In a June 7 editorial — “AP Essay: Gulf oil spill deepens public loss of faith in US gov't, institutions” — The Associated Press' Washington bureau chief, Ron Fournier, advances the notion that America was “founded on the principle of trust” in government and elected leaders.
Now, it seems to me — and I might be reaching here — that the Founders felt just the opposite: that individual life, liberty, and pursuit of happiness were the principles worth fighting and dying for against the imperial British government.
Indeed, it was a well-founded distrust in government, and disdain for the status quo, that spurred a revolution toward American independence. And, so far as elected leaders are concerned, Thomas Jefferson said, “[L]et no more be heard of confidence in man, but bind him down from mischief by the chains of the Constitution.”
But who am I but another skeptical American who is obviously contributing to what Ron Fournier and the AP see as a troubling trend of distrust in government.
Keeping with the AP tradition of blaming systemic shortcomings of government on everything but the system and its exponents, Fournier mourns the meltdown yet never considers whether his and his employer's fascialist ideology is at the heart of what's wrong.
On the contrary, the government's ever-increasing control over private life is Orwellianly omitted for the sake of blaming “lax government oversight” and isolated incidents of “corporate wrongdoing” for “the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression.”
And God forbid that the state-coddling news media should be held to account one iota for all the government has gotten away with. Ironically, Fournier asks: “How did we get to this point where people EXPECT their government to lie to them?” Perhaps Fournier is upset that he and his industry peers have done a sub-par job, lately, of passing government lies as Gospel.
But at some point, every shrewd observer comes to realize that lying is in fact necessary for governments to maintain and expand their domains over their subjects — to keep alive domestic and foreign policies that would otherwise be violently rejected for the immoral and illegal wars they are.
Apparently, AP's target audience is not so nuanced or independent of thought. No. The ideal consumer of AP copy is rather a herd-follower amenable to drone-conditioning state-worship. Why else, in his final attack on common sense, would Fournier have the gall to blame private Americans for being too skeptical about whom they elect to office?
From their government, Americans don't expect perfection. But the system requires that people at least have faith in their political leaders to be competent and accountable.
“If people don't believe, if people don't give, if people don't trust, they will pick the politicians who are the loudest rather than the most sincere,” said Baick, the history professor. “They will pick the rabble rouser rather than the technocrat who gets things done.”
Right. “Get things done,” as in, wreck the economy by printing, spending and borrowing money, and destroying private property everywhere — all in the name of freedom and prosperity. This is the “system” that is accepted as an inevitable and indispensable part of American life by the greatest luminaries of the free [sic] press.
Now, if all you misguided, self-owning, private Americans would only stop your kvetching and trust your innocuous and ever-benevolent masters…