Tuesday, December 20, 2005
The Unbearable Blightness of Being American These Days
Now that I've taken my sneering little dig (previous post) at China's proclivity for cover-ups, let me vent about my homeland's, this shameful administration's current atrocities in this respect. Lest my own bilious prose obscure any sense I might accidentally make in my outrage, let me instead offer something I read today as an example of how elegantly and authoritatively this can be put forth:
...the painful truth is better than lies and illusions
so sayeth Bill Moyers in In the kingdom of the half-blind , his
20th anniversary address to the National Security Archive.
It has to be said: there has been nothing in our time like the Bush Administration's obsession with secrecy. This may seem self-serving coming from someone who worked for two previous presidents who were no paragons of openness. But I am only one of legions who have reached this conclusion. See the recent pair of articles by the independent journalist, Michael Massing, in The New York Review of Books. He concludes,"The Bush Administration has restricted access to public documents as no other before it."And he backs this up with evidence. For example, a recent report on government secrecy by the watchdog group, OpenTheGovernment.org, says the Feds classified a record 15.6 million new documents in fiscal year 2004, an increase of 81% over the year before the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001. What's more, 64% of Federal Advisory Committee meetings in 2004 were completely closed to the public. No wonder the public knows so little about how this administration has deliberately ignored or distorted reputable scientific research to advance its political agenda and the wishes of its corporate patrons. I'm talking about the suppression of that EPA report questioning aspects of the White House Clear Skies Act; research censorship at the departments of health and human services, interior and agriculture; the elimination of qualified scientists from advisory committees on kids and lead poisoning, reproductive health, and drug abuse; the distortion of scientific knowledge on emergency contraception; the manipulation of the scientific process involving the Endangered Species Act; and the internal sabotage of government scientific reports on global warming.
The entire speech is more than worth your while, if you care about the integrity and viability of the USA.
Thanks to Working For Change or publishing Moyers' speech; the National Security Archive's website is blocked from Mainland China.
Mainer, New Yawka, Beijinger, Californian, points between. News, views and ballyhoos that piqued my interest and caused me to sigh, cry, chuckle, groan or throw something.
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