Thursday, March 01, 2007

The King of America

America, in many ways, is unique and increasingly separate from the rest of the world. Perhaps its political climate separates America from the rest of the world more than anything else. And more than anywhere else, its policies are dictated by a monarch rather than by elected representatives.

If we consider the differences between the Democrats and the Republicans, we can see that their differences are only superficial. One is well to the right within the context of world politics; the other, further to the right. If this was the case with any other nation, we may be forgiven if we ignored it. But this is America. The modern day version of the Roman or British Empires. They are Rome and Britain within a context of latter day capitalism, or, imperialism. It is capitalism addicted to crack. It is extremely dangerous and it aims to exploit the rest of us.

Not so long ago, America had a left consciousness. But today, even leftists in America seem to reflect an insular and arrogant world view. I recently read an article posted on usenet (Neil Kennedy) reflecting on "the religion" that is modern America. And when we think about it, it is a religion. It is a religion of greed, war, hedonism and selfishness that is a direct refutation of Christianity, Islam, Judaism, Buddhism and all other religions. It espouses the goodness in all those things Jesus preached against. And Ironically, it is the religious Christian zealots that are a vital driving force within the cult of America.

Potent Potential

The strain that is building between America and its colonies is growing and correspondingly and naturally, the strain between the classes in America grows. The latter is more latent then manifest due to the artificial dumbing down of the American population by the mainstream media, popular culture, and religious patriotism. On the one hand, we have a pull in the direction of increased profits for those with power and wealth. On the other hand, we have a growing awareness that this is unacceptable, especially in light of the fact that this addiction to wealth and power grows ever more hungry and prominent. People all over the world are becoming more intolerant of injustice and oppression and more aware of the nature of the addicts and addictions that have control of most societies. The trick is, connecting Americans class-wise to the rest of us. That will require them, naturally, to question their patriotism. And it will require he rest of us to befriend them.

A strong progressive political movement rests there, just beneath the surface. We need solidarity with the workers, the poor, and all the oppressed people in the USA. While that may seem far fetched while Jerry Springer and trash magazines enjoy their heyday, we must remember that there is a lot of tension within American society as a result of its homogeneous religious patriotism. The potential for revolution exists in America like nowhere else. It is a powder-keg. If you can remember the contrast between 1966 and 1967 in America, you will know that this is a nation where the climate can change very abruptly. What is needed is deprogramming from the indoctrination that has hypnotized them.

Progressive politics in the United States have been pushed to the margins to the point of irrelevance as the ruling class has increased its dominance over the will and the minds of the people. But latent energy is there as latent and dormant as it may be. Prior to 9-11 young people were collectively resisting global capitalism on the ground. For the first time since the 1930s, there was a significant movement against capitalism itself. The 60's also exposed a wealth of popular resistance against numerous specific issues of oppression. It will happen again and when it does, we, that is, non Americans, must be ready to exploit this energy and help them drive a dagger into the heart of the beast.

Contential Drift

In the 1930s the pain of starvation and oppression gave rise to a popular mass movement against capitalism.That class struggle was co opted by Roosevelt, who granted workers a law that made it illegal for employers to refuse to bargain with unions (the Wagner Act) and he passed the Social Security Act. Doing so placed the USA under the slippery dealings orchestrated by John Maynard Keynes. In other words - 'give the peasants scraps and crumbs or they will revolt'. It was a great pressure relief valve. A pressure relief valve that many European nations have apparently taken on as a permanent fixture. But the nature of capitalism is to plug up or remove altogether that pressure relief and it will tend toward a more fascistic modus operandi as capitalism becomes ever more mature and starved for capital.

The New Deal was not an appeasement brought on by the unions or working class movements. Instead, it was the capitalists themselves that dictated Roosevelt's benevolence. Historians Joel Roberts and Thomas Ferguson observed:

"At the center of [the New Deal Coalition] were not millions of farmers, Blacks and poor that have preoccupied liberal commentators, nor even the masses of employed or striking workers who pressured the government from below (and later helped implement some of the New Deal’s achievements) but something else—a new power bloc of capital-intensive industries, investment banks, and internationally oriented commercial banks." - Thomas Ferguson and Joel Rogers, Right Turn: The Decline of the Democrats and the Future of American Politics

The next four decades would see increased prosperity in the USA and throughout the industrialised world. The Fabian formula: the more the working classes have to spend, the more they will buy, proved to be a powerful impetus for liberalism and Fabian socialism. But the beast was growing large, hungry, and powerful. By the 1980's it became obvious that the party was over. The cry in the USA and in all modern capitalist nations was 'tighten your belts, we can't afford health care, social services, and opulent education for the masses'. The spending spree is over. The neo-liberalism of the Chicago School of was to take centre stage. And it did. It especially took centre stage in Latin America and as a result, the blowback is already being felt. The hypnosis of the neon lights of capitalism has turned to a nightmare, as it did in Argentina:

Grand Theft Argentina

Introducing: The King of America

America is ruled less by politics and more by economics. Whether democrats or the GOP are in power doesn't matter. The face of the President may change, but the King is always the same. And it is the King of America that calls the shots.

As a result of the maturation of capitalism, the dictator of American politics turned away from the slick wisdom of Keynes in the mid-seventies. That is, capital was becoming increasingly difficult to accumulate and there was a decline in profit taking. The sense that things will keep getting better was lost in the boardrooms and a bitter new deal would have to be forged. The expectation that prosperity would continue would have to give way to a newer and meaner future. Since that time, real wages have fallen steadily.

Welfare to citizens would have to be cut and so would corporate welfare. The arrangement where employers were subsidized for paying wages had to give way. Since then, unions cozy relationship with employers was poisoned and unions have been under siege ever since.

Fiscally, Jimmy Carter was more right wing than his Republican predecessors and Bill Clinton was more right wing than his. That is because it is not the president, but the King in American that calls the shots. Clinton ratified the NAFTA, a move that has neo-liberalized policy not only in the USA, but in Canada as well. NAFTA was aimed at radically altering the terms of exploitation that the monarch demanded of Roosevelt five decades prior. Clinton also forced welfare reliant parents to work for wages by passing regressive bills aimed at curbing welfare expenditures.

The King of America, or perhaps better, the dictator, has no problem with military expenditures. The sky's the limit. And his right minions march in step, hypocritically screaming bloody murder when five dollars is paid out to poor people but happy as a clam when many billions are paid out to the military machine to slaughter foreigners for control of oil.

And the next President, a Democrat, will continue to slaughter those unfortunate enough to be born on a sea of oil whether she wants to or not.

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