America Is Not Fulfilling It’s Mission

Fairly unique among the countries of the world is that the United States of America was founded on an ideal- a mission. From the very first document that declared us independent, that mission was to ensure life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness to all men. It was also to ensure equality since all men were said to be created equal.

No one today would say that the phrase “men” should still only refer to propertied, white males. All but the most selfish and prejudiced would agree that today it really refers to all people

So The United States of America is a mission-driven entity. This makes the United States of America a not-for-profit endeavor. A not-for-profit is defined as a mission-driven business. That means it has income and expenses just like any business, but it is not out to make a profit- it’s out to serve it’s mission.

Like all not-for-profits the US’ sole purpose is to serve the public good. The elected officials are the administrators of the organization and we citizens are all the board of trustees. Notice that word “trustees”. That means we are all entrusted with ensuring that the public good is met.

It’s the job of the trustees to set policy, to help fundraise, to evaluate the administrators and to decide in general terms where resources (especially money) ought to be allocated.

How does this differ from a for-profit business, or what we normally just refer to as a business? Well a business is just out to make money and it can be market-based in that it can sell shares to stockholders. It can decide to change it’s purpose (it’s “mission” )and still be a for-profit business- a non-profit cannot. As long as it is trying to make profit- more money than it takes in (as much money beyond what it takes it as it can), then it’s fulfilling it’s purpose.

But a non-profit’s purpose is it’s mission- not making money. Any money it makes must be put back into the business and cannot be used to enrich shareholders or owners. So, a non-profit cannot be a market-based enterprise and it should not serve the market. Neither should the Untied States Government.

Is our government serving it’s mission? Is it providing life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness while ensuring the equality of all it’s citizens (who are, as the declaration says, created equal)? Is it serving its added mission- engraved on Lady Liberty -to welcome the world’s tired, poor, huddled masses yearning to be free? Is it a democracy like it’s supposed to be?

I don’t think so. You can’t have liberty in a militarized surveillance state. You can’t have a right to life in a world where profits are more important than health and safety. You can’t pursue happiness without a decent job and a living wage. You can’t be welcomed if there’s no path to citizenship.

The US can’t light the way to freedom when it oppresses other people all over the world. The US can’t have a democracy when money is speech and the more money you have the more control over policy you get.

The United States government was founded as a democracy with a mission: providing all people with the right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. Those rights were offered to the rest of the world by the Statue of Liberty. If we’re not doing that, then we’re not the United States- we’re something else. It’s time for us to re-dedicate ourselves to the mission. It’s time to stop being The Militarized Oligarchy of Financial Exploitation. It’s time to be The United States of America.

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Thank You Lady Liberty

She has been accepted as a cornerstone of the US- accepted by all. She stands for the idea of America as a land of opportunity- an opportunity that all the people of the world are welcome to partake. She charges us to welcome the world’s tired, poor and huddled masses yearning to be free. She tells us what we ought to be and gives us a bulwark against prejudice, xenophobia and selfishness. These are all strong negative streaks in the American capitalist character. Because she is accepted so unquestionably, Lady Liberty gives us a powerful tool to fight them.

Vote For The Best, Not The Electable

By voting for the lesser of two evils you just get more evil. The democratic party decided to move to the right after the devastating defeat of George McGovern. The democratic party decided to move even further to the right after the Reagan Revolution. But both Nixon and Reagan’s victories were due to an anomaly of the times. They were caused by the backlash to the culture wars of the sixties. Culture wars that are basically over now- and, interestingly, McGovern’s side has won.

It is no longer a social stigma to have sex before marriage- or to live together, women are universally perceived as equal to men, blacks have the same legal rights as whites, people can look and dress however they want, Gay marriage is legal all over the US, marijuana will soon be legal all over the US, abortion is still legal. There is still work to be done in these areas (especially economically). There are, shamefully, still pockets of disagreement with these new social paradigms- but they are now small pockets instead of a majority backed by the law of the land.

These cultural changes occurred in spite of the nation’s shift to the right politically and economically. By the time Clinton was elected the democratic party had become a right wing party when it came to economics and militarism. This was consciously and purposefully done to court big-money.

As they moved rightward they saw that they got elected so they continued to move to the right. By voting for them just because they’re better than the other party, you force them to the right. You make them the lesser of two evils instead of making them the good.

What if people voted for what they wanted instead of the lesser of two evils? Well the greater of two evils might get elected for awhile; but the lesser of two evils would shift to the left since they would see that staying on the right wasn’t getting them elected anyway. It would take awhile but eventually the democrats might become the party of the left again (or one of the parties to their left might gain enough votes to become wide-spread) as the country gets fed up with the greater of the two evils being in power.

I’d rather vote for what I believe in (true left-wing politicians) even if they can’t win. I’d rather have the slightly worse right-wing party in office for awhile to get a more left-wing party in office later on. The lesser of two evils is still evil. If you vote for the lesser of two evils- you guarantee that evil is what you always get.