Remember how we felt? Words About the coming fascism from my father Gil Franco


Note: Although Gil Franco passed away in 2006, it is obvious that we as a country are still dealing with the ‘fascism’ that we were during the reign of ‘King George.’  Read this and ‘remember how we felt.’

Now… think about our current struggle for ‘freedom of speech‘, (Assange, Jeremy Marks, so many others), ‘truth’, (Assange, our war engagement), and ‘transparency.‘ (there are too many examples to place in parenth!)

The ‘slowly, but surely ‘part,  of this essay…was so prescient.

Read on…

Find Gil’s (My dad’s) writing still posted on http://progressivewritersbloc.com

On Sunday March 5 while watching CNN a story appeared that certainly got my attention. It was about a high school teacher in Aurora, Colorado who was suspended (lucky for him, with pay) when he asked his students if they thought there were any similarities between President George W. Bush and Adolph Hitler. (By the way, just Google “Bush Hitler Similarities” and you will find several lengthy lists of similarities various people have compiled.) One of his students, a fifteen year old boy, “just happened” to record this question on his hand held recorder. The teacher, Jay Bennish, did not deny that he asked the question, but he emphasized that he posed his remark as a question, not a statement, in order to stimulate a dialog with his students.

I agree with Mr. Bennish because grappling with controversial issues is supposed to be part of the educational process. A teacher is supposed to get his students to think, isn’t he? Though this incident has been a mere blip on the radar screen, thus far, I find it disturbing (to put it mildly) in the sense that the teacher’s first amendment right (the freedom of speech provision) was violated. Quite frankly this doesn’t surprise me at all. Why? Because this administration has slowly but surely squelched, put down, denied, pressured, or humiliated anyone who disagrees with them. (Hey! That’s a similarity with Hitler right there, isn’t it?) They’re denying us, Americans, our constitutional rights slowly but surely.

What’s almost laughable is that Bush and his partners in crime have the audacity, temerity and unmitigated gall to state (ad nauseam) that they want to spread freedom and democracy around the world while at the same time they’re taking our freedoms away here at home! They must think we’re all just a bunch of brainless morons. Well, I have news for the Bush regime’s boot-lickers and hangers on. There are some of us in this great country of ours who are waking up to the grim reality that confronts us here in the United States of America. There are many of us who do not fall for Bush’s lies, and double talk. We are not part of his so-called base; huge and powerful corporations (foreign and domestic), the oil industry, pharmaceutical firms, the United Arab Emirates (U.A.E.), Halliburton, etc. Yes, it’s incumbent on those of us who know a con artist when we see one to do everything in our power to stop the theft of our constitutional rights. No one is going to do it for us; it’s up to us. The future is now. Tomorrow will be too late. So let’s stop complaining and start rolling NOW!

Assange latest: “The Truth Shall Set you free.” Why is the U.S. suppressing Freedom of Speech?


Tom Dickinson has nailed it.  He asked, “what would the reaction of America be if we substituted Julian Assange for Bill Keller?”  It would be outrage at the treatment being dealt.  Dickinson’s cut straight to the heart of what is really bugging me the Wikileaks affair on several different levels.   See the article here:  http://tinyurl.com/2epj5z8

First of all, casualties of war or ‘consequences of war’ don’t seem to be such a hard pill for our Government.  They should be, but they aren’t.  Our government openly admits that there are going to be casualties of war on both sides and that we will make Iraq into a democracy even if it kills them….and us.  Do we have a clear plan? Noone’s really sure.  Is it “winnable?”  It doesn’t look like it, and many are saying it is not.  By the way what does “winnable” mean if you’re just supposedly trying to “bring democracy” to a people.  Oh yes, there are those that don’t want us to come in and re-shape things, shave off members of families  because we ‘suspect’ that there’s a member who’s standing in the way of democracy. (Usually those house raids don’t find the right guy), that’s the testimony of several different soldiers.  Yes, I am reading Amy Goodman’s “Breaking the Sound Barrier” I’ll cite the specific articles that these statements come from later in the blog.  We’re talking real testimony from soldiers participating in those raids.  There is testimony all over that book from so many soldiers that say that body counts are wrong.  Very wrong.  The military has it’s own counting system.  They count the way the numbers will look “good” in the media.

