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It's Party Time on the Titanic--and Screw the Slobs in Steerage

By       Message Patrick Walker       (Page 1 of 3 pages)     Permalink    (# of views)   12 comments

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So let us not talk falsely now, the hour is getting late.

--Bob Dylan

"All Along the Watchtower"

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Introduction: The Party to (Literally) End All Parties

Without hyperbole, this article will make a case for organizing a political movement--appropriately called "Indispensable"--that could literally save civilization. So, I wish to state my thesis up front, so that crucial thesis doesn't get lost amid my arguments and documentation supporting it. That would be the worst conceivable case of readers--by a writer's own fault--not seeing the forest for the trees.

From flickr.com: The Titanic {MID-153926}
The Titanic
(Image by Hippie Bowman)
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So here's my "indispensable" thesis: That our two ruling U.S. parties--the "duopoly" of Republicans and Democrats--have abandoned all policy sanity; for the sake of serving their plutocratic and militarist donors (essentially the same "Wall Street and War Street" donors for both parties), they've abandoned all serious, rational concern about nuclear war and climate change, not to mention the most elementary social justice. As a result, the only identifiable aim of Republican and Democrat policies is letting themselves and their Wall Street and War Street donors "party on the Titanic"-- in other words, to "party like there's no tomorrow." No tomorrow, that is, for human civilization. To say nothing of the endless innocent animal species we'll take down with us.

Needless to say, this policy decision to party on the Titanic was not made democratically. As is utterly typical, our Wall Street, War Street, and duopoly "betters" in first class didn't consider us poor slobs in steerage at all-- except to the extent it's been necessary to brainwash us that the Titanic is being steered by responsible adults. To use Henry Giroux's brilliant analytic term, we're disposable-- as disposable as the reams of toilet paper the selfish, hedonistic overindulgence of a "party to end all parties" would necessitate. To our Wall Street, War Street, and duopoly betters in first-class, we unwashed slobs in steerage are--like so much toilet paper--simply there to be shat upon and flushed.

Just as I've consciously chosen the movement name "Indispensable" to contrast with "disposable"--and to emphasize how crucial our movement is to civilization's survival--I'm consciously exploiting here the marvelous coincidence of the term steerage designating the poorer, lower-class passengers on a ship. The criminal duopoly--not just Trump Republicans but the Clinton Democrats who elevated him to power--are steering us straight toward the iceberg, full steam ahead. Unless we poor slobs in steerage start thinking of ourselves as not disposable but "Indispensable" and seize control of steering the ship, that apocalyptic collision is inevitable.

Why U.S. Duopoly Elections Suck: Both Parties Are Cancerous

Except for the roughly one-third minority of U.S. citizens--charitably described as brainwashed--who still approve of Donald Trump, few Americans would have trouble with describing him as a hideously ugly tumor on our body politic.

But hideously ugly tumors, real or metaphorical, rarely grow in isolation, and are frequently symptoms of an underlying, dangerously metastasizing, cancer. Now, I'm no expert on actual cancers, but anyone with common sense--and the most rudimentary knowledge of history or civics--knows that unsightly metaphorical tumors like Trump never grow on a body politic in isolation; they're always symptoms of a grave--and highly advanced--political disease. Indeed, an especially astute student of history and politics, Pulitzer Prize journalist Chris Hedges, has frequently stressed how populist demagogues--and worse yet, outright fascists--have frequently risen to power when so-called liberals have failed to play their implicitly promised (and once expected) role of defending working class and otherwise vulnerable people from capitalism's worst excesses.

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Now, our cancerous political system is essentially a two-party system, where only Republicans and Democrats currently have a realistic shot at wielding power. So, common sense alone would powerfully hint that the prominent growth of a ghastly tumor like Trump--and nothing's more politically prominent than the president of the world's most powerful nation--signifies a lethal political cancer eating away at both major parties. For if Democrats offered even a tolerable alternative, we'd never face the prospect of an administration as repulsive--as rash, as extremist, as cruel, as unqualified, and as brainlessly arrogant--as Trump's. If we knew absolutely nothing else about Democrats, that voters in a two-party system preferred Trump and his Republicans to them would alone be a savage indictment of our jackass party.

The Real News about Today's Democrats

In fact, we know a lot about Democrats, if by "we" we mean those of us who largely ignore mainstream media--owned by an ever-smaller cadre of biased corporate conglomerates--and trust independent progressive media for most of our news. And what we know is that, at the leadership level, Democrats have not merely remained the corrupt neoliberal party disgustedly sketched by Hedges in the immediate wake of Trump's shocking victory. Instead, rejecting the soul-searching such a shocking defeat ought to produce, they've doubled down on the same corruption, the same rejection of progressive reform, that caused last November's electoral disaster.

As just noted, mere common sense ought to tell mainstream news media that the election of a president as hideous as Trump, in a two-party system, is really a story about the intolerable corruption and irresponsibility of both major parties. And the same common sense should inform them that Democrats' doubling down on the same corruption that cost them the election is a big effing deal. But as Upton Sinclair memorably told us, "It is difficult to get a man to understand something when his salary depends on his not understanding it." And with the size of the salaries now paid (at least to mainstream network news personalities) by our conglomerated corporate media, the unwillingness to understand, let alone report, common sense that menaces the interests of Wall Street, War Street, and their duopoly lackeys is more flagrant than ever.

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Patrick Walker is co-founder of Revolt Against Plutocracy (RAP) and the Bernie or Bust movement it spawned. Before that, he cut his activist teeth with the anti-fracking and Occupy Scranton PA movements. No longer with RAP, he actively seeks (more...)
 

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