Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Reflecting on 2007

It's normally my habit to look ahead instead of to the past, but as we are all coming to realize these days, unfinished business has a way of coming back to haunt us.

I see 2007 as both a disappointment and a great relief. I think a lot of peace and truth-loving Americans had great expectations when the Democrats took the majority in not only the House but (by the slimmest of margins) the Senate as well. We were met with the bitter (but necessary) realization that Democrats would not be our saviors from the Neocon brand of Imperialism, or even Fascism. Instead, far too many in that party have shown themselves to be nothing more than willing conspirators who have been hiding behind their "minority status" and continued to act as if they had no power to stop funding this war and the wholesale assault on our Constitutional Rights.

As Speaker of the House, Nancy Pelosi has the power to decide whether or not a bill comes to a vote or not. She voted against the "surge" in Iraq and increased funding for that war, but it never should have come up for a vote in the first place. Yet she wouldn't even consider putting impeachment hearings, even against someone as obviously shadey as Dick Cheney, "on the table."

As a registered voter in San Francisco, I'm one of Nancy Pelosi's constituents. I've lived in several states and I've never encountered any Representative as unresponsive as Speaker Pelosi. When I first sent her an email expressing my firm opposition to the Iraq War, I received a form letter back saying I'd have to call a certain number to confirm my status as a constituent on their "database." I don't even think it was a toll-free number. Fortunately, her local office is only a couple blocks away from my tenement. It wasn't long before I joined Code Pink and other groups that were forming a presence that Ms. Pelosi couldn't just dismiss with a form letter. But, after all this time as speaker of the house, Speaker Pelosi still hasn't met with any peace groups, and hasn't held a public town-hall meeting with any of her constituents since 2006. In my book, this is taxation without representation. It makes you wonder who Ms. Pelosi presumes is running this country, doesn't it? And as the year ended we in San Francisco came to the shocking realization that Nancy was briefed on waterboarding in 2002 and did not object.

As angry and disillusioned as the Democrats' obvious collusion has left us, it was undoubtedly necessary to wake us up to some important truths. Majority rule by Democrats is not going to save this country from Imperialism, Fascism, or even a looming dictatorship. That job lies with us, the People. And we can't wait around for some watchdog group or advocacy group to do this important work without us -- each and every one of us, as individuals, have to make our own unique contribution.

So there's a lot of positive things to be said about this past year as well -- I think the truth and individual empowerment is slowly picking up steam. The complicit corporate media, government spying, and (I'm quite sure) nasty COINTELPRO-type programs have been gumming up the works for some time on this front, but this last year showed me that real patriots are gumming up the works for the bad guys in a very big way. I'm frankly amazed we didn't experience a false-flag operation on the scale of another 9-11 last year, or the year before that at election time. I fully expected there'd be a full-scale war with Iran by now. For this let us thank God and everyone who cared enough to make that happen! And if you happen to be one of these, give yourself a pat on the back, and keep going! We've got a lot of work to do, but we've got a lot to be proud of as well.

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