The Blanket

The Blanket - A Journal of Protest & Dissent

Who's Afraid of the Big Bad Wolf?

Fred A. Wilcox • 23 June 2004

Remember that ditty? It was so much fun to chant when we were children. And those three little pigs that, except for the one who built a solid house out of bricks, failed to realize just how dangerous the big bad wolf could be. Moral to the story: Naive piglets (read people) get eaten if they (we) aren’t careful. Prepare for the worst because, in the form of a very hungry wolf, it’s coming your way.
I keep thinking about this morality tale as the date for George W. Bush’s visit to Ireland approaches. But perhaps I exaggerate. The resident in the White House really didn’t steal the election in 2000. The fix in the state of Florida really wasn’t in. Thousands of African-American voters weren’t denied the right to cast a vote for the President of the United States. The U.S. Supreme Court did not overrule the will of the people by choosing Mr. Bush to be the leader of the “free world”. Perhaps I am delusional, confused by books like Michael Moore’s Stupid White Men and Greg Palest’s The Best Democracy Money Can Buy.

Maybe I’m just a begrudger, whining because I didn’t get my way in the last election (I wanted a Socialist to occupy the big white house on Pennsylvania Avenue). Perhaps Mr. Bush is not the Big Bad Wolf. He’s just a misguided fellow who means well, but can’t think his way out of a wet paper bag and is surrounded by cunning little Quislings. I should stop exaggerating the threat G.W. poses to the world and accept that he loves cute black dogs and dutiful women named Laura. He wants to put America, which has lost three million manufacturing jobs since he’s been in office, back to work. He wants to defeat terrorism, by locking detainees from Afghanistan up in cages, denying them access to attorneys, and refusing to charge them with any crime. I should be grateful that Mr. Bush ordered a preemptive strike on Iraq in order to protect the free word from evil. He is a brave, insightful, Christian crusader against world terrorism, not some furry thing all dressed up like a world leader.

Mr. Bush and his army of machinegun toting bodyguards are on their way to Ireland. One can only assume that he will whisper anti-terrorist mantras in Bertie Ahern’s ears, raise a toast to victory in Iraq, and pass on advice about how to trick some of the people all of the time. Alas, polls in the U.S.A. show that more than half of the people now believe that the war in Iraq wasn’t worth the financial and human sacrifice, and that approximately sixty percent of Americans feel this nation is going in the wrong direction.

What, then, will George W. have to say to Prime Minister Ahern? Will he encourage Ireland to give up neutrality and start investing in fighter planes, tanks, and bombs, marked “made in the USA”? Will he encourage Mr. Ahern to cut spending for social programs, toss the homeless into the streets, and cut needy families off the dole? All this in order to demonstrate what Mr. Bush calls “compassionate conservatism”?

Perhaps George W. will point to some of his many accomplishments since he took (literally) office. He might tell the Irish people that he refused to sign the Kyoto Treaty on global warming, that he tore up the IBM treaty, that he withdrew the United States from the World Court, and that in order to demonstrate his contempt for big government he created the Ministry of Homeland Security, the largest bureaucracy in U.S. history.

Mr. Bush might give Bertie a few hints about how to create a benign police state, in which armed men and women can legally enter ordinary citizens’ homes without a warrant, stop citizens on the streets and demand identification if the police happen to feel, think, or suspect that a citizen is acting (looking) suspicious, tap citizens’ phones, intercept their email, and deport them in the middle of the night.
If Bertie Ahern is not unconscious from boredom by this time, Mr. Bush might tell him a few good jokes. For example, how he managed to lie in his State of the Union Address about the treat Iraq posed to the American empire. Better yet, how he managed to lie to the entire world (with a lot of help from Secretary of State Colin Powell) about this threat, how he has managed to keep the media from photographing flag-draped coffins of dead Americans, how he has kept the public from knowing how many thousands of young Americans have come home, are coming home from Iraq, legless, armless, blind, brain damaged, and seriously traumatized.

“I tell you, Bertie,” Mr. Bush will say. “In my wildest dreams I never thought I could pull this deal off. Never. They called me stupid, a knucklehead, a wooden Pinocchio boy. They said I was daddy’s little clone. A failure in business, a draft dodger, an All-American fraud. Well, look who’s laughing now. Maybe I didn’t do so well at Yale. Maybe I did get a leg up now and then from Papa Bush. But I’ve sent the military into not one but two countries and then talked about cutting benefits for active duty troops and their families. I’ve spent two hundred billion dollars in Iraq, and I’ve refused to be seen at even one funeral for an American soldier killed in action. I’ve said a million times that Saddam and Al Qaeda were peas in a pod, and I’m still in power, right here in the empire’s saddle.”

I don’t live in Ireland. If I did, I would be in the streets of Dublin when the cowboy from Waco, Texas arrives. I would challenge his grandiose vision of a world in which powerful nations need not abide by the Geneva Convention, in which powerful nations can hold innocent people in dog cages for years without due process, and in which a politician can lie to the people without fear of being held accountable for his or her criminal actions.

The Big Bad Wolf is alive, leaner and meaner than any of the empire’s former CEOs. I truly hope that the Irish people will deny this interloper the hospitality for which Ireland is renown. Moreover, when the dust clears and the Irish people receive an enormous bill for this imperial visit, I hope they will send it straight back to Washington, D.C., with a wee note attached.

“Don’t call us, we’ll call you. Our number? Sorry, but it’s unlisted.”





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The Blanket - A Journal of Protest & Dissent


All censorships exist to prevent any one from challenging current conceptions and existing institutions. All progress is initiated by challenging current conceptions, and executed by supplanting existing institutions. Consequently the first condition of progress is the removal of censorships.
- George Bernard Shaw

Index: Current Articles

25 June 2004

Other Articles From This Issue:

Who's Afraid of the Big Bad Wolf?
Fred A. Wilcox

Irish American Relations
John Kennedy

Challenging Collusion
Anthony McIntyre

Why Can't We?
Patrick Lismore

An Ego Trip for the Middle Class
Mick Hall

Palestinian Misery in Perspective
Paulo de Rooij

22 June 2004

Eyes Right
Anthony McIntyre

"Rumour Mill" - Safeguarding Nationalist Community
Sean Mc Aughey

From Alternative Press to Corporate Mainstream: The Case of the Andersonstown News
Liam O Ruairc

Taming the Celtic Tiger
Fred A. Wilcox

Weapon of Mass Destruction
John Kennedy

The Reagan Bitburg Doctrine
Francis A. Boyle

God's Command to Angels
Allama Iqbal
M. Shahid Alam (trans.)

Plan Puebla Panama And Free Trade - The Corporate Contribution To Low Intensity Warfare
Toni Solo


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