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Forum Post: Move To Amend - David Cobb, Part 2: American Creation Myth

Posted 7 years ago on March 28, 2012, 1:17 p.m. EST by pewestlake (947) from Brooklyn, NY
This content is user submitted and not an official statement

Another stop on David Cobb's barnstorming tour across the country to educate, inspire and spread the word about passing a Constitutional Amendment to overturn Citizens United v. the Federal Elections Commission and all the case law leading up to that decision. Abolish corporate personhood. Abolish money as speech. Reaffirm Congress' power to regulate elections.

Part 2: The American Creation Myth




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[-] 2 points by Odin (583) 7 years ago

I like Mr. cobb's worldly and positive point view, and his implying that everyone, no matter where they are from want the same things in life that we do.....a chance for a better life for themselves and their children. It's not that they are jealous of our freedoms, they just simply don't like that we are an impediment to having those same freedoms. After you have slept in the same home and/or broken bread with people from different countries and cultures in the world, it is difficult to view them in any other way than a human way.

Unfortunately, patriotism in this country has become synonomous with militarism, which is really our quest to dominate the world well into the 21st century. It is time that our government and their policies mirror the ideals of the majority of its people. Otherwise we will find ourselves bankrupt..both financially and morally.

Your posts are really improving pew. You can tell by having so few comments. That means people like it. :-)

[-] 2 points by pewestlake (947) from Brooklyn, NY 7 years ago

LoL! You know I aim for crickets!

I was impressed by Cobb's sincerity in person. We had a nice chat about amendment language and strategy. He's a man on a pretty good mission. One that I share.

Totally agree about the merging of patriotism and militarism. Eisenhower's "military-industrial" complex has become the "military-industrial-corporate-entertainment-culture-fear" complex. So many moving parts, there has to be an Achilles heel somewhere!

Oh, and thanks for stopping by. We now rejoin the superhighway which is already in progress... ;-)

[-] 1 points by Odin (583) 7 years ago

One of the dynamics that makes it very difficult for elected represenatatives to vote against military spending, other than all the money that pours into campaigns is military bases and defense contractors are spread throughout the country so evenly that it makes it difficult for our reps to vote against the welfare of their constituents who depend on this spending. I believe this was planned that way.

The "Achilles heel" is how we frame these issues. ie. Do you think we should shore up social security and medicare, by reducing our military spending...etc., etc.? or.....

I didn't realize that you met Mr. Cobb. That's cool.

[-] 2 points by pewestlake (947) from Brooklyn, NY 7 years ago

...or: "Shouldn't the oil and minerals companies be paying for the benefit of the American military protection their facilities receive all over the world? Or should we stop spending the money to protect oil platforms and pipelines and let them fend for themselves? Isn't this just another form of socialism interfering with the 'free market?'" Yeah, that'll work! ;-)

David and I had corresponded indirectly through another group, Abolish Corporate Personhood Now, and knew I was coming to tape and talk to him. I agreed to become an MTA affiliate but not until after we had the chat. I needed to hear his words and feel his sincerity before signing on. I still have problems with the language of his proposal but there's plenty of time to work that out and he's open to it. He even complimented me on the elegance of the language in my version. So, all in all, a good meeting.

[-] 1 points by factsrfun (8231) from Phoenix, AZ 7 years ago

I have suggested that we fund the government with a property tax, all forms of property, based on the ideal that the chief role of government is to protect what we have, through various means military being only one of which. Nice to read a thread where people might understand that, I do go for comments, but my natural skill is that of warrior, and I am a bit hardcore, I do simple bumper sticker because we have been missing it.

[-] 1 points by Odin (583) 7 years ago

That's great. As you probably know there are many people in OWS that are taking on similar projects, and that is really good to hear. For the most part, there are no big egos. I might have told you this, if so forgive me....I'm old.., but i am involved with Occupy Town Square who have pop-up events in different parks, churches, and neighborhoods in NYC about every two weeks. The last one near you, in Fort Greene Park was the first one that I missed due to a prior commitment. I felt bad about that.

Anyway I send out invitations to poly sci and economic depts at universities within a thirty mile radius of NYC. The idea is not only to have them come to the event, but to encourage them to have their own event in their own neighborhood or campus. Then on the day of the action, I do anything and everything...from cleaning up dog shit...to picking up garbage...to talking to people...to lugging tables and stuff to see that it goes off well. Did you go to the last one at FG Sunday the 25th? I heard it was a big success..

[-] 1 points by pewestlake (947) from Brooklyn, NY 7 years ago

I've only been to one event affiliated with OWS and it was the MTA thing. I support the existence of OWS but not necessarily all the policies it advances, so I'm selective with my participation. Money as speech and personhood for legal fictions are the top issues as far as I can see. Everything else we might want to accomplish depends on minimizing the corrupting influence of unfettered private wealth in our political discourse, from campaigns to everyday propaganda. When that mission intersects with OWS, I'm there.

