October, 2000, Volume 8 Nr. 2,
by Jozef Hand-BoniakowskiThe primary elections are over in my home state of Vermont. They took place during the first week of September. Vermont produced few major surprises. It is, after all, the "Green" Mountain State. Nationally, however, with two months to go before the general and presidential elections, there is plenty of time left for a hold - on - to - the - seat - of - your pants alteration of world and/or national events to fit the politics of greedy henchmen from the two korporate parties. Imagine. These guys are vying for the top position in the world's most powerful executive suite with a glass ceiling for women (and anyone who's not a tall white guy) - still. Yes, still. And, as the current occupant has so expertly proven, one can look up at the glass ceiling, at will, while looking down at interns who look up at Will.
After 224 years of "democracy", the U.S., according to the political and historic record, has yet to move beyond the good old pa t- 'em - in - the - ass white male presidential club. I suppose that we should be grateful, this election cycle, for having the Democratic party take the pragmatic vision of choosing Joe Lieberman, a Jewish senator, and now, a potential future presidential candidate, as an altruistic bold step toward the unwaspification of the electoral process. Ah, progress.
Why waste our time with Joe, when there is Ralph Nader. Ralph has a Semitic background, also comes from Connecticut, has impeccable credentials, untarnished reputation and a lifetime of superhero consumer advocacy? Ralph hasn't executed anyone nor did he invent the Internet, nor did he inhale nor snort anything. But, I digress, writing this piece at the end of Septober, when scripted and staged media events of this fall unfold into an Octember of "what nexts." Our brains are about to be scrambled again, whites of insignificance blended with the yellow yoke of just enough cholesterolic fear (with a touch of rage) to whip up an appetite for yet another safe course of action - dining on more of the same, voting for as Michael Moore puts it, "The evil of two lessers." Bon appetite.
In Vermont, independent and self-professed "socialist" congressperson Bernard Sanders is being challenged by transgendered conservative Republican, Karen Kerin. In a state where the Republican party claims, "I believe in equal rights, equal justice and equal opportunity for all, regardless of race, creed, age, sex or national origin", the phrase "sexual preference" is conveniently left out - unless, of course, one interprets the word "sex" to be an action verb instead of a noun. The anti-Civil Union folk are mostly republicans, and, many are obsessed with sex, not their own of course, rather that of others. The perennial Liberty Union candidate, Peter Diamondstone is again running for congress as well...also as, a Democrat, no less. Will we see Peter, the legitimate candidate of the Vermont Democratic Party included in the congressional debates? Will there be any? No surprises here. Few Vermonters are even surprised that Bernie, the progressive iconoclast of Vermont's political landscape, along with Pete Clavelle, the progressive mayor of the State's largest city, have not endorsed Progressive Party gubernatorial candidate, Anthony Pollina, even at this late date. Ah, the politics of House committee chairmanship and playing party politics as non-party person. Pity the possibilty.Regardless of how much you fear a particular candidate that one doesn't want to get elected, Bernie himself would have been never been elected, if his tireless supporters (of which Anthony Pollina is one) had followed this line of thinking. As Bernie says, isn't it no wonder that so many Americans are disenfranchised from the electoral process that they no longer bother to vote. He's right. I know how they feel. Anthony deserves better.
On the national level, however, there is plenty of time...for real surprises. In a tight presidential race between Bore and Gush, current headmasters of the ruling elite, challenged daily by Ralph Nader to live up to the ideals of democracy (by the way, Bernie doesn't endorse Ralph either, shame of all shames), and a growing world-wide awareness of globalization's destruction of the planet, anything is possible. In the media invested korporate sponsored multi-ring circus of the U.S. electoral system, look for an October Surprise. More accurately, look for a world or national event orchestrated to give Al the edge that he needs to pull off an astonishing win in the final stretch, perhaps, an event so dramatic that coat tails sweep democrats into office and form a majority in the House and/or Senate again. Presto. Voila. The Committee chairmanship appears. When you hold on to a coat tail, typically, one follows someone's ass. The ass, is after all, the symbol of the Democratic Party. Girdled tightly together, kept under wraps until the most opportune moment, an October Surprise will make enough voters believe, that in the midst of yet another born-again crisis, the nation can ill afford to change (let's be fair and use the same word U.S. politicians use when they describe other leaders with whom they disagree) regimes in mid-stream. That is, with important October surprise events taking place in the world and/or nation, we would be foolish to change administration policy mid-stream. I can just see Al spouting off with his new-found Baptist preacher rhetoric (depending upon the audience), "Dubya, you're just too dumb to handle this. You have to know that Iraq is not what you say after you set up a pool table for the start of a new game." I can just hear Dubya responding, "It's not?"
