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July 11, 2016


Wichita, Kansas, is home base for the Koch Brothers; Hinsdale College (in south-central Michigan) is the school attended by Erik Prince of Blackwater fame. What do they have in common, if anything?

It is time to call a spade a spade and tell it like it is lest out democracy evaporate before our very eyes. The Koch Brothers are residents of Wichita and (with help from a list of very rich people which I will set forth hereinafter in Part II) have been and are currently attempting to take over our government and destroy our democracy with their well-funded nihilist-based libertarian views – and are on the verge of a takeover of the Republican Party in the process.

They are literally buying that party with campaign contributions and threats of primary opponents to Republican office holders who do not vote as instructed, all of which has weakened that party’s governing structure to such a point that a know-nothing such as Trump has come along and bullied that already sullied party into its nomination for president. The bigger question of crucial importance today is not whether Trump will be elected – presidents come and go – it is whether the Republican Party can survive as a viable force in American politics.

What significance should we attach to the continuing attempts of rich libertarians to undermine our government’s performance in governing in setting the stage for the takeover? Only this – our survival as a democracy is at stake. Libertarianism and democracy cannot co-exist; one holds that the people should self-govern, the other holds that “the market” must govern, or that there be no government or other regulation of “free markets,” depending upon the whim of libertarians who control the market.

We have had threats to our democracy before by fascist elements, but this is an inside job (as I recently blogged) where money rather than guns is the weapon of choice, a weapon greatly augmented by the Supreme Court’s holding in Citizens United, whose decision that money is speech and corporations are persons may have sounded the death knell of democracy given that huge pools of money are available to those who would destroy it. The court has provided the means for such destruction (unlimited campaign contributions); now we shall see whether democracy can withstand such money blizzards and accompanying propaganda, whether America is a country or a “market,” (where the tail wags the dog).

Erik Prince, the son of a very rich industrialist hailing from Holland, Michigan, and a Navy Seal though a dropout from the Naval Academy, is the head of Blackwater (the private army of the Bush-Cheney regime unaccountable to regular Army rules in Iraq and elsewhere) who have conducted mini-massacres in Iraq, provided (and are still providing) security for diplomats and other bigwigs, and doing the dirty work the Army could not legally do.

He spent some time earlier attending a liberal arts school in south-central Michigan, Hinsdale College, which has a notoriously right wing bent. He converted from his Dutch Reformed roots to Catholicism and with his penchant for authority and flag-waving it figures that Prince, a rich young man from a right wing environment, whose family generously contributed to the campaigns of George Bush and other right wing Republicans, could come up with a concept of a Blackwater composed of “civilian soldiers” who are protected from liability for atrocities committed both in war and peace by the murky legal standards of who you are working for, for instance, the military or the State Department.

It also figures that the Bush-Cheney regime, with campaign contributions in their pocket and dirty jobs they wanted done but which the Army could not legally do, would be agreeable to contracts with such as Blackwater, including some no-bid contracts, including one for a billion dollars to watch over the American embassy and visiting executive and congressional delegations in Iraq (I here note that the job of watching over embassies and visiting bigwigs used to be done by Marines at far less cost to taxpayers).

I have just finished reading Jane Mayer’s new book, Dark Money, and am re-reading Jeremy Scahill’s book, Blackwater, first published in 2007, for background. After this introductory note, I will be naming names of the money-changing “free market” yahoos who would destroy America’s democracy in the service of their bottom lines at this critical juncture in America’s history. Stay tuned.     GERALD      E


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