"Is it not part of the national defense to make sure that your children are safe?" Boxer said at Capitol Hill press conference.This ranks right up there with the fatuous musing of another confused politician named George W. Bush."Rarely is the question asked: Is our children learning?"
Greed disguised as innocuous stupidity started the No Child Left Behind corporate march toward school privatization. Now, Boxer (one of that new breed of bellicose Democrats) wants to take the neo-fascist greed one step further by turning schools into militarized zones. Before you know it, our schools will be called Charter Re-education Camps.
Because when it comes to disaster capitalism overkill, the tragedy in Connecticut is beginning to rival 9/11 in its potential capacity to shred the Bill of Rights. Boxer isn't wasting time. She has also introduced the School Safety Enhancement Act, which would allocate up to $50 million for the installation of spy cameras and metal detectors in schools. Is our children learning yet?
Since there can never be enough flying robots crowding our great American skies, a special School Drone program to further enrich the defense contractors of the military-industrial complex is not outside the realm of possibility. Civil liberties destruction can begin early, as soon as nursery school, to keep us all safe. Students will be surveilled from above and below and within (as in TSA airport screenings). This will eventually help ensure that no independent thought is breaking out, and that no teaching outside the for-profit testing companies is taking place. Public schools already allow military recruiters to set up shop in high schools, even supplying the armed forces with the private home telephone numbers of potential war fodder. So it's only a hop, skip and a jump to transforming the halls of academe into full-fledged war zones.
Is our children learning? Is George Orwell spinning in his grave?
Last year's National Defense Authorization Act allowed for the arrest and indefinite detention of U.S. Citizens by the military. Although the National Guard is exempt from rules which forbid domestic action by the military, the presence of any camouflaged troops in schools could feasibly continue the subversion and work-arounds to the Posse Comitatus Act already being seen in the rampant racial and ethnic profiling being conducted by police agencies. Federal and state agencies theoretically could begin cracking down on schools suspected of sheltering terror cells and other criminal enterprises. Searches and seizures in the War on Drugs are already a reality -- could further draconian measures under the pretext of gun control and mental health screening be looming on the horizon with proposals like Boxer's?
The slaughter of the innocents must stop," she said. "We must keep our schools safe by utilizing all of the law enforcement tools at our disposal."
Boxer said the National Guard legislation is modeled after a program in place since 1989 that allows governors to use the National Guard to aid law enforcement in anti-drug operations. Troops could be deployed at schools, or assigned to desk jobs at police stations to free up local law enforcement to patrol schools.Not that our police forces aren't already militarized. The Department of Homeland Security operates a slew of "fusion centers" that combine the resources of the national spy state with those of the cops on the beat. A recent scathing report on the goon-cop partnership revealed monumental ineptitude and the huge amount of money wasted by a government whose function has devolved into spying on its own citizens even as it happily shreds the safety net and plunges us over make-believe fiscal cliffs.
For when it comes to spending money on the evisceration of human rights, the United States government knows no shame, and no boundaries. This country is the de facto partner of the gun industry. It's the largest arms dealer in the world, with sales of weapons to other countries actually tripling last year to a whopping $66.3 billion. The congressional cads and caddesses couldn't even be bothered to pass legislation that will keep the price of a gallon of milk from rising to $8 next year before they skipped town for the holidays. Yet they were almost unanimous in their bipartisan allocation of another $641 billion for the National Defense Authorization Act.
Got milk? Nope. But Georgie Bush is still waiting in vain for an answer to his plaintive question: Is our children learning?