Le site Bellaciao: coloré, multiple, ou le meilleur cotoie fort heureusement le pire, mélangé, bizarre, picabien et dadaîste, explorant toutes sortes de registres et de régimes rhétoriques, drole et polémiqueur, surréaliste: rencontre d'un parapluie et d'une machine à coudre sur une table de dissection, têtes de Lénine sur le clavier d'un piano Steinway ou Bosendorfer...
FR
ES
Senal en Vivo
VIDEO
RADIO
FRIENDS SITES
with Bellaciao
Bellaciao hosted by
To rebel is right, to disobey is a duty, to act is necessary !
Bellaciao  mobile version   |   Home  |   About us   |   Donation  |   Links  |   Contact  |   Search
"Revolution is the Solution": Joel Hirschhorn interviewed by Jason Miller

by : Jason Miller
Saturday March 17, 2007 - 18:15
5 comments
JPEG - 14.8 kb

by Jason Miller

For several days I had been bedeviled by the recurring memory of a jingle from an out-dated television commercial. My recollection of the product they were promoting lay tantalizingly close to the edge of my consciousness, but remained stubbornly out of my reach.

So my “mind’s ear” was left listening to, “It’s time for a new beginning…” ad nauseam with no tangible context. (If I had had that, I would at least have known which company to despise for etching such an inane little tune into my brain).

“Beautifully harmonized” by a group of sickeningly enthusiastic twenty somethings accompanied by music undoubtedly composed during the “Age of Aquarius”, this little ditty molested my mind with more frequency than I care to recall.

At last I had an epiphany. Sometimes frustrated subconscious minds of Gen-Xers recovering from television addiction transmit their contents into our consciousness in markedly bizarre ways during our waking hours. Or to put it another way, if we ignore our dreams long enough, bad television forces its way into your unsuspecting brains. My hat goes off to Madison Avenue, Viacom, Fox, and the rest of the masters of the agitprop universe for their immense success in embedding their tripe deep within the human psyches of many of us.

My unconscious was obviously attempting to convey an important message with this horrid little refrain. My interview with Joel Hirschhorn, writer and political agitator, put things into perspective.

Joel provided me with a sober reminder that unless one has been dwelling under a pile of boulders in a cave reaching deep into the bowels of the Earth, it is painfully obvious that the United States and its nearly countless victims around the globe are in desperate need of a “new beginning.”

Shaken to its very core by the ravages of Military Keynesianism, neoliberal economic policies, crony capitalism, corporatism, corruption, and wanton disregard for the Constitution, international law, and standards of human decency, our Constitutional Republic is hanging by a very slender thread.

Even before plutocrats, corporations, lobbyists, and the rest of the malevolent cabal (who together represent a very small percentage of the populace in the United States) acted in concert to further their mutual interests by eviscerating the law of the land, the United States was far from being a democracy. Our Constitution, unique and progressive as it was prior to reactionary forces gutting it, was written as a framework for a limited form of representative democracy.

Like many activists, writers, Leftists, populists, and enraged US Americans of virtually all political stripes, occupations, and races, I have been longing to find a viable means of inciting or collaborating with a mass movement that will force the plutocracy to yield their stranglehold on wealth and power. I have come to the conclusion that dedicated and sustained individual efforts by tens of millions coupled with multiple collective actions carried out by substantial numbers of people will eventually reshape the political and socioeconomic landscape of the United States. If that fails, the increasingly hubristic, avaricious, and emboldened ruling class will most likely face a violent insurrection.

As he will tell you in the interview, Joel Hirschhorn has provided those of us in the “lower classes” with a tangible means of acting in unison to attack the entrenched power structure. His suggested strategy is peaceful, legal, and practical.

Here is Joel giving me the details:

1. Your biographical sketch indicates that you advocate a “Second American Revolution”. How do you envision this revolution playing out?