What could an October surprise be? History offers a few events for review. In 1980, during the Iranian hostage crisis, according to Gary Sick, a then National Security Council Expert, there was,
Jimmy Carter was also planning the surprise release of the hostages just before the election. His surprised got surprised.
A short list of criteria and/or events that fueled surprises include:
All the important stuff.
Short of their entertainment value, programmed for the masses to foster mood alteration, these pale in comparison to the status quo's big bag of tricks ready to be sprung on the nation in the name of choosing the most powerful leader in the world in a country given the role of deciding what's best for the planet by none other than, God almighty Himself. If you look closely enough, you'll see it coded right there, in the Bible.
In the name of preserving American values, the rabbit getting magically pulled out of the political hat, could be a little skirmish with Iraq, tied exactly to a date and time that gives Al Gore the needed attention and added momentum to overcome the Green Party nuisance and threat to victory over Dubya, the executioner par excellence. No wonder there are high oil prices and talk of energy shortages for the people this winter - already. Go figure. In a nation that can maintain the best economy in it's history, it couldn't see a new oil crisis coming. Makes one confident in our leaders, does it not? Never mind, that in 1974, people waited in line for hours to purchase rationed gasoline and oil was in short supply. Ah. But we do love those super-huge SUVs whose tires blow out, don't we. The writing was on the wal in 1974 - develop energy independence. Grow hemp. Turn carbohydrates into hydrocarbons. Utilize biomass. Go wind and solar. That was 26 years ago! All of a sudden, Big Al is the crusader, fighting against the "greedy" oil companies, a knight in shining armor protecting the working man from the oil cartel. Own any oil company stock Al? How about you, class worfore (yes, with an "O"), George. If this horse pucky and Dubya's ties to oil don't make you vomit a black oil slick onto the scourge status quo politics in the US, then the possible October surprise may. What else might it be?
Remember Kosovo? You thought that went away. With elections completed in Yugoslavia to the tune of over $100-million thrown into the process by Uncle Sam, and NATO on alert, anything is possible. Look for possible NATO intervention before election day. Then, there's the one-missile threat from North Korea and the resurrected Strategic Defense Initiative under some other new acronym, such as TMD. Oh, yes. There's the "education recession" as Dubya calls it. It ads a touch of icing on the what's-next cake. So many possibilities. Yum.
Yes. Look for a surprise in Octember. Somewhere, someplace, on one of the 500 satellite TV channels, more likely, on all of them, it will be brought to you. If only high definition television were already deployed, now, in time for, the next round of Army censored news footage calmly accepted as truth by an unquestioning public.
Meanwhile, in the land of the free where baseball takes precedence over national presidential "debates", tireless Ralph Nader draws tens of thousands of young people in Eugene OR, Seattle WA, Minneapolis MN and Boston MA. They just don't come out to see Ralph. They pay $10 per person for the privilege and the honor of hearing him and participating in hope! Imagine Gush and Bore charging young people money to show and hear them speak. No-one would show. They couldn't get them to come if they paid them. Yet, these same people somehow manage to have the "suit - and - ties" pay up $10,000 or more per plate to sit down and have dinner with them - caviar and champagne anyone? Put it on the Waterford please. $5,000 per handshake no less! How many young people come out to schmoose with these purchased politicians of payola? Our democracy runneth over, like a bad case of lower GI track incontinence.
So, in the mumbo jumbo of this US presidential election cycle, I write, in scrambled Septober, expecting an Octember surprise. Nowonder. Politics as usual for the color blind, those who can't see green, unless of course it's on paper ready to be forked over to the best pimp-politicians in the land.
© 2000 Jozef Hand-Boniakowski, PhD