A great man passed away recently.
When I was in college taking Russian History the news was full of a Russian Pulitzer Prize winning author being allowed to emigrate to the U.S. and then releasing a book telling the world what it was like in the Soviet Union under Stalin. I still have my copy of that book. I've only read it once, but certain parts of it are still burned in my memory.
Stalin giving a speech to the Politburo (their Congress), when he finished everyone naturally gave him a standing ovation, then the NKVD (secret police) stepped onto the stage. Everyone stood clapping for hours until someone finally stopped. He was quickly arrested and sent to Siberia.
Solzhenitsyn began the book exploring the issue of blame. Who was to blame for the excesses, the pain, the lost lives, absence of liberty. He blamed the people, not the paranoid power drunk leaders. That it is up to the people to stand up for their rights.
Anyone who has read my blog for the last few years knows full well I haven't been silent concerning the abuses at Guantanimo, the loss of habeas corpus and my opinion of Bushco. I've quoted my brother who has been greatly vocal about the abuses of the Republicans and Moral Mafia. I've added links to Scott Horton and Harper's Magazine that have helped inform me concerning the legal excesses of our current justice dept, that would make Stalin and Beria feel warm and fuzzy.
In the last couple of weeks the one time war hero, congressional maverick has turned into a lap dog of the neocon constitutional demolition party. Megalomaniacs R Us didn't have to pass laws to silence the press, they bought it lock, stock, presses and studios. This election will determine if we are going to fight war in-perpetuity to make more money for the top 2% of our population. I'm counting on the people saying enough is enough and changing not just the executive, but cleaning out the legislative branch as well. Our courts and Civil Service will be infected for decades with the wild eyed true believers in the cult of personality that has bloomed around Bushco.
Then there is Mr. Hypocrite personified lecturing China on human rights yesterday. That also brought back something a college professor taught me over thirty years ago: "People don't listen to a speech, they listen to a speaker."