••can ye pass the acid test?••

ye who enter here be afraid, but do what ye must -- to defeat your fear ye must defy it.

& defeat it ye must, for only then can we begin to realize liberty & justice for all.

time bomb tick tock? nervous tic talk? war on war?

or just a blog crying in the wilderness, trying to make sense of it all, terror-fried by hate radio and FOX, the number of whose name is 666??? (coincidence?)

Monday, November 14, 2005

there he goes again

There ought to be limits to freedom!—g w bush, 1999

i feel a little strange citing the same quote i used yesterday, but da prez is once again calling for a constitutional ban on flag "desecration."

his motive is clear: nearly all opponents of the amendment are dems, and bush's tanking popularity is sure to hurt his party, so he hopes to stir up enough imitation patriotism to keep the gop majority in congress after next year's election.

sounds like it calls for a samuel johnson quote, doesn't it? i don't think i'll give the usual one, tho. here are a few from the patriot:

• "...a man may have the external appearance of a patriot, without the constituent qualities; as false coins have often lustre, though they want weight."

• "A man sometimes starts up a patriot, only by disseminating discontent, and propagating reports of secret influence, of dangerous counsels, of violated rights, and encroaching usurpation. This practice is no certain note of patriotism. To instigate the populace with rage beyond the provocation, is to suspend publick happiness, if not to destroy it. He is no lover of his country, that unnecessarily disturbs its peace. Few errours and few faults of government, can justify an appeal to the rabble; who ought not to judge of what they cannot understand, and whose opinions are not propagated by reason, but caught by contagion."

• "The true lover of his country is ready to communicate his fears, and to sound the alarm, whenever he perceives the approach of mischief. But he sounds no alarm, when there is no enemy; he never terrifies his countrymen till he is terrified himself. The patriotism, therefore, may be justly doubted of him, who professes to be disturbed by incredibilities...."

• "A patriot is necessarily and invariably a lover of the people. But even this mark may sometimes deceive us.

"The people is a very heterogeneous and confused mass of the wealthy and the poor, the wise and the foolish, the good and the bad. Before we confer on a man, who caresses the people, the title of patriot, we must examine to what part of the people he directs his notice. It is proverbially said, that he who dissembles his own character, may be known by that of his companions. If the candidate of patriotism endeavours to infuse right opinions into the higher ranks, and, by their influence, to regulate the lower; if he consorts chiefly with the wise, the temperate, the regular, and the virtuous, his love of the people may be rational and honest. But if his first or principal application be to the indigent, who are always inflammable; to the weak, who are naturally suspicious; to the ignorant, who are easily misled; and to the profligate, who have no hope but from mischief and confusion; let his love of the people be no longer boasted. No man can reasonably be thought a lover of his country, for roasting an ox, or burning a boot, or attending the meeting at Mile-end, or registering his name in the lumber troop. He may, among the drunkards, be a hearty fellow, and, among sober handicraftmen, a free-spoken gentleman; but he must have some better distinction, before he is a patriot."

ok. it could use some cutting and rewriting and updating, but much of it fits dc to a t.

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