Been rereading Marvin Harris over the weekend and was struck by the similarities between his explication of the Inquisition's pursuit of witches and the methods and arguments of the Bush GWOT. As you recall, Harris saw the pursuit of witches as a ploy by the church and the aristocracy to counter popular uprisings by the lower classes in attempts to reclaim power over their lives and expropriated property. By and large, the torture and oppression worked.
While the instruments of the GWOT--imprisonment, Star Chamber trials and torture--were ostensibly created to deal with "the terrorists," just who will qualify for that label in future is anyone's guess. The FBI claims the most numerous domestic terrorists currently threatening this great land are those pesky "eco-terrorists" with their doomsday "global warming" rants.
I would guess that, much like those targeted by recent formulations making critics of the President's Iraq policies potentially subject to classification as terrorists, the rest of us may not be far behind.
Sep 17 2007 - 7:19pm