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... all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed.
-- Thomas Jefferson, "Declaration of Independence"
What has to happen before the average Productive Class American fights back against the police state being erected all around him at his own involuntary expense? How bad does it really have to get before he decides to react? What's it gonna take to motivate him to reclaim everything that is his by birthright? What kind of Orwellian nightmare has to come true before he begins to stand up and oppose the New World Order?
Most of all, is this the world he wants to leave his children and grandchildren?
Is this the world that you want to leave to your children and grandchildren?
What's it gonna take?
Will it take daily blood and urine testing on the job, at school, in your home, to ensure that you, your spouse, and your kids comply with drug laws there was never any Constitutional excuse for in the first place? (When did you get a chance to vote on it, or even sign a consent form?) Some politicians have suggested permanently installing devices in cars that won't let them start unless your breath passes muster.
Will it take mandatory sedation for all convicted dissenters and agitators? We're already a prescription drug-soaked nation, consuming "lifestyle drugs" and "mood-brighteners" -- meaning antidepressants and antipsychotics -- by the ton every year, just so we can endure what has become of America. Will we eventually reach the point predicted in George Lucas' first film, THX-1138, where "Failure to be properly sedated may result in prosecution for criminal drug avoidance"?
Will it take Soviet-style forcible commitment of people like that (possibly even people like you) to insane asylums that specialize in drugging patients and subjecting them to psychosurgery and electric shock?
What's it gonna take?
Will it take deliberate destruction of world-famous art objects, ancient artifacts, and books that tend to "destabilize the regime", or simply offend some ignorant bureaucrat or politician's sensibilities? That's the sort of thing that happens in countries ruled by Muslim fundamentalists, and other religious fanatics are notorious for burning records, tapes, and music CDs that fail to meet with their approval.
Will it take sophisticated face-recognition software that will eventually be able to infer what you're thinking -- at least that's what the authorities will claim when they haul you off to Guantanamo -- from your expressions and body language? All of this surveillance and intrusion started at the nation's airports, but, as I warned my readers it would, as early as the 1970s, it has spread from there, like some virulent fascist disease. Count the surveillance cameras that surround all of us today. 1984's Big Brother never had it so good.
Will it take American dollars that -- thanks to inflation, the government's version of counterfeiting -- are only worth what French francs, Italian lira, and Hungarian pengos were worth (eventually it took trillions of pengos just to buy a loaf for bread) after World War II? Will we have to resort to crude barter because businesses will no longer accept the worthless paper or electronic credit the government issues, and precious metals have been outlawed again as gold was in 1933?
What's it gonna take?
Will it take people being forced by the tens of millions to move into apartments (all the better to watch and eavesdrop on you, too, my dear) to avoid what the government will call the "waste of energy and grave danger to the global climate" involved in freestanding homes, which are being rendered increasingly valueless anyway by currency manipulation? (The government has devices right now that can see through the walls of your home to pinpoint heat sources -- people -- and concentrations of mass -- their weapons -- without a search warrant.)
On a related theme -- microwave pain-inflicting devices for crowd control -- see: http://www.commondreams.org/headlines01/0302-01.htm
Will it take an automated refusal at your grocery store's checkout stand to accept the purchases you've made, because the government's computer records show that you have exceeded recommended limits on sugar, salt, alcohol, or fat for the week? Will you have to turn to "lipidleggers" (thank you, F. Paul Wilson) to get all the butter you want?
Will it take an internal passport system and special government permission to travel from city to city or from state to state -- all in the name of "national security" or from the "dire necessity" to reduce our national "carbon footprint"? And what, precisely, is a driver's license, but an internal passport with training wheels? As of December 31, 2009, a national ID system -- based on a uniform federal standard for state-issued drivers' licenses -- becomes mandatory. You will be denied government services, airline travel, and possibly even access to your own bank account if you fail to possess the proper identification.
What's it gonna take?
Will it take the assignment of all jobs by the government -- since we must be "democratic" and "inclusive", intelligence, training, and prior experience won't count in the selection process -- with special permission required before you can change jobs or do any other kind of work?
Will it take the confiscation of every tool in your workshop, shed, or garage because building or repairing things costs people jobs, is a potentially dangerous task that should be left to government-licensed professionals, and besides, you might build a gun?
Will it take mandatory government boarding schools -- a fervent dream of socialists since before the turn of the 20th century -- for children? Especially your children who will be "educated" to despise you?
What's it gonna take?
Will it take a new law that people must get a license to have a child? They'll want to check your genes -- and your political opinions -- first.
Will it take knowing that every Internet message you send to or receive from anybody must first pass through understaffed, overworked, illiterate and ignorant censors before it can be sent onward to its intended recipient, slowing communication once again to a pre-Internet crawl?
Will it take shipment of our excess population -- or of various nonproductive undesirables -- to southern Mexico or northern Canada? Historically, socialist regimes have trouble feeding the masses, so you may see your exiled friends and relatives come back as "Soylent Green".
(See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Soylent_green for a description of this fine old Charlton Heston science fiction movie from the early 1970s.)
What's it gonna take?
