America Celebrates Lateral Move From Monarchy To Corporate Rule

Americans celebrate their independence 242 years ago today from Britain with little thought it seems about who rules them now, comments Caitlin Johnstone.

By Caitlin Johnstone

Today America celebrates its liberation from the shackles of the British Crown and the beginning of its transition into corporatist oligarchy, which is a lot like celebrating your lateral promotion from housekeeping to laundry staff. Fireworks will be set off, hot dogs will be consumed, and a strange yellow concoction known as Mountain Dew will be imbibed by patriotic high-fiving Yankees eager to celebrate their hard-fought freedom to funnel their taxes into corporate welfare instead of to the King.

Spark up a bottle rocket for me, America! In trouncing King George’s red-coated goon squad, you made it possible for the donor class to slowly buy up more and more control of your shiny new government, allowing for a system of rule determined not by royal bloodlines, but by wealth bloodlines. Now instead of your national affairs being determined by some gilded schmuck across the pond, they are determined by the billionaire owners of multinational corporations and banks. These oligarchs have shored up their rule to such an extent that congressional candidates who outspend their opponents are almost certain to win, and a 2014 Princeton study found that ordinary Americans have no influence whatsoever over the behavior of their government while the will of the wealthy has a direct influence on US policy and legislation.

The elite class secured its stance as British Rule 2.0 by throwing their money behind politicians who they knew would advance their interests, whether those interests are in ensuring that the arms and munitions they manufacture get used frequently, the expansion of predatory trade policies, keeping tax loopholes open and keeping taxes on the wealthiest of the wealthy very low, deregulating corporations and banks, or enabling underhanded Wall Street practices which hurt the many for the benefit of the few. The existence of legalized bribery and corporate lobbying as illustrated in the video above have enabled the plutocrats to buy up the Legislative and Executive branches of the US government, and with these in their pockets they were eventually able to get the Judicial branch as well since justices are appointed and approved by the other two. Now having secured all three branches in a system of checks and balances theoretically designed to prevent totalitarian rule, the billionaire class has successfully secured totalitarian rule.

By tilting the elections of congressmen and presidents in such a way as to install a corporatist Supreme Court bench, the oligarchs successfully got legislation passed which further secured and expanded their rule with decisions like 1976’s Buckley v. Valeo1978’s First National Bank of Boston v. Bellotti, and 2010’s Citizens United v. FEC. This has had the effect of creating a nation wherein money equals power, which has in turn had the effect of creating a system wherein the ruling class is, in a very real way, incentivized to try and keep everyone else poor in order to maintain its rule.

George III: Like today’s rulers of America, he didn’t give up without a fight. (National Portrait Gallery, London.)

Just as King George didn’t give up rule of the New World colonies without a knock-down, drag-out fight, King George 2.0 has no intention of relinquishing its rule either. The oligarchs have been fighting to keep their power, and, in the money-equals-power system that they have built for themselves, this necessarily means keeping you from having money. Just as King George’s kingship would have meant nothing if everybody was King, the oligarchs won’t be oligarchs anymore if ordinary Americans are ever able to secure enough money for themselves to begin influencing their government within its current money-equals-power paradigm.

So if you’ve ever wondered why seemingly common sense matters like a living wage and healthcare as a right consistently get shot down by your government, this is why. In order to rule you as King George ruled you, the oligarchs need to make sure most of America is toiling just to keep its head above water. Progressives were able to mount an intimidating insurgency using tiny 27-dollar donations on 2016; imagine what they could do if ordinary working Americans were being paid their fair share of the U.S. economy?

The oligarchs can keep that from happening by continually escalating income inequality. They use their massive political power to repress the minimum wage, to undermine the power of unions, and to continually pull more and more energy away from socialist programs and toward the corporate deregulation of neoliberalism. If you don’t depend on running the rat race for some corporate boss in order for your family to have health insurance, you’re suddenly free to innovate, create, and become an economically powerful entrepreneur yourself.

America is a corporatist oligarchy dressed in drag doing a bad impression of a bipartisan democracy. Sometimes it doesn’t even keep its wig on; a recent party at the Hamptons saw Jared Kushner, Ivanka Trump, Kellyanne Conway and Charles Koch mixing it up with Chuck Schumer and George Soros. When they’re not dining on champagne and rare fillet together, these people pretend to be locked in a vicious partisan battle that is “tearing the nation apart,” but at Lally Weymouth’s annual Southampton summer party the act stops and the oligarchs frolic together like children.

1776 turned out to be nothing other than a transition from one form of exploitative rule to another, but who knows? Maybe a year in the not-too-distant future will see America celebrating a real Independence Day.

This commentary was originally published on Medium.

Caitlin Johnstone is a rogue journalist, poet, and utopia prepper who publishes regularly at Medium. Follow her work on FacebookTwitter, or her website. She has a podcast and a new book Woke: A Field Guide for Utopia Preppers. This article was re-published with permission.

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141 comments for “America Celebrates Lateral Move From Monarchy To Corporate Rule

  1. Herbert Wolfson
    July 13, 2018 at 2:24 pm

    But if it’s legal, is it corruption? To paraphrase Nixon, “if the monarch does it it’s not corruption”

  2. Juan P. Zenter
    July 9, 2018 at 8:57 am

    Libertarianism leads to Oligarchy, guaranteed.

    Remember that if you are ever tempted to vote for a Libertarian.

    • Skip Scott
      July 10, 2018 at 6:07 am

      I think there are a lot of Libertarians that would argue that. Most Libertarians are opposed to “fiat” currency and the Federal Reserve, and most Libertarians are opposed to foreign intervention and wars of aggression. Those are the biggest tools of Oligarchy. I think the Progressives should find common cause with the Libertarians to fight the war machine. We can always debate the extent of the role of government in a free society afterwards. I’ve voted for Ron Paul when he was the only peace candidate; and I like the guy, even though I don’t agree with him about some topics.

      • Juan P. Zenter
        July 10, 2018 at 3:52 pm

        Extreme libertarians equate taxes with theft, so they can hardly be expected to advocate progressive taxation as a means to rein in the Oligarchy. Basically, Libertarian ideology doesn’t have any tools to deal with oligarchs, because their existence is not seen as a problem.

        • Skip Scott
          July 11, 2018 at 7:24 am

          Yeah, I obviously disagree with Libertarians about taxation and the extent of the role of government. However, I think the most important thing in today’s world is to stop the war machine, and I will make common cause with Libertarians if that’s what it takes. I also see some danger in the “nanny state” mentality. In health care, for example, probably 75% of monies expended are to treat diseases that manifest from poor life style choices. Yet, as a free society, I can’t see us mandating diet and exercise. So people who make healthy choices have their tax dollars spent treating people who knowingly make poor life style choices. As a progressive, I see the answer in “sin taxes” to fund most of the health care system. Libertarians would probably let people suffer the consequences of their poor decision making if they don’t have money for treatment. These are the kinds of debates I can see happening with the Libertarians AFTER we work together to stop the war machine.

  3. Berna
    July 8, 2018 at 5:32 pm

    Things really went corporate in the 1880s when the courts in California ruled that corporations are people. Ironically, the case was based on an argument that the 14th amendment which granted freed slaves full rights also applied to corporations.

  4. Garrett Connelly
    July 7, 2018 at 3:28 pm

    Bipartisan representative democracy is two descriptive adjectives away from democracy itself.

  5. Juan P. Zenter
    July 5, 2018 at 9:36 pm

    Progressive taxation can cure oligarchy when strongly applied.

    • Skip Scott
      July 6, 2018 at 7:55 am

      It’s hard to get progressive taxation when you have the foxes guarding the hen house. The top tax rate on income of over $200,000 was 91% during FDR and Ike administrations. Of course that’s equivalent to a little over $2,000,000 in today’s money. Nonetheless, it would be a huge equalizing force; but it has a snowball’s chance in hell of ever coming back with a Congress made up of millionaires and owned by billionaires.

      • Juan P. Zenter
        July 6, 2018 at 9:02 pm

        Agreed.

        If you think about how oligarchs become oligarchs, through relentless pursuit of their own private economic and political interests, it seems highly unlikely that any oligarchy is capable of self-reform. More likely is that the oligarchs struggle for dominance amongst themselves causes political instability and makes it impossible for a country to effectively deal with any challenges. Naturally, the well being of the little people is not a factor in how things play out.

        • Richard Algeni Jr
          July 11, 2018 at 3:53 pm

          The only way to cure this is a Constitutional Amendment for a flat tax with 0 deductions for all income. A Constitutional Amendment for a balanced budget, with the tax rate being raised during deficits, and lowered during surpluses. Ans a Constitutional Amendment for term limits on all Federal offices.

          • Juan P. Zenter
            July 12, 2018 at 12:36 am

            I have to disagree with you. A flat tax is the opposite of a progressive tax where the rich pay a greater rate than the poor. Also, a balanced budget amendment is pretty much the definition of a permanent austerity policy where poor people needlessly suffer in an otherwise rich country. The policies you describe would make the US more of an oligarchy than it already is.

          • Skip Scott
            July 12, 2018 at 8:25 am

            Richard-

            I think your plan might work if there was a cut off for the very poor so they didn’t pay any taxes, and no cap on social security taxes, but an upper cap on benefits. The rich would pay significantly more taxes than they do now with all their special deductions, and CPA’s could find a profession more beneficial to society as a whole. I doubt that term limits would do much good without getting rid of the bribery via campaign financing and the “revolving door” to high paying corporate jobs.

          • David Hamilton
            July 12, 2018 at 6:17 pm

            The problem with a flat tax is that the wealthy ought to pay progressively more of their income in taxes, because they benefit disproportionately more from the economic structure and the resources of their country, compared to the working and middle classes.

            The wealthy enjoy all of the established structures, such as court systems (which define well their rights, protections, and responsibilities), the education and health systems (which provide them with valuable human labor – both mental and physical value), the “defense” systems or offensive war systems (which provide safety and predictability in foreign trading and investing), the environmental protection system (which provides clean shared resources such as water and air).

