An Alaskan journalist's perspective on local and national issues

Posts tagged ‘Congress’

America’s Government is Old

People can argue until they are blue in the face about it being a left thing or a right thing, but the fact is that it is not.  What is wrong this this country can be seen in what is happening in Congress right now.  It has been going on since the beginning of the Internet, and it can be seen in perfect clarity at this very moment.  So, what’s wrong with this country – the government is old.

Nowhere is this problem more visible than with the battle for SOPA and PIPA.  It is all over the internet today.  Google and Wikipedia are blacking out their pages to protest it.  If they were smart, Facebook and Twitter would have joined the fight.  If you want people to fight against these two acts, deny people their Facebook.  It would be a fury of anger at the government.  But alas, it is still a good fight that has been done on the behalf of this battle that all of the internet is firmly on one side.

But it is a sign too about how this government is.  It is very, very old.  What’s more is that the age is starting to show, and it is getting to be a real problem for the people in this country who are becoming more politically aware.

Over the last ten years, technology has changed everything.  As more and more people are becoming connected online, the cultural values and the like that have dominated society are eroding away.  Culture is becoming one online.  The online communities are growing every day.  Technology has linked our world together the way nothing ever has before.  It is an amazing time to be alive.

The problem is that while the technology is becoming a river of discovery and growth, the government of this country is behind.  This government is living in the 20th Century.  There is proof like no other when you look at how things are being handled right now.

At the end of the 90’s, things were great for this country.  Our economy was on top of the world, and there were no signs that things were going to go wrong.  Not on the surface, anyway.  Our government, especially the Republican side of the fence, keeps wanting to go back to that.  They don’t seem to realize that we can never go back to that.

The reasons are simple – everything has changed since 1999.  The world is a 100% different place than it was at the end of the century.  The Internet has changed business in this world forever.  Technology has changed the way people live their lives.  The economy dramatically failing has changed the opportunities this country has.  And most of all, the demographics have drastically changed.

Other nations have figured this out, and have taken steps to change with the times.  Europe has invested in infrastructure.  While many nations are in bad shape, many others are holding strong.  They have an up-to-date transit system, universal health care, a national wireless service.  They aren’t investing the way America is in war and bad business practices, along with deregulation.  They are embracing the future of technology.  Some nations quicker than others, but America is going next to nowhere in a big hurry.

Asia is really coming into its own too.  Japan is looking to be coming out of the economic slump that it has been in for the last twenty years.  China is rapidly expanding their economic power.  South Korea has the largest wireless network on the face of the planet, universal health care, and they are doing very well.

Even our friends close to home are doing pretty good.  Canada is holding strong.  They have some problems, but they are holding out.  Meanwhile, America is falling into a grave of economic failure.  This country is headed in the wrong direction again, and fast.

We haven’t learned that the way we are doing business isn’t working.  The reason we haven’t learned that, in my opinion, is because our nation’s congress is too old.  We have an old guard, and they want to do things the way that they have always been done.  But as we have seen, that system is no longer palatable.  The times have changed, and we have to change with them.  But the old guard is looking to keep things the way they always were.

And the old guard doesn’t stop at the government.  The people who run the corporations aren’t figuring it out either.  SOPA and PIPA are the result of the media industry not wanting things to change.  Never mind that what they call “piracy” has changed the shape of business forever.  Napster opened the flood-gates of a new way of doing business, and it has changed the face of business not just in America, but across the globe.

That’s the really ugly part of SOPA and PIPA.  They wouldn’t just hurt business here in America, but across the globe.  It would effectively kill the internet.  It would destroy the livelihoods of thousands, maybe millions of people.  Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Google, Yahoo, all of those sites would be gone in a day.  Because these acts aren’t targeted, like the DMCA was.  These are a nuclear weapon, because the media industry has realized that this isn’t going to be stopped.  The technology is going to grow and change things even more.

There is hope, though.  There are signs that the old guard is being fought against.  The Occupy movement has shown that the young guard is growing, and they are tired of things staying the way they are.  They know what I know – that things can be better, if we change the way we do things.

For 50 years, deregulation and “free market” has been the mantra.  We’re now seeing that that isn’t going to work anymore.  America isn’t the massive growing market.  We have stopped our growth spurt.  Now things have to change.  And the youth are getting active.  However, more needs to happen.  We have to elect younger leaders with an eye for changing things.  These old men and women who run Congress are driving us into the ground.

So, what’s your next move?

Peace out,

Lefty

The End of Freedom in America

Picture this – you’re sitting down with your family for dinner, ready to enjoy.  It has been a lovely day, and now you are going to get to have this day shared with the people you love.  Suddenly, the military bursts into your home.  They throw you down on the ground, along with your family.  They put a black bag over your head, throw you into the back of a van, and take you somewhere.  It is far away, where it is hot, and almost every day, you get to be subject to all sorts of tortures.  Sounds like something that happens overseas, right?  Don’t think that it could happen in the USA, right?  Wrong!

Thanks to a new bill, the National Defense Authorization Act for the Fiscal Year of 2012, there are several stipulations that are going to allow this government to be able to take American citizens, without trial or charge, throw you into Gitmo, for the rest of your life, and it has just been discovered that there are also stipulations that will allow the people there to torture Americans who are thrown in there, without ever having been told why.

Take that in for a moment.  The horrendous tortures that films like “Taxi to the Dark Side” have shown will be able to be subjected to the American people.  This is beyond evil, it’s insanity.  But there is one comforting thing that comes from this – it ends over 20 years of conflicting opinions.

Ever since the end of the McCarthy era, there has been this idea that is kicking around – is America heading toward fascism?  Well, if you take a nice long look at this bill, yes, it completely is!  This is a good thing because it will  end the discussion.

It is also a good thing because it has shown that our government CAN actually compromise and work together.  I mean, this passed the Senate 93-7.  That’s a lot of active effort to get along, don’t you think?  When it comes to something like universal health care, our government is gridlocked, but when it comes to destroying the Fourth Amendment, that is something they will go straight and true towards.

Here’s another kicker – if you choose to fight this, after it has passed, it won’t matter!  The government can label you a “terror suspect” and throw you away for the rest of your life.  Dissent won’t matter very soon, because any groups who speak out can be thrown away, without a moment’s notice.

And of course, the Tea Party is nowhere to be heard from.  These corporate goons haven’t said a single word about this.  The fact is that there is some real common ground being found on both sides toward this.  The supposedly “progressive” Democrats and the cutthroat fascist Republicans were all on-board, full-steam ahead.

It’s a terrifying and sad day in America, ladies and gentlemen.  Very soon, there will be nobody left who will speak out, because this government will be throwing everybody who doesn’t agree with them away, forever!  No trial, no charge, no jury, no remembering.  They will just make you disappear.  I bet, when this country’s economy is dead, housing prisoners will be too hard, so they will probably just kill people.  Am I being a finalist?  Well, give it time, we’ll see.

In any case, the day is soon coming that peace may not be the only option we have for protesting.  After reading stuff like this, I want to see riots in the street.  There should be some people who are calling out the insanity, because this all hinges on the House having more sense than the Senate, and the gutless coward Obama following through, because he said he would veto this, outright.  I don’t trust anything from that little worm.

It’s a scary day, America.  What do we do?  What can we do?  What is left to be done?

Peace out,

Lefty

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