Despite the massive gun ownership in our country, I only foresee peaceful revolution acting within the law. Specifically, my hope is for an Article V convention, requested by 2/3 of the states and, if Congress obeys the Constitution, called by it. For over 200 years Congress has resisted granting a convention. Such a convention could consider a broad array of possible constitutional amendments offering many needed electoral, political and governmental reforms. It would be such a historic event; it would receive monumental public and media attention. So many groups on the left and right have always opposed a convention. Status quo power elites obviously fear such a convention. Talk of a runaway convention is used to create fear; this is ludicrous, mainly because any convention proposals must be ratified by ¾ of the states. I co-founded Friends of the Article V Convention (http://www.foavc.org/) to build national support for a convention.

2. What are the implications behind the title of your most recent book, Delusional Democracy?

My message is that massive numbers of Americans have deluded themselves about the nature of American representative democracy. If they think that our system is equitable, effective and trustworthy – or the best that it can be – they are truly delusional. The goal of my book was to breakthrough peoples’ psychological defenses, see the truth, and then become engaged to improve our beloved nation through many reforms.

3. How did your work as a Congressional staffer influence your strong antipathy for the entrenched duopoly of the Democratic and Republican parties?

Those 12 years working for Congress gave me first-hand experience with all the corruption, dishonesty and wasteful spending that defines this institution. The enormous negative influence of big corporate and other special interest money is even worse than informed people see. It also gave me remarkable exposure to Executive Branch agencies and how awful the federal bureaucracies are. I helped put a presidential appointee in jail; that was rewarding. And I did help write a few statutes that I was proud of.

4. Whom did you serve in Congress, what was your specific job, and with what party was your boss affiliated?

I was there from 1978 to 1990, working as a Senior Associate at was then the Congressional Office of Technology Assessment. I directed many studies on industrial and environmental issues, published many reports, and testified about 50 times before Senate and House hearings. I did a lot of work for specific members, including helping grassroots groups that had asked their congressman or senator for help.

5. Your homepage for your book mentions that you offer practical solutions for peacefully repairing our broken republic. Would you briefly summarize some of these solutions?

One of the most important is to spread the use of the Clean Money/Clean Elections approach for providing government funding for political campaigns; we must get big private money out of political campaigns. As an advocate for third parties, this policy approach is crucial to make third party candidates competitive with candidates from the two major parties. There are also a host of electoral reforms that we need to make voting easier and more widespread, such as making Election Day a national holiday. I also advocate making ballot initiatives and measures more widespread – among the states and at the federal level. This is a crucial element of direct democracy and because our representative democracy has failed the public interest, we desperately need some forms of direct democracy.

6. One of the fundamental flaws in many “solutions” to the myriad problems facing our republic is that they ignore the obvious fact that the economic paradigm loosely referred to as American Capitalism represents a significant barrier to our political system even approaching a true republic, let alone a democracy. What potential systemic economic remedies do you suggest?

An extremely important issue for me is the rising economic inequality. It comes to this: wealthy Americans (directly and through corporate venues) have taken over the political system and this has removed the necessary watchdog and regulator role of government in ensuring that our economic system is fair to working- and middle-class Americans. There really is a war on the middle class. We are rapidly approaching a two-class society: the rich Upper Class and the Lower Class for everyone else. We must stop corporate welfare, privatization of government that benefits contractors, illegal immigration that gives low cost labor to the private sector and drives down wages for citizens, and free trade that has already sold out many industrial sectors and put our nation deeply in debt. We must tax the wealthy much more, and limit the amount of profits made in the financial sectors – such as the obscene fees used by credit card companies.

7. You have initiated a drive for an Article V Constitutional convention. Would this involve rewriting the Constitution or simply amending it?

An Article V convention, just like Congress, can only make proposed amendments that must be ratified by ¾ of states – this cannot be circumvented. I cannot imagine any attempt at a wholesale rewriting of the Constitution. But I can foresee serious consideration of many possible amendments. There is too much concern about social issue amendments (like abortion and marriage), while the reality is that they have little chance of ratification. Convention delegates would spend much more effort on serious reforms to improve the quality of our democracy and government.

