Liberalism’s Death Bell Tolls, Part 3: J’accuse la gauche liberale
Richard Gale and Gary Null
Progressive Radio Network, March 6, 2013
It is past the time for liberalism to continue to function without a human face. It is time for it to stand accused alongside the conservative and religious right as an ideology dedicated to disaster capitalism, ecological demolition, environmental collapse and unending warfare. Progressive ideals and values, which today are nowhere to be found in our halls of power, need to frame the discussion for solutions. These values will not be found in corporate America, Wall Street, and Washington DC. It is a gross perversion to associate Obama with anything that is vaguely progressive.
In the 1890’s, the French author Emile Zola accused the French army and then French President Felix Faure of anti-Semitism, corruption and a cover-up that resulted in the wrongful sentencing of Alfred Dreyfus, a Jewish military officer charged with treason. Zola’s letter entitled J’accuse, and published in a popular Parisian newspaper, fueled a national controversy known as the Dreyfus Affair, which divided France. Many parallels can be drawn between the Dreyfus Affair and the current US political predicament. In both cases, there is a clash between tyrannical forces of power aiming to repress democracy in favor of security, and progressives who believe freedom and the pursuit of happiness trump federal and oligarchic paranoia and megalomaniac economic and social control.
In a recent interview on the Progressive Radio Network, religion scholar Andrew Harvey remarked, that “fierce truth is very hard to speak in America… people are absolutely terrified of the truth at the moment. Yet finding ways to tell this truth,” Harvey continued, “is the name of the game and to keep on telling it because the lies ranged against it are now hysterical.” Zola found his voice, as did Occupy Wall Street, and many dedicated progressive journalists and scholars who found the courage to speak against government corruption and untruths.
Appearing on Tavis Smiley’s program, Prof. Cornell West stated the hard factthat the majority of Americans refuse to accept. “Let us not be deceived: Nixon, Bush, Obama, they’re war criminals,” West said. “They have killed innocent people in the name of the struggle for freedom, but they’re suspending the law, very much like Wall Street criminals. The law is suspended for them, but the law applies for the rest of us.” Similar accusations have been made repeatedly by international legal scholars such as the international war crime expert Francis Boyle, former president of the National Lawyer’s Guild Marjorie Cohn, and many other progressives who have moved beyond the Blue-Red divide of partisan politics and champion human rights, non violence, economic equality and right of humans to have access to resources essential for life.
Although most alternative liberal media such as the Huffington Post, Democracy Now, and The Nation disagree on particular policies coming forth from Obama, when election time arrived, they abandoned their principles and chose to bolster the president’s image as the lesser of two evils and our only viable choice. Given the ease with which they betray their stated ideals, we must call into question the integrity of the liberal establishment altogether and ask whether it is wise to compromise. Just as there is deception behind Obama’s doctrine of compromise, so too liberalism has compromised on its higher moral values and has exposed its intellectual conceit and gross defects in character.
If you joined the liberal media and voted for Obama, then by extension this is what you have condoned and that you are now being accused of:
- Denying the severity of threats due to climate change and global warming and therefore accepting there is no urgency to take drastic measures to curb the rate of greenhouse gas emissions;
- Supporting the Keystone XL tar sand pipeline from Canada to the Texas coast that will destroy the health of countless Americans and result in unimaginable environmental disaster and the pollution of natural resources;
- Supporting the construction of new nuclear power reactors, believing in the myth and propaganda of clean coal, condoning indiscriminate hydrofracking in environmentally sensitive areas and allowing these industries to be subsidized by the taxpayer;
- Tolerating illegal wiretapping and a systematic surveillance of Americans by government intelligence agencies in allegiance with private cyber-security corporations;
- Overriding privacy laws so that no citizen is protected from surveillance through monitoring email, mobile phones, the internet, etc, because every citizen in the government’s eyes is a potential threat to the country’s security in its hysterical war against terrorism;
- Permitting the end of the Posse Comitatus Act of 1878 that forbids the US military from being deployed on domestic soil and acting against American citizens;
- Allowing the US to transform into a police state as state, county and township police departments are increasingly militarized by the US armed forces and become extensions of the Department of Defense;
- Ordering the silencing and prosecution of whistleblowers in government who come forth publicly to warn of criminal activities and corruption in government agencies that have an adverse effect on American’s well being and freedom of speech;
