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P.J. Crowley: A double cone of rightdoing, please, with exceptionalist sprinkles on top

30 March 2011 by Mike Gogulski
Posted in mind control, politics, prison, torture | 2 Comments »

Some of my allies recently celebrated now-former US Department of State spokesdroid P.J. Crowley’s condemnation of the treatment of Bradley Manning in custody as “ridiculous and counterproductive and stupid”.

The words were valuable, sure, and within the ongoing saga of Bradley Manning served to call out Emperor Obama to (simperingly, predictably) defend his administration’s actions. But I didn’t celebrate the man. Crowley didn’t say that the way Manning was being treated was evil, barbaric, unjust, unfair, illegal, inhuman, inhumane, sick, perverted, sadistic, etc. All he said was “ridiculous and counterproductive and stupid”.

Some of my allies took his statement to mean that Crowley has a good bone somewhere in his loathsome body. I knew better, but didn’t have enough information on hand to really, strongly object, until this:

From The Guardian:

Part of our strength comes from international recognition that the United States practises what we preach. Most of the time, we do. This strategic narrative has made us, broadly speaking, the most admired country in the world.

[…]

The release placed the lives of activists [ed note.: read: spies, saboteurs, agents provocateur, thugs, liars, assassins, arms dealers, etc.] around the world at risk.

Julian Assange and others have suggested that the release of the cables was to expose wrongdoing. Nonsense.

While everyone can point to an isolated cable, taken as a whole, the cables tell a compelling story of “rightdoing” – of US diplomats engaged in 189 countries around the world, working on behalf of the American people, and serving broader interests as well. As a nation, we are proud of the story the cables tell, even as we decry their release.

Much like the George W. Bush administration, Crowley has clearly divorced himself from the “reality-based community”. A little torture here, a few cruise missiles there, a wee bit of multi-billion-dollar bribery and smidge of rampant corporate imperialism over there, and we’ll just wrap that up in a delicious, low-carb, fat-free, totally non-threatening “strategic narrative” and sell it to the dumbass punters all over the world, with American Exceptionalist sprinkles on top.

P.J. Crowley spoke the truth. But he didn’t speak the truth some of my allies perceived. No, what Crowley said, very clearly, was this: “If the American government (and its fully-vested shareholders, who are not, incidentally, the electorate) intends to perpetuate the animating, exceptionalist mythos which supports its planet-dominating imperial aspirations, it must at least pretend in such a high-profile case that it cares about human rights, the rule of law, etc. For, if it does not, some people might, just for a second, truly perceive the maggot-ridden death’s head face behind the stars-stripes-uncle-sam-and-apple-pie mask, and we can’t have that.”

And from the Empire’s perspective, Crowley’s statement was not out of line. No, Crowley’s unforgivable sin lay not in his words, but that he let them be heard by the public.

I’m off to the ice cream shop. I hear they have a new flavor called “rightdoing”. I’ll bet it’s red, white and blue.

  1. 2 Responses to “P.J. Crowley: A double cone of rightdoing, please, with exceptionalist sprinkles on top”

  2. By B.R. Merrick on 30 March 2011

    If I were in charge of a highly lucrative system of coercion, one that was hugely embarrassed by its treatment of Manning, I would probably get one of my subordinates to say that Manning’s treatment was “ridiculous and counterproductive and stupid.” It would give the whole system an air of legitimacy. The mindless boobs watching the aptly-named boob tube would then tell themselves, “Well, at least there are people in government who care.” That, to me, is all that P.J. Crowley’s comments ultimately mean. I imagine that is also all they mean to him.

  3. By Mike Gogulski on 30 March 2011

    Indeed. He’s been pushed out of a function, not out of the system.


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