The War That Democracy Is Losing
It has taken many years to build towards this kind of loss, and the momentum is still swinging rightward and up towards drowning us all in even more of authoritarianism's and of conservatism's ideas:
The Invasion against Democracy: The war is escalating. Right now, financial elites aren’t just fighting a defensive battle against new regulations. They’re playing offense: They’re whipping up deficit hysteria around the globe and calling for drastic cuts in middle class programs. Why? They want to ensure that their loans to governments aren’t threatened by rising public debt. Ironically, the public debt they’re so worried about was created in large part by them — the result of huge bailouts and other expenses stemming from the crash they caused. Although the bankers want us to dismantle what remains of our worker-oriented policies, welfare for the financial elites is still fine and dandy.
LesLeopold at Alternet makes more than a few salient points in the piece titled "Is there a Global War between Financial Theocracy and Democracy?"
I have said before that I would like nothing more than to lay the blame for all of this on the Republican party BUT...
It would likely leave us stuck in a bankrupt state financially, and unable to provide some of the most basic products we need for the American people to eat, live and survive. Never mind being even able to defend ourselves militarily.
This issue is really that big and that important. And I am not sure that the American government even knows what to do regardless of whether they are in a position to do anything about it anymore.
Given the actions of our own three branches of government; the Executive (President), the Legislative (Senate and House of Representatives) and Judicial (Supreme Court and lower Courts) over the last four or five decades, we know that Corporations have a stranglehold on our government and have only strengthened their grasp.
In a way, these Corporations have become super-human behemoths in their rights, while slowly and completely taking over the executive and legislative branches and they have controlled them so long that they have ensured the slow takeover of our judiciary through corporate friendly judges being appointed without regard to the real people - Just look at the recent and ludicrous "Citizens vs United" to prove that point.
Corporations already have more power than you and I because they have all of the money and all of the politicians in their pockets, and in order to ensure they continue things this way in perpetuity they have managed, over time, to put themselves in a position to acquire more rights than you and I.
I know this is kind of straying from one subject to another... And there are serious issues we need to resolve at home before we will ever be in a position to solve the international ones that affect us, as well.
And the fact remains that Dems have done little to nothing to stop this losing war, among many losing wars:
But the fact is that the Dems are not doing enough to dig us out of the hole right now. We could be doing tons of little things like China is doing to attract manufacturers. Instead? They run in the opposite direction of Single Payer (and this may very well already turn out to be the last nail in our economic coffin regardless of anything else) They aren't fixing the tax system that has been purposefully dismantled for the last 30 years in order to kill good government.
You want to take over this nation? All it takes is about 3000 lobbyists and about a billion bucks to buy your own Congress:
By a vote of 59-39, the Senate passed its financial regulatory reform bill yesterday. Four Republicans — Sens. Brown (MA), Grassley (IA), Collins (ME), and Snowe (ME) — voted for its passage. Two Democrats, Sens. Feingold (WI) and Cantwell (WA), voted against, saying the bill wasn’t tough enough on Wall Street.
New analysis by the Center for Public Integrity finds that “850 businesses, trade groups and other corporate interests have hired more than 3,000 lobbyists” to shape Congress’s financial regulatory reform bill. These companies and groups spent $1.3 billion through 2009 and the first quarter of 2010 to influence Congress.
Corporations and their elite owners are winning.
In fact... Much of what they have been trying to sell you as "Big Wins For The Little Guy" is just more CORPORATE WELFARE for already failed corporations. If they were capable of succeeding in a real free market nearly every household would have already had healthcare. They were failing, and failing at a time when all of the financial industries across the board all desperately needed an endless stream of our cash to keep their failed Corporatocracy afloat.
They call it healthcare reform but all I see is another means of shoveling our government money into the endless abyss of free market failures.
Back to the begining of the Alternat Piece:
Senate and House conferees are about to reconcile a financial reform bill that is virtually designed to institutionalize “too big to fail.” And when they do we’ll lose another battle in the ongoing war between global financial markets and democratic nation-states.
This war has been going on for decades — but democracy hasn’t always been in full retreat.
The New Deal Conquest: During the Great Depression democratic forces gained the upper hand in the war. We realized that financial markets, which are driven by the largest banks and financiers, had to be tightly controlled. We knew that global speculation on currencies only deepened the Depression and had to be strictly limited. We knew that an iron curtain was needed between commercial and investment banking to protect Main Street depositors from market madness (that was the Glass-Steagall Act). And most importantly we knew that the key to preventing economic upheaval was to limit the wealth of the super-rich and to increase the wealth of working people through progressive taxes, Social Security, wage and hour laws, and the promotion of unionization. The Bretton Woods agreements forged by the Allies during WWII set up strict rules for global finance, rules that kept financiers in check for more than a quarter century.
And it worked pretty damn well. As economist Joseph Stiglitz points out, this era saw only one financial crisis (Brazil, 1964), and working people in western democracies made huge gains. Since the era of deregulation took hold in the late 1970s, the world has suffered over a hundred financial crises and middle-class incomes have stagnated.
Really and honestly, all I can see is, instead of just institutionalized "Too Big To Fail", institutionalized Kleptocracy continuing on until there is nothing left for them to steal. And in this political climate, one where the 3 Branches of Corporatism still reigns supreme and no matter which branch we try to bark up there will always be a corporate crony to cut us off at the base, and at this point in time there is absolutely nothing we can do about it.
But what can you expect when we have a current government that is still so out of our own control that we can not even get them to look at locking up the previous criminals for their generational theft, for their treason, for their crimes against humanity and for their rush to flush both the nation and Constitution?
And while others can keep looking forward pretending that we are suddenly going somewhere good...
I will continue to look back at what got us where we are now and until something is actually done that will fix the real problems that are still ahead of us, ready to soak us in the rinse and repeat cycle of this pretend free market.
Ed. Note: Yes, you can call me cynical...Though, I'd prefer to consider it being realistically cynical given the circumstances. Et tu?