Why do we not see coffins coming back to the states?  There was more transparency in our media during the vietnam war!  Why do we not see the costs of war on television?  We basically have a Disney-fied version of our ‘patriotic’ war on television!  When journalists are unembedded, they are free to report on what they see in the places they travel.  They return objective impressions.  Independent to the military view.  Now more than ever we need the truth.  The American people are finally realizing that we are being fed. We are being fed a ‘version’ of the war, an edited war.  What is on the cutting room floor is important.  It is not unlike a movie that has been edited and when the outtakes and other scenes are added, we come away with a completely different story.  What they are leaving out is the sheer increased numbers of dead, the uncountable, the unwanted counts.  They are leaving out the impetus for their deaths on both sides.

The Dalai Lama said that war is outmoded.  …We are so interconnected in our modern world that it does not make sense.  The only sensible tactic when there is discourse it dialogue.  We do not need war anymore.

Julian Assange and his contacts have only unearthed truths.  Be they big or small.  ALL TRUTH IS IMPORTANT.  The United States is afraid of the truth supposedly because it MIGHT cause casualties.  Yes Assange intentionally put truths into the public domain and I applaud him for it.   And by the same token (just turn the coin over), The U.S. is killing people with lies!  and has caused more than 4,000 U.S. casualties alone since waging this war based on lies to the American People.  So who is more dangerous?  The U.S. is branding Assange a terrorist though the consequence of his organizations leak of information has not to date brought death! and the U.S. in instituting a war on lies has brought death.  How is Assange’s ‘war for truth’ that has had no known deaths or casualties, worse than the United States’ war on terror? which has had more than 4,000 deaths and those are just U.S. deaths?  Iraqi deaths number 650,000.  (Terrorist / insurgents / freedom fighters / civil fighters / neighborhood guys and of course innocent men women and children.  If I remember correctly a “terrorist” is one that creates terror and brings death.  So…Is the United States Government more a terrorist organization?

Obama and the others have said (wrongly) that all of the leaked information so far was low level insignificant information, but if then, WHY…the uber-China-Russia-type of man-handling of Assange (and more importantly BRADLEY MANNING) been so gulag-ish? The U.S. clearly sees this information as important.  What is contained? only 4,000 of 190,000 documents have been looked at.  What is the U.S. so afraid of?  Clearly this shows that the truth is even more important than we can imagine.

We can look in part to the Daniel Ellsberg “Pentagon Papers” for a taste of something similar and not find the same reactions from the government.  Why is that?

We can ask about Freedom of the Press, and we can talk about how The Press is the eyes, ears and watchdog of our country, the world and it’s leaders.  This is the entire reason for the existence of the Press!  We can also ask our selves the same questions that Tom Dickenson did in his article for Rolling Stone, which was uploaded or penned? on December 15, 2010.  Tom asks us whether Americans would find the same treatment of Assange unpallatable if it were say….Bill Keller from the NY Times.  I’m not sure there wouldn’t be somewhat of a riot in the streets!~at least in New York and soon spreading from every mouth that believed and spoke about Free speech and Freedom of the Press, not ending until the entire of America was in a national uproar.

The United States’ reaction has been nothing short of Orwelian.  Added to the illogical reaction to Julian Assange’s unearthing of truth documents (whether they be ‘dangerous” – which again they have not yet proved to be), is the inhumane treatment of Bradley Manning.  Manning  is being held in solitary confinement for the last seven months BEFORE being proven guilty.  Certainly….NOT the American way!  What is going on in our country?  Why are we all the people  sleeping?  We should be OUTRAGED and clearly 68% of our country is still quite snowed.  This is a war on truth.  The truth will cost less than the lies and besides we were taught from the day we were born to stand up for the truth. Oh, yah, and there was something else I heard along the way, “the truth shall set you free.”

