30 Jan 2008

Corporate democracy is no democracy

Mumia has just backed Cynthia McKinney for the Green Party nomination which helps put the lie to suggestions that she is less radical than Nader!

This by the way is Mumia's take on US democracy...the democracy of billionaires.

The Corporate Elections
[col. writ. 1/22/08] (c) '08 Mumia Abu-Jamal

Do you ever wonder why certain candidates get mega-coverage and others get none?

That's because the corporate media concentrate more on a candidate's finances, than their positions. And they concentrate on the money race precisely because that money, for the most part, lands in the hands of the media industry.

Because media companies profit so handsomely from such donations, they can hardly be considered fair, detached and objective arbiters of either debates or other campaign coverage.

The money race begets the horse race; the horse race influences the media, and the media influences millions of voters; which starts the cycle anew.

I need not go into the phenomenon of 'pack journalism', for you've all seen it recently, where every media outlet gets it wrong in their collective predictions of how voters will vote.

And because of media power, those candidates who can't garner tens of millions of dollars before elections, are either ignored, or treated as colorful figures of occasional sidebar interest, the subject of smiles and faint shame.

Thus, neither Rep, Dennis Kucinich (D.- Oh.), Dr. Ron Paul (R. - Tex.), nor Mike Gravel can be taken seriously, even though all have been repeatedly elected to Congress, by healthy margins.

Because many of their messages conflicted with the market dictated "conventional wisdom" they have been virtually ignored, and most have been barred from televised political debates. In a nation of 300 million, any candidacy which doesn't get coverage over the airwaves isn't really a candidacy.

We've been told they're not serious contenders, because they've not raised serious money. Even though Dr. Paul beat Rudolph Giuliani handily in several states (coming in second in Nevada!), he's not serious, yet Giuliani is.

Money rules the roost!

It's been said that money is the mother's milk of politics.

It keeps the status quo static, for it winnows out those with views that do not cut the corporate mustard.

Why would a corporation donate (or bundle) tens of thousands of dollars -- or even millions -- with no hope of a return, such as favorable legislation or federal contracts?

No matter what any candidate may say before the elections, the odds are damned good that they won't change the rules afterwards. For to do so makes it easier for others to challenge them, and weakens their chances for reelection.

It ain't gonna happen.

In a nation where money rules almost everything, why would it no longer rule the political process?

--(c) '08 maj

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