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Ending 2018, Seeking True Populism



Joseph O’Shaughnessy

As we race through space in late November 2018, the United States is in great turmoil and some would say in great danger.

The President we elected is pandering to both the Middle Class, poorer than any American Middle class since before the Second World War, and the bigoted, the religiously fanatic, the anti-government, intolerant, thuggish racist groups, and the self-satisfied members of the upper economic ten percent.  The one common characteristic among all these groups is that they care nothing about “Making America Great Again,” which is ironic, but obviously care only about their own personal lives, their antagonisms, and, occasionally, hatreds.

We can never repeat this enough. Nationalism is not Populism. Being popular among the ragged masses is not Populism. True Populism is a government of laws that come directly from the will of the people, acting for the people. Not promises. Legislation. Action. For the people.

Many of the Trump supporters pretend that they can vote for Trump and for those in Congress who support him because he is working for them. Nothing could be further from the truth. But we won’t try to persuade them otherwise. Like the Nazis and Phalangists of old, they will only be persuaded, if ever, when government has become totally authoritarian and they or their sons or daughters or brothers or next door neighbors make the mistake of rebelling against oppression. The sad but logical conclusion of totalitarian government is that many good people, intelligent people, real Americans, will be oppressed, persecuted, impoverished and eventually, after all the judges are selected by the Right Wing, imprisoned.

You see, there is no other alternative to increasing income inequality. Take the example of the people from Central America and Mexico marching towards the United States. They are totally oblivious to American politics. They  see no American news on television, let alone Fox News Channel or MSNBC. They live in their small communities only knowing that they are oppressed. So they march. When they hit a wall, they try to go over it or around it. They are human beings. They will do whatever they must do, go wherever they think they must go to survive.

Today, we learn of the 15,000 people about to lose their jobs in the auto industry so that General Motors can make money by relocating plants in lower wage countries. These people, many of them, will spend months looking for jobs, spending down their savings, some losing their homes before they can sell them to protect their equity. These were all people in the upper Midwest, making decent incomes. How long before they run out of funds? What we they do when there is only the job, like those held by tens of thousands of Walmart or Target or Disney workers, that does not pay the rent or keep a family off of food stamps. Will they protest? Will they, American citizens, be tear gassed?

And what is to say that one day you will not be one of these people? How solvent and valuable is your job compared to that of a United Auto Workers’ job? If unions can no longer protect workers, if jobs can be scrapped at the flick of a ball point pen, and if no good alternatives are available, what is the point of coming to America?” Or more to the point…what is the point of being an American, “making America great again” if jobs are sent to Asia, leaving only lower paying jobs here in the United States?

Who is to blame? Trump? Trump is an ignoramus, a cipher, a boob. He has no idea of economics. He could only cause an economic crisis…and there are some signs that his idiocy is causing big problems already… if he does something. Basically, he has done nothing thus far except give the rich more money (which Republicans have been doing since Reagan) and penalize American farmers and American manufacturers or builders who use steel.

We can blame Trump but, basically, you are to blame. Those of you who listen to Rush Limbaugh and Sean Hannity and Laura Ingraham and Mark Levin and all the paid Right Wing radio commentators who have successfully deluded you into thinking that you still live in a great society. You do not. That is completely wrong. American society is controlled by the “Conservative” Right Wing, basically fewer than a hundred billionaires who control banking, the stock market, global manufacturing, arms manufacture, oil, gas, and a large part of the media.  You have allowed these people to establish organizations of highly paid lackeys who create lies disseminated to the public on a daily basis. Then these groups create other groups that produce lying television commercials about politicians who want to help you, and drown out the truth with their constant, daily, lies.

These organizations have brought about such a total atmosphere of untruth, after years of bombarding the airwaves with lies, that they can make allegations, totally persuasive, against Hillary Clinton but totally false. Their propaganda was so effective that 60 million people, almost as many as voted for her, would vote against her, believing the lie that she is a liar. Many of the more droidal imbeciles even believed, with no rationale whatsoever, that she should be “locked up.”

Of course, for what she should be locked up, the moron class does not know. None of these screaming, purple-faced troglodytes has the faintest idea why she should be locked up. And how do we know? Because a clear, unbiased and truly dedicated investigation to find the source of all this clamor turned up….nothing. Did she lie about Whitewater? Any of her Senate activities? Money from the Clinton foundation (none)? Benghazi? Her emails? No.

None of those things. If you investigate them, you will find out that what have been termed “lies” were misinterpretations, deliberate, of her actions or statements by people like Limbaugh, who, like Trump, lie so regularly that there is a whole industry that must follow him around daily…and as you can see….even that doesn’t work. Because the bigoted and the haters and the paid Right Wing promoters are out there every day. And of course, now we have the Russians joining in, pretending to be Americans on the Right.

After reading all the books written about her and published by Right Wing publishing houses owned by the billionaires, after watching the movies made about her by Steve Bannion and the founder of the Citizen’s United group that wants to let billionaires drown out the voice and the vote of the Middle Class, we found not just a few lies…but no lies at all. You can say, “what about….?” all you want. We have checked every reference and there were no lies. To be clear, Hillary Clinton did not do the things that the Right Wing accuse her of. Period.

But here is something that she has done recently that many Liberals will not like. She has said that European countries must face up tot he task of dealing with the troubles in the Middle East and Northern Africa or their countries will face huge economic and political turmoil. That was not popular in the quite tolerant and permissive counties of Western Europe. But she is right.

