Editor’s Note: This is one of the
most important articles you will read at this site. We are a non
profit and we cannot post our political favorites, but we can talk
about politics. The health of our nation is tied up in the health
of our politics and, basically, we are a very sick nation. This
article should really be called, “Why I Hate Partisan Politics,” and
the simple answer is: Look where it’s gotten us. Nothing’s getting
done. The rich get richer. The poor get poorer. And we’re all
responsible for this because we’re at each other’s throats fighting
over silly issues.
We are a site dedicated to health and
wellness, and our poor country, as of December 2015, is neither
healthy nor well.
The purpose of democracy is to protect the masses from the
rich and powerful.
Obviously, if that is true, then America is no longer a
democracy. There are some recent studies showing that we’ve become
Plutocracy ― a government by
government by a small group of people
government by corporate interests
A Democracy is a government of the people, by the people, and for
the people. A representative democracy is one in which we vote for
people who represent “our” wishes, desires, and demands. A
Democratic Republic is, according to
dictionary.com: a state in
which the supreme power rests in the body of citizens entitled to
vote and is exercised by representatives chosen directly or
indirectly by them. [http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/republic?s=t]
In a Republic, there is an unwritten rule that the Majority may
not damage, destroy, or injure the minority. Or to put it a nicer
way, “the individual is protected from the Majority.”
Nobody voted for this situation we are currently in,
specifically, but it came about because of partisan politics.
According to Wikipedia, Amitai Etzioni is a sociologist, best
known for his work on socioeconomics
and communitarianism. He
lectures all over the world and one of his lectures goes like this.
In the Middle Ages, there were cities, towns, villages, and
countrysides. There was also the “marketplace.” Everyone knew that
they had to be careful in the marketplace; there were thieves,
pickpockets, and murderers. It was a place of deceit. Sure, you
could buy a lamp and oil for your home, but you’d probably pay more
than if you had built your own. People went to the marketplace to
purchase things they needed, but they went with care, usually
surrounding themselves with friends and family to watch over them.
For the most part, people traded among themselves for food,
clothing, and tools, but if something was needed that bartering
couldn’t get, well, they had to go to the market.
Then came the growth of “market towns.” People started living
nearer and nearer the market, until towns grew up around the market;
the market being the city center, as it were.
Today, the market has invaded our lives. It’s all over the
internet. The internet is like a restroom wall (people write
anything they want) with advertising. You cannot visit a site (even
ours) where there is no advertising. On some sites it’s more
blatant, more in your face, but sites have to survive so they post
advertising. Then there are the sites that thrive off of
advertising, like those sites posting: Ten Ways To Make Her Love You
More, or Celebrities Whose Plastic Surgery Went Wrong, or Actresses
Who Modeled Nude Before They Became Famous. These sites spread their
pages out so you have to click and click and click to get to the
next and the next; all filled with tons of advertising (and many
more pages you can visit). Some people make hundreds of thousands of
dollars from these sites.
The market has invaded our lives. It’s on TV, it’s in our
schools, and most frighteningly, it has invaded out government.
Businesses employ lobbyists to make the laws that keep the
business owners rich and powerful.
The system is rigged.
Are There Real Differences Between Parties?
Political parties bend, change, and evolve. The Republican party
was once liberal and the Democratic party was once conservative.
What doesn’t change are the philosophies and ideologies of the party
Throughout history there have been two major ideologies in
politics that we can label: Conservative and Liberal.
These two groups are very different, but a human being doesn’t
have to be either one or the other. There are people who are liberal
in their economics but are conservative over, say crime, or
education. There are people conservative in their economics, but
liberal in their social policies.
However, those who tend to lean mostly to one side are quite
different from the opposing stance in their philosophy, approach to
problems, and methods.
What Is a Conservative?
The most basic definition of a conservative is “traditional.”
Conservatives believe in traditional values, traditional attitudes,
and are very cautious about innovation and/or change. Religions are,
typically, conservative. They hold age-old values and have age-old
traditions (many of which, most adherents have long forgotten their
origins). Medicine is conservative in that it balks at change and
innovation. The moneyed are also conservative in that they love
their wealth and power and certainly don’t want anything to change
Conservatives have a very low tolerance to cognitive dissonance.
When hit with information contrary to a belief, it is ignored or
quickly rationalized away.
Conservatives lean toward authority and authoritarian behavior.
They are the original rugged individualists who fight hard for
themselves and their families. They believe in a strong ruler and
laws that are unbending.
Conservatives believe that humans are basically bad and need to
be controlled; need to be kept in line.
Conservatives focus on preventing negative outcomes.
Additionally, conservatives learn better from negative sanctions
(punishment) than from positive sanctions (praise). [Natalie J.
Shook, PhD, and Russell H. Fazio, PhD, "Political Ideology,
Exploration of Novel Stimuli, and Attitude Formation," Experimental
Social Psychology, Apr. 3, 2009]
Conservatives are orderly and organized. When faced with
confrontation or conflict, conservatives fall back on old, well-rooted responses. Conservatives like quick, low effort solutions to
Conservative behaviors, such as anxiety and sensitivity to
threats are evolutionarily responsible for the survival of our
species. Conservatism goes back to the earliest human beings and
have kept our species alive by sheer force. However, studies also
show, that on average, conservatives are not as smart as liberals.
Liberals Are More Intelligent Than Conservatives]
You will find sites that make the exact opposite claim that
conservatives are smarter (for the most part) than liberals, but
these sites exist to keep up tensions between the two ideologies and
keep us separate as a people.
