Democrats can only have it so good in the US. I am referring to the Democratic Party USA, of course, not human beings who yearn and struggle for freedom and social justice.
Malcolm X, back in 1964, in his speech titled The Ballet or the Bullet, put it straight. Maybe too straight. Whatever the case, his argument was prophetically simple, and equally universally ignored. We paraphrase the spirit of the speech here, not quoting word for word by any means:
Here we are, in the US, the land of genocide and slavery, and the two ruling parties are so closely representative of the mostly-white ruling capitalist class that every four years the politicians find it necessary to walk into neighborhoods they would not be caught dead in, under any other circumstances; not even when agonizingly hard-up for a blow job, a hand job, a joint or some other kind of blow. They come for your, the slave descendants’, votes; the very technical margin that puts one or the other ruling party in power.
The very power which draws from you, gives you nothing in return but dilapidated housing and neighborhoods, less than decent jobs, less security than that, and if you should refuse to walk this way or that, they put you in jail and have you as a government slave for twenty years for carrying a mere ten grams of weed; while Enron executives who steal thousands of peoples’ pensions and laugh all the way to the bank never see the sight of a bar in their living cell, unless it is a full bar at their hotel rooms, or their own custom-designed bars in their stolen houses filled with liquor bought with stolen assets.
Now, it is instructive to remember that the party we are talking about was at the peak of its ‘progressive’ inclinations back in the sixties, when it was the party in total control of the political power; two thirds of the Senate, three quarters of the House, plus the Presidency. Had they deemed it desirable, they could have outlawed private property, yet this most ‘progressive’ party could not bring itself to speedily set right a historical ugly viciousness perpetrated against some twenty million human beings among its kind.
Look at the tiny majority that the Republicans hold today in the legislative body, and look at the astonishing speed and ferocity with which they are implementing their Imperial agenda, and the significance of the gigantic majority the Democrats held back in 1964 becomes clearer.
Yet, as Malcolm iterated, that very Democratic Party USA, at the peak of its political power, did mighty little for the descendants of slaves, whose very votes were providing the leach-like Democrats the luxury of being in the driving seat. The Civil Rights Act did not get the final signature of the ruling class (in the legal-representative form of the Democratic Party) until 1967; a full seven years into Democrats’ total lock on the political power, and only a year before the general elections. How much more insulting can it get?
Lest one forgets, at about the same time period, that very ‘progressive’ Democratic Party USA was incinerating the Vietnamese population alone at the rate of roughly two hundred and fifty thousand precious lives a year.
It is a strange world, of course, where a Pope that provides sinister cover for paedophiles and sadistically outlaws proper preventative measures to be exercised against AIDS, thereby inadvertently (some may say willfully) killing hundreds of thousands of innocent souls, gets exonerated to high heaven, while an all-too painfully truthful spirit, like Garry Webb, who unearths a malicious web of intrigue that flooded the US working class urban areas with crack cocaine, gets systematically silenced, isolated, driven to the ground, threatened and abused to the point of literal suicide.
The strangeness however pales when we consider the willful ignorance and indeed the pride in ignorance exercised by the well-paid, very well-fed, well-educated, well-housed, and not-too-worried about any consequences of anything thought, said, or done. We are referring, politely mind you, to the elite participants in the game of deluding selves and others; the aristocracy of the voters for Democratic Party USA.
But, what is truly wrong with the non-aristocratic majority of the voters for the Democratic Party USA is that they are only-and-truly-only fooling themselves, and nobody else.
There is only one conclusion to be drawn. Democratic Party USA is a major part of the problem. But, that is only the beginning statement of any programmatic effort to set things right. Yet, that is where we must start. The corruption of ideas and the inability to think creatively runs so deep in the USA that as luminary a figure as a Noam Chomsky, or a Howard Zinn, when it came down to it, folded and advocated that voters should side with the establishment and throw away their rights by voting for a war-promoting Democrat presidential candidate in 2004.
So, it is high time for wake up calls!
The Iranian Revolution of 1978-79, in irony of all ironies, provides an excellent, miniaturized microcosm of lessons needed to confront political life.
Here is what happened in Iran. A population whose collective imagination was far greater than the stupidities allowed by the far-too-restrictive reality that Mohammad Reza Imbecile Pahlavi, the so-called King of Kings, could provide, finally had it up to their ears and then some, so they took to the streets, saying, “Enough is enough! Fuck you and the horse you got ridden-in on by the fucking Yanks!”
