Sunday 4 November 2012

A letter to American voters

Dear American voter,

I'm English and I'm going to share my opinion on American politics. I know how much you are going to appreciate it; after all us Brits are the true experts in sham "democracy". Our "democracy" is even more crude and unrepresentative than yours.

Our "democracy" is so unrepresentative and anti-democratic, in England it is the unwritten law that "democracy" must be written in inverted commas. Our upper house is like your Senate but totally unelected. Can you believe that? How would you feel about an unelected senate?

In the past. Lords of the manor simply inherited their seats in the upper house by virtue of being the sons of their wealthy landowner fathers, hence the name; House of Lords. Nowadays nearly everyone that sits in that undemocratic place is a direct appointee of the executive. 11 UK Prime Ministers between them have created over 1,000 peerages (who remain in the House of Lords for the rest of their lives, whilst it takes around 35-40 million voting citizens to elect just 650 members of the House of Commons on four to five year terms.

Even worse than the farcically anti-democratic house of Lords, is the fact that the UK has an unelected head of state called the Queen. Not only is she the head of the government, she is also the head of the Church of England. In comparison, at least the US has a theoretical "separation of church and state".

Worst of all, Britain doesn't even have a written constitution like the United States, our politicians can just make it up as they go along.

If you ever find yourself worrying that American democracy is nothing bust a sham based on an illusion of choice, just thank God you're not British.

Anyway, back to the point, which is to express my views on American politics. I can just imagine how these opinions from an Englishman would go down so darned well with an American audience.

The two main candidates in your election are obvious corporate shills. Anyone that doesn't accept this as a fact, doesn't know the first thing about American so-called democracy. We are talking about people so daft that they don't even understand the vastness of corporate political donations, the immense manpower of corporate lobbying or the actual composition of the two main parties. People like this should not be allowed to vote. However, this kind of simple-minded reactionary cretin seems to make up a hefty proportion of the US electorate, so disenfranchising them would be out of the question. The only solution would seem to be to give them a "distraction party" to vote for. A party led by clown like morons that quite obviously lack the mental faculties to run the most powerful nation on Earth, something like the British Official Monster Raving Loony Party. The only danger of course, is that the size of the credulous idiot demographic is severely underestimated and the American public end up electing some kind of deranged chimp in a suit!

Mitt Romney - The liar

Mitt Romney is is exactly the same kind of vacuous, dishonest, pathologically self-serving, intellectual-lightweight as Britain's David Cameron. Just look at the socio-economic chaos Cameron and his bunch of toffs are creating in the UK as a foretaste of what a Romney Presidency would be like.

Romney is such a dishonest, flip-flopping, self-serving, intellectual lightweight he makes "Tricky Dicky" Richard Nixon look like a man of towering integrity; he makes Ronald Reagan look like a man of towering intellect; and he makes George Bush II look like a man of extreme competence.

Romney will say absolutely anything if he thinks it serves his own self-interest. If he's talking to a crowd of extremely wealthy Republicans, he'll promise to cut taxes for the wealthy and slash public services, if he's talking to an audience of ordinary Americans, he'll promise not to cut taxes for the wealthy and to protect jobs and services. He is quite clearly a man of remarkable dishonesty and duplicity. One hopes that the American public are able to see his glaring lack of integrity. I mean he's "flip-flopped" so many times it is impossible to actually imagine what he would actually get up to if handed supreme power, except of course it would be some kind of evil money making scam, such as the activities he got up to at Bain Capital.

The fact that a transparent liar like Mitt Romney has managed to get himself this close to supreme power is a rude indictment of the state of American democracy.

Barack Obama - The dreambreaker

Obama swept to power during one of the great (if not the greatest) American financial crises, he won the Presidency on a mandate of "change"
and "Obama-mania". But he immediately appointed dozens of the very people who caused the economic meltdown, or did absolutely nothing to prevent it (Tim Geithner, Larry Summers, Ben Bernanke, Gary Gensler, Mary Shapiro and many others)  into all the top economic and many of the top political positions within his administration. Obama's coziness with the banks has been one of the hugely disappointing things about his Presidency. It doesn't matter how conservative or liberal you are, corruption is surely something that the President should attempt to stamp out, instead of giving a free-pass to everyone involved in the economic crisis (except Bernie Madoff).

Another major disappointment has been Obama's continuation of costly interventionist US military policy. American wars have cost the US economy $ trillions it can't afford and cemented the impression that America is a land of cruel oppressive imperialists. Instead of being the nation that reluctantly but heroically rescued Europe in Two World Wars, America has transformed itself into the global warmonger in chief. The Obama administration has done absolutely nothing to counter the common impression that the US is the global bully-in-chief.

It does seem that Obama is miles ahead of Romney on social policy; I mean he has said that gays should have the right to marry and he doesn't seem like the kind of guy that would force women to carry their rape babies. Despite this slightly more socially progressive stance, Obama still signed the grotesquely anti-constitutional NDAA, which revokes even more constitutional rights than Bush destroyed with the so-called Patriot Act.

Obama is clearly just playing the social progressive card to hoover up the votes of people that are terrified that Romney is so dishonest that they can only guess at how malicious his social policies might actually be, whatever is most profitable to him and his associates one would imagine.

