Bush Hating and Beyond

Recently I was at a Hip-Hop show at an undisclosed location on a confidential night, and while warming up to rock the crowd Rapper X (X for anonymous) gave a lengthy talk about George Bush. In his talk he told the packed house that if he thought it would make a difference he would shoot Bush in the head, noting that he was a little depressed about the outcome of the elections but it was not going to stop him from doing what he was doing.

It wasn’t the statement he made that justified writing this article, it was the significant reaction he got from the people on the dance floor. There were cheers all around the club, proving that hip-hop kids generally speaking share a common hatred for George Bush.

Let’s take everything back to the RNC where over half a million people marched and participated in direct action all over NYC. Do you think a President Kerry would bring so many people together against him? probably not. Kerry’s mistakes aren’t as obvious as Bush’s blunders, a Kerry presidency would have looked liberal and sounded liberal but as soon as anyone got close enough they would have smelled a very fowl conservative agenda that is going keep on going regardless of who takes the podium.

This isn’t a public service announcement for Bush by any means, but just hating Bush is not going to change the very system that his administration is so good at manipulating. We as citizens against Bush have to educate that hate and empower it to create change instead of blindly following the Democratic party down the same rabbit hole that the left always gets sucked into every four years. Third parties, although some espouse libertarian values, if put in the white house will eventually have to appease big business and perpetuate the same platform the other two parties always end up doing. Even if it did stick to it’s guns a third party if elected would not get anything past legislation, be ineffectual, and get voted out come next election. Assimilation is also something that has happened frequently to third parties of the past, like for instance the incorporation of the Free Soil party (anti-slavery) in 1854 by the Republican party. This shows how easily a political party can be turned around and subverted into an authoritarian centralized body. Take for instance the Green Party in Germany, they have gone from libertarian alternative values to acting very much like the former conservative Kohl government, being pro-war while espousing liberal rhetoric (sounds kind of familiar doesn’t it).

Let’s face it the most supposedly ?progressive? president we can look back to in the last 50 years is Jimmy Carter (who was an active member of the Trilateral Commission). Jimmy Carter espoused a liberal energy policy he even put solar panels on the White House, but when he was in office more nuclear power was being used than any other preceding administration. Also, being an active member of the Trilateral Commission buddied him up with David Rockefeller (the rabbit hole gets bigger).

I voted in this election, which is not something I am proud of, because the more I try to rationalize my decision to vote the more I realize that a vote in any presidential election is a stamp of approval for business as usual. Elections are popularity contests for plutocrats, aided very much by corporate media in manufacturing issues for a large population of people. It is imperative to dose people with as much propaganda as possible to maintain and control on a macro-level, if you take away important issues (like trade liberalization and it’s effects on local workers and farmers) from the monopolized public mindset then it’s like they don’t exist at all. It will always be like this when governing on a large-scale, so don’t play into that quagmire think locally.

Anyone who has a grasp on world history (not the revised bullshit they try to pawn off on students in public schools) will understand that unadaptable uniformed systems always lead to tyranny and oppression. There is much strength in diversity and one single system is not going to work everyone.

When a social system is not working for it’s constituents you don’t drag it on for 200+ years. We are beating a dead horse, we are flying in a machine made before the principles of lift were laid down. Guess what, the ground is coming up on us faster and faster, and if we don’t scrap these top to bottom systems for more adaptable locally centered egalitarian designs then we will just repeat history until we undo ourselves.

Iraqi War, just part of a Bigger Problem

With the escalating conflict in Iraq, we as concerned citizens have to speak up and constantly remind people of the situation in Iraq. Conservative estimates put the Iraqi death toll at 10,000 and the US death toll at just over 1,000.

This war in Iraq is about as transparent as it comes. When you look at the reconstruction contracts being dealt out to mostly US corporations and the windfall profit gained, Iraq starts to look more and more like a big corporate grab bag. The two largest contracts dealt out, Kellogg Brown & Root subsidiary Halliburton (oil) & Bechtel (water), have made out pretty nicely from their campaign contributions to the Bush Administration:

Bechtel Group Inc. with $3,310,102 in campaign contributions has made $1,029,833,000 in reconstruction contracts

Kellogg Brown & Root (Halliburton) with $2,379,792 in campaign contributions has made $2,329,040,891 in reconstruction contracts

This isn’t including the money that will be pouring in from the strong hold that these private interests will have on Iraq’s resources. When this conflict is resolved their will be 15 permanent military bases in Iraq, provided that the US ever secures control in Iraq. A good portion of these military bases are conveniently located next to oil fields.

The war in Iraq isn’t just about oil though, it is a matter of economic national security. When you consider the rate of consumption in this country, providing the sufficient amount of resources to fill the demand becomes a hyper-capitalistic neccessity.

When providing resources for your people and protecting investors you have three choices of action as a major super power:

1) Diplomatic means- set up SAPs (Structural Adjustment Programs), if said gov’t is not complicit then you impose Sanctions and cut them out of the international economy.

2) Clandestine activity- Funding opposition leaders that go along with business interests, helping in orchestrating violent coups (Nicaragua, Haiti and countless others)

3) Wage war- convince a population of people that war is the only way to bring peace, liberty, and freedom. Usually this is a last resort option because of the amount of work it takes in propaganda, but that didn’t discourage the Bush Administration.

The Iraqi war represents the protection of our very unsustainable “way of life” (if you want to call it that). From the way our cities are designed around the automobile to the food that travels thousands of miles to make it to our grocery store shelfs and eventually our homes, we are peddling faster and faster towards oblivion.

What can we do here in Omaha to find a stable way of life?

I don’t have all of the answers, but I think a good place to start would be education and community forums to spread awareness. Remembering that this is just one small step, we have to go beyond education to developing relationships with each other that lead to stronger communities. An individual evaluation of lifestyle choices and a general respect for all life is also in order.

Instead of looking at someone and thinking “what can I get out of this person” turn it upside down with “if we work together what can we achieve.” This is the kind of mentality that starts community gardens, neighborhood councils, and free schools.

What we have right now, in this capitalistic democracy (Plutocracy), is Old views with new programs that don’t work.

The war on drugs hasn’t stopped the flow of drugs.

The war on terrorism is creating more terrorism (not forgetting that war usually is state sponsored terrorism).

The prison system hasn’t effectively stopped crime in fact a lot of prisoners are either institutionalized or come out of prison more violent than when they went in.

Even liberal progressive programs don’t solve the problems that comes with civilization. I work with Food Not Bombs, we feed homeless people and it makes me feel good, but we aren’t solving the homelessness situation. We redistribute food that would otherwise be thrown away, but we also create a dependency for the homeless instead of addressing their homelessness. To FNB credit, solving the homeless situation is not in the mission statement, but it should be.

Homelessness is a good example of how a system that is praised on it’s ability to provide everyone with basic human needs has failed to do so. Some homeless people dropped out on purpose, and they wouldn’t want to go back. These people have moved on and realized that this system isn’t working for them. Instead of hiding homeless people from the public eye, let’s communicate with them and give them space to build their own homes (like the homeless did in the NYC subways), if they so please.

I am not suggesting that everyone just drop out of the system tomorrow without pragmatically thinking about what it would take to become self-sustainable. I only propose that those of us who claim to be progressive start working towards that end. Social harmony is never going to be passed down by any administration it will only come through our paricipation here in Omaha.

There are certain reforms that I think could be beneficial to everyone especially in the areas of healthcare and environmental policy, so I am not completely anti-reform.

How many of you have ever heard of there being a homelessness situation in Native America prior to European colonization?