- Shredding habeas corpus and condoning the arrest and indefinite detention of American citizens based upon suspicion of terrorist affiliation;
- Transforming the civil court system into a military court model that erodes the legal rights of citizens against government tyranny upon which our legal system is based;
- Continuing the failed war on drugs, the rising incarceration of Americans for small misdemeanors, the privatization of a prison system that relies upon an infinite growth model of inmates, and the criminalization of poverty;
- Acting against the rights of workers and unions, favoring treaties such as NAFTA, GATT and the forthcoming Trans Pacific and Trans Atlantic partnerships that will further sell out American workers in return to greater profits to be overseas for the 1 percent;
- Giving preferential treatment to the medical insurance industry, which contributes nothing to the prevention and treatment of disease, and to write the healthcare laws for the country;
- Allowing every child and American to be screened for psychological illnesses to support a psychiatric industry that is based on fraudulent science and conflicts of interest with federal health agencies;
- Allowing the private agro-chemical industry headed by Monsanto and Dupont to write the agricultural laws in the country so that genetically modified crops and organisms are wrongfully considered safe for human and animal consumption and carry no risk to the environment;
- Denying the Federal Reserve’s role in demolishing America’s middle class and protecting the Wall Street oligarchy’s control over the Fed and US Treasury at the public’s expense;
- Judging Wall Street banks more worthy of forgiveness to receive debt relief and assistance from taxpayers than debt forgiveness to Americans who are underwater in their mortgages, credit, student loans and small business debts;
- Ignoring the laundering of drug money and criminal funds through major Wall Street banks and the federal government’s willingness to prevent the prosecution of bank executives who oversee these financial transactions;
- Increasing America’s military budget at home and abroad rather than feeding the nation’s starving children and dealing with the growing number of homeless who have suffered at the hands of the government’s compliance with Wall Street disaster capitalists;
- Ignoring the need for Congressional investigations and hearings into the former Bush-Cheney administration’s invasions of sovereign countries and their subsequent crimes against humanity;
- Condoning torture against the international rules set forth by the Nuremberg trials and the Geneva Convention;
- Contributing to the thousands of homicides and suicides committed by American soldiers and veterans who have been abused and forgotten by the US government during the Afghanistan and Iraq wars;
- Ordering the murder of numerous children, women and elderly in drone attacks;
- Backing despotic regimes with dismal human rights records such as Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Bahrain, Georgia and Israel’s apartheid of Palestine;
- Launching sanctions against Iran that are responsible for untold suffering of Iranian citizens and children without any international proof that Iran poses a nuclear threat;
- Fueling hatred of America by nations around the world who now perceive US military aggression as the world’s greatest threat to world peace;
From the perspective of universal values and higher spiritual ethics, these are among the many faults the Obama administration can be charged with. Many of Obama’s supporters will perceive these charges as indicators of progress compared to the Bush years. However, since the liberal media claims to align itself with progressive values, it must be held accountable for its blind ignorance of the Obama regime’s abuse of power as well as its attacks on alternative candidates who espouse the values of true liberalism.
Nobody considers whether the triumph of Rocky Anderson or Jill Stein triumph over Obama would have signaled a dramatic conquest of good over evil. Neither Anderson, Stein, or Gary Johnson would have continued the majority of Obama’s policies during the past four years. Obama’s NDAA would be stripped, military bases would be closing and negotiations would replace our current alpha aggression of military chest beating and economic threats as the major feature of US foreign policy. The rich and powerful would be paying their fair share and we would witness the gradual cessation of subsidizing corrupt, polluting industries. In addition, America would likely join other developed nations with a quality national healthcare system that is less expensive and available to all.
Until Americans summon the courage to stand up and demand an end to the corporate stranglehold on our institutions of power, we are almost guaranteed to head down a path that will send our nation, like every imperial power before it, straight into the dustbin of history.
Richard Gale is the Executive Producer of the Progressive Radio Network and the former head of communications for the State of the World Forum and the Gorbachev Foundation. Dr. Gary Null is the host of the nation’s longest running public radio program on natural health and the environment and a multi-award-winning director of progressive documentary films, including War on Health: The FDA Cult of Tyranny (2011) and Seeds of Death: Unveiling the Lies of GMOS (2012).