Problem was, the situation was rendered precarious from the very get-go because the majority of the population lacked the privileges of the knowledge that comes from forming parties and groupings, developing them, and participating in the real political life openly and legally and without harassment, which very knowledge forms a minimum base for anything calling itself democracy.
As our beloved and most able contemporary poet, Shamloo, observed: ‘A spontaneous revolution is like firing a gun in a stable.’ Implying of course that each goes the way of his or her own; meaning, ultimately, that those best organized in this chaotic hell, get to win the day; and many a days to follow.
And so it was in Iran. In a country where all political opposition was oppressed, pursued viciously, jailed and eliminated and hence driven underground by the Pahlavi absolute monarchy of Imbecile Shah, the only over-ground institution that had had a thousand-plus-year-old existence in society, i.e. the mosque, became the de facto organization for channeling political dissent; a mosque, by its physical-social form provides for a gathering place and most importantly, ontologically speaking, a leading person (the preaching clergy) formulating in a one-way, top down fashion, a quasi-explanation with which the masses should cogitate their oppression, giving them a ready-made language with which to confront their oppressors. Money in the political bank, and laughing all the way!
When the gun was finally fired in the stable, leading to the stampede, the ensuing scenario unfolded itself by the mere force of political reality, and the mullahs won.
But … and this is one of those huge but’s …
In the process of kicking out one asshole, we did learn something that can never be taken away.
There was a one year-to-two period that all freedoms that one could wish for in any social formation were enjoyed by us; as if by the magic of a gigantic mass effort all history, all brutality, all arbitrariness were suspended, during which we organized mass education movements, started practicing our social imagination, newer needs were slowly being recognized, debated and contested; whereby previously underground organizations held free classes for anybody who wished to sit and learn; whereby national minorities taking the arising democracy seriously, started formulating their just (and historically denied) demands for cultural and economic needs and autonomies that did not run counter to any national unity; whereby thousands of newsletters started sprouting, previously banned books were published, magazines got the light of the day, discussion groups sprung up in neighborhoods, schools and universities, political groupings were formed locally as well as nationally; whereby free associations ranging from neighborhood-watch committees to mountaineering associations, debate groups, cooperatives to help the poor, free public lectures, rallies, spontaneous mass street debates, workers’ cooperatives, workers-students cooperation committees, and myriad other forms of collective being were experienced, and a collective enlightenment was indeed being had.
We saw, in one suspended moment in our history, what we could achieve and how fast we could flourish, and how to do so peacefully, with minimal need for any central government. We saw and experienced this form of social bliss.
Alas … social bliss is, for the time being, a momentary luxury, if gotten at all.
But, we did experience and witness it as a society. And that is not something that can be taken away easily. Do you remember the first time you drove a car? The first time you skipped school to go watch a movie with your equally truant friend(s)? The first time you kissed a boyfriend? The first time you got laid? The first time you realized saying “NO!” felt good? Social freedom feels a million times better, and a million times more creative and more invigorating! Forget passing your driver’s license test!! Think bypassing the laws of physics!
Alas … it was only a moment! So, shed a momentary tear.
But when the machine did step in, it followed a truly patented route.
First, identify the most vulnerable group and start your attack there; and do not stop until all opposition, all free forms of life are well-yanked out.
They stared with national minorities in Iran. In the US, they did the same.
Then they attacked women’s rights in Iran. In the US, they are doing the same.
Then they legalized their takeover. As they did in the US, with the PATRIOT Act.
In Iran, they started supervising professionals ideologically; as in, they started asking (and created the expectation that such questions are the supreme ones to consider): Are the chemists and the doctors and the teachers teaching, curing and making up their chemicals according to the correct ideological prescription? In the US, in going after university professors, lawyers and journalists, they are doing the same.
With that, they could encroach on all kinds of legal fronts that previously they dared not have encroached.
The only difference is in the modalities, the time span, and the circumstances. But the intent, and the intended results are absolutely the same: the utter subjugation of the majority of the population by the state on behalf of the ruling class, be it a merchant class, a banking class, an industrial class, one composed in equal parts of each, or one composed of none.
The farce is the same in its most essential elements.
In Iran we have ‘hardliners/conservatives’ vs. ‘reformers’, while in the US we have Republicans vs. the Democrats. The same clowns in different clothing.
