06 June 2012

Democracy must be saved

Yesterday, Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker survived a recall election which had been prompted by his war on workers and other extreme right-wing agenda items. And this unfortunate result can only encourage and embolden other right-wing governors and state legislatures to follow suit. Indeed, many already are.

According to the New York Times, the Walker campaign was backed by the billionaire Koch brothers and other big-ticket donors to a tune of $45.6 million, compared to $17.9 spent by his Democratic rival, Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett.

Money talks. And money wins elections. Money buys the propaganda that leads ordinary citizens to vote against their own best interests.

When that happens, we no longer have a true democracy. Instead, it is a plutocracy. It is fascism in the purest sense of the word. And human rights - and basic decency and fairness - take a back seat to corporate profits and greed.

I think this is what Thomas Jefferson feared when he said: "I hope we shall crush ... in its birth the aristocracy of our moneyed corporations, which dare already to challenge our government to a trial of strength and bid defiance to the laws of our country."

Jefferson is surely spinning in his grave.

We the living must keep up the fight to defend the true democracy that he envisioned more than two centuries ago.

We must not let yesterday's disappointment discourage us. We should let it inspire us to work harder than ever to get this country back on track.

The alternative is unthinkable. So giving up is not an option.

On to November!

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