Posted 5 years ago on Nov. 2, 2012, 1:33 a.m. EST by WSmith
from Cornelius, OR
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Chris Hedges is Voting Green, But I’m Voting For Obama – Here’s Why
Joe Biden debate quote:
Normal people (non-Republicans) know that despite the incessant right wing propaganda labeling the President with the charge of “socialist,” Barack Obama is far from even being a liberal. But I’m voting for him on Election Day. Here’s why.
Why I’m Voting For President Obama
First, a little background on the letter you’re about to read: People who read this site know I’m a friend and fan of kick-ass radio host Mike Malloy (you’re not a Malloy podcast subscriber? What are you waiting for?) A week before the Presidential election, Mike read Chris Hedges’ Column titled, Why I’m Voting Green on his show… and I felt I had to respond. Mike then read my response on the Thursday, October 31st “Mike Malloy Show.” I received a few emails and requests on the RDT Facebook page for a copy of the email… so here it is:
The devastation from Hurricane Sandy is astounding but I’m one of the few, fortunate, people in NYC. Though last night was pretty hair raising, I’m on high ground in Queens and never lost power…. so this morning, I was able to listen to the podcast from last night.
I wanted to respond to the Chris Hedges piece you read on the air, especially after I had just shared with you that I spent the last couple of days phone-banking at Obama headquarters – something I said I wouldn’t do – until the very real threat of a Romney presidency made me change my mind.
I agree with Hedges. We live in a nation where the “corporate state has successfully waged a campaign of fear to disempower voters and citizens.” But I don’t see how voting for Obama and confronting “the structures of corporate power” are mutually exclusive.
Obama isn’t the root of all evil – he’s a product of it. The root evil coursing through our body politic is MONEY.
I plan on continuing to fight that evil – but I also have to live in this country in the here and now.
Hedges is right. Real “change” always comes via political movements outside the power structure. History and reality show us that.
This is why I’m involved with progressive movements (such as Occupy) and will continue to lend my energy to similar vital causes. I will continue to fight from the outside. I will do these things as I vote for Obama without an ounce of guilt.
You see, I’m a member of the working class. I have to LIVE – on the ground – in this corrupt, corporate, system… and I’m not willing to watch the baby-steps of progress be undone “on day one” by a Republican president. Given the options, I will do what little I can to stop it.
(Whether the Republicans steal it will be revealed on Election Day – that’s another conversation altogether). But it seems Hedges thinks we can’t try to maintain the little progress we’ve gained AND build a political movement as a counterweight to corporate power at the same time.
He might be right if we all simply choose to vote and go home, but voting is just the least we can do. Activists know that the real work takes place every day – not just Election Day. We just don’t vote and go home. Our job is to scream and yell to educate and wake up the people who do think their work is done.
I do understand Hedges’ vote, given his lawsuit against the Administration’s National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA). Trust me. I appreciate his advocacy to protect the Constitution and was happy to hear that the lawsuit was successful. I’m well aware that his victory was a victory on behalf of all citizens. But he dismisses progress that doesn’t affect him personally too easily. It must be easy for Hedges, as a straight, white, male, to flippantly write, “Obama, whatever his proclivity on social issues, has provided ample evidence that he will not alter his servitude to the corporate state.”
“Whatever his proclivity on social issues?”
Gee. Once again women and the lgbt community get thrown under the bus. What a surprise.
Hedges doesn’t know what it’s like to be a gay person wearing the uniform of this country during “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.” I do.
He doesn’t know what it’s like to be a woman forced to continuously bear the assault of daily misogynist Republican attacks on female autonomy. I do.
I also know about student loans… what it’s like to live without health insurance… and could only imagine what would have happened to my family if we didn’t have Medicare to help pay for my father’s Alzheimer’s care.
Which is why in between having to work for a living, I will be there any time we need to shine a light on the crimes of the military industrial complex … and… rather than getting a good night’s sleep or vegging out in front of the TV… after working all day and pursuing my comedy career at night… I spend my limited free time writing and creating graphics for RepublicanDirtyTricks.com - trying to educate my fellow Americans about what’s happened to their country and how we must band together to reclaim it for the people.
But, it seems pretty naive to me, on one hand, for Hedges to lament that our fellow citizens are propagandized victims of the corporate state and, on the other hand, demand these same propagandized dupes rise up and throw off the shackles they don’t even realize are restraining them.
That seems just as unrealistic as that “Occupy Vision” which called for “no cops,” “a non hierarchical society” and “the end of the monetary system.” Sorry. That’s not going to happen today. Let’s work to get money out of politics first… and let’s try as hard as we can to not lose the slim gains we’ve made by voting for a candidate who, although a product of the corrupt system, won’t completely slit our throats. Trust me. If Jill Stein had a realistic shot, I would be all in. But I operate in the Reality-Based Community.
Frankly, as you read the Hedges article on the air, I also kept thinking of your words: “unless you’re a member of a targeted group, Fascism isn’t so bad.”
You see, I do live in this nation as a member of a targeted group.
It must take “courage” for Chris Hedges, as straight, white male, to adamantly dismiss Obama’s “proclivity on social issues” and try to overthrow corporatism in one election via one Quixotic protest vote.
After all, when Hedges was a member of a targeted group – journalists – he went to court to fight it. Sadly, he seems so dismissive of the social gains we’ve made and so condescending towards our desire to maintain them. I suppose he’s comforted by the fact he doesn’t have to worry about rising incidences of violence against the lgbt community when we once again have a President who pushes Constitutional amendments and rallies his mob around the hatred for gays.
I also find it ridiculous for Hedges to skewer subservience to the corporate state as he simultaneously dismisses the importance of the Supreme Court that armed it with “Citizen’s United.”
Yes. Obama is a corporatist. Yes. Yes. Yes.
Sorry Mr. Hedges is so disappointed. Me too.
But the New Gilded Age didn’t happen overnight and it isn’t going away overnight either. So unless Mr. Hedges is advocating bloody revolution to overthrow this corporate oppression, his feckless “protest vote” seems more like political equivalent of “the mouse that roared.”
You know me, Mike. I hope to live to see the day where we truly have a government and society that works for all. I WILL CONTINUE to push my country from the outside through political movements and I will spend the rest of my life working to make the dream of an economically vibrant and politically free middle class come to fruition… In the meantime, I will fight to maintain our gains. I’m still voting for Obama…. And will STILL meet you at the barricades.
Your Friend, Tara
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The readers of RepublicanDirtyTricks.com know that despite the name, when warranted, RDT is just as critical of Democrats, has often railed against President Obama and will continue to do so after he is (hopefully) re-elected. The goal of this site is to shine a light on the class war against working people in all its forms – especially when it comes from the party that has traditionally positioned itself as the advocate of the working class. True activists know that real political change comes from outside the system. Remember to vote – but also remember to stay active! The future economic-vibrancy and freedom of the middle class depends on it!
I hope you Unicorn Chasers and Both-Samers ~ the ones not working for Cons to suppress the Vote ~ read this carefully.
If we turn out, we win. If we don't turn out, the 1% wins. VOTE!!!