A great way to attack somebody is to mock hypocrisy over a perceived strength. During the Cold War, anti-communist writers like yours truly would scribble something like this about the Soviet Union: “In the workers’ paradise, only the bosses have cars and a washing machine is your babushka (grandmother).”
In recent decades, Americans’ increasing boasts about our freedoms and our bringing freedom to the world through bombing foreigners’ wedding parties has occurred even as our actual freedoms have been vanishing faster than you can say “NSA.”
So leave it to the Russkies, who always have had a wicked sense of humor, to taunt loudly in RT.com:
Press freedom in the United States has suffered “one of the most significant declines” in the last year after sacrificing information to national security, with the NSA surveillance scandal topping the list of wrongdoing.
That’s according to The World Press Freedom Index for 2014 from Reporters Without Borders (RWB), which put the US in 46th place out of 180 countries, a 13-place drop from last year.
This time American misdemeanors were in the report’s chapter on “Information sacrificed to national security and surveillance,” which says: “Countries that pride themselves on being democracies and respecting the rule of law” too often sacrifice the freedom of speech to “an overly broad and abusive interpretation of national security needs.”
“Investigative journalism often suffers as a result” of a “disturbing retreat from democratic practices,” the RWB report said.
Countries ahead of the U.S. on the Index include the former commie countries of Estonia (11), the Czech Republic (13), Poland (19), Slovakia (20), Lithuania (32), Latvia (37) and Romania (45).
Others above the Land of the Once Free: Jamaica (17; mi criss, mon), Namibia (22), Ghana (27), Samoa (40; must be the football) and Papua New Guinea (44). Impoverished Haiti is just after its frequent invader at 47.
Russia itself is at 148 on the list. But then nobody expects much of the land of the ex-KGB. And the American police state is frighteningly more efficient that the Russian one.
Far worse than having always been a slave is to have been born free and now be enslaved.
John C. Seiler, Jr., writes from California.