The truth should suffice, but it hardly does. You will find liars
among both conservatives and liberals. When I was growing up, it was
assumed that both sides lied as much as the other, most of the
time; but, it wasn’t a purposeful lie as much as it was
information that was backed by bad data. However, with the advent of
the neo-conservative, a study out of the nonpartisan Center for
Media and Public Affairs at George Mason University showed that
Republicans lie about three times more than Democrats. Again, not
all Republicans are conservative and not all Democrats are liberals.
Conservatives sleep soundly.
One new aspect to conservatives is that they dislike the idea of
a middle class. In the sixties, our middle class was the largest and
strongest middle class in the history of the world. From this
strength came equal rights, the women’s movement, the Black
Panthers, voter’s rights, gay rights, a whole bunch of hippies, and
an anti-war movement.
Now conservatives aren’t entirely against equal rights, they just
believe they must come slower. A strong middle class has lots of
free time and fewer cares; they’ve got good jobs, a nice home, and
two (or more) cars. They’re free to involve themselves in the
One of the Roosevelts said that a “Necessitous man is not a
free man.” If a person hasn’t got a good job, a good education,
health care, and is out fighting the forces of poverty each and
every day, he is not free. He is not free to get involved in
politics or protest a war; he’s too busy trying to keep a roof over
his head and food on the table.
The working poor could care less about elections; they want to
feed their kids. Today, nearly 15 million American children go to
The vanishing middle class is a result of a strong conservative
movement that not all conservatives support (because they happen to
be middle class), but which they are supporting because of their
Take the history of unions.
Unions were created by liberals and fought against by
conservatives. The reason Unions won out was because people were
willing to fight and die and the American people wanted to better
their lives. With unions came better wages, upward mobility, and
Conservatives wanted the profits to remain in the pockets of the
wealthy, and they wanted the public to have a little less security
because people who live in fear tend to vote conservatively. This is
another historical fact.
Unions and good wages spread because people who were not in
unions began saying, “Hey, they’ve got good wages and pensions. We
want good wages and pensions too.” And businesses had to comply to
get the best workers.
Today, because the best jobs have been shipped overseas and
unions are being attacked, the masses are responding differently.
“Hey, they’ve got good pay and pensions and I don’t. I want their
pay and pensions cut.”
Thus the race to the bottom began in the eighties with the
attacks on unions.
Most people do not know the history of the labor movement because
“they” have pulled all references to it from our kids’ text books.
But for some reason we all know a horror story about unions; about
the bosses and the corruption. Why? Because there is a movement to
keep the middle class small and weak, and so we know exactly what
the people in power want us to know, and no more. And now we have a
race to the bottom.
What is a Liberal?
The most basic definition of a liberal person is someone who is
open to new ideas, new behaviors, and new thinking, while abandoning
Liberals believe that humans are basically good.
Liberalism is relatively new in the evolution of humans. As the
world has become more interdependent (we don’t have to rely on our
personal strength to protect our family because the “system”
protects our families) more liberals have been produced.
Liberals are generous and believe there is “enough” to go around.
Liberals accept cognitive dissonance as a way of life and will
change their beliefs to fit the new information. Facts mean
something to liberals, and they acknowledge and can appreciate
nuance. Liberals understand that all facts have contexts too.
Studies show that while liberals don’t react as strongly as
conservatives to “gross/disgusting” images, liberals spend a lot
less time, online, looking at disgusting images. Liberals tend to
look at pleasant images.
Liberals are less anxious about the future and more tolerant to
uncertainty than conservatives.
Liberals, besides being open-minded, are also creative. Faced
with a crisis, liberals are more likely to choose new solutions
given new information, rather than falling back on old solutions that
worked in the past.
Liberals do not sleep soundly, and oftentimes have bizarre and
Further Reading on Liberals/Conservatives:
Editor’s Note: I have tried to find non biased, non-partisan
sites here, or at least sites that point to non-biased studies.
Not all liberals are all that liberal. When President Obama was
running for office, conservatives labeled him “the most liberal” etc
etc etc, and still call him a commie and a socialist. Objective,
thinking people laugh at this, because he was not all that liberal
to begin with. Sure, as a student at Harvard he was very liberal,
but as people grow older, their ideas begin to change. For the most
part, liberals turn more conservative as they age.
Today Obama has made some very centrist choices, from the TPP to
drilling in the Arctic to drone attacks. Even before he ran for the
presidency, he voted against sanctioning and punishing
communications companies that were illegally collecting data and
monitoring people’s telephone calls. In other words, he voted
with the conservatives on this one.
As for Conservatives, many in the Republican party have expressed
concern that their party is no longer what it used to be.
Ben Bernanke, in his memoir, The Courage To Act
Republican Party Left Me"
Conservatives are supposed to be conservationists; well, at least
they started out that way. America’s first major conservationist was
Here is your country. Cherish these natural wonders, cherish the
natural resources, cherish the history and romance as a sacred
heritage, for your children and your children's children. Do not let
selfish men or greedy interests skin your country of its beauty, its
riches or its romance. ~
He created more federal parks than any previous president in
order to preserve this land for our posterity.
To waste, to destroy our natural resources, to skin and exhaust
the land instead of using it so as to increase its usefulness, will
result in undermining in the days of our children the very
prosperity which we ought by right to hand down to them amplified
Today people who call themselves conservatives are
selling off the rights to these lands. Like Bernanke, many feel that
their party is no longer conservative, but has become something
But Theodore Roosevelt was a true conservative and wanted to
conserve our beautiful lands. While he was in office, he signed
legislation that created five new national parks. One of my favorite
quotations of his was when he went to visit the Grand Canyon and
said, “Golly, what a gully!”
