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America, Global Enemy #1Daniel Johnson Salem-News.com
As Americans continue to degrade and destroy the earth, they are destroying it for everyone.
(CALGARY, Alberta) - There are tens of millions of good Americans; people I could like, admire and respect if I knew them personally. At the same time there are tens of millions of bad Americans who, intentionally or otherwise, are bent towards destroying the world and everyone on it (including, ironically, themselves, but they don’t seem to have that much awareness).
The latter group appears to be gaining ascendancy and many people, Americans, and those of us elsewhere on this common earth, are legitimately alarmed.
Behind American action is a combination of myths, delusions and paranoia. I fear, for example, for what will happen here when Americans finally figure out that Canadians are actually communists.
The evidence is all there—universal health care, and much stronger unions being the most obvious. We have a strong national political party called the New Democratic Party (NDP) which is unashamedly socialistic but on the American political scale, would be communistic.
The American Liar
A couple of weeks ago, Senator Jon Kyl of Arizona said in a speech: “You don’t have to go to Planned Parenthood to get your cholesterol or your blood pressure checked. If you want an abortion, you go to Planned Parenthood, and that’s well over 90 percent of what Planned Parenthood does.”
When challenged on this, Kyl’s staff said the percentage “was not intended to be a factual statement.”
At the same time 45% of Republicans, against all evidence, believe that President Obama was born in Kenya.
How much more wacky can things get? No wonder Faux News is so popular.
Nature is inexhaustible
The most destructive U.S. myth is that nature is a horn of plenty that cannot be exhausted. American culture is based on the fallacy of growth as the highest value. “The strongest and most subversive ideology in America today,” writes columnist David Brooks is “the Gospel of Success”.
When the U. S. was founded in the 18th century, unlimited growth was both a plausible and a sustainable myth. The continent appeared to have unlimited land and resources (once those pesky Indians were killed off). Business interests were unrestrained in using rivers, lakes and the air as profit enhancing sewers. This didn’t happen only in the U.S., but the U.S. became the world’s leader in allowing private companies to pollute in the name of profit.
This destructive ethic is built into the American culture:
In The Affluent Society (1976), John Kenneth Galbraith wrote:
“The stalwart conservative who dares not venture out in the street at night, pays heavily for private security guards, thinks often about kidnapping and hesitates on occasion to drink the water or breathe the air must, on occasion, wonder if keeping public services at a minimum is really a practical formula for expanding his personal liberty.”
This is a key aspect of American political schizophrenia. It’s Constitutionally impermissible to have universal health care yet is Constitutionally permissible to start wars (start, as in America is the aggressor) that cost trillions, with no provision in the Federal Budget to actually pay for those wars.
Another self-destructive myth that American culture harbors is that they have a right to do whatever they want, even if it harms others on the planet. But the earth belongs to everyone on it, even though it has been arbitrarily and artificially sectioned off into nations.
No matter what Americans might say, The Constitution does not trump the rights of others on the planet. Americans do not own the earth. Many just think they do.
If America could be fenced off so that the harm they do to the environment only applied to them, they could, over time, learn. But when Americans pollute rivers, lakes and the ocean, those rivers and lakes flow into Canada and Mexico, and whatever they do to the ocean spreads from there. Air pollution is the same as contaminants float and settle on other parts of the earth.
One example is the declining health of the Gulf of Mexico, including the enormous dead zone off the mouth of the Mississippi and the increasingly rapid disappearance of Louisiana’s coastal wetlands—about 2,000 square miles smaller than they were 80 years ago.
As Americans continue to degrade and destroy the earth, they are destroying it for everyone. In their folly, they keep supporting and electing Republicans who are only out to destroy them, and everyone else with them.
Daniel Johnson was born near the midpoint of the twentieth century in Calgary, Alberta. In his teens he knew he was going to be a writer, which is why he was one of only a handful of boys in his high school typing class — a skill he knew was going to be necessary. He defines himself as a social reformer, not a left winger, the latter being an ideological label which, he says, is why he is not an ideologue. From 1975 to 1981 he was reporter, photographer, then editor of the weekly Airdrie Echo. For more than ten years after that he worked with Peter C. Newman, Canada’s top business writer (notably on a series of books, The Canadian Establishment). Through this period Daniel also did some national radio and TV broadcasting. He gave up journalism in the early 1980s because he had no interest in being a hack writer for the mainstream media and became a software developer and programmer. He retired from computers last year and is now back to doing what he loves — writing and trying to make the world a better place
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