Occupy Town Square sounds interesting. I see a facebook and twitter profile but nothing with a calendar. Got a link or do you just look for announcements?

[-] 0 points by Odin (583) 7 years ago

Yes, I am selective in my participation too, although I have taken part in several marches and demonstrations...I do pick and choose which ones, however I would never go out of my way to drive wedges within the movement, because that type of in-fighting about smaller issues is how we have been controlled for so long, and lost so much on a much bigger scale. I would not compromise my honesty either, though.

Corrupt big banks, taking the money out of politics, and the wealth disparity, were what got me here at first too, and I know that if we have those things...all things are possible. I have come to realize though that younger people want so much more....and they don't want to wait a life-time to get it. I think they fear band-aid fixes, and the populace slipping back into a coma, and things returning to how they were. That's a legitimate fear. As I have said in another comment, I have learned to look at life more through their eyes, and the eyes of my kids...oops..and my granddaughter, hence I have come to realize that we are on an "unsustainable" (yes I admit that word is new to me) course which has to be dealt with...and I am beginning to wonder if capitalism is up to the task. I never thought I would have said that either.

Occupy Town Square has not posted its next event yet, but I suspect that they will be in Central Park next week when OWS is there. The last time I had contact with them, I congratulated them when they said the event at Fort Greene was their best yet, out of the four they have had so far. Yes, they post the events on facebook, and this web-site also has started to promote them.

[-] 1 points by pewestlake (947) from Brooklyn, NY 7 years ago

I think capitalism would be just fine if we tried it. We've become so accustomed to crony capitalism that people don't realize that the free enterprise system is doing fine. It's the top-down corporatism that vacuums massive resources, monopolizes entire industries, manipulates political priorities and pits town against town, state against state and nation against nation to get the perquisites they covet.

I'll keep an eye out for the next OTS event.

[-] 5 points by Odin (583) 7 years ago

Yes, but capitalism is based on never-ending growth, needing infinite resources on a finite planet... with little regard for anything else. Even when it was working well for us...at what cost to us, to others in the world, or to the earth itself? We have been able to close our eyes to the wars....all the innocent people that were maimed or killed with the most sophisticated, horrific, lethal weapons... cluster bombs, bombs made with depleted uranium, but since we don't have to see the effects on people of these weapons, it's like they don't exist, or it never happened; our support of brutal dictators, and the fear their people had to live under on a daily basis; and finally the degadation of the enviroment which causes health problems to so many people., and is threatening life itself.

When does all this come to an end? Will it ever? We seem to have been able to compartmentalize our values, our morals. The injustices that we have perpetrated in the world are being brought to light more and more because of social media, and even mainstream media like Aljazeera.... and these suppressed people now know what they are missing out on. They have awoken, like us, but to a much bigger degree. So now we are embarked on a war on terror... giving little or no thought as to why they are so angry at us. It is really just blow-back for all the terrible injustices that we have wreaked on different countries in the world...which we choose to ignore by substituting a feigned different reason for it. ie, "They are jealous of our freedoms," as President George Bush so ignorantly declared.

We fear getting arrested here for standing up to a corrupt system. They feel it is worth risking their lives, rather than to live like they have any longer. We cannot deny our culpability in their plight. They will not stand for this any longer, and as a fellow human being...I have empathy for them.

I remember talking to a friend who lived in a repressive regime. It was while I was in Guantanamo Bay in 1994-1995 during the Haitian and Cuban refugee crisis. For much of the time there, we were alongside of a Ukranian cruise ship that was being used as a hotel for the military, and all the different government agencies that were down there supporting the operation. Unbelievably to me at the time...the ship's crew was mostly Russian, in GITMO! Anyway one night, after having been there for several months, one of the ship's engineers, Igor from Odessa who I had befriended opened up...and yes it was over a bottle of vodka... to me on what life was like in the Ukraine. He was literaly in tears telling me how you could not trust anyone...including family even! Can you imagine that? That is only one facet of what it is like to live under that type of subjugation.....and we have and still support brutal dictators who force their people to live under similar and worse circumstances.

At no other time in our lives have people joined together in the world for a common social cause like they have now against a corrupt system..neoliberal economics. We should not waste this opportunity to settle for something less, if something much better is possible. Let's get it as right as possible. This may be the last chance we have.

I feel that our country has an important role to play in the world, but the role of holding onto and/or expanding Empire is not one of them. As I have said before, it is bankrupting us both financially, and morally, and our victims will no longer put up with it. People want a different world, and our leaders seem oblivious to that fact. We need new solutions. We need to take a new path, and we need new blood, and I just don't think that we should discount a different system, just because we have never lived under anything else except capitalism. That's all.

