Barbra Streisand: Thank you for your kind remarks
Summary: Tacitus Key Quote: Showing that Romand Generals at a festifal were impliated in a fraud to create the appearance of war to acquire something of value: Power, promises, and agreements.
Relevance to 2007, 110th Congress
The "rest of the quote" relates to the undisclosed agreements which the US Congress has secretly agreed to remain silent about the original frauds and agreements related to the appearance of war.
___ What have members of Congress agreed to enjoy, not reveal, or otherwise remain silent about in exchange for their taking no action about the original frauds related to the appearance of a threat?
I'm writing this to you because, after these many years, my efforts to remain anonymous have failed.
I had hoped to champion the cause of liberty. I apologize that I was not aware that you had read my comments before the DNC. [Here is a backup link: Ref ]
I had hoped to remain anonymous, but someone found me. I had faxed your PR-department a copy of a link outlining briefly who I was. However, given the imminent disclosure of my real identity, I wanted to take the time to let you know that I have been through much turmoil over what has happened.
I originally posted the comments anonymously on the WNYC bulletin board, not thinking anything of them. Then a few months later, you were reading my quote. I didn't want to come forward because I thought the words spoke more on their own.
Given how events have turned out, I feel as though I have no choice to apologize for remaining silent. I didn't think that it was appropriate for me to claim credit. After Matt Drudge posted the link to your site and caused a stir, I really didn't know what to do or say.
I simply wrote the quote from the heart. But someone has changed my words. I never added the "Shakespeare" to it.
My thought was that the words were from Caesar, as if he were speaking today. I thought that the world might understand the risks lying ahead about the Bush Administration if they were laid out in terms that were clear, but "from another era" so that people would be less "outraged" at what I was saying.
Sadly, my efforts to build a bridge between the RNC and DNC backfired, and I have a large swarm of people in the DNC who are outraged at this blog and consider it the work of someone who is wasting their time.
I am reporting to you that my continued efforts to speak without identifying myself have failed; and that my quote which you were kind enough to recite, had a far larger impact than I could possibly imagine.
I have been writing this blog over the past year so that you might take the time, if you so choose, to compare my comments to the syntax in the quote. I trust that professional linguists will confirm that my writing style here matches the style in the quote.
I have not decided whether I want to wait until I am identified by name, or whether to come forward now.
I am also aware of the Threat Response Unit and Threat Management Unit [TMU] briefings from the Los Angeles County; that was another reason I didn't want to approach you in writing. I was convinced that any effort to contact you would be rebuffed. Ref
I am sorry that I did not have the courage to come forward when I first learned of what happened. I have been very upset at the direction of the country -- it is against everything I have been taught.
All I can say, by way of "thank you for inspiring me to write," is to dedicate what I have written in this blog to the Constitution and to you.
Again, thank you for reading my comments before the DNC. I am truly sorry for all the heartache I have caused.
[For exclusive coverage by Prissy. ]
Added: 31 Oct 2005
Ms Streisand's version best captures how I originally wrote the comments on WNYC. [ Backup ]
As you can see, they comments have alot of space, my style of writing:
"Beware the leader who bangs the drums of war
in order to whip the citizenry into a patriotic fervor,
for patriotism is indeed a double-edged sword.
It both emboldens the blood, just as it narrows the mind.
And when the drums of war have reached a fever pitch and the blood boils with hate and the mind has closed, the leader will have no
need in seizing the rights of the citizenry. Rather, the citizenry,
infused with fear and blinded with patriotism, will offer up all of
their rights unto the leader, and gladly so.
How do I know?
For this is what I have done.
And I am Caesar.
I've been thinking about what to do next.
Bluntly, I think I do owe a personal apology to everyone who, until now, mistakenly attributed the quote to Shakespeare or Caesar.
I had the thought of writing each day to a certain number of people on the internet, and individually posting in this blog an individual letter. I had the thought that I would take the time to review each of their blogs, and discuss their views on the quote that were personal to them.
I am still thinking I might do that. There are about 70,000 people who have quoted this, and I think if I write a few letters each day, with time I will get it done.
There were some other things I wanted to explain about the quote, which in hindsight, I wanted to acknowledge as hidden messages.
As you can tell the word "unto" is not a normal word we use today. That was a word I recall reading from Shakespeare and also old texts.
At the time that I wrote the quote, I was thinking in terms of a "formal language".
Later, after I was thinking about what really was at the heart of the word, "unto" I reviewed some of the biblical references to that word.
I cam across something that I had hoped would be a hidden code. When I wrote the quote, I didn't intentionally include this code; but in hindsight, the code does send a hidden message.
I thought I'd talk about the hidden code so that if there is any discussion on this or my intent, at least you'll know my perspective on this code.
"Unto" is a specific word.
Also, "Caesar" is a specific name.
If we combine the two into a single search, we'll arrive at the first step.
Bible: John -- 12 - 17
Here are the relevant passages from John 12-17. You'll notice that as you read my quote, and then look at the Bible, you'll start to see something emerge, which is a commentary on today.
In light of the President's devotion to religion, the code is that the people, by reading the Bible, would see what was really before us: A tyrant.
And from thenceforth Pilate
sought to release him: but the
Jews cried out, saying, If thou
let this man go, thou art not
Caesar's friend: whosoever maketh
himself a king speaketh against
Notice John 12 above discusses the relationship between an individual and the leader; but this discussion fails to review the inverse relationship which my quote commented on: The relationship between the leader and the law.
The focus on John 12 isn't whether the law is or isn't preserved; but whether the individual is in contravention to a single leader.
This is what has changed in America: That the issue isn't simply between the people and the leader; but whether the opposite is true: Whether the leader makes himself a king, and speaks against the Constitution.
The change is that we now have, as the supreme level of comparison, not a Caesar or a leader or a person, but the law.
Bush, as you were warned in the quote, hoped to not only turn the relationship between man-and-leader upside down; but to destroy the new relationship between the leader-and-the-law.
When Pilate therefore heard
that saying, he brought Jesus
forth, and sat down in the
judgment seat in a place that is
called the Pavement, but in the
And it was the preparation of
the passover, and about the sixth
hour: and he saith unto the Jews,
Behold your King!
