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Muckraker Report
It's Almost Too Much

Samm Simpson

It’s Almost Too Much


March 13, 2007 -- The extent of news and information tumbles, engulfs and buries us like an avalanche. Scooter Libby, a premier inner circle man, found guilty of lying and obstruction of justice may be a recipient of a Presidential pardon.   New York Times columnist Frank Rich says, we can count on it.


The world has snagged s a glimpse of the Vice President's mechanisms of smear leaving Libby as the fall guy.  Prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald professed a "cloud over Cheney," and the venerable Congressman Henry Waxman, Chairman on Oversight and Government Reform who since 2003 has sought information on the disclosure of covert CIA agent Valerie Plame, has announced his intention to have both Valerie Wilson Plame and Fitzgerald testify in the coming weeks.


Will Vice President Cheney, increasingly beset by exposure and a clotting of blood resign?  How I wish he would be impeached first.


Regardless, it is imperative that the truth continue to be exposed  - as in "raw truth"  - about post war Veteran care at Walter Reed Medical Army Hospital and other VA facilities around the country where Veterans and their families have cried out for years to have streamlined claims and compassion worthy of their sacrifice, only to be rebuffed and scuttled about while our pork laden Congress feeds an insatiable military industrial complex.  A bill has been introduced both in the House of Representatives and Senate called the Lane Evans Veterans Health and Benefits Improvement Act which creates a tracking registry, provides in person mental health exams, ensures that all troops receive the same benefits and transition assistance and increases the time that Veterans can receive mental health treatment. Call or write your representatives and get them to co- sponsor the bill.


The bill’s namesake - Lane Evans  - served twelve terms as an Illinois Congressman and is well known for his outspoken support of Veterans from Justice for Atomic Exposure to the Persian Gulf Veterans War Act and so much more. Looking over just a brief list of the bills he introduced and the testimony he made on the behalf of veterans shows the many battles he did not win.


How is it that our government can be so callous to the suffering of men and women who are willing to give up their lives in service of that same government?   There are many tragedies that pre-date the current Bush Administration. How does this end? Refusing to deploy is one option.


Lately, it seems the information overload is almost too much.  Yet I feel a sense of duty to discover the facts, including the unanswered questions concerning 9/11, the dark side of military black operations, why soldiers are deserting, how the FBI gets away with using security letters illegally to demand information under the Patriot Act and why U.S. attorney's are being forced to resign.  (In addition to Cheney, Alberto Gonzales needs to be dismissed.)


Earlier this week a group of middle school students were waiting for their bus by our driveway. They were racing back and forth shouting,  "don't get arrested!"  I asked them if they knew what habeas corpus meant.  A quizzical look accompanied a firm "No."   "Well," I explained, "if you were to be arrested, the right of habeas corpus gives you the right to know why you were arrested."  Guantanamo Bay didn't ring a bell with these girls, nor did the Constitution or the Bill of Rights.  They were intrigued and promised to ask their teacher.  A couple of days later they got their answer.  The teacher said they'd learn about the Constitution and Bill of Rights in high school.  That was the end of the lesson. 


By then it may be too late.


So what do we do?  We each have a role in taking back our democracy. Run for office.  Lighten up on material items and do your best to get out of debt. Organize your neighborhood, plant a garden, ride a bike, get to know your neighbors and contact your Congressperson daily. And take a trip to the halls of Congress like Tina Richards. Stop spending money for anything other than the basic essentials. Drive less and less. Read more and more. Volunteer at a food bank.  If you're a praying person, then beseech the heavens that we do not attack Iran and that our President has a real revelation.  Talk about these sobering issues with all you know and turn off that television.


Plans may be in place for a false flag operation that could lead to martial law. Demand that Congress heed the voice of the people and end this war. Once we succeed, the real work begins to repair the damage done to our Constitution, our Bill or Rights, our economy, our schools, our culture, our sense of moral integrity, our environment, our health and our future generations.  


According to Retired General Tony McPeak, in an article called Grim Quaqmire from Rolling Stone magazine, we’re in trouble. He says the following:


"This is a dark chapter in our history. Whatever else happens, our country's international standing has been frittered away by people who don't have the foggiest understanding of how the hell the world works. America has been conducting an experiment for the past six years, trying to validate the proposition that it really doesn't make any difference that you elect president. Now we know the result of that experiment."


Yes, it does seem overwhelming, but the truth will set us free. Let’s seek it.


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