Review: TED Talk Eric X. Li on China and the US


“We live in the dusk of an era. Meta-narratives that make universal claims failed us in the 20th century and are failing us in the 21st. Meta-narrative is the cancer that is killing democracy from the inside.

Now, I want to clarify something. I’m not here to make an indictment of democracy. On the contrary, I think democracy contributed to the rise of the West and the creation of the modern world. It is the universal claim that many Western elites are making about their political system, the hubris, that is at the heart of the West’s current ills. If they would spend just a little less time on trying to force their way onto others, and a little bit more on political reform at home, they might give their democracy a better chance.

China’s political model will never supplant electoral democracy, because unlike the latter, it doesn’t pretend to be universal. It cannot be exported. But that is the point precisely. The significance of China’s example is not that it provides an alternative, but the demonstration that alternatives exist.

Let us draw to a close this era of meta-narratives. Communism and democracy may both be laudable ideals, but the era of their dogmatic universalism is over. Let us stop telling people and our children there’s only one way to govern ourselves and a singular future towards which all societies must evolve. It is wrong. It is irresponsible. And worst of all, it is boring. Let universality make way for plurality. Perhaps a more interesting age is upon us. Are we brave enough to welcome it?

Thank you.”— Eric X. Li’s TED talk: A TALE OF TWO POLITICAL SYSTEMS

I do not subscribe to China’s one party system, but the faults of China’s system aside, it is maintaining itself and its people, unlike the US and its western model that is increasingly about survival through annexation.

The US model is about putting off the problems of here and now, by putting effort into destroying and annexing always the next thing, the next country, the next resource.

However a country that does not resolve the issues of its own back yard before expanding and enforcing its will on other countries, is like a dog with rabies, running around the neighborhood and jumping fences and killing and mating with other dogs. It is a policy of barbarism and ultimately genocide and madness.

So while I do not think China’s system is an answer, compromised as it is by corruption and human rights violations, it is clear to me that unchecked Capitalism masquerading as Democracy, what the US and other Westernized Nations are calling Democracy… is a more compromised, more untenable, more destructive, and ultimately more evil system.

So the crux of Eric’s closing speech (quoted above)is sound, not that we should adopt China’s system, but that we should be flexible, and open to a changing and changed system, and the idea that there are a multitude of systems and solutions that remain untried.

Open to the idea that we as individuals, groups, and nations must always be looking to form… a more perfect union.

A successful nation is perhaps not an end, but a journey. And it is the things we allow a nation to do on that unending journey, in our name, that defines not just the success and the failure, but the good and the evil, of our lives.

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Gary Johnson Romney Obama Ron Paul Stewart Alexander and the Lesser of Evils

“I’m an old lefty. I believe the government must do for people, what people cannot do for themselves.”
— Green Arrow courtesy of Dwayne McDuffie’s excellent JUSTICE LEAGUE UNLIMITED

I’ve been watching classic episodes of JUSTICE LEAGUE UNLIMITED, a show that remains animated television at its best, and for most of its run the love letter of producer/lead writer Dwayne McDuffie. The recently departed Dwayne McDuffie who followed up his stellar work at Warner Brothers Animation, with unfortunately editorially sabotaged work at both DC COMICS and MARVEL COMICS.

With the 2012 US Presidential election nearly upon us, the take away from my watching of JUSTICE LEAGUE UNLIMITED is that line, and the idea that only in a country as monumentally effed up and corrupt and mismanaged as America, could anyone consider either of the television approved candidates, Obama or Romney, steeped as they both are in the blood and oil and pus and complicity of big business, as viable people’s candidates.

You are a fool if you believe Obama is, and has been, in his tenure anything more than Bush-lite. He has rubber-stamped policies, in the past four years, that have destroyed civil and economic liberties domestically and expanded the endless war abroad.

And to make his conservatism seem liberal, he is contrasted with a malicious madman in Romney, though both candidates are more alike than they are different, taking money as they are from the same masters. But this illusion of conflict is played up in the media, to give the American people once more… the illusion of choice; a choice between the lesser of two evils, the choice between big business crafted puppets, between Mussolini or Hitler if you like, which is to say… no choice at all.

I voted for the ‘lesser of two evils’ four years ago, and I’ve regretted it since, with every bill or shredding of civil liberties that Obama has signed into law.

In many ways I think we would be in a better place if the obvious madman Mccain, had come to power 4 years ago, because people would have rallied against his obvious butchering of civil liberties, rather than this death by inches thing that has occurred under the cult of personality, which is the presidency of Obama.

He has been as ‘republican’ a president as you could hope, with all the negative connotations of that word, but his every action has been defended (or ignored) by people who see his labels (Democrat, Black, Liberal) rather than his actions (Republican, Conservative). And Republicans, conservatives become more conservative/republican to keep/enforce this artificial feud (which serves no one but big business), this artificial division of them and us.

So I’m not inclined to be backed into a corner again this year, this year I’m voting for a candidate whose views intrigue me, and whose background and history gives me reason to feel… justified.

Candidates on the ballot or write in candidates not sanctified by big business are few and far between, here are a few such candidates:

GARY JOHNSON– The former republican, and two time Governor of New Mexico, now running under the Libertarian ticket, has me very intrigued for his anti-big business stance, and his history of not raising taxes,

STEWART ALEXANDER
http://stewartalexanderforpresident2012.org/- I’m also intrigued by the ticket of Alexander and Mendoza that is running for the Socialist Party. Their stances on the issues is the about face from the “give big business our first born” dance the American people have been on, though their lack of any documented political experience and lack of endorsements is a bit of a concern. As is the general sub-par nature of their web-site and presentation. But at this point in America’s history, I’ll take the well meaning amateur, over the slick big business approved trained seal… any day.

