When Barack Obama ran for the presidency in 2008 one of his campaign promises was to close America's first recognized offshore gulag....Guantanamo. Whether you know it or not....main Serious media has little interest.....we've just passed the 11 year anniversary of the first official American gulag opening for business.
The president still maintains that his desire is to close the offshore prison which still houses 166 "detainees", many having been held there since the grand opening (How long does a person have to be locked away before he's not simply being "detained?")....Obama, 2012....
"There are some things that we haven't gotten done. I still want to close Guantanamo, we haven't been able to get that through Congress," President Obama said during an appearance on Comedy Central's "Daily Show"......"
One of the primary reasons Guantanamo has not been closed yet is this...
In 2009, Obama tried to move Guantanamo prisoners to the Thomson Correctional Center in Illinois before he was stonewalled by the House Armed Services Committee, which had a Democratic chairman at the time. Congress also passed a law that stopped the Obama administration from holding trials for Guantanamo prisoners in the United States by clamping down on the transfer of prisoners.
You might remember when all the very brave American citizens, the most exceptional and bravest citizens in the world, all became scared to effing death over the thought of moving prisoners from Guantanamo into stateside maximum security federal prisons....prisons from which no one....no one....has ever escaped. Too scary to even consider for the most exceptionally brave and courageous citizens on the face of the globe. Those who loudly sang along with the lyrics about "putting a boot in their ass"......shuddered and hid under their beds when word got out that Obama intended on closing our first acknowledged offshore, secret prison
11 years. For eleven years the great and unique "shining city on a hill",....the last, best hope for the world....the most free and just society ever known.....the only exceptional nation....has been displaying that shinyness, that bestestness, that exceptionalism to all the countries of the world by indefinitely detaining suspects without charge and without due process in Guantanamo...for 11 years.
There would be no dissonance if the United States did not actually claim to be a model of democracy for the rest of the less-exceptional world countries. You see, our model of democracy is so exceptional.....we often go to other countries, take Iraq for example, and kill a couple hundred thousand unexceptional citizens in those countries so that our brand of democracy, our model of freedom, can be duplicated in those places. The Codpiece called it "spreading freedom."
That great and marvelous American freedom is not like the freedom other less exceptional nations talk about. Oh, no. Our unique American freedom, the kind we like to spread like peanut butter...or napalm....over other less-free countries.....now includes the freedom to indefinitely detain (imprison) anyone the President says needs to be detained. And if that's not enough to convince you how unique and special American freedom is.....wait, there's more....that same exceptional President of these exceptional United States of America has claimed new Attila the Hun powers to assassinate anyone he says needs to be assassinated.....U.S. citizen or not.
That's some extra-special freedom. Custom-made freedom.....not some off-the-shelf ordinary freedom mind you......but exceptional, unique freedom.
America has embraced offshore indefinite detention centers....the Soviets used to call them gulags, probably because theirs were not as exceptional as ours. America has accepted and endorsed torture. We can no longer "risk" not torturing.....I guess, because of how special the U.S. is.
America has declared that we can invade any country without provocation, remove other country's leaders, kill anyone, in any country, and at any time....and the President, alone, gets to decide who. Americans have surrendered, willingly, their rights as guaranteed under the 4th amendment, which used to mean that government could not search and seize a citizen's stuff without a judicial warrant.
None of what I have mentioned is even debatable anymore. It's all part of the new post-9-11 paradigm. The new bipartisanship.
And that paradigm shift will eventually, undoubtedly be labeled "exceptional" and but another example of why American freedom is better than any freedom....ever.