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Wed

30

Jan

2008

Why I Did Not Vote – The State Of Disunion - An Open Letter Of Defiance
Wednesday, 30 January 2008 00:36
by Michael O’McCarthy
Recommendations to the Democratic Party "Agents of Change" Obama and Edwards.
The President of the United States has once again lied once again to the American people and to the world.

We live not in a time of "concern" about our economy, we do not live in a time success, and we do not live in a time of victory over the agents of terror. We live in a time economic and ecological rape, a time of treason and our country is represented by war criminals. Our nation is held the hostage of dysfunction, disunity and political cowardice.

The Republican Party is the party of this liar – and its apparent heirs continue the lie. We seem once again to be the prisoners of the Democrats to offer a change from this intolerable state. And thus, last Saturday in my resident state came the time to vote. I chose not to and the reason is simple: Neither, Clinton, Obama or Edwards represented progressive change.

Secondly, this "democratic process" is not only rigged by those who have stolen it, bought it and subverted it for their own selfish purpose, but has been negated by the alienated, disaffected masses who simply will no longer participate in the process. Whether by deliberate act of political refusal or passive disinterest or substantive ignorance, they are not moved to play an active part in their political future.
The one "progressive" alternative to the state controlled by Democrats and Republicans was Dennis Kucinich. His platform for change was rational, humane and doable – if there was a Camelot minus the apparent need for a White Knight, it could be found in his vision. Yet his percent of any primary or caucus was negligible. That was before the ruling class machine shut him down, banning him from debate after debate. Thus, the once sparkling, yet daunted, quirky prince that he is too succumbed to passing his baton to one of the Party favorites, Barack Obama. Practical electoral politics or not, it tainted his banner and disaffected those who believe in his campaign for progressive change.

History tells me that what we are about to get in 2008 is more of the same since the "election" of John F. Kennedy in 1960. That is, in my opinion, when the military-industrial-corporate state began to consolidate its rule over this nation. Coming into play after WWII the US became a gluttonous consumer nation; simultaneously it expanded its imperialistic range worldwide. Secondly, the political machines of both the Republican and Democratic parties ramped up Red Scare witch hunts that deterred any "progressive" political alternative by branding any and all dissenting opinion or movements either communist or offshoots of world communism. Nothing has changed: the US foreign policy is economic imperialism with a militarist interventionist arm. Its domestic policy is one of corporate exploitation, greed and deliberate social repression.

Today Clinton, Obama and Edwards represent the moderate wing of the corporate state’s ruling government machine and by their proposals and practice promise to deliver more of the same. History is my primer.

When Kennedy gained the presidency his image represented a significant change in tone from the stodgy, managers of the growing corporate world; his image was of integration, cool jazz, urbane sophistication that meant a change in the post-world war nation symbolized by segregation and crew cuts. And in part there was "truth in advertising." Kennedy had a liberal attitude towards blacks, an advanced view of science and culture. He and Jackie projected an air of liberalism and haute culture that was exciting and enticed a very different world than that of Ike and Mamie.

What was also true was that he was a rabidly anti-Communist, military imperialist and practiced the "black craft" of assassination and terrorism as foreign policy. He did this both against his arch cultural rivals Fidel Castro and Che Guevara and in continuing the Eisenhower-Nixon - CIA incursion into South East Asia.

That he may have changed course in his second term, had he lived to be re-elected is speculative. You live with what you do, not what you intend to do. Whether he was assassinated by right wing elements in the US or as a counter-opts move by Castro remains unknown. The great paradox is that he was an enemy to both. His father’s dance with the mob – his reneging on the deals made explicitly and implicitly with the mob-CIA on Cuba – his expressed intention in negating the oil depletion allowance seen as treasonous to the oil rich Texans who hated him, put him into a dance with death. Hooray for a modern America – What’a country!

Whatever "hope" Kennedy brought with him died with him. What followed was the tortured tenure of Lyndon Baines Johnson, heir to the Civil Rights mandate of JFK and patron to "MacNamara’s One Hundred Thousand." Therein the corporate-military predecessor to Donald Rumsfeld skip-loaded one hundred thousand poor, young males out of Johnson’s aborted War on Poverty into the Killing Fields of Southeast Asia. Though Johnson would win a presidential term in the White House against the implied Atom Bomb threat of Barry Goldwater, his unpopularity would drive him from the presidency and set the stage for the resuscitation of Richard "the crook" Milhouse Nixon. It would also create the arena for the massacre in Chicago of the last of the legitimacy the Democratic Party would have.