[-] 5 points by pewestlake (947) from Brooklyn, NY 7 years ago

I agree with absolutely everything you say (three cheers!) with one exception: the use of the word "capitalism" as a catchall. I think "free enterprise" has been conflated with the "free market" on purpose to create the impression that "capitalism" is inextricable from "corporatism" (which is ultimately just another form of fascism). I think we all agree that mom-and-pop shops are just fine. Even a large company that serves a defined public good, like a university system or a community hospital, is mostly a good thing.

The first corporations on Earth were Roman and used to build the aqueduct system, among other public works. Properly controlled by "we the people," the free enterprise system, coupled with socialism (for universities, police, sewers, etc) is a fantastic combination of market control and free will. I don't know if Alexander Graham Bell would have invented the telephone any faster or slower under the auspices of a more socialist system, but I do believe the free enterprise system is the most likely to create variety that the people can then choose from for larger systems, as needed.

I honestly think we've never seen the free enterprise system properly at work. Back before rampant corporatism, the workplace was dominated by racism, sexism and class exploitation (did I mention child labor?). As those impediments were slowly beaten back (though far from completely) the corporate Wall Street model emerged and subsumed the dynamic Main Street model. So even as we overcame one set of evils, more were introduced. I don't believe in the "free market." But I do believe in well-regulated free enterprise. It's the best way I know of to allow ordinary people to do extraordinary things without having to ask permission. I think that's worth hanging onto.

[-] 2 points by Odin (583) 7 years ago

From the time we entered the world stage which is at least from the early 1900s.... starting with Teddy Roosevelt's, "speak softly and carry a big stick," gunboat diplomacy, and other Machiavellian policies which supported the old Colonialism, to the New World of neoliberalism... countries that practiced capitalism have been acting in an amoral way. I know that no political or economic system is perfect, but I just think that we should explore the possibilites. In any event, first we have to get where you and I both want to go...big monied interests of politics...better eviromental policies...doing away with corporatism ...repealing the Financial Modernization Act..etc. When we get to that 'port'...you might want to get off the 'boat.' Six months ago, I probably would have wanted to disembark too...but I'm not so sure now.

[-] 2 points by pewestlake (947) from Brooklyn, NY 7 years ago

I hear that and I agree. One step at a time. In the long run, I'm open to most possibilities. I draw the line at libertarianism. ;-)

[-] 5 points by shadz66 (19985) 7 years ago

Odin : Your excellent and sincerely heartfelt comment deserves to be a 'forum-post' really.

Your compassionate, insightful and sensitive comment is actually representative of a huge swathe of 'Real American Opinion' - beyond the drivel of the all pervasive 'Lame Stream Media' in The U$A.

Shine on bro' and may good counsel such as yours guide us all - wherever we are because we need a 'New World' : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FE4rU-vnaKY - if enough wish it, want it and work for it - It WILL Come :-)

dum spiro, spero ...

[-] 1 points by Odin (583) 7 years ago

Thanks shadz. I wrote that in the early morning hours while I was winding down after returning from the city where I marched over the Brooklyn Bridge with my fellow radicals. I had thought of making it a post before your comment, and with your encouragement, I will. Yes, it was from the heart. I enjoyed those tunes especially the second one.

[-] 2 points by shadz66 (19985) 7 years ago

'O' : Perhaps a better tune for the circumstances we are in, is : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ErQHc9N2O08 !!!

per ardua ad astra ...

[-] 1 points by factsrfun (8231) from Phoenix, AZ 7 years ago

I too have a problem with the use of “capitalism” in that maybe you attribute too much to it, I feel it is a tool like any other neither good nor bad, I feel we run into trouble when people view ‘free enterprise” or “capitalism” as if It had a Master plan, like God or something, I think the underlying suggestion of these people is that “free enterprise” or “capitalism” is God’s way of running the world, since according to them it’s under no man’s control.

The problems you outline are real, but some of those are in our nature and that we address one by one, wanting more is not a new thing.

[-] 1 points by Odin (583) 7 years ago

Yes pewestlake made the distinction between capitalism and crony capitalism, or free enterprise and free trade. At the very least, we have to get back to the formers. Whatever track we are on now,it's twisted. Wanting more especially from the corrupt path we are on now is how progress is made. Anyway, Imade the one comment I made here into a post

[-] 1 points by factsrfun (8231) from Phoenix, AZ 7 years ago

it is a good one, thanks, I'll look for it

[-] 1 points by factsrfun (8231) from Phoenix, AZ 7 years ago

Thanks for putting this up, but always remember, no Bush no SuperPacs, we can't let another Nader happen.