8. How many have signed on to your movement so far?

We really just got started with a website and still have not mounted a serious campaign to get members. But people are signing up everyday. We realize that we have to do a lot of outreach to inform and educate people about why we need an Article V convention and why we have a constitutional right to one, and also that Congress and many left- and right-wing groups have opposed a convention because they do not want to lose the power they now have to corrupt Congress and the presidency.

9. Who would participate in such a convention? How would they be chosen?

Article V leaves all the details of operation up to convention delegates, and the states are free to select their delegates as they choose. However, the very first Article V convention would be such a historic and newsworthy event – with global coverage – that attempts by corporate and other interests to pervert delegate selection and convention operation would be difficult to pull off. What I like to say is that the many millions of Americans that are truly fed up with the current state of our democracy and government that has already been taken over by evil and greedy forces should accept some risk and support an Article V convention. All revolutionaries must believe that there is so much to gain that the risk of making things even worse is worth taking.

10. What specific changes are you advocating if such a convention comes to pass?

My personal interest is in electoral, political and government reforms. Virtually all the reforms I examine and recommend in my book could be accomplished through constitutional amendments. People need to see amendments as an alternative form of lawmaking. Because Congress has failed the public as our regular lawmaking institution (and we have no federal ballot initiative mechanism to create laws), we are forced to use the Article V convention option the framers of the Constitution gave us – they correctly anticipated that the time would come when we the people acting through our sovereign states would need a way around Congress. One thing about Friends of the Article V Convention group that I stressed during its formation is that we should not make the mistake that all previous efforts at getting a convention made: namely, they all advocated a specific amendment. All that does is bring out opponents not just to the specific amendment, but to the convention idea itself. What I stress is that we must honor the exact words of Article V, and that means we have a right to a general convention. Convention delegates must be free to consider any possible amendments they think worthy of discussion. Our group will try very hard to avoid advocating specific amendments and stay passionately focused on getting a convention – period.

11. What are your thoughts on electronic voting machines?

I have always had a Luddite streak in me. And so I have always been skeptical of the trustworthiness of electronic voting. We need absolute transparency in our voting system to maximize trust in it. I have such a negative view of the two major parties that I think they (and their rich supporters) are quite capable of using any available dirty tricks to win elections. It may sound crazy, but if no can stop damn Internet spam and Microsoft can’t make reliable software, then why should we trust electronic voting?

12. With your obvious disdain for the two party duopoly, I assume you are not supporting a presidential hopeful from either side. Putting reality aside, who would you like to see as our next president?

I have zero confidence in ALL Democratic and Republican candidates; as long as they all take big money from corporate and other special interests they have no credibility and deserve no trust and public support. I have waited for some major party candidate to say that they would only take campaign contributions of no more than, say, $50 dollars from individuals and groups. I always vote for a third party candidate.

13. You often write about the need for a vibrant and competitive third party. Of the existing third parties, which do you think has the best opportunity to break the duopoly?

None of the current ones have a chance. That really saddens me. The two big ones, the Greens and Libertarians, never seem to have the capability of reaching a broad cross-section of Americans. They also delude themselves that winning a few local elections will, somehow, some day make them competitive on the national level; I just don’t see it happening. I am working with a new party: the Centrist Party (http://www.uscentrist.org/) that has just been formed, and I also support the Populist Party of America ( http://www.populistamerica.com/ ). There is also a new Whig Party that merits attention ( http://thephoenixchronicles.org/ ).

14. What do you say to critics who assert that voting for a third party candidate (i.e. Nader) is a waste or to those who contend that it robs a viable contender of a chance at victory?

The only people who should feel ashamed and guilty are the ones putting Democrats and Republicans in office. To me, it is pure insanity to keep putting both of these totally corrupt parties in power. I am a proud dissident and would rather see more people not vote, than keep voting for the two major parties. Lesser-evil voting has already destroyed our country. In a perverse way, it would help the nation if voter turnout dropped to, say, 10 percent of eligible voters, so the two-party controlled political system and government would have absolutely NO credibility, certainly not as any type of democracy. At least voting for third party candidates sends some message to the power elites about the degree of dissatisfaction in the electorate. I also favor, as an electoral reform, having all ballots give voters the option of None of the Above.

