Presidents and politicians have been speaking up regarding the amount of control that corporations and banks hold for a very long time. It’s not really a secret at this point, and despite the fact that we’ve been warned about this misplaced power for decades, it seems we still have a lot of waking up to do. Jane Goodall said it best when she said that the corruption taking place today, and the power that corporations hold over governments, is “really frightening,” because things have really become out of control. Personally, I don’t know how anybody can call what we live in a democracy.
“A power has risen up in the government greater than the people themselves, consisting of many, and various, and powerful interests, combined into one mass, and held together by the cohesive power of the vast surplus in the banks.” – John C. Calhoun, 7th Vice President of the United States (source)
It’s great to see a presidential candidate like Bernie Sanders finally acknowledge this well-known fact. I’d also like to mention that we should not be so quick to judge the speaker of the message. What is resonating here is the truth behind the words, not who said it. To often our judgements blind us from seeing the point is being made, so I just wanted to make it clear that, regardless of your political stance, at the end of the day ‘truth’ always resonates.
“Let me tell you something that no other candidate for president will tell you, and that is, no matter who is elected to be president, that person will not be able to address the enormous problems facing the working families of our country. They will not be able to succeed because the power of corporate America, the power of Wall Street, the power of campaign donors is so great that no president alone can stand up to them. That is the truth. People may be uncomfortable about hearing it, but that is the reality.”
“The real menace of our Republic is the invisible government, which like a giant octopus sprawls its slimy legs over our cities, states and nation. . . . The little coterie of powerful international bankers virtually run the United States government for their own selfish purposes. They practically control both parties . . . [and] control the majority of the newspapers and magazines in this country. They use the columns of these papers to club into submission or drive out of office public officials who refuse to do the bidding of the powerful corrupt cliques which compose the invisible government. It operates under cover of a self-created screen [and] seizes our executive officers, legislative bodies, schools, courts, newspapers and every agency created for the public protection.” (source)(source) – John F. Hylan, Mayer of New York City from 1918-1925
Why Voting Gives Us The Illusion That We Live In A Democracy
“The world is governed by very different personages to what is imagined by those who are not behind the scenes.” – Benjamin Disraeli, First British MP (source, pg 131)
There is a saying that goes, “Democrats and Republicans are two wings of the same bird, and the flight path doesn’t change.” Does voting really make any difference whatsoever? Or is voting simply affording us the illusion of democracy, when we really live in, what some are calling, a ‘corporatocracy.’ Politicians may be able to influence certain pieces of legislature here and there, but ultimately, corporations hold so much power over governmental policy that major legislature is rarely passed through an actually democratic process. Even if it does, it generally favours the big corporations. The Trans Pacific Partnership (TTP) is a great example of this.
Corporations even have the power to manipulate science in order to influence government policy and safety regulations. Monsanto is the most obvious example of this, considering the situation with their product Roundup herbicide, with glyphosate being the main active ingredient. A recent study showed the world how Roundup Herbicide is actually 125x more toxic than regulators claimed. (source)
“It is commonly believed that Roundup is among the safest pesticides. . . . Despite its reputation, Roundup was by far the most toxic among the herbicides and insecticides tested. This inconsistency between scientific fact and industrial claim may be attributed to huge economic interests, which have been found to falsify health risk assessments and delay health policy decisions.” – R. Mesnage et al., Biomed Research International, Volume 2014 (2014) article ID 179691
I just wanted to make it clear that in most fields, from health to energy and transportation, there are always shady things going on which show what kind of a stranglehold these corporations hold over government policy.
“It is a system which has conscripted vast human and material resources into the building of a tightly knit, highly efficient machine that combines military, diplomatic, intelligence, economic, scientific and political operations. Its preparations are concealed, not published. Its mistakes are buried, not headlined. Its dissenters are silenced, not praised. No expenditure is questioned, no rumor is printed, no secret is revealed.” – JFK (source)
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Every single year we experience the same thing — we hear the same promises, we are pounded with false hope, and we then put our desire for change in the hands of another. Electing a president these days is usually a pretty empty gesture, and the fact that Bernie Sanders has acknowledged this, and is telling the American people that the political system needs a complete overhaul, is encouraging.
Theodore Roosevelt, among others, told us that presidents are selected, not elected. He also stated that: “Behind the ostensible government sits enthroned an invisible government owing no allegiance and acknowledging no responsibility to the people.” (source)
Bernie Sanders also touched on this power, and how it’s all held together by the big banks…
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