It’s been both exhilarating and infuriating to watch the grassroots revolution under way in Egypt right now.

It’s exhilarating because it proves once again that history is not stagnant, and that people can only take so much oppression and corruption before they rise up even against a dictator who looked so powerful, so unlodgeable, just days before.

And it’s infuriating because the United States has been hopelessly compromised in this situation, just as it has in the face of one revolution after another in the Third World for the last 50 years.

It was this way with Suharto in Indonesia, the Shah in Iran, Marcos in the Philippines, Somoza in Nicaragua, the Duvaliers in Haiti, and especially with Mubarak in Egypt, even as he brutalized and impoverished his people.

But he served Washington’s needs for the past 30 years, and he was happy to cash his almost $2 billion annual bribe that went by the name of U.S. aid.

The Egyptians in the street understand that. And they see how halting and pathetic the response has been from the Obama Administration, which has taken forever to prepare to kiss Mubarak goodbye.

On Friday, Hillary Clinton urged “restraint” and Obama urged “reform.” But neither endorsed the demand of the Egyptian people to be rid of their dictator.

And then Clinton told a whopper on Sunday. “We are on the side” of the Egyptian people, “as we have been for more than 30 years,” she told Candy Crowley of CNN.

Who does Clinton think she’s fooling with this crap?

Was the United States on the side of the Egyptian people as Mubarak’s security forces engaged in rampant and hideous torture?

Was the United States on the side of the Egyptian people as Mubarak rigged one election after another?

At times like this, such bald-faced lies don’t fool anyone, especially not the Egyptian people.

If you liked this story by Matthew Rothschild, the editor of The Progressive magazine, check out his story "Vast Majority Wants to Amend the Constitution to Overturn Corporate Personhood!"

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Trump's politics are not the problem.

The fiery Milwaukee Sheriff is on the shortlist to head the Department of Homeland Security.

By Wendell Berry

Manifesto: The Mad Farmer Liberation Front

Love the quick profit, the annual raise,
vacation with pay. Want more 
of everything ready made. Be afraid 
to know your neighbors and to die.
And you will have a window in your head.
Not even your future will be a mystery 
any more. Your mind will be punched in a card 
and shut away in a little drawer.
When they want you to buy something 
they will call you. When they want you
to die for profit they will let you know. 
So, friends, every day do something
that won’t compute. Love the Lord. 
Love the world. Work for nothing. 
Take all that you have and be poor.
Love someone who does not deserve it. 
Denounce the government and embrace 
the flag. Hope to live in that free 
republic for which it stands. 
Give your approval to all you cannot
understand. Praise ignorance, for what man 
has not encountered he has not destroyed.
Ask the questions that have no answers. 
Invest in the millennium. Plant sequoias.
Say that your main crop is the forest
that you did not plant,
that you will not live to harvest.

Say that the leaves are harvested 
when they have rotted into the mold.
Call that profit. Prophesy such returns.
Put your faith in the two inches of humus 
that will build under the trees
every thousand years.
Listen to carrion—put your ear
close, and hear the faint chattering
of the songs that are to come. 
Expect the end of the world. Laugh. 
Laughter is immeasurable. Be joyful
though you have considered all the facts. 
So long as women do not go cheap 
for power, please women more than men.
Ask yourself: Will this satisfy 
a woman satisfied to bear a child?
Will this disturb the sleep 
of a woman near to giving birth? 
Go with your love to the fields.
Lie easy in the shade. Rest your head 
in her lap. Swear allegiance 
to what is nighest your thoughts.
As soon as the generals and the politicos 
can predict the motions of your mind, 
lose it. Leave it as a sign 
to mark the false trail, the way 
you didn’t go. Be like the fox 
who makes more tracks than necessary, 
some in the wrong direction.
Practice resurrection.

Wendell Berry is a poet, farmer, and environmentalist in Kentucky. This poem, first published in 1973, is reprinted by permission of the author and appears in his “New Collected Poems” (Counterpoint).

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