Favorite

1-2-3-4 ! … 

I've been disappointed at the relatively skimpy news coverage of the Bush administration's concerted effort to stifle dissent and suppress speech. Examples: Loyalty oaths to attend Bush campaign events. The sequestering of protesters in far-distant "free speech zones." Arrests of people holding protest signs at Bush rallies. Ejection of people who ask critical questions or wear lapel Kerry stickers to Bush rallies. Threats to fire government officials who speak uncomfortable truths. Outing of an undercover agent as political retribution for free speech. Last week, the New York Times reported that the FBI has been questioning peace activists and others about their plans to protest at the Republican National Convention in New York. The activists were warned that withholding information about planned disruptions could be a crime. The questioning was a transparent effort to chill dissent, which will be chilled enough by a cordon of police steel and other restrictions on protests. The Bush image makers prefer that no anti-Bush signs mar their camera angles. As yet, we haven't heard of FBI rousts in Arkansas. I invite the agency to drop by. I'd be happy to tell them I encourage convention disruptions. It's important to define disruption. I don't countenance violence or property damage. But I countenance dissent. I approve of the free assembly of tens of thousands of Bush critics, wearing T-shirts, waving signs, chanting slogans and otherwise doing everything they can to be seen and heard. Free speech is disruption to the Bush jackboots because the truth can get you beat. I only wish I could join the Billionaires for Bush, fun-loving pranksters who dress in white tie and evening gowns and arrive in limousines. They wave signs bearing slogans such as "Tax work, not wealth." When the Billionaires for Bush appear at Republican events, it sometimes takes a while for the real Republicans to understand they're being put on. Taxing workers rather than the wealthy is, after all, a central tenet of Bushonomics. You'd think, though, that protestors with names like Phil T. Rich, Tex DePore and Richard Dan Creases might arouse a little suspicion. In New York, according to their website, the Billionaires plan a croquet party Sunday in support of privatizing Central Park. Monday, it's the Million Billionaires March, formal attire required, to support favoritism for the corporate elite. A vigil for corporate welfare is also slated Monday and "ruly" bands of Billionaires will roam the streets, stopping for three-martini lunches. Wednesday morning, the Billionaires will yell at people in an unemployment line, telling them to get a job. A coronation ball is planned Thursday. If recent history holds, somebody will be arrested in New York for exercising his right to speak. With luck, this desperado will find himself before a court that still believes in the law, not one of Bush's "natural law" judges who hold the welfare of George W. and his cronies above statute and charter. Maybe the press would even cover such a case. Like Jefferson, I like a little rebellion now and then. If this be disruption, slap on the cuffs.
Favorite

From the ArkTimes store

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

More by Max Brantley

Readers also liked…

  • Bootstraps for me, not thee

    Mean spirit, hypocrisy and misinformation abound among the rump minority threatening to wreck state government rather than allow passage of the state Medicaid appropriation if it continues to include the Obamacare-funded expansion of health insurance coverage for working poor.
    • Apr 14, 2016
  • Trump: The Obama of 2016?

    Conner Eldridge, the Democratic challenger to incumbent Republican U.S. Sen. John Boozman, launched an assault on Boozman Monday morning rich with irony and opportunity.
    • May 5, 2016
  • Double-talk

    A couple of instances of doublespeak cropped up in Little Rock over the weekend.
    • Jun 29, 2017

Most Shared

  • So much for a school settlement in Pulaski County

    The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette's Cynthia Howell got the scoop on what appears to be coming upheaval in the Pulaski County School District along with the likely end of any chance of a speedy resolution of school desegregation issues in Pulaski County.
  • Riverfest calls it quits

    The board of directors of Riverfest, Arkansas's largest and longest running music festival, announced today that the festival will no longer be held. Riverfest celebrated its 40th anniversary in June. A press release blamed competition from other festivals and the rising cost of performers fees for the decision.
  • Football for UA Little Rock

    Andrew Rogerson, the new chancellor at UA Little Rock, has decided to study the cost of starting a major college football team on campus (plus a marching band). Technically, it would be a revival of football, dropped more than 60 years ago when the school was a junior college.
  • Turn to baseball

    When the world threatens to get you down, there is always baseball — an absorbing refuge, an alternate reality entirely unto itself.

Latest in Max Brantley

  • Football for UA Little Rock

    Andrew Rogerson, the new chancellor at UA Little Rock, has decided to study the cost of starting a major college football team on campus (plus a marching band). Technically, it would be a revival of football, dropped more than 60 years ago when the school was a junior college.
    • Jul 20, 2017
  • We're No. 1! in vote suppression

    It's not often that Arkansas can claim national leadership, so give Secretary of State Mark Martin credit for something.

    • Jul 13, 2017
  • Bangin' in LR

    About 2:30 a.m. Saturday, with the Power Ultra Lounge downtown jammed for a rap show by Finese2Tymes (Ricky Hampton of Memphis), gunfire broke out. Before it was over, 25 people had been wounded by gunfire and three others injured in the rush for safety.
    • Jul 6, 2017
  • More »

Event Calendar

« »

July

S M T W T F S
  1
2 3 4 5 6 7 8
9 10 11 12 13 14 15
16 17 18 19 20 21 22
23 24 25 26 27 28 29
30 31  

Most Viewed

  • Another Jesus

    If you follow the logic of Jason Rapert and his supporters, God is very pleased so many have donated money to rebuild a giant stone slab with some rules on it. A few minutes on Rapert's Facebook page (if he hasn't blocked you yet) also shows his supporters believe that Jesus wants us to lock up more people in prison, close our borders to those in need and let poor Americans fend for themselves for food and health care.
  • Pay attention

    If anyone thinks that a crisis with the Power Ultra Lounge shooting, then he hasn't been paying attention to Little Rock.

Most Recent Comments

  • Re: Another Jesus

    • And I quote: "Sounds like maybe some of those descriptors hit a little close to…

    • on July 21, 2017
  • Re: Another Jesus

    • Hey Bishop, when did God say "Grab them by the pussy?"

    • on July 21, 2017
  • Re: Pay attention

    • Well said. I believe that male mentors are another key way to connect our local…

    • on July 21, 2017
 

© 2017 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation