I know what just happened, the title of this article just drew a bunch of jeers from “liberal” partisans and plaudits from “conservatives” ideologues. People get so wedded to the dogma of the powerful that they end up missing the trees for the planet. But I think it will be made evident to those who are actually able to think outside of the chains and whips of political boxes that my aim here is not to speak to speak to the mob mentality that has infected our politics but instead I hope to speak against it. What I hope to accomplish in this article is two fold: 1) show how politicians offer solutions which are nothing more than means to enrich themselves while robbing from the masses and 2) how we, the people, let dogma and ideological affinity get in the way of common sense and let politics abrogate our common humanity.
On the first part, what I write about Obamacare I can write about endless programs which are implemented in Washington DC by both bankrupt political parties. What I am humbly submitting before you is wisdom earned through the revelation that hardship induces in all those who get mugged by reality. Not too long ago, I was as partisan as they come; I was that “hopemonger” who nine years ago walked through walls to get Obama elected. I was that guy going around parroting political talking points and worshiping political jackals while dismissing the pains and struggles of “the other side”. To be blunt, I was a useful idiot to Democrats as I was passing along dogma of others as original thought. I swallowed whole the patently false notion that Democrats are for the people and regurgitated that bullcrap to other partisans and concurrently espoused that the issues that confound our nation can be laid at the feet of Republicans—as if Democrats were the cure to the ills of this world. Awakening came by way of missions and indigence. When injustice was no longer a theory to be enjoyed over lattes and tiramisu, I came to understand that it’s politics that is the enemy of all of us.
Let me talk about Obamacare for a minute, a program that was set up to ensure affordable healthcare for all Americans. Except it is doing no such thing; all the Affordable Health Care did was throw all of us onto an already broken health care system that values profits over actually healing people. Doctors and hospital workers will all tell you the same exact thing, the business of health care focuses more on the business at the cost of the heath care they are supposed to be providing to patients. Not too long ago, I had a knee infection so bad that I had to be hospitalized in Greenville South Carolina. I’m not recounting this story to somehow impugn the character of the doctors and nurses who literally saved my leg; it was their care and love that lets me walk about town now instead of being confined to a wheelchair.
In spite of the care of the endless staff at Greenville general who nursed me back to health, all of the workers in that hospital felt the pressure of getting patients out of the beds as quickly as possible. Hospitals run like boardrooms now, various matrices measure the “turnover rate” and “bed occupancy efficiency”—euphemisms and acronyms turning humanity into statistics to meet and profits to maximize. We have gone from “do no harm” as a doctor’s motto to “do meet ROI”. Up and down the health care supply chain from medical companies to health care providers to insurance companies, the focus is on maximizing profits instead of healing the sick. This is the greed that is consuming the world; this is why America has 5% of the world’s population yet consumes close to 40% of the world’s drugs. Do you know that nearly 7 in 10 people in America are currently taking some sort of pill? Our health care industry has turned us into a nation of lab rats—corporations and CEOs nothing more than drug dealers wearing suits and honorific titles.
And this is the abyss into which Obamacare threw all of us into. Instead of addressing the root cause of our broken healthcare system, ACA forced people—using coercive means—to sign up for health insurance from corporations. Obamacare chained us to a broken system, enslaved us to the whims of fortune 500 corporations and then used euphemisms and deceptive statistics to sell this crock of dung to the public. Remember how Obama said that ACA would bend the cost curve? Well that was a lie straight out of the devil’s red lips; the cost curve of health care has not bent at all, it is actually breaking us as the cost of medication and health care as a whole keeps exploding on a year over year basis. The whole system is unsustainable, when public companies have guns of greed pointed to their heads where they are expected to increase profits year over year in order to meet stock holder interests, what happens is the paradigm we have where the cost of health care has to go up continuously in order to appease investors.
