I wrote this article years ago, but it's still valid today and wanted to share it with the GaG Community. You can find the original on my website: op-edaily.com.
Most people describe me as a ‘liberal'; some might even call me a “libtard’ or ‘Marxist’. Oddly enough, I’ve also been called a conservative, RepubTard, jackass, etc. So why bring this up? Because people get confused when someone doesn’t follow a party line. I don’t call myself an Independent, Democrat, or even a Republican because I believe labeling ourselves in that way backs us into a corner on the issues. We’ll be given a stereotype and somehow it sticks with us. Perhaps psychologically, it may warp our opinions to an extent. This is why I go with ‘other’ when asked about my party affiliation. I cannot get behind any of them because, quite frankly, they’re all the same.
I realize there are differences between the political parties we see in Washington today, but when it comes down to it, they are all in it for the same thing: money and power. They want that money; with money comes power - they want that too. I’m not certain if the power corrupts them or if they’re corrupt before obtaining power, but as Barack Obama has shown everyone — Democrats are no different from Republicans.
Democrats will vote for social programs like food stamps, housing assistance, education, and other helpful programs, whereas Republicans typically vote to remove those programs as they feel providing help to people stifles their ‘personal responsibility’ and a good work ethic. These are the main differences between the two. However, they both have (over the last 30 years at least) voted for boosting corporate profits via tax cuts for the wealthy (which doesn’t equate to job growth). They all seem to be pro-corporate profit and corporate welfare.
Should this surprise us? Absolutely not. According to OpenSecrets.org, the 2012 election cycle cost candidates approximately 6.3 billion dollars (2.6b for Presidential campaigns and 3.6b for Congressional campaigns). How is that even possible in a country just pulling out of an economic decline? How can we be okay with all that money being spent selling the American citizens on a few candidates that will ultimately maintain the status quo? We can’t and we shouldn’t.
When candidates are forced to shell out that much money, it means they must get the money from somewhere; that place is typically from a corporation, PAC (to hide donors), and only somewhat from constituents. When they take money to the tune of 6bn dollars, we can be certain they are now beholden to the very people that seek to lower our wages and enslave us. Since both Democrats and Republicans take money from these massive entities, it means they are only slight variations of the same objective - corporate profits and an increase in the income gap between the wealthiest among us and everyone else.
I bring President Obama into the picture because, for all intents and purposes, he is as Republican as Bush. He has continued the vast majority of programs Bush put at the American people’s doorstep: NSA, torture, lax immigration policies, war, and finally, the Affordable Care Act.
The Affordable Care Act was the biggest mistake of this century, and one of the biggest corporate profit makers in history. Now, people are forced to pay an insurance company (huge campaign contributor) for health care they either 1) don’t need or 2) can’t afford. Sure, the government says they will subsidize the cost, but what about the deductibles? What about the co-pays? Americans are already stretched thin, so President Obama’s solution (and many others – Republican and Democrat alike) is to make us send a portion of our paychecks every month to insurance companies that are already making record-breaking profits. Is that Democracy? No, that’s an Oligarchy.
I fear our country has turned into an oligarchy. Big corporations run our country by purchasing our politicians before they step foot anywhere in Washington. Mind you, this isn’t just on the federal level anymore — this is happening in our local governments as well. Gubernatorial candidates are now spending $10’s of millions, sometimes $100’s of millions on their campaigns. For this reason, it’s safe to say our leaders, whether they are Democrats or Republicans, Congressmen/women, Governors et al., are all fighting for the same team — corporations.
We must put a stop to this and call for campaign finance reform - real campaign finance reform. We also need a Constitutional Amendment that removes personhood status from corporations (because we all know that corporations are not people as they can live forever, they can't be jailed, and once they get too big they affect everyone's life). The only true way we can get corporations out of our politicians’ pockets is to remove personhood status, and then yank the need for money right out of the elections. Make it free. Make it fair. Make the US a Constitutional Republic once again.
What do you think?