Tuesday, January 10, 2023

Who's Really In Charge?

Capitalism functions very efficiently without democracy. --Chris Hedges

You'll never stop depraved agendas as long as propagandists can manipulate a critical mass of people into consenting to those agendas. Propaganda is enemy #1. --Caitlin Johnstone

Who’s Really In Charge?

by C.A. Matthews

Americans worry about a lot of things that they have no control over. They also worry a lot about other people of whom they have no control over.

One recent example of this excessive worrying for naught can be seen in the numerous attempts to elect a Speaker of the House of Representatives. In the end, will it really matter to you personally who’s put into that position? Be honest with yourself. If the Speaker is either a Republican or a Democrat, then it won’t make much of a difference to you and yours, assuming you’re a member of the bottom 90% of Americans, a.k.a. the “working class.” Your life will continue along similar lines tomorrow as it did today no matter who is made Speaker.

Don’t believe me? Read our end of the year review The Year Nothing Fundamentally Changed—Again. The federal minimum wage hasn’t changed. COVID-19 is still spreading, and we still don’t have universal health care in the US. The migrant kids are still in cages. The hideous Title 42 and “Remain in Mexico” anti-asylum policies are still being enforced. Cops are still shooting people of color at an alarming rate and not reporting all of these shootings. There were only 12 days in 2022 where a police officer did not shoot someone in the US. Twelve whole days working class Americans didn’t receive a phone call telling them about the police killing one of our loved ones.

Looking at how things remained the same or worsened for the working class or bottom 90% of Americans, one could come to the conclusion that no real change occurs whenever a member of either faction of the corporate uniparty (a.k.a. “the duopoly”) sits in that top seat in the House of Representatives or the White House. Both “major parties” accept (some say they demand) corporate cash through various lobbying organizations and PACs or political action committees. PACs are a fantastically clever way to hide “dark money” or money that no one knows where it comes from. It could come from a foreigner, gangster, or banker—which could all be the same person

“Who cares where it comes from?” say American politicians. “Our bank accounts certainly don't!”

It has become apparent in recent times that politicians are essentially being hired to do the bidding of those who have given them the biggest checks. And they don’t seem to have any moral qualms about accepting money with strings attached, since they are often rewarded with big book deals and swanky board memberships with perks upon retiring from office.

So, who’s really in charge? It’s easy. Follow the money.

“It can’t be that simple!” some of you are screaming at this point. “Just because politicians accept huge sums of cash from PACs, corporations, and lobbying groups for corporations, it doesn’t mean they’re simply puppets for those who paid them that money.”

Are you certain about that? The infamous “Princeton Study” demonstrates that American politicians only listen to and do the bidding of those who give them the most money. That excludes those of us at the bottom. Unless you’ve been giving a politician regular sums—very large sums—of cash, the statistics prove what you as an ordinary American worker have to say to that politician is of no consequence whatsoever. They will do as their real bosses, the corporations, tell them to do anyway.

Face it—money is speech. Corporations are people. The US Supreme Court deemed it so in the oddly named Citizens United case. Since Citizens United became law in 2010, money has been firmly equated to speech in political realms. Until the law is repealed, corporations will continue to be the richest and most influential of all people in the United States of America.

Americans have really got to stop worrying about who won this or that election like it’s somehow going to be the end of the world if their preferred candidate doesn’t win. If the race is “won” by either a Republican or Democrat, we poor folks of the working class have essentially lost out to the fat cats of the corporations. We have no control to begin with since we don’t have the billions of dollars needed to buy that candidate’s allegiance, and now that the corporate-owned candidate is in office, the Princeton Study tells us that they'll completely stop listening to us.

Game over. The billionaire CEOs won the contest right out of the starting gate.

If you’re starting to feel anxious because you realize now that we little guys can never have the control over our destinies that we desire under this corrupt political-economic system, take a deep breath. Let’s repeat the Serenity Prayer together:

God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change,
The courage to change the things I can,
And the wisdom to know the difference.

It’s time now to get wise and learn about the things we can change.

The real power on this planet is wielded not by so-called “elected officials,” but by those who run the massive corporations, most of them multinationals. (Yes, other countries are in the grips of Big Oil, Big Pharma, Big Agriculture, Big Chemical, and the like, too. May Americans take some small comfort in the fact we aren’t the only humans on the planet being screwed over by billionaires.) 

But what are these corporations’ motives for co-opting our governments? Let’s follow one particular money trail to see what’s happening.

The US spent over $858 billion dollars in military spending this past year. Possibly it was closer to $1 trillion dollars (that’s trillion with a “t” not a “b”), but we may never know the exact amount since the Department of Defense has never passed any of its audits in the past five years since they first started doing them. Plus, most experts count money that is credited to other agencies like the Department of Energy as being part of the US military spending as well, because money that goes toward nuclear power includes the making of radioactive materials to construct nuclear warheads for bombs. The total sum going towards the manufacturing, perfecting, maintaining, storing, and then using of these weapons is probably unknowable in any given year. It’s mind-boggling how great a bookkeeper’s nightmare the US DoD accounting system is and how confusing the actual costs of hidden expenditures (such as nuclear bombs) are.

Is this done on purpose or by accident? You tell me. The CEOs of the military industrial complex that gladly accept US taxpayers’ money don’t discuss it with us—and why should they? It’s their money in their opinion, and it’s their puppets who are foisted upon the American voters every election via a really cool trick called propaganda.

I’m certain you’ve been a victim of propaganda before. The US is well known for its propaganda tactics. If you have ever been told that you had to vote for Blue Candidate because Red Candidate is the devil himself and Blue is marginally better because he doesn’t have a Twitter account, then you’ve probably been a victim of propaganda. Because when the truth is revealed, the voters will discover that both Blue and Red accepted large sums of cash from the very same corporations. The corporations tricked you into thinking somehow these two candidates were actually different when the only meaningful differences were superficial ones.

