THE UNBRIDGEABLE CHASM OF DOUBT:
Why Faith and Government Don't Mix
We all have selective memories. From the relationship between two people to how each of us perceives the whole world, we see what we are able to see and tend to ignore those things we can't comprehend. We choose to see what continues to make us comfortable, and tend to avoid what threatens our world view. Often what we choose not to see turns out to be the most important thing of all, and we suffer for it.
And it just makes it worse when you know you saw it, and didn't do anything about it.
Two people can get together and each insist that one loves the other, but often neither can perceive what the other is saying, because their frames of reference are either too different, or something in the behavior of one sends one a signal that his words are not to be trusted, or she is not being sincere, even though both believe their sincerity is beyond question. From such dilemmas, wars and divorces erupt like poison mushrooms in a darkened yard. This unbridgeable chasm of doubt has been recently made vivid to me on several levels, though in the interests of decorum, I will say no more about this phenomenon as it has affected me on a personal level, except to mention that someone I loved whom I thought had abandoned me had in fact not done so, once a few misunderstood words were better understood.
On a larger level, I see a terrible legacy of cruelty reaching new heights and emanating from the inexplicable unwillingness of the American people not to clearly see to true character of events so disastrously unfolding before their eyes. The power of Old Glory waving in the winds of memory, perhaps, keeps so many from seeing so much, from truly believing that those we would venerate and respect could do harm to us—willing, pernicious, lethal harm. And it is precisely this faith in American society—this socially reinforced mythos—that allows rich criminals to get away with what they do, as they hide behind the very trust they exploit.
It is part of a penalty to be paid when you mix faith and government.
People who've worked hard all their lives and enjoyed the modest successes of home and family are not eager to denounce a system that has given them such a good life. And those who aren't paying attention—and today, exclusively watching TV means you're not getting the information you need—do not fully realize that everything has changed, that the admired American principles that always seemed to be envied by the world are not only no longer in force, but perhaps possibly never even existed at all.
Such is the case with many when you try to tell them that our leaders not only had foreknowledge but also helped arrange some of the most unspeakable crimes this planet has ever witnessed. Go ahead, just try to tell someone you think George W. Bush knew about the 9/11 horror in advance. Their eyes just roll, and they sputter, "Go live in another country and see what it's like." The facts you can muster to support such an assertion do not really matter to them, because they have chosen not to 'go there.'
It becomes a little less difficult when you talk about Iraq, and easier still for those with some familiarity with the Internet, because they at least have been exposed to alternative, more authentic viewpoints than those exclusively expressed on the corporate controlled propaganda TV networks. On TV there are no innocent Iraqi civilians (read: woman and children) being gunned down by panicked American soldiers, and no American soldiers getting sick and preparing to die from the radioactive ammunition their government furnished them and told them was safe.
But 9/11 is one of those things that it is impossible to communicate to those many naive souls who just cannot believe that the leaders of this country would countenance something so repugnant merely to steal a few billion dollars. Many of you have doubtless heard such distressed responses. "Oh, they would never do something like that. They could never get away with it."
Equally, many of you doubtless know or sense that these same leaders have very probably perpetrated these very deeds, and you realize in your heart that their pious phrases of patriotism are just so much smoke to screen the cash they pocketed for participating in the deadly deceptions.
But for most to seriously consider that the terror tragedy of 9/11 was a staged event devised to usher in a new era of corporate plunder throughout the world requires a total reevaluation of everything they've ever known, or thought they knew. It requires changing your life. And most people, no matter how poor or how screwed by corporate downsizing and/or emigration to cheaper foreign labor markets, simply refuse to change. It's just too difficult. As long as they can keep food and a roof, the possibility that their leaders would do such a thing remains beyond the realm of probability, beyond the reach of their comprehension, beyond their willingness to see.
And you can hit them over the head with evidence—why did the president block an independent investigation? why was the World Trade Center evidence carted off before it was examined? why was the report of the official probe a whitewash that didn't ask any of the basic questions? why did we go to war in Afghanistan and Iraq? why were there so many lies told about it?
These are all questions that the government is afraid to answer, and that people are mostly afraid to ask. Because to ask these questions about the suspicions of criminal behavior of their government requires asking the same questions about their own criminal behavior—how their conspicuous consumption of gasoline, electricity, and other resources destroys the lives of other people and other species all over the world.
You don't have to think about it too long before you realize—if you're perceptive enough—hat the behavior of American consumers (and consumers in other high-tech countries, too) is responsible for much of the serious raping of the planet that is now taking place, and threatening all our lives.
And that is simply too much for most people to consider, busy as they are with their meaningless trivialities cultivated by television that ultimately mean nothing to anyone.
It seems to me that a great opportunity has been missed in a potential investigation of what actually happened on September 11, 2001. And I'm not talking about the coverup, specifically, although that is certainly a great opportunity that has been missed. Now we are realizing that the 9/11 treason and murder probably will remain unsolved for all time, just like the Kennedy assassination.
When we discovered that the highest officials in the United States not only knew 9/11 was going to happen (and that is a certainty with thousands of footnotes), but profited mightily from that knowledge, this revelation could have offered a tremendous window into the political behavior of the American nation. And in analyzing that political behavior, we could have seen how throughout the 20th century—and for some years before that—it has been the movers and shakers in the United States who have engineered all the wars, all for the profit of those cagey industrialists, bankers and investors who saw monstrous rewards to be made by fomenting strife and furnishing the methods and opportunities to reap them.