            For them to duck their responsibilities and undo progressive taxation, is to transfer most all those costs that are required to maintain a fair and productive environment for them and their profiteering businesses onto everybody else in society. Especially at this time, when in the last 40 years the wealthy have already undone most of progressive taxation or avoided paying their share through off-shoring their money, and have jointly with their friends in Congress impoverished the masses and the treasury, is no time to advance “flat tax” under the rubric that “it is fair”. Under such circumstances, implementation of such a flat tax would simply seal the deal for the rich, as they will have successfully transferred their obligations onto everybody else, to pay off on their behalf. If you disagree, then please tell me how the low and middle classes benefited from, say, the Global War on Terror, the account of which is still due and unpaid. And tell me why the poor and middle classes should pay this off, which is surely what will happen if a flat tax were to be enacted (and of course if it is ever decided again to pay off the debt.) It’s probably 3 trillion dollars just for the GWOT.

            There are many examples of skulduggery with the public treasury racking up bills in the name of ‘making things better’ and ‘making more investments and jobs’, but never getting the promised return-on-investment down the road. Instead, “everybody else’s” standard of living never benefits, just decays more and more, and the rich laugh all the way to the bank. I’m sure the rich would love a “flat tax”.

          • Skip Scott
            July 12, 2018 at 8:12 pm

            David-

            I think your underlying assumption that the rich would pay less with a flat tax may be erroneous. If there were no deductions, I suspect most of them would pay more unless the rate were below 15-20 pct. I could be wrong. Even with a flat tax, in terms of a dollar amount, the rich obviously pay more. With their special deductions, and the cap on wages assessed for social security tax, I suspect they pay less of a percentage of income than the working man today. Also capital gains are currently taxed at a lower rate than most wages, which obviously benefits the wealthy.

            The transfer of costs you speak of is already the reality today. And it is more than the current tax structure that makes it so. The tax payer currently subsidizes Walmart as many of their employees are on public assistance because they aren’t paid a living wage.

            I’m not saying I’m opposed to progressive taxation, I’m just saying there are many ways to obtain the same goal of a strong middle class and a fair and just society.

  6. mrtmbrnmn
    July 5, 2018 at 7:53 pm

    The Revolutionary War was not a Revolution by any Revolution standard. It was more akin to a War of Liberation. The 20th Century had more than a few of those. Most Wars of Liberation resulted in foreign rulers and bosses (British, French, Portuguese, German, even Italian and yes, American) being chucked out in order to be replaced by local rulers and bosses. The US Constitution is a fine, intelligent document, written by intelligent men. Full of myths and poetry. Kinda like The Bible (?). But not to be taken too literally or even all that seriously. Throughout history, the key to understanding politics and religion is and always has been “Follow The Money!”

  7. July 5, 2018 at 5:41 pm

    Philgrims had it messed up in the begining no respect for earth

  8. Al Pinto
    July 5, 2018 at 12:06 pm

    @Jean…

    “Just a reminder; Sanders would have won if not for the hated Hillary”

    Even if he did, it would not have made a difference; the POTUS does not make laws, Congress does, at least on paper…

    Just remember, Bernie did endorse RHC at the DNC. That probably had been the play all along during the primary. Sanders to woo in all of the “dissenters” and then turn them over to RHC, under the “unity” umbrella against Trump.

    I still “Feel the Burn”, the burn of the rigged system, don’t you?

    • Ronnie Mitchell
      July 5, 2018 at 9:03 pm

      It should be noted that, as revealed in Donna Brazile’s book, to run as a Democrat and have access to the Party’s operations (like polling data, rolls, background info of the makeup of voters in each area, etc.) the contract he signed stipulated that he must support whomever the winner might be in the Primary and he lived up to his word and obligation.
      Another part that needs to be clarified is that anyone that saw or heard any of events at which Sen Sanders appeared in support of the nominee he wasn’t praising Hillary, it was more about two things, first all the same things he had been preaching throughout his own campaign and secondly it was simply a call to stop Donald Trump.
      The system was rigged against him and his ideas, still is and if more people can be persuaded to attack Bernie Sanders the more people will be united against the policies he has fought for since the ’60s, verbatim,the proverbial ‘red herring’ very much like how the coordinated uproar over the release of the damning Podesta and Hillary emails has reached such a level it has drowned out the truths that were exposed in the cables. The contents are not discussed, they are lost and gone from the Public conversation.
      One fact is undeniable Bernie lit fires all over America, fires of real change at last and as Sen Bernie Sanders has said an innumerable number of times at rallies, it is ‘not about him’.

      • David Hamilton
        July 6, 2018 at 6:49 pm

        Yeah I don’t think the DNC rigged the system to get Bernie to eventually steer the ‘dissenters’ to HRC. They rigged the system against Bernie. After they cheated him, he didn’t rebel but instead honored his contract and endorsed the neocon HRC, who owned the DNC. (See the contents of the Wassermann-Schultz emails from the June 2016 “not-remote” hack.)

        • Skip Scott
          July 12, 2018 at 8:15 am

          Yes, it is quite obvious from the emails that the DNC conspired against Bernie. However, if Bernie had any balls, he would have called them out at the convention. His promise to support the democratic primary winner should have been contingent on a fair process. In his not “rebelling”, he in effect abandoned all his hard working supporters. He expected them to cave to the cheating Clinton machine along with him, and it didn’t happen. He could have taken Jill Stein up on her offer, made it to the TV debates, and blew up the entirely corrupted two party system. Because of his cowardice, we’ve got Trump.

          • David Hamilton
            July 12, 2018 at 2:28 pm

            Yes, that’s really the way it was and how it should have been, Skip. I don’t like ganging up on Bernie, but I agree he should have denounced Hillary’s unfairness and joined with Jill Stein. He should have stood on the principle that if his competitor denied him a fair fight for the nomination, he was no longer under any obligation to endorse that opponent. The requirement would be null and void, certainly. He could have cited the content of the DNC “not-remote” hack, which proved the chicanery of Hillary’s DNC. I know Donald Trump would not have stood for such cheating; who keeps proving that having some nerve can get you somewhere these days.

    • July 6, 2018 at 1:46 am

      Absolutely!

      Sanders certainly got closer than anybody in my lifetime and pushed lefty policies most democrats want.

      It isn’t the first time that the democrats stole the nomination from a left of center candidate, but it did hurt the party overall.
      It will come back to haunt them,it has already started.The DNC has gotten fewer donations and money than republicans in the age of Trump.

      Doesn’t bode well for the party

  9. Al Pinto
    July 5, 2018 at 11:51 am

    What do you expect, when the US had withdrawn from a number of UN organization. Most recently the US had withdrawn from the UN Human Rights Commission:

    https://passblue.us4.list-manage.com/track/click?u=5d5693a8f1af2d4b6cb3160e8&id=4ced7bddbe&e=17d4523eb2

    Certainly, citizens of the US do not need stinking human rights, right?

  10. July 5, 2018 at 11:01 am

    In 1776, the enemy of “corporate rule” was the pure idea of the American Revolution,freedom and individual rights, including property rights. It took a century for the root of this to be undermined, to reinstate collectivist thinking. The fatal poison at the root was … Progressivism.

    Progressives created the means for oligarchy, let loose the dogs, now they scream about it like babies with colic.

    • rgl
      July 5, 2018 at 12:52 pm

      The Constitution, and the Bill of Rights were NOT inclusive documents. Both of these papers were written by, and for rich landowners. Slavers, in short. The writers did not believe that ‘the people’ were intelligent enough to contribute to government. The ‘Founding Fathers’ comprised the original oligarchy.

      Money (land and slaves) was the basis of political power in the 17th century. Funny that. The more things change the more they stay the same.

      • July 5, 2018 at 2:07 pm

        “Contributing to government” is a Progressive concept. The Founders were not eager to compel or convince everyone to “contribute to government.” They were eager for everyone* to live free of government control, or anyone’s control.

        The history of mankind was authoritarian control of individuals. The true power of the American Revolution was to prevent it.

        *Yes, I know, slavery. Well, Jefferson wanted to obliterate slavery, but others deleted his anti-slavery paragraphs from the Declaration.

        • Mild - ly Facetious
          July 5, 2018 at 4:03 pm

          John Donohue, “America is a corporatist oligarchy dressed in drag doing a bad impression of a bipartisan democracy.”
          ()

          The “corporate rule” in 1776 was the viciously greedy British East India Company. – Today it’s the billionaire Corporate Donors that Buy and/or Pay for propitious/favorable legislative outcomes have successfully bankrolled their way into Shot-Calling Power.

          This 21st century “son” of the East India Company (American Billionaires) must somehow be overthrown in a New Revolutionary War based on the same “we won’t take this anymore” sentiment that motivated those Americans in 1776.

          The new/now problem is the figurehead of Donald J.Trump as the 21st century version of King George of England. Please remember/never forget, his (Trump’s) first Rule-of-Law passed was the Massive Tax Cut for Billionaires,(The OwnershipSociety).

          Eli Yale morphed into Cecil Rhodes and has REAPPEARED in the Guise of Citizens United (Combined Billionaires) and the Personage of Donald J. Trump /\ (a 21st century appellation of George, The King). —

          Whose presence in the personage of Trump represents the Restoration Of Power into The “Rightful Hands” of Aristocrats, Autocrats, and families of (purported) Wealth. Trump is a harlequin in the Mansions of the Koch brothers and Eric Prince, and Bankers, etc, …

          American greed continues, unabated — We are as parasites, prospering off sales of weapons to avaricious nations for wars we agitate, instigate or create to invigorate the sale of weapons-of-destruction and to propagate hate within tribal cultures… .

          We are the Last Empire and Trump is Progenitor of … Instincts and their Vicissitudes …find “Oh Places You’llGo”/ Dr Suess.

