July 01, 2010

More on Scary Russian Spies, and on What Should Concern You

I wrote the other day about the dastardly Russian spy plot to destroy the world as you know it. My primary focus was on an element that most commentators, and most Americans, take as axiomatically true: that, assuming spying was going on, it was an act revealing evil design and intent. But is that true? My post tried to demonstrate that, in light of the United States' century-old foreign policy of worldwide hegemony, including repeated, ceaseless, blatant military aggression and invasion, covert operations, and so on, spying and many other methods of ascertaining U.S. plans are a reasonable and justified response.

In the earlier entry, I didn't address another aspect of this story explicitly, because I consider it almost too obvious to mention. Perhaps that was an error, so I'll correct it now. The details of this incomprehensibly evil Russkie plot, as provided by the government to the always obedient, servile media, are ludicrously laughable. For example, we have this statement in the NYT story: " the charges did not include espionage, and it was unclear what secrets the suspected spy ring — which included five couples — actually managed to collect." So these crafty, cunning spies aren't actually charged with espionage? And we don't know if they "actually managed to collect" any secrets at all? Scary! (Cue the critics' chorus: "But they got Al Capone for tax evasion!" Keep reading.)

Moreover, the suspects are "not accused of obtaining classified materials." They are charged with conspiracy to fail to register as agents of a foreign government and to commit money laundering. Then there all the details which the NYT (and many others) characterize as "read[ing] like an old-fashioned cold war thriller": swapping identical bags in train stations, messages in invisible ink [!!], and so forth. Thus, the references to being transported back to the 1950s that I mentioned.

Yes, many if not most of the details of the official story are laughable. I remind you that this is almost always true of the scare stories peddled by our or any government. Take a look at "Unreasoning Hysteria as the Default Position: Joan Crawford Does Foreign Policy," from three damned years ago. In that case, huge numbers of people had paralyzing nervous breakdowns about the prospect of a series of explosions that would utterly destroy a huge international airport and most of the states on the Eastern seaboard.

For the hysteria addicts, several problems unfortunately presented themselves, hardly least of which was the fact that "the suspects never got hold of explosive devices." Well, damn. Universe-destroying explosions without explosive devices, evil spying without espionage... I think we might be able to discern a pattern here. In the post about the explosions that didn't explode, I excerpted Andrew McCarthy's astonishing fit of hysteria, and followed that with a little speech I wrote for Ms. Crawford summarizing this approach to analysis. I love that speech so much that I'll offer it again:
You're all trying to destroy me! You're all against me, you bastards! You broke my heart, and now you want to kill me! But I won't let you, do you hear me? I won't let you! I'm going to live, damn you, I'm going to LIVE!
I immodestly suggest that you print out this little instance of imperishable drama and provide it a prominent place in your office or home. Then, to remind yourselves of what is actually going on, glance at it regularly when the concocted hysteria about Iran begins rising again. I shouldn't say "again": the Iran hysteria has never stopped. I once more recommend that you consult "The Worsening Nightmare" for details concerning why none of it is grounded in fact; nothing of consequence has changed in the past few years.

So non-exploding explosions of death then, non-spying spies now, together with existential threats that aren't serious threats of any kind.

Yes, it's laughable and ludicrous. What I find interesting at this point isn't any of that, especially since I've debunked this kind of self-created hysteria on more than a few previous occasions (as have other writers, to be sure). But governments lie all the time; when it comes to consolidating and enhancing their own already immense powers, they rarely do anything else. None of that should be surprising to any minimally functioning adult. That such ridiculous routines continue to evoke panic and fear among so many Americans is testament only to Americans' remarkable (and frequently unforgivable) immaturity, ignorance and willingness to believe an endless stream of lies.

Yet the brute fact remains that we have a number of States devoted to the maintenance and expansion of their own power. The pursuit of power, and of resources (including human resources) and wealth, necessarily brings them into conflict with each other. As a result, they seek to find advantage over one another in numerous ways. Short of open military conflict or even covert military operations, they will utilize all available means to find out what other States are up to and what they're planning, and they will more particularly try to derail or undermine those States they view as competitors of special concern.

I draw your attention again to "Evil in Broad Daylight," and the details offered there of what the U.S. government is now doing in 75 countries around the world. And I stress once more that this is what the government wants us to know. What's going on that we know nothing about? A lot, you can be certain.

I consider that an absolute certainty given the testimony of history, and in view of the conflicts inherent in the existence of States competing for finite resources and wealth. So the public tales of botched airport explosions and notorious spies may be worthy of ridicule, but you can be sure that many other activities go on all the time about which we know nothing.

On the basis of past and current reams of evidence, and here I refer to spies of the non-laughable variety, I therefore consider it a given that Russians are spying on the U.S., just as I take it as a given that the U.S. spies on Russia. I also view it as certain that Russia, the U.S. and a number of other countries are engaged in many other activities designed to undercut competing nations' plans and goals. I add, and I give this special emphasis, that I don't think this falls into the category of "conspiracy-mongering" in any respect at all. As I said, I base these statements on information that is public, and on the nature of competing States that are notably vicious, murderous and destructive. That they are notably vicious, murderous and destructive is hardly a secret, and to characterize them as such involves no conspiracy. For God's sake, look at the parade of horrors that is the daily news.

But the ludicrous public tales of threatening explosions and dangerous spies serve a critical purpose: while most people are absorbed with examining the details of stories that the government eagerly feeds the ravening public beast, very few people concern themselves with what else is going on.

In one sense, this is a tricky issue, and I think it requires a resistance to oversimplification. As I've stated many times and again here, what goes on in full view is horrible and murderous enough. To say that the State is determined "to harvest" all of us until there is nothing left isn't conspiracy-mongering: that's the conclusion compelled by the public record. At the same time, I don't consider it arguable that still more is happening well out of view -- a supplemental parade of horrors, as it were, just in case the horrors known to us aren't quite enough for our rulers. When it comes to the plans of States to oppress, brutalize and exploit huge numbers of individuals for the benefit of the ruling class, it's not either what is known publicly or what the States' monstrous "secret" plans are. Either would be sufficiently ghastly by itself -- but it's both that should concern you.

I'm sorry. What a terrible post to write just before a holiday weekend. Are there holidays in hell? I suspect not.

Have a good weekend anyway. As I say these days, laugh at the motherfuckers. And fuck 'em.