Will it take private possession of copies of the Declaration of Independence, or of the Constitution, or of the Bill of Rights being considered seditious -- and probably subversive -- by the media and the government? Naturally, the original founding documents, now considered obsolete historical curiosities, and safely stored in a steel-lined, helium-filled vault, will only be viewable by responsible adults.
Will it take the conversion of any written, verbal, or electronic criticism of the United States government, the North American Union, or the United Nations into a offense punishable by imprisonment and torture?
Will it take the compulsory registration, licensure, and eventual forcible shutdown of all privately-owned websites. They'll say it's for the sake of "national security" or protecting the poor little kiddies from nasty things they -- or even their parents -- shouldn't see.
What's it gonna take?
Will it take the unlicensed possession of any computer, handheld electronic device, or even a smart telephone becoming a federal-level felony?
Will it take the refusal of medical assistance (and later on, of food, clothing, or shelter) to anybody over 65 -- unless, of course, they have a long record of "distinguished government service" -- or to certain individuals suspected of dangerous "antisocial" or "reclusive" tendencies?
Will it take a law -- or perhaps just an Executive Decree -- that requires you to register all of your guns with the local, state, or federal government? Will it take a $200 tax on each of your firearms -- or a $2000 tax? Will it take not being allowed to buy -- or even reload -- "military" caliber ammunition? Will it take an order to turn all of your guns in -- "voluntarily" -- before the BATFE and Homeland Security arrive at your home and forcibly confiscate them, possibly injuring or killing you or some member of your family in the process? Will it take the act of self-defense itself being ruled an antisocial crime?
What's it gonna take?
Enough. I understand perfectly if you don't like reading this kind of stuff. It's scary and depressing. Just imagine what it was like to have to write it! But most of it is a whole lot closer than you may realize.
Most people are unaware that churches, for example, are already required to comply with government specifications as a price they pay for their tax-exempt status. Turns out there are government-approved religions and government-unapproved religions. My guess would be that the Branch Davidian flavor of Seventh Day Adventism was one of the latter.
Equally, there are government-approved religious practices and practices -- "snake-handling", for example, or the polygyny of the original Mormons, or religious drug-use by those who mistakenly believe that they have the same civil rights as Indians do -- that are strictly forbidden despite the unmistakable language of the First Amendment.
On the basis of past performance -- the Mormons at Nauvoo, the Branch Davidians at Mount Carmel -- the mostly self-appointed thugs who run this civilization are more than happy to massacre members of any religious groups it doesn't like. Which means that the First Amendment separation of church and state (which many neoconservatives today have taken to claiming never existed) must be strengthened, not weakened.
Likewise, despite the clear language of the First Amendment, there is also forbidden speech. Wilhelm Reich was a doctor in the 1950s who came to teach and practice theories of medicine and health that were in sharp conflict with those of the conventionally established medical industry. (Note that it doesn't matter, for our purposes here, whether Reich's theories were scientifically valid or not; the man had what was supposed to have been an unquestionable right to think them up and pass them along.) The FDA's goons eventually broke his lectures up forcibly, smashed his apparatus, burned his books -- all of this in the shadow of World War II -- and threw him into prison, where he died.
"The right of the people peaceably to assemble" is a joke, where "parade permits" may be required for gatherings of over a certain number of individuals, and police must be present, at the expense of the gatherers. And to petition the government for a redress of grievances these days is to invite armed thugs into your home and business.
Today, judges -- whom we have mistakenly permitted to become a law unto themselves -- have forbidden the merest mention of the Bill of Rights, or of the thousand-year-old right of juries to judge the law itself in their courts, citing violators of this edict for contempt. Judges often order individuals being persecuted by the government not to talk about it in public, clearly violating the intention of the Framers.
And of course all bets are off if the government decides that you are a terrorist. You will disappear -- as many have already -- your family and lawyers may never hear from you again. Sadists will abuse you while denying that what they're doing to you is torture -- just as Bill Clinton denied that what Monica Lewinski was doing to him was sex.
It all depends on what the meaning of the word "is" is.
By permitting censorship of any kind -- of sexual material deemed to be "obscene", for example -- we have not only infantilized our civilization, we have opened a dangerous door to charges of "political obscenity" being used to stifle the right to object to government practices.
We have come close to this already over the phony issue of "global warming", where scientists are being fired from government jobs, and where college professors are being denied tenure, for disagreeing with the "current consensus". Some have even suggested suppressing media coverage of such dissenters and outlawing their speeches, books, and articles.
Wilhelm Reich could tell you what that's like, if he weren't dead at the hands of a government that supposedly had just defeated fascism.
So the question remains: what will it take to get people to resist these usurpations; what will they be willing to do to put an end to them?
What are you prepared to do?
[TO BE CONTINUED]
A fifty-year veteran of the libertarian movement, L. Neil Smith is the Author of 33 books including The Probability Broach, Ceres, Sweeter Than Wine, And Down With Power: libertarian Policy In A Time Of Crisis. He is also the Publisher of The Libertarian Enterprise, now in its 17th year online.
Visit the Neil Smith archive on JPFO.
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