Rebuilding the House George Smashed:
America can avoid sliding into a full-blown fascist state complete with concentration camps and right wing death squads if we begin to act now. If we fail to act wisely we will face that dreaded moment when the gestapo pounds on our door in the middle of the night.
Rebuilding the House George Smashed:
Can America Avoid Fascism?
From The Streets of Little Beirut
Feb. 9, 2009
With a collective sigh of relieve Americans watched as the Bush administration ended and a new president take over. Like the first ray of sunshine breaking through the storm clouds the inauguration brought a renewed hope for a better and more prosperous America. Bush was leaving office with the lowest popularity of any president and perhaps as the most despised man on the planet.
The Bush administration had pushed the country to the brink of fascism and nearly bankrupted the country. Several writers had already noted with worry the fascist character the Bush administration was taking on. Bush had smashed what once was the citadel of freedom into another repressive hell-hole, where our constitutional rights rested on the whim of a Texas blow monkey. The Bush administration trampled on our rights, waged an aggressive war for oil, and caused untold damage to our government and our stature in the world. Perhaps, the most serious damage Bush did was to destroy our faith in the election process. However, all the damage Bush did; can be repaired with time and a great deal of care and effort. America can avoid sliding into a full-blown fascist state complete with concentration camps and right wing death squads if we begin to act now. If we fail to act wisely we will face that dreaded moment when the gestapo pounds on our door in the middle of the night.
We must understand that the danger of sliding into a fascist state did not pass with the passing of the Bush administration, the danger still lurks in the shadows. In a free society based on capitalism fascism is insidious and seeps into every facet of our lives until suddenly in burst forth in the extremely virulent form. For this reason we must have a good understanding of what fascism is so we can safely take steps to avoid it. Like any political ideology, fascism lacks a precise definition and is best defined by its common traits. Perhaps, the best definition of fascism was put forth by Heywood Broun, a noted American columnist.
"Fascism is a dictatorship from the extreme right, or to put it a little more closely into our local idiom, a government which is run by a small group of large industrialists and financial lords ... I think it is not unfair to say that any businessman in America, or public leader, who goes out to break unions is laying the foundations for fascism."
Of all the common traits normally associated with fascism the merger of corporations with the government is always present, as is a large degree of corruption in the government. Usually accompanying the appearance of fascism is belligerent nationalism. In short fascism is a modern day feudal state with the lords and barons replaced by CEOs of multinational corporations and investment bankers. It can readily be distinguished from socialism and communism from the fact both of those are bottom up revolutions where fascism is a top down revolution.
Moreover, fascism only emerges in countries with market based economies during periods of economic stress. Fascism is the last desperate attempt of the elite corporate owners and bankers to maintain their control over the country. With this understanding of fascism we can begin to access how severe the threat is.
While Obama has taken some steps reliving the threat somewhat, much more needs to be done before the threat has been safely removed. Unfortunately the Bush administration was diligent in installing all the machinery needed for a fascist police state. The Bush administration included in the 2006 budget awarded Halliburton's subsidiary KBR $385 million for the repair and upgrading of concentration camps. Knowledgeable sources estimate the government has approximately 800 secret concentration camps scattered across the country in both remote area and in urban areas. The Bush administration allowed the military to establish the northern command center along with the dispatching 20,000 troops in civilian areas. The Bush administration carefully issued executive orders and signing statements that would allow the president to suspend our constitutional rights and declare martial law. Moreover, the Bush administration even contended that opposing views to the president constituted aid to terrorists and therefore the individual could be arrested and held in secret without bail or legal aid.
The Bush administration also set up an elaborate network to spy on Americans, even enlisting the phone companies to supply the administration with our calling records. This is particularly a grave situation as it allows the government to deduce our social, work, and family networks. If anyone fails to understand the danger in such and action they should read Edwin Blacks' IBM and the Holocaust to see how genealogy records aid the Nazis.
The trend towards martial law is still continuing the intelligence agencies are recruiting pastors to persuade their church members to give up their guns and follow the government orders in case of martial law. In January the FBI announced quietly that it was hiring an additional 3,000 agents. At the end of January Congress announced it was authorizing FEMA to establish at least six national emergency centers on military bases.
While the trend towards militarization continues unabated the gravest threat we face is the economic downward spiral we're in. Since fascism depends upon economic stress to gain control, the first step in avoiding fascism is to bring the economy back into control.
