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Breaking Through Power: It's Easier Than We Think


#1

Breaking Through Power: It's Easier Than We Think

Ralph Nader

When I was a student at Princeton University I learned from my anthropology studies that the concentration of power in the hands of the few is common to all cultures, societies, nations, tribes, cities, towns, and villages. Even where the thirst for self-governance and democracy is strong (as was the case in New England towns before the American Revolution against King George III) wealthy Tories were there too. In Central and Western Massachusetts, the farmers used the term “the River Gods” to describe the rich merchants using the Connecticut River as a profitable trading route.


#2

One of the most effective ways to screw with the plutocrats and the oligarchy is to demonstrate in large numbers. Physically show up.
Like on November 8th to vote. Or to vote early. Or mail a ballot in.
The oligarchy doesn't cotton to large groups forming. It unnerves them.

Take the time and trouble to vote. Preferably for Jill Stein to keep Hillary's total vote under 50%. Vote against every Republican incumbent who is on the ballot.
Do it today because 1 million people have already voted in Florida.


#3

From The Planetary Report:

PARTISAN POLITICS AND SPACE (or student debt, healthcare, the MIC, etc.)

"Politics being what it is, I believe each party would use space exploration as a weapon. If proposed by Republicans, Democrats would claim it will use resources that could be used for social programs. If proposed by Democrats, the Republicans would claim that it will raise the debt. Therefore, I believe that the use of quiet support and a clear path would be the best approach."
Vince Laurel, Mickleton, NJ

Instead of being bounced around between two political parties, forever entangled, I suggest that we take Vince's advice and ignore them going about our way building a better, safer, healthier society unencumbered by their political ambitions.


#5

So you suggest that we all ignore the elephant (pun intended) in the room?
The object of the exercise is to destroy both major political parties.
Ignoring cancer leads to a slow, sure death.
Ignoring the two major political parties is perhaps the least credible idea one could offer as a way out of our political mess.
Voting every incumbent out of office might just work, however.


#6

Excellent article.

How do we break through power? The usual way is to organize, demand, protest, get maced and knocked on the head, get arrested, go to jail and pay the bail, send a couple of bucks to your senator, etc.

If the media doesn't ignore you and you are able to get some relief, the plutocrats and oligarchs that own the politicians erode it away. Plutocrats and their Machiavellian advisors set up a government to represent them first and foremost and we still call it "democracy".

If its not direct, its not democracy.


#7

The entire Democratic Party is obviously now under the control of the Koch Bros who are
backing Hillary. This is the John Birch Society Koch Family which has been working to
overturn democracy for more than 75 years now. They co-opted the party with the DLC
long ago -- along with other large corporations -- all of whom were represented on the DLC's executive
board All "lower" Democrats come under this pressure by the DNC to raise $$$ every day for the
their next campaign and for the party. I'd rather see Greens gain office.


#8

Protesting and getting arrested today carry added pressures -- and it seems they're
also now threatening the public with strip searches for minor arrests. It looks to me
as though there's a war on protesters, war on truth tellers, war on journalists and
reporters. Actually, violence has taken over the political arena. Violence is the only
way the right wing can rise. That's always been true.


#11

Agree with Ralph and always with Howard Zinn. It's always the same, but yet
this time around it's also very different. NATURE is having its say with Global Warming
which at this point seems to be irreversible. And, in this time the Elite also have control
over our MIC/Intelligence complex and it's obviously being used against the people.
Maybe Stonewalling by Elites comes just before the fall -- if that is true then we see the
evidence in the two candidates for this election, in the levels of corruption of our government
while it continues to attack its oldest enemy the Native American out of greed and fear.
Neither does it seem coincidental that we see increasing attacks on the AA's with deadly
shootings. The attacks this weekend on Julian Assange and WikiLeaks also show us how
frightened our government is of truth - fearful that their corruption may be completely exposed.
NSA spying on the public and the entire world -- threatening it's own people and other nations.
US warmongering all over the world. Obama is working to be able to label our reporters and
journalists as "terrorists." Chelsea Manning is being tortured in our prisons. Snowden will not
be welcomed with a pardon for exposing the crimes of our government.
JFK spoke about SECRECY in 1961 --

President John F. Kennedy speech at the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel on April 27, 1961.
"The President and the Press" before the American Newspaper Publishers Association.
http://www.thepowerhour.com/news3/jfk_speech_transcript.htm


#12

I got stuck on the line about "people marching for economic justice." Please, that so-o-o 1960s. Put another way: We know that not everyone is able to work, and that there aren't jobs for all. What is "economic justice" for them? Another decade of merely calling for jobs? You can't buy a loaf of bread with promises of eventual jobs. You can't get a job once you no longer have a home address, phone, etc.

We can't "break through power" because we are dependent on them. They are corporate America. They are our jobs, our survival.


#13

Funny thing is, middle class liberals seem utterly oblivious to how profoundly we've been divided by our class war, middle class vs. the poor.


#14

Actually it's the 1% versus the 99% just like Occupy Wall Street laid out.
Corporate America has clearly brainwashed many into believing that they provide our jobs.
They do not.
The majority of jobs in America are provided by small businesses who employ less then 50 people.
Without good facts, one cannot make proper decisions.


#15

DH -- as far as I know we have a disappearing middle class.
We are all being made poor.


#17

When all of the individual activist groups come together to show up at protests we will have the power to make changes. Each group having large numbers of members are made much more powerful if they are all showing up at each others protests. Power in numbers is the idea of course. They are all fighting the same source of the injustice anyway. The members or anyone that can't physically protest can help from home, letters, emails, calls and so on.
I can't believe they're not already doing this. The fight is now.


#20

Indeed. I think one thing that voters all across the voting spectrum can agree is that this election has been ugly and disappointing.


#21

Election 2016 has been rigged to sell voters two corporate candidates while pretending that other choices do not exist.


#22

Maybe We The People in order to form a more perfect union (as a grammatical point to raise just for entertainment since SiouxRose is longer here to point out these quibbles, "more perfect" is an absurdity because "perfection" is one of those words like "unique" that aren't supposed to have modifiers) -- maybe we could try it without a president for one four year stretch just to see if we really need one. Maybe we'd do better without one.


#23

Actually reading might add to your knowledge on issues...


#25

"More perfect" means closer to perfect, which indicates that perfection is in the eye of the beholder and the framers of the Constitution were enlightened enough to know that.
Although SiouxRose wouldn't have agreed with you, because for her there was a conspiracy lurking around every corner and only those with perfect grammatical skills were credible, your idea of getting rid of "leaders" has merit.


#26

"More perfect" seems to me to say "better than perfect" but Rsdio Lab had a show called More Perfect" and why not? I looked up "Perfection" in BrainyQuotes and found myself agreeing with Margaret Atwood: "If I waited for perfection... I would never write a word" which might be easier on those who sometimes find my writings troublesome.

I'm still hoping neither candidate gets any votes. Constitutional Crisis -- bring it on.


#27

".....form a more perfect Union" means "better than perfect" to you? Are there people who actually buy into the notion that something can be even better than perfect?
What would better than perfect look like?