Blind to truth:
This is what the people are, not only in how they approach government, but in how they approached the quote: Rather than focus on the meaning, as Ms Streisand did in her nice remarks to me, many were focused on the "correctness of the analogies". Thus, it shows that people can miss things, even when it is shown and waved before them.
I used the "lack of discussion of this code embedded in the quote" as a sign that a fundamental problem with the American society still needs to get fleshed out.
Thankfully, Libby's indictment shows us that the real relationship of concern isn't between the leader-and-the-individual; but between the leader-and-the-law.
But they cried out, Away with
him, away with him, crucify him.
Pilate saith unto them, Shall I
crucify your King? The chief
priests answered, We have no king
John 15 emphasizes the relationship at the time: Between the people and the leader.
Today, under our constitution, as I have said, the issue isn't whether we do or do not have a law, we do.
The issue is, rewriting John 15 "We have no law, but the Constitution." And conversely the John 12, if it were to reflect the American relationship between the law and leader should include a subtle change: "We have no king, but a Caesar" -- meaning our Constitution doesn't recognize a King, but for whatever reason, we have permitted this President to treat himself as if he were above the law, as Caesar was referred to.
Again, I make no claim that this "interpretation" of John 12 has literary merit; rather, the "lack of discussion" about this point is what has been troubling me.
Then delivered he him therefore
unto them to be crucified. And
they took Jesus, and led him away.
They key in John 16 is that "unto" was mentioned in terms of reverence; and as I wrote in the quote, the idea was that just as something important [Jesus] was given deference, so to have the Citizens given their right "unto" another authority.
John 16 talks about the movement of Jesus as an individual, person, or God; today, in the context of the quote, what was moved was not a human, but their right to be human.
SKULLS: This is the hidden reference to Bush and the skull and bones.
And he bearing his cross went
forth into a place called the
place of a skull, which is called
in the Hebrew Golgotha:
Here are some notes I made when I combined these concepts and discovered the hidden code:
Guantanamo, civilians who dare stand up to the leadership are
ridiculed, abused, and trumped: Civilian leaders will defy the fascists
My thoughts were, with time, someone would key in on the language used, simply focus on the terms, and see there was a connection to the words which Bush relies on, and then call him to account: How can this man consider him to be a man of God, when he moves in a way that is contrary to that notion of morality?
Indeed, this code has not been discussed anywhere. Rather, the quote simply was posted and passed around as it has.
In turn, because there was no apparent detailed analysis/deconstruction of the quote in terms of "Caesar" and "unto" and Mathew/John, I took this as a signal that something at the core of our nation's history was not getting examined.
Thus, I conclude this is the reason why, despite Libby's indictment, this nation continues to wrestle with the issue of accountability over the false information used to launch the nation to war.
Bluntly, if a nation is not wiling to face that its own leadership has fooled them into believing the "real issue" is one between the leader and the individual, but the real constitutional issue is the relationship between the individual and the Constitution, then the nation has allowed a tyrant to not only muddle their minds, and go to war, but to forever distract attention from accountability.
In other words, by muddling everyone’s mind, the nature of the relationship between leader-and-individuals has overshadowed our Constitutional system that focuses on the relationship between the leadership and the law.
This is a core problem which this nation, thankfully with Fitzgerald, appears to be waking up to: That the nature of our society isn't that the leader is or isn't above or below the individual; but that the leader is under the Constitution.
Nowhere does it give the power to the Congress or President the right or authority to pass laws with grant to the President the sole power to launch a war; or make up information; or ignore laws; or arbitrarily twist facts.
Rather, that right is reserved to the sovereign: The people.
That is what has been completely ignored, not discussed; and that "lack of discussion" is what is prompting me to speak out now.
The President, until Fitzgerald indicted Libby, was convincing people in Congress to remain silent about the warped relationships between the leader-and-the law; and focusing on the relationship of the people-and-the-law.
Thus, we must conclude that Congress, with its assent to this lawlessness, must have been promised something. That is at the heart of the next phase of inquiry after the Vice President's office is brought before the court of law.
Bush took himself out of the equation, and commanded that the Congress impose on the people, the very sanctions which Fitzgerald has now imposed on Libby.
The President did more than simply act as a tyrant and Caesar; he convinced the citizenry to go along with the shell game on power, distract their attention, and make them believe that the issue of "accountability" and "explanations" and "respond to inquire" is a burden that falls on the citizenry.
That is not only wrong, it is upside down: The real accountability belongs on the President to explain why he should not be indicted for war crimes; and why he should not be charged with a crime of destroying the Constitution.
All he has done is beat the drums of war to distract attention from the pressure he put on the citizenry; and by beating those drums he convinced the people to be accountable; when the real accountability lies with the President in terms of the Constitution.
But the issue doesn't stop with the President. Congress has a problem. It's individual members, entrusted to assert the rule of law and protect the constitution [and the structure that dictates a firm relationship between the law and the leadership] must be seen for what it is:
Part of the system that, for whatever reason, allowed and assented in the name of those they serve, to accept the inverted relationship between the individual and the law; and allowed the President to remove himself from accountability; and in turn, impose the law not on the leaders, but on the citizenry who was induced to accept this inverted and false relationship.
Congress, as a body, and individually, have violated their oaths of office and have failed to ensure the Constitution was preserved, protected, and defended. This is why Congress, not the People, is in turmoil: The people have woken up to the false relationship with Congressional representatives and Senators have both endorsed in violation of their oaths of office.
They have seen what a prosecutor can do to Libby.
The Senators and Representatives know that they too could be subject to serious sanctions and jail time if the scope of their failure were held before a court of law: To what extent they have violated the law in failing to meet their obligations as elected officials to preserve, protect, and defend the Constitution of the United States.
Arguably, any prosecutor could do what was done to the Vice President's office, and prepare indictments.
Congress knows this. This is why Congress is afraid.
Congress, not just a tyrant, is afraid of the rule of law and the accountability it would impose on them individually for failing to assert the rule of law and protect the Constitution.
The only thing that has been protected in an illusion. Fitzgerald pierced that illusion; and now Congress is pointing fingers.
There is no escape for them. We now know.
In short, the quote not only had a message; the quote had a hidden code that "should have" triggered some discussion.