    • Mild - ly Facetious
      July 5, 2018 at 5:30 pm
    • Gene Poole
      July 6, 2018 at 12:52 am

      Do progressives (or should it be capitalised?) have something in their genetic make-up that makes them progressives? If you place a label on them, you have to be prepared to place a label on yourself. What would that label be?
      Or is it events and living conditions that make us what we are? When you say that progressives “let loose the dogs,” what are you referring to? Perhaps the the fact that over the past fifty years or so, in terms of objective, observable statistics, wealth has concentrated in the hands of a small minority, and continues to concentrate, to a point where it has never been so concentrated since – oh, since the end of the 19th century, the time of the robber barons… more or less the time when you say that the root of freedom and property rights was undermined. In fact it was the freedom and property rights of the oligarchy that were being undermined.
      Yet you say that “progressives” and “collectivist thinking” created the means for oligarchy. Humans are social, collectivist animals. Oligarchy goes back much farther than the “collectivist” thinkers I am sure you have in mind and whom you are attempting to blame for the existence of oligarchy. Oligarchy began when the first human realised he could use violence to dominate other human beings, and continued up to and beyond the American and French and other revolutions of the 18th century, which did not abolish oligarchy but simply hand it from one dominant class to another.

      Rather than try to blame someone, we should be reflecting on the force behind the concentration of wealth that is now reaching historic heights and serving as the means to again concentrate the power of the oligarchy, as Ms. Johnstone points out so well. Or, if you insist in blaming someone, you are going to have a very hard time developing your argument that “progressives” are the ones to blame. But please go ahead.

      • Skip Scott
        July 6, 2018 at 8:02 am

        Very well argued Gene. I would love to hear John’s counter-argument as well.

      • Mild - ly Facetious
        July 6, 2018 at 12:29 pm

        Definition of progressive

        1 a : of, relating to, or characterized by progress
        b : making use of or interested in new ideas, findings, or opportunities
        2 : of, relating to, or characterized by progression
        3 : moving forward or onward : advancing
        ___________________________________

        Definition of retrogressive

        1 : moving or tending backwards
        2 : reverting to an inferior condition
        3 : a return to an earlier or less complex condition.
        __________________________________

        examples – Trump pulling out of Paris Accord and EPA regulations
        ————- Trump Attacking Affirmative Action
        ————- Trump’s Undoing Project of All Things Obama

        • Mild - ly Facetious
          July 6, 2018 at 12:42 pm

          The anti-Obama: Trump’s drive to destroy his predecessor’s legacy

          From the Iran deal to TPP to climate change, ‘the whole thing that animates and unites his policy views is antipathy towards Obama’
          (excerpt)

          David Smith

          Donald Trump advertised his ambitions to dismantle Barack Obama’s achievements throughout the election campaign.
          When Donald Trump pulled out of the deal to curb Iran’s nuclear ambitions, hardline conservatives celebrated, European leaders winced and Barack Obama made a rare, lengthy public statement.

          It was just the latest example of Trump’s all-out assault on the Obama legacy. From climate change to criminal justice to international relations, rarely has one occupant of the Oval Office appeared so obsessed with taking a chainsaw to the work of another.

          Tommy Vietor, a former national security council spokesman under Obama, told the Guardian: “The whole thing that animates and unites his policy views is antipathy towards Obama. It’s fucking pathetic. He’s a vindictive person so there is an element of this that is about sticking it to Obama. He knows, probably better than anyone, how to find all the Republican erogenous zones because he spent years whipping people into a frenzy and telling lies about Obama.”

          From the start, it has been hard to imagine two men more different than Obama, 56, a mixed-race intellectual married to one woman for a quarter of a century, and Trump, 71, a white, thrice married businessman and reality TV star who has boasted about grabbing women’s private parts. One reads books voraciously; the other, it is said, barely reads at all

          • Gregory Herr
            July 6, 2018 at 10:35 pm

            And what a fine legacy it is!

            Bankers make out like bandits while struggling homeowners, students, and workers feel the shaft.
            Accountability and “transparency” take on decidedly Orwellian meanings as “classification” becomes even more routine and honest whistleblowers are chilled to the bone.
            The National Security State becomes more deeply entrenched as the Constitution is whittled away, surveillance becomes ubiquitous, extrajudicial drone killings multiply, and dubious “terror” threats or “”attacks” make headline news.
            Actual healthcare reform is sideswiped by the Obamacare quarter-measures that put off real needed change indefinitely.
            The carnage of perpetual dirty wars continues unabated. What was done in Iraq, Libya, Syria, and Yemen under the watch of Obama and his cackling miscreant of a Secretary of State is beyond abominable.
            Ukraine gets a coup…and Russia is senselessly demonized, sanctioned, and threatened. Obama kicks out diplomats and says stupid things about Russia.
            The intelligence agencies become extraordinarily politicized while Obama pokes holes in necessary NSA filters and sets up an agency to combat “fake news” (a war on information and freedom of speech).
            The Democratic Party gets a real knack for losing….but become the world’s worst sore losers and worst opposition party imaginable when their Queen of Chaos is denied her throne.

            I’d say we need an anti-Obama. Trump may be different…but he’s certainly not different enough.

            Thanks Obama…what a fine legacy!

          • Gregory Herr
            July 9, 2018 at 8:17 pm

            https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-02-18/jay-sekulow-obama-should-be-held-accountable-soft-coup-attempt-against-trump

            While previously the N.S.A. filtered information before sharing intercepted communications with another agency, like the C.I.A. or the intelligence branches of the F.B.I. and the Drug Enforcement Administration, and furthermore N.S.A.’s analysts passed on only information they deemed pertinent, screening out the identities of innocent people and irrelevant personal information, following passage of Obama’s 11th hour rule, “other intelligence agencies will be able to search directly through raw repositories of communications intercepted by the N.S.A. and then apply such rules for “minimizing” privacy intrusions.”

            “In other words, what until recently was a trickle of private data captured about US individuals by the NSA with only a handful of people having full, immersive access, suddenly became a firehose with thousands of potential witnesses across 16 other agencies, each of whom suddenly became a potential source of leaks about ideological political opponents. And with the universe of potential “leaking” culprits suddenly exploding exponentially, good luck finding the responsible party.”

          • Skip Scott
            July 12, 2018 at 8:00 am

            Thank you Gregory Herr!

            Mildly’s willful blindness regarding Obomber and Killary drives me nuts. The facts be damned, it’s all the evil Trump’s fault.

      • July 7, 2018 at 12:49 am

        “the concentration of wealth …the means to again concentrate the power of the oligarchy…” Wrong: unhealthy “concentration of wealth” is a result, not a cause. The power establishment is rich because they are crafty in gaming a sick game, one in which the loud voices of Progressives gave them permission. Put another way: those gaming the system to become obscenely wealthy embrace their “partner” … the regulatory state as dreamed up by Progressives.

        The Progressive movement let loose the dogs of cartelism, which Progressives consider the Great Evil. It is the toxic combination of “favoritism businessmen” [aka dogs] in bed with a government on a mission to regulate business prior to it committing any infringements, stifle capital formation, destroy hard money, and aggregate power to itself, in strength, size, and ferocity. The dogs can survive and thrive with under heavy regulation, confiscatory taxation, fiat money, because they connive with the political establishment. Honest entrepreneurs cannot.

        “… something in their genetic make-up…”] I won’t psychologize Progressives in a forum. It’s up to Progressives to self-examine for that. I won’t say why they are so inclined, rather confine myself to criticize their professed philosophy and actions.

        As for myself, I have a label. I am an Objectivist. The political philosophy of Objectivism is the individual as sovereign and free, with government’s sole purpose to rectify violations of each person’s individual rights, including property. The natural course for a nation under this concept is capitalism. NOT oligarchic, cartel capitalism, but free exchange between people.

        Naturally, I’ve heard every possible screed, scream, and wail about “the concentration of wealth.” Ask yourself, would you really rather live in a nation where the incentive to achieve great things, usually accompanied by concentration of capital, is free [not free to do harm, I suggest you avoid that avenue in this discussion] to explode the human race forward, or an egalitarianized mediocrity?

        • July 7, 2018 at 5:02 pm

          Explode the human race forward to what–self destruction? Egalitarianismized mediocrity is a meaningless phrase. Who knows what the human race could achieve if we were not pitted against each other for survival?

          • July 9, 2018 at 9:27 pm

            On the contrary, everyone knows what I mean by “egalitarianized mediocrity.” Take a handful of the most fully socialistic nations, such as Sweden, Uruguay, Canada, etc. These nations only support tiny populations, and people there simply stroll through their life having most of their “income” taken in taxes in return for cradle-to-grave security.

            Excuse me if this offends the mild, but this is mediocrity. Not to mention the extent to which many such nations only function financially because of selling oil and minerals to the Apollonian giants of industry, innovation, and productivity.

            Collectivist systems compel everyone to be bound legally to one another for survival. Freedom and individual rights, on the contrary, provide a clear and open vista for the strivers on all levels.

      • KB Gloria
        July 11, 2018 at 1:58 pm

        Thank you, John–well put. This individual rights mythology is just so much propaganda. People banded together to avoid the tyranny of the selfish, greedy and ruthless in any age or era. Individual rights? Go off, be a hermit, do your own thing without compromise—but you cannot be allowed to disrupt resources or systems that provide for the rights of everyone else—-and good luck to you!

        • July 14, 2018 at 11:13 am

          @KB Gloria

          Individual rights a “mythology?”

          Au contraire, it has cooked your breakfast.

          P.S. Gloria, do any of your “systems that provide…” require coercive taking of property from person A to distribute to person B? Because if they do, that is the tyranny of the selfish, greedy and ruthless collectivists.

    • July 6, 2018 at 1:49 am

      It’s republicans that pushed for corporations rule and oligarchy.

    • Brad Anbro
      July 6, 2018 at 8:03 am

      I believe that you are very much mistaken about “progressives” – at least, REAL progressives, anyway. Our country had REAL progressives in the past…Robert LaFollette from Wisconsin; John F. Kennedy; Robert F. Kennedy; Martin Luther King, Jr. and
      Walter Reuther, president of the United Auto Workers, just to name a few. NONE of these individuals did anything to “pave the
      way for oligarchy. They were all for the working man (and woman).

      If you took the time to read about Walter Reuther, you would find that he had many wonderful, progressive ideas. Had they been
      allowed to be implemented, this country would be much better off than it is today. Walter Reuther was for ALL working people,
      not just for union members or white people.