Gary Johnson - The race to the bottom guy

Gary Johnson is the latest fundamentalist libertarian trying to win the Presidency. His social and foreign policies are actually way to the left of Obama and his economic policies are way to the right of Mitt Romney.

On social policy Johnson is a classic liberal, he would repeal the Patriot Act and the NDAA, he would end the war on drugs, fully legalise marijuana and he believes that gay marriage is a constitutionally guaranteed right, not something that should be left up to the individual states to decide for themselves.

On foreign policy Johnson is a non-interventionist. He would remove US troops from Afghanistan, oppose any attempts to launch yet another multi-trillion war to "liberate" Iran's oilfields and he would attempt to reduce the enormous burden on the US taxpayer of maintaining countless military bases all over the world.

On economic policy he is a fundamentalist anti-tax libertarian, intent on turning the US into a vast tax-haven by completely abolishing corporation tax and income tax. These policies would trigger a destructive race-to-the-bottom in "main street" America and the rest of the world alike. Johnson's economic policies would trigger the corporate endgame, with all countries suddenly slashing corporation taxes, labour rights and business regulations in order to incentivize corporate interests to remain in their countries. Corporate interests would increase their already disproportionate share of the wealth, workers would get poorer and the environment would be annihilated. Such a race to the bottom would be hugely detrimental to everyone but the corporate elite and their shills. A strategy that would prolong the American empire at the cost a creating vast social and economic instability, in "main street" America and across the World.

Absurdly the US mainstream press describe Johnson's policy of marijuana legalisation, not his loopy economic policies as his "most controversial". How is it possible for anyone to accept the mainstream media narrative that Johnson's plan to stop locking up tens of thousands of people for nothing more than inhaling the fumes of a virtually harmless herb is more controversial than his plan to completely abolish corporation tax and turn the entire US economy into the largest tax-haven in the World?

Jill Stein - The lost cause

Jill Stein is the Green party candidate. There is not much point in talking about her; the Green Party's impressive list of policies; the fact that they are endorsed by America's greatest living intellectual; or the fact that unlike their political rivals, they refuse to take corporate donations.

The American corporate media has smashed the green movement with more success than green-demonisation campaigns in any other country, which is sad, because the origins of the green political movement can be traced back to the protest movements of the 1970s.

The green movement is making headway in many of the World's richest and most powerful nations, Germany and Japan are leading the way, China have started talking up their green credentials and even oil rich Saudi Arabia have set a policy of greenification before their oil runs out.

The United States is a country where more people believe that the Earth was hand crafted by God on a busy week just a few thousand years ago than believe in the possibility that environmental pollution could be causing global warming. What makes this so absurd is that American business and foreign policy is absolutely dominated by oil. If Christian God really did make the world, and all the oil reserves just a few thousand years ago, one wonders why on Earth he decided to put such huge oil reserves in non-Christian countries like Saudi Arabia, Iraq and Iran.

Rosanne Barr - The loudmouth

To non-Americans, Rosanne Barr is a typical American citizen, she is brash and opinionated, she is a self-made woman with a cruel sense of humour, but beneath it all she has a good honest heart. Rosanne burst into the American consciousness by deliberately mutilating the last two lines of the national anthem at a baseball game back in 1990. She then cemented her place as an American celebrity with her long-running sitcom about American working-class life "Rosanne".

She tried to get the nomination for the Green party, but when she failed she quickly secured the nomination of the Peace and Freedom party instead.

Her name won't even appear on the ballot paper in many states, but she is certainly worth a mention because she is the kind of working-class liberal feminist candidate that would absolutely infuriate the reactionary Republican right. But as a self-made individual she should rightly be considered an American working-class hero.

The other no-hopers

Just like the vast majority of American voters, I don't know enough about the other no-hopers like Rocky Anderson and Virgil Goode to hold any valid opinion about them, except the certainty that they have as much chance of making it to the White House as Mozambique has of overcoming the United States to become the most powerful economy on Earth in the next couple of days.


As an Englishman it is clearly not my place to tell you how to vote. However, I believe I have every right to express my opinion on who I would vote for if I was an American citizen.

Firstly, whatever the circumstances, I'd vote against Mitt Romney. Letting a duplicitous, manipulative, self-interested and amoral cretin like that into the White House would be a disaster for the vast majority of Americans, a disaster for the American economy and a disaster for the World. If I was a resident of one of the swing states that actually gets to determine the US Presidency I'd have to hold my nose and vote for Barack Obama. 

If I lived in one of the majority of states that are traditionally blue or red, where it doesn't really matter who you vote for; I'd cast my vote for one of the other candidates as a protest vote, probably Rosanne, simply because voting for Rosanne Barr as President would have seemed absolutely unimaginable back in the 1990s.

Whichever way I cast my hypothetical vote, one of the two corporate backed candidates is going to win. I find myself hoping that Obama wins, simply becuase the other guy is pretty much evil personified. But then, the lesser of two evils is still evil, right?

All the best my friend, and good luck whatever the outcome.

Thomas G. Clark (Another Angry Voice)

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