Mission & Name
US Foreign Policy (Dr. El-Najjar's Articles)
The Zionization of American Politics and How It
Could Be Terminated
By Alan Hart
Al-Jazeerah, CCUN, January 9, 2012
Alan Hart maps out a way for the de-Zionization of US
politics: making politicians accountable to those who elect them and not the
big money special interest lobbies through new legislation requiring that
all elections be funded from taxation, with the revenue ring-fenced so that
it could be used only for elections.
The first headline
I thought of for this article was “The Zionization of American democracy and
how it could be terminated”, but then I said to myself: “Don’t be silly,
Alan, there’s no democracy in the ‘Land of the Free’.”
the fact that any American can now be arrested and detained without due
process, there’s no mystery about why.
There’s much more to democracy
than voting every few years for the lesser of two or three evils or in
America’s case naked political whores (with the exception, among the
would-be Republican presidents, of Ron Paul).
A truth is that for
democracy to exist, the voters have to be informed enough about critical
issues in order to participate in, or at least follow, debate about policy
options and choices and call and hold their politicians to account, between
elections if necessary. On that basis I know of no country in the world
where democracy exists.
“A truth about America is that what passes for democracy
there is for sale to the highest lobby bidders, not only (I
must emphasize) the Zionist lobby in all of its
In the so-called democratic or what used to be called the “free world” we
have the framework for democracy but not the substance. When I joined
Britain’s Independent Television News (ITN) as a very young reporter very
many years ago, its great editor-in-chief, Geoffrey Cox, gave me the mission
statement in one short sentence. “Our job is to help keep democracy alive.”
Today I charge the mainstream media with betraying democracy. So I say
thanks for the internet, warts and all. (The jury is still out on how far it
will be allowed to propel Arab demands for democracy but it might assist
Russians to prevent a return to Stalinism under Vladimir Putin and his state
A truth about America is that what passes for democracy there is for sale
to the highest lobby bidders, not only (I must emphasize) the Zionist lobby
in all of its manifestations.
On 9 December, quoting the latest
findings of Public
Campaign, a non-profit, non-partisan organization dedicated to “sweeping
campaign reform that aims to dramatically reduce the role of big special
interest money in American politics,
International Business Times reported this amazing fact.
By employing a plethora of
tax-dodging techniques, 30 multi-million dollar American corporations
expended more money lobbying Congress than they paid in federal income
taxes between 2008 and 2010, ultimately spending approximately 400,000
dollars every day – including weekends – during that three-year period
to lobby lawmakers and influence political elections.
But that’s not all.
Citizens for Tax Justice, the sister organization to the Institute on
Taxation and Economic
Policy, reported that 68 of the 265 most consistently profitable
Fortune 500 companies did not pay a state corporate income tax during
at least one year between 2008 and 2010, while 20 of them paid no taxes at
all during that period.
Top political lobbies
Apart from the occupant of the
White House and those who advise him, probably nobody really knows which are
the most influential lobbies in America, but a
list of the top 10, as compiled by the Business Pundit website,
made a lot of sense to me. The following are the 10, not necessarily in
order of actual influence wielded:
- The defence industry or, as named by President
Dwight Eisenhower when he warned his fellow Americans to be on their
guard and not let it call the policy shots to secure a disproportionate
amount of taxpayers’ money, the military-industrial complex. It needs
conflict and war in order to be able to quench its thirst for taxpayers’
dollars and sustain its position as the biggest creator of jobs and
wealth. (According to a recent report in
the US Department of Defence is the biggest employer in the world with
3.2 million on its payroll, ahead of China’s army with 2.3 million.) The
heaviest hitters in the defence industry are Lockheed Martin, Boeing and
- Big oil which is said to spend more on lobbying
than any other single special interest group – nearly 150 million
dollars in 2010.
