Georgia, Politics and Political Reform
In the United States both major political parties are economically neoliberal and belligerently neoconservative and Zionist. Their main difference is that one is honest about its policies (the GOP) and the other deceptive and hypocritical (the Democratic Party).
For progressives, the latter is by far the most dangerous as it subverts potential adherents to progressive political movements by frightening them into supporting its candidates through the bipartisan lesser evil terror campaigns and by proposing policies and legislation that seems to address progressive goals but which instead, are cleverly designed to misdirect them. Prime examples include Obamacare instead of single payer health care, the Paris Climate Accord instead of binding, pro-environmental legislation, the Dodd Frank purported financial reforms, etc.
For libertarians, the former is by far the most dangerous as it subverts potential adherents to libertarian political movements using virtually identical tactics as does the Democratic Party with respect to progressives.
On Tuesday, June 20, 2017, a special election is being held in the State of Georgia in a historically Republican district where the hypocrisy of the Democratic Party ought to be the main topic, but given the mainstream media’s allegiances, the issue, while unavoidable, is carefully camouflaged. It involves the raw purchase of political power. The Democratic Party has bought control of the election from its figurehead candidate as part of its attempted federal soft coup by pouring in out-of-district-and-special-interest funds, the kind of activity it decries with crocodile tears but of which it incessantly avails itself. The Washington Free Beacon, not exactly an objective source, has nonetheless reported the available data concerning fundraising and expenditures in the most expensive Congressional election ever, and that in a rural county in Georgia.
“Jon Ossoff, the Democratic candidate, has hauled in more than $23 million in total contributions. Nearly 97 percent of Ossoff’s contributions throughout the campaign have come from individuals who live outside of the state of Georgia. Ossoff has spent $22.5 million and has slightly over $1 million cash on hand. Karen Handel, the Republican candidate and Georgia’s former secretary of state, has pulled in $4.5 million in campaign contributions to date, five times less than Ossoff. Handel, by comparison, shows campaign disbursements of $3.2 million — seven-and-a-half times less than the amount Ossoff has spent” (see http://freebeacon.com/issues/40-million-spent-georgias-record-breaking-special-election/).
So, about how evil the Supreme Court’s Citizens United decision is and how it makes a complete mockery of democracy, and which party is the party of big money and outside interests? Well, Clinton Democrats will heave a big sigh of relief if they can pull this one off showing the one percent that they can still be counted on to deliver power while fooling progressives into believing that this is a victory for them too. All things to all people and power to the few would seem the appropriate slogan.
The lesson of course ought to be that there should be at least three major political parties in the United States but not in the sense usually envisioned. The GOP and the Democrats should just merge as the representatives of the one percent and of never ending war in support of Zionist aspirations. Libertarians should return to their already existent party and progressives need a party of their own. The Green Party seemed a possibility but its name inaccurately implies a single issue focus and unfortunately, Jill Stein, who seemed an awesome candidate, not only failed to resonate but in the end betrayed her party to help the Democrats perpetrate the myth that the elections of 2016 had been stolen. So much for independence although it has to be admitted that her actions were anathema to many Green Party members.
Of course, real political reform, effective political reform, requires profound and honest introspection with respect to whether or not democracy can work and whether, if democracy is viable, it can work in a federal context in the United States. The outrage with respect to how the Electoral College functions (one can’t accurately claim that it works) is really a repudiation of federalism, perhaps not a bad thing. However, while unitary government might certainly be more efficient and more democratic, it is less pluralistic, further removed from the public, and perhaps not psychologically viable in a setting where state identification remains so powerful for so many.
Even were federalism not an issue, constitutional reform is very past due and there is a great deal of room for improvement, especially with reference to electoral systems, our first past the post system probably being the least representative of any purportedly democratic electoral systems. Interested persons might at least look into alternatives, such as the Irish Republic’s political system, one of the world’s most innovative.
So, today is that Tuesday, the 20th of June, 2017, the Tuesday when one Congressional district in the State of Georgia will let us know just how easy our votes are to purchase by out of state interests, and just how badly our political systems work. No result can turn out right but hopefully, at least for those of us on the left, the daily deluge of emails demanding contributions to stave off the apocalypse and to help overthrow the Trump administration may slow down, at least for a while.
© Guillermo Calvo Mahé; Manizales, 2017; all rights reserved
Guillermo Calvo Mahé is a writer, political commentator and academic currently residing in the Republic of Colombia. Until recently he chaired the Political Science, Government and International Relations programs at the Universidad Autónoma de Manizales. He has academic degrees in political science, law, international legal studies and translation studies and can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org. Much of his writing is available through his blog at www.guillermocalvo.com.