by Alan Simpson
Debates, or News Conferences!
Anyone who thinks the Presidential Debates are anything to do with debating are seriously mistaken. Teams of lawyers from the two establishment parties have destroyed any semblance of debate from the media circus.
In years to come students will ask their tutors why the electorate allowed such muzzling of the democratic process, and why they allowed the two candidates alone to turn a debate into a prime time talent contest.
But hey, the electorate allowed an election to be given to one side, without demanding safeguards for future elections.
They also allowed the travesty of voter fraud under the appointed president's brother to determine the outcome of the election without extensive investigation. And when the electoral officer was rewarded with a seat in Congress, nobody asked questions.
Today the situation with hanging chads and confusing ballots is as bad as ever. Yet the electorate blindly accepts their lot in life.
Then there is the issue of Electoral Finance Reform, which is as corrupt as it ever was, if not worse. The cry by the rich corporations, and Robber Barons that it is their Constitutional Right to spend what they want is Fascism gone wild. It says that only the rich and powerful, drug dealers, swindlers and corporate robbers can make their voices heard, because they can shell out the money to buy air time on TV and Radio.
Instead of laying out an agenda the two candidates have been allowed to get away with months of mud slinging at each other. They have conveniently avoided the embarrassment of having to say "I haven't a clue what to do with Iraq". That suits both of them just fine!
Millions of dollars, in fact well over a Billion dollars has been collected, shuffled and given to make the rich richer, and the poor poorer.
Big media companies have been paid huge transmission fees, ensuring their silence when it comes to reporting embarrassing news. Millions have been given to friendly consultants, pollsters and spin doctors. Party backers have been paid millions in rent for office space, and support services to prepare for the election.
When the questions on the economy, and healthcare started popping up, they were treated like pop up windows on the Internet, and quickly suppressed.
Both candidates, faithful Skull and Bones men, diverted attention to 30 year old gossip, and a long forgotten war.
The last bastion of unscripted debate has been usurped by a flawed committee, and turned into just another rally for the two pet candidates. Nader of course is not establishment and is excluded, the other candidates should just go and try their luck in a democratic country that holds free elections open to all their citizens. How dare they expect the same treatment as these two multi millionaires.
Quite right says the multi-millionaire leaders in Congress, let the common people eat cake and vote as we say.
I'm not a great fan of President Carter when in the White House, but maybe he should declare the whole process undemocratic, corrupt and unconstitutional, and whilst we are reforming the intelligence community for their failures, maybe we can reform the whole election process for theirs.