If there is one piece you read this week, let it be this by Mark Steyn.
Not only did I learn that the Department of Education has its own SWAT team:
I noted that the U.S. secretary of education, who doesn’t employ a single teacher, is the only education minister in the developed world with his own SWAT team: He used it to send 15 officers to kick down a door in Stockton, Calif., drag Kenneth Wright out onto the front lawn, and put him in handcuffs for six hours. Erroneously, as it turned out. But it was in connection with his estranged wife’s suspected fraudulent student-loan application, so you can’t be too careful. That the education bureaucracy of the Brokest Nation in History has its own Seal Team Six is ridiculous and offensive. Yet the citizenry don’t find it so: They accept it.
But also that the Railroad Retirement Board has armed agents:
The federal government operates a Railroad Retirement Board to administer benefits to elderly Pullman porters: For some reason, the RRB likewise has its own armed agents ready to rappel down the walls of the Sunset Caboose retirement home.
But the main point of Steyn’s piece talks to the cause of the above: We American citizens enable the loss of our own liberty:
I’m a long, long way from Rand Paul’s view of the world (I’m basically a 19th-century imperialist a hundred years past sell-by date), but I’m far from sanguine about America’s drone fever. For all its advantages to this administration — no awkward prisoners to be housed at Gitmo, no military casualties for the evening news — the unheard, unseen, unmanned drone raining down death from the skies confirms for those on the receiving end al-Qaeda’s critique of its enemies: As they see it, we have the best technology and the worst will; we choose aerial assassination and its attendant collateral damage because we are risk-averse, and so remote, antiseptic, long-distance, computer-programmed warfare is all that we can bear. Our technological strength betrays our psychological weakness.
Our psychological weakness indeed.
As a Christian, I would tighten this up to say our moral weakness. If we are confused about what is Good and what is Evil, will we be able to fight Evil — to the death — in order to preserve and protect Good?
The next paragraph sums it up nicely:
And in a certain sense they’re right: Afghanistan is winding down, at best, to join the long list of America’s unwon wars, in which, 48 hours after departure, there will be no trace that we were ever there. The guys with drones are losing to the guys with fertilizer — because they mean it, and we don’t. The drone thus has come to symbolize the central defect of America’s “war on terror,” which is that it’s all means and no end: We’re fighting the symptoms rather than the cause.
They mean it, and we don’t.
There it is.
Have the Islamists already won?
The question is answered by asking it. . . .