Taxpayers’ money keeps flowing into the coffers of the military industrial complex. Corporations such as Raytheon, Northrup Grumman, Lockheed Martin, Boeing, and the like made record profits in 2022. And why is that? Could it be something to do with whatever particular Red or Blue person is in office? Or could it simply be because the US political-economic system is set up to allow our tax money to continually flow into the coffers of military industrial complex machine because corporations in reality own and run our government?

I go with the second conclusion. Why? US government policy toward private corporations hasn’t changed in any significant way since the last century (except to collude more closely with them), so whoever holds office is immaterial. But I’ve analyzed the proxy war propaganda over the past year and concluded that if ordinary Americans actually understood how the Minsk Agreements were violated by the US and NATO in order to start another endless war to generate even more business for the arms manufacturers, investment firms like BlackRock, and Big Oil/LNG, they would have never been supportive of throwing billions of dollars worth of weapons into the hands of a corrupt political puppet whose name appears in the Pandora Papers over and over again.

The U.S. power alliance could very easily have prevented this war with a few low-cost concessions like enshrining Ukrainian neutrality, rolling back its war machinery from Russia’s borders and sincerely pursuing detente with Moscow instead of shredding treaties and ramping up Cold War escalations--Caitlin Johnstone, Unprovoked!

Read Caitlin's entire article and click on the links. It's amazing how clear you see things when you blow the dust of propaganda away. Feel better? Let’s repeat the last line of the Serenity Prayer together:

And the wisdom to know the difference.

It’s time to wise up to how you’ve been played. The system is rigged against you if you’re a working class American, in the bottom 90%. The politicians/puppets use propaganda and lies to make you feel like you have some modicum of control when, in reality, you don’t. The corporations of the military industrial complex and Big Oil are pulling the strings and reaping the monetary benefits from sanctions and endless wars that starve, kill, and maim our fellow workers in far away places. The corporations don’t care how blood-stained the reputation of the US becomes as long as they continue to profit from it.

Now that you’re wiser, it’s time to start building up your courage to fight back against these inhuman injustices like the civil rights activists of the 1950s and 60s did. You're going to speak out boldly like Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. did, even if does cost you dearly because you know our children deserve better.

You're going to fight like hell for the positive change you want to see. You have to in order to exert some control over what goes on in this world. Stand up so that ordinary, working class, little guys like yourself don’t keep getting lied to and hurt by sociopathic CEOs who will never have our best interests at heart. You realize now to sit on the sidelines and let the corporations win is to sign your own death sentence.

Related Articles/Videos:

McCarthy Finally Elected House Speaker https://www.commondreams.org/news/mccarthy-elected-house-speaker

The Year Nothing Fundamentally Changed--Again https://bernie2016.blogspot.com/2022/12/2022-year-nothing-fundamentally.html 

Biden's Expansion of Title 42 Takes Us Further From Humane Border Policy https://truthout.org/articles/bidens-expansion-of-title-42-takes-us-further-from-humane-border-policy

More Than Half of Police Killings are Mislabled, New Study Says  https://www.nytimes.com/2021/09/30/us/police-killings-undercounted-study.html 

OpenSecrets--find out how much and where your elected officials are getting their money from https://www.opensecrets.org/

Princeton Study: Congress Literally Doesn't Care What You Think https://act.represent.us/sign/problempoll-fba/

Move to Amend (How to fight Citizens United) https://www.movetoamend.org/

Why the US is Losing the Fight to Ban Toxic Chemicals https://www.propublica.org/article/toxic-chemicals-epa-regulation-failures

US Now World's Top LNG Exporter as Europe Boycotts Cheaper Russian Gas https://popularresistance.org/us-now-worlds-top-lng-exporter-as-europe-boycotts-cheaper-russian-gas/

The High Cost of Blowing Up the World https://www.zerohedge.com/geopolitical/high-cost-blowing-world-ukraine-2023-ndaa 

Pentagon Can't Account for Half Their Assets, Fails New Audit https://youtu.be/Jkb-pTQLERw

Proof Twitter Censored Anyone CIA & FBI Told Them To https://youtu.be/Vyva84KG-nA

Dems Demanded Twitter Find Phony Russiagate Evidence https://youtu.be/tWleLq4h4qk  

Silencing the Lambs. How Propaganda Works https://www.mintpressnews.com/john-pilger-silencing-lambs-how-propaganda-works/281884/ 

Europe and the Legitimization of Deception  https://scheerpost.com/2023/01/08/patrick-lawrence-europe-and-the-legitimization-of-deception/

Unprovoked! https://scheerpost.com/2023/01/09/caitlin-johnstone-unprovoked/

Despite Outcries about Inflation, Major Arms Makers Are Doing Just Fine https://www.forbes.com/sites/williamhartung/2022/10/28/despite-outcries-about-inflation-major-arms-makers-are-doing-just-fine/

BlackRock Accused of "Trying to Cash in on the Disaster..." https://www.commondreams.org/news/blackrock-ukraine

Ukraine Prepares to Give Free Rein to Property Developers https://scheerpost.com/2023/01/03/ukraine-prepares-to-give-free-rein-to-property-developers/

Revealed: "Anti-Oligarch" Ukrainian President's Offshore Connections https://www.theguardian.com/news/2021/oct/03/revealed-anti-oligarch-ukrainian-president-offshore-connections-volodymyr-zelenskiy

US Spreads Misery Across the Globe Imposing Sanctions on a Third of Humanity https://popularresistance.org/u-s-spreads-misery-across-the-globe-imposing-sanctions-on-a-third-of-humanity/

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