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Paul Craig Roberts, Contributor
Back during the George W. Bush neocon regime, President Hugo Chavez of Venezuela in his UN speech summed up George W. Bush for the world. I am quoting Chavez from memory, not verbatim. “Yesterday standing at this same podium was Satan himself, speaking as if he owned the world. You can still smell the sulfur.”
Chavez is one of the American right-wing’s favorite bogymen, because Chavez helps the people instead of bleeding them for the rich, which is Washington’s way.
While Washington has driven all but the one percent into the ground, Chavez cut poverty in half, doubled university enrollment, and provided health care and old age pensions to millions of Venezuelans for the first time. Little wonder he was elected to a fourth term as president despite the many millions of dollars Washington poured into the election campaign of Chavez’s opponent.
While Washington and the EU preach neoliberalism – the supremacy of capital over labor – South American politicians who reject Washington’s way are being elected and reelected in Venezuela, Ecuador, Brazil, Argentina, Uruguay, and Bolivia.
It was the Ecuadoran government, not Washington, that had the moral integrity to grant political asylum to WikiLeaks’ Julian Assange. The only time Washington grants asylum is when it can be used to embarrass an opponent.
In contrast to the leadership that is emerging in South America, as more governments there reject the traditional hegemony of Washington, the US political elite, whether Republican or Democrat, are aligned with the rich against the American people.
The Republican candidate, Mitt Romney, has promised to cut taxes on the rich, taxes which are already rock bottom, to block any regulation of the gangsters in the financial arena, and to privatize Social Security and Medicare.
Privatizing Social Security and Medicare means to divert the people’s tax dollars to the profits of private corporations. In Republican hands, privatization means only one thing: to cut the people’s benefits and to use the people’s tax dollars to increase the profits in the private sector. Romney’s policy is just another policy that sacrifices the people to the one percent.
Unfortunately, the Democrats, if a lesser evil, are still an evil. There is no reason to vote for the reelection of a president who codified into law the Bush regime’s destruction of the US Constitution, who went one step further and asserted the power to murder US citizens without due process of law, and who has done nothing to stop the exploitation of the American people by the one percent.
As Gerald Celente says in the Autumn Issue of the Trends Journal, when confronted with the choice between two evils, you don’t vote for the lesser evil. You boycott the election and do not vote. “Lesser or greater, evil is evil.”
If Americans had any sense, no one would vote in the November election. Whoever wins the November election, it will be a defeat for the American people.
An Obama or Romney win stands in stark contrast with Chavez’s win. Here is how Lula da Silva, the popular former president of Brazil summed it up: “Chavez’s victory is a victory for all the peoples of Latin America. It is another blow against imperialism.” Washington, making full use of the almighty dollar, was unable to buy the Venezuelan election.
How will a Romney or Obama win be summed up? The answer will be in terms of which candidate is best for Israel’s interest; which is best for Wall Street’s interest, which is best for agribusiness; which is most likely to attack Iran; which is most likely to subject economic and war protesters to indefinite detention as domestic extremists.
The only people who will benefit from the election of either Romney or Obama are those associated with the private oligarchies that rule America.
This article first appeared at Paul Craig Roberts’ new website Institute For Political Economy. Paul Craig Roberts was Assistant Secretary of the Treasury for Economic Policy and associate editor of the Wall Street Journal. He was columnist for Business Week, Scripps Howard News Service, and Creators Syndicate. He has had many university appointments. His Internet columns have attracted a worldwide following. Donations to Paul Craig Roberts are much appreciated.