Saturday, March 22, 2008
"That these dead shall not have died in vain; The Decline of Corporatism and What it Represents in Terms of Restoration
Are we as a people worthy of the sacrifices herein claimed as a nationally asserted measure of our dedication to democratic sovereignty?Lincoln's challenge "that these dead shall not have died in vain," has become at once our national calling and our curse. His time honored words, spoken as a descendant of the Age of Enlightenment and its dream of liberty, "that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom—and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth," words of rededication to those noble principles, have now become as dust in the antiquated caissons of history.
Under the authoritarian power of "the Unitary Presidency," a corporatist government working to benefit globalist plutocracy, has usurped the common people of its heritage, descendant from the blood sacrifices inspired by ideals of the Enlightenment about which Lincoln spoke, and has transferred its civil rights, liberties and its promise of egalitarian economic opportunity back into the hands of the banal, self-aggrandizing and unenlightened elite from whose hands the power of government was wrested at the sacred apogee of The Age of Reason as we set out upon the historic way of science, reason and of the Philosophy of the Enlightened.
After years of Straussian machinations by his father, King George and his handler, Richard Cheney, now reign in unabashed arrogance on behalf of a corporatist nobility, whose coup d'etat has ruled from the shadows since November 22, 1963, when the renegade intelligence apparatchiks of the "Military-Industrial Complex," against which both Lincoln and Eisenhower warned, took control of the institutions of state and defense. With George Herbert Walker Bush as their titular head, they have exploited the ideological support of the Republican Party, whom they have manipulated through appeals to "law and order," martial invincibility and a covertly racist appeal for popular support by pandering to a narrowly defined ethnocentric myth of sexist, evangelical, white nationalism while scapegoating the impoverished, politically disenfranchised and economically disadvantaged members of minority groups in order to reduce the tax burden on the rich all the while redirecting treasury resources that constitutionally "insured the domestic welfare" into their own corporatist coffers.
Instead of proactively addressing racism, engaging it at its cultural roots, pandering politicians given to a "Southern Strategy" designed to insure the election of Ronald Reagan with the head of CIA, G.H.W Bush in his presidential shadow to rule and to guide him in all affairs, both private and public. Reagan's handlers accomplished this by exploiting the reactionary forces of racism among Southern white males, seething with resentment and inflamed by a discontent with the social and "moral" direction of the nation, endemic since the beginnings of the Civil Rights Movement of the 60s.
Thus, the "Conservative Movement," strengthened by the self-righteous forces of Jerry Falwell's Moral Majority, racist in its very foundations, set about the establishment of an authoritarian regime, undergirded by the very right-wing forces of the '63 coup with George H. W. Bush in its shadows, initiated the "drowning" of the "socialist government" set in place by FDR, against whom Prescott Bush himself had plotted a right-wing coup. As their chief strategist Grover Norquest infamously boasted, they intended to drown the remains of the New Deal "in its own bathwater" by bankrupting its domestic programs, such as welfare, Medicaid & Medicare and Social Security, then redirecting middle class taxpayer funded government resources to Straussian Neoconservative imperial aims described in the now notorious Policy for a New American Century (PNAC), to which our current Administration has attempted to irrevocably chain our national destiny, despite promises by virtually all the Democratic candidates who participated in the 2007-2008 primaries to withdraw from Iraq and deal through diplomatic channels with Iran to avoid a nuclear confrontation.
Bush and Cheney appear intractable and mean to set our course in the Middle East despite popular opposition. They will retire very wealthy if they can escape popular international demands that they be tried for war crimes. Certainly, there remains insufficient support in the American Congress for their impeachment.
In comparative historical terms, we are suffering the resurgence of the nefarious "Robber Barons" who came to power in the wake of the Civil War, against whom, both noted Republicans, Abraham Lincoln warned and Teddy Roosevelt struggled. Except that now, corporatist greed is not mitigated by the timeless virtue of Noblesse Oblige.
