Monday, May 28, 2007

Each Step So Small

"What happened was the gradual habituation of the people, little by little, to be governed by surprise, to receiving decisions deliberated in secret; to believe that the situation was so complicated that the government had to act on information which the people could not understand, or so dangerous that, even if people could understand it, it could not be released because of national security...

To live in the process is absolutely not to notice it - please try to believe me - unless one has a much greater degree of political awareness, acuity, than most of us ever had occasion to develop.

Each step was so small, so inconsequential, so well explained or, on occasion, 'regretted.'... Believe me this is true. Each act, each occasion is worse than the last, but only a little worse. You wait for the next and the next. You wait for one shocking occasion, thinking that others, when such a shock comes, will join you in resisting somehow... Suddenly it all comes down, all at once... You remember everything now, and your heart breaks. Too late. You are compromised beyond repair."
German professor describing the arrival of Nazism in Europe to American journalist Milton Mayer.

From a comment by pilot to an article entitled Fascism and America in todays's UK Guardian.


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