Goldwater believed that government should stay out of the
bedroom; that people in the military should shoot straight, not “be”
straight. Conservatives also felt that people who made the most owed
the most back to society. Eisenhower taxed wealth upwards of 90%.
Even Ronald Reagan raised taxes more than he cut them. However, he
did cut them below 50% which disincentivizes business owners to
reinvest in their businesses. Cutting taxes that much is,
historically, not a conservative policy, but has since the eighties
become one of their basic beliefs; that all taxes are theft. This is
a very modern neo-conservative belief.
This type of thing is not traditionally conservative. Theodor
Roosevelt believed that all the people should be prosperous; that
prosperity should be spread out and not centralized in a few
We should not forget that it will be just as important to our
descendants to be prosperous in their time as it is to us to be
prosperous in our time. ~
For years conservatives have continually attacked liberals with
the cry, “Tax & Spend!” However, today people who call themselves
conservatives are spending more than their liberal counterparts ever
Take a look at these figures.
The following figures are from the Office of Management and
Budget, representing how much the national debt rose under different
presidents since Jimmy Carter:
In my lifetime, Conservatives have gone from being fiscally
conservative to being the really big spenders, and their spending
supports a huge military and corporate welfare. We are told we need
this huge military for our security, but that money is a big gift to
the wealthy, and, like Jefferson who wasn’t fond of a standing army,
Eisenhower spoke out against the "military-industrial complex" in his farewell address:
Until the latest of our world conflicts,
the United States had no armaments industry. American makers
of plowshares could, with time and as required, make swords
as well. But we can no longer risk emergency improvisation
of national defense. We have been compelled to create a
permanent armaments industry of vast proportions. Added to
this, three and a half million men and women are directly
engaged in the defense establishment. We annually spend on
military security alone more than the net income of all
United States corporations.
Now this conjunction of an immense
military establishment and a large arms industry is new in
the American experience. The total influence -- economic,
political, even spiritual -- is felt in every city, every
Statehouse, every office of the Federal government. We
recognize the imperative need for this development. Yet, we
must not fail to comprehend its grave implications. Our
toil, resources, and livelihood are all involved. So is the
very structure of our society.
In the councils of government, we must
guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence,
whether sought or unsought, by the military-industrial
complex. The potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced
power exists and will persist. We must never let the weight
of this combination endanger our liberties or democratic
processes. We should take nothing for granted. Only an alert
and knowledgeable citizenry can compel the proper meshing of
the huge industrial and military machinery of defense with
our peaceful methods and goals, so that security and liberty
may prosper together.
In my lifetime, Conservatives have become less conservative, and
more authoritarian and tyrannical. And bigotry is not a traditional
conservative ideology, but many bigots seem to call themselves
This is not the conservatism I grew up with.
Let me illustrate this by giving you Eisenhower’s 1956 platform.
Eisenhower was what many refer to as the last great conservative.
We have citizens who work full time jobs who live in poverty.
This is absolutely contrary to everything America has
stood for since the New Deal.
Yet, there are those who call themselves conservative who tell us
that if you are not rich, it’s your own damn fault. If you are poor,
it’s your own damn fault.
People are not poor because they choose to be poor or because
they don’t work hard. People are poor because their employer doesn’t
pay them a living wage.
A friend of mine, a comedian, once said (and it’s been quoted and
misquoted a million time since): "Rich people pay news people to
convince average people that poor people are the problem."
If you feel the problem with America is all those poor people
getting “free stuff,” then those rich people have spent their money
wisely and they’ve convinced you to go after the wrong people.
When the minimum wage was established, it was intended to be a
“living wage.” It no longer is a living wage. People need society’s
“safety net” just to feed their families, and yet there are people
calling themselves conservatives who want to take away food stamps
and allow people to starve.
And there are people who believe that cutting off food stamps is
good for the economy just like during the last half of the Clinton
administration, congress determined that reforming welfare would
save lots of money and help the economy.
Well, they definitely reformed welfare and Clinton definitely
signed the bill and do you know what happened?
When George W Bush came into office, he inherited a recession.
Liberals everywhere claimed this was a lie.
However, non-partisan economists and the Office of Management and
Budget both came out and said that the recession was real.
It was real and it was caused by our cutting welfare and removing
billions of dollars from circulation.
There are certain laws we’ve established and confirmed in the
past thirty years and they look like this:
Trickle Down Does Not Work; giving money to the wealthy
(corporate welfare) does not stimulate the economy.
Giving money to the poor does stimulate the economy because
they have to spend it to survive.
Giving money to the poor does NOT make them dependent on the
Giving money to the rich (corporate welfare) does make them
dependent on the government.
There will be people who’ve stumbled across this
essay who are right this minute violently disagreeing with the
Here is something I’ve published before and I’ll
gladly publish again:
Economic Activity Generated
High “Bang for the Buck”
Temporarily increase food stamps
Extend unemployment benefits
Provide general aid to state governments
Lower “Bang for the Buck”
Extend Alternative Minimum Tax patch
Make dividend and capital gains tax cuts permanent
Cut corporate tax rate
Make Bush income tax cuts permanent
From testimony by
economist, Mark M. Zandi (from Moody’s Economy dot com)
The simple rule is, welfare (or money to the poor and working
poor) stimulates the economy, while corporate welfare depresses the
But the poor have such crappy lobbyists. And as John Steinbeck,
Nobel Prize winning novelist has said: "Socialism never took root in
America because the poor see themselves not as an exploited
proletariat, but as temporarily embarrassed millionaires."
