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The New American Union

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Benito Mussolini once said: “Fascism should rightly be called Corporatism, as it is the merger of corporate and government power.”

As a child I was taught against Communism, Socialism, and Fascism. These were horrendous words, almost dirty. We were taught against Adolf Hitler, Joseph Stalin, and Benito Mussolini. America was about freedom and the U.S. Constitution that protected it. We were capitalists. We were a democracy. We were honest and didn’t propagandize as did the Communists.

At eight years old, while sitting under my desk during a “Red Attack” drill, I began to question our honesty and our use of propaganda. I sat under a wooden desk to protect myself from a nuclear bomb. That made just as much sense as hiding under a tarp during a tornado. It was then, sitting under that desk, I knew our government was trying to use fear to control our beliefs.

Every election year the conservatives proclaim their beliefs and use God as their resource. They preach against moral decline. Abortion, gay rights, and the new one, birth control, become the tools used to suck in the religious believers. Clearly, they believe, with the high moral code of the conservative base, the liberals are casting the nation to Hell. The message becomes: “A vote for a Republican is a vote for God.” Unfortunately, the voters don’t see the hidden agenda.

The bills that are being pushed by the conservative base are anti American, anti Constitution, anti workers rights, anti poor and anti elderly. They want to cut public aid to the poor and tax the elderly. They want to gut Social Security, on the premise that it’s a drag on our economy. Would it be an issue if we didn’t rob Social Security of its $4.6 trillion surpluses? If we rid ourselves of Social Security do the conservatives believe it’s a way of alleviating the debt owed? If we rid ourselves of workers’ rights will America be a better place? We can get rid of the better paying jobs, health insurance, OSHA, and have lots of low paying jobs. Who does that benefit? I believe it would only help big business flourish without any limits. There is a large union forming and it isn’t between the working people and their employers.

The conservative push for corporate America resonates the words of Benito Mussolini. Every bill they sign is pro corporation while they sing songs of privatization. Is it less government involvement, as the Republican Party used to represent, or is it the union of state and corporate America? Are we heading toward Fascism? The threat appears real by the actions taken.

I will not crawl under a wooden desk to hide from the destruction of our officials. Not this time. I didn’t believe it as a child and I’m too old to believe it now. Benito wasn’t joking. There is a new union forming…open your eyes!

Wake Up America!

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About Pam Messingham

  • Clav

    That’s interesting, Glenn. Most of mine (on- and offline) are libruls.

    And I agree we likely would get along fine…

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Actually, I think Clav and I would get along just fine, since he’s a good egg and most of my friends are conservative anyway.

  • ST “Y’all” Hussein M

    Welcome top lob up on the doorstep Glenn.

    Be an interesting time with you and Cav here at the same time 🙂

    Ah, but you’d soon learn why we don’t too much mind to politics. Life just rolls along.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Stan, that’s the best advertisement I’ve ever heard for Australia. Someday….

  • STM

    That’d be good, but you won’t get the heat. Mind you, in your case that might be a welcome relief.

  • Clav

    Cheers Mate! Just checked the fares — gotta sell a couple more boats — how you looking for later in the year (say early August)?

  • STM


    I did move … to SA. Drove two days across three states and a fair chunk of outback Australia to get here, while the girls flew for two hours and whinged about it because the otherwise luxurious motel room they stayed at in Sydney on their last night there was a bit smaller than they’d have liked. Sydney princesses.

    This is a good city. It’s much, much smaller than Sydney – only 1.2 million here – but it doesn’t lack for anything and is quite sophisticated. There’s wine country all around, like a giant Napa Valley, and the coastline is fantastic. Beautiful old restored neighbourhoods, too, with lots of parks and trees. My wife is at the beach with the dogs every afternoon, and our place is right on the coast on a hill in a nice, newer neighbourhood and has views over Gulf St Vincent. I have a hammock on the back deck that affords beaut sunset views over the sea. It’s really hot in summer though as the prevailing wind is from the north and blows down straight off the desert. It’s way less humid than Sydney, but then it’s not on the Pacific Coast, which has its own advantages. Winters are cool – winds often blow onshore off the Southern Ocean, and there’s nothing between here and Antarctica.

    The place has great restaurants, has lots of things to do and is rather beautiful, and way less congested although the Adelaide plain is spread out and very urbanised and nice to see at night as you drive down from the hills. My house is about the same distance from town as I was in Sydney but it takes 35 minutes on a bad day instead of 35 – or two hours on a wet, rush-hour weekday morning.

    We have settled into our new jobs. Earning about the same, but spending power is up. No harbour bridge or tunnel tolls or motorway fees etc being siphoned from your bank account by the state government every two weeks for a start. There are no tollways here and rail travel is cheap – I’m five minutes’ walk from the station for the train into town. It winds around the coastal cliff tops – pretty damn nice on your way to work!

    Still very homesick though. Sydney IMO is the most beautiful and exciting city on the planet, so it’s a hard place to leave. However, I had to return recently to pick up my wife’s car from the repairer and I got stuck for two hours in traffic and realised why I’d decided to leave.

    It’s all good though. Hope you get down here at some point. You can have a week in Sydney and I’ll come up there, and then you can chill out down here for a week.

    Don’t die wondering.

    Sorry for using up your thread for personal chitchat, Pam, but I haven’t caught up with Clav for a while.

    Cheers guys

  • Clav

    Oh, and Igor…

    I said there were no level-headed americans. I did not say they’re all stupid (although by their actions/lifestyles one is led to conclude much of the underclass is).

  • Clav

    Hi Stan,

    I still think the most level-headed Anglophones in the world continue to be you Aussies.

    I’m not sure how level-headed Mexicans are these days, but the richest man in the world is now a mexicano, so at least he must boast some level-headedness.

    Did you move, Stan? Where to?

  • Clav

    how could you think to influence them?

    I do not now, nor have I ever wanted, to do so.

  • STM

    Clav … there must be a few level-headed Mexicans though?

  • Igor

    #26-Clav: in that case it’s a wonder that you bother to show up here, since presumably these Americans are below your contempt, how could you think to influence them? They are incapable of understanding your message.

  • Clav

    There are no “level-headed americans…

  • Igor

    The radical right is trying to turn down the vote by passing various voter diminishment laws in the states. Big vote turnouts are inimical to rightist interests.

  • STM

    Pam: It always makes me laugh when hardcore right-wing Americans bang on about rights whilst doing their hardest to rob Americans of a lot of their rights.

    There’s a difference between having some conservative political viewpoints – I might have plenty of those too – and lurching away from the centre to too far to the right, to that place where people only pay lip service to rights (if it suits their agenda).

    Americans occupying that very large mainstream area of middle ground on the political spectrum need to band together to make sure that doesn’t happen.

    Ignoring the bullsh.t and turning up to vote’s a good start … one can only hope.

  • Yes, and the people don’t even see it coming. They still buy into the “for your own good” theory. The law makers hide behind the instilled “terrorist fear.” The laws don’t do anything to the terrorists. The laws just rape us of our Constitutional Rights! I wish the majority would open their eyes, but they are too comfortable where they are. It’s very sad….very sad.

  • With the benefit of hindsight it really does seem like there has been a concerted and co-ordinated attempt since at least the 1980s to roll back the social emancipation and increased freedom that emerged in the USA and other Western countries after the 2nd World War.

    That misguided effort has turned into something dangerous and threatening to all of us since 9/11.

    It is a bitter irony that a vocal but organised minority is trying – and so far succeeding – to turn the land of the brave, home of the free, into one of the most repressive Western democracies we have ever seen.

  • I don’t know, STM, the signing of the NDAA law really baffled me. What a right stripping, anti constitutional, freedom inhibiting law…and it was signed in. They are lurching…hard core! I’m glad you remember hiding under the desk, too. Not many remember. It’s getting to the point that the level headed Americans aren’t the ones running the country and the ones that run the country don’t like the level headed. It’s a double edged sword.

  • STM

    Yes, I did nuclear drills too, in early primary school in the early 1960s. It was always a good opportunity for us kids to piss about under the desks and have a good giggle. Our parents were quite serious about it though; in our family my mother especially, as the Nazis had bombed the shit out of her street more than once during the early years of the war when she was a kid (and which she remembered vividly), because it was not far from the big Vickers aircraft factory outside London.

    They only got some respite later in the war when the aircraft being made at Vickers were giving the Nazi pr.cks a nice towel-up as the RAF returned the favour and bombed the living sh.t out of Germany. Sow the wind, reap the whirlwind.

    What? Did they think they were going to do it to everyone else and no one would do it back to them. Another delusion of those believing they were the aryan “master race” while the rest of us were just poor, jew-ridden democracies with nothing better to believe in than the freedom and dignity of all men and women.

    Very cynical, too; prior to the attack on Russia in 1941, the Nazis were allied to the Soviets.

    On reflection regarding the nuke drills, what would getting under a flimsy wooden school desk have achieved with a mega-megatonne Russki or Red Chinese bomb going off a few kilometres away?

    Not much, I’d think, but I suppose they had to give everyone the idea that were at least making an effort to keep us kids safe.

    Anyway, what the f.ck would Warren about fascism (which, as Glenn points out, was actually Italian, Spanish and Portuguese and was extreme right only to the point of putting profits at the top of the state’s agenda)?? Naziism was something else again. It had a couple of nastier little components stitched in among its troubling philosophies just for good measure.

    You know, like genocide.

    America’s nothing like any of those places, but if you don’t watch out, it could be. I have enough faith in ordinary level-headed Americans, though, to believe that will never be the case.

    That is, those Americans whose brains aren’t clouded by the recent lurch in the US to the right.

  • Igor

    #18-Pam: most places in time and geography that’s called despotism.

  • Michigan is very scary right now! Igor, yes it’s called the two thirds rule for immediate effect…but nobody count…scary!

  • Igor

    Michigan is an interesting example of runaway Radical Rightism. Michigan has a law that when a new law is passed that 90 days elapse before it’s effective, but then they have another law that the wait can be bypassed if a 2/3 majority votes for “immediate effect”. Apparently, the republican speaker gavels thru all the new laws that the reps want on just a voice vote for “immediate effect”.

    I’ve seen videos of the legislature passing one after another rightist law by this method without pause.

  • Funny Glenn, I just wrote a blog on my cite that is linked to a few local newspapers about the Michigan Govenor. It’s written quite differently. I read what you wrote and had to laugh. Thanks! Enough said.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    And Warren –

    Here’s an example of how to include rhetoric that DOES have facts to back it up. You won’t like what it says, but unlike your link in comment #12, the author DOES rely on facts to back up his rhetoric.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Ah – Warren posted a reply just as I posted one!

    Um, Warren –

    For all of us conservatives out here, can you please elaborate on the hidden agenda? Or is “Fascism” the hidden agenda?

    Warren, “Fascism” was never the conservatives’ “hidden agenda”…it’s just that y’all are so up in the aire about upholding the profit motive and protecting Big Business, and y’all simply don’t realize that such a political model has been tried before by a guy named Mussolini. It’s not maliciousness on the part of conservatives – it’s simple ignorance.

    And looking at the last paragraph in your reply:

    You continue, “We can get rid of the better paying jobs, health insurance, OSHA, and have lots of low paying jobs. Who does that benefit?” You may find this source interesting, – or not.

    That’s a wonderful example of why you are the way you are, Warren, because there’s NOT ONE SHRED of real evidence or reliable statistics or historical fact in that article – it’s one hundred percent rhetoric. No facts, no real MEAT…just rhetoric. But you apparently think that article’s sensible and hard-hitting enough to prove your point.

    Rhetoric without facts to back it up is empty rhetoric…but if your use of that link is any indication, empty rhetoric is good enough for Warren World.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Gee – wonder where the BC conservatives are on this article?

  • Pam, you say, “The message becomes: “A vote for a Republican is a vote for God.” Unfortunately, the voters don’t see the hidden agenda.” For all of us conservatives out here, can you please elaborate on the hidden agenda? Or is “Fascism” the hidden agenda?

    You continue, “The bills that are being pushed by the conservative base are anti American, anti Constitution, anti workers rights, ….” Elaboration, please. Or is that just your opinion?

    You continue, “They want to gut Social Security,….” You may find this source interesting, particularly this quote that appears about 3/4th of the way down in the source: No change in Social Security spending, but a requirement that the President and House and Senate leadership submit plans to assure the program’s sustainability

    You continue, “We can get rid of the better paying jobs, health insurance, OSHA, and have lots of low paying jobs. Who does that benefit?” You may find this source interesting, – or not.