Due to their overreaching greed for empire and their failure of imagination, we have reached a crisis of opportunity, an historic nexus, afforded by the very system of "constitutional government" they manipulate. If as a nation we do not recognize this constitutional crisis and the economic precipice to which this treasonous cabal of corporatists has brought us through its abandonment and betrayal, we will fall into major economic and social decline while the elite "outsource" the economic resources by which we maintained our livelihood. Some economists have warned of collapse, as with the Soviet Union in the early 1990s after two decades of futile war in Afghanistan followed by revolution in its former Caspian satellites.
According to these macro economists, the cost of the Straussian neocon-influenced corporatist war-for-empire in the Middle East is now approaching three trillion dollars, a staggering sum leading to the dollar's decline as the coin of the realm, a crisis of investor faith in the American economy, and indicating a looming cultural and economic catastrophe for a once great and powerful nation whose coffers have been looted by exiting globalists.
Our enemies have played their part as well. By failing at the most basic virtue and practice of human compassion, the United States has administered a corporatist vision of foreign policy in the Middle East belied by cultural insensitivity and apathy regarding its affects upon the Islamic peoples of the region. Fundamentalist Islamist revolution has not occurred within a cultural vacuum, void of negative American influences. We have leeched away their natural resources and propped up colonialist authoritarian rulers who have repressed the people and made themselves wealthy and spiritually corrupt at the expense of the peoples of the land and their cultural traditions. "Modernization" has come too fast. The principles of Enlightenment Democracy -- "freedom, liberty, equality and justice for all" -- have been corrupted and mistranslated into an American foreign policy by rhetoricians of corporatism in order to justify and promote imperialistic-corporatist exploitation.
OPEC nations from Iran to Venezuela have determined to quicken the pace our demise by utilizing an aggressive monetary policy to destabilize the dollar and take back control of the oil markets. They are accomplishing this by transitioning to the Euro as the standard of exchange on the international markets. As long as the American plutocrats who controlled the federal banks could manipulate the rate of inflation to outpace the interest due on foreign debt, over the course of years they could actually squeeze a profit out of those who foolishly trusted the American system by granting us loans.
The Chinese recently figured out the monetary con-game of Reaganomics, as relentlessly reasserted and abused by Bush & Co, following the Clinton recovery. Last year, the Chinese began divesting themselves of American T-bills and trading their dollars for a variety of currencies in a measured pace so as to avert a run on the dollar that would leave them holding the bag. They can see it coming. The game is up now that the oil market is moving to the Euro and the feds can no longer manipulate the money supply and the value of the dollar. The dollar's value must now be determined by the exchange rates determined in open currency markets. Cheney himself has quietly begun to divest and transfer his personal wealth into European funds, stocks and bonds.
Barack Obama, supported by a brilliant cadre of economists who understand the criminal economic machinations of the corporatist plutocracy, represents our only institutional opportunity to seize the day for decades to come.
Unfortunately, the Clintons are not of the Progressive Liberal perspective that would spell effective change on behalf of the American people. Democratic Party loyalists must realize this. The Clintons are moderates, quasi-conservatives who call themselves "New Democrats," as does Joesph Lieberman, who in 2006 betrayed his party and the democratic electoral process in a desperate attempt at damage control on behalf of Likud-connected neocons and the Israel Lobby they represent. Although, they have proven themselves capable of restoring economic stability if they do nothing more than disenfranchise the very plutocrats who are stealing away to Europe with our economic resources, the Clintons themselves are owning to the Israel Lobby themselves and cannot emerge from the election free of the financial tentacles that envelope them within the neocon-directed sphere of foreign policy influence. If they betray their campaign financiers and loyalists, the Clintons set themselves up for the very Mossad subversion of his/her administration made infamous during the Lewinsky Scandal and subsequent impeachment proceedings, political subversion that has become all too publically prominent, as befits their ascendant international power from within the bowels of the American intelligence and financial systems, themselves. Witness the widespread "honey traps" now being sprung by the Mossad, who since its incipiency has been enmeshed within the CIA system within which George H.W. Bush has had no little influence as well.
