The Nuclear Banana Republic Votes at Last

From Mexico’s Aristegui Noticias, a dyspeptic dismissal of what’s left of political order up in Gringolandia.

At last the electoral circus in the world’s largest and most dangerous Banana Republic, the United States, is coming to an end. The spectators, aka “We The People,” blessed to live in the oldest bourgeois democracy of our age, are choosing between two brilliant candidates. They can choose Dangerous Donald, a billionaire sexual harasser, evader of military service, tax cheat, Medicare cheat, racist, vulgarian, clear sufferer of Narcissistic Personality Disorder; compulsive abuser of power, habitual distorter of facts, and unscrupulous manipulator of people. In other words, a lumpen-politician in the service of America’s great capitalists, a man created over the past two decades by the Republican right and in particular by the top capo of Rupert Murdoch’s Fox News, the (likewise serial sexual harasser) Roger Ailes, and by the specialist in political dirty tricks Roger Stone. On this point at least, Wikileaks’ Julian Assange has been wrong, when he says that Donald Trump does not have the support of the media. Without Fox News, he never would have arrived at this point.

Whoever doesn’t want to roll the dice with Dangerous Donald can instead vote for Crooked Hillary (as Trump calls her), the political underling of Goldman Sachs, as well as of the currency mega-speculator George Soros, and the neo-cons of the Gringo oligarchy, the ‘neo-cons.’ For women, Hispanics and Muslims-in other words for the majority of the country-voting for Clinton will certainly have its tactical advantages. On the foreign affairs front, Dangerous Donald and Crooked Hillary will pursue essentially identical policies, since both are representatives of the oligarchy. Here, perhaps it is worth quoting [Cuban folk singer] Silvio Rodriguez’s Pequena Serenata Diurna, “It’s not the same, but nothing’s changed.” The millions of the dead that Bill and Hillary Clinton produced (Yugoslavia, Iraq, Libya Syria) will keep piling up whichever candidate wins.

And what is to be said of Bernie Sanders, that other circus acrobat who momentarily dizzied the young and the deluded with his radical aerobatics, only to leave them alone and disappointed, revealing himself for what he is: a revolutionary in house-slippers?

The real prize of these elections seems not to be the white house so much as the Supreme Court and in second place the Senate. In order to understand why large sections of the Republican Establishment are supporting an essentially delinquent presidential candidate, you have to look back to the Supreme Court of the year 2000. On Dec. 13 of that year, the Supreme Court Robbed the presidential election from Al Gore, who had obtained hundreds of thousands more votes than George Bush-by a 5 to 4 vote preventing a recount in Florida. Five judges appointed by Republicans voted against four appointed by democrats, giving the victory to Bush. Today, the same court sits paralyzed by the February death of the conservative Justice Antonin Scalia. Violating the Constitution and the official prerogatives of President Obama, the Republican majority in the Senate has simply refused to consider Obama’s candidate to replace him, in order maintain the impasse between the four Democratic judges and the four remaining Republicans on the high court. It essentially is the same situation as the one in Venezuela: in a power conflict within the dominant bourgeois social class, one faction has taken control of the highest court in order to paralyze the functioning of the state, thereby guaranteeing its own interests.

This together with systematic policy of repressing the voting rights of minorities by governors and legislators of states governed by Republicans, the removal of any limits on financing elections by fiat of the supreme court, the scandalous corruption of the primary voting system and the electoral college, the manipulation of public opinion by media corporations, and the numberless other dysfunctional aspects of the United States’ ‘Democracy:’ all of this seems to entirely justify describing the country as essentially a banana republic. All of this would be nothing more than their own business, except that they have nuclear weapons and 700 overseas military bases and two delinquent atomic weapon-ophile candidates. It’s 1933 all over again, but this time it’s nuclear.

Heinz Dieterich Translated from Spanish by International Boulevard.