Top Scoops

Book Reviews | Gordon Campbell | Scoop News | Wellington Scoop | Community Scoop | Search

 

Andrés Manuel López Obrador for President Of USA!

Andrés Manuel López Obrador for President (of the US!!)
The US Left Could Learn From Mexico's Example


by Daniel Patrick Welch

Synopsis: Every election cycle, the US antiwar left reconvinces itself that its best chance of advancing its agenda is to dive once again into an alliance with the Democratic Party. Poor Charlie Brown! Is Lucy going to yank the ball away again? No suspense here....

"The only game in town" is just one of the myriad cover stories used by the vestiges of the US left to justify continued support for the reactionary (and otherwise moribund) Democratic Party. Nader threw the election to Bush, not fraud, not the Democrats' refusal to embrace a progressive agenda, not decades of cozying up to the corporate enemies of the people, not the complete alienation of so many potential voters that a "good" turnout breaks 50%; not the fascist and racist "cleansing" of released felons in the Old Confederacy that makes up to 25 % of black males ineligible for the franchise in 9 states of the unreconstructed south.

But what exactly is "the only game in town?" What irony that the system that spouts near-religious fervor for entrepreneurial capitalism is astonishingly stalinist when it comes to political choice. "You want white bread or buttertop white bread? Is only choice for customers. We are apologizing for inconvenience, yes?"

The defeatist attitude of those locked in the death-struggle of US politics would have us believe that no change is possible. Excuse me, let me rephrase, your honor: the only vehicle for change is the incremental, subtle pressure from within that one might use to steer a toboggan. Since this is the only road open to us, we are left looking at the backs of several 300-pound morons, all leaning hard to the right. Oh, okay, let's tilt left and see where the toboggan goes. What a load of crap.

There are few things more permanent than the PRI, the Institutional Revolutionary Party that ruled Mexico with an iron fist until a few years ago. Vicente Fox's PAN completely destroyed the PRI, much to everyone's surprise, and from its ashes rose the popular movement now headed by Andrés Manuel López Obrador, an authentic partisan of the Mexican left. When his election was stolen by the ruling plutocrats, he did not give a neat-and-tidy flag-drenched speech and run off to teach at Columbia; on the contrary, the fraudulent manipulation led to a true popular uprising the results of which still remain to be seen.

And this only a few short years after the PRI was the undisputed, eternal guardian of the Mexican "revolution." To be sure, AMALO has been helped by struggles great and small in Mexico, from the Zapatista uprising to the teachers' strike in Oaxaca--not to mention the general trend of Latin American elections to begin to throw off the yoke of US corporate diktat.

Still, the lesson is an important one for those who refuse to end their love affair with the Democratic Party as a viable conduit for the US left. It's not hard to see: it takes a true ostrich personality, combined with a sort of mass hysteria, to hide the obvious truth that the ideals of the left are completely incompatible with the goals of this party. Party Chairmain Dean telegraphs his own stay-the-course promise by saying that things won't change dramatically in Iraq if the Democrats manage to avoid self- destruction and regain legislative power.

Forget for the moment the obvious foreboding that the media will not conduct exit polling for House races in this midterm. The anachronism of exit polling, used successfully to detect fraud in election monitoring worldwide, no longer has a place in the self-described and self-delusional cradle of democracy. And such quaint notions must go the way of the Geneva Convention.

Next, John Kerry is forced to apologize (and does so!) for suggesting that it is poor kids that get stuck in Iraq. The party hierarchy is openly hostile to anyone with an antiwar platform, scared to death that an increasingly antiwar public might have some actual distinction on which to vote their conscience. God forbid! Three quarters of a million dead Iraqis are somehow anathema to candidates, even while the public is finally waking up to the ginormous ongoing DU-soaked war crime that is the invasion of Iraq. And while the corpse of this erstwhile force in US politics lies twitching on the gurney, it is the progressive wing that inexplicably breathes life into this hopeless frankenstein. Never before have so many been ignored by so few doing all they can to subvert the will of the many.

It's a difficult transition for many on the left, constantly trained and goaded into thinking that if they can just gain power and then nudge the party to the left from within, all will be well. What a shame, and a waste of talent and passion to boot. You can't make a silk purse out of a sow's ear, and you can't steer a toboggan one way if everyone else on board is leaning the other way.

*************

© 2006 Daniel Patrick Welch. Reprint permission granted with credit and link to http://danielpwelch.com. Writer, singer, linguist and activist Daniel Patrick Welch lives and writes in Salem, Massachusetts, with his wife, Julia Nambalirwa-Lugudde. Together they run The Greenhouse School http://www.greenhouseschool.org. Translations of articles are available in up to 20 languages. Links to the website are appreciated at danielpwelch.com.

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Top Scoops Headlines

 

Boris Johnson At Sea: Coronavirus Confusion In The UK

The tide has been turning against UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson. Oafishly, he has managed to convert that tide into a deluge of dissatisfaction assisted by the gravitational pull of singular incompetence. Much of this is due to such errors of ... More>>

Reese Erlich: Foreign Correspondent: Rightwing Populism Will Make You Sick—Really

The four countries with the most confirmed COVID-19 infections in the world are all led by rightwing populists: the US, India, Brazil, and Russia. Throw in the United Kingdom, which has the largest infection rate in Europe, and you have a common pattern. ... More>>

Dunne Speaks: Early Voting Is OK, If You Know Who To Vote For

Early voting is now open which is great for the 80% or so of the population whose vote does not change from one election to the next. They can go out and vote at their convenience without having to wait for election day. But for those who are yet even ... More>>

The Conversation: Biodiversity: Where The World Is Making Progress – And Where It’s Not

The future of biodiversity hangs in the balance. World leaders are gathering to review international targets and make new pledges for action to stem wildlife declines. Depending on whether you are a glass half-full or half-empty person, you’re likely ... More>>

Gordon Campbell: On Trump’s Current Chances Of Re-Election

By now it seems clear that National have no fresh ideas to offer for how New Zealand could avoid the Covid-19 economic crisis. As in the past, National has set an arbitrary 30% ratio of government debt to GDP that it aims to achieve “in a decade or so,” ... More>>

The Conversation: Rogue Poll Or Not, All The Signs Point To A Tectonic Shift In New Zealand Politics

Richard Shaw AAP(various)/NZ Greens (CC-BY-SA)/The Conversation Strong team. More jobs. Better economy. So say the National Party’s campaign hoardings. Only thing is, last Sunday’s Newshub-Reid Research poll – which had support for the Labour ... More>>

The Coronavirus Republic: Three Million Infections And Rising

The United States is famed for doing things, not to scale, but off it. Size is the be-all and end-all, and the coronavirus is now doing its bit to assure that the country remains unrivalled in the charts of infection . In time, other unfortunates may well ... More>>

Binoy Kampmark: Altars Of Hypocrisy: George Floyd, Protest And Black Face

Be wary what you protest about. The modern moral constabulary are out, and they are assisted by their Silicon Valley friends in the Social Media club. Should you dare take a stand on anything, especially in a dramatic way, you will be found out ... More>>

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
  • PublicAddress
  • Pundit
  • Kiwiblog