with Chris Hedges
RT America on Apr 4, 2020
On the show this week, Chris Hedges talks to Constitutional scholar, Bruce Fein, about the death of the US Constitution.
“The Democratic Party isn’t about social and economic justice, democracy or ecological survival. It isn’t even mainly about winning elections, it’s about serving and colluding with corporate sponsors and climbing the neoliberal capitalist oligarchy. Think Bill (NAFTA) Clinton, the multi-millionaire head of The Clinton Foundation, think Barack (Trans-Pacific Partnership) Obama who has entered the economic oligarchy now as a reward to his dutiful service to the nation’s unelected dictatorship of capital.”
The tools of nonviolent action and the skills of struggle are as vital to these times as reading, writing, and arithmetic. Training to use them is as essential as learning how to use a computer. The ability to boycott and strike is as important as the ability to drive a car. Every citizen who knows how to use email should also know how to protest, walk-out, shut-down, occupy, blockade, and more. This is the only way the power of the people can hold the power of oligarchs in check.
If we, the people, wrote a constitution now, what would go in it? Equal rights for women, men, non-binary, and undefined? Caps on wealth tied to poverty levels? Rights of nature? Reparations for past crimes, wrongs, and thefts? Limits on military spending? A free and open Internet? Abolition of mass incarceration, or the entire prison system; replaced with restorative and community justice? Free healthcare for all? Living wages or universal basic income? Would we keep corporate personhood or the electoral college?
So often, underlying structures and institutions of oppression escape serious scrutiny amid our country’s most high-profile political dramas. Take the recent conviction of Jason Van Dyke, the white Chicago police officer caught on tape four years ago firing 16 shots into 17-year-old Laquan McDonald.
48South7th on Aug 31, 2011
Author Michael Parenti challenges his audience to learn about and advocate free speech in the face of oppression. From the origins of the Bill of Rights up to today’s challenges by the FBI and other government entities, Parenti says, it is essential to stand up for one’s rights. He spoke at an event sponsored by the South Bay Committee Against Political Repression.
[By the latter part of May, 1970, feelings about the war in Vietnam had become almost unbearably intense. In Boston, about a hundred of us decided to sit down at the Boston Army Base and block the road used by buses carrying draftees off to military duty. We were not so daft that we thought we were stopping the flow of soldiers to Vietnam; it was a symbolic act, a statement, a piece of guerrilla the after. We were all arrested and charged, in the quaint language of an old statute, with “sauntering and loitering” in such a way as to obstruct traffic.
Most of the media’s attention on journalist Michael Wolff’s “explosive” new book Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House has focused on the disclosure that Trump’s former political strategist Steve Bannon used the words “treasonous” and “unpatriotic” to describe Donald Trump, Jr. and presidential son-in-law Jared Kushner’s infamous June 2016 meeting with Russians claiming to possess damaging information on Hillary Clinton.
Nobody, not racist warmakers, not imaginary non-racist warmakers, not founding fathers, not radical protesters should be made into a deity, larger than life, in marble or bronze, on horseback or otherwise. Nobody is that flawless, and nobody’s story so withstands the test of time. We need human-sized statues and memorials of whole movements.
As the Trump wrecking crew ramps up its destructive campaign against federal health and safety protections and social services for impoverished, disabled and vulnerable people (young and old) the latest targets of their ire are the federal civil servants who faithfully keep our government functioning here and abroad.