15. In light of the severity and extent of the Bush administration’s criminal behavior, how do you account for Pelosi taking “impeachment off the table” now that the Dems have control of Congress?

Just proves my point that Democrats as well as Republicans do not merit any support by true progressives, dissidents, and politically astute people. Another constitutional amendment we need is one that broadens the scope of justifications for impeachment of the president. I also advocate prosecution of Bush and Cheney for criminally negligent homicide. I am sick of so many people calling themselves progressives (what I call neo-progressives) because for some reason they are ashamed of openly calling themselves Democrats. Of course, as Pelosi and most other Democratic members of Congress are showing, neo-progressives should feel ashamed for their support of Democrats.

16. If you were sitting face to face with the reader of this interview, what are five things you would encourage them to do to aid in destroying the delusion and making democracy a reality?

First, visit http://www.foavc.org/ to learn more about the Article V convention provision in our Constitution and why it is needed.

Second, become an active member of the group and help build support for a convention among citizens and state legislatures. Anyone who thinks of themselves as a dissident or rebel, or is just turned off by our political and government system, should become a member.

Third, read my book Delusional Democracy – Fixing the Republic Without Overthrowing the Government. I can promise even the most politically engaged persons that they will learn a lot of new information about the decline of American democracy and the ways to restore it. People need to rally around a set of specific reforms to improve our nation. Emotions are not enough.

Fourth, stop voting for Democrats and Republicans. Either do not vote or find a third party candidate you feel good about.

Fifth, find a third party that looks like they have a set of principles that appeal to you, join and become active to make the party competitive at any level of government – local, state or federal – that they are active on.

I offer many thanks to Joel for giving me the opportunity to pick his brain a bit and to share the results with you. We amongst the poor, working, and middle classes owe you a debt of gratitude for your efforts, Joel!

I have signed on as a member of the Friends for the Article V Convention and have read Delusional Democracy. Both acts helped sustain my hope that the United States has not “crossed the Rubicon,” as some have suggested.

Over 70% of us want an end to the illegal occupation in Iraq and desire some form of guaranteed health care for all of our citizens. Both are minimal prerequisites for establishing some authentic morality as a nation, are essential to the well-being of US Americans and Iraqis alike, and are readily achievable simply by slashing the obscene $600 billion per year military budget. How many times do we need to be able to blow up the world before we are “safe”?

Despite the will of the people, the entrenched opulent class is working feverishly to ensure the perpetuation of their genocidal war on “terrorism”, which is actually blowback they created through their innumerable imperial provocations. The ruling elites have fought with virtually every fiber of their collective being to fend off nearly overwhelming popular demand to divert our tax money from killing to healing. Profits, power, property, and the military industrial complex have superseded the needs and welfare of We the People for decades.

Mustering the support to force a Constitutional convention would greatly enhance our chances of re-empowering ourselves and emasculating the tiny minority comprising the governing plutocracy in the United States.

Let’s follow Dwight Eisenhower’s suggestion and “demand a convention to propose amendments that can and will reverse any trends [we] see as fatal to true representative government."

You can help make it happen by signing on at http://www.foavc.org/index.htm .

Joel S. Hirschhorn is the author of Delusional Democracy - Fixing the Republic Without Overthrowing the Government (www.delusionaldemocracy.com). His current political writings have been greatly influenced by working as a senior staffer for the U.S. Congress and for the National Governors Association. He advocates a Second American Revolution, beginning with an Article V Convention to propose constitutional amendments.

Joel Hirschhorn Website: www.delusionaldemocracy.com

Jason Miller is a wage slave of the American Empire who has freed himself intellectually and spiritually. He writes prolifically, his essays have appeared widely on the Internet, and he volunteers at homeless shelters. He welcomes constructive correspondence at willpowerful@hotmail.com or via his blog, Thomas Paine’s Corner, at

http://civillibertarian.blogspot.com/



Leave a comment
Print this article


Commentaires de l'article
 

"Revolution is the Solution": Joel Hirschhorn interviewed by Jason Miller
Sunday March 18 - 05:13 - Posted by 25f251b970249927...

