Hypothetically, what if you discovered that a Democratic candidate for president or for the Senate was actually a secret Wall Street plant, who will run as a lefty, but once in office, work solely in the interest of bringing about the Wall Street agenda of privatizing schools, lowering wages, destroying unions, dismantling environmental regulations, and generally turning the United States into a full blown corporate subsidiary. Would you still support that candidate?
That is the question Progressives need to ask themselves because that is exactly what has happened to the Democratic party. We have been infiltrated. They talk a good game during the campaign. But once in office, they quietly chip away at everything real Democrats built since the Great Depression.
I would rather purge the corporate shills from the Democratic party and fight the corporatists directly than continue supporting Democrats in name only while they achieve the same things the Republicans are trying to only slower and more subversively.
At least Republicans are honest about their treasonous agenda - selling out the working people of this country for the benefit of an international corporatacracy.
With Democrats, you only know you've been stabbed in the back after it's too late to do anything about it.
Our country is under attack on all fronts.
- Political warfare, where the institutions of our democracy are being subverted at every level from bribery to election fraud.
- Information warfare, where all of our main channels of communication, internet, newspapers, television, radio, our own airwaves are being used against us.
- Economic warfare where only a few "elite" bankers can hijack the entire economy and hold it for trillions of our grandchildren's money in ransom.
- Environmental warfare where these same thieves are pillaging and destroying the natural world for their own enrichment.
- And now we're even subjected to classical warfare methods as dissenters are rounded up and put in prison and our personal communications and information are being surveilled and collected in ways Orwell could never have imagined.
This is not class war. It's war, pure and simple. The monied elites who rule our country are enemies of democracy. And they are using everything they have to keep the will of the people from being manifest.
This is not Sarajevo during the Bosnian war. This is an American city. It wasn't destroyed by Republicans. It was destroyed by a bipartisan consensus that Alan Greenspan, acolyte of Ayn Rand, purveyor of the idea that free markets could replace democracy, and even law enforcement, is a really smart guy.
I still believe in the Democratic party. But only a Democratic party that is willing to choose sides. For in this war, there is no in between. You are either working for the people. Or you are working for the corporatacracy.
There is no "moderate" response to the full scale attack we are suffering. No "centrist" position. The situation doesn't allow it.
We have to have our Egyptian moment, or our children will grow up in a very different America then we did. They will grow up in a world with no viable working, middle class. Where corporations run our schools, prisons, even our roads. There will be no parks or libraries or community centers. Our drinking water, which is already reaching crisis levels of scarcity, will have been poisoned by the insane practice of hydrofracking as fossil fuel supplies grow more and more scarce. More oil spills, more extinct species. More droughts and more freak weather. More insanity by an increasingly deformed and impervious parasite class.
They will grow up in a world like Detroit. Except much, much worse. We all know it. We see the writing on the wall. It is only a severe cognitive dissonance that compels us to continue on the same path, to continue buying into this charade we call the American political system, hoping for change and relief from politicians who can't even tell the truth about the most fundamental issue of our time: global warming.
Even if we have our Egyptian moment, there will be no change or relief unless we fundamentally alter our political system in two ways:
1. We must completely remove the influence of money on our political system. No other remedy is possible, on any issue, until we make it a crime to bribe a politician. And that's all a campaign contribution is. Bribery. As other have said many times before, how we finance our elections is a separate issue. There are a thousand ways to do it that will serve the public interest. But first, we must criminalize bribing politicians with campaign contributions. Period.
2. We must remove the control of our public airwaves from private interests. We have to get over the notion that our public airwaves are private property to be used against us. Our democracy has, essentially, ceased to function under the influence of the corporatist dominance of our national media.
Restoring the Fairness Clause is not enough. We the people license our airwaves to private corporations with the expectation that those corporations use those airwaves in the public interest. They are ours. And we have every right to ensure that they never again be used as a weapon against us.
Bribing our politicians, or more accurately, owning our politicians, and controlling the mass media are the two primary methods by which the corporations have seized control of our country. Until we remedy these two, change will be impossible.
Bringing about these two fundamental changes should be the singular focus of any people's movement, progressive or otherwise. Anything else is just entertainment. We're about to enter another presidential election season. It will be between two candidate who are chosen for us by the "serious people." Billions will be spent, or close to it. The networks will launch new dazzling visual devices. The sleeping industry of pundits and pollsters and anyone able to get a TV gig spouting daily drivel will reawaken. The political class of Democrats and Republicans will stock up on their popcorn for the Big Show. And it will be a big show.
There will be endless, two week cycles of manufactured scandals, gotcha moments, and Breaking News!!! EVERYTHING will be discussed. From who looks presidential to who can appeal to white middle class males in the South, no stone will be unturned. Except of course those that concern what really matters to real people.
Sure, there will be big discussion on how to "grow" the economy and "create jobs". But neither candidate will actually discuss why we have over 20% unemployment. Hell, they won't even acknowledge that we have over 20% unemployment. They won't discuss the renormalization of our labor "market" to that of China's. They won't discuss that almost all new jobs are in the video rental industry, or McDonalds. They won't discuss the privatization of the commonwealth or how we're selling our roadways to foreign countries.
They won't discuss that in order for our planet to survive we need to not just stop pumping the atmosphere with greenhouse gasses, but actually figure out a way to remove them. Or that the idea that trying to continuously grow our economy as though we live on an infinite planet is suicide and that growing our economy in the fossil fuel age is like growing a giant fossil fuel bonfire the size of Rhode Island.
And they won't discuss that our country is under attack from a corporatacracy that has no national loyalties or loyalty to anyone or anything other than devouring and accumulating.
And when it's all said and done, and the last vote has been cast, the trajectory of our nation towards imminent demise will not have altered one bit. It is true that there is a difference between the two parties. Velocity. One party will get us to our demise much quicker than the other. One party is more insane than the other.
But it is also true that the more insane the party, the more likely the people will be to rise up against that insanity. It's a boiling frog thing. The Republicans are at least honest about their insanity. They hang it out there for all to see, and revolt against.
To be sure, what we're seeing in Wisconsin and elsewhere, is just the same agenda, sped up. Like watching a fast forwarded video. But it's the same free market, Greenspanian, neoliberal agenda the Democrats have been acquiescing to for decades. Ever since they made the deal, way back in the 80s. "If you can't beat 'em, join 'em."
Ever since they've been only two degrees of separation from Ayn Rand. First was trade policy where they, the Democrats, fucked labor, by opening up China and any other little country that allowed slave labor and allowed American businesses to move all the jobs overseas. And then slowly but steadily, they, the Democrats, acquiesced on social programs, school funding, and the general Greenspanian philosophy that our democratic government, the only check against despotism our Founders left us, is "the problem." The Democrats did all this. And they knew what they were doing, fucking the middle and working class, when they did it.
The real fight is between the corporatacracy and working people. Never has that distinction been more vivid than it is now. We are literally fighting for our lives against a tangible, identifiable enemy. And it's high time for Democrats to pick a side.
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