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Corporate America and the GOP: one goal, one agenda; end democracy

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Our American democracy is in great danger, under siege by two greed-driven entities that have one mission, one objective in mind; and that is to bring an end to government of the people and replace it with government by those who command the most power, influence and wealth. And in pursuing their deceitful goals, they have a co-conspirator; the right-wing dominated U.S. Supreme Court.

All we need do is review recent actions and directions taken by these two entities, aided and abetted by their cooperating judicial associates, and we can see exactly what they have in mind for creating a new order to establish dominion over the American people. While each of them has its own agenda they, collectively, pursue a common agenda designed to transform our democracy into a plutocracy, in which there are only two classes in America; the wealthy and those who serve the wealthy. Here is my take on the agenda of each and how they are tied together:

Corporate America: while never looked upon with reverence or great trust, there once was some degree of mutual respect between it and the American worker. There have always been those corporations who took every possible advantage of workers, treating them as little more than pieces of property; human chattel. However, for the most part, it seemed that the majority of corporations did treat their workers with at least some decency and fairness. Those days are over.

From those times, fast forward to the 21st century where corporate decency and fairness has largely disappeared. The majority of U.S. corporations that employed large numbers of Americans have, since about the 1980's, used every means at their disposal to eliminate American labor and, thereby, to maximize profits. Some of the reduction of labor was, of course, due to automation, but CEO's assigned a very high priority to outsourcing jobs to overseas nations; the rush to transfer U.S. manufacturing out of America has never abated.

Today, rust belts and ghost towns have replaced manufacturing centers in America. The manufacturing foundation of America is no more. The giant corporations, especially transnational corporations, could care less about the American workforce; their only objective is to keep increasing their bottom lines. Globalization has dealt a mortal blow to American labor.

To achieve its objectives, Corporate America knows that it must gain control over the government of the United States; the House, the Senate, and even the president. The Corporate America of which I speak includes the banking industry as well as the massive defense industry, both with enormous power and influence in Washington. Based on the actions of the U.S. Congress, it appears that our legislative process has now been made subservient to the dictates and demands of these corporate masters. Is there any question of who is in control of the process?

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The Republican Party has long been an institutionalized tool of Corporate America. The two are, in effect, joined at the hip, with nearly identical ideological beliefs and agendas to advance their interests. The GOP pledges allegiance only to corporate power and influence, not to the U.S. Constitution or the American people.

Its actions and motives in Congress could not be clearer, or more brazen. Any legislation that could be harmful to corporations in any way is now opposed by the entire Republican membership in both houses of Congress. Health care reform that might curb abuses and increase competition for the health insurance industry is an anathema; it must be killed by any legislative weapon that they can find.

Financial regulations and reforms designed to prevent the abusive practices that caused our economic crisis likewise must be prevented at all costs. The GOP will do anything to see that the Banksters remain free of any regulatory restraints so they can carry on their devious practices untouched and continue to rob the American people of their wealth, that is, what's left of it.

The GOP has now become totally committed to the filibuster, the modern-day weapon that can either stall or kill any legislation introduced in the Senate. Its use of this outdated, undemocratic Senate rule has reached historical proportions and the weak-kneed, passive and cowardly Democratic leaders seem to be in a state of paralysis. The legislative process in Congress is in gridlock and has been brought to a complete standstill. The GOP, by its devious actions, has clearly repudiated democracy.

One might say that this deadly alliance has already accomplished its objective, that being to replace our democracy with a plutocracy. The Wall Street titans gamble with investor dollars, creating risky and questionable financial instruments and, when they completely fail, the government is there to bail them out. In an atmosphere of extreme economic distress, one of the only sectors doing well is the defense industry which has constructed a money pipeline running from Congress into their coffers. And Congress never dares to make even the slightest objection to any funding that has to do with our half witted wars.

The Supreme Court exhibited its unofficial membership in this alliance with its decision on Bush v. Gore in the 2000 presidential election. In this ludicrous decision, the Court ran roughshod over states' rights and simply awarded the presidency to Bush. The appointment of Bush by decree set the stage for a further strengthening of the Republican agenda as Bush, thereafter, appointed John Roberts and Samuel Alito to the Court to replace William Rehnquist and Sandra O'Connor respectively. These two much younger appointees assured a solid Republican presence for years to come.

The Supreme Court delivered another huge gift to this alliance and to Corporate America, specifically, when it overturned the 20-year-old Austin v. Michigan Chamber of Commerce decision, which held that corporations could be banned from using general treasury funds for political purposes. This action rendered the McCain-Feingold Act, prohibiting corporations from spending general treasury funds on "electioneering communications" and independent campaign advertisements, unconstitutional.

The five justices who dominated the ruling, willing disciples of the GOP, chose to unnecessarily intervene in the political process, which will now result in a massive tilt in our democracy. Burt Neuborne, a law professor at NYU and a Supreme Court litigator said, "the decision gives a green light for a massive flow of corporate treasury money into our democracy," adding that the decision "changes the ground rules of our democracy."

After the court's decision was announced Jim Hightower said it best; "This is not judicial activism, it's judicial radicalism a black-robed political coup over America's historic democratic ideals. Five men have just overthrown the power of the people's vote, enthroning corporate money as supreme in all of our country's elections. Jefferson, Madison, and the other founders of our democratic republic are not merely spinning in their graves they're trying to claw their way out and throttle these shameful usurpers. Remember their names Alito, Kennedy, Roberts, Scalia, and Thomas. Corporate whores."

Consider the following scenario that could become a reality. As we know, the Supreme Court has opened the floodgates and millions of dollars will be flowing into the campaigns of their selected GOP candidates, greatly enhancing their chances for election to Congress. When elected, they in turn will do everything in their power to protect and advance corporate interests. Massive corporate campaign contributions will continue to pump millions into further strengthening of the GOP presence and this vicious circle will, eventually, create a GOP/Corporate America control of our entire legislative process.

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Michael Payne is an independent progressive activist. His writings deal with social, economic, political and foreign policy issues; and especially with the great dangers involved with the proliferation of perpetual war, the associated defense (more...)

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Both parties serve corporations, not just one. Whe... by janet o'connell on Friday, Feb 19, 2010 at 10:25:33 AM