Stop obliterating yourself!
By Reza Fiyouzat
Online Journal Contributing Writer
May 6, 2008, 00:18
If it was unclear to most American observers of the U.S.
presidential elections, it was clear to most Middle Easterners, of whom I am
one. I am talking about the recently solved mystery about what one Democratic
candidate, Hilary Clinton, would ultimately be willing to do to us Middle
Easterners of the Iranian variety, if elected.
I get the feeling that Barak Obama would likely do the same
to us, but he's coy about it, and keeps that kind of talk for special audiences
only: Jewish ones, especially when the audience is packed by the AIPAC.
Now, in case you thought Clinton was only talking about
obliterating Iran, you are wrong.
When a person running for a U.S. national office, any
person, supports the 'war on terror', that person is also supporting the loss
of civil liberties for the citizens of the U.S. He or she supports the
suspension of habeas corpus (have you
heard a single comment on that topic this election year? Not likely!). The same
person supports the exorbitant theft of people's money (taxes) and the
hand-over of the same money to the financial-military-oil complex currently
running the major levers of power in the U.S.
The same candidate supports the loss of all money for
education, healthcare and all other needs of the working classes in the U.S.,
the very people who create all the wealth and provide all the services. The
same candidate also supports all the international institutions created for the
flow of the so-called Free Trade, which in fact should be called the absolute
freedom, with no discrimination, of capital to do as it wishes to all; which,
in turn, means the candidate will do nothing to stop the loss of jobs to
cheaper labor markets, as well as the loss of purchasing power of the people in
the U.S.; nor will the said candidate do anything to address poverty besetting
50 million people in the U.S., more to be added to these ranks as you read
So, when a desperate candidate, out of frustration and the
need to show how tough s/he can be, announces s/he is willing and ready to
obliterate a people far way across the globe, you can bet your sweet tooth that
s/he will not hesitate a second to continue
obliterating YOU, the American voter!
In fact, bet that the very candidate is so assured of your
obliteration that s/he sees no problem enunciating, out loud and unashamed, the
most horrid, the most vicious, the most barbaric thoughts; assured that none of
the stench, the ugliness or the absurdity will be sensed, nor any emotional
shocks caused for a second, thanks to the corporate media.
To sum up: when a political candidate running for national
office says to your face that s/he does not give a flying duck about your
education, your health, your jobs, your life or those of your children's and
grandkids', you are obliterated!
A small example: I am an educator by day (and most of the
night, which is what it takes to be an educator). We learned recently that
teachers lost a 'privilege' previously available, which was the permission to
deduct up to $250 a year on our taxes for work-related expenses such as
teaching materials (needed to do one's job as a teacher). We can no longer
deduct that paltry sum (which, to us lesser earners is not that paltry). And
why? California budget cuts. Now, as professionals go, we occupy pretty much
the bottom of the bottom rungs of all trades; lower than any carpenter,
plumber, lower than a lot of wait staff and bartenders, way lower than
accountants, and I hear even lower than some sanitary workers -- God bless
them. Even so, a lot of us pay out of pocket for tons of things we need to use
in our work with our students.
For all the money we spend throughout the year, a measly
$250 could be deducted previously. Not any more! Why? Because the war must
continue. In most likelihood, the students who would benefit from such
teachers' expenditures are students in ill-funded schools, where the teachers
have more need to reach into their own pockets (because the school isn't
providing the funds) to provide the needed things for their lessons.
Or take another example: as noted by Lillian Taiz, president
of the California Faculty Association and professor of history at Cal State Los
Angeles, in a letter to editors published at New York Times, "Arnold Schwarzenegger proposes a 10 percent
across-the-board cut in state financing that would leave our state university
$386 million deeper in the hole" (March 1, 2008).
The amount 'saved' by the government through denying the teachers
a miserly tax write off, or the amount saved by cutting the California
education budget by 10 percent could easily have been provided by suspending
the war mongering for a few weeks. This is how wars of aggression obliterate
people at home.
