Thursday, May 27, 2004

Blogging the good fight . . .

Rock Against Bush . . . pUNk FucKIng RoCK!!!
Woah, man. I just purchased my very own copy of Rock Against Bush Vol. 1, a compilation by such punk luminaries as NoFX and such non-luminaries as Sum-41 with a DVD featuring bits and pieces from a couple of MoveOn.org movies and such . . . and I have got to say I'm glad to see that A. Punk is far from dead and B. Punk hasn't lost its original battle cry of FUCK THE GOVERNMENT.

But it's not just about flipping the goverment off these days, it is about DOING something. Getting the word out, getting people off their asses and getting stuff done. Meeting up, protesting, writing letters, making sure that everyone knows just how much they personally are being screwed by the administration.

One of the more striking bits on the DVD is a brief trailer for a longer documentary titled "No More Enrons."

For all that the war has done, for all that the economy has failed, for some reason the Enron thing really drives home to me what this administration has always been about. Screwing the little guy for big, fat, sweaty profits. Let's review:

1. Energy- electricity is necessary for modern life. Everyone needs it for cooking, heat, light, blah blah blah. People need electricity.

2. Retirement- People work their whole lives saving enough for their last couple of decades so they can really live it up. Buy cruise tickets, RVs- and these days, Harleys. People expect to have their retirment kept safe by their bosses, their CFOs, the private companies that are contracted to keep their money.

3. Connections- Bush was an energy man before he was sort of elected. The largest contributor to his sort-of election was Enron. They had a vested interest in having him as president. Not because he was the best man for the job, not because they agreed with his born-again Christian values, not because they thought he could make the world a better place. But becaue he could help them get around regulations in the energy industry.

4. Greed. While Enron was raking it in from utilities customers (that is, everyone with a house) they paid less in taxes than I spend on shoes. They paid less in taxes than the employees who were minding their 401Ks and sat smiling at meetings where Ken Lay said Enron could look forward to many more successful years. They placed millions in off-shore tax shelters while they laid of employees with a 2-hour notice.

These four elements of the story are the most troublesome when put together. Greed and connections placed millions of Californians in the dark while rolling black outs saved Enron millions of dollars. Greed and connections put hundreds of Enron employees out of work and out their retirement funds, some only a handful of years before they planned on retirement. Greed and connections got Mr. Bush elected despite the fact that more people voted against him, because of the fact that thousands of voters were "marked" as felons by Katherine Harris (on the board of directors for the Bush for President campaign, and also the Secretary of State- talk about your conflict of interest) and the fact that people were ticketed for "loitering" while waiting in line for the polls . . . Greed and connections bought the election and I'm scared to death that it's going to happen again. Because greed and connections trump the will of the people.

Here's why people voted for Bush in the first place:
-He gave them $600
-He had no disclosed record of sexual misconduct
-They didn't like Gore

But that doesn't really matter. All those things have no real bearing because even the people that did vote for Bush don't really matter to him. He has no regard for the American people, not his supporters and especially not his detractors. The expensive ads are a smokescreen and aren't directed at gaining voters for Bush but at taking voters from Kerry. They are just a way to burn some of the money he's getting from the vast pockets of his corporate sponsors.

My prediction is that he will not get the popular vote. He didn't get it last time and he's not gonna get it this time. But as we've seen, the popular vote means little. My hope is that he won't find a way to sleaze himself into a second term. My hope is that the popular vote will be undeniably against Bush. My hope is that the system will somehow redeem itself. This is my hope . . . but as time goes on, hope seems to hold the same diminishing value as a single vote.

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