Only a Bush apologist would call this downward spiral a recession any longer. It is a depression and if Obama is unable to rein it in, it will make the Great Depression look like boom times. The government already has made commitments totaling a staggering $8.5 trillion dollars towards propping this economy up by the end of November 2008 $3.5 trillions dollars had already been tapped to no avail as the economy continued to spiral downward out off control. All economic indicators are still in a downward trend and are now beginning to accelerate and are in danger of becoming self-sustaining. Global trade has begun to contract and evidence of protectionism is popping up around the globe as the world economy continues to deteriorate. Additionally riots and strikes are spreading across Europe as unemployment increases.
The fascist agenda of the Republican party and the former Bush administration can even be seen in the economic bailout proposed by Bush and the united opposition to Obama's economic plans. The $700 billion bailout of ailing bankers proposed by Bush in the early fall faced almost universal opposition. Yet congress promptly passed the measure with little delay and no oversight despite the public's opposition. The bill offer little if any aid for the home buyers struggling with their mortgages instead the bill was devoted to helping destitute bankers, an exact match for Heywood Broun's definition of fascism given earlier. Following on the heels of the banker's bailout, congress denied bailing out Detroit automakers. However, the Bush administration announced a vindictive bailout for the automakers that was nothing more than union busting. Since, Michigan had voted for Obama, the UAW workers had to be punished and were forced to accept cuts in pay and benefits totaling nearly thirty percent of their union contract. Once again we see the nature of fascism in the settlement as given in the definition by Broun.
Both bailouts and the $3.5 trillion dollars the government has spent by the end of November on propping up the economy by bailing out Wall Street bankers have been to no avail as the economy continues its downward spiral. While I'm no economist I can offer a solution at the same cost of $3.5 trillion. Instead of giving the money to destitute bankers divide the money evenly among the taxpayers. There are roughly 150 million taxpayers that would give each taxpayer roughly $23,000 and cost a total of $3.5 trillion. That would have been more than enough money to end the subprime crisis as well as help revive Detroit automakers, as strapped consumers would begin to spend some of their windfall. As for the destitute Wall Street bankers, I have this sage advice "JUMP YOU DAMN BASTARDS."
At the beginning of Obama's term we now know that the assurances of the Bush administration that Wall Street would be accountable for any money they received was a crock of shit. Citigroup intends on buying a $50 million luxury jet, AIG sponsored "working vacations" for their overpaid executives in luxury resorts where rooms cost a thousand a day and finally the hard up Wall Street firms announce bonuses totaling $18 billion. In short, many taxpayers are struggling to make ends meet on $50 thousand or less and the Bush administration expects them to pick up the tab for these destitute Wall Street banker so they can receive bonuses that gives them more money than the taxpayers will make in 10 years. This has prompted Missouri Senator Claire McCaskill to introduce a bill in the senate to cap the salaries of CEOs of Wall Street firms that received money in the government handout to $400,000 dollars this year. Obama has further restricted their pay but allowed them to receive bonuses in company stock. While the Obama's and the good Senator's proposal are a step in the right direction their proposals don't go far enough and their measures lack teeth. The measures should be limited to say $250 thousand in all forms of income and any additional income treated as a felony crime of looting the public treasury and punishable by 30 years in prison and the a fined under the guidelines of RICO. Further the restrictions would remain in place until the firm repays the government in full including interest.
The fascist agenda of the Republican party is readily apparent in their opposition to Obama's economic plan. Using the excuse that the plan is to expensive and would increased the deficit they are removing any programs designed to help the individual while inserting more tax cuts for the rich. Remember these are the same people that first claimed the deficit was a problem under Carter, then they claimed the deficit didn't matter under Reagan, once Clinton took office they claimed the deficit was a problem again and under Bush they claimed the deficit didn't matter again. Frankly if these Republicans had changed their shorts as often as they changed their opinion about the deficit they wouldn't smell as bad as they do and they might even be a bit believable but seriously they don't have a damn clue. The one thing is certain is they will work to prevent any revival of the economy. They know that if a popular young Democratic president was able to revive the economy their political careers would be over for the rest off their lives and it would be another 30 years before the Republicans could gain control of congress. For this reason alone the future looks glum because the Republicans will monkey wrench any solution. If the compromise package passed by the senate doesn't contain direct and immediate aid for the workers and the poor, this economy is going to tank before summer. Both Illinois and California are already broke. Soon both states will no longer be able to pay state employees. When both states run out of funds for unemployment the real crisis will begin.
If Obama can successfully revive the economy we may indeed avoid slipping into a fascist state. However, there are four additional measures that we must take in order to avoid fascism in the long term.
