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Voting For Empire

Short Version: mp3, 3.10 MBs, 3:52

Long Version: mp3, 3.51 MBs, 4:23

[Col. Recorded 8/01/04]

For millions of people, there exists in their minds, in their hearts, a hunger for change.
That hunger is becoming a driving force in the upcoming elections, and is being expressed in a way that can best be summed up: 'Anybody But Bush.'

President Bush's cowboy-style diplomacy, and the slick way he promised to govern one way, only to actually govern another, has grated on people, until many just want to see him quietly pass into retirement.

Moreover, the nature of the U.S. economy, with it's growing outsourcing, and capital flight abroad, also plays into this growing trend.

I find it utterly understandable, and even quite a good thing, but it has its problems.
What that means in Summer 2004 is an embrace of Massachusetts Senator John F. Kerry (D.-Mass.), the Democratic nominee for U.S. President.

But, Kerry, no matter his positive features, or his faults, isn't the real reason why Democrats gathered in rapture in Boston recently. They applauded him because they hunger for the political demise of George W. Bush.

One of Kerry's selling points is his plan to appeal to Europe to give a hand to the American colonial project in Iraq, instead of the cold shoulder which the Bush regime has received since the invasion and occupation of Iraq.

But plans are one thing; obstacles, another. Nations don't deal with other nations because they like, or dislike, a nation's leader. They deal with others based on the guiding light of self-interest. As the British Viscount Palmerston (H.J. Temple) (1784-1865) once intoned in the British House of Commons in 1848: "We have no eternal allies and we have no perpetual enemies. Our interests are eternal and perpetual, and these interests, it is our duty to follow."

When, or if, a President Kerry speaks softly and perhaps in French, to Europeans, seeking an infusion of European troops into the rolling ruins of a burning Iraq, he will hear a polite, yet firm response: "Pardon! Monsieur Kerry — mais non!" ("Sorry, Mr. Kerry! But, no!").

That's because few European leaders can withstand the floods of popular discontent that will accompany the use of their nation's troops in America's imperial exercise in Iraq.

They see it as America's problem — not theirs, and they will be hard-pressed to make it theirs.

Ultimately, what does it matter if Americans change the face of international policies, when it's the same, basic policy?

While both France and Germany will no doubt lust for entree into the Iraqi oilfields, they cannot ignore the lessons of Spain, and Britain.

Tony Blair's Labour Party is riding low these days, and Brits are not keen to continue sending their fathers and sons to Iraq. It's clear that Blair can't buy a new term.
Kerry's promise to "stay the course" in Iraq, one drawn for him by neocons from the oil-funded think tanks in Washington, does not endear him to many Democrats, who want to see Iraq off their front pages.

While Kerrys' 'stay the course' is an attempt to attract a thin slice of undecided, independent voters to his card, he also runs the risk of alienating a growing antiwar segment, that may choose to sit out the election, feeling it really makes no difference.
What the nation needs is not a new face, but a new policy — an anti-imperialist policy.
It does not have that option before it in any of the two corporate parties.

If that deep, unsatisfied yearning continues to grow, it can only feed even more alienation from the established political system, and perhaps to the voting process itself.

Or else Kerry will be but another politician, promising peace, yet delivering the horrors and loss of war.

Copyright 2004 Mumia Abu-Jamal

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Submitted by: Sis. Marpessa

Text © copyright 2003 by Mumia Abu-Jamal.
All rights reserved.
Reprinted by permission of the author.