In the realm of domestic policy, the Clintons are enwrapped as well by major lobbyists who represent powerful corporatist interests. NAFTA has become the notorious symbol of their complicity with corporatists who would exploit the common people of the Americas while turning the backs on the American Labor Movement who naively helped bring them to power.
During the eight-year neoconservative interregnum -- known as the Bush Administration -- between Bill Clinton's final days in office, along with his final commendable attempts to bring about peace in the Middle East -- that and the long anticipated fall of the Bush Administration into ignobility and infamy -- the Clintons demonstrated an unfortunate vulnerability to such corruptions of corporatism as made infamous by Bush and Cheney and their crony style of government by-of-and-for capitalism. Although pronounced "legal" by the corporatist system's own vain definitions, the Clintons have shown themselves welcoming to courtship by those seeking insider influence. They have consistently accepted the vitiated offerings that leak from a corrupted system that enables influence peddling.
All the while, our hopes for common justice would have had us at the work of dispelling such corruption while the Clintons set traditional American ethics aside in favor of "the way the system works." Numerous scandals, including Hillary's alleged bilking of a Hollywood producer for campaign cash and Bill's influence peddling to a Canadian mining magnate in order to set up negotiations and kick-back contaminated uranium mining contracts in Uzbekistan, are waiting to emerge.
This window of political opportunity will open and close during the coming 2008 November elections. If we do not act against corporatist plans for a third Bush regime incarnate through John McCain, an uncompromising hawk driven by blind ambition to "yes-man" status with the Bush family, we may never have another opportunity to restore republican democracy and cleanse our government of special interest lobbies who have metastasized from within into a life-threatening cancer.
Barack Obama's charismatic idealism, his bi-racial heritage, his open embrace of The Bill of Rights and The Rights of Man, his history as law professor, his multi-cultural roots, his religious tolerance and independence from authoritarian religious influences, his common values and his arrogance in the face of bribery by lobbyists -- lets call the influence of lobbyists what it is -- grant to him the integrity and progressive bona fides required for the reform movement that is ahead of us.
Tuesday, March 18, 2008
You will only "get this" if you think, like I do at times, in esoterically subversive paradigms. I see a deeply subversive role in Barack Obama, almost a sacred role, as nationalist trickster-- that is, in the African American incarnation of the tribal trickster role, but in white shirt and tie, speaking a perfect American dialect of English with eloquence and erudition at a level only an archetypal visitation from the heavenlies could accomplish in messianic splendor.
I'm thinking of a specific myth narrative as old as Africa itself, one that was transported to America in slave ships. In my American political narrative, I see Obama as the totemic medicine monkey whose role it is to restore humanity to its greatest spiritual ideals; I see the sell-out Democratic Party gone blandly aristocratic as the ferocious lion, much like the blathering lion in the Wizard of Oz who lacked courage; and I see the grand old Republican Party in the role of all powerful corporatist Elephant.
This is the ancient tribal story retold on American soil by an African-American trickster, the most famous of whom was "Dolemite," the comedian Rudy Ray Moore. Translation of this tragic/comedic tribal narrative into modern political relevance requires the bending of the archetypal imagination. It emerges resurgent from its archetypal depths, evoked by widespread fears of a Democratic Party betrayal. It reveals itself persistently, grudging, within the multi-layered fabric of the American racial power struggle, a struggle that presents with an insistent sense of developing irony, one that threatens to engulf and transform the political role of candidate Barack Obama into that of tribal trickster and dress him in the culturally presentable disguise of the sparkling clean, charismatically yuppiefied, high achieving Middle Class American incarnation of:
Rudy Ray Moore as "Dolemite" narrating "The Signifying Monkey"
"It's a jungle out there"
Sunday, March 9, 2008
Saturday, President Bush vetoed a bill that would have outlawed the Central Intelligence Agency's use of torture against suspected terrorists and insurgents.
Choosing some of the very interrogation techniques used against American troops by the Japanese and the German Gestapo during WWII, torture techniques whose history can be traced to the time of the Spanish Inquisitions, Bush rejected the opportunity to reiterate a moral standard for the United States, one that would have expressed agreement with United Nations Convention Against Torture and sanctions outlined by the Geneva Conventions relative to the treatment of prisoners of war.