This is the problem with the entire system, we have let “public interests”, corporations and bureaucracies in DC, hijack our government and every lever of power to funnel wealth away from the 99% right into the hands of the aristocrats in New York and their political lackeys in the halls of DC. But “we the people” are so blinded by partisan blinders that few among us are able to see past their blinders to see how we are all getting our pockets picked and our life savings cleaned out. Obamacare is endemic of the problem of a federalism to be honest; when power is coagulated in one spot, the power’s main aim becomes to enrich itself at the cost of the masses. Absolute power corrupts absolutely; consolidated power makes devils of even the most well meaning among us. We have been trained as a people to believe that the solutions will come from DC when in reality the only thing that comes from politicians of all stripes in Washington is 99 problems and a million problems to fix those problems. Problems begging problems but we are convinced our solution can only be arrived at through the mangled hands of problem begetters.
Now some Republicans will nod their heads thinking I’m stating “conservative policies”, except what I have enumerated is common sense that both “liberals” and “conservatives” could agree upon if they only stop finding their identity through politics. The most ardent liberal would agree that the solutions of our most pressing problems can only be addressed at the local level. Who knows better how to fix the despair in Chicago, those who live in the windy city or long-winded bureaucrats in DC? Would money not be better spent if resources were directed to community organizations who live in the midst of the masses instead of being taxed to death so that our money can be sent to Washington only to be eaten up by inefficiencies and graft? All of these programs in DC have tremendous overhead, for every dollar that is raised through taxes and fees to upwards of 80 cents on the dollar is used to pay for “administrative costs”.
These administrative costs is not just paying federal employees—most of that money is wasted as graft. Let me give you an example, I used to work at Booz Allen Hamilton; my former companies was one of the main contractors working on the implementation of the Affordable Health Care. Remember the debacle associated with launching the Obamacare web portal, well we were one of the ones who were “hired” to fix the snafu. Do you know how much money Booz Allen Hamilton made to “fix” a website? Literally millions of dollars was shoveled to Booz Allen Hamilton to work with the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) to “optomize” a website that could have been done by a smaller firm for pennies on the dollar. This is the interconnected corruption that is endemic in DC, private companies give millions to politicians and in return politicians give back to these private companies a windfall. Politicians and plutocrats thus stay enriching themselves as they implement programs that are sold as helping the people when in reality these programs are transferring money from the people to the 1%. You are getting levied to the tune of 1/3 of your paycheck, by the time you account for taxes, rent, and food you have dust left in your pockets. Meanwhile pricks like Romney, Trump, Obama and Hillary are paying an effective tax rate which is 1/3 what you pay. Republicans slither through their crooked teeth that they are going to go to DC to end this perversion of justice, that is like me going on a Big Mac diet to get in shape.
Breaking news my fellow “conservative” friends and Trump loyalists. Take this to the bank, Republicans and blow hard Trump will NEVER get rid of Obamacare. Know why? There are too many Republican companies like Booz Allen, Deloitte and endless consulting companies and government contractors who are making fortunes administering these programs for them to ever go away—there are too many pigs eating from the trough of corruption and injustice. Some of you love to bash on poor folks who “live off the dole” yet you overlook the monsters in Wall Street and in DC who are living off our souls! Again, politics gets in the way of common sense; we should all be outraged at the legalized theft that goes on in DC all day every day yet we are stuck on bashing each other as the wealthy pricks who bled this nation in 2008 are right back to bleeding us. This is what most of us refuse to understand, these prevaricating politicians from Obama to Trump are just pawns of the moneyed gentry who are doing the bidding of corporate wolves. For those who think that Trump is against globalism and this global pyramid scheme, just follow the money, how do you think Trump became wealthy and how do you think he continues to make his fortunes?
