mardi 1 février 2011

When do we start demonstrating for real democracy here?

This is what democracy looks like

Randi Rhodes had an interesting phone call yesterday, from a woman who started out asking why "we" let it get so bad in Egypt, and then under pressure from Randi, decided that what she wants is "a good election", by which she clearly meant 'ZOMG NO MUSLIMS!!" It was so painfully obvious, and yet this woman insisted in couching the fear that the Talking Heads of Television have been whipping up into concern trolling about elections.

When you take out of the equation this business about how the U.S. has a right to demand that someone we like lead Egypt because Israel needs it this way, the only conclusion you can come to is that people in Egypt have had enough of a government that only represents he oligarchs and the moneyed and have discovered that there really IS people power when there is common cause. Egypt differs from the U.S. in that here, Fox News has managed to convince a smallish but vocal group of people that giving more power to corporations, and allowing corporations to buy politicians in the government, and to have government be for sale, is a GOOD thing. Remember, this is a country where guys who have seen their jobs disappear are sending death threats to a 78-year-old academic who only "crime" is telling them to organize. That's the power of media in the United States.

So here we are with a two-party system that consists of a party of gutless whores and a party of batshit crazy lunatics. We have a car thief and possible arsonist collecting dossiers on anyone who questions the government, presumably so he can both monitor the American citizenry AND the Democratic (presumably only Democratic) administration they might petition. We have a Republican Congress whose first priority is redefining rape. And then we have so-called "Democrats" like Stephen Lynch, who thinks that conservodems like himself are the future and the rest of us should shut the hell up and get with the program:
Liberal groups need to stay out of Democratic primaries if the party is going to retake the House majority, according to a conservative Massachusetts Democrat.

Rep. Stephen Lynch was one of several Democrats who faced an aggressive primary challenge from the left in 2010. His challenger Mac D'Alessandro, a former top official with the Service Employees International Union (SEIU), received almost $300,000 from labor groups for his campaign.


Clearing primaries for members and discouraging liberal groups from spending against incumbents should be a priority for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, he said. “It would definitely help, I think. You need to talk to those groups.”


And having money-grubbing politicians tell us to go away, to shut up, to not have a right to air OUR grievances differs from a despotic government, how? Don't talk to me about dictators and how this is just a Congressman and how we can still vote for other candidates in primaries. The minute party politics, whether Democrat or Republican, trumps the right of the citizens to gather peacably in the form of grassroots campaigns for election challengers, and when the party makes the rules and controls the money, we HAVE lost democracy.

The teabaggers have one advantage that the progressive side of the fence does not -- a corporate media and corporate astroturfers plowing money into their efforts. This works as long as the teabaggers continue to put their energies into defense of the corporate state under the false doctrine of Rich People Create Jobs® On our side of the fence, we have blogs and what's left of MSNBC in the evening (where ratings have fallen since the Olbermann sacking, largely because MSNBC alienated much of its audience with this move...probably deliberately, so they can return to the golden age of Savage Nation and Alan Keyes is Making Sense). The teabaggers are dancing to the tune of their corporate masters. The left is still cats resisting being herded. And the party that's supposed to be a counterbalance to the likes of John Boehner being the guest of honor at insurance company dinners and passing out checks on the House floor is telling us to suck it up and stick with the status quo.

We ought to be taking a really good, close look at Egypt. Because what's going on there is what happens when people get their act together and realize that it is their own government that's working against them.

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