      But “they” killed him, just as “they” killed JFK, RFK, MLK and Malcolm X. The Big Money Interests (the major U.S. corporations,
      the major U.S. and foreign multi-national corporations and the banks & financial industry) bought and paid their own way to the
      oligarchic and fascist state that the United States has become today. It was NOT due to any REAL “progressives.”

  11. Ergo Sum
    July 5, 2018 at 7:32 am

    @Jean…

    Just a reminder; Sanders would have won if not for the hated Hillary”

    It would not have made any difference, even if he did. The POTUS does not make laws, Congress does.

    You should not forget that Sanders endorsed RHC at the DNC. His purpose during the primary has been to channel all of democrats with social, economic and political dissatisfaction to Hillary at the end. “Feel The Burn”, the burn of the rigged system. It is another example of how the rigged system allows minor uprising to flourish for a while, and then crush it at the end by the perceived front-runner of the movement. The movement is dead, voters are further disillusioned that enforces the viewpoint of there’s nothing that peaceful action can do to change the system. This results in even less people showing up at the voting booth to cast their votes, that the rigged system loves; it does not need to disenfranchise voters and easier to predetermine the outcome any of the upcoming elections.

    Happy Birthday America, the home of the free and the brave… You are free to rig the system, if you are brave enough…

  12. Tom
    July 5, 2018 at 5:58 am

    America was formed/founded by White men seeking fame, fortune and power outside the existing European political power structure. From its’ beginning, it has been a nation of migrants seeking this kind of fortune – bugger those damn savages that get in the way of this greed and desire to take land, resources and culture away from America’s native inhabitants. And so it began this way and has continued unabated for more than the life of the nation which began in 1776 – more than 240 years of expansionism, colonization and subjugation of those less powerful – too take away the land and resources of not just the native American Indians, but later the peoples of Cuba, Philippines, Japan, China and on to the World Wars, late 20th century wars in Iraq, Yugoslavia, Afghanistan, Libya, Syria, Yemen and on and on an on – continuous warfare and expansionism of the American Empire to take away land, resources and power of the native inhabitants of every nation the US targets for regime change or conquest. You can talk all you want about political systems, which is better or how to corral the oligarchs who rule America, but what I’ve described is America and the world will never have peace or prosperity until the American Empire ends and the whole world can then celebrate American Independence Day – the Day when the rest of the world is Independent from the Evil Empire.

  13. GMC
    July 5, 2018 at 5:17 am

    Hard to have a Fourth of July celebration when your Bill of Rights and Constitution have been Trashed.

  14. Anonymous
    July 5, 2018 at 3:43 am

    Marxists (and much of the broader. “Lest) have always maintained that the capitalist mode of production – and the bourgeois-democratic political superstructure it necessitates – represented an immense revolutionary achievement in the course of human development.

    • Anonymous
      July 5, 2018 at 12:25 pm

      Casting aside the last vestiges of the feudal system, particularly hereditary monarchy and titles of nobility, was critical to the eventual move toward a more equitable system of political economy.

      The reactionary system of corporate rule that we see today is a result of the bourgeoisie and capitalist system having (long) outlived their historically progressive role. However, that does not minimize the fact that in relation to the prior system (I.e. feudalism and monarchy), the US capitalist bourgeois-democratic form of political economy was a great achievement.

  15. b.grand
    July 5, 2018 at 2:17 am

    A Petition for Julian Assange was started July 1. There’s a time limit to get enough signatures to require an official response, so it really needs to pick up steam. To defend freedom of speech and the press, please sign and promote to your friends.

    https://petitions.whitehouse.gov/petition/drop-charges-and-allegations-well-grand-jury-against-julian-assange-and-wikileaks

    The relentless attacks on Assange and Wikileaks threatens the future of a free press that is the bulwark of democracy.
    Drop Charges and Allegations As Well As Grand Jury

    • Skip Scott
      July 5, 2018 at 7:02 am

      Thanks for this. I forwarded it to some folks too.

      • b.grand
        July 5, 2018 at 6:07 pm

        Thanks, Skip. This petition is off to a very slow start. Are people too cynical, or just too apathetic? Are those who won’t petition the government the same ones who urge us not to vote? How do they propose we defend our rights?

        Thanks, again.

        • zendeviant
          July 7, 2018 at 8:41 am

          Be careful of the WH petition site.

          A few years ago I was involved in a petition regarding the numbers on either side of ten. The petition that I signed couldn’t be bookmarked on my computer. All sorts of weird stuff happened with my computer. I think the vote count was boogered with. I came to the very sad conclusion that the site was tampered with, more intelligence collection than any sort of activism.

          I am not apathetic, but am resisting the cynicism. I vote merely to exercise the privilege, not because I think it compels the government in any way. I read a lot of Solzhenitsyn and I have come to the conclusion that resistance is tantamount to prayer.

          “What I say to you I say to all: ‘Stay awake!'”

          • Skip Scott
            July 7, 2018 at 11:59 am

            Hi Zen-

            I signed it a few days ago, and my computer seems fine. They do send you an email that you have to respond to in order to confirm your signature. I got malware bytes on my computer after I mistakenly downloaded a Flash player upgrade that was not what it seemed. I’m sure they already have me slated for the re-education camp, along with most of the commenters on this site. I figure WTF at this point.

    • Sam F
      July 6, 2018 at 7:46 am

      signed.

  16. Mukadi
    July 4, 2018 at 10:24 pm
    • Joe Tedesky
      July 5, 2018 at 12:02 am

      “Looking back on it, I might have given Al Capone a few hints. The best he could do was to operate his racket in three districts. I operated on three continents.” Major General Smedley Butler

      Good on you Mukadi for posting this link. PCR did a great analogy of our American war culture. Joe

    • robjira
      July 5, 2018 at 2:23 pm

      Excellent essay; thanks for sharing the link.

  17. July 4, 2018 at 9:49 pm

    It’s a knee-jerk celebration, anyway, for the most part. The citizens are told to celebrate, so they celebrate. Just like Thanksgiving, Christmas, Valentine’s Day, the Fourth of July is a day to generate money. The firecrackers are popping right now, a worship of the warship that the US has become.

  18. July 4, 2018 at 9:47 pm

    Caitlin, I just finished reading an article that I think you would love. “The Birth of Predatory Capitalism “at Eudaimonia and Co: https://eand.co/how-predatory-capitalism-imploded-the-future-6a6396b8f2fc

  19. July 4, 2018 at 8:37 pm

    Much of my time is spent reading commentary that I agree with and articles I agree with. Something to consider for the website, descriptive articles yes but more prescriptive ones. For example, articles by people who have ideas for change, addressing important policy questions like taxation, health insurance, technology stuff like robotics and how to spread its benefits. and of course, reform of the process of selecting and electing our leaders. Just a thought.

  20. George Lane
    July 4, 2018 at 6:41 pm

    Thanks to Caitlin Johnstone for her writing, it is a shame that Counterpunch denied her the right to reply on their website. It is indicative I think of this insular attitude amongst some leftists where “this person is not one of us, therefore we should attack them and discredit them”.

    Let us keep in mind, that Counterpunch, wonderful and eye-opening publication that it is, which has been fundamental to my own intellectual development, refuses to give Ms Johnstone a platform while giving a platform to such Marxists as Louis Proyect and Franklin Lamb who will ridicule and dismiss RT as a source while citing The Guardian in their articles, and who, as to my knowledge, have never directly addressed the mountains of evidence pointing to the White Helmets being an obvious Western-funded propaganda operation who only operate (and only treat, according to several Syrian civilians interviewed by Eva Bartlett and Vanessa Beely, among others, who will surely be dismissed by Proyect and Lamb as being “conspiracy theorists” or “Assad apologists”) in “rebel” (read al-Nusra, ISIS, Jayesh al-Islam) held territories .

  21. Kenny
    July 4, 2018 at 5:43 pm

    I can’t disagree with this articles premise that capitalism has it’s flaws but I also contend that socialism has just as sordid a track record with it’s own set of oligarchs.

    • Gene Poole
      July 6, 2018 at 12:59 am

      Invalid comparison. Capitalism shouldn’t be judged by its flaw’s any more than socialism should.

      • Kenny
        July 6, 2018 at 12:10 pm

        Why not?

        • July 6, 2018 at 4:38 pm

          Kenny and Gene-the word abuses instead flaws might have been better. Not necessarily agreed to by everyone, but capitalism as an economic system is even used by China to energize its economy. The abuses, of course, are many notably the concentration of wealth and the failure or unwillingness of three branches of government to do anything about it.

          • Kenny
            July 8, 2018 at 12:15 am

            Thanks for the recommendation but after further thought I need to not only reject that but my initial assertion to flaws. I now believe whatever ‘ism’ is working as designed. Recognizing that every ‘ism’ was established by those that wanted control and profit/power (aka elites/oligarchs) and that the only real benefit to the rest of us was an illusion where all we are left with is debating over which word best describes our demise… yeah working as designed.

  22. July 4, 2018 at 4:41 pm

    Horrendous global economic conditions require new economic thinking that improves the health and well-being of the most number of people. Economist and author Henry George (1839-1897) nailed it decades ago in his multi-million copy, bestselling 1879 book “Progress and Poverty” – the “single tax” or land value tax.

    Consortium News would do humanity a great service by bringing the writings of Henry George economic philosophy advocates to readers and CN’s massive group of supporters around the world. For example, an excellent guest writer suggestion is Henry George expert, confirmed enthusiast, and author of many books on the subject, Mr. Fred Harrison.

    System-wide implementation of Henry George economic principles addresses the real concerns raised by Caitlin Johnstone and so many others in this time of unprecedented wealth inequality, faulty economics, the new royals called corporate oligarchs, seeming endless war, and the great societal problems manifested as a consequence.

    Peace.

  23. Drew Hunkins
    July 4, 2018 at 4:28 pm

    Jefferson was very old when he first saw the fledgling stages of early corporate power, they called them “moneyed incorporations” or something like that. Jefferson warned that these new “moneyed incorporations” had the potential power to undermine everything the revolution accomplished.