Our nation, since at least 1914, has been hijacked by robber barons who deploy their bank accounts like terrorists deploy IEDs. There was once a Roman senator who said “give the people bread and circus”—as in the people will be slaves to the few if the powerful can make the masses dependent on the powerful for food and entertainment. Excuse my French but this is the same shit that is going on now; we are all Romans now except instead of eating wild boar we are eating Monsanto GMO poisoned chicken and the gladiators we cheer on are at colleagues called football stadiums. They are taking our bread and we are making circuses of ourselves and this is how we ended up electing an empty suit teleprompter reading thespian Barack Obama in 2008 only to follow it up with a vapid carnival barking Trump who has weird sexual ideations about his own daughter! You can’t make this stuff up! This is what happens though when we treat our politics like a reality show; we get a reality show president and stay getting fleeced by political whores in DC and their plutocratic pimps on Wall Street.
Let me use political jargon real quick and “unpack” the lies that are sold to us as truth by axis of evil that are political hustlers, media shysters, and corporate gnomes. The notion that we are a capitalistic system is a farce equal to the notion that we are a representative Democracy (republic). What we have before us is an abomination of capitalism where the precept of “creative destruction”—the theory that markets regulate themselves through the invisible hand of competition and destruction/creation—has been wiped out by a system of rent-seeking vulture capitalists who use their affluence and influence to erect barriers to competition and pick off their competitors through endless regulations and red tape. Our votes are about as consequential as umbrellas during Noah’s flood—what do you think your vote is worth to a craven politician when one billionaire can give them a hundred thousand dollar check and all we have is a useless vote that is worth less than a Ramen noodle. Do you know that in the 1950’s, the average CEO was making 4 times as much as the average worker? Now the average CEO is making upward of 400 times as much as the average worker.
The gap between the .01% and the rest of us has exploded into a chasm that is swallowing whole masses of humanity into the abyss of poverty. More than 50% of Americans are now dependent on the government; not because they want to but because this economy sucks and minimum wage is now the new normal for working adults and college graduates alike. There is a reason for this, the rich a long time ago initiated a hostile takeover of our government to the point where government exists to protect the possessions of the 1% and to keep the rest of us perpetually in debt. How many people know what the Federal Reserve really does, that it’s not a government entity at all and that the Fed is actually owned by private banks? How many of us know the machinations behind fractional reserve and that inflation is a means of transferring wealth from us to the banks and the oligarchs. This is what politicians don’t tell you on either side, they have us fighting about politics so that we never question the policies that are pillaging all of us.
Government programs like Obamacare and yes even Social Security exist to make us bow before the corporate agenda. Our savings are confiscated by government programs and then these programs “invest” into various corporate bonds and stocks. We as a nation thus give veto power to the very same banks that cratered the economy in 2008. If we don’t do as they demand, then a phony crisis is created until we submit to their demands. You think this is impossible, for a few to literally crater the economy? Google “George Soros and British pound” and you will see how one man single handily created a crisis in Great Britain as he made billions of dollars by starting a run on the British pound. This is a playbook the oligarchs have turned to over and over again, JP Morgan started a run on the banks in 1914 by spreading rumors about the stability of banks through his media holdings and then “saved” the economy once he destroyed it. By the way, that is how the Federal Reserve was created in 1914, JP Morgan nearly killed the banking industry, then gave a “bailout” to the government, and his payback was creating the Fed as an “autonomous” agency. Autonomy really means not accountable to us, the people, as the Federal Reserve only answers to the board of the banking industry.
This is the story of America it seems as apple pie and baseball buntings. Every crisis is nothing more than an opportunity to pillage the citizenry as manipulative words are used to feign care when in reality they are gaming us into insolvency. Just as Social Security made us dependent on the intersection of government and the corporate agenda, time and time again either national tragedies or manufactured emergencies have been used to stir the public into a frenzy and then pass a program or a law that turns more and more of us into slaves of the system. You think it’s heresy that I dare talk about Social Security, a program that regressively taxes those on the lower end of the income scale while exempting the wealthy from paying a dime on any income after $100,000.
