US Politics: A Pseudo Two Party System Where The Left Has No Voice

Since the United States became an empire in 1945, a constant factor at play has been a single political agenda in regard to America’s foreign policy. Ever since Harry Truman the underlying goals of all US policy decisions overseas, made by Democrats and Republicans Presidents alike, have been to assert and expand US global imperialism. The Cold War curiously presented a source of clarity as the enemy, the USSR,  was clearly and conveniently  define as the “evil empire” which needed to be “contained” and ultimately defeated. The Korea war was in this context, so was the war in Vietnam.

The opposition to the Vietnam war in the late 1960s and early 1970s  was the last time the left in America had any impact on foreign policy decisions. The 1980s collapse of the Soviets allowed the only empire still standing to run amok unchallenged and without any real opposition from within because the logic of empire defined in short as “America number one” had Blitzkrieg the public discourse. This sense of American exceptionalism still prevails today.

America’s Political Choices: Either The Right Or The Far-right

Just like American consumers have the choice of either Pepsi or Coke, voters have the choice (if they want their votes to count or be counted) between Democrats or Republicans. And just like the soft drinks in question, the politicians elected in this staged election process  may have a slightly different flavor but are basically the same. Most of them are millionaires, and defend the interest of the establishment as opposed to the interest of the vast majority of the people. Politicians, either Republicans or Democrats, valiantly fight for banks, Wall Street, giant corporations and the pursuit of war for the profit of the industrial-military complex. Just like their soda equivalents Republicans and Democrats make your fat and sick so their good friends from the health-pharmaceutical complex can rip the financial rewards.

For someone who doesn’t live in the United States, it is hard to comprehend that the left has so little room in the parody of democracy that  has become America’s political system where  the real left has been reduced to only two voices lost in a political desert. It is of course Senator  Bernie Sanders and Congressman Dennis Kucinich. Both men  have been heroically outstanding in making their points for a true left agenda, but have been ineffective at making a real dent in the public discourse. To be fair, neither Sanders nor Kucinich get remotely the attention they deserve from corporate controlled US media. There is a reason for it, the challenge they bring to the debate doesn’t fit the status quo. And this is a crime of “lese majeste” in Washington where despite the theatrical “ideological” pseudo-fights the order of  the ruling class, profit and empire must remain the same.

I am not big on personal anecdotes, but in this instance I will make an exception. In March 2009 I was having dinner with some French journalists friends of mine. They were reporting on President Obama’s  wave of “hope and change” and what it could mean for American policies at large. I had to be the cold shower on their ticket parade. When I told them that President Obama will end up implementing policies more right wing than President Sarkozy they looked at me in disbelief. In their mind US Democrats were the left, and President Obama was a “liberal” Democrat.

More than two years later, I think my French colleagues would be fighting less against my argument. President Obama is a Reagan Democrat in the mold of his political ally corporate Democrat Bill Clinton. In America there is no representation for the left, there is the right, calling themselves Democrats, and the far-right, calling themselves Republicans. In America’s political landscape, bad actors ( Ronald Reagan) become mythological politicians and politicians ( Barack Obama) are good actors. Regardless of the Democrat or Republican name tags, it is always about preserving the same interests, and Americans are the ultimate victims of the giant con game.

Third Party Option: It Is Now Or Never

The so called “progressives” who got sucked  into supporting candidate Barack Obama over Hillary Clinton were conned into a carbon copy scheme. They were not the only one. The members of  the  jury for the Nobel  were also easy marks when they awarded war President Obama  a Nobel peace prize, so were my French journalist friends when they bought into the bogus concept of ‘hope and change” while they should have known better.

Two days ago President Obama unleashed his reelection campaign for 2012. His goal is to raised about one billion for this purpose. So far the challenger lineup  coming  from the far-right GOP seems weak. However, an unexpected hurdle for President Obama’s campaign bid could come from the left providing someone seize the moment. Dennis Kucinich gave it an unsuccessful try in 2008, and it doesn’t seem that Senator Sanders believe in himself enough to give it a shot. It leaves the American left with a few outsiders such as Michael Moore. The motto of  business as usual for the global corporate empire, enforced by the  military power of the United States, will never be challenged by either Democrats or Republicans , and it is time  now or never -before a full global corporate takeover- to challenge the status quo within the system with a credible alternative option.

Editor’s Note: All photographs by Gilbert Mercier.




13 Responses to US Politics: A Pseudo Two Party System Where The Left Has No Voice

  1. lewis brians April 5, 2011 at 11:02 pm

    what the left needs now more than ever is leadership . someone who is magnetic, fearless, knowledgeable, attractive and unknown . someone who has lived a real life and had quiet a bit of education . someone who has had experience in the performing arts and knows how to handle crowds and answer questions about themselves . someone like me .

