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OpEdNews Op Eds    H2'ed 4/7/09

Snake Bit - Bring Down a Nation

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Message Jon Faulkner
Americans have let their democracy slip through their fingers. They were easily conned by a handful of wealthy folk who snatched the natural resources of an entire nation, and kept them as if they were their own. It didn’t take long for that handful to control the nation’s politics. They foundered in 1929 and it took a few decades for them to bounce back, but bounce back they did, and with a vengeance.  They control the media and they say who will work the levers of power and who won’t. Today they’re in the process of transferring the last of the nation’s wealth into their pockets. This is happening in plain view and Americans haven’t the political leadership to stop it. Obama, once elected, quickly appointed a couple of old Wall Street hands to high position. Timothy Geithner is Obama’s Treasury Secretary, and Lawrence Summers is his chief financial advisor. These two personify the Foxes guarding the chicken coop. In all fairness to the greed mongers, they are only doing what comes naturally to them. Without restraint – given no limits – most human beings will self destruct just as the deregulated market has. The American people elected Ronald Reagan twice. They elected the first Bush, and then the Supreme Court installed the second Bush. Junior was very honest. He said he’d prefer a dictatorship over a democracy as long as he was the dictator. He also liked to tell his audiences at fund raisers “some people call you the elite. I call you my base.” This is candid. But such honesty and candidness, coming from a third rate politician, was valuable only if Americans had been listening. But their attention was easily diverted. One example was the Swift Boat liars who, amplified by a willing and eager media, succeeded in killing John Kerry’s chance at the White House. Americans got the leader they deserved for another four years, and the meltdown of the American economy was inevitable. President Obama, propelled into office by his populist message, has so far proven himself little more than an articulate Bush. He’s backtracking on withdrawing from Iraq. He’s escalating the war in Afghanistan. He is aiding and abetting in the continuing theft of the nation’s treasure, and the few dollars Bush left is being divvied up by the wealthy and well connected. Why, given the public’s outrage over the bailouts, hasn’t Obama listened to people like Joe Stiglitz and Paul Krugman, a pair of Nobel Prize winning economists? There are many extremely knowledgeable economists whom Obama could ask for advice. But he stays with a pair of Wall Street goons whose decisions have already proven completely ineffective in getting the nation’s economy back on track. An accident by design? Of course it is.Obama’s Wall Street Goons, Geithner and Summers, are giving away the taxpayer’s money and asking for nothing in return. These two clowns don’t even attach conditions to the giveaways! Add the banker’s bailout with the constant financial drain from the two Bush Wars and there ain’t much left. The nation’s infrastructure won’t be getting the extensive repair it needs, and new school construction will be put on hold. The hundreds of services government provides through taxes will diminish in number and quality. Americans can look forward to increased user fees. Admission fees for entry into the Nation’s Parks, tuition fees for higher education, tolls paid to use roads and bridges, school sports programs, licenses and permits and public transportation are a few of the hundreds of services maintained by user fees. Grover Norquist has been called the Field Marshall of the Bush Plan. Grover said, “My goal is to cut government in half in twenty-five years, to get it down to the size where we can drown it in the bathtub.” Congratulations Grover. Americans put their foot in it when they went gaga over Ronald Reagan. Common sense has been on vacation ever since. It doesn’t take a genius to figure out that regulations are vital in controlling the financial industry. Anyone who doesn’t think regulations matter should revisit the Great Depression of 1929.  In 2000 it was plain that Americans had got snake bit with the dumb ass venom when Bush fell short the votes he needed for the presidency, and a partisan Supreme Court appointed him to the acclaim of millions. The steady corporate theft of the nation’s treasury is not going to stop. It’s gone on for too long, and corporate interests are so entrenched in government they can never be pried loose. Americans happily suffer under the delusion that they select their leaders by their votes. Obama took progressives by surprise. They thought they were voting for a man who would begin reversing the worst of the damage the Bush Administration caused. Progressives were shocked when Obama jumped directly into the corporate bed and continued the Bush policies of distributing the nation’s wealth upwards. Obama, despite all his campaign promises to look into the Bush Administration’s criminal behavior, must have plum forgot them promises. The fat lady sang “stick a fork in it, it’s done” to the tune of the National Anthem. Nancy Pelosi personifies the contemporary liberal democrat. She is a tepid, middle of the road creature, who constantly holds a finger aloft to check the direction of the political wind. She could not make an independent decision if her life depended on it. No. She’d have to consult her campaign contributors from down on K Street before tying her shoe. She knows about the scary stick and she ain’t gonna do nothing that’ll get her poked. Ditto, Harry Reid. Congress is nothing more than a consortium of like minded opportunists whose major concern is making sure no one rocks the boat. If the Founding Fathers could attend one session of Congress they’d die all over again.  Americans have been involved in a slow motion Civil War. They didn’t know they were supposed to fight, and wouldn’t have known who to fight if they had known. Hell! They didn’t even know they were in a war!  The winners of the war live in gated communities where private police forces keep the riff raff out. The riff raff is all Americans who can’t join the club that requires its members to be part of the .001% of the richest Americans. The rich folk manipulated Americans with their media lies and distractions, and millions of Americans took the bait and ran. Limbaugh’s Ditto Head audiences gaze at the fat man with expressions identical to the ones worn by insects just before they fly into the UV light. ZZZZZZZZZZZZzzzzzzzzzzzzzzap!  The republicans are fond of saying about their constituency, “never underestimate the stupidity of the American people.”   
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Jon Faulkner is a licensed Master Mariner. He has long considered the conservative republican mindset a form of mental illness. He lives in northern Maine.
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