Sunday, July 15, 2012

High Popalorum

Without a doubt, America is in deep trouble...deep I tell you. We have to two party political system that has long been own by special interest groups acting on behalf of their corporate masters. What was conceived as a government of "citizen legislators" by our Founding Fathers has evolved (or devolved) into professional con-men (and women) running perhaps the biggest confidence game in human history. They blame each other for the problems that they've created together, and all the time work behind the scenes to find ways of bilking with people out of more money. Now that's partisanship at work! They promise this or that nation billions of dollars without so much as a by your leave to their constituents. Why is that? They were elected to represent us, not to assume they have free gratis to the public's checkbook, and certainly not to serve corporate interests while giving us lip service and the occasional crumbs. Parties changes and taxes still go up. The Washington crowd lives in a world all their own. They are almost always rich to start with, and have very little comprehension of the daily struggles most us go through; buy medicine or food or which bill to pay on now and which one can wait a little longer. They have no trouble running up trillion dollar debts with no thought of how to pay it off except more taxes on each generation. We the People have found ourselves sold into economic serfdom by the very people we elected to protect our interests. Earlier this year, the highest court in the land, the US Supreme Court made an tremendous judicial blunder with their "Citizens United" ruling. They in effect voted to give corporations "citizen hood". Aren't these people supposed to be judicial scholars or something? Did they leave their common sense in their chambers when they donned their black robes and mounted the bench? The last I checked, corporations weren't people. They were artificial entities created to accomplish a particular function (usually to make money for its owners or shareholders). They employ people...all kinds of people with differing social, educational, and political outlooks. So, how can corporations be given "free speech" when it is incapable of speaking with a single clear political voice the way an individual can? Sure, corporations can speak with a single voice on some topics, such as its stated objectives according to its mission statement. A oil company exists to find and exploit oil and gas and make a profit the same way a shoe company exists to make and sell shoes. But can either speak on behalf its self on matters of politics? Should it be able to even do so? The answer is, of course, no. A corporation can't. It's sole interest is its own well being, not the public's. It's the job of the legislator to protector our interests. So why did the Supreme Court make such a blunder? Corporations have long controlled American politics. One of our greatest war time leaders and presidents, Dwight Eisenhower, said to the American People in his final address in January 17, 1961 that "In the councils of government, we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military-industrial complex. The potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists and will persist. We must never let the weight of this combination endanger our liberties or democratic processes. We should take nothing for granted. Only an alert and knowledgeable citizenry can compel the proper meshing of the huge industrial and military machinery of defense with our peaceful methods and goals, so that security and liberty may prosper together". We can't say we weren't warned. Lobbyists, or the "E Street" crowd as they're occasionally called, act as the agents for their corporate masters and their toadies in Congress. Campaigns have now become so expensive that the average citizen has little chance at getting elected. Unless you're independently wealthy, you must sell yourself and your ideals. You become owned. Did you know that the ole Soviet Politburo actually had a higher turnover than Congress? Makes one wonder which institution was more democratic doesn't it? Meanwhile, you and I are given the illusion of choice while both parties practice diversionary politics to keep us off balance and away from the "man behind the curtain"...the corporate puppet masters. What this ruling did, in effect, was to reveal to all the real masters in Washington. No more illusions. No more curtain. What can be done? Actually, We the People aren't as weak as we're lead to believe. The Supreme Court's misruling pulls back the curtain to reveal the puppet masters and their errand boys and girls. It gives corporations the "right" to pour as much money as they want into campaigns, while you and I are still capped, as if we really have a chance of matching even a fraction of their money. Seems some have more "free speech" than others. But the one thing it didn't give corporations, at least not yet, is the right to vote. If we are to save our Republic, we have to vote, even if it means holding our noises to do it. But here's a trick. Vote for the challenger. Vote the Independent or third party. Why? For several reasons. First, the incumbents, especially those who've been there awhile, are counting on a low turnout. It gives them more control over the outcome since they'll be sure to have their people at the polls. Secondly, even if the incumbents still manages to win, it sends a message to them and others that they're vulnerable. Special interest groups don't like that. They like a sure thing. They're more likely to hedge their bets. Third, it encourages more people to run. The more the better. A challenger win brings new ideas and energy. It weakens the bond to special interest money. Finally, forget about political party loyalty. There is no such thing except for those to lazy or weak minded to research the issues for themselves and make their own decision. Parties are a ruse to divide us. I think the master of political power politics, Louisiana's own Huey "Kingfish" Long said it best when he made his famous speech about the Republican and Democrat parties. When “The Kingfish” was asked to compare the Republican and Democratic Parties, he would tell the story about a traveling salesman who offered two patent medicines. One was called “High Popalorum,” which was taken from the bark of a tree from the top on down. The other tonic was “Low Popahirum,” which was taken from the bark of a tree from the bottom on up. Governor Long said, “The only difference I’ve found in Congress between the Republican and Democratic leadership is that one of them is skinning us from the ankle up and the other from the ear down.” Amen Huey.

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