RON PAUL– I can’t really figure out from day to day if Ron Paul is running or not running for the Presidency, however it’s an impressive site the 75 year old has, and the stances he pays lip service to, you can really get behind. Give it a read, and should his name show up on a ballot, I don’t think anyone would have an argument picking him over Romney or Obama.

So where is the candidate who will do for the people, rather than for big business? Well he may be one of those above, take a look for yourself and decide.

You only have one vote, and despite what any one tells you, it is not wasted if you go against the majority or the ‘sure thing’, it is only wasted if you go against your conscience.

When the record shows that 99.99999999% of the population voted for the lesser of evils or established evils, be not afraid to stand alone as that man or woman who voted out of hope… rather than fear. One of the votes I’m proudest to have cast, was a ‘losing’ vote, was for Ralph Nader. And I’d cast it the same way today, given those same candidates and situations.

I’d cast it for the attempt to make things better, rather than the certainty and fear of keeping them the same.

Here endeth the Lesson

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President Obama: The Summing up Place. Conservatism, Liberalism… and the road yet traveled

The problem I have with President Obama, is not that he lied in his pre-election promises.

To some extent all politicians, slaved to corporate interests lie, it is an unfortunate failing of the American political system that we allow business to have more influence on our politicians than the citenzenry they are supposedly there to serve.

No my issue with Obama, that I hinted at on this blog prior to his election, is the magnitude of his lies.

He rode into office on the hopes and dreams and eloquent quotations, sufferings and civil liberties of the dream of America. Rode into office as an answer to this endless push to war, to the dismantling of liberties, and to the corporate plundering and rape of America, that characterized the Bush administration.

And unfortunately Obama’s administration has been, for all wild mutterings of America’s nazietic wing, has been a continuation of Bush’s policies, which is to say a continuation of corporate America’s policies.

He pays lip service to liberalism, when his policies, laws and edicts since entering office, is conservative to the point of totalitarianism. Granting the FBI and other acronyms of our abuse, unheard of powers to dismantle, without oversight or rule of law or due cause, civil liberties on a frightening scale.

They can shut down websites, the Internet in fact, a kill-switch, with no cause, and no oversight beyond their own. The FBI is allowed to put a tracer, a tracking bug if you will, on any person, any vehicle, at their discretion, with no oversite of law. With no word, but their own. A recent push to make abuse or violation of corporate rules by employees, a federal crime. And the list goes on.

Add to that the continuing rape of the American people, unholy taxation of the American people, financial slavery of generations not yet born, to support businesses unrepentant in their mismanagement and greed, and willingness to sacrifice America as a concept, to advance insane policies of the military-industrial complex, and new middle east pleasure nations, carved out of the bodies of all those we have blown to hell.

So yeah, you can say I’m not happy with the current administration. Obama was the lesser of two evils, but much like Kerry before him, whose race against Bush was a sham, too good old boys staging a fixed fight for the rubes, the wrestling crowd, he was just Bush, repackaged.

Which is to say, he is the talking head of global corporate entities, that love America not.

But what makes Obama’s betrayal, particularly egregious, is it really is a no win situation for him, the way he is currently playing it. He will go down as a traitor to the masses who elected him, and to the interests of people and causes and legacies, that he had the gall in his election bid to invoke, and the gall in his presidency to utterly betray.

And even though he serves well his Bushian corporate masters, following in policy the dismantling of liberties initiated by Bush, he is reviled and hated by the very conservatives that his presidency is clearly supporting. Hated because, he still plays enough lip-service to liberalism, in his color if not in his heart, to elicit a Pavlovian hate, from people who are ignorant of the larger mysteries, and for whom hate is all they have been bred to give.

Obama, if he continues the perilous road he is on, he will be hated by heroes, and he will be hated by the fools he serves. And his presidency will go down as a failure, to shake the very foundations of the empire.

Which is perhaps what it was designed to do all along.

There are those, chairmen of ships of industry, pullers of strings, proponents of slavery, and dismantlers of concepts such as minimum wage, and workers protection, who want very much to be their father’s sons. To be once again undisputed Robber-Barrons and Masters, and make the mass of men serfs and slaves. And all that stands in their way… is this dream called America.

If they can make Americans renounce this dream of liberty and brotherhood, this purposely failed concept of America, they can win, those great things, their fathers lost.

They can win, by extinguishing in the hearts of those who should love it most… even the dream of liberty.

And Obama’s presidency stands poised to give to these men their…New World Order. Their rise of Nazism. We are Germany, being groomed for the coming atrocities, for the rise of a new Hitler, to save us from our failed democracy.

Obama as puppet to corporate masters will serve nothing but his own vilification, and the destruction of his children’s future, all children’s future, and the immolation of 400 years on this continent, long before the constitutional signing, of striving toward a more perfect union.

Obama’s only hope, as President, as Father, as Man, and ultimately as descendant of slaves, is to be in deed the man of his election speeches, to give those who voted for him, his half of the contract. And to give those who hate him for no reason, cause to respect him, and if necessary to fear him.

It is a hard road to walk. But when the choices are liberty or slavery, I will walk the former road, though hell and some such neighbor bar my way, to paraphrase Shakespeare. And Obama is at that point in his presidency where he must choose his road.

As defender of liberty… or its destroyer.