Thursday, December 29, 2011


TOMBSTONE BLUES: We're screwed. And we're only going to get screweder.

With Gary Hooser's decision earlier this year to abandon a run for congress in the 2nd Hawai`i District it looks like we are going to get stuck the most revoltin' of developments- Mufi Hannemann living the Life of Riley, having a virtual "lock" on next November's election.

We didn't need to be reminded that with today's news that the Hawaii Teamsters & Allied Workers Union Local 996 has endorsed him, the carpetbagging creep moves one step closer to election. He's already the poster boy for all that's wrong with so-called American democracy's campaign finance system- one that produces winners by virtue of an overflowing war chest that scares off the good guys like Hooser from even entering the race.

Oh sure, there are some good candidates challenging the Moofster in the Democratic Primary- we'd vote for patients' rights advocate Rafael del Castillo in a hot second. Or maybe even Hilo attorney Bob Marx... although by virtue of the singular fact that Marx is not Hannemann.

But the only candidate with two shots of beating Mufi- slim and none to be specific- is Honolulu City Councilwoman Tulsi Gabbard, a bigoted piece of crap like her father who plays down her homophobia and plays up her supposed environmental credentials so as to woo unsuspecting progressives.

The fact is that Hooser came within whisker of deciding to take on Hannemann but, at the last moment, decided there was no way he could raise the kind of money it would take to beat him is a case study in all that's wrong with American elections in the 21st century.

Yeah, it will be soooo self-satisfying to vote for Castillo... just like voting for presidential candidate Dr. Jill Stein who is seeking the Green Party nod. In both cases, come next November, we'll be able proudly have the distinctly unsatisfying privilege of saying "well don't blame me- I didn't for for him/her."

This is where we usually offer some kind of pie-in-the-sky solution- like supporting the "Move to Amend (MTA)" group that seeks to reverse the perverse Citizens United, US Supreme Court (SCOTUS) ruling which invented "corporate personhood (CP)" by making money a form of speech. The problem is that not only are few aware of MTA- although they will be becoming more and more aware of it this summer as hundreds of millions of anonymous, "independent (yeah, right) expenditure" dollars flow into the presidential race- but ending CP still wouldn't take money completely out of elections. Full public financing of all elections would but, although some say it is possible under existing SCOTUS rulings (Buckley v Valeo), it might take a constitutional amendment to do it like any CP countering measure would.

But people- even progressives- seem to be more interested in half-assed movements that blame the individual senators and congresspersons rather than the corporate monolith that perverts the system that elects them. We especially like the one to cut congressional pay and benefits as if making sure that millionaires and billionaires were the only ones who could afford to be in congress would somehow reverse the trend toward making "independently wealthy" a requirement to serve in office.

Yesterday we came across a blog post by Robert Reich former Secretary of Labor under President Bill Clinton and currently Chancellor's Professor of Public Policy at the University of California at Berkeley entitled "The Defining Issue: Not Government’s Size, but Who It’s For."

In it he details "how the surge of cynicism now engulfing America isn’t about government’s size. The cynicism comes from a growing perception that government isn’t working for average people. It’s for big business, Wall Street, and the very rich instead."

Yet even the most progressive of progressives seems to get their jollies by climbing on the tea-bagger "government: bad" bandwagon. Though, like voting for Castillo or Stein, it can be really satisfying- and for pundits all too easy- to ridicule the very nature of government based on what passes for democracy in America today, unless and until all of us focus on the obscenity of the legalize bribery that passes for a democratic electoral system, we'll be stuck with the stream of gags that substitute for a functional system of representative republican democracy.

Place the final joke here yourself... we're not in the mood today.

1 comment:

scotty sagum said...

Sorry Andy, but Hoosier is not one of the good guys! just try to ask him for help when you need him like I did, and you'll get NOTHING but EXCUSES!!!! Scotty