In the interim Malcolm X (1965) and Martin Luther King, Jr. and Robert Kennedy (1968) were murdered. Renegade followers of the "honorable Elijah Mohammed" of the Black Muslims allegedly assassinated Malcolm, the heir to Frederick Douglas and Harriet Tubman. Martin by an evidently lone, looned-out white guy with an unfathomable conspiracy trailing behind him. And the last Prince of Camelot, Bobby Kennedy, allegedly by a Palestinian irate over Kennedy’s support for the oppressive role of Israel in the occupation and destruction of the Palestinian homelands. If there were any "hope" left alive it was killed en masse in the coming "police riot" in Chicago.

In the 1968 Democratic Party convention the role of party boss Daley and party pick Vice President, social liberal and war hawk Hubert Humphrey, confronted the anti-war forces within the party snuffing them out with the aid of Daley’s police. Outside Hoover’s FBI and Daily black clad police thugs attacked the insurgent forces of radicals for social change with a police riot.

In the greater milieu’s cultural mix of national anti-war demonstrations, FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover and the CIA loosened the police dogs of repression and murder against a growing black power – cum black liberation movement and the primarily white peace and justice movement with the continuation of both COINTELPRO and OPERATION CHAOS. Democracy had not faced a crisis of this proportion since the 1940’s Red Scare and the rise of the anti-Communist domestic repression led by Senator Joseph McCarthy and his henchmen, Roy Cohen and parenthetically, Robert Kennedy.

Enter the eight-year aborted term of Nixon. He came to office with a "secret plan to end the war" in Vietnam and left South East Asia after threatening to nuke Hanoi if the North Vietnamese didn’t return to negotiations. His foresight for capitalist development in opening "the door to China" is heralded as his greatest achievement, but if you understand the growth of his ideological children, the Neo-Cons and the development of Globalization, you understand that Nixon is better capsulated as corporate architect than international diplomat. But the real Nixon showed up at the Watergate where his paranoia fixe was revealed, that and Hoover’s despotic undermining of American democracy as Nixon tried to abort the Constitution.

Nixon’s resignation and pardon was followed by a moderate corporate state politician Gerald Ford who concluded the war in South East Asia and muddled along for the next year, business as usual.

Come 1974 and Democratic Party moderate Jimmy Carter would take the reins of power. He symbolized the "new south" with both his stand against segregation and his policy of opening up the depressed South to the invasion of corporations that created the "right to work" boom of the "Sun Belt." Under Carter the economics of inflation and recession crippled American productivity; his ceding the Panama Canal and providing support for the Sandanistas made him targets of the Republican right wing; this was balanced by his intervention in Afghanistan giving the Soviet Union "its Vietnam." When the American positioned dictator, the Sha of Iran, was overthrown and employees (including CIA operatives) were taken hostage Carter appeared ineffectual and the issue became a paramount one for Carter’s hopes from re-election.

The specter of Nixon rose from the dead in the form of a congenial appearing, General Electric TV commercial model and somewhat talented actor-companion of a monkey named Bozo. Ronald Reagan was the perfect panacea for the troubled American psyche. And his minions, George H.W. Bush of the CIA and Oliver North of the US military’s war crimes in Vietnam and their cadre of creeps were the perfect Republican substitutes of Haldeman, Erlichman and Mitchell. Making a secret deal with the Iranians the sabotaged Carter’s negotiations to get the hostages back and launched a mass murder war against the democratically elected Sandanista government, thus, the poorly prosecuted Iran-Contra scandal.

Reaganonomics would give a new name to rich folk’s capitalism: what excess trickled down the legs of the wealthy was given as sup for the working and poor. His legacy continued in the most ineffectual of ways under the bumbling G.H.W Bush.

Then came the Arkansas version of Camelot: The man from "Hope," amateur saxophonist, and huckster Governor Bill Clinton and his "two-fer" wife Hillary rose to the national promise as the new liberals, pretender to Camelot. Aside from his penchant for Big Macs and spouse cheating, Clinton offered a rock and roll presidency with a musical score by Fleetwood Mack. The nation’s "first black president" Clinton offered a new version of equitable social economics: The poor needed to get off welfare and following his lead march into McDonalds. But rather than eating gaseous poison, they were challenged to sign-up for managerial school, thus, experience the American dream. He immediately followed that mandate by announcing the end of "the era of big government", then destroyed the social safety net and created a new brand of economic imperialism, called Globalization via NAFTA.