In the vacuum of that discussion, I come forward to offer a concern: The issue isn't simply who did or didn't violate the law; but how this system permitted the focus to shift from [a] the relationship between the leader-and-the law; to [b] the false tyrannical relationship of citizens, nor leaders, held to account to laws based on non-sense and illusions.
In short, where were the "ably trained" DoD personnel who "should have" refused to obey unlawful orders?
They too, went along, with this false construct.
And those like LtCol Schaeffer, Scott Ritter, and Ian Fishback who dared to speak out, have been smeared so that a false relationship between the law and the leader could continue.
But, for that false relationship to continue, many must lie. And Libby found out the hard way, the law will ultimately prevail when it has been betrayed.
There's been some analysis on the use of Caesar, as a name or as an individual. Originally, when I wrote the quote I was thinking not in terms of Julius Caesar the individual, but the more generalized notion of Caesar as a man or leader.
I was leaning more toward the vague notion of "Kaiser" that referred to Hitler, but wanted to couch the notion of "Bush the Kaiser" in something that was more palatable.
I vaguely recall in late 2001 after 9-11 how many were talking about 9-11 and whether the US under the Patriot Act was leading down the wrong path. I was convinced the mindlessness was taking the entire country with it, but soon found many in violent opposition to this thesis.
I do recall making little headway when directly comparing Bush to Hitler. I recall getting responses, in general, of "What are you talking about" and "This is different."
Self-evidently, given Libby's indictment and the WMD ruse, we've seen what the leader will do in the name of "whatever."
Did I predict it? No, I simply looked at the momentum, and saw that despite the real questions and facts, there were fundamental issues not getting addressed, and the President wasn't adequately being held to account for what went wrong during 9-11.
Unremedied problems when couched under a veil of "there are other problems out there, so ignore this, Toto" [Wizard of Oz], invites people to fall into the trap of blind obedience.
The danger is when those who dare use their mind are ridiculed into submission.
This is why I kept quiet. I wanted to speak out despite the ugly truth and say what I was really thinking.
Thus, I feel betrayed for having my identity compromised. But I have made a choice. I shall speak out, even if the threat of exposure puts me at risk.
I have accepted that to remain silent is not a way to live.
I wish I had had the courage to say more earlier; but I have not been ready.
There's also something else I wanted to point out when we look at the formal language of the quote and the "unto" hint. Mather references Caesar here:
MATHEW 17- 21
Tell us therefore, What
thinkest thou? Is it lawful to
give tribute unto Caesar, or not?
But Jesus perceived their
wickedness, and said, Why tempt ye
me, ye hypocrites?
Shew me the tribute money. And
they brought unto him a penny.
And he saith unto them, Whose
is this image and superscription?
They say unto him, Caesar’s.
Then saith he unto them, Render
therefore unto Caesar the things
which are Caesar’s; and unto God
the things that are God's.
Some things are best left in their place: Humans, the law, and that of nature and God. Bush took on all three: He put himself above all humans and the law, and asked that we ascribe to him a Godlike reverence.
This completely destroyed the Founders notion of a leader falling under the umbrella of the Constitution. Again, Bush beat the drums of war, and in so doing, convinced the Congress and people to assent to a construction of the Constitution that was false; Bush incorrectly presumed the citizenry would forever assent to the false notion that the Citizenry, not the leader, must be accountable.
The correct relationship is the leaders' accountability to the law; nor the citizenry's accountability to a tyrant.
But this ruse didn't stop with Bush. It was in the Vice President's office.
Cheney when he went to the CIA headquarters did just this: He asked that the facts be put aside, and that the rule of a man, not the law or facts or rules of physics and nature, dictate what we were to believe then do.
The hidden message is that Bush, not God, was acting in a self-proclaimed "Godlike manner" of being someone who was laying judgment, but without facts.
This is how Hitler approached things.
With time, if the momentum was not stopped, it would have gotten worse.
Indeed, Ambassador Wilson and Valarie Plame and Sibel Edmonds and LtCol Schaeffer have all been put under the wrath simply because they chose to stand up to someone who was a self-proclaimed "God-like" entity, and putting themselves above the laws of man.
Mathew reminds us that there are things that only Caesar can do; and there are other things which the leader cannot take on as their own role, but must let others or nature take its course.
Who is any man or leader to impose their view that it is acceptable to lie, manipulate with fabrications, and get the citizenry to not see that the traditional relationship between the leader and the law was cast aside; and that individuals were asked to grovel before a tyrant, but this ruse was cloaked as if it were the law.
That is false, for these laws were passed on the basis of lies; and the citizenry when hearing those drums, failed to check the facts, or demand that the leader account.
Rather, the citizenry, with its blood boiling and thinking ebbing, gleefully accepted the new construct and believed that they, not the leader, must be the ones that account to the Constitution; and then say nothing when the leadership takes itself out of the umbrella of the law.
We fall into a trap when we force things to be accepted that are not true; or we compel others to conclude something that is false.
This is the danger of leaders who put themselves above the law, and speak as if they have a superior knowledge of morality.
Overall, I had hoped that someone might do some research into the quote and consider what was actually being said. But I didn't find this.
This was another reason I wanted to speak out. I thought that a "plain reading" of the quote didn't quite capture something that others may, in the future, come across.
Rather than be silent, I thought I'd share it with you so that you know what was floating around in my mind, but also a motivation for me to remain silent.
I was using the "public analysis of the quote" as a gauge of whether I thought things were going in the right direction: Was it safe to speak out; was there a message that people were ignoring; and despite the warnings, were people more willing to engage in what was contrary to our laws.
The pictures from Abu Ghraib and Guantanamo have told me that despite speaking out, a nation will justify abusing others; and just as I said in the quote, the leader will put himself above the law.
From my reading of the SecDef guidance on war crimes, it is clear that the statutes were there for soldiers to follow.
But, this nation under the cloud of self-justified arrogance, didn’t simply walk down that road to tyranny, but the nation went with it.
The checks and balances failed.
Now, people are speaking out about what happened, and we're realizing that Rumsfeld may not have been forthcoming with Congress.
Fitzgerald may look into this when he looks at the WMD issues and the decisions to go to war.
The rule of law is slowly prevailing over the momentum I spoke about when I originally wrote these remarks.
It is time to unleash the judicial branch on the Department of Defense for their involvement in the war crimes, and their failure to refuse to obey unlawful orders: The SecDef, Joint Chiefs, and Senior Military Commanders need to face Nuremburg-like tribunals to hold them to account.
