agencies are currently taking to protect us from militias, survivalists,rnand white supremacists; but the CISPES affair gives arnpretty good idea. I assume that at least one person has alreadyrnprovided the information necessary to justify the investigationrnof the far right, including quite legal operations like bookstores,rnpolitical parties, and radio stations. You may trust Reagan andrnEd Meese with these sweeping powers, but would you trustrnClinton and Janet Reno? (And vice versa.)rnSubversion investigations also venture into fundamentalrnissues of religious liberty. According to the classic counterinsurgencyrntheory of Erank Kitson, Roger Trinquier, and others,rnyou can rarely penetrate the fighting formations directly, so yournbegin with the support and front groups, the “above-ground”rnlegal organizations, hi the Varelli case, churches and clergy werernprime targets of the investigation, as they assuredly are now inrnthe investigations of the far right. I wonder how many pastors,rnleft or right, have become informants for the federal government?rnIt would be nice if liberals were to criticize the investigationrnof rightist and fundamentalist churches and compounds, just asrnconservatives should have protested the disruption of liberalrnchurch activities in the 1980’s. Neither eventuality seems likely,rnhi fact, contemporarv feminists are demanding a “proactiverninvestigation” of supposed networks of pro-life terrorists, presumablyrnwith the full panoply of infiltrators and informants.rnThe campaign would inevitably reach deep into religiousrnorganizations. If that’s what it takes to fight hate groups/communistsrn(delete where applicable), so be it.rnThere is one historical analogy which might offer hope forrnovercoming this impasse. In the bloody history of 17th-centuryrnEngland, different factions enjoyed power at various times,rnand passed draconian laws against their enemies. Puritans andrnWhigs persecuted Tories and Catholics on the right and receivedrntheir comeuppance some years later when the fortunesrnwere reversed. From about 1670, however, this futile game ofrntit-for-tat began to produce lasting benefits, when English parliamentsrnbegan passing laws which in modified form serve todayrnas the basis for America’s constitutional freedoms. Habeasrncorpus is a well-known example, but the same period also producedrnthe independence of the judiciary and the liberty of thernjury to reach a verdict free of the dictates of the judge. This apparentrnupsurge of common sense arose not from any novel politicalrntheory, but from the growing recognition by both partisanrnextremes that everyone stood to benefit from protections ofrnthis sort. For quite hardheaded reasons, militants on both sidesrnsupported what in retrospect appear astonishingly liberalrnreforms, on the basis that one could never tell when one’s ownrninterests might require these protections. Codification of thesernindividual rights thus arose from an odd and entirely self-interestedrncoalition of enemies who realized that they had more tornfear from the state than from each other. Is there any chancernthat both sides in contemporary America might start seeingrneach other’s pain, and start dealing with the fundamental issuesrnof state power that we so urgently need to address? £rnRefusal to Exercisernby Gail WhiternMy friend at forty picks the slice of cheesernfrom her fast-food burger: its cholesterolrncontent would kill her. Runs five miles with ease,rntakes body to the gym for overhaulrnat frequent inter’als. Avoids the sun,rneats roughage, uses honey-based shampoo.rnAt first she thought she could stay beautifulrnforever. Now, healthy and lean will do.rnHer only hope of immortalityrnis eighty years of thinness. To preservernthat radiance, that vital vibrant glow—rnthe look of youth! If not the look, the nerve!rnSo she works out, but secretly she knowsrnone day the kidneys will refuse to drain;rna sudden clot will blossom like a rosernon the elaborate trellis of the brain.rnAnd nothing’s certain. Those whom sickness sparesrnmay meet their destined accident today.rnThen why should mortal creatures put on airs?rnGather the golden popcorn while you may.rnDECEMBER 1995/15rnrnrn