Re: [sixties-l] After the Election >

From: Jeffrey Blankfort (
Date: 11/06/00

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    Marty Jezer wrote:
    >      In areas of foreign policy and global economics, there is
    > little difference between Bush and Gore. Indicative of their
    > support for an imperialistic foreign policy, both believe that
    > the loony-tune invasion of Grenada was a justified military
    > action. Both are also obsessed with Fidel Castro. The major
    > trouble spot outside of the Middle East is Colombia where Clinton
    > and Gore are already sending money, weapons, and advisors. With
    > Colombia's oil-rich neighbor, Venezuela, cozying up to Castro's
    > Cuba, there is potential for further American aggression no
    > matter who is commander-in-chief in the White House.
    Marty, you left out the sanctions against the people of Iraq, and the
    situation in the Middle East is more than "a trouble spot."  Gore's long
    history of financial support from pro-Israel backers makes him more
    dangerously compromised in that arena than Bush, who probably couldn't
    find Israel on the map.
    >      Gore and Bush also share common ground in supporting
    > corporate control of the national and global economy. This is the
    > issue of the future, around which a progressive movement is
    > likely to grow. Free trade, it should be said, is not the
    > problem. Trade should be encouraged; it creates wealth and breaks
    > down national barriers. What's crucial is who makes the rules.
    > Worker rights and environmental protections have to take
    > precedence over corporate profits. Gore, Bush and their
    > respective parties are beholden to corporate money and lack the
    > political autonomy to challenge corporate priorities.
    There is no such as thing as free trade when inequalities exist and are
    expanding rather than contracting. And the wealth it creates are largely
    for those corporations that control it and their subsidiaries.  It does
    not create wealth for the masses of the people, if I may use that
    expression, although lower prices for goods in consumer countries
    produced by cheap labor in the poorer countries give that illusion. And
    it is very much an issue of the moment, not of the future. It only seems
    that way because most of the progressive movement had for so long
    ignored it and most, still do not understand it.
    >      That's where campaign finance reform comes in, full public
    > funding. There's no hope for reform in a Bush administration.
    > John McCain aside, the Republican idea of campaign reform is to
    > prohibit labor unions from making contributions. Gore has
    > promised reform, and even endorsed full public financing; but
    > Clinton made similar noises and then did nothing. Full public
    > financing (the Clean Money Reform) won't happen until Congress
    > feels the heat of public pressure. As a consumer advocate, Nader
    > did not lead on this issue. I hope he will after the election.
    Genuine campaign reform is no more likely to happen under one
    administration or another. Neither the politicians or the contributors
    want it to stop. Every year the charade is played out in the headlines,
    virtually word for word. As Will Rogers said some four score years ago,
    "America has the best Congress money can buy." The only thing that has
    changed is the price. As for Gore's promises, this man can't tell the
    truth about anything and Marty and others want to believe him, as if
    Gore is somehow different than your average politician.
    >      A leader of a new movement must be willing to talk straight
    > to the public, even if he has to tell his most enthusiastic
    > supporters truths they don't want to hear. Nader has been a
    > disappointment in this regard. His argument that there are few
    > differences between Bush and Gore holds water only if one is
    > looking at the election from a revolutionary perspective. And
    > Nader's no revolutionary; he's more a progressive Democrat whose
    > issues have been abandoned by his party.
    I find it curious that Marty and others on this and other lists who are
    Gore supporters don't recognize what a number of journalists, media
    critics, and cartoonists, not the mention Saturday Night Live, have
    noticed.  There ARE few differences between Gore and Bush and one
    needn't be a revolutionary to see it.
    >      On specific issues like taxation, social security,
    > environmental protection, health care, human rights, and
    > education, there are important differences between Bush and Gore.
    > Even on issues of corporate dominance, Gore's support (however
    > compromised) for the public sector creates possibilities (from
    > regulations to tax credits) to pressure and encourage
    > corporations to adopt clean technologies. Under Bush's plan for
    > free market regulation, corporations have no incentive to risk
    > investments in green technology. The crisis of global warning
    > cannot wait for ideal solutions. Gore understands this; Bush
    > doesn't.
    I would appreciate examples of what Gore has done, as a key player in
    the Clinton administration, in the fields of health care, human rights
    and the environment that mark a line between him and Bush. Not Gore's
    words here, but actions, such as East Liverpool, Ohio, or do we want to
    overlook that? 
    >      The Supreme Court is another issue where Nader has been
    > disingenuous. Citing Warren and Brennan as great Republican
    > Justices is sophistry. They lived in a different era, when
    > racists and reactionaries were Democrats. Abortion is not the
    > only issue where the Supreme Court is a factor. Challenges to
    > Buckley v. Valeo, the horrible court decision which equates free
    > speech and money, are making their way to the Supreme Court.
    > Overturning Buckley would make it easier to get special interest
    > money out of politics. Bush is in debt to the right-wing and one
    > likely pay-off is his Supreme Court nominations.
    The Clinton-Gore Administration has pushed and past legislation that has
    eroded our civil liberties in a manner unprecedented in any Republican
    administration. And I should remind Marty, because, he is old enough to
    remember, that we were warned that if Nixon was elected, we would surely
    have fascism; then if Reagan was elected, we would surely have it; then
    Bush, etc. and here comes another wolf ticket with the young Dubya, and
    again catastrophe awaits us.
    >      SNIP
    > Either way, what counts is what happens after the election is over. We can't
    > give up on issues of importance. Whether it's President Gore or Bush or the
    > Congress
    > is Republican or Democrat, there will be work to be done. Once
    > the passions and arguments of this election are exhausted, those
    > of us who want peace, fairness, equality, and economic justice
    > will have to get over this election and start working together.
    If Gore is elected, NOW, People for the American Way, Gloria Steinhem,
    the AFL-CIO, NARAL, the Sierra Club, ADA, etc. will resume the
    somnambulant positions they took during the Clinton-Gore administration.
     To believe otherwise is to anticipate the tooth fairy. While there is
    no guarantee these folks will show signs of life if Dubya wins, we know
    Jesse Jackson will have his bags packed.
    Jeff Blankfort

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