|By Sydney White|
It took me eleven hours to get to Florida in February -- three on the plane and eight hours being processed for security in two airports.
The Americans had just been deja vued through the Fifties' mantra of Duck and Cover, revived as Duct and Cover. Like voluntary hostages, they had bound themselves up with enough duct tape to circle the globe, and had then discovered that the informant who put them on orange alert had failed the lie detector test.
So when airport security asked me what I was bringing into the country, I was tempted to answer "A suitcase full of duct tape -- I hear you're out." But knowing that any form of levity would be met with the full weight of Homeland Security, I refrained. It was not a good time. I kept my mouth shut and it was worth the frustration.
In Florida, I knew that I had actually gone through the looking glass into another dimension.
I walked through puddles of French wine. I saw Bin Laden hot sauce on supermarket shelves. I heard CNN dubbed "the protest channel" by local media for having shown brief clips of the anti-war marches. I listened to days of propaganda by talking heads, who, like the Cheshire Cat, smiled through all of George's threats. Cities were all capitalizing on "terrorism," offering to be Homeland Security centers and bio-lab centers to get increased funding.
At the University of South Florida, tenured Professor Al Arian was accused of supporting the Palestinians, and under a sealed indictment, was removed from the school. When I left, students were still protesting the hatchet job and the professor was on a hunger strike.
Back home, I watched the U.S. performance at the U.N. Security Council draw to a close, and their presentation, live, of the 3,000 bombs, each 500 pounds, which they would drop on Baghdad. Our government, backing popular protest, declined the U.S. offer to accompany them on the killing fields. In fact, our representatives kept losing their patience and were voicing risque and earthy opinions within earshot of reporters and live mikes.
But our faith was revived. We cheered them on local talk shows and we laughed in the face of dire predictions from our own Fifth Column, the Alliance. Maybe it was "better to die on your feet than live on your knees."
We marched. Shock and Awe screamed down on Baghdad. We wept. And we marched.
Then Toronto police chief, Fantino, made a formal request to Toronto's City Hall for police powers to decide who will be allowed to organize or even attend a march or demonstration. He had just returned from Israel where he and others had trained intensively for some weeks with the Israeli Defence Forces. We had unwittingly paid for this Orwellian holiday.
Fantino's by-law would empower the police to issue permits, or not, and to "determine which group would be banned for two years, should the police decide that a group has 'abused' a prior permit." Fantino explained that this power is "so the police can manage demonstrations by anti-government, anti-establishment or ethnic groups that have opposing points of view."
The good news: the by-law did not pass. The bad news: they will not give up. At the council, I kept seeing Fantino in a ballooning red dress and crown, screaming: "All ways are my ways!"
Ernie Eve's Budget was proclaimed, not in the Legislature, but at the offices of Magna International, to "bring it to the people". I think not, and neither did anyone else.
Magna used to make auto parts. But by 1997, they had become a private "health care" company. Magna and many other Canadian and U.S. private "health" and drug corporations, were in attendance at a closed seminar in Toronto, in February1997. Though all reporters were forbidden entry, I was able to obtain a copy of the complete agenda. Along with corporate facilitators, there were people like our Assistant Deputy Minister of Institutional Health, showing privateers "how to piggy-back on our public health care system."
So Ernie, when you sent your message to Magna that a private corporation is more important than our Legislature, we read it too. We also know that your "capping" of our hydro bills is not cutting our rates at all. The amount over the cap is simply being shunted into a huge debt.
Health care and Hydro are on the same private back burner: When Ontarians can't afford to dry their clothes in the winter, we can just join Alice in the caucus race on the beach and run in circles till we're dry.
On the global privatization scene, the Bilderbergers are holding their annual meeting and Tea Party May 15-18 at the Trianon Palace Hotel in Versaille, France. Behind the usual closed doors, David Rockefeller, Kissinger and the Rothschilds (no mention of an Iraqi) will decide, among other things, the privatization of Iraq's oil and the new Middle East. U.S. taxpayers will unwittingly foot the bill for their officials to attend. Coincidentally, the meeting of the G-7 finance ministers is in Paris the day after, only a 20-minute drive. I wonder if they're painting the roses red in the gardens at Versaille?
SARS was another fearmongering device, according to Leonard Horowitz. But I do recall that last year China was given AIDS when the poor in several villages were offered $10 for each pint of blood by a private donor company. I wonder if those heading up the SARS War would divulge exactly what proportion of deaths from SARS were Chinese? How many viruses have been concocted so far, that can target chosen groups?
As Canada joins in on the terrorism drills with America, and their flawed missile defence (at a cost of billions), the best political satire in North America has been defunded of its $25 million. This Hour has 22 Minutes will no longer lighten the coming bleak reign of Paul Martin, the shipping magnate of Liberia. People cannot be intimidated nor brought along while they are laughing to split their sides at the Empire. But there'll be lots of Saturday Night Live to put us to sleep. Should we petition Mr. Rabinovitch at the Corporate Broadcasting Cartel?
While the invading army divided the spoils of war in Baghdad April 30, Conrad Black announced on CNBC that George Bush was "the best president since Lincoln." We went directly from the rabbit hole to the Tulgey Wood.
The Red Queen always tried to "do two impossible things before breakfast" but, being less powerful, I can only announce two impossible things.
The Aspers, who fire free-thinking reporters at the drop of a lip, will open a "Human Rights Museum" in Winnipeg. And George Bush and Tony Blair have been nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize. Should they win, how might their story be immortalized in this new "Looking Glass World?"
"Tweedle Dum and Tweedle Dee Agreed to have a battle?"
|A member of the Committee on Monetary and Economic Reform, Sydney White teaches "Studies in Propaganda" at the Free University of Toronto. Her current series of classes will be completed this month. The next series will begin in the fall. See the Summer edition of D&D for more information.|