James Clay Fuller

Things We're Not Supposed to Say

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

No time for making nice with the right

Thanks for the input, folks, but I'm still determined to push for candidates who take what I regard as genuinely liberal or progressive stances. Or maybe it's just courageously sane stances.

I believe we should reject those who test the air and smell the polls before coming down solidly on “maybe” on issues of life-and-death importance.

If you're not solidly for a pullout from Iraq within a reasonable amount of time, unshakably against bombing Iran, firmly for campaign finance reform and universal health care, immovably against our government spying on its citizens and equally firm on other issues that speak to the future of this country, you probably don't get my vote. I might let a pol slide on one issue, but it will be one of the lesser ones and she or he has to be reliable on the others. And I'll do what I can to persuade others to my viewpoint, to reject candidates and office holders whose only core value is to feed at the public trough.

We have to stop going along as the politicians set their directions according to the commands of the money elite.

The Clintons want Hillary to be president and, as Zbigniew Brzezinski said on NPR on April 5, they have determined that the best way to achieve that is to look “tough” on so-called national security issues – to favor war and bombs, in other words. People in Washington keep saying she's the frontrunner for the Democratic presidential nomination.

There is no way in this world I will vote for Clinton, or for other Democrats who adopt her stance and follow her leadership. This country will be better off with another openly crazy right winger at the helm; at least then everyone can identify the villains.

One friend called my stance arrogant. So be it. Isn't anyone who expresses firm opinions in such a forum arrogant in some sense?

The lack of courage and, I think, political smarts among Democrats in failing to stand up to the neocon imperialists and religious snake handlers is the foremost reason the United States looks more and more like an oversized sheikdom, in my estimation.

There's been considerable comment in the Minnesota Peace and Justice newsletter about what “moderate” and “liberal” mean since Dick Bernard opened our discussion to others in that venue. I didn't count them, but a fair number of folks sent notes to Bernard, who runs the newsletter and who wrote responses (article below this one) to my earlier questions and complaints.

Despite all the serious thoughts offered, however, nothing much has changed for me. I did not get specific answers to some important questions, such as how the hopeful moderates intend to compromise with a right wing power elite that will give nothing, will not trade but only take.

I now think it's probably more relevant to talk about “corporatists” -- the apparent majority of members of all political parties who remain in thrall to the leaders of the giant corporations -- than to argue about moderates and centrists, liberals and progressives, but it's a relatively minor matter at this point.

What I believe is that the public can take some control back from the greed-maddened right only if we can elect politicians who stand up and tell the truth about the shape we're in and who's robbing us blind and tearing our country apart. I believe that a majority of Americans are ready to hear the truth and to act on it. I believe more will recognize the truth when (if) they – finally – hear it.

It's not immigrants and “welfare queens” and the almost absent “labor” who are responsible for the fact that a majority of Americans have lost ground economically over the past decade, or that we're now in what looks to become a perpetual state of war. Gays aren't to blame because fewer and fewer people have adequate health care, or that the corporations are stripping employees of their pensions and other benefits. It's not women who have abortions or use birth control who are destroying the planet at a terrifying rate.

We need politicians who will talk openly about the crimes and social disasters and lay the blame where it belongs and flatly refuse to be drawn into campaign-eating arguments about sexuality and official languages and similar distractions.

We need to point out that at this point a vote for any Republican for any office is a vote for continued corruption and war, because the cowed foot sloggers of the party give the leaders the numerical strength that allows them to push us further into the swamps of despair. Votes for Democrats of the Joe Lieberman and Hillary Clinton variety amount to the same thing.

Do you want to live in a democratic America or a semi-fascist -- or perhaps not "semi" -- plutocracy similar to those that squatted over most of Latin America with our help for many years?

Decide soon. Seriously, time is running out.