...and now a word from our sponsors...
So let us all take this in one more time.
A strong economy with a strong middle class was a classical
conservative value; Eisenhower and Teddy Roosevelt were classical
Today, many conservatives I’ve admired are walking away from
their party. There is a new conservative movement, and the term for
it comes from “New Conservative” and is: Neoconservative.
What is most interesting about the left and right is that at the
“extremes,” both are totalitarian. Both want to control everything.
It’s much like the battle between Capitalism and Socialism.
Neither one of these, if put in total control, ends nicely. They
both lead to a huge income inequality gap with a handful of very
rich elite and the masses living in near poverty. They both
distribute income, but upwards. This is one reason non-partisan
economists have recommended a mixture of economic policies are the
healthiest. Even the father of Capitalism, a staunch conservative,
said that Capitalism had to be regulated or, because of greed, the
system would be corrupted, and only a handful would thrive while
others barely survive.
The Battle Between Liberals & Conservatives
Everyone jokes about “the other.” Above, we learned that liberals
are more generous than conservatives, and conservatives joke: “Sure
they are. Generous with other people’s money.”
I get a newspaper called the Funny Times in which Dave Barry
always has a column. While researching the difference between
conservatives and republicans, I went searching for something he
said and found this:
To paraphrase humor columnist Dave
Barry, Republicans think of Democrats as godless,
unpatriotic, Volvo-driving, France-loving, elitist latte
guzzlers, whereas Democrats dismiss Republicans as ignorant,
NASCAR-obsessed, gun-fondling religious fanatics
Humor has, often enough at its foundation, a bit of truth.
Liberals and conservatives are humans and humans are funny.
But funny or not, we are not supposed to be at each other’s
throats. When I came into this world, both sides of the aisles
worked together to solve problems. No matter who got elected, JFK or
Nixon, the first day of congress, both sides rolled up their sleeves
and went to work.
However, there is a false flag operation taking place every day
in America that is killing democracy. It makes the rich richer. It
makes all of us less human, less humane, and even takes food out of
This False Flag is the continual battle between the LEFT and the
RIGHT. This is a false separation, but heavily fortified for the
purpose of bolstering up a ruling class while voters actually think
they are battling for their own self interests.
Most would not call this a False Flag, but let me show you how
this has worked in the past.
When I was in the third grade, I went to a Catholic school. The
cold war was in its infancy and to bolster it, teachers were given
lots of anti-communist propaganda to pass out to influence our
susceptible and malleable minds. One thin, red magazine had such an
horrendous picture on the cover that it is still etched in my mind
to this day 58 years later. The cover was bright red; the communist
hammer and sickle prominent with a large, black and white photograph
of a firing squad in the middle. The picture was taken just a
millisecond after the shots had been fired; the bodies of the
victims writhing in pain, their eyes wide open in terror. The silent
screaming on that page haunted my sleep for weeks. (The irony of
this is that the Catholic Church, the one in which my third grade
nun had lived most of her adult life, was a communist
organization. She did not own the clothing she wore daily or
even the shoes on her feet.)
Communism was something to be feared greatly. It would take away
all our possessions; our homes, our cars; it would make us work
endless hours for meager wages; it would empty our savings; we’d
never have enough to take that vacation or build that dream house.
We’d never be able to climb up the ladder of success. We’d be just a
paycheck away from bankruptcy.
Now please think about the above paragraph. Read it again.
Then consider where we are today. The number of people who’ve
been dispossessed of their homes, their pensions, their cars, their
jobs, who today are working endlessly for meager wages, just a
paycheck away from bankruptcy. Upward mobility is gone. It moved
overseas. No time for a vacation. No dream house. An accident or
injury could destroy us. Today (according to Pew Research) the
average household could not come up with $400.00 if it needed to.
Do you see what has happened?
While we were busy battling the forces of communism, capitalism
took everything we were told communism would take from us.
And it’s not necessarily because we fell asleep. Sure, many of us
did fall asleep, but this was all very carefully planned.
Poverty is not an accident. Under LBJ, the War on Poverty took
poverty levels to the lowest in our history.
Poverty is a blight that
is self-inflicted upon a society.
The Cold War Was a False Flag Operation
It was intended to keep us worried about commies while
capitalists picked our pockets.
And the battle between the Left and the Right is also a false
flag operation. It’s intended to keep the people battling with each
other while a handful of rich (oligarchy) took absolute control of
While left and right are battling it out on Twitter, nobody
notices that the lobbyists are writing our laws.
And when we fight among ourselves we don’t have time to think
about those things we have in common.
Take Citizens United: The law of the land that allows unlimited
funding of elections by corporations (even foreign corporations).
The last poll I saw on Citizens United was that 65% of Americans
wanted that decision reversed (by a number of ways, including an
amendment to the constitution).
That’s a pretty hefty majority in this country. You’ll find
nearly the same numbers in favor of taking all money out of
politics. And this comes from people on both the left and right
sides of the fence.
So you see, the rich and powerful want us to fight each other
rather than get together and take money out of politics.
When you take money out of politics, the rich no
And you won’t hear the media complain about money in politics
because it’s the media that eventually rakes in those billions of
dollars in politics.