And we must face up to the same problems here at home. Central America is a cesspool of violence, poverty, sickness and death. The waves of unrest are moving North. We can solves these problems with massive aid or we can accept a doubling of the Hispanic-speaking population, ignorant, unskilled and often concerned not with becoming Americans but with becoming surviving and thriving Hispanics in the United States. We have many great Hispanic-Americans, and a whole segment of society that, while there are some pockets of gang violence, on the whole is great, great, credit to the principles of American life. Hispanic-Americans are among the greatest strengths that this country has and one of its most interesting diverse nationalities. They are an invaluable asset to our country, restoring our work ethic, demonstrating the human qualities of ambition and dedication.

But the United States must start to act now. We must act to decide how many more people from Latin America we can accept and then ask ourselves what we can do about those qualified and dfoolsesirable individuals whom we cannot accept. How can we help those countries? Or we must decide whether we prefer to become a bi-lingual society. Spanish is an easy language, quite compatible with English. A dual language society would make American dominant on the North American and South American continents. There is that to think about.

I doubt seriously that our golf-clubbing President has thought of any of these things. His goals are all personal. What about his goals for the people? All lies. His goals for the people are very simple…tell them what they will believe so that they wubiill vote for him. They do whatever is best for him. It is quite clear that his family is enriching itself in the Presidency. He still will not release his tax files. He acted like a coward in front of one of America’s greatest enemies, VladiPutmir Putin, a KGB (now FSB) agent, who spent huge amounts of money to see to it that Hillary Clinton, Putin’s real nemesis, was defeated through targeted, illegal, perhaps even collusive methods of interference in our election.

Putin is challenging us around the world, in Syria, in the Ukraine and in the heart of the digital core of our great corporations, government departments and our military. We are falling behind and that is dangerous. In the meantime, our President spends an inordinate amount of time protesting and worrying about his innocence in the last election. If he is innocent, why does he not simply continue with his job. Our West Coast is burning to the ground. Florida is sinking into the ocean. We have gone backwards in the pursuit of renewable energy, something essential for the future of the current generation now coming of age. Yet he spends all his time campaigning for Right Wing bigots and fools, like the Senator from Georgia who lost to the New Southerner, the moderate and intelligent, Senator Doug Jones.

Our President is a shallow man, who led an idiotic television program with overly dramatic presentation and dubious value, somehow apparently thinking that this had made him something other than a aged male version of the Kardashians. His other claim to fame, aside from bankrupting a formerly perfectly profitable venture through foolish expenditures, was his vain attempt to meet beautiful women using the thinly veiled disguise of a beauty contest producer.  We know the many accusations of salacious behavior that resulted from that equally failed enterprise.

Our recent election give us some encouragement. People at the grass roots level went to the polls, many fearing for their economic lives, others…worried about Trump’s total disregard of the health of Americans, having urged total repeal of Obamacare….worried for their very lives and those of their aged parents or their children. But the recent elections only changed the House of Representatives to majority Democratic. The Sen is still in Republican hands, as is the Presidency and the Supreme Court. Despite recent protestations by Supreme Court Senior Justice John Roberts, the voting records and political backgrounds of five of the nine Supreme Court justices and their careful vetting by Right Wing lawyers provides a clear indication of how they will vote on issues that affect the people. Justice Gorsuch in particular has voted for corporate interests almost every time, disregarding the lives or livelihoods of individual citizens along the way.

We cannot let ourselves be hoodwinked or distracted by the constant barrage of nonsense coming from the President. His goal is to take the focus of the American people away from serious issues. We need to stay focused on health care, individual economic stability, better paying jobs, including a living wage for the massive number of working poor who cannot even afford a decent place to live, and the possibility of war or renewed terrorism, based on the distractions created by the President on our military. Immigration, in the short run, is a small issue. We need to  find a way to make Mexico and Central America more responsive to their citizens. Mexico has a high geni index than the United States, meaning that it has even greater income inequality.

As we end this year of 2018, we must begin to spread the word, tell the truth to those who have been lied to for so long. Find ways to ask the simple questions…do you have long term security, as Europeans do? Can  you be sure that your legislators are working for you or are they merely telling you that the votes they make that seem incongruous will some day make sense…but never do…as we grow as a country and a state and a community more indebted while the rich buy more yachts and planes and homes?

Is the tax cut you received worth losing hundreds of dollars a month, or perhaps all of your retirement Social Security, year after year at at a time in your life when you will have no income at all? Do  you care that tens of millions, perhaps even a hundred million Americans will never make enough money to save anything for retirement, or even have equity in a home while several hundred thousand will have multiple homes, each one worth more than you made in a lifetime? Tens of millions of people work each day for companies that make so much profit that they can, as Amazon just did, pay a living wage and experience no more than a slight blip in the income of the owner and the major investors. Yet, those in control, what have  become the greedy super-rich, do not care. They will only respond as they are forced to respond by government, by laws and by the will of the people.

If you have the will, you need to find that politician who is a Populist, which means one who is for the people. That is what a Populist is. Not Trump. Not a Nationalist. Not a Fascist. Not responding to anything but the true needs and wants of the People. Find a politician who responds to the wishes and the needs of the People. If all of us do that, all our problems will melt and our government my finally achieve the kind of results that we all expect from a true Democracy.



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