Well, it’s been a while hasn't it?
Gallivanting about the globe, harassing people, pets, and computers (and sometimes all three at the same time) ahhh...
As watch the Star Wars movies for the umpteenth time, I'm thinking, perhaps George Lucas in his stories has a social point that is applicable. The parallels seem a little too similar between what is happening now and the stories (specifically the prequels). So Star Wars fans, rejoice. I am on your side... ahh... but which side.
You don't follow? Ahh, then allow me to explain for a sec.
In the prequel stories, we have the emperor (excuse me, "senator") Palpatine, who is seemingly an innocent that is encouraged through a chain of events to assume the role of chancellor, then Supreme Chancellor, then as we know later, emperor.
Notions of the force aside, it’s been done by the careful manipulation of various groups and a lot of FUD ("Fear, Uncertainty, and Doubt" for you less acronym savvy people) being passed to the masses that just want to feel "secure" and "safe". So what does he do? He creates a war and works very hard to frighten the masses. These same masses through fear, allow him to "consolidate" his power so he has the authority to "protect" the people while lessening the bonds of bureaucracy under the "promise" that the powers granted will be relinquished once the crisis has abated. Sound familiar to anyone? (2006 Military Commissions Act, the P.A.T.R.O.I.T Act, the FISA Courts, and many many others)
Now let’s look at this a little more closely.
1. A war was brought to the people of naboo who then decided to appoint a more "forceful/effective" member to the senate. What we find out later was the war was instigated by Darth Sideous (i.e.: palpatine) who gave them a reason to create a separatist movement (i.e.: the way the republic works was wrong). But again, on the surface, everything looked plausible and reasonable. Bad guys over there committing "terrorist" acts, we don't know, so we have to lock it all down... "for the sake of the children" (By the way: When you hear these words from anyone, assume they are an alien and run fast and far from them as quickly as your legs/car/airplane/magic carpet can take you. The aliens are wise now; they don't say "Take me to your leader" anymore. These days that can be anyone).
2. This same "effective/forceful" senate member then quickly appoints other members to his cabinet to take over key roles in the senate. These same members all have connections to the "bad guys" (in this case the Trade Federation, etc...).
3. The war gets fresh blood to intensify by the creation of a clone army. The creation of this army helps to show the people that action is being taken, it puts their faith in their choice (i.e.: palpatine), but also serves to lengthen the war and drive people to the breaking point of wanting it to end at any cost.
4. As the war intensifies (which we know was through palpatine's influence and his cronies) people fear for their lives. So many relinquish their freedom and grant palpatine more power who then institutes "death camps" and mass society spying calling anyone with a dissenting viewpoint a separatist. The few that are above the rabble get enveloped into a senate that will eventually get dismantled. The ones that cheer the most for the new changes have the greatest the gain. (Producing the eventual Death Star, Genetic modifications for Storm Troopers, etc... (e.g.: Military and related suppliers).
5. During this time, their charter or constitution is re-written to grant further powers and to reduce or eliminate potential opposition. (e.g.: I just changed the law, so you see, I am acting within the confines of the law). This greatly lessens (and in some cases eliminates the senate in all but name).
6. Finally things reach a head where people, have been duped into believing that he is their only salvation, and so they turn over all power, converting the republic into an empire (singular rule vs. democratic). Sith influence true... but a smooth talker with a very persuasive argument and a scared population are pretty much what is needed...
So, now that we have established the timeline of events... lets take a little look at our situation:
1. A war was brought to the people and so they decided to elect a "forceful and effective leader". We don't know for sure if the elected official instigated said war of beliefs or merely encouraged it. What we do know is that Bush has been running quite a campaigning on "Peace and Security" (quite similar to what his father ran on I might add, but that is a different topic).
2. This same "effective/forceful" leader then quickly appoints other members to his cabinet to take over key roles in the government. These same members all have connections in some fashion to the "bad guys". (i.e.: Halliburton (Donald Rumsfeld) , "Big Oil" (Bush himself and Condoleezza Rice), other groups which provided arms and funding to the "bad guys" through various means. Sounds a little too close to a conflict of interest to me, but hey, what do I know).
3. The war gets fresh blood to intensify the battle by service recall notices to various members of armed forces and massive military spending. The recall of these people helps to show the people that action is being taken, it puts their faith in their choice, but also serves to lengthen the war and drive people to the breaking point of wanting it to end at any cost.
4. As the war intensifies (which we know part of which is due to the actions of the current leader) people fear for their lives. so they quickly relinquish much of their freedom under the guise of "preserving freedom" and grant the leader more power who then institutes "mass public spying, wiretapping, a "concentration camp", and calling anyone with a dissenting viewpoint unpatriotic and quietly threatening them which detainment (note: I said detainment, not incarceration. Detainment can be indefinite (we can hold you as long as we need to for your "protection" and for "evidence"), vs. incarceration falls under the "charge me or let me go" rule).
5. During this time, the constitution is being re-written to grant further powers and to reduce or eliminate potential opposition. (e.g.: If the law is changed to allow me to do this, then I am acting in a completely legal fashion). This greatly lessens (and in some cases eliminates the judicial and legislative branches in all but name)
And now boys and girls, we are at step six. If things continue to follow the path of these movies, it’s not going to look good as I think things got a LOT worse before they got better.
So I ask, do you think the
Jedi or Sith?
Well, it’s been a while hasn't it?