Miriam Carey had been hospitalized at times for her mental condition. She didn't stand a chance against the trigger happy cops who, receiving no gunfire and spotting no weapon, chose to shoot her dead rather than shoot out the tires on her car. Her crime? Running away from police and ramming a Jersey barrier near the Capitol building, shuttered due to congressional intransigence over implementing corporate welfare health care. White House response to the police action: no comment.
According to The Guardian:
Police were hailed as "heroic" after thwarting the car chase. Congress afforded the officers a standing ovation as members lined up to praise their dedication and bravery. But it was unclear why police had shot the woman dead.As I searched for news about Miriam, I stumbled upon the fact that another citizen of the empire had gone down in flames at the imperial capital, setting fire to himself on the national mall, motive unknown.
|Source: AP "In this photo provided by eyewitness Katy Scheflen, people run to a man who set himself on fire on the National Mall in Washington, Friday, Oct. 4, 2013." via Al Jazeera|
The president signed the Pay Our Military Act two hours before the midnight government shutdown that ensued on the first day of October, the month of brilliant, beautiful leaves dying. The Pentagon rushed through multi-million dollar orders to the merchants of death who wine and dine the supposed representatives of the people in order to keep the filthy lucre flowing.
A budget is a moral document.
When one child in five grows up in poverty, the imperial government's response is to suspend the WIC program which feeds infants, children under five, and their postpartum mothers.
The lumpen proletariat, deranged by decades of hate talk radio and cleverly crafted disinformation, absurdly support Tea Party candidates who are sharpening their knives to carve up Social Security and Medicare as the price of re-opening federal government functions like food safety inspections.
A friend who lives near Acadia National Park in Maine commented on the eerie silence in place of the usual throngs of leaf peepers this time of year. I read of canceled destination weddings, canceled trips of a lifetime to raft down the Colorado River through the Grand Canyon. Such activities, while good for the dying capitalist growth-at-any-price economy, seem frivolous in the face of tens of thousands of Head Start children sent home and deprived of preschool with hot meals as a result of the government shutdown.
The last time I visited the Grand Canyon I heard tourists speaking so many different languages I could close my eyes and imagine I was on the streets of New York City, perhaps outside the United Nations headquarters. Where this week imperial servant Netanyahu spoke to a nearly empty hall of Israel's isolation, vulnerability, and continued belligerence in the time of US decline.
An educator I met yesterday told me that her daughter had been teaching elementary school in Israel for the last several years before succumbing to exhaustion and finding another, better paying job as a nanny for a baby. Her daughter had taught thirty 4th graders six days a week, working from around 7am to around 10pm in order to be a good teacher, for a salary that barely paid her bills.
Weapons of mass destruction and the price of eternal occupation vs. education and food. These are the simple moral choices humanity is faced with at present. Here in the heart of the empire we spend around 60% of each year's revenues on the military.
Until the collective wisdom of mothers and grandmothers is able to prevail over the death culture that the patriarchs have spawned, we appear likely to continue spiraling down toward a fiery end for us all.