- The financial lobby which in its various
manifestations – banks and other financial institutions – is by far the
biggest spender on Capitol Hill, contributing hundreds of millions of
dollars to campaigns and political parties. (In return, and as noted by
Business Pundit, financial institutions are allowed free reign
with other people’s money. A senate committee on the financial crisis of
the late 2000s found that, “The crisis was not a natural disaster, but
the result of high risk, complex financial products; undisclosed
conflicts of interest; and the failure of regulators, the credit rating
agencies, and the market itself to rein in the excesses of Wall
- Big pharma – along with the financial lobbies, the
pharmaceutical and health products industries have historically been one
of the biggest and most powerful lobbies in Washington. Drug companies
enjoy more power and influence in America than with any other government
in the world.
- The agribusiness industry which represents a
diverse collection of special interest groups, including large food
manufacturers like Kraft and Uniliver, huge agricultural companies like
Monsanto, tobacco companies such as Phillip Morris, biofuel producers
like UNICA, and logging companies like International Paper and
Weyerhauser. These companies spend upwards of 150 million dollars each
year, funding campaigns and pushing legislation through Congress or
- The tech lobby which includes the economic fire
power of Google, Apple, Amazon and Microsoft.
- The mining industry – this lobby, particularly the
coal industry, has had its fingers in American politics for a long time.
In the late 19th and early 20th centuries, it was responsible for some
of the most dramatic labour uprisings in history. In the last three
years, in the face scepticism on the part of environmental advocacy
groups, it spent nearly 100 million dollars on seeking to persuade
politicians that “clean coal” really will make a major contribution to
averting an energy supply crisis.
- The NRA (National Rifle Association) – has been one
of the most consistently influential political lobbies in American
politics for the past 30 years. Its power is less in money and more its
ability to mobilize its members. It puts major effort into opposing
candidates who advocate gun control. (Al Gore, for example, lost the
2000 election in his own home state of Tennessee primarily because of
his pro-gun-control stance.)
- The AARP (American Association of Retired Persons)
– is a non-governmental and special interest group for people aged 50
and over and one of the largest lobbying groups in Washington.
Glimmer of hope?
- The pro-Israel lobby which is more accurately
described as the Zionist lobby. As my regular readers know, I
insist that it’s wrong to call this lobby pro-Israel because to do so
implies that it speaks for all Israeli Jews and it does not. Headed by
AIPAC (the American Israel Public Affairs Committee), which speaks for
not more than about 25 per cent of Jewish Americans, it has been called
the NRA of foreign policy lobbies because of its ability to make or
break politicians, including presidents.
The statement that best sums up for me
the consequences of all this financial fire power on America’s political
system was the one made by the man I would like to see as America’s next
president, Rocky Anderson. Who is he?
“The constitution has been eviscerated while Democrats
have stood by with nary a whimper. It is a gutless,
unprincipled party, bought and paid for by the same
interests that buy and pay for the Republican Party.”
Rocky Anderson, US politician and founder of the
On Monday 19 December, at a news conference in Washington DC, he
announced the creation of a new third party, the Justice Party, and his
intention to run for the presidency under its banner.
Just turned 60, Rocky Anderson, a former two-term mayor of Utah’s Salt
Lake City, has an impressive record of service to what could be called the
public good on many fronts. For reasons of space I have to ask readers who
want to know more about him to take a look at his
On 11 August last year he denounced the
Democratic Party and resigned his membership of it. In his letter to the
Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, he said:
Until the Democratic Party
shows some spine and draws a line in the sand – that an end to the tax
breaks for the wealthy needs to be part of any debt/budget bill – please
take my name off your list… I'm done with the Democratic Party. As I
said on Amy Goodman's show a couple years ago, I've put my proud
Democrat coffee mug in storage. I think now I'll just throw it in the
garbage and have done with it... The constitution has been eviscerated
while Democrats have stood by with nary a whimper. It is a gutless,
unprincipled party, bought and paid for by the same interests that buy
and pay for the Republican Party.
