Speak what you think now in hard words, and to-morrow speak what to-morrow thinks in hard words again, though it contradict every thing you said to-day. — ‘Ah, so you shall be sure to be misunderstood.’ — Is it so bad, then, to be misunderstood?~ Ralph Waldo Emerson
As doubt is my constant companion, this day’s diary is an attempt to see my notion of the validity of progressive support for Ron Paul, killed dead…
The 2008 landslide that brought Democrat majorities to Congress, and it’s backlash in 2010, speak to the total dissociation from, and rejection of, a failed two Party government by the voters. This voter behavior screams “No to the Cerberus status quo”.
As a libertarian socialist, I recognize that Governments become easily captive to the whims of unrestrained elite interests and that ours no longer functions as representative of the will of the people. What we have is not a functioning Government, but a complex Cabal of bipartisan politicians and Corporatism working in concert to sacrifice the American middle class on the altar of a crumbling Empire (their current pace of wealth extraction is unprecedented.) It’s actions, prescriptions and policies are not designed to put a halt to the destruction of democracy, instead, they aim to further the establishment of Plutocratic Corporatist Tyranny.
It should not be difficult to agree that Ayn Rand’s Straussian/Darwinist/ Monarchist conception of utopia are deeply offensive. But let us also discontinue deluding ourselves that our ‘democratic’ status quo represents something substantially different from a bipartisan, concerted effort to make [her] elitist utopia our reality, albeit a much disguised one.
The question that forces itself into the fore, is whether the people will continue wallowing in their partisan certainties, while their Reps help usher in a new era, a new World Order, where 95% of it’s citizens are reduced to living in a toll-booth (fees and taxes) economy whose sole aim appears to be modeled on neofeudal ideas of debt-peonage, and effectively a transfer of wealth to an ueber wealthy elite of sociopaths. (George Soros included).
Center politics represent the means by which the elites aim to accomplish their Randian objectives. The political, bipartisan center, is where this shadowy, hypnotic dance macabre is being performed for mass consumption of a brainwashed public. The power and efficiency of the center, as ushered in by Bubba Clinton, may well require the formation of a populist cross partisan center, as an antidote to the deadly scourge of‘clintonitis’. Without a populist [center] union we all will merely be sacrificed as pawns on their Grand Chessboard (progressives numbers are just not there, so shed the labels and hang on to ideas.) Hang together, or be hanged separately is as true today as it was then.
The one prevailing (petty and petulant, imo.) argument against the bulk of undeniably positive outcomes of a Ron Paul candidacy, is his belief in free ‘unregulated’ markets. On the face of it, proposed in a vacuum, and set against Atlas Shrugged, that notion is instantly counter intuitive to progressives. But, as the above insinuates, we’re already deeply mired in Galt’s utopia as is.
Moreover, the notion of regulated markets is – as has been made amply evident with TBTF Banks, and the rest of the FIRE sector – a cruel hoax. (Not having been able to find his explicit position on Corporate Personhood, I am inclined to rely on his avowed adherence to strict constitutionalist principles that he rejects it.) Paul’s unregulated markets would thus be guided the one principle at it’s core that in comparison to the current status quo, is unquestionably superior – the rejection of the corrupting existence of Corporate Personhood which embodies everything that the majority of the citizenry finds objectionable. As such, it would be far less Darwinian than what we have on offer now. In Ron’s free market universe, corporate criminality would also mean corporate death by the hand of the market, or by law – he’s not, as best as I can figure, favoring indemnifying Corporations from criminal negligence. The idea of a totally laissez faire free market structure is the projection of the ill informed upon the PTB (Rep/Dem) created caricature of the man.
He’s neither, to the best of my knowledge, against public education or universal healthcare. What he objects to is fiat decrees emanating from a central government, detached from localities, that would impose it’s corrupt, one size fits all systems on individual States (Arne Duncan, TheHCR fiasco). The Oxford economist Ha-Joon Chung debunks that one on a macro scale, implying that blanket prescriptions of the IMF/World Bank consortium, are detrimental, and ought to be rejected by governments of developing countries whose economies and people would otherwise suffer when subjected to their implementation. (And, that’s even without mentioning the fact that the US rejects applying the same IMF’s Washington Consensus remedies to itself.)
His views on markets would allow for individual States and their citizenry to devise their own systems of health care and education, reflecting the desires of each State’s voters (States as laboratories of democracy) . YouTube – 23 Things They Don't Tell You About Capitalism
Here then, from a previous diary, is a ‘platform’ that a Ron Paul progressive candidacy would stand and fight for:
Stop all Wars, all of the unconscionable killing
Cut Defense budget 75%
Dismantle Homeland Security, CIA, and all attendant police state organs
Shred the Patriot Act
Extinguish Corporate Personhood
Dismantle the FED
Move Bankers from Penthouse to Penitentiary
Investigate all Fraud wherever it may lead
Get a chance to prosecute war crimes
Shut down Guantanamo
Resuscitate Habeas corpus
Stop enabling Israel’s Human Rights abuses
Get rid of DADT
Allow same sex marriage
If we were to adduce to the voters self interested motives, and simultaneously divest this ‘platform’ from any association to Ron Paul. It would likely garner the support of members of:
The Anti War movement, Civil Libertarians, broad swath of progressives, the LGBT community incl. (Log Cabin Reps.), most of the independents, and of course supporters of Ron Paul.
Last, but not least: forget the Ron Paul name (identity politics are a distraction), and instead concentrate on ideas, issues of importance and building bridges to win the battle we are currently badly losing! Purity tests and closed minds in the face of this enemy, are surely, statistically, not going to get us there…
If anyone can point me to a more progressive platform that could aggregate required votes to win against the Plutocracy, don’t be shy. And if you think that this may broaden an otherwise tribally limiting progressive scope of discussion – seeking positive outcomes rather than reinforcement of hobbling tribalism – keep it alive by recommending it.
“I tend to abhor movement politics, cringe at the faux certainty of those good team players so quick to shut down debate – and sometimes, every now and then, envy the certainty of these movements and their followers.” –E.D.Kaine To Doubt With Conviction – The Daily Dish | By Andrew Sullivan