How do they do it? How do those with power keep getting the
people to vote against their own self interests? Let’s face it. Most
Americans want health care. And by most, this is well over 80%, yet
the House, which is supposed to represent that 80% keeps pulling up
these crazy, symbolic votes against OBAMACARE that do nothing but
waste our money.
How the hell did these people get elected? How did they ever get
into a position where they can waste our taxes and accomplish
nothing while our jobs are being shipped overseas with the only jobs
left here being low paying jobs?
How did they get our pensions? Did anyone ever vote to have their
pension stripped from them? We’ve voted to have others stripped of
their pensions. Many voted for Gov Walker in Wisconsin so that he
could destroy unions. But did they know that when they were voting
for Walker to destroy the unions that Walker was also destroying
their own jobs, their own pensions, their own livings?
This is like the so-called "frivolous lawsuit
movement." People are told about frivolous lawsuits using up our tax
money and wasting time in courts, so they create a referendum that
people vote on and, poof, frivolous lawsuits are a thing of the
past. Then one of the voters loses an arm at work and goes to court.
He wins and is awarded $30,000.00. He gets angry and says his arm is
worth more than that and that's when he learns the he voted to lower
all the court awards. He says, "But I voted against 'frivolous
lawsuits.'" No...he voted to let business run roughshod over
employees and leave them stranded should they get injured on the
job. He voted to make sure businesses can get away with murder.
How did these people who do nothing for the
voters ever get into office? Identity issues is how they got there.
Some have called these fringe issues. However, the best term is
identity issues and there’s a bit of psychology involved, so pay
You see, when
a person identifies with an issue, that person invests his/her ego
into that issue. And when someone argues against that issue, the
person invested feels that s/he is being attacked personally.
This is a very, very important concept that we all must grasp if
we are going to ever break the hold of partisan politics on us.
What are the identity issues?
Abortion, education, taxes, guns, terrorism, homosexual marriage,
and Islamophobia are the bulk, with the big three being, “guns, God,
Abortion has become a God issue, though if we study the major
religions, we’ll learn that the idea that life begins at conception
is a very modern idea and not found in the early religious writings
(like the Bible).
During the time of Jesus, life began with the first breath, or
the “breath of life.” The word for breath is the same word for soul,
because with the first breath, one breathed in the soul, as with the
last breath, they breathe it out.
Hating Muslims is the latest issue to bring like minds (of little
intelligence) together. I would like every person screaming about
the Muslim problem, for just one day, to substitute the word Jew and
record every screed of that day. Then play it back and try to tell
yourself that those are not Nazi screeds.
Lumping all Muslims together with terrorists would be like
lumping all Christians together with Tim McVeigh, Dylan Roof, and
Here is something I published in an old newsletter. This is what
happens when an identity issue is attacked:
Norepinephrine is a neurotransmitter that triggers a
protective state when we believe our thoughts have to be
protected from others. One who is attached to a belief
system who comes up against arguments contrary to that
belief system experiences a rush of “fight or flight”
chemicals such as adrenaline, noradrenaline and cortisol,
normally associated with survival. In this defensive state,
the primitive part of the brain interferes with rational
thinking and the limbic system knocks out most of the
working memory, physically causing narrow mindedness.
Yes, we become “physically” narrow minded. And in a narrow minded
state we will fight for what we feel is right rather than actually
think about what is right. We’ll vote for that person who will stand
up to our enemies and fight for me, my person, my issue.
The problem is, the person you vote for might or might not
actually fight for you once elected. S/He promised to. S/He made a
big deal of your issue. But whether or not s/he will actually do
something, well…sometimes they put that off.
If they were to fix your issue, 100%, then why would you vote for
them next election?
We know that politicians use the identity issues to get into
That politician who hates seeing gay people get married as much
as you do gets into office on the gay issue, and then changes the
banking laws that wipe out your pensions, repossess your home, and
send your jobs overseas.
You voted for ONE issue only, but your elected official had a lot
of issues to take care of because s/he has to pay back the wealthy
who gave her/him the money to get elected.
Do you see what’s happening here?
De Toqueville once said that the basis of most political
friendships is a common hatred.
Quite simply, for most, it’s not what we love that brings us
together politically, it’s what we hate. And when we put our being
into that hatred, nothing else matters.
People who focus solely on the 2nd amendment and their
“right” to carry arms are very protective of that right and vote
only for someone who promises to protect that right; and while the
voter is so focused on protecting that right, the person he voted
for is stealing his social security,
robbing his pension,
and shipping his job overseas.
Sadly, few of these voters ever realize what is going on because their entire
being is invested in protecting their guns.
And politicians know this. The NRA knows this. And the whole gun
industry knows this. Every time the NRA published: Obama’s coming
for your guns, gun sales went through the roof. Profits were made.
And yet, let me show you the room in which President Obama stores
all the guns he’s confiscated.
This is why I despise partisan politics. The bad guys play dirty,
and they seem to be winning. Because of identity issues,
gerrymandering, and voter suppression, we have lost our democracy.
Today, we elect representatives who listen to lobbyists who design
I will attempt to sum it up briefly. We’ll start by quoting the
Conservatives felt out-muscled on a wide range of
public-policy fronts, blaming the media not only for the
twin debacles of Watergate and Vietnam but also for
contributing to the Right's defeat on issues such as civil
rights and the environment.
Conservatives cried endlessly about the liberal media, even
though, at the time, the media got it right. The people wanted Nixon
out of office, the war ended, the environment cleaned up, and civil
rights. The people got what they wanted.