  24. John2o2o
    July 4, 2018 at 4:18 pm

    Sigh. I know I’m probably wasting my time saying this as Caitlin’s groupies will not tolerate criticism of their anointed one.

    The United States did not win independence from George III. Since 1689 the UK/Great Britain has been a CONSTITUTIONAL MONARCHY. (Now go look that up to see what it means.) That means that Parliament does not answer to the monarch. Period.

    “In the Kingdom of England, the Glorious Revolution of 1688 led to a constitutional monarchy restricted by laws such as the Bill of Rights 1689 and the Act of Settlement 1701, although limits on the power of the monarch (‘a limited monarchy’) are much older than that (see Magna Carta). At the same time, in Scotland the Convention of Estates enacted the Claim of Right Act 1689, which placed similar limits on the Scottish monarchy.” wikipedia.

    George III was America’s eighteenth century Putin. Someone they blame for all their problems, but who is not actually responsible for any of them. Americans, like their precious Second Amendment will not grow up and move on.

    I know it suits some of you to believe that somehow the royals are super powerful, but they are not. They don’t call the shots and haven’t done so now for over 300 years.

    • Joe Lauria
      July 4, 2018 at 4:43 pm

      “War began in 1775 and was prolonged in 1779, *at the king’s insistence,* to prevent copycat protests elsewhere. The British defeat in 1781 prompted North to resign. In 1783, North and the prominent Whig politician Fox formed a coalition government. Their plans to reform the East India Company gave George the chance to regain popularity. He *forced the bill’s defeat* in Parliament, and the two resigned. In their place George *appointed* William Pitt the Younger.”

      George blocked legislation and he appointed the first minister, i.e. he had power over parliament.

      http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/historic_figures/george_iii_king.shtml

    • Deniz
      July 4, 2018 at 5:07 pm

      On behalf of this side of the pond, I would like to formally apoligize for calling Mr. Blair, Mr. Bush’s poodle. I am also certain that Ms. Skripal, sorry Ms. May, with her fiery independence, is nobody’s poodle either.

      • Tom
        July 5, 2018 at 5:42 am

        R U kidding me? Ms. May is a poodle for the UK’s intelligence agencies i.e. MI5 and MI6. The swift movement of her to get on board with the totally discredited blaming of Novichok and Putin/Russia for the nerve agent attack on the Skripals means she is very evil – she’s following the lead of the UK’s evil intelligence agencies which are waging a psychological and economic war on Russia and Putin just because the oligarchs in the West don’t like Putin doing good things for Russia.

        • Deniz
          July 6, 2018 at 12:27 pm

          That was sarcasm.

    • cal
      July 4, 2018 at 6:17 pm

      The Continental Congress was primarily frustrated with Parliament, a resent that had been brewing since the conclusion of the Seven Years War. But, at the same time, royalist enthusiasm had been budding, with an increasing obsession within the colonies of being faithful servants of the crown. Thus, the Congress styled their petitions to the monarch, hoping he would quash his evil ministers, with George III being the hoped for “patriot king”. When George attacked the colonies, and began efforts to crackdown on political unrest, the otherwise unpopular and extreme option of independence became feasible. George was not an absolute monarch or a tyrant, but he did have significant power, and he could, if he played parliamentary politics well enough, get his way. The Glorious Revolution did not disempower the monarchy or firmly establish parliamentary power, both of these phenomena began both before and after the events of 1688.

    • Brad Owen
      July 5, 2018 at 4:20 am

      The establishment of the Central Bank in City-of-London in 1694 or thereabouts, when William of Orange crossed the English Chanel, along with his retinue of immigrant Venetian banksters from the Netherlands, is the one pertinent fact worth remembering. THIS is what the Founders actually declared their independence from, establishing the National Bank in the process (which was shut down relatively quickly thereafter, by agents loyal to City-of-London Central Bank). Independence has been a farce from the beginning and we never had our Republic, let alone keeping it, as Benjamin Franklin had warned us would be the problem. We’ve had a phony Republic based on the model supplied by Venice (and established by Venetian “Dutch Masters”in The Netherlands in the 17th century) throughout the Medieval/Renaissance eras. It is the same old, ongoing, Citizens’ Republic vs Oligarchs’ Empire fight that Western Civilzation inherited from Roman times.

      • Brad Owen
        July 6, 2018 at 12:14 pm

        And having Monarchs at this late date only further muddies the Waters of Clarity. Even the Roman citizens of 2500 years ago had the good sense to throw out their Etruscan Kings and Queens on their ears, and establish a Republic, an assembly of the Senate and people of Rome to conduct business of concern to the whole Public (S.P.Q.R.).

    • Gene Poole
      July 6, 2018 at 1:02 am

      Agreed. They are simply very wealthy people who have the power that accompanies wealth, but they fall far short of the real money – even if they can get a king or two to come to their kids’ weddings.

  25. July 4, 2018 at 4:04 pm

    Whether one envisages the traditional concept of royalty with precious stones-studded crowns and all the “royal” trapping, pomp and circumstance or multi-billionaire corporate tax-evading mega-moguls, the groups are essentially the same. Wealth inequality on Earth, ironically and sadly, has grown while so-called “royalty” as a visible phenomenon has slowly diminished. The problems associated with record concentration of wealth on Earth have grown in equal proportion, to the point where people are starting to consider newer, potentially more beneficial economic thought and viable alternative systems.

    The ideas of economist and author of “Progress and Poverty” – HENRY GEORGE (1839-1897) “Single tax” proponent (or “land value tax”) – are both disappointingly under-discussed and under-appreciated, while offering precisely the economic alternative for effectively dealing with today’s orthodox economy-centric global, societal problems. People might take the time in researching Henry George’s ideas when they understand (only one of many benefits) that implementation of Georgist economic principles means no more income tax taken out of their paychecks …

    Consortium News (CN) is the perfect platform for support of Henry George economic thought and raising awareness of an idea whose time may just have arrived. We might suggest Consortium News publish the writings of Henry George expert and author of many books on the subject Mr. Fred Harrison, who would likely happily provide his impressive writings for free.

    We might also suggest the many millions of men and women from all regions of the Earth reading Consortium News consider finding out more on Henry George economic thought, do the researching, then understand the economic philosophy’s virtually immeasurable, positive and transforming potential.

    Source information search suggestion: Henry George School of Social Science.

    Peace.

  26. KiwiAntz
    July 4, 2018 at 4:03 pm

    I think America & American’s would have been better of remaining a British Colony until such a time as it was ready for its Independence, which it wasn’t in the year 1776! A better form of Govt based on the Westminster model would have instilled a more fairer model than this Republic Govt, which despite claiming to be a Govt of the People, for the peoplevwas a complete lie? The founding fathers who wrote the Constitution were rich, slave owning elites! The Republic model always benefits the rich & powerful not the poor! If you look at other Countries colonised by the British, with the exception of some African nations, they left rather stable, Obligarchy free Countries despite the Royals influence! And the Nations I’m talking about, former British colonies such as NZ, Australia & Canada who all went on to form stable Govts with strong social systems such as a social safety net, universal healthcare, livible wages etc with relatively low corruption in Corporate governance & low Political cronyism as well! In other words they created more fairer & equal societies than the US! Contrast that with America’s brutal, privatised Obligarchy gutting the Nation for the benefit of a few elites with a corrupt Political & Corporate system with its Leaders bribed & paid off creating a modern Day medieval model of masters ruling over a serf & peasant class! Happy 4th of July America, not Independence Day but Oligarchy Dependence Day!

    • Kenny
      July 4, 2018 at 5:53 pm

      “Republic Govt, which despite claiming to be a Govt of the People, for the peoplevwas a complete lie” … you are so right on this point.

      “The founding fathers who wrote the Constitution were rich, slave owning elites!” … and again in the money.

      “The Republic model always benefits the rich & powerful not the poor!” …. what would make this statement true is understanding that any form of government is designed to enrich and sustain itself and it’s progenitors … just like those in Buckingham palace and Westminster

    • Joe Tedesky
      July 4, 2018 at 6:59 pm

      KiwiAntz, your post and Miranda’s below, are both enlightening in the perspective you use where America’s independence may have been a tad to premature. It’s an angle more Americans should explore. Let’s hope your critique of this American experiment encourages others to learn more of the truth. Trashing a narrative doesn’t mean you throw the baby out with the bath water, if the intended aim of telling the truth leads to a better, and fairer society. Great commentary KiwiAntz. Joe

    • July 4, 2018 at 9:52 pm

      “More Fairer” is not OK, it’s a grammatical error called “double comparison”

      • Skip Scott
        July 6, 2018 at 8:05 am

        George-

        You’re the bestest grammarian ever!

    • July 4, 2018 at 10:00 pm

      The Brits could have given each colony a rep or two in parliament and this might have done the trick….

  27. July 4, 2018 at 3:10 pm

    Just to let readers know that the notifications I receive from Consortiumnews have become more and more sporadic over the last few months, to the point I seem to have stopped receiving any at all. I just signed up again with a my secure protonmail email account. Protonmail have also advised me that their service is under attack. Call me paranoid, but I can assure you the full-out attack on freedom of speech is well underway and gathering speed.

  28. donna
    July 4, 2018 at 1:59 pm

    Brilliant!

  29. July 4, 2018 at 1:44 pm

    Great article by Caitlin Johnstone. She is clear-eyed about what’s going on. wish more people were. We have a revolution to fight but no fighters. Lover her wit, “America is a corporatist oligarchy dressed in drag doing a bad impression of a bipartisan democracy.”

  30. Joe Tedesky
    July 4, 2018 at 12:36 pm

    Okay so under the assumption that our American MSM is inadequate to delivering the news in a totally objective, and unbiased manner, I will ask you to how many Americans would you say go out of their way to dig deeper into the news? I don’t have a statiscal number, but through my daily walk through our U.S. countryside I find many, both liberal and conservative, to be informed only by the big Wurlitzer of noisy propaganda. So if we take this reality of low voter knowledge of issues pertaining to our nation’s well being into consideration, then it’s easy to see why citizens vote against their own interest, or they think the U.S. is superior to all other nations, and possibly throw in ethnicity and religious beliefs on top of that, as a motivator to boost this self centered attitude of denial.

