Saturday, October 28, 2006

What If We Dodge The Bullet?

Posted by olvlzl

What if they lose? What if the congress investigates the crimes of the Bush regime and those are stopped? What if things go back to normal?

After what we've seen in the past six years, if things can go back to normal it won't be a blessed relief, it will be a disaster. Our recent history proves that we have fatal problems in the foundation of the American government.

Our elections have to be fixed, not just returned to c. 1964. We have to secure the vote, from before it is cast, to counting it, to reporting the results and to their fulfillment. No elections official, secretary of state, or judge can ever be allowed to prevent another legal ballot being cast or counted or made to count. The sleazy behavior we've seen from every level from elections clerk to Supreme Court and the Executive wouldn't be tolerated in a real democracy. A democracy needs it to be an impeachable crime for a Supreme Court Justice to say that a Citizen of the United States does not have a right to vote. That is a fundamental contradiction of the role of the court in a democracy. Anyone who believes that has no place on our court or in our government.

The media, and today that means the electronic media, have to have their self-interested bias exposed and it's pollution scrubbed out of our politics. They have to be forced to perform the public service they promised, including standards of fairness. Broadcast stations must provide real news, including local news, which has to be unbiased and fair. And without diverse ownership of the media, they won't serve the entire public. Women and minority groups have to control parts of the electronic media.

The cable "news" channels have betrayed the public trust even more flagrantly than broadcast, spreading lies effective enough to start the most idiotic and dangerous war of our history. We will pay the cost of their lies for decades, in blood as well as in money.

They also aided the Bush putsch of 2000 and the earlier scheme to remove a genuinely elected President on trumped up charges and lies. Pretending that a rogue cable industry isn't a danger to freedom has to stop. Anyone who defends them on their crimes against democracy is a dupe or a profiteer. Put them under the same public service requirements as broadcast media. Media passes itself off as the voice of the people, then let them show it by putting the public before their investors and owners.

Recent history proves that self-government can't depend on leaving it to chance. Laissez faire democracy dies and the death is never a natural one. It lets the powerful and wealthy swamp the Peoples's voice almost all of the time. The Supreme Court rulings making corporations artificial people made that all the more true

Our government is always presented as being those who hold office , that is where almost all of the pitiful efforts at reform are concentrated. And that hasn't worked. We have the most dishonest government of our lifetimes. Putting patches on the process to make it a level field is unrealistic to the level of willful blindness. Powerful interests have power. They will always win when they have equal access to the process and own the media. The handful of examples where individuals or small groups win over the big guy make for sentimental TV movies, using them as proof that the system works is calculated dishonesty.

If the People are neglected then it all goes wrong. They won't even show up to vote. That step isn't a naive social studies lesson that you stop thinking about after the test in fourth grade. You don't go on to the higher study of civics and leave it behind. There is nothing higher in a democracy than the People, there is no act of government more important than their Vote. Abraham Lincoln, one of the real founders of the country we live in today, gave the formula for it. You know it by heart. He didn't mention the congress, the executive or the high church of the judiciary. He said that the enormous sacrifice of the American People in the Civil War was so that government of the People, by the People, and for the People shall not perish from the earth.

Any aftermath of the Bush II disaster that doesn't include changes to these laws will be just the beginning of the next time. Not securing the Vote, the will of the People; and forcing their own chosen responsibilities on the media, the only guarantee of an informed and realistic Vote, is a welcome mat for the next would-be dictator. Any liberal, leftist, Democrat, independent, even "moderate" Republican who lets two years go by without enacting real electoral and media reform had better beware. It's just a matter of waiting before the same coalition of corporate interests, bigots, oligarches and haters tries again. They might be as slow and stealthy as they were this time, buying up media, using it to spread lies that "more speech" can't drown out. And they'll make their come back having learned from the mistakes they made this time. Like the aristocratic conspirators in ancient Athens, they will be more dangerous than ever.

Along with these two absolute prerequisites to securing democracy there is the necessity for a full and public appraisal of the thefts and other crimes of the Bush II and previous presidencies. There has to be a full program of congressional hearings, done in public, of what has happened. They have to be congressional hearings because that is their responsibility. A commission or blue ribbon panel or other kind of establishment dodge won’t do it. Those are mechanisms for obscuring and stalling. This is a job for those appointed by The People. They asked for the responsibility, no one forced them to run.

There will be a chorus of media and politicians and the Republican talking points network telling us to “get over it”. They are the PR voice of the criminals. We have to be prepared to force these reforms over their constant lies and slogans.

Just going along as we have been is a guarantee that the disasters will continue. We will have to push the next Democratic congress to work simultaneously on all these issues while taking up new business. They are not extras they are the only way we are going to find out how to go forward, to make progress instead of making the same mistakes we have made before.

If the Republican who have created this disaster win a majority next week, the problems will not disappear they will certainly get worse. Giving up before those problems are fixed securely is not an option for us.