Battered, the right went to work gaining control of the media,
while the left went to work focusing on grassroots movements.
Many conservatives felt that there were no
conservative voices out there, and thus conservative talk radio
started up and soon conservatives found they could actually profit from professing
their views. Conservative talk because big business.
Then, while that was going on, businesses started
gathering up stations, one station at a time, and soon they had acquired over 90%
of the media.
All the while they cried out about the “liberal media,” even
though that liberal media was rapidly vanishing.
This is your consolidated media. These are huge corporations, and
corporations tend to be very conservative. Many conservatives still
complain about the liberal media today, even though it hardly
exists. So if you think the media is liberal, that simply means the
media is not as conservative as you are.
When we drop the labels of "I’m a liberal and you’re a
conservative," or "he’s a liberal and I’m a conservative," we
oftentimes find that we stand on the same side of many issues.
Always be aware that those with the real power (the moneyed),
want the battle between liberals and conservatives to rage on,
because that way, the people will never realize that the real
struggle is The People v The Money, or the 99% v 1%.
When we start to fight back, they call it a “class war.” They
didn’t call it a class war when Ronald Reagan fired off the first
volley; when “trickle down” became our salient economic theory; when
wages began to stagnate and the gap between the rich and the poor
began to widen. Even George H W Bush called it "Voodoo Economics." But
none dare call it a class war.
The rich and powerful tell us today we have to work harder, that
we have to be more productive. They tell us that hard work and
higher productivity will get us ahead.
But that is a lie because the simple fact is: Productivity in
America has never dropped off since the eighties. It’s always
continued to grow while those providing the productivity (the
workers), earned less and less, performing more and more work.
Trickle Down Economics:
was the start of our current class war
redistributed wealth upwards
shipped jobs overseas
created the wealth gap we have today
has never, ever been shown to help the middle class
In a recent poll (A
New York Times/CBS News Poll on Income Inequality and Workers’
60% of Americans feel we have to do something about income
Though income inequality is a “populist” issue, it is not as
popular as the movement to overturn Citizens United.
Income inequality finds its roots in an identity issue. And that
issue is the first issue I brought up in this paper: The Battle
People attached to this identity issue see all the
"isms" as one and the same,
and all are bad, bad, bad. They use terms like Leftists, Socialism,
Marxism, etc, and to that person they are all the same, and no
contrary information (such as actual facts) can make a difference.
For example, take Social Democracy, or Democratic Socialism. To
the identity voter this is the same as communism. And even though
today’s Capitalism (the worst form of socialism there is,
where we privatize profits and socialize costs and loss)
is picking their pockets, moving their jobs overseas, and stealing
their pensions, these voters hate everything attached to
It’s an irrational hatred that is fed by the wealthy. The wealthy
want to continue ripping off the public while being protected by
these identity voters who are willing to kill to keep the wealthy
Democratic Socialism is quite simple. It’s a philosophy that our
taxes should pay for our health care, care for the commons (prisons,
schools, parks, hospitals, and the environment), and take care of
the people. In a country where they have democratic socialism,
children do not go to bed hungry. In a country where they have
democratic socialism, the government is the employer of last resort.
If a person cannot find a job in the private sector, that person
will be employed by the government to care for the commons.
The arguments against this can be distilled to: this will cause a
dependency on the government, and people will get “free stuff.”
As George Carlin put it: “Conservatives say if
you don't give the rich more money, they will lose their incentive
to invest. As for the poor, they tell us they've lost all incentive
because we've given them too much money.”
And since this is an identity issue, contrary facts do not
matter. In countries with democratic socialism, they do not see
people getting lazy and becoming dependent on the government and, a
plain and simple fact is that people live better quality lives. But
you can’t tell that to an identity voter.
In America we have a very, very strange condition. Someone who
has a little more than someone else looks down upon those who have
less. I’ve got mine; screw you.
And now for some internet memes:
I find this ironic since as far as we know,
the one thing Jesus was reported to have said most often was to care
for the poor.
We can fix our problems only when we stop blaming the victims.
Let me digress here and tell you a little bit about Cognitive
There is a belief fostered among Americans that we are inherently
better human beings that all those "others." After we were attacked
and 3,000 of "ours" killed, it was this belief that allowed us to
invade a nation that had nothing to do with the attack and was no
threat to us at all, killing a million people, injuring still more,
displacing 4 million, and leaving 4-5 million orphans behind, with
that entire section of the globe in turmoil expecting even more
death and destruction in their future.
However, and here is where the Cognitive Dissonance comes
in, back home, other than going to war for "we who are inherently
more valuable that those others," we do absolutely nothing for the
masses. In fact, we do less than nothing. We don't have universal
health care, we don't pay living wages, we incarcerate more than any
nation in the world, we cut education, poison the water, air, earth,
and food supply, and continue driving this bus right off the cliff
while our scientists tell us, "Hey, how about putting on a little
Now that is some Cognitive Dissonance.
Imagine a USA in which critical thinking is practiced.
If we look back on those standardized tests we knew as “No Child
Left Behind,” every child was left behind because those tests did
not teach our children how to think; they taught them what to think.
As someone who has taught school, knowing things is secondary to
knowing how to think clearly and critically.
Imagine a USA in which critical thinking is practiced.
What Are The Populist Issues?
Populist issues are those that have more than 50% of the people
If 90% of people want background checks before someone can
purchase a gun, then that is a populist issue.