    The question is what citizen serves their nation in a more patriotic sense of being? Is it the citizen who stands by every government edict, and directive, to be the more patriotic, or is the citizen who consistently finds fault in these edicts, and try’s to correct these wrongs the more patriotic?

    I find the citizen who buys into all of these edicts, and directives, to be very gullible, as they proudly wave flags while many die at the hands of the few who drive America to war, or who are the covert sponsors of such atrocities. On the other hand the American who by their diligent search into the real news, and who most definitely well know that America is hardly number one any longer in anything at this stage of our nation’s history, except for sponsoring war, to be the more valuable asset there is to running a true democracy, if democracy in the U.S. is even key any longer to dealing with the many hard issues of our time?

    Blind patriotism in my mind is a nation killer, whereas skeptical criticism is a nation builder. The sad part is the skeptic is considered unpatriotic, while the dumbed down flag waver is the truly great American. The more tragic aspect of all of this, is the dumbed down blind patriot is the honored hero, while the skeptic is the trader.

    • Joe Lauria
      July 4, 2018 at 3:05 pm

      Well put Joe. Happy Independence Day.

      • Joe Tedesky
        July 4, 2018 at 6:20 pm

        Thank you Joe. Joe Tedesky

    • July 4, 2018 at 7:26 pm

      Just grandma watches corporate media propaganda.

      Just a reminder; Sanders would have won if not for the hated Hillary

      Trump ran against the bush republicans and Gop and won against the hopes of the republican elite

      Trump is a middle finger to the bush republicans rule and Trump is also the least popular president in the history of the country

      Yet Trump is more popular than Hillary.

      Hillary even picked Trump.Tru
      Trump was Hillary’s pied piper.Only Hillary Clinton could cheat and lose to her own pied piper baboon.

      • Joe Tedesky
        July 4, 2018 at 9:35 pm

        Jean, you nailed it. Joe

        • July 7, 2018 at 6:02 pm

          Thanks…..I try.

    • Sam F
      July 4, 2018 at 10:54 pm

      Yes, “the skeptic is considered unpatriotic, while the dumbed down flag waver is the truly great American.”
      We have become susceptible to primitive tribalism due to the uniformity of control by oligarchy money, in mass media, political parties, and the workplace. Most are afraid to disagree and know the rewards come with conformity to the tribal dictates of mass media. Most cannot disagree anyway, with poor education, narrow knowledge, few sources, lack of interest, and inability to see the problems and causes. A truly free and diverse mass media would gradually bring them to awareness.

      • Joe Tedesky
        July 4, 2018 at 11:51 pm

        Thanks Sam I appreciate your input. I actually wrote this from a recent personal exchange I had with another person. You are right their education of our country, is based merely upon the modern American manifest destiny myth. It drives me crazy when this friend makes accusations without any quantified references to any real evidence of any kind to prove their statements validity. Such as this friend believes that America is the safest place for gays, yet when I asked if they had ever been to another country to observe this fanciful notion they purpose, their answer was no. No, but just say yes anyway, because we Americans are without a doubt indispensable as well as exceptional in all things related to civility, don’t you know?

        https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2017/03/what-you-need-to-know-about-lgbt-rights-in-11-maps/

        Thanks for your comment Sam. Joe

    • Dave P.
      July 6, 2018 at 3:23 am

      Great comments, Joe. Very true.

      • Joe Tedesky
        July 6, 2018 at 3:09 pm

        Thank you Dave, hope all is wel,with you. Joe

  31. Tristan
    July 4, 2018 at 12:10 pm

    Well put Caitlin. I’m sorry that what you have commented upon is mostly correct. I’m losing my religion. More whiskey please, I’m tired and I can’t find my way home.

  32. July 4, 2018 at 11:55 am

    An excellent analysis of the sordid mess we euphemistically refer to as our vaunted – “democracy.” Given the total control of information through MSM, combined with oligarchic attempts to censor and essentially “disappear” dissenting voices in alternative media, the vast majority of Americans are tethered to domestic and global “realities” by a very thin thread indeed. Americans and Westerners in general are lost in a matrix -like propaganda system of the like the world has never before seen. We’ve essentially replaced the mythic “divine right of kings” and the “infallibility of the pope” with the equally mythic divine “rights of corporations” and the infallibility of the “invisible hand of the market.” Strange how that “invisible hand” can always be found wrapped tightly around the throats of the world’s poor everywhere and anywhere.

    Challenging these myth systems with truthful counter-narratives is as heretical today as it was a thousand years ago in the West, while those oligarchic controlled institutions enforcing our current myth systems are just as greedy, violent, amoral and blood thirsty as they were during the height of the Holy Inquisition. The myths have changed, but the dynamics of absolute power through the control of societal myth systems remains unchanged. As Derrick Jensen has pointed out most Americans can more easily imagine the end of the world than they can imagine the end of capitalism. This is “brain-washing” of the highest order indeed.

    • Lois Gagnon
      July 4, 2018 at 5:19 pm

      Well put. Changing the narrative has to be our highest priority.

      • Sam F
        July 6, 2018 at 7:29 am

        Very true.

      • David Hamilton
        July 6, 2018 at 3:34 pm

        Absolutely

    • zhenry
      July 4, 2018 at 10:43 pm

      Divine right, infalibility of Pope and Kings over the poor 99% / Divine right and infalibility of corporations and the invisible hand of the market over the 99%. Thank you

      • zhenry
        July 4, 2018 at 10:50 pm

        Should add ‘Divine right and infallibility over a world nobody can live in.

    • Dave P.
      July 6, 2018 at 11:26 am

      Gary W. – Great post. Very true.

  33. July 4, 2018 at 11:51 am

    Reminds me of The Who song : “Won’t Get Fooled Again !”

    “Meet the new Boss, same as the old Boss”.

    “And parking on the left is now parking on the right”.

  34. Rob
    July 4, 2018 at 11:31 am

    It’s good to see Caitlin and her no holds barred writing back on Consortium News. Her hard hitting analyses are usually spot-on.

  35. rosemerry
    July 4, 2018 at 11:18 am

    Many important rights were fought for and won by earlier generations, and I think it was Ralph Nader who said that none have been won since 1970. Earnings for all but the rich have stagnated, long-established rights have been cast aside by the “courts of law”, national and State.
    As well as Jeffrey Clements’ “Corporations are not People” and his fight for the repeal of “Citizens’ United” (what happened to this surge of people power?) there is an excellent book by historian Nancy MacLean “Democracy in Chains” which traces the movement to deny rights to the people, except a select few, right up to the election of Donald J Trump. It is clear, fast-paced, well- referenced and very chilling. The last chapter, ‘Get Ready’ needs to be taken seriously by us all.

  36. hetro
    July 4, 2018 at 10:10 am

    Now reading Ralph Nader’s Crashing the Party, 2002, an account of his run for the presidency in 2000. Very enjoyable read. Things were very much as described by Caitlin back then, and have only gotten worse. I do fear that glib comments on “democracy as failed” have the wrong term in the phrase. It’s plutocracy that has failed, not democracy. Then again democracy requires a lot of work, including thinking and assessing, and continually working to improve the concept. The forefathers got the project started. A capitalist system that encourages hedonism is not going to help much. From Nader’s book I have been receiving, oddly, encouragement, in all the people he mentions who wanted change back then, and still do. I am grateful for Nader and Caitlin for expressing the reality of capitalism run amok so very effectively. I hope these efforts will influence further thinking.

  37. mike k
    July 4, 2018 at 10:04 am

    It’s really pretty simple: It’s the rich bastards ruining our world, stupid! Just keep that in mind and you will have the key to our brief, soon to be ended stay on a planet some of us call Earth.

  38. Nancy
    July 4, 2018 at 10:00 am

    Happy Birthday to the USA, born of genocide and raised on white supremacy. Go out and blow something up to celebrate. Drink lots of beer and eat some charred dead animals. God help the USA.

    • mike k
      July 4, 2018 at 10:07 am

      And I might add, go out and shoot some people you don’t know just because you are pissed off at the world. Show you are a real American!

  39. Dfnslblty
    July 4, 2018 at 9:34 am

    Excellent essay on this forgotten day.
    Keep writing and instigating!

  40. Unfettered Fire
    July 4, 2018 at 7:52 am

    The latest revolt has been the Revolt of the Elites these past 40 years:

    “Basically, the only reason we do not have good things like most other advanced countries have is because the greedy sociopaths running things for decades wanted our unlimited federal money for themselves.

    Unlimited money? HOW CAN THAT BE? Yes, since the 70s, they understood that the federal government could issue any amount of money for anything that is physically possible.* And they wanted that money for themselves instead of using our money for the good of all as directed by our Constitution (Article 1, Section 8).

    They devised the scam of privatization to get the money and TOOK IT GLOBAL, getting money from our country and many others that could issue money with almost no constraints (meaning that the constraint is ‘what is physically possible’, or put another way, real resources are the constraint).

    But of course they needed plausible LIES to dupe the public, right? And so they pretended that our federal money is finite and ‘like a household budget’ to dupe us so they could implement their scam. They lie about our national ‘debt’, for example; it is actually our NATIONAL SAVINGS ACCOUNT. They lie about having to raise taxes in order to have nice things. Every fearmongering thing they tell us is a LIE – about the deficit, about ‘can’t afford’, about ‘have to make cuts to some programs’, and on and on.”

    https://whatifitoldyouthis.blogspot.com/2018/07/privatization-biggest-scam-we-all-need.html

  41. Sam F
    July 4, 2018 at 7:02 am

    Caitlin refreshingly overlooks the distractions of US history between monarchy and oligarchy, the (1) early-federal-period unity around defense concerns, (2) pre-civil-war period of failed congressional debate, and (3) early-industrial emergence of the middle class. These should be ignored, because US history consists of failure of institutions and failure to fix them, and only distracted from the rise of oligarchy to prevent reform.

    If democracy is ever restored in the US, it must be stabilized by amendments to protect elections and mass media debate from economic power, better checks and balances within the government branches, purging the corrupt judiciary and Congress, monitoring of government officials for corruption, and regulation of business so that oligarchic bullies and scammers do not rise to control economic power.

