A Complete Failure of Our Political System

From Kos:

Of all the people in that video, the only ones to get it right were the ones outside the White House protesting—and they didn’t even get a full sentence of coverage. It’s yet another example of how Iraq represented a complete failure of our political system . . .

I don’t think anyone in America’s political or media establishment has effectively grappled with their personal culpability for the Iraq fiasco.  A lot of people who knew better went along.  The voices speaking out against the war were ignored and silenced.

Krugman on the dynamic that still plays out in American politics:

The really striking thing, during the run-up to the war, was the illusion of consensus. To this day, pundits who got it wrong excuse themselves on the grounds that “everyone” thought that there was a solid case for war. Of course, they acknowledge, there were war opponents — but they were out of the mainstream.

The trouble with this argument is that it was and is circular: support for the war became part of the definition of what it meant to hold a mainstream opinion. Anyone who dissented, no matter how qualified, was ipso facto labeled as unworthy of consideration. This was true in political circles; it was equally true of much of the press, which effectively took sides and joined the war party.

I’m thinking about systems stuff lately and the Iraq war represented a massive breakdown but it didn’t happen overnight.  The Clinton impeachment nonsense was part of the breakdown.  The election of 2000 was part of the breakdown.  The arrogance and hubris of the followed the first Gulf War was part of the breakdown. 


  1. #1 by Larry Bergan on March 22, 2013 - 6:39 pm

    I believe the American media weeded out “journalists” who weren’t willing to play along with the hunting of Bill Clinton. When you have no decent reporting or utterly complicit reporting, including just-plain-silly reporting…

    Well, you can see what happened. Election thefts, war and anything else a team of America hating sociopaths can dream up.

  2. #2 by cav on March 22, 2013 - 10:12 pm

    Apparently Failure is what our representative ‘government’ does best.

    That, being firmly and unquestionably established, congratulations to the 102 House Democrats – including Pelosi and Van Hollen, who voted against the ONLY Democratic budget proposal that might have actually reduced the deficit WITHOUT sticking the poor and the elderly with the bill. The ONLY budget that actually crosses its t’s and dots its i’s and gets four when it adds two and two – without magic thinking, asterisks, and outright lies.

    Something that cannot be said of Ryan, Bowles / Simpson, or Obama’s ‘grand’ ‘bargain’.

  3. #3 by Larry Bergan on March 22, 2013 - 10:49 pm

    Who really knows when the breakdown of the media really started. There is good evidence it may have started with William Randolf Hurst, but after the theft of the 2000 election and the totally compliant “paper of record”, (and every other printed publication), in that matter, any hope for a democracy became a mockery.

    We’ll never get it back without public oversight of our elections. The corporations will hate it, but they will just have to sit and watch while our hand-marked ballots are counted by ordinary people with an interest in who really won and a future not based only on Cheney’s bottom line.

  4. #4 by brewski on March 23, 2013 - 9:14 am

    Then there was the total mockery of a cheerleading campaign conducted by the media in 2008. Hard to fight free advertising on the front page of the New York Times every day.

  5. #5 by cav on March 23, 2013 - 9:22 am

    There’s more awaiting.



    • #6 by Larry Bergan on March 23, 2013 - 10:17 am

      Acronyms suck!

      Fake names suck worse!

  6. #7 by cav on March 23, 2013 - 7:04 pm

    As far as what congress might be working on in order to fix this mess I suppose that for me a big rewrite would be an amendment that establishes that Corporations are ‘tools of business’ and have no constitutional protections. That any corporation doing business in America is bound by our laws and hold a responsibility not just to their stockholders but to their employees, customers and their community. No law or treaty may be established that gives corporations precedence over the people, any corporation doing business here, foreign or domestic, shall be required to meet the community standards as established by law, and no treaty or agreement nullifies that. Corporations may not have better protections under the law then persons. A person being a living breathing human being who has reached the legal age to contract.

    I think that destroys some parts of every ‘free trade’ agreements we have, makes the TPP a non starter, eliminates most of the current immunity laws (like those for gun manufacturers), and ends the stupid excuse that business are only answerable to their stockholders. All of which are needed imho. But I’m open to suggestions, of the way to make it clear that corporations are not only not people but they do not in any way eliminate their human owners responsibility to those around them.

  7. #9 by Larry Bergan on March 23, 2013 - 9:13 pm

    A trillion here and a trillion there.

    Adds up to real money.

  8. #10 by cav on March 24, 2013 - 9:27 am

    It’s toy money until they extract it from the people’s hides.

    As for acronyms. One wonders if ALEC doesn’t have something to do with penning TPP, or NAFTA.


  9. #11 by cav on March 24, 2013 - 12:21 pm

    Big day in the Behave State, eh?

    Off to Shursh or the range? But blogging would be a sin.

  10. #12 by Larry Bergan on March 25, 2013 - 12:34 pm

    It’s no longer a free country if I can’t take my assault weapon to the tanning booth!

    I exercise MY free speech with a glock!

    Just kidding. I don’t even own a Saturday night special. Might blow up in my hand.

  11. #13 by Obama's jack booted thruncheon weilding goons on March 25, 2013 - 12:39 pm

    You being able to be online and write continual and sewery, watery drivel, is a major concession to the intelligent people of the country Larry.

    Guns in the hands in the law abiding are well regulated, but your diarrhea of the mouth is barely covered by the Constitution. There is nothing in there about verbal masturbation or any rights therein..

  12. #14 by Larry Bergan on March 25, 2013 - 12:51 pm

    Obama’s jack booted thruncheon weilding goons:

    Is that name from your fathers or your mothers side?


    You suck!

  13. #15 by cav on March 25, 2013 - 2:41 pm

  14. #16 by Larry Bergan on March 25, 2013 - 3:34 pm

    Thank you cav.

    That would be funny if it weren’t so sad.

  15. #17 by obama's jack booted truncheon wielding goons on March 26, 2013 - 12:21 pm

    Thanks for catching the typo, I haven’t looked back since I made the name, I appreciate your efforts, it’s a misspelled word, not nearly as sad as still actively supporting a drone murder terrorist in obama…

    On with the sewery drivel Larry!! You have all the right in the world to support a drone murder terrorist utilizing nazi terror weapons, banned as a war crime at Nuremburg..

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