If congress does nothing and ignores that 90%, that’s one sign we
no longer have a Democratic Republic.
And we lost our democratic republic by people voting for identity
issues. If someone hates equal marriage or abortion or thinks we’re
going to take his guns away, he voted for his particular issue and
elected a representative who went to Washington DC to ignore the
will of the people.
This is why I hate partisan politics. In the end, the will of the
people is not carried out. We end up fighting over petty issues,
nothing gets done, and the wealthy are the only ones who benefit.
We have a saying here in Minnesota: If nothing changes, nothing
Populism in the US wants to “take back the government,” but not
from the leaders and representatives; from the corporate hold on it.
Its banner proclaims: Making government work for the people, not
So, here are some populist issues. If we are ever going to get
this country to work properly, these are some of the issues we must
demand of our candidates.
Let’s face it: why allow someone to get elected who will not work
for the people?
Gun Reform: Let’s face it, doing nothing is not working.
There are many, many things we can do to bring down gun deaths in
this country. We can treat guns like cars: license them, demand
training, and demand they’re insured. Personally, I’d like to see
specific psychological testing that would weed out those people who
are most likely to walk into a theater and shoot up everyone.
Citizens United: People on both sides of the political
spectrum think that this decision was the worst decision our Supreme
Court has ever made. But you won’t hear about this one much because
the media is making billions and billions of dollars. They don’t
want to kill their goose that lays golden eggs. A related issue is
just getting all money out of politics. Why should the wealthy have
a louder voice than the people?
The Environment and Climate Change: The people want clean
air, clean water, and clean food. The people want something done
about climate change. The science is no longer questioned; it is
accepted. But business wants business as usual. Even very ignorant
people can figure out that if we clean up our environment and lower
the CO2 levels, the benefits to humanity are worth the effort.
Rebuilding our Infrastructure: When Ronald Reagan was elected
president, we were already 20 years behind schedule for repairing
our infrastructure. Bridges are collapsing and engineers are warning
us of even more problems. We are told we cannot afford this, yet we
cannot afford not to do this. Everyone needs the infrastructure, and
business/commerce needs it even more.
Jobs: Politicians talk talk talk about jobs. Yet, they make
it easier and easier for businesses to send jobs overseas. One
solution is creating Worker Co-ops; businesses that give workers a
stake in the operation. Studies show that productivity goes up and
so does job satisfaction. Instead of tax breaks for those who ship
jobs overseas, tax those and give the tax breaks to businesses with
Unions: The thing about unions is we all know one horrible
union story. The things we don’t know about unions could fill
volumes. One reason we know so little about unions is they’ve been
stripped from our history texts. High school kids do not even know
that people died for a 40 hour work week. Unions built the strongest
middle class in the world. Even businesses that did not have unions
had to compete with the unions because the people saw that unions
had better wages, better health care, and pensions. They said, “Hey,
they’ve got those benefits. We want them.” Today, for some crazy
reason, we hear: “Hey they’ve got benefits I don’t have. Take them
away from them!” This facilitates the race to the bottom. One feels
better as long as there are people who have less than them. It’s a
Living Wages: When the minimum wage was established, it was a
living wage. If a person doesn’t make a living wage, they fall back
on the country’s safety net, which you and I pay for. Workers at
Walmart, MacDonald’s, Burger King, etc, depend on our tax dollars to
survive. They cost the taxpayers billions and billions of dollars.
And this is the worst form of socialism, because we, the tax payers,
are paying employees what their employers are not paying them; so
the businesses reap the profits and we pay the costs. This is one
thing that upwards of 80% of Americans want to see fixed. They want
a minimum wage that is a living wage.
Pay Equality for Women:
Personally, I cannot believe we have
to fight for this. We are a country based upon equality, yet it took
women 143 years to get the right to vote in America and yet still,
they do not have a right to equal pay for equal work. This is
Affordable College: Did you know that there was a time that
college sports brought in enough money to colleges to keep student
costs down? Our taxes helped too. And was this good for America? Of
course. Colleges produce our workforce of the future: teachers,
executives, leaders, engineers, leaders in the world of technology.
Today, when a young people go into debt for the rest of their lives
to get a college education, they become almost “indentured servants”
to businesses. They have no say in their work, they can’t afford to
quit and find a better job; they are basically wage slaves.
Affordable college is as American as apple pie. It was around since
our beginning. Here’s a fun little fact: President Obama paid off
his student loans while he was running for president the first time.
Take Back Wall Street: Do you know what the difference is
between a banker and a pirate? A pirate doesn’t get to keep his
booty when he sinks his own ship. The people on Wall Street broke
laws and sunk their own ships and not only did they get to keep all
the money they stole, we gave them even more to keep their ships
afloat. Banking has to be for the people, not for the wealthy. In
Iceland, they jailed their bankers. In America, only Bernie Madoff
went to prison, but that was because he robbed from the rich while
bankers robbed from the poor. Again, this is another example of the
poor having some really bad lobbyists.
Trade Policies: The problem in the past, whether liberal or
conservative, is that trade policies always seemed to favor
businesses and put greater burdens on the workers. And this was done
by calling them “trade agreements” when in fact, they are treaties.
Treaty discussions must be conducted “by and with the Advice and
Consent of the Senate.” Trade agreements have become “executive
agreements,” and need no input from the senate, no vote. NAFTA and
CAFTA were horrible for American workers. And this new one, known by
some of us as SHAFTA (TPP) is another that will put the “shaft” to
workers. We need trade policies that favor the people and not the
Universal Health Care: In most nations, it’s just assumed
that health care is a right, not a privilege. Every time a
politician points to another country that does health care better
than we do, some other politician points out the flaws and how
UnAmerican it is to do something they do. Well, okay, we are
America. We can look at all the “better” systems and create our own
that is better than all of them. Right? Well, let us roll up our
sleeves and do that.
