One of the supposed attributes of a ‘right wing fascist’ is to celebrate and act as the perennial apologist for government police powers. It turns out that government agencies, bureaus, administrations, … have been steadily passing more and more criminalizing regulations, and setting up new armed assault teams to do their own enforcements. Today it is primarily the Left that celebrates the growth of unbridled government power against its own citizens.
Maybe there is a sense that we’re getting close to an over-regulated breaking point, and it’s best if the state were ready in the event of torches and pitchforks appearing in the town squares. On its front page the 17dec11 WSJ published a longer documentation of what’s been going on – ‘Federal Police Ranks Swell to Enforce a Widening Array of Criminal Laws’.
Since we are past the tipping point of an economic soft landing, there is every reason to believe that the state is bolstering its means and methods to corral us into manageable enclaves that can be tightly monitored. As documented, bureaucrats at every level know that they have to nip any hint of taxpayer revolt in the bud. In the least, their very livelihoods depend on it. Don’t be surprised if the counties’ building inspectors across the land will soon start packing heat, and have their own standby assault teams to enforce building codes.
That now sounds laughable, but we forget that what is happening today sounded more than laughable yesterday. No one would have predicted how the number of federal criminal investigations by ‘non-traditional’ civilian agencies would grow (see nearby WSJ graphic), along with the commensurate number of prosecutions. For the progressive elite this makes all the sense in the world – it controls an ideologically unreliable population while employing more and more of the grateful skilless.
The movie has gained cult status because the hero is a revolutionary who wears the now iconic Guy Fawkes mask, and finally supplies it to the residents of London in the memorable ending scene where the masked masses advance on a stupefied and irresolute military to bring down the tyranny. Today some occupiers don the same mask in a lame attempt to recall the heroism depicted in the film. But given who and what they are, these people make themselves look ridiculous.
All of this brought back memories of Waco and Janet Reno’s 1993 massacre of the Branch Davidians on the Texas plain (here). That was a supreme exemplar of how our Fourth Estate has quit the field as the watchdog of liberty. The docile press was kept a mile away from the Mount Carmel Center compound where the cult made its home. Not only that, but news rooms across the country made no attempt to contact authorities as the government’s siege progressed into an armored assault.
With my son-in-law one Sunday morning we called a number of news desks around the country ranging from the NYT to CNN to the San Jose Mercury News in Silicon Valley. Dripping with hubris, those manning the news desks told us that their outlets were on the case faithfully reporting every government press release on the situation, and that nothing more could be done. It was only when we got to the Mercury News, and asked, ‘Do you know what’s going on in Waco?’, that the assistant editor paused and said, ‘Come to think of it, no we don’t. All we have is what the fed’s information officer gives us.’ He was the only one who thanked us for calling.
Two years prior, I had been puzzling about the actual modern day function of the Second Amendment – given modern monitoring technologies and the overwhelming and growing power of government’s weaponry, what utility was left in the citizens’ possession of arms. It was then that the notion of ‘par force’ occurred to me as the Founders’ remaining legacy in the Second Amendment. I put my thoughts down in ‘Par Force in the Maintenance of a Liberal Democracy’ and revisited the notion in the 1apr08 post ‘Par Force - An Uncommon View of the Second Amendment'.
Witnessing our streets, today we are much closer to the portents of social unrest and civil strife. Candidate Obama foresaw the government’s need to reinforce and enlarge its ability to project raw force on America’s citizens when he announced his intent to form a civil defense corps which would be “equally funded” with the nation's military. As more guns are quietly being added to agency after agency, no one talks of that any more. We should not be surprised then if some day soon the feds announce a laudable cost saving measure to integrate all these separate assault and armed enforcement units into an integrated federal force to keep us in line ('For Your Own Protection').
In our somnambulance some still pay lip service to ‘eternal vigilance is the price of liberty’. I now wonder what is the downside for us to revisit the history of the USSR in the post 1923 era, after their civil war ended with the final defeat of the Whites by the Reds. Or to again review the mood of the German people in the years after Herr Hitler became Reich Chancellor in 1933. By the time both populations realized what had happened, they had no cannons left to soak.