I hope my generation and those who come after start saving up, the pyramid scheme which has been on shaky ground will succumb to gravity soon enough because there are fewer workers paying into Social Security than there are people taking money out of it. All of these programs in DC are nothing but pass through taxes presented as benevolence. Paternalism is nothing more than a devilish scheme to keep us dependent on the “good will” of the oligarchy. They take from us dollars by ways of taxes, fees, and inflation and then turn around and give us pennies and call that the “social compact”. What a joke, it’s more like a social constrict as they squeeze us to enrich themselves—government nothing more than a mafia in dark suits and Borrelli shoes working for their corporate God fathers.
Let me delve into the other reason I wrote this article. If you remove ideology and red meat issues, at the core everyone from “left” to “right” are outraged by the same things and yearn for the same aspirations. We let political issues on the fringes tear us apart, but ask yourself is this really a time to fight over red meat issues when this country is bled to the bone marrow? The base of both parties (by the way do you know how insulting it is for the establishment to call you the base), both constituents of Republicans and Democrats can agree on these simple things: 1) economic fairness 2) freedom to pursue our happiness 3) opportunities to succeed and for our children to do better 4) for the beliefs of other people to not be pushed upon us 5) empower the communities over corporations
Those five areas I just stipulated and put forth, how many of you disagree with them? Everyone from the most ardent liberal to the most fervent conservative can agree on those five principles right? Well how about we focus like a laser on these five theses and fix our nation through these common grounds instead of bludgeoning each other over the political ideologies of politicians, pundits and plutocrats? The only way we can reclaim our nation from the clutches of avaricious pricks in $10,000 suits, who nearly destroyed our economy in 2007 and who slowly bleed us through weaponized economic policies, is to take power away from the hyenas in DC and in Wall Street and empower our communities instead. What I’m articulating is not a conservative or liberal mantra, I’m trying my hardest to speak to our connective humanity. Let us stop depending on the rich and powerful to fix our nation and give us a better tomorrow for continued wealth and status is dependent on more and more of us suffering.
Republicans and Democrats are the same beast. The former hobble people into insolvency and the latter hobble the masses into the arms of dependency. We are being ruled by crooks and muggers; Republicans use fiscal policies to give away the store to the 1% by ways of tax cuts and Democrats kneecap us into perpetual dependency on “the state”—both parties are mortal enemies of the masses. It’s Orwellian really, to call Obamacare a social safety net is an indication of the manipulative power of words. You know, in 1929 the Great Depression robbed everyday Americans of their life savings, the plutocrat Franklin Delano Roosevelt swept into power and implemented policies which feigned to give to the people when in reality he just saved the pricks like the Morgans, Rockefellers et al from meeting justice. What is sold to us as social safety net is really nothing more than a snare; the programs FDR implemented did nothing more than give meager means to the masses after the masses were robbed of their wealth by the same devils who robbed us of our savings in 2008.
Obamacare, and endless programs in DC, are really nothing more than scams and schemes to keep us perpetually dependent on this monstrous federal government which is taxing us to death—bleeding us with fees and burying us into insolvency by way of monetary policies. We are worried about terrorists overseas, which by the way are funded by our very own defense contracting companies, yet we overlook the fiscal jihadists at the Federal Reserve who use inflation to transfer money from us to the oligarchs who are sucking this planet dry and nullifying the dreams of more and more people and turning our hopes into the nightmare of homelessness and hopelessness. The only way we have any hope is to put aside politics, stop insulting each other over ideologies which don’t pay our rent, and find a way to dismantle to accumulated power in DC. The more we move towards a “globalized economy” the closer we come to a globalized government. You think bureaucrats in DC are disconnected from our lives and see us as nothing but statistics and pawns on the chess board, what do you think will happen when we have to submit to the edicts of a truly unified and global central bank?
