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OpEdNews Op Eds    H2'ed 6/5/17

Whack A Mole Activism

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Why is it in terms of progressive reform the country is going backwards?

Last time I checked, citizens were by very sizable majorities for practically all of the things progressive activists actively promote.

I've cited these statistics repeatedly but they're worth looking at again:

75% of Americans want a federal minimum wage of $12.50 per hour.
63% of Americans want a federal minimum wage of $15.00 per hour.
75% of voters want fair trade agreements protecting jobs, workers, the environment.
76% of voters want a cut back on military spending.
76% of voters want the U.S. completely out of Afghanistan.
79% of voters want no reductions in Social Security, 70% support expanding it.
79% of voters want no reductions in Medicare.
80% of voters oppose the "Citizens United" U.S. Supreme Court decision.
68% of voters think taxes on the wealthy should be increased.
71% of voters support massive infrastructure renewal.
65% of voters want laws to combat climate change.
62% of voters want tuition free public colleges and universities.
74% of American voters are for ending oil industry subsidies.

We could probably add a few more to the list but this offers us the necessary perspective.

A great deal of energy and time by dedicated activists continues to be devoted to these and many other worthy causes: protecting a woman's right to choose; respecting human rights, especially those of immigrants and vilified minorities like Muslims; protecting the quality of air and water, stopping the wanton destruction of the environment; reining in abuses in the workplace; reducing police violence; on and on, all initiatives reflecting the best values and instincts of people who believe America is for all Americans, not just a privileged few.

Yet, all of these are constantly under assault.

This should come as no shock. There has always been a tiny aristocratic elite in our nation which views itself -- not hard-working everyday citizens -- as the true engine of our wealth and greatness as a country. Reacting to both the reforms of the 1930s under FDR, and the hard-won gains in civil and human rights in the 1960s and 1970s, these elitists set about reversing these populist measures with a comprehensive, long-range strategy of taking over the governing institutions at all levels and in every branch of government, then subsequently imposing their own selfish, self-serving agenda on the rest of us.

What we see now is their spectacular success. The Republicans -- who most thoroughly and with ideological purity represent the interests of this ruling elite, though over the past two-and-a-half decades or more, the Democrats have been scrambling to align themselves with the ruling class, abandoning their traditional base of union workers and other citizens of the lower and middle classes -- now have the White House, both houses of Congress, a majority of the state legislatures. Even the majority of state governors are Republicans.

They have kicked our progressive asses good!

The reaction by our end of the political spectrum to this highly organized assault on the system of government, which we progressives and the majority of everyday people believe is supposed to serve the interests of all citizens, has been short-sighted and fragmented.

The end product of decades of what we failed to properly assess and address is what I call Whack A Mole activism.

Just like the amusement center Whack A Mole game -- though we hardly find it amusing -- we are constantly challenged to whack at one crisis, while others are poised to quickly follow. There's always another crisis popping up somewhere else.

We haven't even finished fighting in Afghanistan or Iraq, but now we have to fight another war in Syria. While we're fueling the crisis in Syria, we start another one in the Ukraine. As if these weren't enough, we're getting ready to fight Russia, China, North Korea.

We stop the Keystone XL, but five more pipelines get backroom approval. We get ready to challenge them, the Arctic gets opened up again for more drilling. More offshore rigs start popping up everywhere. Leases are being handed out like Halloween candy to explore for gas in our National Parks. Our heads are spinning.

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John Rachel has a B.A. in Philosophy, and has written eight novels and three political non-fiction books. His political articles have appeared at OpEdNews, Russia Insider, The Greanville Post, and other alternative media outlets. Since (more...)

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