The day real change comes to America: afterthoughts

If you’ve been writing a column for a number of years, as I have, your predictability as to how your article will be received gains accuracy with time… except that occasionally you get a surprise party when it’s not even your birthday. Last week’s column fell in that category, although the article had not received especially wide coverage.

My point that neither Tweedledee nor Tweedledum, coming from the two branches of the empire, can bring “real change” to our nation – social, political or economic – was only mildly challenged; and there was overwhelming agreement that both Democratic and Republican politicians come from the same litter and are nursed by the same bitch (American corporate interests). What made the response interesting was the variety of information and advice received in over 800 emails… from tirades as to what real change is, or should be, to the full spectrum of personal cynicism as to why this country is masochistically going to hell in a handbasket; or as this lady from Norman, Oklahoma, put it: “Our goddamn government is taking us to economic heaven in a wheelbarrow.”

I won’t expand on the many interesting academic philippics on change, presented from the perspectives of biological evolution, organizational change, or even environmental change; on the latter, this professor from a Canadian university tried to convince me (not that I needed convincing) that a country such as the United States where we are so addicted to oil (two to three times as the Europeans) even moderate change has little or no chance. There is just no way, according to him that we could even begin to address global warming – particularly since we lack the institutional and political mechanisms, which the Europeans have, to take away the unduly influence of the rich. As I was reading that email, the heads of state of the European Union were formulating a plan of action to keep on reducing carbon emissions in that continent. Can anyone fathom a similar path taken in the US under the leadership of our present polluter-in-chief?

But perhaps the more down-to-earth statements, at times disconcertingly brilliant in tackling today’s realities, were given in current events which neither our mainstream media nor our politicians seem to comprehend. Even the most erudite punditry seems to miss it altogether… such as these pertinent news items during the past two weeks:

How can Condoleeza Rice, our inept – in consonance with our buffoonish government – representative in foreign affairs, tell Congress that “it” has no say in plans for Iraq? Yet Congress took it on the chin and looked the other way. “Now, that’s real change,” according to L.W. from Burlington, Vermont; but to him, that represents unconstitutional regressive change, and if Congress is willing to forego its obligations, it’s up to the citizens to recall each and every member of the Senate for Constitutional treason, while blacklisting all House members for the following election. How can one disagree?!

Or, as A. H., from Detroit, Michigan, wrote: “Can we be as idiotic as to isolate foreign policy from domestic economic matters? I have yet to read or hear someone being on target on the issue of granting the multi-billion dollar contract to European Air Bus, and not Boeing. It really has nothing to do with a lower price tag as led to believe by the Pentagon, or nit-wit hawkish McCain; it really has to do with a simple quid pro quo. We want European NATO forces in Afghanistan for five years, right? What better way than to give the Europeans some business; screw the American worker!”

And it does appear as if we have forced Europe to grudgingly side with us militarily, or overlook our actions – or inactions – on issues of economic or environmental criminality. I know that some will frown when we add America’s financial deluge of worthless paper on European and Asian markets, and America’s non-cooperative stand in environmental matters, as issues of criminality. But they are… as much as our bombings and killings in the Middle East, or the economic sanctions (and embargoes) we have exacted on nations antagonistic to US policies that would not kneel to the empire’s demands. Yes, there is such thing as environmental and economic criminality… and we have often perpetrated both, although we are not being held accountable. It is in these areas as well where change in America needs to take place, real change.

It was heartwarming to read, if the column’s response was any kind of an indicator, how many people there are who advocate peace and equanimity beyond local or national borders, making everyone’s concern that of the global community: the people and not just the economic feudal lords who now make up the rules.

Still, true or real, change will not come to America until its citizenry decides that the present level of evolutionary change will never bring us a healthy democracy, or make us a respected nation… one in peace with the international community. And that is not about to happen with either Hillary Clinton (for sure) or Barack Obama (likely) as president; a condition that would be highly aggravated with John McCain at the helm.