Care for the Vulnerable in Our Society:
From Jesus to Gandhi
we’ve been told we will be judged by how we treat the weakest among
us. There is a horrid movement in this country to shame the poor and
blame the poor for being poor. It’s time to care for the poor, the
handicapped, and the elderly. We all know this is right. Now we
just have to do it. We have to strengthen the safety net. Make sure
Social Security and Medicare are both sound. This is the least we
can do as human beings and this is a very critical populist issue.
The people want this because anyone one of us could need that safety
net without a moment’s notice. And all of us will be seniors some
Peace: Everyone wants peace, and they’re always willing to go
to war to get it. That seems to be how it works. We’re always
fighting for peace. But the simple fact is this: war causes endless
war; if you want peace, you have to stop warring. There is a
wonderful little book online called
War is a Racketby an American war hero, General Smedley Butler. No one despises
war more than a veteran and I am a veteran. I’m tired of old men
creating new wars for young men to die in. Our invasion of Iraq was
the biggest blunder in America’s history. Everything that is wrong
with the Middle East today is a result of our meddling. There had
never been a car bomb in Iraq in its history till we invaded. ISIS would
not exist were it not for our invasion. And ISIS’s main goal is to
prove to the Muslim world that we in the West are at war with Islam.
Thus, every time we kill a single innocent Muslim in our attacks,
that is the proof they need. Listening to candidates boast how tough
they are and how they’re going to wipe out ISIS makes my blood boil.
We need not play into their hands. Attacking Iraq played right into
the hands of Bin Laden. Let’s not be stupid again. If you want
peace, then stop warring. It’s that simple.
The End to Slavery
I’m sure many of you reading this just said to yourselves, “Wait,
Whether you are aware of it or not, slavery is alive and thriving
in the world, and ending it is a populist issue that must be talked
about in length because the average person just doesn’t realize how
universal this problem is today.
The companies that ended up being the face of slave-produced
shrimp say they were not aware of the working conditions involved in
their shrimp processing chain, and that they abhor the forced-labor
practices uncovered by Associated Press. Some claim to have taken
steps to remedy their tainted supply chains. [
Do you really think these corporations didn’t know something
“fishy” was going on? These companies choose their sources looking
for the “cheapest” suppliers. With the costs so low, are you going
to tell me that nobody suspected that slavery was being used?
Apparently the heads of the chocolate industry know all about
children being sold into slavery to work chocolate plantations and
have done little to stop it beyond tossing the media a few pithy
words. Profits are quite high when costs are so low.
Here are the companies known to use slave-produced chocolate:
Kraft:(including Cadbury, Nabisco, Toblerone)
General Mills (including Häagen Dazs)
Lindt and Sprungli (including Ghirardelli)
Unilever (including Breyer’s Ice Cream)
And there are others.
Now here’s a fun fact: owning a slave today, as they were owned
in the early 1800s in the South, would cost more than paying minimum
Have you got that? It’s cheaper to pay minimum wage today than it
would be to own slaves.
You see, owning slaves means that you have to house them, feed
them, clothe them, provide them transportation, and you have to give
them medical care. Slaves are an investment. You have to keep them
healthy to keep them productive.
Today, just pay lousy wages. If you find a person who hates his
job and just isn’t productive enough, fire him and hire someone
else. People who need a job will take a job at crappy wages.
Now get this: if it’s immoral to own slaves, it is even more
immoral to pay less than living wages.
Yet, slavery goes on and on and on and because some people
somewhere are reaping huge profits.
We must stop slavery everywhere, from sweatshops to free prison
labor. There’s a saying: You get what you pay for. Look around. The
people have nothing. We’ve paid for nothing.
We must end slavery and human trafficking.
The Future Starts Today
You can draw a line in the sand and proclaim you’re a liberal or
conservative and that you are at war with the enemy (a liberal or a
conservative) or you can admit that, in the end, you’re just a human
being, trying to make it through the day and get home to your
family. You can acknowledge that everyone is just like you. You can
admit that we’re all in this together and that it’s the moneyed
oligarchy that is trying to keep us at each other’s throats because
they know that revolution, real revolution, ends on a scaffold at
the guillotine where their throats are at stake.
You can help them by believing that other human beings are your
enemies. You can help them by focusing on their “fringe” issues,
those “identity” issues that separate us all.
Or you can fight back by supporting issues that we all want and
need; issues that will make us all prosperous. Issues that bring us
together rather than tear us asunder.
We have another saying here in Minnesota: When everyone prospers,
Also, a rising tide raises all boats.
This is a country I would love to be proud of again. Because
let’s face it: what do we all want as human beings? Health,
happiness, a good job, family, and peace of mind.
If you think about that, it should not be so damn hard to get all
that. Unless you’re a puppet on a string and you think you need that
new car, a 60 inch HDTV, and the latest fashions.
If we all focus on what’s real and possible, what makes us truly
content, what makes us human and what makes us humane, and
what makes others truly content, then we have to focus on populist
issues. We have to put down our grudges and prejudices and focus on
what we all want and need. We have to work together realizing that
our neighbors are not our enemies.
And this will change our futures. Not overnight, but soon. Very
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