Thus, in choosing the low ground, George W. Bush made it clear to the world that his imperialist military objectives in the Middle East take priority over the myth of an Enlightened American Democracy and long-held traditions of American fairness and morality during times of war.
By DEB RIECHMANN, Associated Press Writer
Sat Mar 8, 6:43 PM ET WASHINGTON
Democrats and human rights advocates criticized President Bush's veto Saturday of a bill that would have banned the CIA from using simulated drowning and other coercive interrogation methods to gain information from suspected terrorists.
Bush said such tactics have helped foil terrorist plots. His critics likened some methods to torture and said they sullied America's reputation around the world.
"This president had the chance to end the torture debate for good, yet he chose instead to leave the door open to use torture in the future," said Democratic Sen. Dianne Feinstein of California, a member of the Senate Intelligence Committee.
She said Bush ignored the advice of 43 retired generals and admirals and 18 national security experts, including former secretaries of state and national security advisers, who supported the bill.
"Torture is a black mark against the United States," she said. [...clip...]
In addition to waterboarding, the field manual prohibits hooding prisoners or putting duct tape across their eyes; stripping prisoners naked; and forcing prisoners to perform or mimic sexual acts. It also prohibits beating, burning or physically hurting prisoners in other ways; subjecting them to hypothermia or mock executions. It does not allow food, water and medical treatment to be withheld. Dogs may not be used in any aspect of interrogation.
Waterboarding involves strapping a person down and pouring water over his cloth-covered face to create the sensation of drowning. It has been traced back hundreds of years to the Spanish Inquisition and is condemned by nations around the world and human rights organizations as torture.
In a memo to CIA employees Saturday, CIA Director Michael Hayden said the Army Field Manual does not "exhaust the universe" of lawful interrogation techniques. "There are methods in the CIA's program that have been briefed to our oversight committees, are fully consistent with the Geneva Convention and current U.S. law and are most certainly not torture," Hayden wrote.
Sen. Jay Rockefeller, chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, said he had heard nothing to suggest that the CIA, through enhanced interrogation methods, had obtained information to thwart a terrorist attack. "On the other hand, I do know that coercive interrogations can lead detainees to provide false information in order to make the interrogation stop," said Rockefeller, D-W.Va.
There also are concerns that the use of waterboarding would undermine U.S. human rights efforts overseas and could place Americans at greater risk of being tortured if they are captured abroad.
"The president's refusal to sign this crucial legislation into law will undermine counterterrorism efforts globally and delay efforts to rebuild U.S. credibility on human rights," said Elisa Massimino, Washington director for Human Rights First.
Rarely lacking in blatant demonstrations of its Zealot Party bona fides, the Christianist right-wing, who in 2000 and in 2004 came together in coalition with the corporatist Neoconservative Movement to elect George W. Bush based on his promise of forwarding a Christianist agenda, continues to maintain its silence on the issue of torture despite its incongruence with the teachings and ethics of Yeshua ben-Yosef, none other than the revered founder of Christianity himself, who as the recognized Essene Davidic lineage holder of the Jewish Messianic Movement during the Roman Occupation was betrayed to the Romans by Zealot-sicarii elements of the Jewish insurgency, of which the Apostle Judas was a part.
Ironically, Yeshua had promoted the active non-violence of a religious and spiritual evangelization and conversion of the Roman Empire in order to bring about the foretold Kingdom of Heaven, rather than the military conquest promoted by the Zealot Party who rejected him.
What does this stultifying silence say about the Christianist right-wing, their former Republican presidential candidate Rev. Mike Huckabee, about Rev. John Hagee who endorsed John McCain, about their stand on torture, "the war on terror," the war in Iraq and about their support for Bush & Company's hawkish stance on Iran and Syria, as well as the SAFTA-resistant South American republics of Venezuela, Ecuador and Bolivia?
WERE YOU THERE