  • Watching the missles turn…I’ve seen that, as well, and it is “scary” to a point. You are certainly aware of their power when you see it. Free countries shouldn’t teach against any form of government…it should be your right to choose…right? I would assume so. But in reality who is free? In Michigan, the laws that are being passed show a huge merger of State/Corporate. The governor just signed a bill to make it illegal for lab assistants to form a union. He has taken 1.8 billion from our budget to give big corporatations a tax break and he replaced it with a tax on the retirement checks of the elderly and, get this, education. Yeah, it’s getting pretty bad. And Hey…thanks for the compliments!

  • Back to Pam’s article, though…

    I’ve always had a healthy suspicion of large corporations. I was first introduced to the threat (in 1974?) when Ford was exposed for their chilling decision that it would be cheaper to settle wrongful death claims than to fix a literally fatal flaw in the Pinto. Ralph Nader gets his props for that one.

    Fundamentally, I don’t see corporations and the government as “in bed together” so much as I see them in a “grudging co-dependance.” However, it is pretty friggin’ alarming when the entire constituency of the Republican Party recognizes corporations as people.

    Now if you ask me who do I trust more with something such as health care? I still trust the government more for two reasons: First is that they don’t have a profit motive. (I guess that means I would rather die from incompetence rather than greed). Second, higher accountability and transparency.

    With all of that in mind, I can’t remember if it was Glenn or Dr. D who goes for the Goldilocks rule for government. Not too big and not too small. This describes me pretty well and I have a similar sentiment for corporations… I don’t particularly trust them but neither do I uniformly demonize them. (Financial industries exempt – demonize away.)

    “Fascism should rightly be called Corporatism, as it is the merger of corporate and government power.” Never heard that before. Good one!

  • If there is only one movie to watch about the cold war era, it would be “Dr Strangelove.”

  • Dr D,

    I grew up in Milwaukee, WI which was an ‘A’ list nuclear target. (Come to think of it, the only A list I’ve ever been on). When I was in grade school during the sixties, I remember liking to watch the defensive missiles swiveling on their mounts from my classroom window.

    I went from kindergarten through high school with the full understanding that I could be vaporized at any particular moment.

  • My formal education, which took place in the southern suburbs of London, England, lasted from 1971 to 1984. I don’t recall doing a single nuclear attack drill. Our entire awareness on the subject was a screening of the 1960s docudrama The War Game, which our headmaster grumpily informed us beforehand was “a piece of left-wing propaganda”.

    I think by that stage, the local education authority had come to the conclusion that there was absolutely no point: we were less than ten miles from central London and the city was known to be targeted by at least ten nukes, possibly many more. We would have been, for a millisecond or two at least, toast.

    One of the high schools I attended was next to a fire station, and the brigade used to occasionally test the early warning siren the building was equipped with – without prior warning, which used to scare the willies out of everybody.

  • Igor

    Good article.

    Indeed, the Radical Right cares more for their abstraction of America than they do for the American people.

  • It was a reference to your “Red Attack” drill. Millions were taught to “Duck and Cover” in the event of a nuclear attack.

    I was also alluding to a couple of other article’s comment threads where the exchanges got spirited but, like nuclear war, are inevitably a lose-lose exchange.

  • Pam Messingham

    Glenn: Thanks. No, people don’t see it. They are getting sucked in with the “free ride” motto of the conservatives.
    Friv: I don’t understand the duck and cover statement…explain. Thanks!

  • Oops, I so busy trying to be clever that I forgot to say the obvious:

    Nice article.

  • Hi Pam,

    I’ve come to believe that the conservative base may, indeed, love America more than the rest of us. It’s only the people in it that they hate.

    I’m also a new BC writer but I learned pretty quickly that those duck and cover skills may come in handy in the comments.


  • Glenn Contrarian

    Pam –

    Great article – and a lot of people don’t realize that the real fascists were not the Germans under Hitler, but the Italians under Mussolini. And the conservatives and Republicans really don’t comprehend how close their bringing us to the model of fascist Italy.