    Only then can literature, media, education, and public interaction encourage moral community, and only then can public debate find the moral policies that honor the rights of all persons and seek justice for all.

    • Babyl-on
      July 4, 2018 at 8:07 am

      “Democracy” is an utter failure. You point this out clearly. Yet, it seems no progressive can accept that – democracy is an utter failure.

      The idea that the system of “democracy” is some sort of holy system, immutable and sacred is completely false. This is not the “end times” of history social and cultural evolution is taking place other systems are proving in the real world they can do a far better job of supporting their citizens than “democracy” ever has, not to mention that imperialism itself is under threat from these other systems – while every powerful “democracy” has been imperialist.

      We live in a multi-polar world now, the US no longer is the “global power” The US is not #1 in anything but slaughter. This is what “democracy” has done sense August 6,1945 SLAUGHTERED INNOCENT PEOPLE ALL OVER THE WORLD EVERY SINGLE DAY FOR 2.600+ DAYS with plans to continue indefinitely. I would not wish “democracy” on my worst enemy.

      Deep and fundamental changes are taking place the ideas of the Enlightenment were deeply flawed and have broken down, new ideas from other cultures are gaining in strength and showing their value to people everywhere.

      I’d just like to point out that over the 73+ years of US slaughter of tens of millions of innocent people were accompanied by “elections” every two years – so the democratic people of the US fully supported this continuous slaughter as being in their best interests (we kill “over there” in war – but we kill at home too stimulated by deeply and systemically held racism.)

      This slaughter machine we call government must be fully and completely dismantled, the great fortunes must be broken up – no ashes – no Phoenix.

      • Sam F
        July 4, 2018 at 9:08 am

        The problem is not democracy (the recognition that all humans have equal rights) but how democracy is structured; I noted some corrections needed.

        The governments of China and Russia are variants of democracy with advantages and problems. The democracies of Scandinavia work better in part for cultural reasons. But it is not difficult to do far better than ours and be democratic: the problem is getting there.

      • July 15, 2018 at 1:19 am

        “Democracy is the worst form of government, except for all the other forms.” Attributed to Winston Churchill.

        So what exactly do you consider to be better than democracy? Do you think that China, for instance, with its autocratic government and internet censorship, is preferable to democracy? I think they are forbidden to talk about the Tiananmen Square protests of 1989.

        And you don’t like the Enlightenment. Would you go back to the Middle Ages when the Catholic church ruled, and clamped down on any new knowledge that went against the Bible or teachings of the church, such as heliocentrism as taught by Galileo? Would you bring back the Inquisition?

    • Bob Van Noy
      July 4, 2018 at 9:05 am

      “If democracy is ever restored in the US,”. Sam F.

      Thank you, so true.

      Our contemporary problem as Citizens, as Sam F. duly notes, is a totally failed democracy. The graphic accompanying this excellent piece is also appropriate, as it too describes our total lack of input as supposed Citizens.

      It will be necessary to publicly demonstrate how America Failed, make specific accusations, and design an alternative, something not possible with our current failed state. In other words, a Truth and Reconciliation environment where the failures can adequately and freely be presented and responsibility assigned.

      • Bob Van Noy
        July 4, 2018 at 9:16 am

        Readers might enjoy this terrific reading list by Ralph Nader…

        https://www.commondreams.org/views/2018/07/03/recommendations-engrossing-summer-reading-and-viewing

      • Tristan
        July 4, 2018 at 12:05 pm

        I might add that we citizens of the U.S. are more often than not referred to by the media and government officials as consumers. An Orwellian shift that many haven’t even noticed, yet these two definitions are so completely different, while the consequence is the denuding of the meaning of what a citizen is and is replaced with the corporate ideal that a citizen is nothing more than a cog, a consumer, and in essence citizenship is irrelevant in a globalized oligarchy.

      • Sam F
        July 4, 2018 at 2:36 pm

        Yes, demonstration of the failures of US democracy is the essential first step to public understanding, along with public study of potential solutions, so that steps can be taken when the public is sufficiently aroused, to restore democracy.

  42. alley cat
    July 4, 2018 at 6:51 am

    We separated church and state, abolished slavery, and granted suffrage to women. Each of those advances in human rights was fought tooth, nail, and claw by tyrants and oligarchs.

    Today’s a good day to recall the famous words of one of the most courageous and eloquent of American patriots, Frederick Douglass, in a speech he gave on West India emancipation in 1857: “If there is no struggle there is no progress . . . . Power concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and it never will. Find out just what any people will quietly submit to and you have found out the exact measure of injustice and wrong which will be imposed upon them, and these will continue till they are resisted with either words or blows, or with both. The limits of tyrants are prescribed by the endurance of those whom they oppress.”

    And those wrongs include the wrongs we allow our government to impose on other peoples as well as on ourselves, as Martin Luther King declared in his Riverside Church speech in 1967: “I knew that I could never again raise my voice against the violence of the oppressed in the ghettos without having first spoken clearly to the greatest purveyor of violence in the world today—my own government.”

    • Silly Me
      July 4, 2018 at 9:47 am

      Actually, the problem is that the unity of those in power and the peasants broke when the underlying ideology stopped functioning. These days, peasant are offered nothing, not the American Dream, not even a place in Heaven, for their sacrifice.

      All those “advances” you mention were a one-way street to this end.

      There is no ideal form of government. Democracy is a scam, and possibly the most expensive form of government, but Aristotle’s “good king” functions only if the ideology works.(Aristotle despised democracy as the rule of the mob and the Constitution was theoretically meant to prevent that, but with hardly any of the Constitution left, one has to choose between corporate masters and mob rule. Oh, well, that is not even a choice, because the mob has been divided and compartmentalized.)

      No revolution has ever succeeded that started from the bottom. For a successful revolution, you need to convince your rulers that giving you handouts is good for them. The more they give, the more they can take back. Unfortunately, they have already destroyed America and are abandoning it in droves, but they are not yet done with the planet.

      • MarB
        July 4, 2018 at 11:36 pm

        “not even a place in Heaven, for their sacrifice”
        just the heartless illusory promise of endless vacuous consumption…accompanied by the requisite endless diversion from reality.

      • anon
        July 5, 2018 at 10:36 pm

        “Aristotle despised democracy as the rule of the mob and the Constitution was theoretically meant to prevent that”

        In Aristotle’s Politics he calls disorganized small democratic cities “democracies” versus those with constitutions, which he calls “republics,” but all modern democracies have constitutions. Indeed we have “hardly any of the Constitution left,” but perhaps the choice between “corporate masters and mob rule” could choose a mob led by reformers.

  43. July 4, 2018 at 5:27 am

    You know how conservatives like to pass legislation that does something that is against the interests of the people but they at the same time like to name that legislation with a name that is the exact opposite of what they are doing? So for instance legislation that would make it less likely to have clean air by letting corporations regulate themselves on air pollution is called “The Clean Air Act.”

    Well, this usage of Double-Speak is much older that George Orwell. You can find it in the writing of Thomas Jefferson that was signed by a bunch of plutocrats on July 4, 1776.

    I’m talking about, “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness. That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.”

    It would be laughable ironic if it wasn’t so tragic that a main reason so many of these plutocrats signed this document was because the British had proclaimed that all slaves of those in rebellion were free. Slaves were running away and joining the British cause.

    Another tragic reality is that another reason these plutocrats signed is because they had bought vast tracts of land west of the Alleghenies cheaply and expected to make a fortune selling it at high prices to lower class farmers desperate for land. They’d done this with no consideration for the people actually living on this land as they had for millennia and without any compensation to them. Instead states far away declared they owned this land and then sold it to the plutocrats. But the British had put a stop to it, saying that land was reserved for the tribes who lived there. These plutocrats were furious that the British were keeping them from becoming even richer as if the native people who’d never signed away their land mattered like they did.

    These ‘founding fathers’ were all hypocrites signing that document. They didn’t believe all men were really equal. They didn’t believe that Black Americans had a God given unalienable right to liberty. They didn’t believe that Native Americans had a God given unalienable to the pursuit of happiness or even to life.

    Plus they said that this was declaration to become independent of Britain was something the people were doing. They didn’t bother to consult the people. The reality is one third of the people were loyal and one third were neutral and only one third wanted to be independent. A lot of these loyal people fled north to Canada as soon as they could when it became the clear the ‘patriots’ were winning. That was a flood of immigrants in the 1780s.

    The final irony is that they claimed they were taking this action because of George’s unfair taxation. Guess what. The Tea Act that sparked revolt with the Boston Tea Party a few years earlier actually lowered taxes. Yes. It lowered taxes. But the plutocrats were upset because it also created a monopoly in the tea trade giving it to Londoners, leaving them out. They lied that it was about regular people being upset that they had to pay high taxes when what they were really upset about was that they didn’t get the contract that would have made them richer.

    But the bamboozled those regular poor folk to join their Continental Army and paid them in IOUs. How did they plan on paying those IOUs? Well, by the various states raising taxes. Unfortunately for those poor vets they didn’t get paid at first and they couldn’t pay their taxes unless they sold their IOUs for pennies on the dollar to rich speculators- the very same plutocrats who declared Independence because of taxes. Then they’d get paid the full amount of the IOUs.

    This scenario sounds exactly like the one in the document I quoted above from the Declaration, which purports that in that situation the people have a god given duty to rebel and change the government. What did these patriotic founding fathers do? They raised funds to buy a mercenary army to go and squash these rebels. They they broke the law to create a new constitution, filled with more Double-Speak about “We the People” and “general Welfare” and “Blessings of Liberty,” that created a stronger central government with the power to tax and a standing army so such rebellion could never happen again.

    Who am I talking about? I’m talking about Jefferson who was a slave owner. I’m talking about Adams who despised the idea of the ‘rabble’ and the ‘mob’ and as President passed laws to put in jail anyone who printed anything that was against his presidency. I’m talking about Washington who was “mortified beyond expression” about the rebels and declared that “mankind when left to themselves are unfit for their own Government.” I’m talking about Franklin whose view of natives was ““If it be the design of Providence to extirpate these Savages in order to make room for cultivators of the Earth, it seems not improbable that rum may be the appointed means.” If you don’t know, ‘extirpate’ means ‘to root out and destroy.’

