The Price of Appeasement
No people in history have ever survived who thought they could protect their freedom by making themselves inoffensive to their enemies. -- Dean Acheson
I have a question for our press: Have you learned your lesson yet?
After all your kowtowing--all your groveling, your pandering, your agreeing to hold your silence, your maintenance of "respectability", and your deference--what have you achieved?
An appeaser is one who feeds a crocodile, hoping it will eat him last. -- Winston Churchill
In the end, having sucked up to and refused to call this administration on its lies and crimes, you have been eschewed and found utterly wanting by the progressives in our nation, who have instead turned to blogs and even to comedians to get news unsullied by your filter of appeasement. You lost not only our business and readership (at economic expense to yourself), but also our respect, as well as your own reputation.
The one sure way to conciliate a tiger is to allow oneself to be devoured. -- Konrad Adenauer
And yet, by insisting on maintaining your own independence and not become a wholly state mouthpiece of the Pravda variety as our fascist friends at FreeRepublic would like, you have found yourselves nevertheless the brunt of accusations of being the "liberal media." You are harrassed and spit upon at every opportunity by the rabid right wing. Anything to the left of Fox News has never been--and will never be--good enough.
Appeasers believe that if you keep on throwing steaks to a tiger, the tiger will become a vegetarian. -- Heywood Broun
And so here you sit--in the crossfire of the progressive left and the jingoistic Christianist right--feebly attempting to suck up to this malAdministration in the hopes of currying their favor and gaining respectability.
Oh, yes--some of you are just pure corporate shills, through and through, who find Bush policies to your convenience and liking. And yes, some of you are truthseekers who sometimes must make deals with devils to get your information. But in the end, even as you were demonized by the right and the left alike, you knew that you could at least depend on the cozy acceptance and respectability of the rich and the powerful on the cocktail circuit.
So I'm sure it comes as a completely SHOCK to you to learn that you are now the target of Bush's utterly illegal domestic spying program. Like Julius Caesar at his final, grand coronation, you stand--the anointed--having made enemies of all the good and decent who care about the Republic, and look at last upon the face of your eminently respectable, dearest friend. And when still the dagger gleams forth from the scabbard you cry, "et tu, Bush?" in palpable shock, as the final act that destroys the very essence of your being comes crashing down upon you, leaving you in a pool of your own blood.
Yield to all and you will soon have nothing to yield. -- Aesop
Yes, in palpable shock as, having delivered up your honor and committment to truth on the altar of that shimmering mirage of respectability that comes with acceding to the comfortable selfishness of rich and powerful--those very rich and powerful take your livelihood and eliminate the very basis and reason for its existence.
No man can tame a tiger into a kitten by stroking it. There can be no appeasement with ruthlessness. There can be no reasoning with an incendiary bomb. -- Franklin Delano Roosevelt
And so I ask again, men and women of the press: HAVE YOU LEARNED YOUR LESSON YET?
You stand at the brink of a precipice from which there is no return. Already this administration has curtailed the economic and social freedoms of its citizens--though masses whom you disrespect and who, in return, hold you in nought but contempt. And already the wildfire has reached your doorstep.
And it has done all of this on the basis of one--yes, one-- mindless act of terror masterminded by a medieval psychopath living among the rubble of Afghanistan, and who remains terribly, terrifyingly, at large.
If there is another attack, and these villains remain in office, it means the end. The end of you, and of all that you and we hold dear.
If Al-Qaeda succeeds in striking again on American soil, and shadowy nightmare of three more years of oppression by these criminal thugs remains unchanged, even the octogenarians among us will live to see the day that YOU, the free press, no longer exists in its current form.
It comes down to this, my friends in the traditional Press:
You will either make your stand now, or you will forever hold your peace--whether you like it or not.
The time for appeasement is at an end.