Are you sure your "little ditty" wasn’t from some political message?




"Revolution is the Solution": Joel Hirschhorn interviewed by Jason Miller
Sunday March 18 - 11:03 - Posted by ee1a7063350cb642...

this is just what the country needs - the inspired advice from another idealistic intellectual. rather than doing some useful work like baking bread or raising crops, this overeducated source of what’s good for us spends his time spinning nonsense. has he ever stopped to consider that this nation has always been run by elites and that any attempt to even the playing field will result in failure?

why should the elites be forced to conform to an amended - more equitable - constitution when they ignore the one in existence now? what force would make them conform - the military, police forces, the politicians and legal apparatus that they already control?

why did it take this hirschhorn character 12 years working within the system to finally catch on to how it works? a blind and honest man would have caught on in a matter of days, and would have quit soon thereafter.

my advice to hirschhorn and his ilk is for them to stop thinking so much and start doing something that is useful.




Keep attacking the pillars of this delusional democracy
Thursday March 29 - 20:14 - Posted by a1e48b2b550ac782...

There are three lie pillars that the PTB cannot allow the sheeple to doubt:
1. Opposing political parties.
2. A vote that counts.
3. A free media.
Pointing out these three frauds can never be allowed to reach the masses.




Keep attacking the pillars of this delusional democracy
Thursday March 29 - 21:30 - Posted by d1f7f8d3ba5fd153...

It becomes more and more clear to me every day the U.S. is spiraling down a path of self-destruction. I see my countrymen more and more each day at each others throats, never realizing all the while they have been set up by Elitists, like two pit bulls in a ring. Until WE ALL start understanding that those at the VERY TOP that control the money supply are at the ROOT of this current start of WW3 I see little way out of this coming Armageddon. War is basically an ECONOMIC proposal, instigated at it’s highest levels by those who instigate it for their PERSONAL enrichment, paying off lower level cronies with hush money and bribes to keep The Charade going. Until The U.S. and world can change it’s economic system and rid itself of the PARASITES of Usury,that create "money" from thin air at the Top of The Game, that syphon billions of dollars off for every poor "welfare queen" slob on the enconomic ladder that gets tossed a dollar, I see little hope for a real Golden Age. The answer is not communism. The answer is not fascism. The answer is not fake religions. The answer is not more violence. The answer is not more wars. The answer is not apathy. I think the only answer will be in understanding we all share a common desire for simple survival and until we rid ourselves of these blood sucking parasites the bloodletting will never cease.



XpxsLiqY
Thursday December 24 - 12:18 - Posted by XpxsLiqY - d8824fc9018593bd...