If we could have blown the lid off the inside job of 9/11, identified the perpetrators and made our charges stick, it would have given us a window to track down who profited from the military assaults on all the countries we convinced our citizens we were in to save democracy, or to repel a rebel threat. Perhaps scariest of all, we could have seen how Germany had developed a barter economy prior to World War II that excluded Western banks from their dealings, or that Japan was forced into attacking us because a few bankers cut off their line of credit, and therefore their supply of oil.
We could have seen how we killed all those people in all those countries just to make a few bucks, and sacrificed not a few of our own good sons in the process.
A legitimate probe of 9/11—not like the sham that was just perpetrated that didn't address any of the really major questions—would have shed light on the corporate powers that control the media and the White House, and maybe—just maybe—would have taken that large step to show the deluded American populace that we are neither a democracy nor a republic, that we are a corporate-controlled police state whose leaders are savaging their own citizens simply to make more money for themselves and the rich friends who put them in office in the first place.
But in the unbridgeable chasm of doubt, those are questions Americans remain afraid to ask. No single presidential candidate has asked a single legitimate question about who made the money off 9/11, no single presidential candidate is talking about how depleted uranium and spurious untested vaccinations are squandering the lives of our own military personnel, no single presidential candidate is demanding that America be returned to the people who own her—namely us.
Most average citizens are simply afraid to contemplate such a question out of fear of reprisals by authorities (instances of which are already numerous) or other social repercussions (such as loss of job).
Patriotism in America is now the province of outright fools and those who are paid handsomely to mouth the phony slogans while they fix elections, pander to Israel and keep feeding the armsmakers while our bridges crumble, our manufacturing jobs disappear overseas, our food is poisoned, and our savings are taken by rich power czars who confer immunity on themselves because they contribute large sums of cash to those who make our laws.
It's hard to be patriotic in a country that has become completely corrupt, and an undeniable menace to all life on this planet. It's hard to be patriotic in a country that cynically kills its own soldiers after lying about the reasons it went to war. It's hard to be patriotic in a country that has exchanged truth for cash, and woe to you if you don't have the latter.
But most Americans have chosen not to see this. Instead, they watch the TV lies, attend the flag-waving rallies, and hope all these crises will blow over and the land they knew will be returned to them. Well, go ask a Palestinian how that strategy works!
Beyond affection between two people, and out past the way one looks at the world, there is a third aspect of the unbridgeable chasm of doubt that affects us all, in one way or another. That, of course, involves matters of faith and spirit.
I sometimes think that because we are asked to believe the unbelievable in matters of religion, and because we tend to venerate the (usually) men who act as intermediaries between us and the divinity, that we sometimes get confused about the veneration of our secular leaders. Many who practice the various religions feel that their holy men should not be challenged, and some of those doubtless extend that courtesy to their leaders.
That could be another reason why so relatively few are willing to challenge the 9/11 lies, as some who wrap themselves in red, white and blue assert. Certainly leaders of most states never fail to invoke the deity as a reference for the integrity of their proposals. Some of the more demented evangelical denominations even insist that our president's cynical invective is holy unto itself.
In our own case here in America, George W. Bush recently embarrassed himself and all Americans by claiming at a forum in Israel that it was God who had commanded him to smite the Afghanis and the Iraqis, and now he was going to do it again (and surely again and again) against various Islamic countries. Hopefully, anyone who read this story would realize the insanity about mixing God with world affairs, but unfortunately a majority of the world's populations do not, and Bush's rhetoric sounds too much like political leaders of other faiths who make similar claims about other targets.
You can tell, if you are capable of listening with any degree of skepticism and discernment, that any political speech that is tied to supernatural sanctions is false on its face, although it is a tribute to the degree of decline in the intelligence of the American populace that much political invective is now infused with these approvals of God, not the least of which is all this faith-based chatter that dominates the Bush administration's murderous lies.
You remember our Founding Fathers, the ones so speciously decommissioned by Bush's Patriot Act. Separation of church and state. There was a very good reason for that Constitutional precaution.
While in matters of the heart or of the soul, faith and spirit are indispensable components of the feelings that lead to happiness and love, that lead to a conquering of the unbridgeable chasm of doubt. How else to bridge the unbridgeable but by the great leap of faith and trust?
But in matters of government, faith is a liability, a danger, that always leads to deception and discrimination. One need only look at the current headlines about Iraq lies and 9/11 coverups to realize that this is an eternal truth.
The unbridgeable chasm of doubt is growing between two forces in the world: those who believe that money is the measure of all things and that caring about the welfare of others is a needless distraction from the true task of accumulating the most toys and the greatest amount of leisure time—and those who believe that love and compassion are the most important elements of our transit through this existence, that humanity and selflessness are the greatest assets of our species, and that stealing from others is only harming yourself.
This chasm is growing. War has been the only solution to it. Meanwhile, all around us, the world continues to burn, leaving the concept of love mere dust in the wind, ashes in the gutter of a hollow and pornographic civilization that clearly does not deserve to survive.
And those perched on the precipice of this unbridgeable chasm of doubt are fast approaching the time when they will be forced to make the leap. They are fast reaching the point of realizing that it is too late to do what they should have done back there along the trail when they realized what they should have done, but cash got in the way.
Speak out now. We're running out of time. Don't make your solution some religious fantasy that helps no one but yourself and excludes others from your prayers. It's time to get real. Just look at what the unreal has done to us all.
John Kaminski is the author of "America's Autopsy Report," available at johnkaminski.com/. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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This story was published on September 18, 2003.
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