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The 800 Pound Gorilla in The Living Room

By   Follow Me on Twitter     Message Timothy Gatto       (Page 1 of 1 pages)     Permalink    (# of views)   1 comment

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This weekend I found myself watching the Sunday political talk shows with a certain amount of detachment. I saw Senator Evan Bayh who is described in his official biography as "having grown up on a farm, he knows what it's like to be a farmer and to work for a living". Really? Wasn't his father Senator Birch Bayh who spent decades in the Senate? Since when has a Senator's son known what it's like to "work" for a living? I hate to be so depreciating and mean, but hey, it's the truth. If a Senator's son needed something, or wanted something, would you say no? You might, but I'd bet money you would really think about it. He looked so Presidential telling George Stephanopolis that he knew he was an underdog, that many people don't know him, Why is that? Has he done anything notable? Has he crafted any good legislation? Has he stood firm on any unpopular issues? He compared himself to David and Goliath when George matched him up against Hillary Clinton or Barrack Obama. He then smiled earnestly and said "We all know who won that, don't we?" Yeah, right. So what's his plan? Is he bringing a slingshot to the next session of Congress? You know he looks like a candidate. He has this plastic persona that people get when they throw their hat in the ring. I guess politics is a family business. We're seeing more and more of that these days. Political dynasties. Families that know how the game is played, that know what the corporations and special interests with deep pockets want, and who the "go-to" guys (or girl) is. He is forming an "exploratory committee" to "test the waters". That is just another name for assessing how much money they will need and how many of these Corporations and special interest PAC's will support him for his campaign financing. It has absolutely nothing to do with whether people like him or not, that can come later. The money comes first.

I watched the President's Intelligence Advisor David Hadley speak to Bob Schieffer. He said that the outlook on Iraq depends on what kind of "aperture" you are looking through. I thought that was a really good phrase, and I told my wife I thought it was. A little later my wife said that she said that if the administration was looking through an aperture, then it was attached to a kaleidoscope. I thought that was not only funny, but also appropriate. The administration doesn't have a clue of what it's doing in Iraq. They are all pinning their hopes on James Baker to pull them out of this. Frankly, I don't thing that they are going to say anything or propose anything that will save this administration from going down in the history books as the most inept administration that this nation ever had. He not only has mired us in Iraq without a strategy to win or to exit, but he has managed to allow outsourcing almost every kind of industry to foreign shores, and to practically let The Peoples Republic of China finance the national debt.

Later on, in the evening after dinner, I was watching television and seeing the different commercials they bring out during the Christmas season. I saw the happy faces and sentimental commercials designed to get consumers excited about going into more consumer debt and blame it on "The Holidays". Every single one of the commercials were outright attempts to get you to spend. The government wants you to spend; the local merchants want you to spend, hell, even the lowest factory worker in China wants you to spend. After it's all over, there will be second mortgage and debt consolidation "advisors" that will make the after-Christmas money. This Christmas I'm not spending a dime more than I usually do. I refuse to get caught up in this consumer nightmare they call Christmas. It killed me last year when Bill O'Rielly talked about that Christmas crap. Who really care? Do you think O'Rielly really cares? Call it Happy Holidays, Merry Christmas, X-mas. Or "Big Retail Day"" which it really is. Jesus wasn't born on December 25th. That was a Roman festival day Romans turned into Christmas so that the population wouldn't lose a holiday. Still, if you want to believe it's Jesus' birthday, go right ahead, we don't really know when he was born, so if you want to use December 25th, it's just as good as any other day.

I got off track there, I didn't mean to go on about Christmas. I meant to wonder aloud about how many times I've spent Christmas overseas in the Army and how many Christmases I've thought about the soldiers that are overseas on Christmas, in a combat zone. In my 56 years there have been far too many of them. I spent over eight or nine overseas. This brought me to the realization that the human race is probably the worse thing that ever happened to this planet. We have only been around for a brief time compared to the age of our planet, and in that brief moment of time, we have managed to almost destroy it. I read about the bachelor party over the weekend and how the groom-to-be backed into a police car in New Your and two policemen got out of their car and managed to shoot the man dead, and expend 50 rounds in the process. The problem in Darfur goes on and most of the people in this country don't even know where or what Darfur is, but they can tell you that Brittany Spears filed for divorce. We still put up with a President that believes Global Warming doesn't exist.

