We Are Bad For Our Health

We Are Bad For Our Health
by Richard Martin Oxman

Would a gruesome picture of a cancer-ravaged mouth with rotting teeth make you think twice about buying a pack of cigarettes?

My friends at Health Day News tell me that that’s the goal of new federal regulations expected to go into effect within three years. The rules will require tobacco companies to cover at least half of the front and back of packages with graphic — and possibly gruesome — images illustrating the dangers of smoking.

According to my buddies, U.S. regulations will be modeled after those already in place in Canada and other countries, and the warnings will be shocking: blackened lungs, gangrenous feet, bleeding brains and people breathing through tracheotomies.

If we (TOSCA, http://oxtogrind.org/archive/353) secure the Sacred Seat in Sacramento those images will be placed before the public long before three years from now. To help citizens to self-educate. Like in early 2011… when our twelve unaffiliated, non-politician citizens begin making decisions together as Governor of California — for the first time in history — in lieu of a single self-serving politician in that office (once again).

And long before our scheduled departure from Iraq and Afghanistan. Which is slated to be, if truth be told, NEVER. Not if you count mercenaries (Second-hand War?). Hey, even if you don’t. The lies about what we’re about are out. Unnecessary*, self-serving, illegal abominations abroad.

*Our interest in cheap oil does not qualify as “necessary.”

U.S. citizens — who supposedly take great pride in the “freedom” they have to speak out and take meaningful action — are complicit in our abominations abroad. [Even your well-meaning, sweet variety, doing good work, donating.] Abominations which culminate in more than 6 million deaths a year — with or without our acknowledged wars — more than the total deaths from cigarettes annually worldwide. Documentation upon request, but the reason this article doesn’t provide footnotes and the like is that I want to make a point about there being — for much too long a time now — loads of definitive scholarly “proof” in lieu of action.

But let’s focus here on our wars. Our suicidal confrontations. Our inhumane attitudinal set. Our compounding fear with fear so that we make life not worth living. The ecocidal activities of our military. The human suffering that goes way beyond the neglect of our vets, or the deaths of our soldiers. Beyond the cruel, unnecessary agony of innocent parents being separated from their innocent children forever. Beyond the irreparable damage done to innocence. Beyond the toxification of groundwater at home and abroad… in the name of fighting an imaginary enemy. Or, at least, The Larger Enemy. The Real Enemy. Like the people Obama plays golf with (http://www.zmag.org/znet/viewArticle/22444). The same people who Bush played with in some capacity.

Where are the WARNINGS AGAINST WAR? The gruesome images. The gruesome truth in everyday conversation with everyone In risky one-on-one on the street talk, in the living room talk during our leisure hours? Not in articles and lectures. That we have had for a long time.

This is an unabashed call for revolution. Not reforms which can only touch the periphery of our atrocities. Which allow our version of oil-based lebensraum to proceed unabated. Yes, Drang nach Osten.

Not the generic type of revolution. Not the kind that gets you slaughtered at the starting gate, at the barricades. But a smarter revolution. Starting with calling a spade a spade… and seeing where it takes us. Whether it leads to institutional changes?

Starting with stopping having personal popularity, a career and the like take precedence over participation in Holocaust-level horror. Starting with a fundamental criticism of public schools as the breeding ground for military participation, support for our aggression. Between parents.

Nothing less than calling the country cancerous will do. At each juncture. With every opportunity. Let’s hear our alternative media outlets label Obama as a murderer, not — in the name of unquestioned, traditional propriety, objectivity — President.

Now THAT’S grassroots!

About half the country might not be able to tell you how many days it takes for the Earth to circle the Sun (See http://www.counterpunch.org/bryce08262009.html), but the vast majority of our citizens are capable of caring about wanton murder. What goes against their enlightened self-interest.

The unrestrained greed and consumer voraciousness must end.

Whether or not it is ended with the self-education which TOSCA will encourage is neither here nor there. I am not attached to TOSCA, though it certainly could hurt no more than Michael Mann’s The Insider, and have a helluva lot more of an impact on society.

I am attached to the obligation to help others to see that The Emperor Has No Clothes, however. I am absolutely addicted to the idea of terminating our collective hypnotism. Not just the hypnotism which serves as a basis for Obama’s tenure. But the total termination of the trance concerning American Exceptionalism.

We are not Good People… if we are to be judged by our present actions, deafening silence. And American citizens — with their obliviousness to where their luxuriant lifestyle comes from — ARE responsible for what’s coming down. Ignorant or not. Not the Government. Not the Pentagon. Not the Corporations. The average U.S. citizen.

Where are the WARNINGS? When will we stop executing war in public places?

Each reader — if it’s not too presumptuous to suggest — should tell neighbors, friends and acquaintances NOT to smoke other people.

We are bad for our health.

Richard can be reached at tosca.2010@yahoo.com