Hi! CyGRiotJ







Public Apology to Women of the World from The American Republic (Hypatia of Alex
Monday 31 - 15:21
by Willam Morgan
YES, THERE WILL BE ELECTION FRAUD, AND ON A GRAND SCALE
Sunday 23 - 18:32
by JOHN CHUCKMAN
Hillary Clinton will be first female President 2017
Monday 10 - 17:21
by Willam Morgan
Police Shootings: Law, Policy, and Accountability
Thursday 6 - 14:22
by William John Cox
AMERICA DESERVES BETTER, BUT EVEN MORE IMPORTANTLY, THE WORLD DESERVES BETTER
Thursday 29 - 18:02
by JOHN CHUCKMAN
Back to School for Fascist Dupont-Aignan
Thursday 15 - 11:32
by Nouveau Comité de Vigilance des Intellectuels Antifascistes
The Presidency: Character Matters
Friday 9 - 15:06
by William John Cox
WHY HILLARY IS THE PERFECT PERSON TO SECURE OBAMA’S LEGACY
Tuesday 30 - 18:08
by JOHN CHUCKMAN
Remake of Ben Hur in 2020 planned by new motion picture studio
Friday 26 - 15:50
by Wallace
THE CASE FOR DONALD TRUMP
Monday 22 - 19:32
by JOHN CHUCKMAN
THE CONSTITUTION OF THE UNITED STATES IS DEAD
Thursday 11 - 06:42
by David R. Hoffman, Legal Editor of Pravda.Ru
DONALD TRUMP AND THE GENIUS OF IDIOCY
Friday 5 - 00:47
by David R. Hoffman, Legal Editor of Pravda.Ru
FOOLING MOST OF THE PEOPLE MOST OF THE TIME IS WHAT AMERICAN POLITICS ARE ABOUT,
Friday 29 - 18:13
by JOHN CHUCKMAN
A message of your fellow striking workers from France
Tuesday 12 - 20:49
by Info’Com-CGT
The Right to Vote, Effectively
Friday 8 - 22:20
by William John Cox
Fourth of July Lies
Sunday 3 - 19:41
by June C. Terpstra
Who Should Make Political Policy, the People or the Politicians?
Friday 24 - 15:14
by William John Cox
Hollow Women of the Hegemon Part II: Atrocity Enabling Harpies
Tuesday 21 - 18:49
by Dr. June Terpstra
The American Republic Manifestum book is being made into a Movie
Saturday 11 - 15:54
by William Morgan
Write-in Voting and Political Protest
Wednesday 1 - 15:05
by William John Cox
Yves Bouvier art battle plays out in online and social media arena
Tuesday 31 - 21:12
by Dean Bagley
Damaged Candidate Clinton Can’t Call Out Trump
Friday 27 - 13:53
by Daniel Patrick Welch
PLEDGE OF THE NEW REPUBLICAN PARTY
Tuesday 24 - 21:53
by David R. Hoffman, Legal Editor of Pravda.Ru
LET TEXAS SECEDE
Thursday 19 - 00:53
by David R. Hoffman, Legal Editor of Pravda.Ru
LAS TRES ERRES A LA ENÉSIMA POTENCIA.-
Monday 16 - 15:35
by FREDDY SUBDIAGA
DEMAGOGIA POPULISTA...
Monday 16 - 15:26
by FREDDY SUBDIAGA
Oligarchs Won’t Let You Vote Their Wars Away
Wednesday 11 - 20:24
by Daniel Patrick Welch
AN AMERICAN ORIGINAL: JOHN KERRY - FROM HIS REMARKABLE RECENT COMMENCEMENT ADDR
Monday 9 - 20:40
by JOHN CHUCKMAN
Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton support the American Republic Manifestum
Monday 9 - 16:37
by William Morgan
Transformation: A Student-Led Mass Political Movement
Monday 25 - 19:28
by William John Cox
Algerian Feminists react to ’Hijab Day’ in Paris 2016
Monday 25 - 01:13
THE ILLUSION OF RIGHTS
Friday 22 - 18:45
by JOHN CHUCKMAN
US is real superpredator pretending to be victim
Monday 18 - 22:23
by Daniel Patrick Welch
Gaiacomm International has accidently created a fusion reaction/ignition.
Sunday 17 - 17:01
by William Morgan
Clinton’s Campaign Continues to Highlight Horrible Hillary
Saturday 9 - 00:57
by Daniel Patrick Welch
Armoiries racistes à Harvard : Plaidoyer pour la réflexion socio-historique
Thursday 7 - 18:56
by Samuel Beaudoin Guzzo
THANK YOU MISSISSIPPI FOR YOUR HATE
Wednesday 6 - 02:02
by David R. Hoffman, Legal Editor of Pravda.Ru
The PKK in Iraq: “We are ready to fight ISIS everywhere in the world”
Monday 4 - 14:33
by InfoAut
Clinton Crashes and Burns, Sanders Will Win (But hold off on the applause)
Friday 1 - 22:33
by Daniel Patrick Welch
Confirming Supreme Court Justices and Electing Presidents
Friday 1 - 20:59
by William John Cox