If we do not hold them responsible per the rule of law, this will happen again.
We must choose: Accountability, or another reminder.
If we do not make the tough decision to impose the rule of them, they will impose the rule of lawlessness on a free citizenry.
If you allow that to happen, you are the enemy of the Constitution and you have failed in your oath of office.
You do not have to account to a person. Just to the law.
It is that simple, and that important.
If you want an idea of what is unfolding within the Pentagon, this is how the Constitution and rule of law is being imposed on the Joint Staff and SecDef.
This is why they are afraid, why they beat the drums of war: To distract attention.
They are in deep trouble. And they also know what happened to Libby can happen to them.
They have no defense.
Not to worry, they won't get far: They will soon trip and their actions will be used against them in a court of law or court martial. Civilians can be tried for war crimes.
And they shall.
Some have commented that "Ms Streisand should have known Shakespeare didn't write like this". I believe that charge is unfair.
Shakespeare didn't always write in a set way. Shakespeare did write, at times, in a non-formal way, without prose or rhyme. Here is an example:
'Hamlet: Who I, your onlie jib-maker, why what shoulde a man do but be merry? for look how cheerfully my mother lookes, my father died within these two hours. [Ref: Visually inspected 1 Nov 2005: British library: Hamlet; 1603 (1st) quartro; Halliwell-Phillipps (C.34.k.1), page 39, 14th line from top]To be clear, as I stated above, I never said that "Shakespeare" wrote this. Someone else added that.
My only point at this juncture is that this argument ["because the quote wasn't in a rhyming pattern, Shakespeare could not have written it, therefore Ms Streisand was in error"] misses the point: Shakespeare does not have a set style, but does freely write as I have done.
It's true that Shakespeare didn't write the quote; but it’s unfair to ridicule someone who is familiar with Shakespeare's less conventional styles, for believing otherwise.
It remains to be understood who added "Shakespeare" to the comment; and who added, "Julius Caesar" to the words.
One thing I have noticed is, despite the "uproar about fact checking," how many errors there are in simple comments in blogs.
Thus, I've grown to appreciate succinct news reporting that is factual, and have grown to see the benefits of a main stream media when pockets of publishing fall apparent in Louisiana.
The NYT fell down when it came to WMD; and Clear Channel kept the airwaves full of information despite not running advertising. I don't see blogs or the internet being able to match the force of the main stream media.
Judith Miller and Libby show us what the media can do to drum the beats of war based on illusions. But that media can also be a force of good when it is credibly challenged in pursuit of prudence, not blindly embraced out of fear.
But I digress . . .
There were a couple of other factors that caused me to be reluctant to come forward. As you may know Ms Streisand had the misfortune of having her personal residence identified on a public website.
She was in litigation over that, and at the time, I felt it was a distraction for someone like me to come forward.
I didn't want to claim credit nor appear out of the bushes as an opportunist.
I also, bluntly, wasn't willing to go to the Press and talk to them about it. In my view, they were part of the problem: Where were the questions about WMD?
The last thing I wanted to do was to lean on the very failed-institutions.
I wanted to see if I could let people know "in my way".
Clearly, there's a problem. The quote wasn't written by Julius Caesar, and at no time did I make a claim that it was.
I simply said “Caesar” as in a leader.
I don’t see “Julius” or “Shakespeare” in the original comments I made so you’ll have to wait for those who added those remarks to come forward.
However, the problem is also that many have been led to believe something that isn't true.
Thus, my quandary.
I had thought I might remain silent forever, but then I thought it wouldn't be fair to the one person who, in my view, rightly or wrongly deserves to know: There is a real person who wrote this, and they are fully aware of what is going on, today as Libby has been indicted.
Yet, I as an unknown do not have the right, in my view, to make a decision about this matter: For, this is a public work, and this is far larger than me.
When Ms Streisand spoke these words, my world, without knowing, changed. But I, me as a person, am at the other end of the food chain. Ms Streisand is where she is, and I am where I am: Anonymous.
In my view, I do not have the right to "lean on" Ms Streisand's comments or reaction; all I can do is do it on my own: Either succeed or fail on my own right, not for "what I wrote long ago."
Each word, each work, each idea, must stand on its own. I cannot ask that anyone accept or reject my ideas on the basis of who I am; rather, it is my goal to simply let the words speak for themselves.
I was more concerned with expressing an idea, not in taking credit. I felt that far more could be done with silence, in the hopes that far greater good could be done given my lack of desire to take credit.
There have been a number of general comments that, I have thought about, and thought best not to personally respond.
I have realized that people are entitled to their own opinion of what has happened, and that it is not my place to debate them. They have their view, and I know what I did. It's not my place to convince them of something that I know is real; and to debate them would give them deference.
I choose silence and I shall not mention their comments nor afford them credit where they have not afforded others deference.
If someone is going to be closed minded about the issue, or believe that this was a "prank" or a "hoax" then they are not entitled to know more than what I have already said.
It is interesting to notice the people, despite the "not knowing" what the intent of the writer was, that they asserted defiantly as if it this were some mocking joke. Clearly, they missed the point, and it's not my job to shed light for them.
I've already attempted to send out the word of warn, history has happened, and it's not my job to explain to them again. They either get it, or they don't.
But there are some things that I believe people might want to consider.
Would your view on history change, if you knew the author of the quote?
Would you, in 2001, have done something differently, if you knew who wrote the quote?
Would you, in 2005, have a different view of what happened since 2001 if you knew the quote?
I think the answer might be: The quote and message would have gotten less attention; and things would not have changed.
Ms Streisand gave everyone a fair chance and warning. And the public decided in 2004. Yet, today in 2005 we now find there's "more evidence."
The issue is: Would you have voted differently if you'd known about Able Danger, the Downing Street Memo, and the ruses over WMD?
That is only conjecture. I suspect, as the Germans prior to WWII, didn't really want to know the truth; and the reason for the outrage at Ms Streisand wasn’t that she read a quote that was incorrect attributed to Shakespeare; but that she dared to speak out at all, as has Ambassador Wilson, Sibel Edmonds, and Lt Col Schaeffer.
