Because of the intensity of the debate on health care reform, and the Republican ideological war on the middle class, we are now hearing much talk about the “American Center,” the supposedly independent political middle. The fact is that there is no political middle, polls notwithstanding. The only poll that matters, politicians will tell you if they think you are involved in politics and not merely a constituent is the vote. And the votes are sharply divided.
They are divided between those who are concerned about their families, about jobs and health care and retirement. And then there are those who are either rich or are ideologically against blacks or against unions or against those who do not agree with their religious positions or live somewhere like New York City that they do not understand. The latter, who might be called “Neoconservatives” or “Neocons” are not in the political middle, even if they say that they are undecided about issues. They are Right Wing operatives because they vote against the middle class, which many of them are.
There is no such thing as a “conservative” any longer. Conservatives were people who wanted to reduce the size of government for one of two reasons. They felt that big government controlled their (states’) rights to do certain things that they wanted to do. The most obvious example is segregation and inferior treatment of those who are not white. Or they felt that big government led to big taxes, which is not necessarily true…if states ran things, taxes would be much, much higher or life would be much less secure, safe, or pleasant.
What used to be called Conservative is now Neoconservative and they no longer care about reducing the cost of government. They now only want to reduce their personal taxes, while keeping a huge military and having whatever they want from government without allowing anyone else to have access to the same privileges. These are the people, by and large, for whom “greed is good” and who believe that anyone can commit any crime and then become a good Christian by simply stopping for a minute and thinking “I accept Jesus as my savior.” If you have either of these characteristics, the logical extension of your position means that you are, in fact, not in the center. You are a Neoconservative. You may also be slightly demented.
The Right Wing Republicans, who are already making plans to take back the country in 2010, are working on that plan right now. Health care reform was a test of that plan. The goal is to distract and divert attention away from the fact that the things the country most needs inexpensive energy, domestic jobs, peace…so that we can bring down some of the $600 billion a year we spend on military…and health care are the things that will shift income for the top 1% of the country.
All the things that we need are part of legislation that the Democrats are trying to enact…middle class benefits…that the Neocons (Republicans) must try to prevent. So they tell the country that health care reform is either “government control” though it will be the same as it was…private health care insurance, or that Cap and Trade is a “huge tax on the Average American citizen” although it is not. The energy bill will create literally millions of new jobs in alternative energy from wind and solar and alternative fuels that we can create here at home, in America, so that we will actually save trillions that are now going to Arab countries. Why do Republicans lie about these things? Because they are funded by oil companies, by health industry companies and by other existing sources of energy, like coal, who will be forced to change their high-pollution diets.
Will you pay more? If Republicans are in power, yes, you can count on the fact that they will not let their lobbyist pals in the energy field take the hit for environmental improvements they were supposed to do as long ago as the early 1980s. If the Democrats remain in power, only a sliver of these costs will be passed on to consumers. The big corporations will get tax breaks to change their behavior. That is how they will get back the costs of making the air cleaner and less pollutant without passing them on to the public.
If you are for the people in this, you are on the left; if you are for the coal and oil companies, you are on the right. But you cannot be in the center.
We have made some very serious mistakes that have caused us to fall into the hands of a very dangerous group of people. In 1996, we allowed radio and television networks to own as many individual units as they wanted. Within a year Clear Channel owned 1200 stations and the Conservative ownership had Rush Limbaugh blasting out his anti-American propaganda to 15 million people a day. Other chains like Citadel did the same thing, and put up other radio hosts who spewed lies so vicious against those who work for the average citizen that web sites were put up just to keep in touch with their hundreds of anti-American lies per day.
By the way, anti-American means this: if you are for the guy who lives next door who may have lost his job, you are an American, and a left winger. If you are, like Rush Limbaugh, for the big corporation who just sent your neighbor’s job overseas and you are telling everyone that it is a good thing, too, because products will be cheaper at Walmart, where very few people have health insurance, and which may eventually be the only place your neighbor can find a job…then you are anti-American and a right winger.
There is no “Center.”