    Think on this. If the British had won, there would have been no native genocide in the Ohio Country. Instead it might have been like Manitoba, where natives and settlers became one people and got their own province. If the British had won then slavery would have been outlawed in America when it was in the British Empire in 1833.

    Maybe there’s a reason Canada is a kinder nation with universal single payer healthcare and legal marijuana and it gave sanctuary to USA draft dodgers? Maybe because it wasn’t created like George Carlin tells us the USA was.

    “This country was founded by slave owners who wanted to be free. Am I right? A group of slave owners who wanted to be free, so they killed a lot of white English people in order to continue owning their black African people so they could wipe out the rest of the red Indian people and move West and steal the rest of the land from the brown Mexican people giving them a place to take off and drop their nuclear weapons on the yellow Japanese people. You know what the motto of this country ought to be? ‘You give us a color- we’ll wipe it out.'”

    • Joe Tedesky
      July 4, 2018 at 6:46 pm

      Wow Miranda you hit it out of the ball yard with your comment, well done. It is hard for America to reconcile all of its myths, as I’ve often quoted my beloved departed mother who always said, one lie only leads to another lie until the truth jumps up and bites you in the ass… your spot on commentary is a fantastic beginning to a readers journey towards them learning the truth. Thanks Miranda, you taught me something new today. Joe

      • July 4, 2018 at 8:40 pm

        Thanks, Joe.

        Most of the stuff I summarized is explained in better depth in a series of articles by Danny Sjursen over on Truthdig called “American History for Truthdiggers.”

        Also having read Zinn’s history is helpful. Plus I’m a big fan of Carlin. Do miss him. Not just his insight, but his cadence, which seemed to be flowing through me on that post.

        • Joe Tedesky
          July 4, 2018 at 9:27 pm

          Miranda your inspirational heroes are certainly appropriate for analyzing today’s current events. I like Major Daniel Sjursen for he is a soldier who has learned from his experiences, and he doesn’t sell the same old fluff we are used too. All in all you Miranda crafted this piece of fine commentary, and you should be congratulated for how you interpret what you have learned…. and look at you now, your teaching all of us to be critical thinkers when appraising our nation’s policies. Good post. Joe

    • Sam F
      July 5, 2018 at 10:28 pm

      Certainly an interesting skeptical view, one of the better I have read lately.

      I have a view of the founders as sincere in unresolved cognitive dissonance. This is supported by reading their work, which in no way celebrates or even countenances hypocrisy or exploitation.

      There were few natives per square mile, while indeed many poor Europeans could use the land better. And someday the slaves would learn enough to be free men. So perhaps they sincerely felt that they were merely clearing native weeds and planting slave seeds! The more enthusiastic they were about the rights of man, the better they may have felt about the lack of rights of “savages” and slaves. The views of most groups toward convenient victims of their tribe are rarely skeptical of tribal rationales.

    • franck-y
      July 5, 2018 at 10:48 pm

      Merci beaucoup pour ce commentaire, historique, enrichissant et paradoxal. Il faut aussi se rappeler que “démocrate” était une insulte pour les “pères” fondateurs.

  44. Kalen
    July 4, 2018 at 4:55 am

    Few historical facts:

    The counterrevolutionary US constitution of 1789 was nothing but a ploy for rich and powerful British aristocracy and oligarchy to wrestle their absolute control back and return to past regime of 1776 but this time sans King and with collective despotism instead, calling the whole revolutionary experiment they instigated themselves dead as too democratic threatening their profits from slavery.

    It was British aristocracy and oligarchy with interest in American colonies who concocted “American Revolution” in order to steal land given them as a privilege by English King and hence avoid paying taxes considered by British government at that time. And shocked and dismayed by unexpected rise of social conscientiousness of poor/landless colonists who supposed to exhibit animal like qualities and not maturity of citizen, they pulled the plug and killed the American experiment in 1789 via illegal constitutional convection once for all.

    It took them so long [13 years] since they had to think hard how to camouflage the “old” system of “collective” monarchy based on medieval fiefdoms [dropped names like colonies replaced by a term states that delegate some limited prerogatives to a states’ GSE, a corporation domiciled on a strip of land called D.C., the only area that this GSE called Federal Government really directly controls] under propaganda of supposedly Greek and Roman democratic tradition that bombastic neo- classical monstrosities of Federal buildings suppose to convey.

    Americans, It is time to remember Declaration of Independence, 1776 that states:
    ..But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.

    Corporate despotism reigns supreme, it is time to sharpen pitchforks as is duty of free citizenry as demanded by Declaration of Independence.

  45. OlyaPola
    July 4, 2018 at 4:18 am

    “America Celebrates Lateral Move From Monarchy To Corporate Rule”

    The move was linear within the linear paradigm of class societies using a similar mix of coercion including ideological tools for sustainabilty, obfuscated by the transition from “divine right of kings” modified by the “Glorious Revolution of 1688” to “We the people hold these truths to be self-evident”, the assay of the amalgam of coercive tools remaining within the linear.

    A lateral (qualitative) change is required to transcend “capitalism” and the misnamed “The United States of America” and why reform is self-defeating since it is also linear and hence facilitates the continued immersion in iterations of modulated status-quo ante and hence precludes lateral change.

    • Sam F
      July 4, 2018 at 7:24 am

      I interpret your “reform is self-defeating” to mean evolutionary or incremental reform, which as you note relies on existing powers, and therefore maintains oligarchy.

      Even revolutions seldom do much better, because they are opposed by economic or external powers. A revolution would have worked in the US, having no major external powers, if it reformed economic power, but is not feasible against our totalitarian state.

      Only the extreme conditions of poverty by external embargo, military defeats discrediting the warmongers, and rising gangsterism and corruption will bring enough anger among the middle class, probably 40-60 years hence. See Mexico, and we are not there yet. Meanwhile we pretend that fashion reforms lead somewhere.

      • OlyaPola
        July 5, 2018 at 2:21 am

        “Only the extreme conditions of poverty by external embargo, military defeats discrediting the warmongers, and rising gangsterism and corruption will bring enough anger among the middle class, probably 40-60 years hence.”

        One of the aspects of “exceptionalism” is to seek to assign significance to self that others do not assign to you.
        Such hubris affords strategic opportunities for others.

        Agency is a type of interaction and can be minimised through non-emulated interaction the process being accelerated through lateral modes of interaction perceived by opponents as linear (emulated) interaction – which in some measure describes the trajectory of transcending the Soviet Union by the Russian Federation with the complicity of “The United States of America” facilitated by hubris such as the end of history and full spectrum dominance.

        In such a scenario what the inhabitants of “The United States of America” do is of lesser import, a process accelerated by their self-absorption.

        If the

        • Sam F
          July 5, 2018 at 8:10 am

          You appear to be saying that a fifth column effects more serious reforms, moving toward a parallel branch of history while seeming to effect lesser reforms. (Your usage of “lateral” suggests move toward greater reform, while in the article it refers to movement to something no better.)

          • OlyaPola
            July 5, 2018 at 9:28 am

            “a fifth column effects more serious reforms”

            No, that is an integration within the opponents’ linear paradigm.

            If you need an example take a sample from a useful fool’s blog http://www.thesaker.is who frames in 5th, 6th and nth columns, not necessarily newspaper columns, and generally bad people, evil doers and assorted rascals – a passion play facilitating deflection, deflection and/or “children’s crusades”, although children generally have a lesser propensity to be rendered useful fools and why they require “socialisation” to get with the team.

            “Your usage of “lateral” suggests move toward greater reform”.

            That is also an integration within the opponents’ paradigm.

            Lateral is qualitative change facilitated by fission – a qualitative transcendence.

            Ideology is akin to a swimming pool; when you start to emerge you still carry drop-lets.

            Among the ideological notions with more resilient half-lives are “intuition”, “beliefs”, “framing” and “methods”.

            Some wish to remain in the present linear paradigm through “spheres of influence” which is presented as and constitutes “reform” thereby facilitating a mutation of the bacilli, not a transcendence.

            “while in the article it refers to movement to something no better.)”

            Spectators tend to ponder what is, some spectators bridging doubt by belief to attain pre-judgements.

            Spectators also often conflate comment with agency to maintain the comfort zone of not expanding their definition of agency.

            Practitioners test what is to formulate how to’s which throughout the process are subjected to rigorous evaluation/modulation.

            Spectating is a process described by Mr. Rove’s observation which I paraphrase.

            “We are an Empire now.
            We create our own reality.
            You react to our reality
            And whilst you do so
            We create another reality
            To which you react”

            Ergo immersion in iterations of the opponents linear paradigm.

            Mr. Rove also observed the reducing scope and half-life of this process namely

            “You can fool some of the people all of the time, and those are the one’s you should concentrate on”

            Blogs illustrate both observations of Mr. Rove.

            Consequently practitioners normally do not “agree” with spectators’ framing, including definition assigned to words, hopes and wishes but use the the spectators’ hopes and wishes to transcend them, afforded the opportunities to do so by the spectators frames of “plausible belief”, thereby adding the complicity of the spectators to the fissile material, since blogs are akin to petri-dishes wherein commentators add to “the culture” minimising unnecessary action by practitioners whilst “hiding” in open sight, although some commentators share hypotheses that others can test if so minded and others can iterate the process of bridging doubt by belief to attain pre-judgements and self-affirmation.

  46. Chumpsky
    July 4, 2018 at 2:09 am

    Another brilliant analysis by Caitlin. “America is a corporatist oligarchy dressed in drag doing a bad impression of a bipartisan democracy.”

    It would be useful to show how the “elite class” has manipulated our monetary system to advance their nefarious agenda. Robbery or transfer of wealth via inflation to control the political economy has been di rigeur since the creation of the Federal Reserve, which is not federal but a private chartered monopoly. All political distortions can be traced to this seditious injustice to American labor as well as the Hamiltonian monetary principles of our founders.

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