China's students of that year were the upstart GenX politicos of China; they and I have a record of challenging our political establishments to reform. With us, outside-of-the-box thinking becomes a frontal assault. It's twenty years later, and the fearful jellyfish of the establishment still regard our stand for reform as taboo.
Perhaps that's because the establishment can't handle "outside of the box" thinking. Heck, Wolf Blitzer displayed his mindset yet again recently, when Vice Presidential candidate Sarah Palin "went rogue" by frankly or bluntly speaking her mind. On The Situation Room (a television show on CNN, hosted by Blitzer), imagine if I appeared with a bullhorn: "Attention Wolf Blitzer! 9/11 was an inside job! Your faith in the government is quaint!"
Well, to Mr. Blitzer, I would have to add, "sorry to shatter your world." But my point was that the fearful jellyfish of the establishment can't handle outside-of-the-box thinking. That imagined bullhorn moment would be "off the reservation" as far as they're concerned. It's off the reservation because the establishment takes it as their job to explain the government, as if it's an upright thing with integrity.
Blitzer would have a hard time working with a narrative that finds the government to be riven with corruption and an instrument in the service of crime, if not evil. Meanwhile, I would quibble that evil is the right word to apply in that description. Which is to say that I accept the description, which Blitzer thinks is only for street level, and not for CNN's studio.
Recently, a guest on Lou Dobbs (another CNN show) noted that the 2000 and 2004 elections were stolen. Yes they were, but there you have two more stories that are "off the reservation" to these media people. The media "refuse to get real," and so they are quaint, increasingly irrelevant anachronisms. Apparently, the owners of television networks think the number one job of TV is to baby sit. Blitzer and Dobbs are hired babysitters, although I also applaud Lou Dobbs for being "trade deficit aware."
Four years ago in my article, American Politics 2004, I said, "all that is predictable is that America has four more years of being screwed to expect." Ditto for this year. There's not much update, really, in my quadrennial article. But, I'm going to explain what's wrong with John McCain and Barack Obama, this year's two leading contenders for President. I will explain one thing that's wrong with John McCain specifically, and four things that are wrong with both politicians.
(For those keeping track, it's five strikes against McCain, and four strikes against Obama.)
Trade deficit awareness
What I find to be wrong with John McCain is that he is not trade deficit-aware. Saying that another way, he is trade deficit-agnostic, and I only want to support trade deficit-aware politicians.
In the 1990s, the United States was run by agnostics who thought that trade deficits were a non-issue. Doesn't money get recycled? Isn't there a grand balance that is kept by the international balance of payments? Isn't it true that "what goes around comes around," and it all comes out in the wash?--So, all business is good business--Isn't it "all good"? Well, that's what the agnostics of the 1990s thought, when they embraced a free trade system that structurally encourages trade deficits and violates the U.S. Emancipation Proclamation.
Shall I slow down to explain this more?--Okay, suppose that you buy a pair of jeans from China. You get the jeans, China gets your money. What you now have is a depreciating asset. That means the jeans in your closet will wear out. But, China's money will not wear out. What did China lose? A pair of jeans. What did China gain? Liquidity. Now, on the American side of the trade, what did we gain? A pair of jeans. What did we lose? Liquidity. The movement of money and liquidity to China is our trade deficit. America is hemmoraging liquidity. All of that money flowing from us to them is a transfer of wealth. The U.S. trade deficit approaches is near a quarter trillion with China, and approaches a trillion overall.
For those who need the simplest explanation, a trade deficit is when "we are getting poorer, and somebody else is getting richer." And this is what John McCain seems to be agnostic (unaware) about. In the year 2000, Congress passed the PNTR free trade deal with Communist China, and it could have been called "the Communist Enrichment Act of 2000." John McCain voted for it, and this served to enrich communists, dictators, tyrants, and thugs at the expense of the American worker, who now faces a decimated manufacturing sector amid a hollowed out economy.
So. I want a presidential candidate who is trade deficit-aware, and that's not John McCain. McCain has continued to endorse every free trade deal that the eye can see.
Flag on the election
To use a football metaphor, this of all years is the one when somebody should be throwing "a flag on the play." There's no referee to say, "Flag on the election! Roughing the voter!" The $850 billion bailout is an eye-popping tip-off to corruption in advance of the election, and the media will let these men smooth talk their way through a campaign like nothing's wrong. But prior to that, their FISA bill offered retroactive immunity to telecom companies that participated in warrantless wiretapping. And prior to that, candidates who care about America should have called for impeachment. And prior to that, candidates who care about America should have called for a new 9/11 investigation.