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OpEdNews Op Eds    H3'ed 7/4/11

A Question for Reflection on the 4th of July: Is the United States a representative democracy or a mirage democracy

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-           Politicians and economic powers have perverted the democratic ideal.

 

-           A professor from Barcelona explains -- the political structures, instead of protecting our welfare and living standards the government is doing the opposite.   It is the institutional machine that is creating mass unemployment, precarious employment and unprecedented limitations on future hopes and expectations.

 

-           Another says the political parties have lost touch with the people. They have limited the exercise of democracy to every four years and have stripped democracy of its true meaning.

 

-           "They have reduced us to nothing. They tell us go vote, go vote, go vote -- you go vote, pal."

 

The Spanish call themselves Real Democracy Already (Democracia Real Ya (DRY)). Like Americans they live under a two party system.   There are other small parties, but they are shut out of real participation. The statement of DRY speaks mostly about creating a true democracy. They say:   "Democracy belongs to the people (demos = people, kra'tos = government) which means that government is made of every one of us. However, in Spain most of the political class does not even listen to us. . . Lust for power and its accumulation in only a few; create inequality, tension and injustice. The obsolete and unnatural economic model fuels the social machinery in a growing spiral that consumes itself by enriching a few and sends into poverty the rest. . . The will and purpose of the current system is the accumulation of money, not regarding efficiency and the welfare of society. Wasting resources, destroying the planet, creating unemployment and unhappy consumers. Citizens are the gears of a machine designed to enrich a minority which does not regard our needs. We are anonymous, but without us none of this would exist, because we move the world."

 

Sounds familiar, like echoes of conversations many Americans are having. As a result thousands of Americans have joined www.October2011.org.   This is a movement to demand an end to corporatism and militarism.   Like the Spanish, the Greeks, Tunisians and Egyptians, among others, October2011, will be taking over a public space, Freedom Plaza in Washington, DC beginning on October 6.   This day is the beginning of the 11th year of the Afghanistan War and that week is the beginning of a new federal fiscal year with an austerity budget for everything except the military. October2011.org has written the activists around the world seeking a common agenda of economic justice and real democracy letting them know that their revolution is our revolution. It seems much of the world is waking up to the need to topple the oligarchy at the same time.

 

Like Spain, October2011.org is led by individuals, not organizations.   People from a wide range of issues see the common problem of corporate control of government preventing the change America needs.   This includes ending the ongoing wars, reducing the military budget, better pay and jobs for workers, Medicare for all, reversal of the degradation of the environment, ending the wealth divide and putting in place a clean, sustainable energy economy, among others.

 

The solutions to the critical issues facing the country are evident to many but the corporate interests who profit from the status quo prevent real change. The electoral system is closed to all but the corporate parties. To transform the government into one that puts the peoples interests before those of the economic elite, will require a showing of power.   It will require an ongoing, independent movement that demands real change and has the power to insist on it.   On October 6th a major step to showing the development of such a movement and demanding real change begins. Join us.

 

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Kevin Zeese is co-chair of Come Home America, www.ComeHomeAmerica.US which seeks to end U.S. militarism and empire. He is also co-director of Its Our Economy, www.ItsOurEconomy.US which seeks to democratize the economy and give people greater (more...)
 
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