We Are Still Alive (Non-Hacked Russian Stooge and Terrorism Edition)

This is a version of last year’s January 1 article, updated to reflect the new fears of the World’s Most Frightened Nation.

I survived. America, and the world, and you, survived. We awoke the first day of 2017 to find that once again, using the extraordinary power of fear, we again held off the terrorists. And Putin. And Trump, nationalists, racists, hackers, alt-Right fascists, CNN, persons of all colors, genders, shapes, sizes, and goddamn religions.

Fear Classic: Terrorism

Hard as it is to persuade a constantly re-frightened American public, there have been less than 100 Americans killed inside the Homeland by so-called Islamic terrorism since 9/11.

Argue the number, hell, go ahead and double or triple it, and it still a tragic, sad, but undeniable drop in the bucket. Throw in a few mysterious “foiled plots” the government never seems to have many specifics on to share and tack on some more to the terror body count. No matter how hard you drive, you just can’t get the number of Americans killed or even in clear danger of being killed to a very large number.

And do spare the tired trope of “well, security measures such as at our airports have saved us from who knows how many attacks.” Leaving aside the idea that the argument itself demands a kind of negative logic (the “who knows” part) to even make sense, a test by the Department of Homeland’s own Inspector General’s Office, posing as travelers, showed 95 percent of contraband, including weapons and explosives, got through during clandestine testings. If a failure rate of 95 percent did not have planes falling from the sky, one must conclude security does little to affect terrorism.

CNN on the Eve told us that almost two million people were in Times Square to see in the New Year, along with 7,000 cops and 65 giant trucks filled with sand to stop the 2016 fad (actually two cases, in Europe) of car/truck driving terrorists. More Americans died of alcohol poisoning (booze terror!) last night than terrorism.

A shout-out here also to a benevolent Allah, who mercifully did not tell any terrorists that while Times Square was secured on the Eve, the rest of the large crowds elsewhere in New York were pretty much not, and a suicide bomber could have ridden in on a camel. Same as the days after New Year’s, when there is the usual lack of any serious security everywhere but at Trump Tower. Luckily ISIS couldn’t figure any of that out. Whew.

Our New Fears for 2017

And despite the new fears, actually two old ones recombined, our such as it is democracy is still hanging around. The new fears are quite creative, lopping together that old standby, The Red Menace and its global evil genius Vlad Putin, and “hacking,” the computer thingie that scares old peoples and is why you need to go home every Thanksgiving and reboot grandpa’s PC so he can play Solitaire again.

We endured the fear-mongering of the autumn that our Very Way of Life was at risk, because John Podesta’s emails were released and because the Electoral College was full of meanie rats who wouldn’t do something something Hamilton and elect Hillary like the script said they should. If only the Russians and FBI and Clinton Foundation and email server and Bernie Sanders and the nine votes cast for Jill Stein and the recounts that actually cost Clinton a few votes and 62 million Americans hadn’t interfered, we would be entering 2017 basking in the warm and eternal glow of Dear Leader Hillary Clinton leading us from bondage. Dammit.

Trump has also failed (so far!) to start any wars with China, Planet Mongo, or Russia by breaking up with Putin and refusing to give the ring back. He has not instituted Sharia law or martial law or the Nuremberg laws or rounded up people who write liberal tweets or made all LGBTQ people marry illegal aliens and wear boring clothing to NASCAR races. That may come, it’s early in 2017, but so far, not yet.

It is all panic-mongering, designed to keep us in a state of fear. Fearful people are easy to manipulate. So stop being afraid.

BONUS: Many have written in to ask what I get in return for being a Russian puppet. To be honest, not much, mostly just a hobby. I do get to crash on Snowden’s pullout when I’m in Moscow for reeducation sessions, and that saves me a few bucks.

Peter Van Buren blew the whistle on State Department waste and mismanagement during Iraqi reconstruction in his first book, We Meant Well: How I Helped Lose the Battle for the Hearts and Minds of the Iraqi People. His latest book is Ghosts of Tom Joad: A Story of the #99 Percent. Reprinted from the his blog with permission.

7 thoughts on “We Are Still Alive (Non-Hacked Russian Stooge and Terrorism Edition)”

    1. The American people have already bought into the propaganda by a 3 to 1 margin at least.
      And both the D party and the R party are solid against any idea of friendly relations with Russia.
      Just thought you ought to know Anna Mae because you sound like you’re naive enough to have hope.
      Don’t change sides when the big letdown comes dear!

      1. The Democrats have decided to outflank the Republicans and to even more to the right. Why? Because the left has departed the scene and just tags along. Even major “progressives” are following this line.

  1. You’ve done well, comrade. Surely they’ll award you the Order of Lenin this time. LOLOLOL!!!

    I say this stuff constantly to the scared sheep at work and online, and always I get lumped in with jihadis practicing ‘taqiyyah’ or I’m being paid by the Russians or Iranians or Libyan or whomever is in the news lately.

    1. I go occasionally and make a comment on some anti-Russian story in the WaPost and always get almost universally reviled as an agent of Putin. The trolls patrol many sites with that kind of nonsense. BTW, I am never abusive, always reasoned and so on and that makes them even more angry.

  2. Indeed! Great post. Why it is not obvious that our culture is filled with con-artists who will sell you anything whether it is sex. poisonous soft-drinks or any number of bogus products and services is truly amazing. A nation of chumps. When I tell people they are being manipulated (largely through the unconscious) they almost all scoff at the idea that they could be influenced yet, they are.

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