home | webmaster



Follow-up of the site's activity
RSS Bellaciao En


rss FR / rss IT / rss ES



Bellaciao hosted by DRI

It is the responsibility of the intellectual to speak the truth and to expose lies. Noam Chomsky
Facebook Twitter Google+
DAZIBAO
I, European citizen, won’t let refugees be rejected in my name
Thursday 10 March
©Olivier Jobard/Myop I, European citizen, won’t let refugees be rejected in my name THE RIGHT TO ASYLUM IS A RIGHT In the phrase « right to asylum », every word matters. Under the law, every person who is persecuted because of his or her political opinions or because of his or her identity, every person that is endangered by violence, war or misery has a RIGHT to seek asylum in another country The aim of this petition is to collect (...)
read more...
Neo-Nazis and far-right protesters in Ukraine 3 live-stream
Friday 24 January
2 comments
The far-right in Ukraine are acting as the vanguard of a protest movement that is being reported as pro-democracy. The situation on the ground is not as simple as pro-EU and trade versus pro-Putin and Russian hegemony in the region. When US Senator John McCain dined with Ukraine’s opposition leaders in December, he shared a table and later a stage with the leader of the extreme far-right Svoboda party Oleh Tyahnybok. This is Oleh Tyahnybok, he has claimed a "Moscow-Jewish mafia" (...)
read more...
Hugo Chavez is dead (video live)
Wednesday 6 March
by : Collective BELLACIAO
1 comment
President Hugo Chavez companeros venezueliano died after a long battle with cancer.
read more...
International initiative to stop the war in Syria Yes to democracy, no to foreign intervention!
Thursday 13 December
Your support here: http://www.peaceinsyria.org/support.php We, the undersigned, who are part of an international civil society increasingly worried about the awful bloodshed of the Syrian people, are supporting a political initiative based on the results of a fact-finding mission which some of our colleagues undertook to Beirut and Damascus in September 2012. This initiative consists in calling for a delegation of highranking personalities and public figures to go to Syria in order to (...)
read more...
THE KU KLUX KLAN ONCE AGAIN CONTROLS INDIANA
Monday 12 November
by : David R. Hoffman, Legal Editor of Pravda.Ru
7 comments
At first glance, the results of America’s 2012 election appear to be a triumph for social, racial, and economic justice and progress in the United States: California voters passed a proposition requiring the rich to shoulder their fair share of the tax burden; Two states, Colorado and Washington, legalized the recreational use of marijuana, while Massachusetts approved the use of marijuana for medical purposes; Washington and two other states, Maine and Maryland, legalized same-sex (...)
read more...
I’VE DECIDED TO "WASTE" MY VOTE
Sunday 28 October
by : David R. Hoffman, Legal Editor of Pravda.Ru
In a 2004 episode of Comedy Central’s animated series South Park, an election was held to determine whether the new mascot for the town’s elementary school would be a “giant douche” or a “turd sandwich.” Confronted with these two equally unpalatable choices, one child, Stan Marsh, refused to vote at all, which resulted in his ostracization and subsequent banishment from the town. Although this satirical vulgarity was intended as a commentary on the two (...)
read more...
HIGHER EDUCATION IN AMERICA: DREAM OR NIGHTMARE? PART IV
Friday 28 September
by : David R. Hoffman, Legal Editor of Pravda.Ru
PART I PART II PART III If there is one major inconsistency in life, it is that young people who know little more than family, friends and school are suddenly, at the age of eighteen, supposed to decide what they want to do for the rest of their lives. Unfortunately, because of their limited life experiences, the illusions they have about certain occupations do not always comport to the realities. I discovered this the first time I went to college. About a year into my studies, I (...)
read more...
HIGHER EDUCATION IN AMERICA: DREAM OR NIGHTMARE? PART III
Friday 28 September
by : David R. Hoffman, Legal Editor of Pravda.Ru
PART I PART II PART IV Disillusioned with the machinations of so-called “traditional” colleges, I became an adjunct instructor at several “for-profit” colleges. Thanks largely to the power and pervasiveness of the Internet, “for-profit” colleges (hereinafter for-profits) have become a growing phenomenon in America. They have also been the subject of much political debate and the focus of a Frontline special entitled College Inc. Unlike traditional (...)
