IMPERIAL GOOD COP/BAD COP FOR THE HOMEFRONT

We are all rubes. On average, we are well-heeled rubes, but rubes nonetheless.

I could go on about how the Republicans generally run their neofascist agenda right down our throats (gilding it with a bit of exaggerated piety and jingoism), while the Democrats (being slaves to much the same corporate master class) pretend to offer a kinder, gentler, more liberal/populist alternative to the Rethugs but run pretty much the same game. The system of checks and balances built into the two-party system ensures that the wealthy and powerful will always get what they want, while the rubes (everyone else) can pretend to fight over our own destinies at the ballot box.

There will be no significant reforms, because too many of us are (or imagine ourselves) deeply invested in the system as it is. That’s why I scoffed at the idea that the Democrats– having taken the majority in both houses of the U.S. Congress supposedly on the strength of anti-war sentiment– were going to do anything to derail the Bush administration’s plans for war. Keith Olbermann is right, but he’s also wrong. The Democrats haven’t failed their voters so much as their voters have fallen for their transparent ruse again.

The Dems as a group never intended to stand in the way of the Iraq imperial project’s expansion any more than they ever intended to stop its inception. Sure, a respectable number of them voted against letting the Bush cabal have its imperial war and occupation, and an even smaller number recently voted against letting it continue without condition. These were the votes of a tiny minority of truly decent democrats, and their numbers were padded by those who voted expediently in ‘safe’ districts.

For those of you who doubt that the Democratic Party as a whole is completely on board with the imperial project, I suggest you take a look at what they’ve agreed to fund. This is not a temporary diplomatic post, and it is not an ordinary embassy. It is designed to be a staging post for the Bushies’ dreams of conquering the Middle East under the laughable veneer of democracy promotion, much as Honduras served as a staging ground for the cold warriors’ incarnation of the Monroe Doctrine.

Tom Engelhardt has the skinny on this monstrosity and what it represents in the imperial life cycle. Arthur Silber explains why the Democrats own this whole thing now. We are so screwed.

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