The same people who created the Project for a New American Century have a plan to keep America safe. It is simply to keep a huge military on hand, about 1.6 million men and women under arms. Then you do what this group recommended to President Clinton and what they did when they came to power in 2001…you attack those whom you don’t like, and you change the country’s government to one you do like. It’s called regime change and some of the Project for a New American Century’s members—George Bush, Dick Cheney, Don Rumsfeld, Paul Wolfowitz, John Bolton, Richard Perle and Richard Armitage did exactly that in 2003.They attacked Iraq and killed off its dictator and set up a new regime, one that they put into office. They weren’t the first to do it. The American government did the same thing in a different way 30 years before in Iran. And we did it in South Viet Nam and in Latin America. But Project for a New American Century doesn’t stop there.
You don’t create an empire with a vibrant society. You create an empire with an obedient society. We began to live that way under Bush and Cheney, one of the founders of Project for a New American Century. The way it was done was to control the messages coming out over the airwaves. Call a big cutback in pollution…the Clean Skies Act. Clamp down on anyone who disagrees with your belligerent international policies, including starting wars. Don’t let the diplomat husband of a CIA operative speak out in print against the rationale for going to war. Don’t let others speak out against torture or against “rendition,” picking up people off the street and sending them somewhere to be tortured.
The people controlling our private investment purse strings, the people who, like Henry Paulson, Bush’s Treasury Secretary who bailed out Wall Street and wanted no strings attached…these people are not lined up with you and me and your neighbor next door. These are people who live in expensive towers in New York City or gated communities in Texas or on estates in Southern California.
They play by their own rules. They assemble funds and give those funds to people who are assigned the job of controlling the message. Only when they commit a virtual crime upon the community of such magnitude as happened in October 2008, when they tried to bankrupt the financial system…only then are they recognized…come out of hiding…and are exposed for the Right Wing activists that they are.
Normally, they don’t have a problem. If it is a tax cut they want, they send money to congress to obtain a thousand times the amount they send to get a tax break or a business tax eliminated. They own the media and they have created a false image of the average American. They have deluded Americans into thinking that they were wealthy when they were only unencumbered; that they were free when they were only unrestricted; that they were solvent when they were making a few more dollar than they spent and that they were secure when they were only employed.
Society needs a large number of skilled people in certain specific occupations in order to keep the wheels grinding. But today many of the jobs that are important to a society but not immediately and daily essential, as are physicians and nurses and teachers and certain kinds of engineers…those other jobs are tenuous at best. These essential jobs are what make society stick together rather than falling apart. But they are not what give wealth to society.
The professions that advance our society, create affluence for buying homes and for retirement…these ten percent or more of creative, active professions that help build American industry have gone overseas. Professions or skills that have been overtaken by time or geography have been discarded as have many of the workers who were accomplished in handling those tasks. In the Neocon economy, this was merely a line on the national balance sheet that could be drawn through or erased.
Unlike the European countries, the Right Wing of the American political system does not cherish work or skill. They discourage traditional skills. The Right Wing wants the public to develop a “work ethic.” It is much like our “patriotic” ethic. God and Country–no matter whose country we invade or why. The work ethic is George W. Bush praising a woman who had three jobs instead of asking why she needed three jobs.
The political center is no longer where free men roam. The American center is Orwellian and becoming more so every day. Those wonderful people who brought you the attack on Baghdad and who looked the other way while 19 Arabs killed 3,000 Americans…they still control the economy and the message.
Think of it. The same men who created the circumstances that have caused the crisis in health care are now controlling a message about health care. They are called Republicans. I call them Neocons, which is what they are. Newt Gingrich killed health care reform in the early 1990s. Now he is back on television railing against this health care bill. He has a web site paid for by Right Wing health care interests who are against health care.
How dumb do you have to be to see that Gingrich is connected to McConnell who is connected to Boehner who is connected to and spoke immediately after Rick Scott at one of their rallies. Rick Scott was head of Hospital Corporation of America and who is not only against health care reform but who led a company that was fined $1.7 billion by the federal government for cheating patients! Of course he is against health care. He has a company that is still doing business making huge profits by legally not providing services to people who need them. That’s why we need to change the laws! It’s called “reform!”
