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America The Failed State


#1

America The Failed State

Chris Hedges

TORONTO — Our “corporate coup d’état in slow motion,” as the writer John Ralston Saul calls it, has opened a Pandora’s box of evils that is transforming America into a failed state. The “unholy trinity of corruption, impunity and violence,” he said, can no longer be checked. The ruling elites abjectly serve corporate power to exploit and impoverish the citizenry. Democratic institutions, including the courts, are mechanisms of corporate repression. Financial fraud and corporate crime are carried out with impunity.


#2

We know this Chris. Now is the time to focus your inestimable journalistic and activist powers on organizing for power. Thank You for All That You Do.


#3

Yes, but the “We” are too small in number, hence TJ’s “call to arms” in the organizing sense. Our choir here at CD sings a good melody with nice and rich harmonies as complements, yet the hall in which we need to fill with our voices is vast. How to [p]reach beyond the choir, that is our challenge, particularly when our message is one of work to be done rather than baubles to distract. Sisyphus, your time is now.


#4

The time is always NOW, for the immortal Sysyphus and everybody else!


#5

Hey, here’s a “good” one. A southener called into C Span last week, and said that g-d wrote our constitution! What was he smoking??? Pretty scary that people ( ignorant) believe this.


#6

Dylan’s WITH GOD ON OUR SIDE, first performed by Joan Baez, was spot on. “God” provides fascist Murkins a pre-baked excuse for everything.

Trump’s previous tariffs on Canadian lumber have already driven the cost of lumber in the US up 25 to 30%. The more recent tariffs will drive even higher costs on many products.


#7

Our country’s governance is dysfunctional. The reason for the dysfunction and the cure are staring us directly in the face. The problem is too much money in politics and the cure is to change Congress. Only we voters can affect the needed change and that is by getting rid of any congressmen or candidate that takes special interest money.

The most important question this midterm has got to be “do you take special interest money?”. If we could make this a single issue election on the subject of election reform we could regain control of what is supposed to be our republic. Without true election reform our future will be nothing but politics as usual.

The fundamental problems we have as a community are not being addressed. We have a Congress that simply does not have our best interests at heart in their legislative actions. Our governing system is one of legislation for sale. Only 6 of the 535 members of Congress do not take special interest money. We have had at least four decades of congressional candidates seeking special interest money, for TV ads, and sellings their souls to get it. The end result is 529 legislators doing the bidding of the 1% and the corporate and financial industries, while ignoring the needs and wants of the American People.

In most western democracies the taking of special interest money (also called bribery) by those in or seeking office lands them in jail. Here our Congress, backed by a politicized Supreme Court, has not only made the practise legal but has opened control of our electoral system to essentially unlimited amounts of money. This allows those who exercise their political influence thru our elected officials to control governmental processes in perpetuity. Money buys votes!

As sick, frustrating, and pervasive as the present rigged system is; it has an Achilles heel: That is that our elected representatives must stand for reelection every 2 or 6 years. If we would judge them on whether or not they take special interest money and favor a complete rewrite of election law we would have a Congress with a completely different set of values. This should be the overriding criterion for our votes in this year’s midterm election. It is a simple, straight forward question: “do you take special interest money”?

Reelection rates for Congressional incumbents is historically in the 90+% range despite their historic approval ratings being below 60% and currently around 17%. We voters need to somehow get past this disconnect. Any Congressman or candidate that takes special interest money is simply not worthy of our votes. We need to act accordingly. We need a movement to: CHANGE CONGRESS.


#8

The original purpose of food stamps was to subsidize farmers who couldn’t sell their goods at market. Give the surplus to the poor. Removing food stamps (snap) from the farm bill should cause us all to want a suicide watch for all farmers.


#9

This is what concerns me–the fact that our people have so purposefully been divided and how relatively easy it was to do. I am not a conspiracy nut. I read and research to dig deep to find out the what, why, and how behind the seemingly unconnected events tweeting from the WH and lied about from the press secʻy office and podium. Everyone knows itʻs about the money and thereʻs multiple billions being made. There is a plan that has been in effect funded by Mercer, the Kochs and others to secure all branches of the government; and theyʻve succeeded. Here is the link to a long article that contains all the proof you need to connect the dots and discover for yourself the who, what, why, and how–the when has already happened. Sorry as a new user I cannot post a link so just google the title: Meet the Economist Behind the One Percent’s Stealth Takeover of America.


#10

Overproduction does far more then just distort economies wherein the price of a good on this thing called “the Free Market” leads to reduced income for the grower and thus fuels yet more production.

The excess food not only thrown away , but the ENVIRONMENT is subjected to more and more pesticides and chemicals in some lame attpemt to increase yield. Farmers put ever more land into production draining sloughs or pushing down brush so as to increase the amount of land under cultivation.

