April 8, 2014
By Alan Keyes
The stories report that “officials” are saying that there was no indication that the second shooting spree at Fort Hood was terrorism-related. They say that “Lt. Gen. Mark Milley, III Corps commander at Fort Hood, said the shooter was a soldier who was under evaluation for post-traumatic stress disorder.” They say that “the shooter, identified as 34-year old Ivan Lopez, is among the dead.”
So they say. But these days, what brain-functional person believes what officials, even those in high positions of responsibility, say about events like this. Just yesterday, April 2, I was reading about Michael Morell, a former deputy director at the CIA, who told the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence “that the CIA ignored a key piece of information that was the exact opposite of what then-U.S. ambassador to the UN Susan Rice told the American public” about the attack on U.S. personnel in Benghazi that took the life of the U.S. ambassador to Libya, among others.
The information came from CIA officers on the ground in Libya, but Morell said “he did not believe there had been no protests, because there were press reports describing protests.”
What if the III Corps commander is saying there was no terrorism involved in the latest Fort Hood shootings because the people briefing him have read press reports saying there was no terrorism involved in the latest Fort Hood shootings?
That’s the problem with living in a media whirl where everything is being fabricated by people who believe that there is no “truth,” that it’s all relative to someone’s point of view. Of course that includes the bureaucrats‘ concern with how others may react to what the facts say about their competence; the military officers‘ view of how others will judge their fitness for command; the appointed government officials‘ view of whether and how others will upbraid their policies; and the elected politicians‘ view of how their backers will view their viability in the next election.
And, of course, there’s the media bureaucrats‘ fear of what viewers will do with the TV remote if their network comes late to the feeding frenzy because they waited to check out whether the latest “news” feed contained poison.
There was a time when it was not entirely irrational for Americans to assume that, where life and death matters of public concern were involved, “big lies” would not routinely be the stuff the news was made of. We expected high government officials to hem and haw a bit while they were catching up with events. But we also expected that, once the facts became clear, they would make an effort to provide a true account to the people at large. National security considerations made for exceptions to this, of course, but they were not the rule.
In the last generation or so, however, a maxim I often heard associated with a well-known public figure in the early years of my public service seems to have become the rule: Never tell the truth when a lie will do.
Moreover, when the power to fabricate information is comprehensively monopolized over several generations, as it was in the heyday of Communist Party dictatorship in the old Soviet Union, the time comes when people at large resign themselves to the fact that their peaceful daily existence depends on conforming to whatever “truth” those in power are determined to impose upon them.
Solzhenitsyn famously chronicled the enormous spiritual and moral toll this resignation of truth involves. On the day before he was forcibly sent into exile in the West, he released the essay “Live Not by Lies!” in which he wrote of himself and his fellow citizens in the Soviet Union:
Policies put in place during the Clinton era, and maintained by Republican and Democratic administrations in Washington since then, require U.S. armed forces be disarmed on American military bases. The nation’s defenders are prohibited from being ready to defend themselves or their family members.
But unlike them, we can still do the natural thing (i.e., the thing we are entitled to do, by “the laws of nature and of nature’s God”). As citizens, we can use our votes to send a simple message to our elected representatives:
I see only one movement under way that rejects the vocationally deceitful political culture that now predominates in both so-called “major” political parties. It is the congregation of those who have pledged to use their vote to energize the political will needed to impeach and remove Obama from power, by constitutional means, along with his henchmen and collaborators.
© Alan Keyes