Thursday, June 17, 2004

the politics of believing

Lots of interesting trends in politics have surfaced lately which bother me; the concept that the president is above American law, for example. My least favorite of late is the "believe" trend. From Cursor:

The Post article refers to a April 2004 Harris poll, in which 49 percent of Americans said they believe "clear evidence that Iraq was supporting al-Qaeda has been found." And according to a March 2004 PIPA poll, 57 percent believe that before the war Iraq was providing substantial support to al-Qaeda.

Believe. Believe. Lots of believing going around. The President believes Saddam has connections to Al-Qaeda. People believe things are going well in Iraq.

Fuck this. I'm tired of belief. I want to see evidence. I want to see a paragraph going by without the word "believe." Evidence means "that which is seen." Mr. President, if it's so visible, why isn't anyone else getting it? Are you letting belief get in the way of your eyes? Or are we all supposed to do that? Suspend whatever critical faculties we possess in favor of the race-inspired belief that all Middle Easterns are terrorists? Fuck all this "belief" shit. This is the real world, not a church. You have proof, you show us. What are you so afraid of? Saddam's in fucking PRISON. What is there left to compromise on your evidence? And why are people so reticient about pointing this out?

The administration's dependency on belief is a house built on a lot of straw men - largely the race thing I mentioned (grouping all Middle Easterns together makes it easier to believe in a connection;) the alienness of their language (Look! Iraq and Al-Qaeda both have Q's!;) the alienness of their religion for many Americans (who still aren't well-informed enough to truly perceive the distinction between Muslim groups, who are often as distinct from each other as Baptists and Catholics.) The administration relies on this lack of information - this lack of evidence, if you will - to create an atmosphere where belief is not only possible but necessary. Add to the stewpot Bush's dependency on religious language and his invocation of the Crusades - and of course the terror of a populace devastated by Nine-Eleven - and you have all the elements needed to create an uninformed populace, dependent only on the words of the Bush-hydra (so many heads from the same body), who will believe whatever they are told, ignoring the various cries not only for common sense but evidence.

This might be one of the reasons why the Bush administration is insisting so strangely that they are right despite the commission's evidence and findings. They are hoping to confuse the issue by confounding proof with authority. They hope that speaking loud enough will make people, you guess it, believe. They can't contradict any of these findings with papers, photos, confessions, or anything. All they have are loud voices, with which to make us believe.

Maybe that's one reason I see past him so easily; Deaf people aren't swayed by political voices! Hmmm!

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