So why do I even bother to write about my opinions in the first place? Maybe because if I can convince enough people by saying the same things over and over again, maybe they will actually think about what I've been saying. When I try to tell Americans about Corporatism instead of thinking about retail sales and competition, they will see how corporations manipulate what our elected officials vote on, and start to understand why. Maybe if I can get people to log onto Opensecrets.org and in the process, they see who's financing our politicians they will start to "get it".

I don't think Americans are stupid, I think that the people who want to manipulate the population are leading them down a dangerous path. The people are painted a picture that is bright and sunny, full of hope and promise. The reason for that is to keep the status quo and keep them spending, which in turn, keeps the economy floating. These corporations don't want things changed. An educated consumer is a pain in the ass. The American Medical Association for example, is an organization that is supposed to look out for the health of people, right? Understand that the American Medical Association is an association of medical people, they are not primarily looking out for your best interests, and they are looking out for theirs. That's why they give so much money to the Republicans. Republicans are dead set against National Heath care. You will find almost every health organization, almost every pharmaceutical company, almost every medical equipment provider, almost every national chain of drugstore, almost any entity involved with health care giving predominantly to the Republicans. If you believe that you will ever see a national or single-payer health care system in this country in your lifetime, unless everyone wakes up and smells the coffee, you are dreaming. Look what happened to Hillary Clinton when she was a novice in Washington DC. She almost ruined any hopes of a political career, and almost took her husband down with her. We spend more on it than any nation on Earth and yet we are ranked 33rd on the planet when it comes to healthcare.

That is just one example. There are many more, Don't you believe that U.S. scientists could have come up with a hybrid automobile years ago? Why was it the Japanese that made the technology practical? Do you believe that the oil companies had anything to do with that? I copied China's Peoples Daily editorial last year and put it on my blog "Liberalpro". The Chinese said that if the United States stopped buying oil for one week from the Middle East, and used it's oil reserves, that oil would fall below $40.00 a barrel. I believe it. Do you think that our government would ever do it, and why? Look around you. Corporatism doesn't mean that all Americans care for is retail items. It doesn't have a thing to do with capitalism. It isn't the opposite of communism, in fact it's much worse than communism. Corporatism is when huge corporations finance people in their election bids, and by that I am including professional and business associations. The multi-million dollar Congressional and Senate races and the billion dollar Presidential races could not be done without corporate money. Pull the corporate money out of politics and we would have a representative democracy. I believe that many of our Congressman and Senators would welcome it. THE PROBLEM IS WHO IS GOING TO PROPOSE IT AND PUT THEMSELVES OUT ON A POLITICAL LIMB? Would you if you were in office? Would you bite the hand that feeds you? If it didn't pass would you be able to defeat your political rivals without that corporate money?

These are the things that I think about all the time. The answer to 75% (that's a guess) of our nation's biggest problems is getting the people in government back to being the representatives of the people, not the corporations. Doing right for people. Fighting global warming, national healthcare, no more subsidies and tax breaks to oil companies that have billion dollar profits. No more no-bid contracts to Haliburton. No more turning a blind eye to migrant farm workers who are not on a visitors work visa and make less than minimum wage while they tax our overburdened social systems. No more $100.00 hammers for government workers. Whistleblower protection for reporting waste, fraud and abuse in government contacts. These things can happen. Changing the campaign finance laws is a doable thing and you, as an American citizen will see remarkable results immediately. Just think about it. We could have campaigns financed by the taxpayer, by using debates and less political commercials. It would allow people that are not connected to big money to run for office. It would stop the domination of the two political parties. It would stop our representatives from being obligated to Corporate and special interest donors. It would give the government back to the people.

This is the 800 pound gorilla nobody wants to mention.

 

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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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