by Terry Hand
Written: 26, Feb 2015
Right/Left “Divide and Conquer” Is NOT Democracy
The right/left “divide and conquer” political system is the basis of all of the troubles, issues, poverty and grief that citizens of most countries face today.
Providing two parties which APPEAR to be diametrically opposed is the method used to ensure that eligible voters are divided to the point that they will completely miss, and many times completely ignore, the very cause of the issues that affect our daily lives. Case in point:
The recent financial crises involving sub-prime mortgages, which many people now know was a deliberately created scheme that western banks, mostly New York and London, used to package or bundle junk mortgage debt instruments to sell on the derivatives market. The success (on the banking side) of this hugely profitable (for the creators) scheme was embarked upon by the largest banking institutions with reliance on the premise of “too big to fail” mentality.
The rapid progression of the scheme was fueled and enabled by the sometimes illegal practices of mortgage brokers who played their role by providing billions of dollars worth of mortgage loans to people who they knew would never be able to make the payments and that default was merely a matter of time from the date the mortgage was granted. When I say ‘illegal’, it was revealed that many of those brokers who at the time were earning more money than they could have only dreamed of a few years earlier, were in many cases inflating the incomes of mortgage applicants on the application forms.
We are all too familiar with the resulting destruction caused in the aftermath of this elaborately connived scheme. Millions of people world wide lost their houses, their jobs, their savings and were forced into diminished living conditions; the pension plans of millions of workers, valued in the billions of dollars, were wiped out in the blink of an eye.
Pension plan is the wrong description. A more accurate description would be the future hopes and dreams of secure retirement, of vacations, of grandparents seeing their grandchildren for the first time in distant places, of people with medical conditions having the ability to obtain and pay for quality treatment these are the things which were lost by these pension fund workers/contributors.
Banks that did not fail, the “too big to fail” banks, were promptly given a golden parachute of billions of dollars of taxpayer money to provide them liquidity. Where do the people/voters concentrate their anger? They don’t focus their anger on the source of these financial problems. NO, the people do just what they have been conditioned to do. They look towards the major political parties government/opposition, blaming one against the other and while those parties may have helped facilitate the fraud, or may even be complicit to some extent in its execution, they are simply doing the job they are expected to do.
Their job is to be on camera in order to divert the public attention away from the more hardened and sophisticated criminals who perpetrated and masterminded this sub-prime bubble. Thick skinned politicians are thick skinned because they are expected to draw the fire of voters’ anger and use their professional bafflegab to calm the masses. All of the mainstream parties and politicians are very adept at deflecting voter anger away from the culprits who create theses problems, presenting ambiguous and sometimes nonsensical reasons why these financial anomalies happen, citing inflationary, and financial cyclical trends , etc. This leaves the voters helpless to stop such practices or to obtain any form of accountability.
Voters still pay the cost of all this, while knowing they only get to choose a government and leader every four years or so, but is it really a choice? Considering the similarities of how each party operates and looking realistically at the most reasonable method of evaluating their performance (historic experience) the conclusion must be that there is no choice for voters in that regard. In the financial industry investors are given a disclaimer which reads “Past experience and historic returns are no guarantee of future earnings”. If voters were to look intently at the past 147 years of political performance of the mainstream parties and the resulting benefits passed to the voters I think we would finally have a valid explanation as to why more and more people are refraining from casting a vote at election time.
I think George Washington described this divide and conquer strategy best in his Farewell address when he said:
“The alternate domination of one faction over another, sharpened by the spirit, of revenge,
natural to party dissension, which in different ages and countries has perpetrated the most
horrid enormities, is itself a frightful despotism. But this leads at length to a more formal
and permanent despotism. The disorders and miseries, which will result, gradually inline
the minds of men to seek security and repose in the absolute power of an individual; and
sooner or later the chief (Harper comes to mind) of some prevailing faction, more able or
more fortunate than his competitors, turns this disposition to the purposes of his own
elevation, on the ruins of public liberty”. – George Washington.
In simple terms we [humankind] have been and continue to be manipulated by those in powerful positions using the “divide and conquer” method which I believe can be attributed to the Roman leaders who would in lands they occupied use this tactic and seek to have one internal faction (group) fighting against another faction or group. Iraq could be a modern day comparable example. The result is that the populace would divert their attention from the occupying invaders and the impositions that resulted from the presence of the occupiers. In addition the Romans just like our present day system diverted the attention of the populace from the negative aspects of life such as taxes, voluntary slavery, poverty etc, by creating the “Games”. They even gave the spectators in the coliseums free bread. This is comparable with today’s world of mindless and endless sports programs and pointless reality and entertainment shows such as Big Brother, Castaways, etc, ad infinitum, but we don’t have the privilege of receiving any free bread today.
The illusion of two opposing parties, government and opposition, is by far the most detrimental to our personal liberties and enjoyment of life. To be sure it is a situation that will never ever be resolved by continuing with the current Westminster system of government or even the US two party style system. No! The only way that the people of a province/state can effect the necessary changes which are clearly needed is to elect an outside/fringe party, preferably a grassroots party, that is committed to change the current system to one that offers direct input of the people. A system is needed whereby voters can strike down government legislation that is counter to their best interest. A party is needed that will endow the people with the supreme authority over the government and the judiciary, a party that will provide the voters with the authority to create and propose legislation which is needed and would be beneficial to the people, a party which will force both transparency and accountability on the government of the day; and after effecting all of the above the first step will have been made in restructuring the entire political system from its long history of controlling and exploiting citizens to a new era of citizens using a political system for the good of the province/state and its inhabitants and mankind in general.
Considering the lack of alternatives available in current mainstream BC politics, the BC Refederation party, commonly known as Refed, is a party which has been wholly committed to making the above changes since 2001!
Terry Hand is an independent writer and a member of the BC Refed party
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