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OpEdNews Op Eds    H3'ed 7/3/17

America: A Supposed""Democracy"

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There are some great writers and media personalities who understand that the American people have very little voice, and are powerless to change the direction or the policies of our "democratic" government. I'm thinking about the United States, but this is true in most of the so-called "democracies" in the world.

we are nazis now, scott richard
we are nazis now, scott richard
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I use the term "democracies" conventionally, to describe those nations that vote and maintain a veneer of free speech and a free press. One important thing is that "free speech" does not automatically translate into a democratic society. The right to voice dissent is important, but it is not sufficient to ensure democracy. There are many societies today that have the right to criticize their governments and their leaders without repercussions, but no way do they qualify as democracies.

The best example that I can think of is the United States of America. There are many citizens and non-citizens that believe that because Americans can openly criticize their leaders and the policies of their government, that this proves America to be a democracy. People, and Americans particularly, should understand that "free speech" is only one factor that makes up a democratic nation. In the United States, the right to criticize those in power and our form of government itself provides the illusion of a democratic state.

The fact is, the people in power in the United States use the right of free speech to play people off against each other, and to keep the mainstream of political discourse confined in a "safe" range. This is the primary reason why people get distracted from the real problems that we face in America. The mainstream media portrays our system of government in terms of Republicans and Democrats. They constantly quote Democratic Senators and Congressman and Republican Congressman and Senators and spend time quoting the president and his twitter tweets and that makes up 90% of the news.

This is all a gigantic game that they use to keep us distracted. The truth is that they never report on things that really matter. One example, was the occupy movement and the way they shut it down. There was no reporting on how Obama used the fusion centers which consist of local police, state police, the FBI, the NSA, the National Guard, and other intelligence agencies, and there are approximately 12 of these fusion centers located throughout the United States. Fusion centers were mobilized to shut down the occupy movement. Some of the tactics used against occupy were brutal and many people were hurt and jailed. Still the mainstream media did not comment on how the occupy movement was shut down.

Few Americans questioned the demise of Occupy. We were distracted by other "news". This tactic is not a good omen for a supposed democracy.

All the topics that are most important are off-limits for Republicans and Democrats and the Mainstream Media alike. Peace. Election theft. The illegitimacy of the American Surveillance State. Evidence that it is our own CIA that is creating the "Terror Threat" used to justify repression and militarism. Alternative accounts of the assassinations and "suicides" that have robbed progressive politics of its most charismatic leaders.

Even people like Thom Hartmann on his regular show and you show on RT America called the Big Picture is part and parcel of the use of mass distraction. Hartmann constantly degrades the Republicans and sometimes degrades the Democrats but still talks about how we can change "the system" by calling Congressman and Senators and voicing our opinion. This gives us the illusion that we have power and that the people's will can change the direction of the government. I think he sincerely believes that you can change the system from within, but the reality is that his voice serves to prop up a failed model of governance.

The only time that I've seen recently where the people's will changed the direction of the government was when Obama wanted to send cruise missiles to Damascus because Bashir al-Assad had allegedly "used chemical weapons against his own people". (A United Nations investigation revealed it was the CIA-backed rebels who used chemical weapons.) While Americans did write their Congressman and Senators, the British House of Commons voted not to authorize the use of force against Syria, and Vladimir Putin offered to take the chemical weapons away from the Syrians. The vote in the British House of Commons, and Vladimir Putin's involvement were more important than what the people had to say.

Another case in point is the war in Iraq. Most people in the United States did not want the government to invade Iraq. Weeks before the invasion, we staged the largest world-wide peace march in history. But Congress voted more than 2 to 1 to give Bush a blanket authorization for war. The United States started bombing Iraq, then staged an invasion. All the mainstream outlets were cheering for the Americans, and no dissent against the war was tolerated. Even though the invasion of Iraq was a war crime, nobody has ever been prosecuted. This does not bode well for supposed democracy or the rule of law.

The mainstream media does not like to talk too much about foreign policy. One reason that they don't talk much about foreign policy is because if they did, they would have to tell how United States and Saudi Arabia along with Qatar and other Gulf nations of the Wahhabi Muslim sect, armed Isis and funded their attack on Syria. Even though most people know that this really happened because the reporting from outside the United States, there is been no accountability or even questioning the policies of the United States government from any elected official. When a government does anything that they want to do, without the people's knowledge or consent that does not bode well for is supposed democracy.

When the United States shot down a Syrian Russian-made jet it was hardly mentioned in the mainstream press. When the Russians said that they would target United States warplanes, that was hardly mentioned. But when Donald Trump sends a tweet that is big time news.

Everything you see and hear has a political slant and is meant to distract from the real problems we have in America. We have big problems such as driving while black. Walking while black, and being black in general. How much has this nation changed since the Civil Rights Act was enacted? How many times do we have to see congressional districts gerrymandered by both parties to make sure that the party that does the redistricting stays in power? It was only a few years ago that Congressman Dennis Kucinich had his district eliminated. He was silenced with the full complicity of the Democrats. Another example was the candidacy of Bernie Sanders. The Sanders campaign was constantly impeded by the DNC. They used everything from Superdelegates to voter role purges to changing the vote lectronically to keep Sanders from winning the nomination. Some of this story came out in John Podesta's emails. The Democrats have denounced the release of emails, blaming the Russians (!) and the New York Times publishes this story as though it were the Truth. They want you to feel so much better than Donald Trump, who Tells LIES. The Times and the people who believe in it are a big part of the problem.

Bernie Sanders didn't say a word about the fact that the nomination was stolen from him in broad daylight. When Sanders backed Hillary Clinton, that's when many Democrats walked out of the convention and refused to vote. This is probably the primary reason why we ended up with Donald Trump.

Trump is more than a clown. The man is a danger to the Republic. He has no knowledge of foreign affairs and he's giving free rein to the State Department and the Defense Department. This means that the military-industrial complex and all the people that profit from it, will make sure that we have new wars to fight and new enemies to fight to keep the bloated military budget intact. This is a danger not only to United States but for the rest of the world.

Trump campaigned on better relations with Russia and called NATO "outmoded". Many people including Dr. Paul Craig Roberts supported Trump because Hillary Clinton is a known warmonger. (Think Libya--that was her baby.) He also said he would not cut Medicare or Social Security, yet he put people in his cabinet that want to do just that. This man is not only a clown he is a pathological liar. If the mainstream media had real journalists instead of talking heads parroting what the politicians say, we would see scathing commentary on how our president lies to us. It was refreshing to see Joe Scarborough and Mika come out against Trump. It was also entertaining to see Donald Trump tweeting next to things about Joe Scarborough and Mika supposedly bleeding from a facelift. This, unfortunately, is our president. This does not bode well for supposed to democracy

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Tim Gatto is Ret. US Army and has been writing against the Duopoly for the last decade. He has two books on Amazon, Kimchee Days or Stoned Colds Warriors and Complicity to Contempt.

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