Two years ago I was a neocon. I supported Bush’s war on Iraq and I called everyone who didn’t a liberal Kool-aid drinker. I voted for Bush in 2000 and I listened to Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity and just about any right-winger on the radio that I could get a four-word talking point from to use against liberals. I would say things such as “liberals won’t defend America,” “shut up and sing,” “freedom is on the march,” and “you’re a great American.” I supported the war at first because I bought into the lies and propaganda.
I no longer do. I’m a recovering neocon.
I was but a tiny wheel in the machine of neoconservatism, but the survival of the neocon agenda depends on millions of us tiny wheels, or it cannot go anywhere. Most of all the neocon agenda depends on a much bigger wheel, the media. For the neocon machine to roll, the big wheel of the media must pull the millions of tiny wheels without the tiny wheels knowing they are being pulled.
When the Bush Administration was found to be creating fake news propaganda for public consumption the media did not inform the public. When the Bush administration marched towards pre-emptive war with Iraq the media was a lapdog instead of a watchdog. When the Bush administration described the assault on the Iraqi public as Shock and Awe, the media used that phrase to scroll alongside the words “War on Terror” without questioning if the assault on Iraq had anything to do with terrorism. When the Bush Administration tore into the U. S. Constitution with the Patriot Act, causing the illegal imprisonment of American citizens while denying them counsel, the media acted more like a timid cocker spaniel than an aggressive Doberman pincher, and failed to defend a sacred American document. When the UK’s Downing Street memo implicated the Bush Administration as being hell bent on a pre-emptive invasion on Iraq before even going to the UN, the American media was silent and once again failed to inform the public.
But the tiny wheels still want to call the media liberal. The tiny wheels still want to say the media isn’t reporting the good things happening in Iraq. Most of all the tiny wheels do not know about the big wheel that’s pulling them. But now I do. That’s why I am an ex-neocon and I am in recovery. It’s more clear to me now than ever that the most American thing one can do is speak out against the actions of their country because it means you love your country.