There are no longer any significant amounts of delusion left about Khatami in Iran. He is a believer in the system. He believes in theocracy, just as much as any Democrat in the US believes in the imperial mission of the USA. There are no ambiguities about that. So, as a secular democrat, never mind a socialist, I know I will be pursued and persecuted by Khatami and his fellow travelers, just as much as by his right flank bad-cop comrades, who are only slightly more frightening than him; and all of whom pale in organized barbarity when compared to just about any section of the US’s political superstructure, whether its functionaries vote Republican or Democrat.
So, here we are indeed, in the US, the ‘bastion of democracy’, as they like to propagandize; and yet the US citizens are being stripped of about all the rights they had fought for and won over long, bloody historical battles. And all of it happening almost by stealth, because amply aided along by the Democrats; under the cover provided by the smoke-screen of the ‘War on Terror’. At least in Iran, we died in thousands, literally, went to jails in tens of thousands, and were scattered around the world in millions trying to protect the freedoms gained after such a long history of oppression and humiliation, and in the aftermath of the axe that came down on our asses again after daring to be free. In the US, on the other hand, since the gains were gained slowly and over such a long time, they had to be taken away in stealth and with recourse to lies, deceits, and utter obfuscations, so the lives lost are lost in deceitful wars created for the benefit of extending barbarity.
Which brings us back to the Democrats; those consummate obfuscators and fence riders. In short, those leach-like weasels! Show respect? Fuck no! Liberals must be offended, for they are the most offensive, hypocritical, deceitful and disrespectful species of political treachery in these (post, if you insist) modern times. Anybody who advocates in any way, form or shape any alliance with, working with, respect for, or cooperation with the Democratic Party USA is an avowed enemy, or deluded blind snitch betrayer of the working people and the poor of the USA, and all the working and poor peoples of the world. Period!
If any truly progressive-leaning person wants to do anything positive, he or she should start by creating an alternative party of, for and in the interest of the working peoples and the poor. And that party must have a very clear plank in its platform for fighting against all ruling parties, including an unambiguous resolution to fight the Democratic Party USA. Anybody who continues to reside in the constituency of the Democratic Party USA must be told point blank that their party stands against the farming and working classes in the US, as well as against the small mom and pop shop, against racial minorities in the US, as well as against any true emancipation of women, as well as against national minorities of the US, and most definitely against the poor workers of the Third World.
Any African-American who supports the Democratic USA is a house slave. Any Mexican-American, Latin-American, Arab-American, Iranian-American, Asian-American, Italian-American, Irish-American, American Indian who supports the Democratic Party USA is a house slave. A nigger. And as such will be used and abused by the machinery as seen fit, and spat out when deemed beneficial; for such is the fate of all niggers of the world, no matter whence they commence.
And to avoid needless controversy we define a ‘nigger’ as that which Franz Fanon called a ‘colonized subject’: a subject, a person, an actor, a willful conscious human being who acts in the interest of his or her oppressor.
So, stop being a house nigger and grow some balls if you really want to do something to change the situation, as opposed to just reporting on it and taking endless notes on this or that new tiny differentiation in the latest modality of how the machine is fucking us all.
Start with creating a new political reality on the real political ground. As in, get busy creating a nation-wide party of the true left, with organic links to the workers’ needs and issues, linked with communities that are subjugated to the status of ‘inner’ this and ‘under’ that. There are thousands of communities who are deprived by all means and measures by the really existing corporate-dictated reality; so go and talk to those communities. If you live in one of those communities, start organizing a political party that will ram your demands down the throats of the Senators and the Representatives who steal your vote and sell it to corporations, who ruin your water, ruin your air, ruin your soil, your food, who give you endless cancers that halve your life span, who then steal whatever pension you managed to put aside for your golden days, and do it at half the price it used to cost them to rob the poor, since they nowadays outsource the looting to off-shore companies based in Kuala Lumpur.
Whatever you do politically, though, don’t trust the Democrats; build your own party, and do all you can to screw them up! If anybody tells you Democrats have this good point or that, tell them they’re fools worse than Uncle Tom strapped with Sally Hemmings. Tell them they don’t know their asshole from a hole in a rich man’s soul. Tell them to go suck an egg. Or, better yet, tell them to go fuck themselves since they love their illusions so much and so endlessly.