A Forum for Vigorous Debate, Cornerstone of Democracy

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A FORUM FOR FREEDOM OF SPEECH AND VIGOROUS DEBATE, CORNERSTONES OF DEMOCRACY
[For the journal (guidelines, focus, etc.), go to www.theamericandissident.org ].
Encouraged censorship and self-censorship seem to have become popular in America today. Those who censor others, not just self, tend to favor the term "moderate," as opposed to "censor" and "moderation" to "censorship." But that doesn't change what they do. They still act as Little Caesars or Big Brother protectors of the thin-skinned. Democracy, however, demands a tough populace, not so easily offended. On this blog, and to buck the trend of censorship, banning, and ostracizing, comments are NEVER "moderated." Rarely (almost NEVER) do the targets of these blog entries respond in an effort to defend themselves with cogent counter-argumentation. This blog is testimony to how little academics, poets, critics, newspaper editors, cartoonists, political hacks, cultural council apparatchiks, librarians et al appreciate VIGOROUS DEBATE, cornerstone of democracy. Clearly, far too many of them could likely prosper just fine in places like communist China and Cuba or Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and Russia.

More P. Maudit cartoons (and essays) at Global Free Press: http://www.globalfreepress.org

Saturday, June 8, 2013

Editorial for Issue #25 of The American Dissident


Democracy?  We No Have No Democracy!

Twenty-five issues of The American Dissident have been published over the past 15 years!  So, where the hell are the trumpets, laurels, and flamin’ kudos?  Not a damn sound to be heard.  Well, obviously that’s not why I’m publishing The AD.  I enjoy putting together each issue and of course get to include a lot of my own stuff.  And often there’s too damn much of that in a given issue… and that’s because poets, writers, and artists generally just ain’t interested in sending their stuff to a mag like The AD.  As for cost, well, I have to foot about half the bill for each issue.  Subscribers, to whom I’m ever grateful, pay for the other half.  Libraries have been next to impossible to attract. When Dan Sklar was inviting me and ordering 20 copies for his students that put me over the breakeven point.  So Sklar was a boon while it lasted, and I was quite thankful.  And of course I enjoyed speaking to his students.  Each issue costs about $450.  Anyhow, let the trombones blow and the jelly rolls fly!  The grim reaper is looking at me… and I’m looking at him… especially when I’m NOT slugging down the merlot… picrate… gros rouge. 

What viscerally outrages me is everyone being so easily offended. The Bill of Rights does not guarantee citizens from being OFFENDED.  And it’s amazing how many citizens don’t give a damn about issues of freedom of speech.  “Note the general reaction to the vast majority of Wikileaks cables, which are of the lowest classification,” wrote Diana West.  “There was and is a widespread sense that We, the People, shouldn't be allowed to see this evidence of instances of lying, ineptitude and concession by our public servants. A free people, I submit, would instead feel outrage.”  Well, I feel outrage! 

            Many, perhaps even most in today’s Nanny Nation, would like to replace the First Amendment with hate-speech and anti-blasphemy legislation and thus follow the dubious example of Europe and Canada, where a citizen can actually be tried and found guilty for speaking or writing a fact, as in  the Qur’an calls for the death of all apostates.   The offended group simply has to complain to authorities. 

              Another thing that viscerally outrages me is the fine art of demonizing ones opponents, which can be especially effective in keeping ones partisans uninformed as to the corruption in the party.  I’m a liberal; anything a conservative says is horseshit!  Or I’m a conservative; anything a liberal says is bullshit.  Just listen, read, or watch us and we’ll tell you what to believe and what not to believe.  And if you want to know what happened regarding Benghazi and that infamous video, since the machine is now a liberal one, the liberal media will explain that nothing at all really happened.  It was just politicized.  What a crock!  Do they think we’re all stupid?  Perhaps…

Whenever I bump into an Obama or Hillary worshipper, I’m left dumbfounded.  I sensed Obama was a charismatic liar from day one.  Bush, well, he was a liar too, but not so charismatic.  Why are so many Americans unable to sense the obvious?  How can they be so easily taken in by fake smiles, crocodile tears, and charisma?  How can democracy possibly survive when the citizenry is so easily duped?  Likely, it cannot and will not. 

On another note, it is not always easy to tap into baggage once one obtains it.  Most seek to get rid of it.  But I choose to create from it.  The front cover of this issue resulted from one of my recent pieces of baggage, that is, Sturgis Library’s permanent trespass order against me for mere written criticism, and my inability to obtain any justice at all.  The front cover depicts real community pillars indifferent to that authoritarian denial of freedom of speech and expression.  For the record, the two seated pillars are Karen Wulf (PEN New England) and Carol Rose (ACLU of Massachusetts), both of whom would not respond.  Standing and clapping outside the ribbon on the right is Cape Cod Times Editor Paul Pronovost, who refused to print the story.  Inside the yellow ribbon from left to right are Betsy Newell (lawyer and library trustee), Ellie Claus (realtor and former president of the library trustees), Anita Walker (Massachusetts Cultural Council), Lucy Loomis (library director), Daniel Santos (trustee), Ted Lowrie (president of the library trustees), Thomas K. Lynch (town manager), and State Senator Daniel A. Wolf.  Many others of course could have been added.   Perhaps it would be difficult to find a community pillar who wasn’t apathetic.  After all, free speech exists so that citizens can question and challenge the pillars.

Vive Pussy Riot (Russian) and Femen (Ukrainien)!  How I admire those feisty women fighting for freedom of speech.  They are the direct opposites of community pillars.  German Chancellor Merkel is fighting for the freedom of the Pussy Riot members serving sentences in a gulag.  But why aren’t our female leaders fighting for them too?  What the hell is the most admired woman in America, Hillary Clinton, doing?  Lying and denying and spinning, beggaring up the ladder of power!  What else?  And what about Michelle Obama with her $10,000 inaugural dress.  Well, what else is new, right? 

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