Many of the old new Left, battered from the wars and massacres of the 1960 and ‘70’s (self included,) slipped into a bout of self-delusion and signed on for the ride with "hope." What we got for our selfishness is George W. Bush, a self-delusional, unrecovered alcoholic neurotic and amateur dictator, a Federal bench and Supreme Court of reactionaries, a government turned into a corporate-state, would-be dictatorship, wars of uncontrollable magnitude, the loss of Constitutional rights, a reputation world-wide akin to Nazi Germany, three Democratic "agent of change pretenders or wannabes," and two or three faux fascists running as Republicans.

Enter the "keep hope alive" of a new, rainbow-sky Camelot in the form of Barack Obama. A Democratic centrist, cum inspirational speaker whose policies proffer an acceptable sheen of liberal, Harvard school tolerance the Democratic Party corporate-state wing loves. Trailing behind him comes the "born in the mill town, USA," of millionaire lawyer, ex-senator, John Edwards. His banner of South Carolina populism had not been seen since the days of "Pitchfork" Ben Tillman, albeit shed of Tillman’s racist madness. Yet he continues cling to the noxious notion that the predatory insurance industry be party to universal health care, maintain an corporate state imperialist foreign policy position, and champion the use of the death penalty while aware of the great disparity of the poor and of color on death rows.

I am a fan of the current Senator Kennedy’s impassioned liberal fights in Congress for a more equitable domestic agenda – even with all its flaws - and with his standup against the wanna-be dictator Bush. I wax nostalgic still when it comes to John’s tortured family and can empathize with Carolyn’s longing for something very different than that rich, reactionary, pallid Christian, faux cracker from Texas. But I am not climbing on this bandwagon again.

The "national interests" of the United States ought not include support for an imperialist Israel; the usurpation of oil that belongs to the people of the Middle East; support for its misogynist, class dictators, a military the makes the Roman Legions seem like the French Army of WWII.

I reject the notion that Corporations must play any role in determining health insurance, Social Security, employment policies, rebuild of the national infrastructure, tax policies or control of the nation’s media access. Corporations are by law individuals and entitled to no more or less than that. The legacy of their charter is that they exist to better serve the national interest. The current ones serve only themselves, if that. More and more they serve only a new class of predatory C-level thieves.

I prefer Democrats to Republicans because in this time and place the super-structure of an American dictatorship has been established by the Republicans with the pathetic acquiescence of the Democratic Congress. It can be argued that perhaps with an Obama or Edwards progressives and real liberals can redact the damage and put into place a more "democratic" government that will rein in the worst of corporate control. That would allow progressives to become true "agents of change" and organize a truly democratic form of government. I am skeptical. Of that history holds me skeptical.

But critique without suggestion is cynicism. I not yet a cynic. Thus, these few recommendations for the two standard bears of "change," Obama and Edwards. Hillary Clinton is not only not an agent of change, she is the worst of corporate clones and a puppet of the military’s "defense industry.>

What I believe is necessary to drive the democratic platform to a progressive position is covered under 7 topics, although so much more is desirable:

  1. Health care.
  2. The war.
  3. The economy.
  4. Constitutional rights.
  5. The prison industrial gulag complex.
  6. Domestic violence against women and children.
  7. A national program of ecological health and refurbishment.
  8. Universal, aptitude driven education.

    1- Universal Health Care: The one reason that the American people shy away from Single Payer government administered health care is because of the negative take on "government." The candidates cannot have it both ways - opposing the corporate stranglehold on Americans and inviting the predatory corporations to be a part of the partnership. After due consideration they need to be the champions of true "change" and adopt the Kucinich position. Further to call for full assistance to the elderly, that they remain independent and mobile to the best of their ability; with aid for those who need it to do so.

    2- The War: They needs to reach out to the activist veteran’s movement and without exception, make the call for both immediate and total withdrawal and a cut off of funds for combat ops in Iraq and for a United Nations force to bring Osama Bin Laden to trial as a war criminal. They need to speak even more emphatically about the mistreatment vets from Nam and the Middle East wars are getting. They need to campaign for a revamped, "sanctity of the nation only" defense policy with an inclusion of a demand for international cooperation in matters of terrorism and human rights. They must demand that corporate lobbyists be barred from contact with the Pentagon.

    3- The economy: the proposed "rebate stimulation package" is a paltry joke, on the working poor – working and middle classes. The rebate is worth maybe two months of energy cost.

