Saturday, June 29, 2013

SCOTUS and your Supper

The last weeks of June 2013 provided much fodder for those who are watching the government. A failure of the Farm Bill, and a possible new punting of Immigration reform by the GOP led house, were just a few events causing the pundits to froth at the mouth, and prompting citizens to take to the streets with various signs. The "decisions" coming out of the Supreme Court, text friendly known as SCOTUS, provided a basic upsetness on all levels of the American public. The only ones celebrating the court this week were  same sex couples in California who do not want to go to Massachusetts to marry and extend their federal work benefits to their spouses. As states gear up for nasty expensive ballot initiatives on both sides of the debate due to SCOTUS batting the marriage issue back to them,  (apparently the rights of homosexuals do not deserve federal protection,) there is actually a more sinister issue afoot. 

The Roberts led court has been a boon to the corporate world. Everyone was up in arms thinking he would overturn Roe v Wade. He is actually doing things much worse. At least preventing abortion could be seen as having a reverence for life, what he and his court  are doing is anything but life affirming. In a word, he and the other conservative judges are telling businesses how to rephrase their arguments so they can win. By giving explicit direction, the court is helping big business present issues to the court,  so SCOtUS can give big business the friendly outcome they desire. This behavior is done at great expense to our democracy and our citizens rights. Sounds like  argel bargel activist judges to me. 

Roberts is rather nice looking though, but you think as a Catholic he would not do what he is doing to the living Americans. Catholics are supposed to have a consistent life ethic, from conception to grave, I have yet to find an Papal Encyclical granting charity to businesses over humans. As I have said before, the law is not necessarily moral, and any good lawyer can twist things around to prove their point in the name of preserving the constitution, all while still being able to sleep at night. 

Seems as though all the "pro life" judges on the court, are "pro" giving life, liberty and rights to corporations, and gutting all legislation to protect actual humans citizens within our borders. In just the last few years, the Court has radically rewritten laws in order to shield big business from liability, insulate corporate interests from environmental and antitrust regulation, make it easier for companies to discriminate against women and the elderly, and enable powerful interests to flood our election process with special interest dollars. Fairness has been thrown out the window. I really doubt if our founding fathers had this in mind.

I was driving through the Canadian Rockies way back in the mid 80's during the height of the Regan years. Remember those good old innocent care free days, when all we had to worry about was nuclear annihilation, which gender would open the door for whom,  and mandatory school prayer? I was listening to a broadcast on the CBC which was airing a speech by Dr. Helen Caldicott, founder of Physicians for Social Responsibility and Women Against Nuclear Disaster. She was reading a summary of an Australian Industrial Psychologists Thesis on how America as a nation got from FDR to Regan in 50 short years. The Thesis by Alex Carey examined the three main developments in the world during the 20th Century.

                        A) The Development of Democracy 

B) The Development of Capitalism

C) The Development of Propaganda to protect Capitalism from Democracy.

I had been looking for this thesis for years, and was told in 2003 by U Texas Austin Journalism professor Robert Jensen of its recent publication. is a series of video readings of Carey's thesis that was published in 2002. I suggest reading it as well, and supporting the U of Illinois press at the same time for making sure this important study is available to the world.

I was spellbound listening to Caldicott while creeping through the pine tree lined back roads of Eastern British Columbia. She quoted Carey in her talk about all the multinational corporations and how they affected education and public opinion. She drew conclusions to how the public was being spared the realities of nuclearism and trained to hate the "commies" as a purposeful distraction. I see the current hysteria over the private lives of homosexuals and the endless jabbering over vaginal probes and guns as even more distracting while very profound changes are happening to our rights as Americans. Carey in the 1980's was quite prophetic, and not in a good way.

The corporatists have been busy for the last 25 plus years. Those of us who are truly pro life, and see such a view point extending from the fetus to all of the planet, are labeled as insane. Now we are terrorists, anti American and naive because we think having clean water, fertile soil and food that does not have pesticides added to it's DNA are good ideas. While Americans fight amongst one another about abortion and gay marriage, draining the energy, attention and pocket books of the "little people," corporations have been quietly and successfully whittling away at our very personhood as Americans. They are doing things "legally," with explicit direction from SCOTUS.

The absence of morality in the law is very apparent when you look at Citizens United Decision and the current Roberts Court.  The Alliance for Justice has an excellent overview of the the rulings of this court

The main reason I get so exasperated over "constitutional rights" people and their tunnel vision over their so called right to own rocket launchers, is there are several other amendments that are being gutted by this "pro life" court. You can not eat your gun, nor will it assure your freedom when you have no rights compared to a non human corporation. Who are you going to shoot when going up against Monsanto invading your farm with GMO wheat you did not plant? The second amendment is useless when all the other ones are gutted. 

The Citizens United decision of the Supreme Court was brought by the group, I am not kidding nor did I make this up, I will let them speak for themselves in terms of their name

These so called people from, (look above for the name, I do not want to say the word, look at poor Paula Dean when she said an equally offensive word) tried to discredit Hillary Clinton during her failed presidential run with the release of an attack movie before a primary. Under the then financial reform by McCain Feingold legislation there were certain rules that the Clinton campaign felt were being violated by the release of this film. At issue was campaign rules, "free speech" and who could have it. Basically, the court told (look to the graphic above) how to frame the argument in order that (the group) could win. SCOTUS then released their decision that corporations are people, and money is speech, and to curtail either was against "the constitutional right to free speech." SCOTUS proclaimed that (the group) had not violated any campaign laws, because corporations are people with rights to expression. So, corporations have free speech, but we as Americans can't sue them, because they have had SCOTUS limit our ability to do so, we can't take pictures of abused animals on farms, and on and on and on. I would like to add this "group" is the same one that released the swift boat ads against Kerry, lying about his war record, and is a GOP/Koch brothers group, so PLEASE spare me the both political parties are guilty stuff. The Dems could not get it together to be this sinister, and I am a Green party member.

What does all this have to do with food? Privacy rights are being given to GMO companies so they don't have to label their products.  OSHA can't have an inspection of a pig farm polluting your water, because that would invade the privacy of the corporation er excuse me,  person. We can't resist fracking and all sorts of really interesting things when it comes to our food because to do so would violate the "person" (hint Corporation) putting methane in our drinking water. This SCOTUS pronouncement for the above group determines who owns food and who can grow it or eat it, because the corporations doing these things have "rights." The final caveat is that the corporations get the courts to legislate away their responsibilities, and remove our ability for redress or even complaining . 

The interview on June 29th's show was a great overview of what SCOTUS and the above group (again, I just can't say it or write it) is doing to our democracy and our food sources, and please log onto for the attempts to change the constitution to make, humans human, and speech into, well speech.

So, I am very happy that gay and lesbian couples feel vindicated, believe me I know what it is to feel alienated from the mainstream culture, and have your lifestyle be negated. Try being a chubby older straight woman in San Francisco, there is no use for you at all, no hope of a social life or community on any level.

While rights of homosexuals and access to abortion and birth control are important issues, I am more interested in the access to clean water, land and food. I actually think that having laws and rights to maintain life like air, housing and food are more important, but that is just me. This current court is taking the access to food, air, water and personhood away from the American people of all ages, genders, orientations, ethnic backgrounds and religions. The SCOTUS is taking away the American people's basic rights under the constitution, and giving them to corporations. The only way to circumvent this travesty of our democracy, is to bring back the human to personhood under the law.

When that happens, I will be celebrating.

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