First they came for the communists,
and I didn’t speak out because I wasn’t a communist.
Then they came for the trade unionists ,
and I didn’t speak out because I wasn’t a trade unionist.
Then they came for the Jews,
and I didn’t speak out because I wasn’t a Jew.
Then they came for me
and there was no one left to speak out for me.
Nazi Germany had its karma, and this is not Nazi Germany. But it is “Not-See America,” where too many Americans are afraid to look down the rabbit hole, even as they suspect our government of nefarious doings. So, what can be done?
Well, here is a simple first step. Sign this petition as I have, and pass it along to your list.
It’s not perfect, particularly because it is primarily left of center, and is not represented – as yet – by the growing number of right wing libertarians who recognize the creeping fascism of the corporate state. And that brings us to something else that can be done.
Sometime after February 1st – soon after, we hope – Joseph McCormick and I will be releasing our e-book, Reuniting America: A Toolkit for Changing the Political Game. I’ve been immersed in political science for more than forty years, and I can say that Reuniting America might be the most significant practical political book of our time. (I’m not bragging on myself, because this book is written in Joseph’s voice and based on the wisdom he has gleaned from looking at our political landscape “from both sides now.” I feel that my most important function in this project has been to recognize the spiritual and political wisdom in his ideas and tell everyone I know.)
We are hoping this book will be a political game-changer, as it offers both a pathway for political “up-wising” and practical guidelines and principles for convening local conversations and councils where all sides (not to mention all angles) are included. Don’t think it’s possible? You will after reading this book! It’s not on sale yet, but you can contribute to the cause, and watch this space for further developments.
If there’s one thing the nascent transpartisan upwising has demonstrated, more and more of us are awakening. In communicating with one another to confirm our suspicions, we build the courage to speak, and the courage to stand together. While our parents and grandparents who survived the Great Depression and stood up to Nazism 60 or 70 years ago have been celebrated as “the greatest generation,” our challenge may be greater.
Let’s build on the courage of the past, and build ourselves a healthier future by standing up in the present. Sign the petition. Pass it on. It’s Wikileaks or Weaky Licks. It’s up to us.
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In addition to the brand new e-book filled with three dozen of the most hilarious jokes ever conceived, The Zen Cohens of Harry Cohen Baba, we also offer a PDF version of Swami’s Political Dictionary, AND a digital version of one of Swami’s four comedy CDs: Don’t Squeeze the Shaman, Beyondananda and Beyond, Drive Your Karma Curb Your Dogma or Supreme Court Jester. All this for the same subscriber cost of $33. (The Zen Cohens book is available NOW for download, as is the Dictionary! Hooray for instant gratification.)
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