    Both unemployment insurance and food stamp programs must be extended until the end of this corporate-negligence caused recession. The stimulation must take place immediately and the rebates are trebled proportionately. Demanding that congress cut the combat ops funds from the war alone will cover the cost. Further, demand both a change in the Social Security cap and the tax rates for both corporate and wealthy individuals. Immediately publish budget projections that will fully cover Medicare.

    4- Address the unconstitutional nature of the Patriot and Military Commissions Act, demanding the repeal both. Release all prisoners being held under the unconstitutional laws.

    5- The correctional-industrial-gulag complex: They must address the horrific gulag of prisons – that the prisoners and the family and friends of the families are experiencing.

    It is a human rights issue - We know the egregious injustice foisted upon the black and Latino and poor.

    It is a bread and butter issue as well: the 2.4 million are NOT carried in the unemployment statistics. While they are housed they are a huge tax burden; while on parole they remain a tax burden; the high rate of recidivism only adds more to the tax burden. The failure of local, state, and federal governments to create appropriately funded programs for the treatment of drug related offenders not only adds to the tax burden, it increases that burden and does not address the cause.

    They must denounce all forms of capitol punishment. Period. First, giving the state the right to murder ultimately empowers the state with the "right" to murder anyone it can.

    It serves no other purpose than revenge and as a barbaric outlet for emotional retaliation.

    It cannot be administered fairly because of both the race and class discrimination inherent in the social body.

    It is barbaric: there is no "humane" way to murder a person who has been condemned. They live to die every day of their confined lives. By far, most of those on death row are men and women who suffer from an admixture of mental incompetence and mental dysfunction.

    The "killers of children" exception bears no fruit other than revenge and the mental dysfunction of murdering child molesters is of record.

    The inclusion of "terrorists" is repugnant on its face. Especially so given destruction of Constitutional rights of the "accused," the current national fear driven campaign to label any dissenter a potential "subversive – radical – extremist – suspect of being an enemy combatant, i.e., "terrorist."

    6- They must address the epidemic of domestic violence against woman and children: In the last primary state, South Carolina ranked 6th in the nation in domestic violence reports. Not one word was said of this continuing epidemic of battery and homicide against one half of the national population. Woman are the target of not only culturally acceptable domestic violence, they are the objects of sexual attacks in disproportionate numbers to the overall population because cultural mysogeny is acceptable.

    7- They must campaign for a national project to bring about ecological health and a refurbishment of the ecology of the nation, hemisphere and planet.

    8- The public education system was a universal advance for the poor and working people. It has become a disgrace. The candidates must demand a universally funded program of education from the earliest need to the highest accomplishment in the fields of science and skilled trades, social sciences and culture, wherever the talent and need demands.

    Not only are these principled positions, they will, if wholeheartedly advocated and fought for through the remainder of the campaign be rallying points for a people’s campaign. Further, they will drive a more humane Democratic Platform. If we are to have progressive reform, these are the key elements.

    If championed I believe they will rally not only progressives but also all those who would benefit from "change."
 
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Mike Price said:

0
C.E.O.s (Clinton, Edwards, Obama)...some food for thought...
Dear pondering Kucinich supporters,

Just do a search (Google) any of the following key word threads:

Clinton, lobbyist, Murdock
Edwards, lobbyist, Murdock
Obama, lobbyist, Murdock

If these three corporate backed attorneys are not willing to give
credit to Kucinich for the positions they are all now espousing, or to
fight for his right to participate in the debates, or to fight for the
right of voters in Florida in 2000...in Ohio in 2004 or this year
across the country...and...they are all guilty of enabling the Bush
administration and the GOP...what makes you think that they will give
YOU any voice in government...it will be status quo...endless war, no
health care for all and economic gimmicks as usual...the only
difference will be in whose buddies will get lucrative no-bid
contracts...eh...Clinton, Edwards and Obama are not much different
than who is office now...and we have not even gotten to their voting
records...

IF KUCINICH IS ON THE BALLOT...VOTE KUCINICH !

Speak for Kucinich, Support Kucinich, Contribute to Kucinich...just because he has been called to another battle front in Ohio doesn't mean the effort stops on all fronts...many states are continuing the campaign big time in order to garner as many delegates as possible before the Democratic convention in Denver, Colorado...be part of that effort...VOTE...

IMHO,

Mike Price
Arizona
 
January 29, 2008
Votes: +0

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