Ms Streisand, in my view, deserves an apology not just form me, but form the entire DoD that allowed this non-sense to continue; and the DoD that failed to assert the rule of law and refuse to follow unlawful orders.
That is what is most outrageous. Yet, the debates continued within the halls of the Pentagon, in Guantanamo, and in Abu Ghraib: "What do we do?"
Sadly, this nation's laws and commanders were not there to guide the troops to make the right decision: What do we do when we are given unlawful orders?
The Germans played stupid.
So do Americans.
And that, in my view, is at the heart of the outrage at the quote, what Ms Streisand boldly said before the DNC, and what this world has attempted to give tell the United States: You are not above the law, you are not Gods, and you are not self-proclaimed Emperors.
But, this is not news. Because as we learn from history, despite these "big lessons" for people to learn in school, when the leader bangs the drums of war, the citizenry will give up their rights unto the leader, and gladly so.
How do I know?
Because my name is Constant. And I've seen it happen before.
The real question is: What are we going to do to make sure it doesn't happen again?
The problem is that this "lessons learned" approach within DoD and DoJ has failed. Supposedly "everyone was trained" and "we all knew the laws of war."
But this leader, banged the drums of war so loudly, that people like Valerie Plame had their identify exposed.
Our own leaders did this to our fellow citizens. And they did so to the cheers of people willing to discredit Ambassador Wilson with non-sense claims.
That is the greatest crime, and the sign of a cancer: When free citizens will cheer with delight that they've offered up their rights to the leader, denied themselves to speak out, and are not simply afraid of thinking, but gallantly parade themselves as if they are above others because they choose to be foolish, blind to reality.
The real issue is: What is to be done to ensure the nation, if it chooses to remain a republic, is going to preserve that "rule of law" when the leader bangs the drums of war, and goes after people like Scott Ritter and Valerie Plame?
I chose to speak out, but to remain hidden so that I would avoid becoming a target.
Yet, I found that anonymity doesn't solve the problem. It simply sends a green light for the abuse.
Sometimes, the best thing to do, is to no longer wrest on ones words, but allow one's reputation, education, standing, and good name to speak and let that tip the balance, and say far less.
I still would hope that this might be how the world might become: That we could simply debate anonymously, and let the right reasons prevail.
That the words alone, without regard to one's name or anything else, be the simply basis for making prudent decisions.
But, I have learned, that free people will give up their minds to people who parade credentials that are worthless, or banter around signs and symbols that do not make their arguments more credible.
It is ironic, that in my desire to remain silent, the only reason the words took hold was that they were perceived to be from long ago, from a great person, a Roman General, and for that I wish I could have lived up to your expectations.
But, that is not where we are, nor where I find myself, nor where the quote has traveled.
I will say more as I think of things that might be appropriate.
Thank you for reading, and I wish you well and continued success in your endeavors.
Thank you for taking the time to read my comments above, and the quote I wrote. I'm sorry about the confusion and hope there is something specific I can do to get the country back to the rule of law, not tyrants.
Attorney Fitzgerald is doing far more than I could hope; we should continue to wish him well and success in finding the facts and holding the leadership to account for what they have done, and failed to do.
We have to make sure he has our support to get this right, and fix what has gone so terribly wrong. We owe it to ourselves, not just our Founders and future generations, to heed the lessons and really apply this to ourselves: "Never again."
It is one thing to promote that as a standard that the world must meet; but American has shown that it has a hard time meeting the standard of "Never again" when applied to its own leadership.
This needs to get fixed.
This didn’t' have to happen, but it has.
You were warned.
How did I know?
Maybe I'll say more on that . . .
Let there be no mistake, when the Downing Street Memo surfaced, I knew the scale had tipped. The days were numbered.
That is when I began to let people know indirectly who I was.
The Downing Street Memo was, for me, the confirmation that it was safe to believe that things would be saved.
Until then, it seemed likely that we would continue to be asked to believe in greater non-sense, and that crimes would be buried.
Sadly, despite the lessons of Iraq, I sense that this non-sense leadership which I wrote about in the quote, is doing the same with Syria and Iran: Asking that we blindly assert violations and command others to grovel, all the while distracting attention from the real problems.
I find it curious that the Syrians are treated in one way, but the Pakistanis another. [More on that here]
Why are we to presume that the Syrians "are willing" to do something to a neighbor, but the Pakistanis would not? There's a major disconnect in the arguments in the Pakistan and Syrian situations. That disconnect, in an of itself, is a sign that the arguments are not based on reason and facts, but on emotion: Exactly what is at the heart of the quote: "Beware the leader who will excite you to not think . . . "
In other words, despite the "lessons of Iraq, and the non-sense over WMD, and the Downing Street Memo," it looks like this nation is banging the war drums, but the arguments and facts aren't there.
Thank you for your kind words and confidence in my expression. I have thought about what you have said in writing plays. Before I do that, I still think there are some important things I need to get clear on, do, and address.
Yes, the authorship is important. I, Constant, am the author of this quote:
Beware the leader who bangs the drums of war in order to whip the citizenry into a patriotic fervor, for patriotism is indeed a double-edged sword. It both emboldens the blood, just as it narrows the mind. And when the drums of war have reached a fever pitch and the blood boils with hate and the mind has closed, the leader will have no need in seizing the rights of the citizenry. Rather, the citizenry, infused with fear and blinded by patriotism, will offer up all of their rights unto the leader and gladly so. How do I know? For this is what I have done. And I am Caesar.
Ms. Streisand was kind enough to be my shield, and wield a very sharp sword.
And for that, we are better for it.
Thank you, Barbra Streisand for having the courage to say what needed to be said, and to do so in a way that I didn't know how to accomplish.
In the spirit of the Illiad and the Odyssey,
With one quote,
she launched a fleet,
and our humanity was saved.
With fond respect,
Put aside the quote for the moment, but recall the themes: Rights, power, war. Some have suggested the language in the quote because they mention rights indicates that the words are from the 21sth Century.
The conclusion is true, but the reasoning is not well supported. The Works of Tacitus mentions the same things. The rest of the story, after the Caesar took control was the story of the people who shook the yoke of slavery: "What if the Gauls shake off the yoke?" [p. 207]
It is incorrect to suggest that rights were not mentioned: Liberty and slavery were not choices, but imposed or achieved.
