Friday, November 3, 2017

It’s The Pro-Establishment Liberals Who Are Naive

The Democratic Party, put into exile by its own hubris, is an avenue besieged elites have occupied in the decline of the American empire. Liberal elites in post-economic collapse Weimar invested in enclaves like the Centre Party, which destroyed itself and German democracy in 1933 when it voted to enable Hitler’s dictatorial powers. As Rome collapsed, the ruling patricians clung to their position till “patrician” was diminished to a meaningless honorary title. Democrats have the same role.

Like past facades of crumbling democracies, the Democrats and the intellectual class they represent lose their ability to relate to most people at a certain point. They blandly repeat the propaganda of a detached ruling class. They promote personalities and brands instead of addressing the concerns of a suffering population. They dismiss all calls for genuine change. Even as the republic self-destructs as a result of these behaviors, like America is now doing, they remain paralyzed and in denial about the system’s flaws.
The recent admission from former DNC insider Donna Brazille that Hillary Clinton bribed the Democratic Party a year before 2016 to secure her nomination reveals just another small part of our society’s transition into despotism. Clinton, as a young lawyer working in the Watergate investigation, drew Richard Nixon’s experiences with rationalizing corruption, being politically secretive, and trying to hold onto power at all costs into an outline for her own career. Roger Stone, a close Trump confidante and a professed enemy of the Clintons’ brand, has similar origins, having risen as a political strategist with Nixon’s help and taken Nixon’s tactics as a moral example.
In the years after Clinton and Stone’s adventures with Nixon, they and other, similar figures worked to transform America into an oligarchy. Stone introduced Political Action Committees into the campaign system, allowing corporate interests a loophole to buy off virtually every politician in both major parties. As an advisor to Ronald Reagan and chair of the Young Republicans Caucus, Stone normalized lies, racial and religious scapegoating, and vapid political gossip within Republican politics. The Clintons added onto this by expanding Nixon’s War on Drugs and the mass incarceration state, deregulating Wall Street, prisons and the media companies, and corrupting the Democratic Party with a Koch-funded, Dixiecrat-lead private group called the Democratic Leadership Council.
Stone and the Clintons have both had careers marred in scandal and corruption, giving them and the other arbiters of our republic’s decline an appropriate persona. Since the 1970’s, austerity, stagnant wages, globalization, and a shift of the tax burden onto the poor have driven the majority of Americans under the poverty line while 0.1% of the population has as much wealth as much wealth as the bottom 90%. Unions have been devastated, along with the social movements of the 60’s and 70’s. A bloated security state universally surveils Americans’ private communications, patrols poor and black communities with militarized police, and holds more prisoners than there are in China or North Korea. The CIA’s regime change projects have grown more blatant in recent decades as the U.S. escalates its global bombing and drone campaigns to enrich the military industrial complex.
As neoliberalism and imperialism have lost legitimacy in the minds of Americans, so, as polls and elections show, have both major parties. It was Democrats who perpetuated neoliberal trade and the dismantling of the welfare state in the 90’s. It was all but one senate Democrat who voted for the Patriot Act in 2001, which enabled the state to spy on Americans in violation of the First Amendment. It was Democrats who helped start Bush’s wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, and who’vecontinued those wars while starting five new ones during Obama’s term. It was Democrats who used drones to kill several American citizens without trial, including a sixteen-year-old boy named Abdulrahman al Awlaki who’d never given any indication of being a threat.
It was Democrats who voted to let Wall Street loot the treasury, and who then imposed austerity through cuts to food stamps and attempted cuts to social security and Medicare. It was a Democratic administration that first colluded with the big banks to install Wall Street executives into White House posts. A Democratic administration has invoked the Espionage Act more than with all previous administrations combined to persecute whistleblowers. And it’s been the Democrats, as documented by Election Justice USA, who suppressed or flipped millions of votes in their party’s primary last year, destroying democracy and depriving us of a Bernie Sanders presidency. It’s not the Democratic Party’s radical critics who are naive. It’s those who defend and deny the Democratic Party’s crimes.
The power structure will be thrown down by those who don’t make concessions to fascists, who will always fight cruelty and injustice, and who never lose their sense of compassion. Who take the example of Eugene Debs’ words: “While there is a lower class, I am in it, while there is a criminal element, I am of it, and while there is a soul in prison, I am not free.” When Debs was jailed on ten accounts of sedition for speaking against America’s imperialist involvement in World War I, he gave a testimony that unapologetically explained his opposing the capitalist system, then ran for president from his jail cell. 
Dissidents today are starting to get similar penalties. The intelligence agencies and online companies, long colluding with each other, are increasingly censoringdisfavored websites and journalists. The zealously pro-corporate FCC will vote this month to revoke the Title II net neutrality rules, destroying an open Internet. The agency for silencing dissent put in last year through the Countering Disinformation and Propaganda Act quietly erodes free discourse. A former FBI agent has now testified to the senate that tech companies must “silence” voices of “rebellion.” We need to respond the same way Debs did.

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