I was inspired by Amy Goodman’s interview with Anderson for Open
Democracy very shortly after his announcement of the formation of the
The great thing about television is that it gives
viewers the opportunity not only to listen to what speakers are saying but
also to study their body language as they are speaking and listening to the
questions. In other words, television gives viewers the opportunity to ask
and answer an important question: do I believe this guy or gal? With Tony
Blair, for example, my answer was always “No”. And I regret to say it has
become “No” when I listen to President Barack Obama and watch his body
language. Anderson’s body language told me he is a man I can believe and
that makes what he had to say more than important – even though he has no
chance of becoming president in 2013. (After that...?)
Here is what
he said in answer to one of Goodman’s questions.
We launched the Justice
Party because the entire system is so corrupt. It's so diseased. We know
that the public interest is not being served by anyone in the system
right now, particularly the two dominant parties who have sustained this
corrupt system and who are sustained by it... Obama received more money
from Wall Street than any presidential candidate ever. And they got a
great return on their investment... We need people in public office who
are pledged not to just represent the people's interest in the same
system, but to change the system and get the corrupting influence of
corporate and other concentrated wealth out of our electoral system and
out of our system of governance.
“A real clean-up would require legislation giving effect
to the proposition that all elections will be funded by only
one source: public money raised from taxation, with the
revenue ring-fenced so that it could be used only for
Common sense says that the only way to end the financial corruption of
American politics is by the people, the voters, demanding that it be ended.
A real clean-up would require legislation giving effect to the
proposition that all elections will be funded by only one source: public
money raised from taxation, with the revenue ring-fenced so that it could be
used only for elections. There are about 100 million voters in America and
10 dollars added each year to their tax bill would provide enough money for
all election funding. Ten dollars a year is surely a very small price for
each voter to pay for something approaching real democracy.
that Congress’s approval rating is closer to 10 per cent than 20 per cent
according to the latest polls, organizing a rolling and rising tide of
people power to demand the necessary constitutional amendment or amendments
to get the corrupting influence of lobby funding out of the electoral system
ought not to be a mission impossible.
In other words, if enough
American voters were aware of how corrupt their political system actually
is, and if then they cared enough, they could cause the corruption to be
terminated. What a demonstration of real democracy in action that would be!
In an opinion piece for the
on 27 December, Ilan Pappe wrote the following.
If we had a wish list for
2012 as Palestinians and friends of Palestine, one of the top items
ought to be our hope that we can translate the dramatic shift in recent
years in world public opinion into political action against Israeli
policies on the ground... We know why this has not yet materialized: the
political, intellectual and cultural elites of the West cower (crouch or
cringe in fear) whenever they even contemplate acting according to their
own consciences as well as the wishes of their societies. This last year
was particularly illuminating for me in that respect. I encountered that
timidity at every station in the many trips I took for the cause I
believe in. And these personal experiences were accentuated by the more
general examples of how governments and institutions caved in under
intimidation from Israel and pro-Zionist Jewish organizations.
In Americam Zionist intimidation which causes the “caving in,” manifests
itself in two ways.
One is funding for election campaigns and the
threat, actually the promise, not only to deny funding to candidates who
won’t commit to toeing Zionism’s line but to fund their opponents.
The other is delivery of Zionist-lobby-organized Jewish votes in close
election races. (In a few states that are home to large Jewish populations –
New York, California, Illinois, Pennsylvania, Maryland and Florida – the
Jewish vote can be decisive.)
Once upon a time, when most Jewish
Americans voted for Democratic Party candidates, Republicans running for
office did not bother to grovel for Jewish campaign funds and votes. An
indicator of how times are changing is that in the current race for the
White House, and with the exception of Ron Paul, Republican candidates are
grovelling for Jewish campaign funds and votes as much if not more than
Obama. In that context it can be said that the
Zionization of American politics has been completed.
ever be ended? Yes if enough Americans insist that their politicians be
accountable to those who elect them and not the big money special interest
At the time of writing the signs are that Obama will get a
second term by default, this is because no Republican challenger is credible
to enough Americans. If that is the outcome of November’s election, probably
a majority of Americans will be very far from happy with the way their
electoral system operates; and that discontent might just be enough to cause
them to demand an end to the corruption of the lobby system.
for 2013 and beyond is that they will. (Could it be that Rocky Anderson’s
time will come?)