Alan Hart : Can American leaders lead?

Alan Hart December 16, 2012 1
Alan Hart : Can American leaders lead?

The short answer it seems to me is “No” — they will never be able to lead so long as America’s political system remains as corrupt as it is. And the only way to clean up the corruption is by putting election campaigning off limits to lobby funding.

By Alan Hart

The longer version of the headline question is this: Given the corruption of the American political system which puts what passes for democracy up for sale to the highest lobby bidders, will any U.S. President (not only a second-term Obama) ever be able to shape and implement policies which best serve the longer term interests of all Americans rather than the short-term interests of the most powerful lobbies?

Usually that question or something very like it is asked in the context of the Israel-Palestine conflict, when a president has demonstrated with rhetoric a desire to advance the so-called peace process and has been blocked by the Zionist (not Israel) lobby and its stooges in Congress. But today, following the slaughter of the innocents in Connecticut, the question has a domestic context.

Something close to despair could be detected in a piece written for the New York Times by op-ed columnist Charles M. Blow. His opening words were these: “Another day, another mass shooting in America. When, and how, will this end? In fact, will it ever end?”

Blow quoted the words of a visibly shaken and tearful President Obama. “As a country, we have been through this too many times. We’re going to have to come together and take meaningful action to prevent tragedies like this, regardless of the politics.”

Blow went on: “I agree. I only hope that in coming days we flesh out what ‘meaningful action’’ means in policy terms. If not now, when? After the next shooting? How many more deaths and mass shootings will it take for Washington to begin to lead the country in a deeper conversation about sensible gun controls? What will it take for our politicians to take firm and principled positions on gun policies and stand up to the gun lobby in this country? Surely this is a moment that calls all of us to reckoning.”

Echoing Blow’s despair, the New York Times concluded its editorial with these words: “The more that we hear about gun control and nothing happens, the less we can believe it will ever come. Certainly it will not unless Mr. Obama and Congressional leaders show the courage to make it happen.”

The comment of New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, who is also co-chairman of Mayors Against Illegal Guns, seemed to be driven more by real anger than despair. He said in a statement: “Calling for ‘meaningful action’ is not enough, We need immediate action. We have heard all the rhetoric before. What we have not seen is leadership – not from the White House and not from Congress. That must end today.”

Fine words but they take me back to my headline question – Can American leaders lead?

The short answer it seems to me is “No” – they will never be able to lead so long as America’s political system remains as corrupt as it is. And the only way to clean up the corruption is by putting election campaigning off limits to lobby funding.

That is the real reckoning to which Americans are being called.

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One Comment »

  1. Rexw December 16, 2012 at 10:49 am - Reply

    ……….putting election campaigning off limits to lobby funding.”   This final comment by Alan Hart could solve so many things that are wrong in the US in 2012. Therefore, with all due respect to optimistic thinking, a reversal of this anti-demcratic practice (one person, one vote) it is unlikely to happen. Too much to lose.   Such a practice, now entrenched into the American way of thinking, is the final gasp of capitalism.

     

    Let the foreign owned corporate fifth column lobby groups like AIPAC decide what happens in the US. It will go from here to being the norm as is the use of guns, a current topic….for a week ot two.  One doesn’t hear any segment of the US population crying out for change, well, not for long. The NRA, thumping the drum with the Constitution and its inherent weaknesses, obvious to all,  is the lobbying equal to AIPAC. A political funder, extraordinaire, equalling graft, corruption and all these special attributes, now part of the US culture. Embedded.  

     

    Sure, perhaps someone one day will make it illegal to have ‘rocket launchers, anti-tank missiles, hand grenades and 25-pounder Howitzers’ from being in private ownership out in suburban garages. Well, it is almost allowable.  Being realistic, we may see restrictions put in place to make it illegal to own assault rifles like the one used last week.

     

    However,  following these shocking but all too familiar events in the US, everyone will continue to jump up and down for a month and then it will vanish into the less important media stories. All it will take is if someone like Obama, not known for any type of progressive action,  just rhetoric,  to decide on something more controversial like a stand-off against China on some trumpted up matter, a false flag exercise engineered by Israel’s Mossad or an Israeli-inspired burst of aggression against Iran, the favourite sport this month. Just watch the New York Times respond to that. No percedntage for them in the other subject.  

     

    One shouldn’t ever be under any illusion that the US media is interested in the news, honest news that is. It is all very well to quote writers in the New York Times on subjects of some interest to the American people, as today, but the next election in Israel will soon take such stories of the front pages.  That’s the way it is…..90% of all media owned by just 6 Zionist groups. That makes Israel front page re-manufactured, highly fictionialised  news every day with never a mention of Palestine, off the pages already. It is so transparent, obvious to all.   Try legislating to change that………. giving every day Americans ownership of their own news, free of bias, Israel propaganda, the influence of money.

     

    The Constitution ensures freedom of the press, clearly, but in those halcyon days of constructing this  once lauded and then relevant document when we saw with thye architects a predominance of decent values and personal qualities, there was no such creature as a Zionist,  so no one addressed or mandated that only  the truth could only be published. How could they know that a friendly little Jew would morph into a Zionist.   Change that and you get America back to a country sitting on the right side of decency.   Achieve that and you might also see elected representatives,  honest American people other  than the likes of Schumer, Liebeman, Cantor, Ros-Lehtinen, McCain and 60% of the remainder, some chance of a decent health scheme, equitable taxation and some internal pride once again and perhaps, over time, develop some respect from the rest of the world for these qualities.   Right now, it’s life as before. No change, no advancement, sliding down the slippery slope to being the Israel puppet state and all that means.   In that and other regards, a laughing stock. Just a big bully with a UN  veto

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