That to secure these rights, governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed. That whenever any form of government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the right of the people to alter or abolish it, and to institute new government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their safety and happiness.
Preamble to the Declaration of Independence
"An army of principles can penetrate where an army of soldiers cannot."
Thomas Paine (Revolutionary)
I was recently in Cuba to attend a Human Right's conference. Cuba is a lovely country (with many problems still) that will be celebrating 50 years of Revolution on January 1st of 2009.
Cuba is struggling economically because there are limits to what a tiny island nation can do, especially when the mightiest nation on this planet sits menacingly to the north and has maintained a blockade against trade and travel for many decades. The nation of Cuba is struggling economically, but since they have been able to survive (not quite thrive) after all this time gives the citizens of Cuba a rightful pride and sense of unity that is not so apparent in The Empire that has tried to crush them.
The Revolution led by the Castro brothers, Che Guevara and many other Cuban heroes overthrew the US puppet government in Havana led by US proxy General Fulgencio Batista. The puppet government was installed, in the US way, to protect US business interests in Cuba over the impoverished Cuban people. At the time of the Revolution 75% of Cuba's arable land was owned by US agri-businesses. The Cuban-elite took hundreds of millions of dollars of wealth from the country when they fled along with Batista. The Revolution to Cubans not only means independence, but it means literacy, education, healthcare, housing and, like I mentioned before, a great sense of pride.
Traveling back from Cuba, I was sitting on the cramped plane next to a Bay Area elderly Chinese woman who was returning from a luxury cruise to the Bahamas who asked me: "Why did you choose Cuba to have a Human Right's Conference when their record on Human Right's is not transparent?" Well, first of all, that is not entirely true, but secondly, I asked her if we should have had the conference in the US, when our record on Human Right's is atrocious. It is hard to criticize one nation when your own country is operating a medieval style torture prison on that country's soil.
The Revolution did not choose to isolate itself from the US; the US is the one who hypocritically has full relations with Communist China and Communist Vietnam, but not with one of our neighbors. Cuba has full and friendly diplomatic relations with over 180 countries, the US and Israel being the most glaring exceptions. Cuba has relations with Canada, Great Britain, Switzerland, Germany, Italy, France and many other first world nations that the US also enjoys full diplomatic relations with---the embargo or blockade begin to make less and less sense when our allies do not join in the anti-Cuban rhetoric of our Robber class.
The Cuban Revolution is fresh and new in relation to the US Revolution against the British that began over 232 years ago and the British were defeated in 1781, only to return 31 years later to try and reclaim what they had lost. 50 years into the American Revolution, our nation was being divided by the stain of immoral African slavery and today, we are being divided by our Robber class who are steadily impoverishing the rest of us to effectively destroy the middle-class and put us all into the very hard working-poor class. The wars of aggression that the US has been waging for 60 years (constantly and covertly in Latin America) have contributed to the strength of the Robber class and the weakness of our economy and standing around the world.
Despite an Obama victory, many people in our nation are fed up to nearly bursting with empty rhetoric and change only for the worse. Obama will be a successful President if you belong to the Robber class, but there are millions of us who know that the Robber class only exists to perpetuate its sick-self and will stop at nothing until it has reduced the US to a 3rd world nation populated by citizens who have X-Boxes and computers, bought on credit, but no money to pay for the electricity to run them.
The Robber class won't stop until millions more people lose their homes and are put out into the streets. Millions of homes already stand vacant and in disrepair while potential occupants are freezing on the cold streets or in tent cities.
The Robber class won't stop until all unions are busted and those who do have jobs are working for pittances. Why was it so important for Congress to bailout the banksters who are raping our country for millions while Congress and the "Big 3" collude to make sure any bailout of the auto industry insures that workers will be harmed?
In the final death-throes of our Empire and the eventual total collapse of our economy, who will be the winners and who will be the losers? Will we restructure in the way Cuba did? Will our "leaders" make sure that every American is educated, housed and taken care of medically? Or will the Robber class continue to function in the way they always have? In their protected mansions under heavy guard living in the style they have been accustomed to, while we, their complacent financiers suffer unspeakable hardship?
It is up to us. We are the sovereigns in this country. Will we continue to dress in pink, sing cutesy songs and drop frilly pink banners off of buildings hoping that our pink energy will waft up to the Robbers and overcome them with integrity, or will we rediscover our Revolutionary roots and start demanding a more equitable redistribution of the wealth and resources (and not just here in the US).
The Declaration of Independence also says that EVERYONE is created equal with certain "inalienable" rights: The right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness." These rights are "inalienable" for everyone, not just for The Empire's Robber class. Rights should not pit one human against another or rob most people of their prosperity and security to give an overabundance to so few.