The rest of the story: The rebellion which defeated the tyrant. Yes, this is the surprise.
False Claim: The quote is anachronistic.
Incorrect, this assertion relies on the false assumption that all swords were double edged (there were single edge swords), or that nobody spoke about the need for war (Tacitus defies this assertion); or that the concepts of liberty and freedom were not part of the Roman vocabulary (Tacitus proves this is incorrect).
Someone might have to specifically distinguish between a double and single edge sword. There were also drums. The remainder of this discussion goes into details about the quote, Rome.
FALSE CLAIM #1 in re Swords: There were only double edge swords; calling a sword "double edge" is anachronistic. FALSE, contrary to what is history.
The argument is irrelevant. The quote doesn't distinguish between Julius Caesar or Caesar; any double-edged sword mentioned in Rome could have been distinguished from the single-edge version which the opposing Greek armies used regardless the era of the Caesar. There is no merit to the assertion that double edge sword could not have been used; or that using 'double edge sword" is anachronistic. There were both double and singled edge swords.
Single Edge Swords
The bible and Greek literature, from the time before Caesar referred to a sword that was single edged. μάχαιρα, or makhaira or machaera. The Greek New Testament was written before 140 AD, Ref well before Rome Fell in 470 AD. The Greek word, as reported in the Greek New Testament, for a single-edged sword is άχαιρα.
There are two textual references in the Greek New Testament specifically distinguishing between a double and single edge sword: Jeremiah 14:12; and Samuel 2:16.
Jeremiah 14:12οτι εαν νηστευσωσιν ουκ εισακουσομαι τησ
δεησεωσ αυτων και εαν προσενεγκωσιν ολοκαυτωματα και θυσιασ ουκ ευδοκησω εν αυτοισ οτι εν μ αχαιρα και εν λιμω και εν θανατω εγω συντελεσω αυτουσ13και Ref
Translation: When they fast, I will not hear their cry; and when they offer burnt offering and an oblation, I will not accept them: but I will consume them by the sword, and by the famine, and by the pestilence. Ref
Here is the second example showing that a single edge sword, as distinguished from a double edge sword, was mentioned before the Roman Empire fell:
Samuel 2:16 και εκρατησαν εκαστοσ τη χειρι την κεφαλην του πλησιον αυτου και μ αχαιρα αυτου εισ πλευραν του πλησιον αυτου και πιπτουσιν κατα το αυτο και εκληθη το ονομα του τοπου εκεινου μερισ των επιβουλων η εστιν εν γαβαωνRef
Here is one translation showing the reference specifically mentions sword:
They caught everyone his fellow by the head, and thrust his sword in his fellow's side; so they fell down together: therefore that place was called Helkath Hazzurim, which is in Gibeon. Ref
___ How do we know whether the Greeks were talking about a single or double edge sword?
Answer: The use of the word αχαιρα informs us that we're talking about a Greek sword, not a Roman gladius, which is double edged; or the longer cavalry sword called a spatha. Ref
False Claim: All Roman swords were single edged.
False and irrelevant. Before Rome fell, swords could be either baled on one edge or two edges. The only way to identify whether a sword mentioned in literature was a single or double edged sword, one would have to look at the use of the term, and which specific variation of the word sword was being used.
Double Edged Sword: Depends on the version, time period, and location
There were over 20 different Legions in the Roman Army spanning Europe, from Spain, Britain, Germany, into Egypt. Spanish history may be linked with a left-bladed sword. Some has suggested that the sword was only left-bladed, not double: It is true there are left-bladed swords -- Celt-Iberian leaf-bladed short sword, and the basis for the Mainz Sword.
However, some have incorrectly stated that Romans did not have double edged swords. The Roman Gladius has two edges and well depicted in Roman reliefs: Images [ Munich Glyptotele: Gladiator depicts a gladulus, from C. 100BCE. Larger]
Shape of Shield
Roman shields are often thought of as being large and curved; but this depends on whether the troops are auxiliaries or Legionaries. Some troops used smaller round shields.
False Claim #2 in re rights, liberty: There were no discussions about liberty, rights in Rome.
Incorrect, as documented by Tacitus.
- Book IV, para 5, 198: "Of all the virutes of his father-in-law, he imbided none so deeply as hsi spirit of liberty."
- Book IV, para 8, 201: "As unlimited power was the aim of the worst princes, so, however excellent they may be, they desired to see liberty exercised within due bounds."
Blood: Book III, para 84, 193: "Viteliens . . .stained their hearths and alters with their blood. . ."
Caesar, a Generic Name: Book III, para 86, p. 184: "Domitian came for to the general of his party, was unanimously sluted [?] with the title of Caesar"
Passion, peace: Book IV, para 1, p. 195: "to stir up tumult and public distraction, the most profligate have the greatest power; but peace and order are the work of virtue and ability."
Sword: "if their passage was disputed, they were determined to cut their way sword in hand." and "nor did they perish by the sword only . . ." [Book IV, para 20, p. 210] [Para 23, page 212: "[T]hey were thrown down headlong by the swords of the enemy,"]
Brutality; Book IV, para 13 p. 204: "The former [Julius Paulus], under false charge of rebellion, was put to death by Fonteius Capito."
Shield: Book IV, para 25, p. 206 "[B]eing placed on a shield, according to the custom of the nation."
Colors: Book IV, para 25, p. 206: "Aquilus, a principal centurion, collected together all the colors and standards. . . "; "Civilis having surrounded himself with the banners taken from the vanquished cohorts. . ." [Book IV, p. 208, para 18]
Fear: Book IV, para 24, p. 213: "Hordeonius Flaccus . . . being himself paralyzed with fear. . "
False Claim: Citizens of Rome didn't need to be rallied to war.
Irrelevant, false, and contrary to what Tacitus reports was done.
False Claim: There were no drums in Rome.
False. There is a Latin word for drum: tympanum, and are depicted on Roman Coins of the era. Look closely at the round object in this coin: [Markianopolis Septimius Severus 193 - 211 A.D; the Senate declared Septimus emperor in Absentia after the death of Emperor Pertinax.]
False Claim: There is no Latin word for Drum.
Incorrect, the word for drum is not commonly known or used, and not available in many dictionaries. However, the round object on this coin is a tympanum, Latin for "drum."