Clearly there is no shortage of money given by the American
people to the government. The war mongers have no problem getting funded and
would not let go of a penny of their budget (people's taxes), even though the
military budget of this country equals (or may in fact exceed) the combined military budgets of ALL other
countries on this planet.
So, let's not help the ruling class obliterate us any more.
Let's use this election year to get a tally of our own numbers and strength.
Let's see how many of us there really are! What is our actually existing
numbers? Does anybody (besides the NSA and the CIA) know that number? What is
the point of wasting votes by voting for establishment candidates? Whichever of
the three establishment candidates gets into the White House, the fact and the
ferocity of the Empire will continue unabated.
As you are right now, you are not represented. Period. Not
only that, you are actively disenfranchised as
Just as you vote that once every two or four years, and just
as you exit the polling station to go back to cook some food, pick up your kids
from school, or go back to the office or the factory or the barracks, as you
retreat to you 'private life' (very little of which is truly private, and a
majority of which is decided in the public realm of the political); as you
deliver your full and complete political representational trust into a closed
fist that then punches all life out of you and yours; you are obliterated!
You do not exist, except in so far as you grease the wheels of
capital accumulation and migration. You can do your best and work your life
away, but politically you count as zero. Until you start complaining, of
course. Then the politicos pretend they 'hear you,' just to shut you up. But
how often has your mere complaining changed things?
Every time you vote and disappear behind the private life's
curtain, not bothering to demand anything for the political capital you hand
over, you are obliterated a little bit more.
Every time you hand your tax money to the state and don't
get to dictate to them how to spend your money on you YOUR needs, you are
Every time you vote using a machine that leaves no paper
trails, you are obliterated.
Stop obliterating yourself!
This election year, let's say 'NO MORE!' Say, 'Ya Basta!'
Say, 'Screw this stupidity!' Let's act like Wobblies would, like Yippies would,
like any decent thinking human would, and turn the tables on them. Let's come
together and use this so-called democratic moment and turn it around.
In some countries elections are boycotted because the
elections are so violently eschewed that to participate in them is to make an
open fool of oneself. In the U.S., however, voting 'irregularities' are not
accompanied by open violence (unless you are black, and, until recent history,
your voting was inhibited by lynching, and later still your votes were simply
counted very inaccurately, when counted at all).
In this country, about half of the population has been
boycotting the elections for the last 40 years: on average, voter turnout for
federal elections since 1968 has been 46.3 percent (see: National Voter Turnout In
Federal Elections: 1960�2006 and do the math yourself). So, obviously a
majority of the population has already marked the legislature and the executive
branches as beyond their reach; boycott by default.
But to simply withdraw from the legislative branch is a huge
capitulation; it may seem revolutionary to some, but such 'revolutionaries' would
have to explain the recent Maoist victories in the Nepalese legislature in some
dark, 'reformist' light (not in the bright revolutionary light they are
currently praised); or else they must go looking for explanations for their own
behavior for the past few decades.
On the other hand (and to repeat), caution is absolutely
necessary on the really capitulatory side. Forget about anybody like Michael
Moore's pronouncements of support for Obama, or Medea Benjamin, Hollywood
celebs, or any others who propagandize in favor of anything to do with
supporting the Democrats. Get your own legislative seats: Fight for these
seats, don't just give them away!
All Democrats are on
record supporting the destruction of other countries if need be (the 'need'
of the U.S. ruling class, that is). That means they are willing, and will be
able, to obliterate the U.S. citizens, too. All Democrats will continue to use
the public funds provided by the citizens of the U.S. to oppose the wishes of
the people of the U.S. to the same degree as the Republicans do right now. They
already have been doing that.
So, why doesn't the U.S. Left take inventory of its numbers
at least? Here is a perfectly legal and available way of finding out how many
of us there really are. If you are going to vote at all, vote Nader or
McKinney, vote together and let's get past that federal-money-bringing 5
percent point; it's our money: let's take it back!
Reza Fiyouzat can be reached at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Copyright © 1998-2007 Online Journal
Email Online Journal Editor