For those in the international readership here, pardon me while I rant, or better put, vent once again about Amairicunn politics.
As most of you know I don’t like talking about Amairicunn politics, at least, not if it means I have to talk about the Nancy “let’s-vote-on-it-in-the-middle-of-the-night-in-closed-session-to-find-out-what’s-in-it”-Pelosi-corporate socialists in the Dummycrook Party, or the George H.W. “let’s-call-it-’substantial-equivalence’-so-if-it-looks-like-corn-and-tastes-like-corn-it’s-corn-but-we-can-still-patent-it-and-don’t-have-to-do-much-scientific-testing-of-it” Bush-crooks-and-crony-corporate-socialist-crapitalists in the Republithug Party on the other. I think I’m fairly justified in having such harsh estimations of the twin horrors of Democrats and Republicans, because I used to be the latter, and was raised by two members of the former (well, they were anyway, at least until LBJ cured them of their acute Dummycrookery, just as the Thistle family cured me of chronic Republithuggery. Nor is my mention of LBJ or the Thistle family accidental, for both epitomize the corruption of the American system, and did much to further and systematize it).
Frankly, I am fed up with the ideologues of both parties. The Dummycrook party is socialist in spite of the reassuring words of its policy wonks and spokesmen, and are, and have always been, the party for Big Government’s ability to interfere with every aspect of life via regulation, “social programs” and a federal code that no human being can possibly ever know, and to do so with a nauseatingly hypocritical appeal to “compassion” and being “the party of the people” Yea. Right. That’s why you have so many millionaires and billionaires like George Soros and Warren Buffet supporting you. Hope and change. Trust me, you are as transparent as you claim to be, but not in quite the way I think you meant. I get it.
And the Republithugs?
The Republithugs are and have always been, in spite of their reassuring words, the party of unfettered corporate power(they call it “the free market” and “capitalism”, when it little resembles the former and their mercantilist version of the latter would make a Rothschild blush with embarrassment and moral indignation), an example of which we may see in the whole GMO fiasco, and the principle of “substantial equivalence.” And similarly, I am fed up with “free market ideologues” too. If the laissez fare quasi-Randian attitude coming out of certain circles of the Republithug party had their way, we’d still have that form of slavery known as child labor, and Mr. Ford could have made his Model Ts using children on the assembly lines. And that’s no joke either, folks… there’s a reason major corporations are and for “free markets,” where they can export their manufacturing plants overseas and exploit “cheap labor”… but you get the picture I suspect.
And that’s my point; the extremists in both parties have taken over in the name of their favored dogmas of economics, from Keynesianism to the “Austrian school,” and that is why their stock is at an all time low. Thus, to the Chris Matthewses and Sean Hannities and Lanny Davises and Juan Williamses and Rush Limbaughs and Oprah Winfreys and Barbara Walterses: you’re talking to a dwindling audience and increasingly defending the indefensible records of your parties…
In fact, according to a recent Gallup Poll taken last December, the confidence in the institutions of government is not only low, it is breathtakingly low, indeed, almost alarmingly so, for almost 72% say that the government is the biggest threat. That’s almost three fourths of the voting population folks. That’s enormously significant:
This comes at a time that political identification among Americans who label themselves as “independent” is at another high as well. In other words, the Republithug party is not gaining any windfalls from a position that would normally have been associated with “conservatism.” It’s not that American independents, Republicans, or middle-of-the-road Democrats have really changed their views. It’s rather that the party machineries of both political parties have proven, time and again, that their rhetoric and promises are simply no longer trusted.
None of this, of course, appears to have registered with the party hacks and powers that be, as Billary Clinton appears ready to make a run for a first/third term, and it has been reported that feelers have already been made by a certain member of the Thistle family to have his own go, so, it’s business as usual for Dummycrooks and Republithugs.
Just how deep seated the cynicism runs, however, may be gauged by the recent retirement of well-known Republican pollster Frank Luntz, who after the last (s)election cycle, entered a state of reassessment of his own approach to polling and politics. Seen and heard often on various American television and radio talk shows, Mr. Luntz – whom this author was actually acquainted with at the University of Oxford – came to the conclusion that in spite of being good at what he did in his focus groups, and in the way he understood the political uses of language, he just was not good enough.