The short list of some the “sore spots” that have been uncovered by the “Wikileaks” papers.

*Pakistan is funding the Taliban  (Oh yah, we’re giving money to the ISI – the Pakistan guys, so it sure looks like we’re fighting ourselves), in my book that’s a big unearthed and very important truth!

*There are many more innocent women and children being killed in Iraq than the random here and there accidents, even intentional killings.  (this is another important truth! that’s been unearthed!)

*There is video of intentional killings of innocent men, women and children! (see collateral murder), which shows in full audio and video the soldiers fully aware that these were not ‘targets’ and killing them anyway.  Again, to me, these truths are important.  Doing the right thing is important.  Upholding truth and justice used to be our tagline! This is The United States of America! and to me ‘fighting for my country’ means telling the truth and doing the right thing.

*Yes, there is backbiting information between ambassadors calling eachother creeps and whatnot, but why has Obama chosen just to cite THOSE truths and minimize them? He has not spoken to the unearthed collateral damage, or the innocents killed, or the biggie that we may even be fighting against ourselves!  NO WONDER it doesn’t seem winnable!

~Chrissylong

Julian Assange: what is the value of truth?


My husband was making the assertion that Julain Assange of Wikileaks, since he had supposedly succeeded in putting many lives in danger, If not causing potential death in the future as a result of the revelations derived from his leaked documents should at the least be imprisoned. This is the feeling of the U.S. Government and others which has historically used “secret” and “covert” dealings in order to ‘further their objectives around the world’. I understand this. I also understand that these objectives, projects, etc., are supposedly benefit the American people, the economy, or domestic or foreign relations. We have long accepted that this is the case. But should we?

I still am not sure I agree with the opinion that it is wrong to uncover ‘national secrets’ I reserve my opinion because we as a people need to find the answers some philosophical questions about how important truth is, how important ‘secrets’ are, and what are the explicit and excepted reasons we would forgo ‘knowing truth?” is it right to lie, cheat, kill, deceive in order to bring a favorable outcome to a nation of people? Is it right to suppress truth? If it is okay to create, foster and perpetuate war (which we accept will inevitably kill many in it’s very righteous and inevitable path) then why is it not okay to uncover truth at the same costs? We accept our nation’s less than palatable actions of destruction in the interest of ‘supposed greater good’ every day. But why is it NOT okay to uncover TRUTH about these actions for Americans and world citizens if it also will impart some human damage? Uncovering truth is ALWAYS for the greater good. What then is the value of truth? and, how do we as American’s define truth? Is truth also ‘good?’

We the people should be the eyes and ears of our government. We are not. We have been given a small role. A special tunnelvision. We are fed the information on what ‘the issues’ are. We are given ‘the chance’ to vote. But the government is working for us! We should DEMAND a truthful government in all respects. Our forefathers deemed that these “just powers” be derived their powers from the consent of the governed! It’s in black and white (err…sepia and parchment).. in our beloved Declaration of Independence!! We have the power to demand the truth in the same way that the government feels it has the right to impart lies, secrecy and use covert measures in the supposed interest of national or world benefit.

One of the most common life lessons taught to American Children universally is: “the end result DOES NOT justify the means.” What we teach them is ‘the way you get to an outcome must be a noble, correct, fair and impartial endeavor, OR…the end result is corrupt!!!

Shamefully, our government works this age-old adage the opposite way. “If you need a SPECIFIC OUTCOME it DOESN’T MATTER how it is achieved AS LONG AS YOU GET THE DESIRED RESULT !!! We saw this in Guantanamo, we saw this in the video that Mr. Assange’s contacts revealed. (collateral damage in Iraq) and in too many other incidents throughout history.

For these reasons above I believe the condemnation of Mr. Assange should be withheld. Where is the debate? What is the value of truth?

-Chrissylong