This fuels a decline in other species , plant and animal AND leads to things like BGH being injected into cattle to increase Milk output. (BGH is banned in Canada because of health concerns). Allow the US to export milk to Canada and we get BGH in our milk supply. Increased pesticides and herbicides and so on fuels higher health care costs down the road , none of which are factored in to the cost of production.

I see supply side marketing as one of the few sane choices left us when it comes to raising our food , but because it cuts industry profits , sanity is not to be allowed. Currently in Canada , supply side marketing is used for only a handful of products such as eggs and dairy. Where it not used (in things like beef) you see those factory farms as you do acorss the USA all a detriment to the food supply.


#11

Get rid of the US “democracy” and replace it with a dictatorship of all Americans; becoming, thus salt or light to the world.

One huge problem: Democrats [all 90% to 98% of all Americans] will not ever allow it.


#12

It would need to be a BENEVOLENT “dictatorship” and I don’t know anybody other than myself who could be a benevolent dictator.


#13

The influence of money in politics can be measured by TV & radio advertisement. The largest sponsor of “media control” is automobile-related business interests - manufacturers, sales, insurance, maintenance and repairs. Petroleum companies no longer advertise their automobile-related product as they did decades ago, but this can be attributed to car ads no longer highlighting fuel economy. The Big 3 American car makers no longer produce economy cars at all. The only petroleum ads aired are the greenwash sort meant to placate any concern for public health and downplay the wars for oil they have sponsored over the last century. The Koch Bros, Warren Buffett and their ilk representing the petroleum industry pay to deceitfully misinform and keep the public clueless on these issues.

That said, of course there are many other monopolist corporate interests which control congress, but the rise of genuine local businesses depends upon their serving customer markets that are local and regional rather than global, and in the process require the least amount of travel, transport and fuel/energy.


#14

I’m one of the lucky ones. I’m 71 now and probably won’t be around when the shit REALLY hits the fan big time. It’s a real shame, I saw the US when it was literally at the top of the world through the 50’s, 60’s & 70’s. Things then were really getting better (albeit somewhat slow) and look where we are now, massive school shootings, unheard of suicide rates, every fucking body carrying a gun, shitty education system that’s getting worse, almost non-existent social safety nets and I could go on for another 1000 words. We’re done, fucked.


#15

I listen to C span every morning JUST for the call ins. It’s pretty funny, but also pretty fucking sick & sad too.


#16

We are not done Patricia. We are not fucked.

We simply have a Dumb Fuck in the White House that we must throw out with the rest of the trash he’s brought with him.

We need a Dominant Voice.

A voice to Organize us.

It’s not coming from the Democrats, so we must support a party committed to providing a direction away from where the Duopoly wants to take us.

The Green Party has been willing to be that voice.

It will require commitment and money.

It won’t come from the corporations.

It must come from us.

Seek and you shall find.


#17

Overproduction meant to serve a larger market, increases the amount of fuel for transport. The greater mass production reduces related costs, especially with wage-slave labor and mechanization, but then becomes dependent upon more fuel and dangerously more vulnerable to any disruption of fuel supply. To deal with global warming, fuel/energy use must decrease.


#18

Bobba,

Perhaps this is where our educational system fails us. Too few Understand the Why of democracy, what it is supposed to accomplish, what it is supposed to prevent, how to respond as it steps outside its purpose, its function. Too few think philosophically about Humanity, and what’s good for us. Too few of us understand how life works --and our place within it.

Another line of thought: Democracy may not work for an immense group of people.
In a small town, where the community knows someone running for mayor since they were a child, where there is an actual history, not just a PR slogan, people know who they’re voting for. The candidate knows the people they represent, what they need, what they want. The town can hold their mayor accountable, as they meet in line at the grocery.

Distance in relationships (especially political relationships) is a problem. We’ve designed that problem right into our democracy of 325 million.


#19

Who admires a person that promises to pull back on war and not only didn’t but increased the indiscriminate drone bombings? That didn’t hold anyone accountable for the massive fraud which hurt the entire world’s economy? Who not only didn’t reward whistle blowers for revealing government crimes but prosecuted them!? Someone who didn’t do a damn thing for the working class when he had full control of Washington? And a guy who didn’t fight (his lasting legacy) and let a pos like McConnell roll right over him for that crucial Supreme Court pick.

This is how bad it’s gotten. Trump is such a degenerate that supposedly intelligent people like Saul are complimenting Obama - a failed president - because of his likability and oratory skills.


#20

It’s wortth noting that the current number of representatives (435 in the House + 100 in the Senate) was set following the Census of 1910, when US population was about one-third of what it is now. Doesn’t it seem overdue for a recalculation?