But I suggest Mr. Luntz not be too hard on himself, and I suggest the Gallup numbers show why, for even though it is clear that most of these numbers are driven by Republithugs and Independents, the fact that 56% of Dummycrooks are thinking the same thing – in the party of FDR, Truman, LBJ, George McGovern and Obama Health Insurance Company Care – is to my mind highly significant. It is those numbers, more than the Republithug or Independent showing, that indicates that something profound is happening in the population and electorate. So Mr. Luntz should not be too hard on himself: America is in a deep state of crisis, but this is not the usual crisis being manufactured for the moment and by political means. It is a cultural and spiritual problem; nothing has changed, really, politically. What has changed is rather the perception of the system and the two monopoly political parties themselves, parties that basically are organized conspiracies or shills for various corporate interests. The system and its inherent corruptions, which became endemic during and after World War Two for a variety of reasons (most having to do with the national security state) are now manifest. No amount of rhetoric or terminological adjustment can successfully address this growing perception, because the perception isn’t just about Halliburton, or Dick Cheney, or neo-con 9/11 truthers, or Clinton era Whitewater and Mena scandals, or BCCI or Iran-Contra or Bobby Baker or George Soros or Goldman Sachs or the Federal Reserve Act, or about a runaway derivatives market or mortgage fraud or robo-signing of mortgages in big “too big to fail too corrupt to jail” banks or banksters, or about too many military bases or too many wars and interventions, it isn’t about the influence of lobbyists or political action committees or radical leftists like Saul Alinsky or radical rightists like David Duke, or Dr. Emmanuel or the conservative Heritage Foundation Think tank plan for “health” care and its suspicious resemblance to Obama Health Insurance Company Care, or the use of the IRS or FBI “Cointellpro” to target Tea Partiers or Martin Luther King, or about gun running to Mexican drug lords and “immigration reform” or bringing drugs back in body bags from Vietnam or Watergate or money still flowing into CREEP(the Committee to RE-Elect the President) long after Nixon was re-elected for a second term or GATT or NAFTA or goofery Club of Rome or Bilderberg globalists and their secret meetings, or the security cameras on every stoplight in every city, or out of control police tasering the homeless and shooting mentally ill teenagers in front of their parents, or the Council of Ten…er… pardon me, the National Security Council claiming to have the power to round up and hold without warrant or any due process an American citizen whom the Star Chamb… er… the Council of Te… er… the National Security Council deems secretly to be a threat to oligarchical…er… national security…
… it’s about all of it.
And that’s a good thing.
It’s a good thing because it means people are waking up as never before. And in the long term, it’s not going to go away or be mollified by increasingly transparent and meaningless rhetoric of “transparency” or “hope and change” or “a thousand points of light” or even Contracts on America and pledges to “reduce the size of government” on the basis of “conservative principles,” pledges that never materialize. It’s not going go away through focus groups or adjustments of terminology. The cynicism is substantive. It’s a good thing, because it means people are recovering that most essential human component for informed action, be that action spiritual, cultural, or political(and political action always depends on the first two, and not vice versa). That most essential component is memory. I am bold to suggest that what the Gallup poll shows is that voters in both political parties and in the “independent center” are waking up, and holding the parties and their candidates responsible for their records.
Don’t get me wrong. Most of the people polled in the Gallup poll will trudge off to the (“rig-able”) computer ballot boxes and cast their votes in classical American style for “the lesser of two evils.” (Now stop and think about that for a moment in the light of the track record of both parties, one party which demonizes individual rights and responsibilities [and God help you if you acquire some wealth or stand up for the second amendment!], and the other party which demonizes you for being poor, or needing food stamps, or being homeless or unemployed, the same party which has helped lead the charge – remember George Guilder? – to ship those jobs overseas in the name of free markets.).
I suggest that this Gallup Poll means something else: the first organized opposition that can stake a claim to represent that growing spike represented by the Gallup pool, and that can state that claim in clear, consistent principled fashion, and that will push and act on those principles politically as a part of long term discipline will be the death knell for one or the other of the two parties. In the meantime, the two political parties that form the American political cartel are increasingly caught in a money-public relations spiral of their own making, having to spend increasing amounts of money on ever more elaborate advertising schemes to convince an increasingly cynical and rightly mistrustful electorate that their party, and its candidates, offer a real choice and opportunity for change, a perception that is increasingly difficult to elaborate and sustain, for the long record of both says otherwise. If the trend continues, sooner or later the day will come that they’ll hold an “election,” and no one will turn out to vote for one of two choices that the corrupt system presents to them, and the system will stand exposed for what it really is: nothing but an oligarchy and plutocracy wrapped in the outward formalities of a republic.
Once again, I vote “no confidence” to both houses and to all their candidates, at all levels of government, local, state, and federal. Is that guilt by association? You betcha! And I’ll bet that the real meaning of the Gallup poll is that perhaps a growing number of people are seeing and thinking the same or similar things. In this, I suspect the Gallup poll, like all polls, is misreading the signals. To put it simply: the two political parties are different in form but consubstantial in essence, and hence, rhetoric alone divides them(in that respect, consider the last charade of a presidential (s)election where, in a nation debating Obamacare, the choice was between two candidates whose views on that issue were substantially the same, leaving only rhetoric to divide them.) They are both subservient to oligarchical interests. The first organization that can articulate the substance of that political center, wins the long term political power in this country.
See you on the flip side…