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Democrats In Sheep's Clothing

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Last year Democrats romped home in a sea of blue promising the moon and stars and vowing to end the cycle of business as usual in Washington. With almost messianic reverence they promised to transform the way that the Beltway crowd did business while sticking it to Mr. Bush as payback for his imperial presidency. America did not hold its breadth since what Democrats say and what Democrats do is almost always at variance with each other. It’s not that people can’t trust them but unlike Republicans they are prone to compromise and accommodation simply to get along.

The first 100 days (or was it hours?) in office have long gone and apart from some great sound-bites, tough talk, and a slew of public hearings that demonstrated some very neat demagogy what have we to show for it? Give us time they say; we’re working on it (whatever “it” is) they say; and its not going to be easy to deal with the White House they acknowledge. Meanwhile we witness the daily antics of people who promised much and have delivered little to date.

Of course, the side show of the upcoming 2008 presidential elections and the jockeying for positions has focused the American public away from the fact that a trusting John Public has only sweet talk to show for his efforts. Americans are now singing the Democratic blues and just as the Bush Administration we’ve arrived at a place that forces us to look to some salvation – next year.

So now all our attention is to get caught up in the cawing over Hillary Rodham Clinton for president.  A review of her tenure in the US Senate and the sparse resources that she brought to New York City points to a politician without an agenda. Don’t even mention Black Brooklyn – they got nothing, nada, zilch for their support, love and admiration of Senator Clinton. That’s because Brooklynites are still in a love-daze with her husband who was bad for Black people (remember the draconian immigration laws passed after Tim McVeigh killed 168 people in Oklahoma?) but they are  hoping that Hillary will be “just like him.”

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And if you think that this is a cynical view let us (Black people) support Black (or brown depending on your racial taste) Obama who does not identify with Black people as Black people keep identifying with him.  As a people Blacks are an astounding race. After years of oppression Black people want to belong so badly that they consistently hitch their political stars to individuals who are bad for them as a people. While Obama favors surgical air strikes against Iran and a phased redeployment of troops in Iraq “sometime in 2007,” (that did not pan out) Senator Clinton opposes flag burning while now claiming that she opposes torture because she supported it when she did not have all the facts of the Iraq war.

Neat. Liberalism is a so cool. Sound bites, raising big money, obscene levels of money to purchase the presidency are no concern of the ordinary American voter. To oppose such open corruption of the presidency is, well, unpatriotic. Remember, we’re at war and some of our civil liberties must be curtailed because of “national security.” Fiddlesticks! Maybe we should get down to the business of letting some tired old white men and a few women shift the debate to the loss of habitat for the lovable polar bears. Heck, I can make more sense of Global Warming that how Democrats are shimming in Washington.

Yep. The lobbyists are making hay while the sun shines as we get thankful for one thing that the Democrats can point to have done since they took control of the House of Representatives – raising the minimum wage. We’re to be thankful for the $7.25 an hour that will boost the earnings of 50 million Americans to a whopping $15,080 a year before taxes. Great! But there’s still Obama, and McCain and Clinton and Richardson….

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So what has changed? More blue, less red. Hooray! Who cares? Here come the Republicrats in sheep’s clothing. After saying that they have a progressive people’s agenda and how we’re going to take back America it’s now abundantly clear who got taken. Watch the money trail in the match up to the presidential elections – Hillary $50 million or is it $60 million, Obama $35 million, Edwards $17 million and McCain $11 million. Was it “we the little people” who gave these large sums? Nah. But that’s democracy – I give a dollar, you give a $1,000.

It was Benito Mussolini the dead former dictator of Italy during the Second World War who said that fascism (a bad word amongst liberals and Democrats from the Blue States) was nothing more than a partnership between government and corporations. So there you have it America voted for a bunch of Blue Democrats who said the right things but skipped the light fandango with corporate America the moment they set up shop in Washington. We were left doing the crude political polka to an accordion in need of tuning.

The sad point here is that the betrayal of the public trust is almost always expected by “we the people.” It’s a silly dance of “I-vote-for-you-and-you-help-us.” Like the platitudes whispered during a particularly torrid session of lovemaking these promises are, to put it decently, simply “sex talk” (you can substitute another more colorful four letter word for more impact). Or we can embrace the Alice-in-Wonderland style politics and pretend to be the Mad Hatter or the sleeping Dormouse.

Oh shucks, this thing is so confusing. We go to the polls, vote, trust people and when they get to Washington they immediately go to bed with the lobbyists and corporate money bags. That’s whorish but who cares? After all they do look good doing it. So in the end we’ll get a bunch of people wearing designer clothes nursing sociopathic tendencies underneath those customized smiles, the end-result of endless facelifts, while genocide continues in Darfur and a whole generation of young people are slaughtered, maimed and injured in Iraq. Swell.

Yeah, the Democrats keep saying that they want to end the war in Iraq and want to hold Mr. Bush and Company accountable for the greatest foreign policy blunder in American history. But judging from those presidential wannabes it’s confusing especially when you hear things like “I oppose the war, but support our troops.” What? support them to get blown to smithereens by some nasty piece of ordnance? But let’s do it with panache and flair. While Democrats sing their praises for having beaten the GOP this time around we poor sods are supposed to celebrate the rise to power of a sweeter, kinder, gentler oligarchy.

There has been a monumental dumbing down of American activism in the face of two badly prosecuted wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. The American public, at the risk of being labeled a chronic cynic, have become so tuned out to the antics of the political class and its embellishments that even normally revolting events like Darfur remain in the realm of insensitive collective oblivion. But don’t feel bad America unleashed a barrage of bombs and bullets on Afghanistan as payback for 9-11 and the laughable irony today is that there is very little to show for all that “shock and awe.” There’s no Osama bin Laden and Afghanistan is back in the hands of murderous warlords who ply the profitable opium trade.

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But you can’t always plan just how capitalism will go, especially in a god-forsaken country like Afghanistan. And what about the 14 military bases America is constructing in Iraq and the fact that the Democrats are conspicuously mum on this issue? Not to worry. For all the talk about bringing the troops home it would be absurd and stupid to spend so much money to build these military bases and then just pack up and go home. But stranger things have happened. After all this is America.

And what about us Democrats bleating about the good ole Bill Clinton days in the White House and the pathetic spectacle of pot-bellied Americans swigging beer and eating corn chips before the boob tube being fed a steady diet of celebrity entertainment called news? The photo of a smiling Hillary Clinton graces the TV screen and viewers start reliving the “great Clinton Days.” Was this not the same president who killed over 100,000 textile jobs in the West Indies due to NAFTA, continuously bombed Iraq and doggedly imposed sanctions on that poor, relatively helpless country under the supine cover of the United Nations that ultimately cost the lives of 350,000 innocent children?

So now we come to the most sensitive issue facing our newly minted Democrats on Capital Hill – Israel and the Palestinians. While Democrats attack George Bush for his bumbling of the Iraq war they continue to be silent on the illegal occupation and annexation of Palestine. Democrats decry the Bush Administration’s torture program and its suspension of habeas corpus through the Military Commission Act while saying absolutely nothing about Israel’s policy of long-term detention of Palestinians without charge or trial under its “Administrative Detention” program.

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MICHAEL DERK ROBERTS Small Business Consultant, Editor, and Social Media & Communications Expert, New York Over the past 20 years I've been a top SMALL BUSINESS CONSULTANT and POLITICAL CAMPAIGN STRATEGIST in Brooklyn, New York, running (more...)
 

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