  2. SungTow April 6, 2011 at 7:21 am

    Pretty much ALL of todays politicians are bought and paid for. Pretty sad indeed.

  3. mothrpe April 6, 2011 at 9:35 am

    Its true, im canadian. Our conservative party is basically the equivalent of the United States Democratic party.

    What boggles my mind is that people continue to call Republicans conservatives??? Whats conservative about their way of governing?? They are not conserving resources, money or restricting government power. Why do people call this conservative??

  4. JohnJohnson April 6, 2011 at 9:35 am

    What’s funny about this article is that the single party it is talking about is in fact the progressive party dating back to the military posturing of Teddy Roosevelt and continuing into today with the idea that our democratic ideas and systems are so superior that we have a responsibility to force the rest of the world into doing what we know is good for them. If you want a party that will actually change the status quo, look to the Libertarian party.

    • ANTIFA_Action April 6, 2011 at 9:44 am

      Libertarians and Anarchists have more in common with each other than either do with the corporate politicians of the Dem/GOP regime. Perhaps if we didn’t let them stand between, dividing, we may be able to work out some real solutions that work for people, and not Big Business, Wall Street and the finance sector.

  5. Scott H April 6, 2011 at 9:37 am

    I couldn’t disagree with you more on the direction we need to take …
    BUT I couldn’t agree with you more about the phony choices we are offered under this ‘system.’ Those in power use the ‘right’ to pass bills such as the patriot act, which rob us of our liberties. Those in power use the ‘left’ to create monstrous bureaucracies which inevitably become stooges of the large corporations they are intended to regulate.

  6. George April 6, 2011 at 9:53 am

    The right says the same thing about the left.. What the government likes to do is keep people in the poor hole by keeping them on the dole. Both sides of the aisle have been attacking the middle class and the poor forever. They spend and spend and spend and nothing ever changes except the ones at the top get richer and richer. All the while the people are clueless that the Federal Reserve is funding the whole mess. It just recently came out that they release some 25000 documents showing who got bailed out from the financial collapse and that THEY stand to make TRILLIONS off of it. JP Morgan benefited the most. That stands to reason since they help create the Federal Reserve in the first place. The only losers here are all levels of taxpayers with the poor getting hit the hardest.. The hidden tax that hits all of us is inflation which is created by the Federal Reserve. Why isn’t anyone picketing them? They need picketed more than anybody. If you want to find out about how the Fed works and gets its money back, read the book “The Creature from Jekyll Island: A Second Look at the Federal Reserve”. That should give you a eureka moment..

  7. Chris April 6, 2011 at 10:07 am

    What you are describing is the difference between Patriotism and Nationalism. Unfortunately, Nationalism has come to dominate our politics to such a degree its frightening.

  8. Duglarri April 6, 2011 at 11:41 am

    Absolutely- but what is worth discussing more than the fact of the one-party state is how it’s maintained. There’s corporate media, gerrymandering, and the mass of rules that prevent third parties; but more than any of these is the incredible uncontrolled acceleration in campaign spending that’s turned your elections into the exclusive domain of the very rich.

    A billion dollars for a Presidential campaign? That should be a headline, and the headline should include the word disaster. And scandal.

    No wonder Democrats and Republicans think alike: they’re all from the same class. No one but the staggeringly, unthinkably rich need apply. Went to the same schools. Obama? Honorary member. Went to those schools and was granted membership of that class. Read the same books. Promote each others’ children. $100 million price tag to become a Senator? No wonder you have a shambles.

    Reform campaign finance or give up democracy- that’s all there is to it.

  9. rougy April 6, 2011 at 1:00 pm

    Well said, and so true.

    As sad as it is, it’s good to know that somebody out there sees it like I do.

  10. james April 6, 2011 at 3:16 pm

    There will be no change. The latifundia has won all the power it needs to enslave everyone. What is coming will make all previous systems of domination seem like child’s play. The populations of all countries are brainwashed with all manner of distractions aimed at diverting attention from the truth that those who are wielding power will never let go of it.
    There is only one alternative. The question is, who will be the first to step up to the firing line and let their death be the inspiration for change?

  11. Wit's End April 7, 2011 at 2:11 pm

    I think Dick Cheney pulled Obama aside during the transition and told him he had better toe the line if he didn’t want to end up like JFK.

  12. gregor April 9, 2011 at 12:08 am

    For me, the title of this piece says it all and I totally agree. Sadly, I see no way to defeat the “vampire” aspects of today’s economic/political system without destroying the hosts. Only two possible futures appear to be facing my children; Either a second very bloody civil war, or a total unmitigated self destruction of our country. Hopefully they will survive the collapse. Hopefully they will learn something to avoid repeating the same bad movie.

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