While I’m away with family today, I’d like to introduce you to the lady who pulls all the levers and oils the bearings that make this thing work. Doing a daily column is a lot of work and my editor Dee is the one who gets it all done. Here is her guest editorial.
Living in Britain for a number of years has given me a perspective on current US events that relatively few can claim to possess. Readers of Drudge Report may be familiar with the frequent links to UK news items from quality newspapers such as the ‘Telegraph’ and ‘The Times’ (the latter, incidentally, was originally called ‘The Thunderer’ in its early days – what a wonderful name!), along with some from the ‘knee-jerk’ papers, often called ‘red-tops’ due to their colored header background. According to a recent survey, there has been a huge rise in the number of American online readers accessing and commenting on these British sites.
So why the increased interest in the affairs of Blighty from over the pond? Apart from the obvious connections of friends, family and expats, along with the sometimes strained ‘closest ally’ relationship, I believe there is something deeper – something that could help to save the US.
Socialism and communism (someone once said that “socialism is communism in a hurry”) are newcomers to the American political scene, at least at Congressional and, dare I say it, Presidential level. If you’re not familiar with something, there is a tendency to let it play out and see what happens first. The naïve (and usually younger) voter may be blinded by these Utopian sounding ideas. The more wary amongst us, often older with longer memories, will look further ahead and further afield to examine the effects of socialist policies. British newspapers are a great place to start.
The biggest impact on the individual is the removal of freedoms, many of which form the basis of the US Bill of Rights. Let’s look at the First Amendment to begin with. While it is ‘acceptable’ to criticize the Christian churches or Israel, any public criticism of Islam could find you charged with anything from racism to inciting hatred, amongst various other public disorder offenses. This is in a country that fought valiantly in the twentieth century against the national socialists for the rights of Jews and other minorities, the nazi doctrine sharing much in common with that of jihad.
It was this freedom of expression that managed to get Michael Savage and Geert Wilders banned from the UK. The UK government finally backed down in the case of the latter. Well, it’s pretty difficult to ban someone from an EU country when they have a ‘free movement’ passport. That is, of course, unless the person commits a crime. Wilders’ only crime was speaking his mind, thoughts which the Westminster socialists did not like.
This hypocrisy of the left channels down to education, where establishments have been instructed not to liaise with Israeli institutions. Is that any surprise when there are Members of Parliament who openly support terrorist organizations like Hamas? George Galloway was challenged on this point a couple of years ago by talk radio host Rusty Humphries. When the questions got too hot to handle, Galloway called security to remove Humphries from the building. That of course sums up the attitude of a left-wing government – they are NOT answerable to the people.
Of course, control of the media is an important factor to the left (watch out for the fairness doctrine coming down the pike!).
The BBC, Auntie Beeb as she has been affectionately known in Britain, has become Nanny Beeb, the official organ of the nanny state. For decades, it was respected for factual coverage of news and current affairs. Its entertainment output was the envy of broadcasters worldwide, high quality period dramas being one of its hallmarks. While the quality of programing has deteriorated and its ‘factual’ programs become ever more left-leaning, the compulsory license fee (tax, basically) increases annually. For $227 a year, you can enjoy programs that espouse the dangers of global warming, the plight of Palestinians (but not the Israelis who were bombarded by their rockets), soap operas that make juvenile drunkenness and drug abuse look acceptable, not to mention children’s entertainment with not-so-hidden political messages.
I saw an episode of Doctor Who, produced by the BBC, on the SyFy channel recently. That’s not a misprint – they changed the name from Sci-Fi for copyright reasons! It involved the Doctor and his equally provincial-English speaking assistant (Oxford English is frowned upon these days, which is probably why people like Stuart Varney took their eloquence to the US) arriving millions of years in the future. When asked by his assistant how the Doctor knew that a building was a hospital, he replied “The green crescent, the universal symbol for a hospital”. Not a red cross, not a Star of David or the snake and staff, but a green crescent. This is only one example.
So what does the British taxpayer get for their hard-earned bucks? Those who decide to work, that is, rather than those who ‘play the system’ for welfare benefits, that can be financially better off than if they were employed. A police force that has no teeth, who might attend a 911 call “within an hour”, which is the standard control center reply. A police department that tells a supermarket manager (of my acquaintance) that their time was being wasted for attending a shoplifting incident. A system of law and order where a person can get incarcerated for a longer period for possessing a weapon in their home for personal defense, than a person who inflicts serious injuries on an innocent member of the public. Considering the fact that Britain is a ‘gun-free’ society, the rising number of shootings in public places is something to worry about. Proves the point that the bad guys will always get guns – leaving the innocent, law-abiding folks defenseless.
I guess it keeps the health service busy, what’s left of it. A gunshot wound would put someone at the front of the line, no mean feat when it can take three weeks to get a doctor’s appointment, a year to see a specialist for a serious shoulder injury (both of these are my personal experiences), eighteen months for cataract surgery, or years for hip surgery. I know a guy who hobbles around at work all day that has been waiting over two years for surgery. I have nothing but praise for the medical professionals that I have personally encountered. They are overworked, underpaid (especially when compared to their US counterparts) and sometimes even physically abused. But they are like the crew of a sinking ship – no matter how good their seafaring skills, if the hull is seriously flawed there is nothing on Earth that will stop it going down! Free health service? Hardly! More and more tax money is being pumped in every year, with nothing to show for it. You’ll see soon enough with Obamacare.
There you have it, folks. A little taste of what is to come in the Socialist States of America. Enjoy what freedoms you have left while you can. Of course it can be reversed, in the US at least. The disease has taken root in Britain and people get used to it, it is all the younger generation have ever known. It would take a major revolution to change British society now and quite frankly there seems to be no-one on the horizon up to the job. The last hope, in the form of the Conservative party, seem more interested in kowtowing to the voter than upholding beliefs – their support of global warming legislation is testimony to that. The name Daniel Hannan springs to mind, maybe there are more like him who put belief before popularity.
YOU, the American citizen, CAN stop this slide towards total government control. The longer you let it slide, the harder it is to pull back. It might sound melodramatic, but if America is lost, all is lost. Rekindle the spirit that said NO to Britain in 1776, but this time aim your protests at the Capitol. Start by sweeping clean Congress in 2010. The choice is simple. Follow the British example, where the people work for the government – or make the government work for the American people. Keep reading those Brit newspapers, it will give you the impetus to avoid making the same mistakes!