read more...
HIGHER EDUCATION IN AMERICA: DREAM OR NIGHTMARE? PART II
Friday 28 September
by : David R. Hoffman, Legal Editor of Pravda.Ru
PART I PART III PART IV Several years ago, a young lady came into the college where I was teaching to inquire about a full-time instructor’s position in the sociology department. She was advised that only adjunct positions were available. Her response was, “No thanks. Once an adjunct, always an adjunct.” Her words still echo in my mind. Even as colleges and universities raise their tuition costs, they are relying more and more on adjunct instructors. Adjuncts are (...)
read more...
HIGHER EDUCATION IN AMERICA: DREAM OR NIGHTMARE? PART I
Friday 28 September
by : David R. Hoffman, Legal Editor of Pravda.Ru
PART II PART III PART IV When The Bill of Rights was added to the United States Constitution over two hundred years ago, Americans were blessed with many rights considered to be “fundamental.” One conspicuously missing, however, was the right to an education. This was not surprising given the tenor of the times. America was primarily an agrarian culture, and education, especially higher education, was viewed as a privilege reserved for the children of the rich and (...)
read more...
ONE SOLITARY LIFE, PART TWO
Monday 30 July
by : David R. Hoffman, Legal Editor of Pravda.Ru
3 comments
If there is one universal question that haunts all human beings at some point in their lives, it is, “Why do we die?” Death, after all, is the great illogic. It ultimately claims all, the rich and the poor, the mighty and the small, the good and the evil. Death also has the capability to make most human pursuits—such as the quest for wealth, fame and power—vacuous and fleeting. Given this reality, I have often wondered why so many people are still willing to (...)
read more...
HOW MUCH CORRUPTION CAN DEMOCRACY ENDURE?
Thursday 28 June
by : David R. Hoffman, Legal Editor of Pravda.Ru
6 comments
How much corruption can a “democracy” endure before it ceases to be a democracy? If five venal, mendacious, duplicitous, amoral, biased and (dare I say it) satanic Supreme Court “justices”—John Roberts, Samuel Alito, Antonin Scalia, Clarence Thomas and Anthony Kennedy—have their way, America will soon find out. In several previous articles for Pravda.Ru, I have consistently warned how the Supreme Court’s 2010 Citizens United decision is one of the (...)
read more...
DEMOCRACY IN THE HANDS OF IDIOTS, PART TWO
Tuesday 12 June
by : David R. Hoffman, Legal Editor of Pravda.Ru
1 comment
Imagine, if you will, that the United States government passes a law banning advertisers from sponsoring commercials on Rush Limbaugh’s radio show or Rupert Murdoch’s Fox (Faux) “News” Network. On one hand, there would be two decided advantages to this ban: The National IQ would undoubtedly increase several percentage points, and manipulative pseudo-journalists would no longer be able to appeal to the basest instincts in human nature for ratings and profit while (...)
read more...
DEMOCRACY IN THE HANDS OF IDIOTS
Thursday 7 June
by : David R. Hoffman, Pravda.Ru Legal Editor
4 comments
LIVE, from the State that brought you Senator Joseph McCarthy, Wisconsin voters now proudly present, fresh from his recall election victory, Governor Scott Walker! At first glance, it is almost unfathomable that anyone with a modicum of intelligence would have voted to retain Scott Walker as Wisconsin’s governor. This, after all, is a man who openly declared he is trying to destroy the rights of workers through a “divide and conquer” strategy; who received 61% of the (...)
read more...
PEOPLE WITHOUT SOULS
Tuesday 13 March
by : David R. Hoffman, Legal Editor of Pravda.Ru
2 comments
A question I’ve frequently been asked since I began writing for Pravda.Ru in 2003 is, “Why did you become disillusioned with the practice of law?” This question is understandable, particularly since, in most people’s minds, being an attorney is synonymous with wealth and political power. I’ve always been reluctant to answer this question for fear it will discourage conscientious and ethical people from pursuing careers in the legal profession—a (...)
read more...