Why do we keep doing this? How many times do we have to bang into the walls of broken promises and be broken with the lies of bankrupt politicians before we realize the insanity of this fraudulent two party system? Bush came in promising “compassionate conservatism” then started an unholy war in Iraq that silenced forever the lives of hundreds of thousands of Iraqi lives and thousands of our cherished veterans. Obama came in promising to change the perverse policies of Bush only to invert hope into a reality of perpetual wars throughout the globe from Syria to Libya to Yemen to Somalia to declaring a war on US here in America by transferring $14 trillion dollars from us to the same leeches who broke the economy. Now Trump comes in to Make America Great Again meanwhile he made his great fortune by refusing to pay a procession of people from here to Damascus and his whole enterprise was built on shopping around throughout the globe for the lowest cost of labor. Don’t believe me? Do a little research and you will realize that most of the workers at Mara Largo (his private resort) are imported workers from Eastern Europe. Maya Angelou said it best, for God’s sake when people tell you who they are through their actions, believe them!
The state of our politics is comical at best but really it’s more like a Shakespearean tragedy. People are so vested in their political cults that they willingly insult themselves by calling themselves “deplorable”, “nasty”, “the base”, and endless ways we attach insulting libels on our souls just for the sake of belonging. But we don’t belong, we are on the outside looking in while the rich we worship are laughing their collective asses off at us. What the powerful have perfected is the art of dividing us so that we can conquer ourselves. And boy are we doing a magnificent job of nullifying ourselves; grown people who should know better acting in the most infantile way dehumanizing others who suffer the same economic anxieties based on nothing more than whether or not someone toes the same political lines. Everyone claiming that others are trolls as we troll each other continuously, the wisdom of proverbs buried we have become a nation of memes. The more technology advances the more childish we get as we regress to 5th grade level taunts and hateful rhetoric. Meanwhile, the vices continue to turn and each one of us are getting more and more undone by economic uncertainties and worries. We have become a society of crabs clawing at each other instead of uniting and clawing at the barrel that entraps us. The left vs right divide in DC is nothing but theatrics, Obama and Trump are working in concert for their globalist patrons, Obama set the precedent that Trump is now exploiting. But politics has us fighting over banalities while in reality both the vapid Trump and the fraudulent Obama are doubling over laughing at us.
Wake up my fellow Americans, those who we think are our political heroes are actually vapid Neros. They don’t care an iota about us, they are just playing us like fiddles while America and the world is burning. One manufactured crisis after another is let loose upon us so that we can keep giving away our freedoms and becoming more and more dependent on “the state” for our livelihood and our sustenance. We are placing the noose around our collective necks, the more we shop at places like Walmart instead of mom and pop stores, the more we depend on bought and sold politicians in DC instead of empowering our communities, and the more we depend on scams and pyramid schemes like Obamacare and endless bureaucracies in DC, the tighter the rope will get. Eventually, as it happened in 2008, the chair will get kicked under our feet once again. Guess who will be the ones left dangling when another economic implosion happens again. #ObamaScam
My loyalty is no longer to party nor to ideology, my fidelity is to humanity and the injustice that robs us of our dignity.
Originally from Ethiopia with roots to Atse Tewodros II, Lij Teodrose is a former community organizer whose writing was incorporated into Barack Obama's South Carolina primary victory speech in 2008. He pivoted away from politics and decided to stand for collective justice after experiencing the reality of the forgotten masses. His writing defies conventional wisdom and challenges readers to look outside the constraints of labels and ideologies that serve to splinter the people. Lij Teodrose uses his pen to give a voice to the voiceless and to speak truth to power.
Latest posts by Lij Teodrose Fikremariam (see all)
- Ethiopia’s Choice: Poverty through Grievance or Prosperity through Unity - September 9, 2019
- Bloody 60s: the Decade that Aborted Leadership in America - August 22, 2019
- A Matter of Life or Death: We Cannot Afford to Ignore Mental Illnesses Any Longer - August 17, 2019