The Neocons (Republicans) have fought this all the way. First, in the face of overwhelming evidence, they declared that we did not need health care. Then they tried to prevent it by voting against every single piece of legislation that was brought up, even against some amendments that a few of their own Party introduced. Then they created huge misperceptions about it by funding and creating messages for Dick Armey (former Republican House of Representatives leader) and his FreedomWorks…commonly called the “tea parties.”
Here’s what they do. They create misrepresentations about the health care plans and then get pollsters to take polls on the misrepresentations and then say that people don’t want health care. Well, if you say it is going to raise taxes enormously, be government controlled, bankrupt Medicare and ruin the economy even more…none of which are even remotely true…naturally people will say they don’t want it. Democrats don’t want that either.
Yes, it does seem obvious. But here is why it works on some people. Think of someone like Glenn Beck on television. He is so completely loony that his sponsors leave him. But his network, not only keeps him on, they not only do so, but they keep his inane rants on prime time, like some macabre replay of the old movie “Network.” Why? He has no sponsors. The sponsors know he is offensive to almost everyone but the racist and irrational Right Wing, so they want out. But the network keeps him on. They don’t reprimand him but encourage him. So…who would do that? Ask yourself why would they leave a man on the air that not only lies about facts, but makes up fantasies about Nazis in government one day and then Communists (about the same people) the next day.
He calls a President who has tried everything possible to bring in bi-partisan leadership and govern in a bi-partisan manner…a dictator. Not only is it a total fantasy in a country as open as this one, where Tiger Woods can’t even keep girlfriends quiet, but to ascribe it to this President who has gone beyond what Liberals would call a shred of common sense or even dignity to appease Republicans….well, Beck is simply a lunatic.
Fox News Channel, Fox Television, the Wall Street Journal, the New York Post, cable television, radio stations, newspapers…all are owned by the same man who wants Glenn Beck on television every night. Why would you think he would do it?
This is the same point of view as that of the international corporations, of the American Enterprise Institute, the Heritage Foundation, the Hoover Institution, the Cato Institute, huge hospital chains, the oil and energy industry, the military leadership and their inter changeable representation among the huge military contractors, plus the Republican Party, including the former southern Dixiecrats…segregationists.
Their goal is to first, fund themselves. Create positions inside and outside government where they can influence the flow of government money to private enterprises, like military contracting or to the health care industry. The next step is to fund their operation.
These people will always oppose spending for the people that does not include spending for themselves first. They will always oppose “entitlements” in order to obtain tax cuts, despite the fact that we pay the lowest personal and corporate taxes as a percentage of income since before the Great Depression. Remember, these are the same people who tried to put your Social Security into the stock market during the Bush Administration. Charlie Schwab, running around the country, talking about how much better off you would have been. Ask your father or grandfather what he would do now if his Social Security had lost half its value.
The current idea that the Neocons, the Republicans, are in favor of health care reform, that they are concerned about budget deficits…that THEY created!…or that they are sincere about any program at all that has to do with the average citizen is so absurd as to be laughable.
Here is a good example. Everyone, even Republicans, agreed that we need health care reform. But every single Republican, all of whom are in the pockets of the health industry lobbyists, voted every single time against any reasonable health care proposal.
So it was left to Democrats to solve. The fact is, Republicans, funded by the health care industry to the tune of $400 million dollars…don’t care. The Democrats were then set upon every day by the media who were provided objections and distractions by the Right Wing that helped to create diversions in the process. It was planned and institutionalized partisanship by the Neocons. Make every single Democrat, no matter what reservation he or she may have about a piece of legislation…make them all, every one, vote for each one, every time. Disrupt and delay the process as much as possible.
That’s how it went, day after day, for almost a year. And still the Democrats succeeded. Of course then the Neocons went on television (owned by their backers, the media moguls) to claim that the American people don’t like health care reform. These same Americans who are told that they are in the “center” are the same who are deluded into thinking that they are also wealthy, free, solvent and secure. These are the same people who are hanging on by their fingernails. If they don’t even know the reality of who they are, how can they know if a health care plan, that in reality should go much, much farther than it does, is good for them?
But that is how it works. There is a huge group of very wealthy people and the people whose jobs rely on their good will. And then there is everyone else.
There is no “Center.”