Note the date well overlaps the period when there were both Greek single-edge and Roman double-edged swords.
Note, we're not talking about a battle-drum; we're talking about an occasion when a leader might be pounding the drums to incite people for war. Where could this have occurred?
Exodus 15:20sumpsit ergo Maria prophetis soror Aaron tympanum in manu egressaeque sunt omnes mulieres post eam cum tympanis et choris Ref
___ Latin word for drum: Tympanum
___ Events about the Exodus, as reported in the Bible, mentioning the use of a drum, were about events which occurred at least 15th Century BCE, or at least 14,000 years before the Romans Ref
___ There is an image of a festival drum on a Roman coin before the Roman Empire ended
___ The quote did not mention that the leader was in war; only that someone was inciting the citizens into war
___ "Drums of war" was not intended to mean, "War drums," but the incitement of people by a leader, using drums, to march into war
Irrelevant Claim: There were no drums in battle.
Irrelevant. A "leader" when they "bang the drums of war" is attempting to incite people into war. The quote doesn't say there is a war; the quote talks about a leader mobilizing for war -- the war hasn't happened; and whether there are or are not drums in battle is irrelevant.
Let's consider where the discussion, if it had occurred in Rome, could have occurred. Roman history has examples of drums being used in theater, public events.
Drums of War
(1) Where they are speaking
"Beware the leader who bangs the drums of war". Some have suggested that the Romans did not use drums on the battlefield. Put aside whether that is or is not true; and consider what the quote says: Beware the leader who bangs the drums of war. When discussing war, or inciting others to fight, the leader is not necessarily on the battlefield; rather, they could be anywhere. Indeed, it was not uncommon for Roman leaders to attend festivals, temple, the Senate, public events, contests, and holidays.
Also, there is no reason to define the "beating of the drum" to the battlefield, or Roman Legions. The drums could have been on a ship, at sea, or near any of the more than twenty legions in spanning from Britain, Germany, to Egypt.
(2) What was the context of the speech
Saternilia is a Roman Holiday, on December 17th.
"During this wild week, public business was suspended, the law courts and schools were closed and no criminals were punished, no wars were fought nor any business conducted. . . .roles were reversed . . . This was a time for people to say what they felt, without fear of consequences . . . "
False Claim: Romans did not have to be rallied by war.
Incorrect: Tacitus reports Roman Generals engaging in public discussions at festivals to justify wars.
False Claim: The Speech would have only been given in battle where there were no drums.
Incorrect, Tacitus reports that there were speeches before battle at festivals where there were musical Roman drums. The quote never says that the speech was in or out of battle. Rather, the question for the researches is: Why would someone interject the assumption that the quote would have been from the battlefield, when it could have been construed to be the opposite: By anyone who was, or was pretending to be, Caesar attempting to inspire the citizens into battle?
The details follow:
Those who say the quote is in error have failed to consider when the quote might be applicable: When a leader speaks to incite others to fight, not on the battlefield, but in their homes, where they least expect it, in their cities.
Consider Tacitus, Volume II, Book III, page 188, para 78, lines 1-3
While those transactions were going on with the party of Vitellius, the army of Vespasian, quitting Narnia, were passing the Satunalian holidays at Ocriculum, quite at their ease.
There is no battle, nor is there a battlefield. The army is leisurely resting in Winter. Tacitus continues, note the mentions of the fraud:
To wait for the arrival of Mucianus, was the ostensible reason for this ill-timed delay. Motives of a different nature were imputed to Antonius. There were those who suspected him of having lingered there with a fraudulent intent, in consequence of letters of Vitellius, in which he offered him the consulship, his daughter, who was marriageable, and a rich dowry.
We see nothing related to armed combat, nor is there any mention of a battle raging. Tacitus speaks of a possible marriage. Tacitus shares the surprise, far from battle, he discusses the thing the researches have discounted as possible:
Others treated it as mere invention, and contrivance to gratify Mucianus. Some were of the opinion that it was the deliberate plan of all the generals to alarm the city with the appearance of war, rather than carry it into Rome;
___ Tacitus mentions the specific conditions and events where Roman Generals did incite the population on the false reasons for war; or using the appearances of war to excite or alarm the city.
Once the Generals, as Tacitus reports, alarmed the city on the appearance of war, there should have to be several things happening:
1. Nobody would know the truth;
2. The appearance of war could not be disputed;
3. Someone would have a motivation to incite someone to believe that something may happen unless they acted
4. The objective of creating an image, possible threat, or a negative consequence was perceived to be the very thing that would mobilize action.
5. There was a fraudulent intent perhaps unrelated to war, the desire to obtain some other prize, or induce someone to give up their right to freedom by believing that they must marry.
How does anyone in the 21st Century argue that the quote, "Beware the leader" does not do what Tacitus warned: Foretell what was possible; warn of the possible consequences of something; and dare to remind the world that the appearance of war can induce people to give up their rights, take action based on appearances, and induce people to do what they would otherwise not do.
As Tacitus reports, the appearance of war was intended to do what Bush did: induce someone to give up their freedom, and assent to something that they might otherwise not agree -- an illegal agreement based on fraud.
The issue before us in 2007, is what were the DNC and GOP Members of Congress jointly promised for them to agree not to speak out, oppose, or raise questions -- just as Tacitus reported.
___ What did the President promise in exchange for an agreement based on fraud?
___ By inducing the public to believe that there was an appearance of a threat, what did the President hope to accomplish, that he could not otherwise achieve?
___ What was specifically hoped to have been achieved that would otherwise not be achievable had the truth been known?
___ Once the fraud was discovered, were the rewards -- illegally exchanged on the basis of that fraud related to the appearance of a threat -- sufficient to induce the US leadership in both parties to do nothing about the original fraud by the President?
___ How have the full terms of this illegal arrangement been illegally classified, despite it being illegal to hide evidence related to the original fraud and the subsequent agreements based on the original misleading information?
There is more to the quote. It is more than what the words say, but the nature of the leader, or their real identity and capability.
Who would bang the drums of war during the Saturnalian Holiday? It could be anyone: When roles are reversed on this holiday, anyone could be a "leader", and they would suffer no consequences for speaking their mind:
Jupiter Capitolinus: Tarpeian Rock
Where else might drums be beaten during a holiday? Perhaps at a festival, at a dedication, or at a Temple. Jupiter Capitolinus presided over the Roman games.
