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« May 2013 »
An Enclosure Called Politics. Surrealism and Electoral Politics
The quadrennial abuse visited upon us by the boosters of the State, and their supplicants, grows worse. This electoral circus (to be clear, I am not limiting my scorn to that baroque institution, the Electoral College, ridiculed by all, even those, worldwide, who genuflect to what they perceive to be more sophisticated governing structures), this circus, I repeat, solidified after years of debate in the United States at the end of the 18th Century, when the assumption that control of unruly social forces belonged to wealthy white men (who, alone, had the franchise), was imposed, though not necessarily obeyed (rebellions repeatedly threatened the new rulers of the former colonies), and amounts to nothing more than a counter-revolutionary culmination of a bloody uprising – erroneously termed The American Revolution – that, itself, foreclosed Thomas Paine’s revolutionary vision.
"Ron Paul, Libertarianism, and the Anarchist Connection"
Let's face it, the dogged Republican quest to find the one "true
conservative" is beginning to look more and more like the search for the
Holy Grail. It's an article of faith for most Republican stalwarts that
there should be some such animal; but, it seems, the voters can't make
up their mind just which contender fits that bill of particulars. Mitt's
devotion to the ideal scores high in one primary; Santorum's in another;
then enter Newt, managing to capture some piece of primary fame and
glory. The series of Republican debates has become, in essence, the most
entertaining variety show since Ed Sullivan.
Standing quirkily apart, is Ron Paul: one time Libertarian Party
Presidential candidate (1988), gone mainstream Republican. I've always
thought of him as something of a cross between the kindly TV icon, Dr.
Marcus Welby, and the infinitely patient Fred Rogers, star of Mr.
Roger's Neighborhood. Except in Ron Paul's neighborhood, bankers don't
get bailed out and if you've got a prescription to be filled, don't
count on Medicaid to pay.
The Party of Wall Street Meets Its Nemesis
The Party of Wall Street has ruled unchallenged in the United States for far too long. It has totally (as opposed to partially) dominated the policies of Presidents over at least four decades (if not longer), no matter whether individual Presidents have been its willing agents or not. It has legally corrupted Congress via the craven dependency of politicians in both parties upon its raw money power and access to the mainstream media that it controls. Thanks to the appointments made and approved by Presidents and Congress, the Party of Wall Street dominates much of the state apparatus as well as the judiciary, in particular the Supreme Court, whose partisan judgments increasingly favor venal money interests, in spheres as diverse as electoral, labor, environmental and contract law.
Objectives of The Debtor's Party
In a private conversation on that great modern Stoa, Facebook, my friend Tiziana Terranova, endorsed the Objectives of the Debtors' Party, saying "there's nothing about these objectives I could not share," but went on to ask a rather pointed question:
"It is the notion of starting a political party that leaves me baffled, coming as you know from an autonomist political background that has been arguing for constituent power, that is the invention of new institutions altogether. Why try to reinvent an old formula like a political party?"
Why a Political Party?
The U.S. midterm elections register a level of anger, fear and disillusionment in the country like nothing I can recall in my lifetime. Since the Democrats are in power, they bear the brunt of the revulsion over our current socioeconomic and political situation.
More than half the "mainstream Americans" in a Rasmussen poll last month said they view the Tea Party movement favorably-a reflection of the spirit of disenchantment.
The grievances are legitimate. For more than 30 years, real incomes for the majority of the population have stagnated or declined while work hours and insecurity have increased, along with debt. Wealth has accumulated, but in very few pockets, leading to unprecedented inequality.
Reverend Billy Talen
Three weeks to go to the election. Last night I interrupted Mike Bloomberg’s opening statement in the debate. We’re trying to poke through the $65 million TV screen that weighs down on us in Gotham City. My prayer for bravery was posted with you earlier yesterday, “…there is something powerful in a quiet voice when the words are whole.”
I warmed up my voice shouting in the street before they opened the El Museo del Barrio to those of us who had political connections or groundling tickets like me. The hour before the debate, on the edge of Central Park in the twilight, Savitri and I hosted a Coney Island sideshow – a shoe-tossing with an effigy of Mike Bloomberg. We had debated all week about throwing a shoe at him during the debate, or maybe even a light-weight not-injurious Chinese flat-heel, but lawyer friends explained assault charges and the likelihood of being shot before I could get my missile out of my hand.