I. Since fascism by its definition is government rule by the elite we must take steps to eliminate the multimillionaires with multiple mansions while other Americans are forced to sleep under bridges in refrigerator boxes. The concentration of wealth into the hands of a few families is the single greatest factor destroying the country. The wealth needs to be dispersed so everyone may prosper. This can be accomplished by raising the minimum wage to a realistic level that would support a family of four above the poverty line. Restoring the progressive nature of the income tax by eliminating income tax for minimum wage earners, and establishing a top tax rate of 99.5% for anyone earning more than five times the minimum wage and disallowing any exemptions beyond a personal deductions for $50,000. Additionally a wealth tax needs to be established that taxes any assets above $5 million. The tax must be steep enough that it prevents the individual from acquiring further wealth. Lastly we must reverse one of the most senseless Supreme Court decisions ever, that equates money with free speech. Such a ridiculous decision allow the rich to buy the best damn politician available and to hell with the rest of us.
II. Besides taxation to remove the elite, their vehicle for obtaining unrestrained wealth must be removed by restricting corporations. A constitutional amendment must be passed that limits the bill of rights to people and further restricts corporations. The amendment must limit people to serving on only one corporate board, cap the size that corporations may obtain, grant all shareholders a single ballot in all corporate proceedings regardless of the number of shares they own. Finally, the amendment must hold the senior management, including the board of directors and the largest shareholders liable in cases of damages. For a good example see the author's sample amendment in The Nazi Hydra In America.
Additionally a job creation program is desperately needed. To be successful NAFTA must be declared null and void along with the rest of the one-world agreements masquerading as free trade agreements. Secondly we must end ladling out corporate welfare to create a few jobs. In the past both parties would announce a job creation program that grant a corporation millions to create a few burger flipping type jobs while the corporation sent their family wage jobs overseas such as the case of General Motors. The ink was hardly dry on the bailout for General Motors when they announced they were opening a plant in China and to hell with American workers. Well I can propose a job creation program that will put America back to work tomorrow without spending a dime on corporate welfare. We simply tax the senior management including the board of directors and the major shareholders a tax of $5000 per month for each foreign worker they now employ either directly or indirectly.
III. Next the military needs to be scaled back. The troops in Afghanistan and Iraq need to be brought home immediately. The northern command must be eliminated and any military adventurism into civilian affairs dealt with swiftly and severely, Furthermore the military budget needs to be scaled back sharply.
IV. Finally America must get past its aversion to holding politicians responsible for their actions. The last thing we need is another blue ribbon whitewashing committee like the Warren Commission. We need to start appointing hanging judges and open war crimes, crimes against humanity, crimes against the people and crimes against the constitution against every senior member of the former Bush regime. George Bush may believe that the constitution is just a damn piece of paper but it's the only safeguard we have between us and rule by barbarians. However, the constitution is only as good as those that choose to defend it and the principles it sets forth. If we allow elected officials to run amok and trash the constitution and deprive us of our constitutional rights then we deserve fascist rule. Trials for war crimes are absolutely necessary if we are to avoid fascism in the future. Failure to hold trials and hang the guilty allows the same crowd of fascists that stood behind the Bush administration to remain in power.
These measures may seem to be an overreaction or overly severe to some. However, all of the measures with the exception of the wealth tax are just reenacting of laws of the past that stood the nation in good stead until they were modified or eliminated by the very fascist that now seek to derail the Obama presidency. Make no mistake the organized resistance is set to trash anything Obama proposes including his stimulus plan and his nominations. That resistance doesn't give a shit about the country and only seeks power by any means and that includes assassination Already the Nazi gas-bag, Rush Limbaugh has stated he hopes Obama fails. If Obama fails to revive the economy and the nut cases like Limbaugh have their way the unemployment rate will exceed 30% within six months. The resulting depression will be so severe that the Great Depression of the 30's will look like boom times.
However, this time don't expect any soup lines instead the unemployed will be rounded up like cattle and sent to concentration camps and forced into what amounts to be slave labor. You will have no rights. You have a choice to either live free or die a coward's death in some damn concentration camp. Its your choice.
For those that don't understand how we arrived at the brink of global fascism or don't understand what fascism is and how to fight it can obtain a copy of the author's book The Nazi Hydra in America at Amazon or their favorite bookstore.
link to www.amazon.com
A piercing study of the tenacious roots of American fascism in our plutocracy, from robber baron days to the Reichstag fire to "Homeland Security." The Nazi Hydra In America delves into America's darkest taboo---our elite's perennial backing of fascism. Our cherished tradition---America the champion of liberty defending the globe against the totalitarian hordes---is overturned. In relentless detail, The Nazi Hydra In America documents how the US financiers created Hitler and his war machine, launched a putsch against FDR, and recouped Nazi assets to lay the foundation for today's NSA and CIA.
This is a valuable history of the relationship between big business in the United States and European fascism, before, during, and after the second World War. The story is shocking and sobering and deserves to be widely read. -- Howard Zinn "Author of "People's History of the United States""
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