Who would have us believe that there were no drums ever beaten at the Roman games?
Tacitus Volume II, Book III, Para 71,
They then assaulted the capitol in two different quarters; near the grove of the asylum where the Tarpeian rock is ascended by a hundred steps.4
[Note4: The Tarpeian rock, with is hundred steps, was to the west side of the Capitoline hill, and from that eminence malefactors were thrown headlong into the Tiber.]
After the Temple burned to the ground, Sylla rebuilt, but there was no dedication. [Page 185, para 72] What if there had been a dedication, and drums at the festive occasion? Could have happened.
False Claim: Shakespeare never talked about drums, Rome, or anything related to the words in the speech.
Irrelevant and false, the quote was not originally attributed to anyone; and Shakespeare did mention drums in Rome. If you have a beef with Shakespeare incorrectly mentioning drums, your beef is with Shakespeare, not with Ms. Streisand or the author of the quote.
Indeed, there is another holiday, a rock, a drum, and it is from a scene in Shakespeare, The Tragedy of Coriolanus, Act III, scene ii:
Let them puff all about mine ears, present me
Death on the wheel or at wild horses’ heels,
Or pile ten hills on the Tarpeian rock,
That the precipitation might down stretch
Below the beam of sight, yet will I still
Be thus to them.
. . .
Coriolanus : Which quired with my drum, into a pipe Ref
More drums from Shakespeare: Here
Even Shakespeare wrote about wars and drums: Here
The list of possible occasions where these words could have been read are endless: It doesn't have to be in Rome or the Roman Empire, but in the distant lands where a leader named Caesar was celebrating or resting; or could be on the sea.
Whether the Legions did or did not have drums is irrelevant; it is false to suggest that nobody had a drum; or that the speaker would only make a statement in the heat of battle on the battlefield; or that the person who was speaking was claiming to be Caesar. The quote could have been said by someone who wanted to say what was on their mind, whether it was Barbra Streisand at the DNC, Caesar, or someone else is irrelevant -- the words stand on their own.
Ms Streisand is entitled to say these words as if they were from Shakespeare, Caesar or anyone: She can say what she believes is true, and the error cannot be credibly condemned or held against her.
Truth is the path to leadership.
There is a Latin words for drum: tympanum Ref Why would there be a Latin word for drum, a musical instrument which some might suggest did not exist in Rome to whip the citizenry into patriotic fervor?
Ref Sculpture 200-400AD, Egypt, woman playing a drum. Maps depicting the Roman Empire between 150 AD and 300 AD, when the Egyptian sculpture was likely made, included Egypt, suggesting that this is physical evidence that drums did exist within the Roman Empire, and could have been used at a festival in Egypt, honoring the god Isis.
Ref: The Latin term "tympanum auris" was introduced by Albertus Magnus circa 1225. A tympanum was a drum or similar instrument, as a tambourine or timbrel; also, the stretched membrane of a drum, a drum-head.
Let’s consider the existence of drums in Rome. Shakespeare in between 1607-8 wrote Coriolanus, depicting life in 100BC, or ~490/450BC Rome, where he mentioned drums on several occasions. Some historians do not record the first drums until 450AD in Peru, then 750 in China. One PhD suggested the quote, “Beware the leader who bangs the drums of war” could not have been written by Shakespeare, arguing that the Romans did not have drums on the battlefield; yet, the quote does not specifically mention drums on the battlefield, only mentions a leader is banging the drums of war, possibly well before and away from battle.
False Claim in re Shakespeare Shakespeare only wrote in iambic pentameter.
Irrelevant and false. The quote was not originally claimed to have been written by Shakespeare; but even if that claim was made, there's no merit to the argument that Shakespeare only wrote in iambic pentameter. Incorrect. He did write in free verse on occasion.
False Claim in re Caesar: Julius Caesar didn't say this.
Irrelevant, the quote never mentions "Julius" but only the idea of Caesar, as a leader, the same idea of Kaiser in Germany.
Whether the quote was or was not written by Shakespeare is irrelevant. This author never claimed that it was. Someone else added that information. Those who claim the quote was “obviously” not written by Shakespeare rely on incorrect facts about what themes were or were not discussed in Rome.
(a) Roman relief, mosaics, and sculpture depict warriors using a Gladius, a double edged sword;
(b) Shakespeare in 1607 did mention drums and war in a play about 100BCE Rome;
(c) Tacitus between 100-150AD did mention rights in the history of Rome;
(d) Roman holidays and festivals did permit role reversals;
(e) Tacitus reports at these festivals the civilian population was concerned that the Generals were whipping the citizenry to a false war.
The quote never states that the events did or did not occur in Rome. They could have occurred anywhere in the Roman Empire spanning Britain, Spain, and Germany, to Egypt. It appears those who have questioned the quote have started with the premise that the quote was not from Julius Caesar, and circularly argued false facts.
The original analysis of the quote -- and so-called “evidence” proving the quote is in valid – is flawed. The effort to discredit the quote appears linked with a desire to discredit the words, not do what Barbara Streisand well did: Understood the quote was really about American fascism, and the danger President Bush posed to the American Constitution.
Barbara Streisand may have made a minor error in not doing thorough research; however, the historians have made a far larger blunder: Calling attention to their flawed analysis; then well showing that they too failed to do adequate fact checking on areas they supposedly claim expertise. That is a far greater error and credibility problem. The PhD did not detect the error within Shakespeare; had there been a thorough analysis of the facts, even if Shakespeare had written the quote, it is likely some scholars would have found another excuse to discredit the bard and the words.
Further research may wish to explore to what extent particular scholars claiming expertise of Roman daily life have made errors in peer reviewed journals. The quote is closer to the facts than those the experts used to discredit the quote and the appropriate concern with the President’s reckless disregard for the laws of war, the rule of law, and the false facts. Historical scholars who have discredited the quote have done what the quote warned: Just as Addington, Gonzalez, Yoo, Bybee, and Keisler selectively twisted the law to justify unlawful outcomes, so too have the historical experts selectively twisted facts to ignore the destruction of the rule of law in America. The same flawed arguments used to justify illegal war were used to justify ignoring fair warnings related to that illegal activity. Let the war crimes trials begin.