Eric Zuesse, originally posted at strategic-culture.org
The best reporting on the depth of America’s dictatorship is probably that being done by Atlanta Georgia’s NBC-affiliated, Gannett-owned, TV Channel “11 Alive,” WXIA television, its “The Investigators” series of local investigative news reports, which show, up close and at a cellularly detailed level, the way things actually work in today’s America. Although it’s only local, it displays what meets the legal standards of the U.S. federal government in actually any state in the union; so, it exposes the character of the U.S. government, such that what’s shown to be true here, meets America’s standard for ‘democracy’, or else the federal government isn’t enforcing federal laws against it (which is the same thing as its meeting the federal government’s standards).
The links to three of these local TV news reports will be provided, along with a summary of each of the videos; and then the broader context will be provided, which ties the local picture in with the national, and then the resulting international, picture. So: this will be like a zoom-lens view, starting with three selected close-ups, and then broadening the view to wide-angle, showing the context in terms of which what’s happening in that fine detail (those close-up views) makes sense.
The central video will be the second of the three, which deals with the impact that the national organization called ALEC plays in creating the entire situation in the U.S., and which ties the Georgia-state reality in with the reality of the U.S. federal government.
Here are the three videos, and their respective summaries:
Georgians are prohibited from seeing Georgia’s laws unless they pay over $300 to buy the lawbooks. (Thus, for example: Georgians get arrested, then charged, then judged, then perhaps imprisoned, according to laws they can’t even so much as see beforehand.)
Georgia’s laws are written in secret by the Kochs’ and other billionaires’ ‘charity’ (like NGOs but operating only within a nation, not internationally) called ALEC (American Legislative Exchange Council), which pays legislators to approve the laws that it writes, and which requires them to pass these laws (or else they’ll lose their legislative seats as being ‘representatives of the people’).
NOTE regarding #2: Perhaps because of the explosive nature of news reporting such as this, that TV station prohibits the Web Archive, web.archive.org, from archiving their investigative reports, but this particular TV report was also recently posted by someone to youtube:
This TV report’s transcript also was once available at another of Gannett’s Georgia TV stations, and that station didn’t block web-archiving, so this transcript, though no longer online, was web-saved and will thus permanently be available there:
Georgians have no way of knowing who or what will be charged to them on their medical bills. Patients who have a medical emergency are especially flying blind into deep indebtedness and possible bankruptcy, over which they’ve got no control.
CONCLUSION & RAMIFICATIONS
This is ‘democracy’ in the nation that dictates to other nations’ governments what they must do in order to be at least minimally acceptable as constituting a ‘democracy.’
Whereas the medical patient (as shown in the third video) has no control over what he or she must pay, and basically (as shown in the first of the three videos) isn’t even allowed to know what the laws are that govern this, the ALEC employee (as shown in the second of the three videos) is allowed to call over an armed “Sheriff’s deputy” who has been standing guard near him, so as now to threaten, perhaps to jail, but certainly to remove from the hotel, the TV station’s reporter, when that reporter has asked one-too-many follow-up questions of that ALEC employee. Not only don’t the operatives who work for the remote and unseen individuals who actually create and shape the laws have no need to explain to the public what they’re doing and how they’re doing it, but the government itself works for them and physically threatens anyone who tries to impede what they’re doing, or who merely tries to report to the public what they are doing. And whereas ALEC’s expenses are tax-deductible to the billionaires who fund it, the reporter and even his employer are fully liable and will have no legal recourse if and when they subsequently become called upon to pay medical bills that might result from their resisting this ‘democratic’ government. Instead of enjoying tax-exemption, the victims — the public — must pay the taxes that fund this government: they must pay for the police, prisons, judges, and lawmakers, that represent not really the public, but instead those remote if not invisible rulers; and this is called ‘democracy’.
Here is the concluding passage from the transcript of the middle video (the second one), where the ALEC agent finally had had enough of the reporter’s questions; this is the passage that ends the middle one of the three videos that are linked-to above:
He signals to the Sheriff’s deputy.
I’m a guest of the hotel sir.
Not for long, not for long.
I’m here – I’m a paying guest of this hotel sir.
We’ll take care of that.
Let me escort you up to your room to get your things.
Did we violate some law or something? I mean, are we violating a law here? …
WXIA Reporters say they filed half a dozen open records requests with Georgia legislators including the speaker of the house – asking for receipts and reimbursements to alec events – but had their requests denied because the general assembly exempted themselves from the Georgia Open Records law.
This, then, is the reality in the nation that now is trying to impose upon the entire world the same corporate type of government that already exists in America. This is what, in the West, is now the reality of its ‘democracy’. It is Newspeak ‘democracy’, not what used to be called “democracy.”
And, so, it was with remarkable honesty, courage, and frankness, that the best-known living Georgian, America’s former President Jimmy Carter, said recently of the U.S. government:
Now it’s just an oligarchy with unlimited political bribery being the essence of getting the nominations for president or being elected president. And the same thing applies to governors, and U.S. Senators and congress members. So, now we’ve just seen a subversion of our political system as a payoff to major contributors, who want and expect, and sometimes get, favors for themselves after the election is over. … At the present time the incumbents, Democrats and Republicans, look upon this unlimited money as a great benefit to themselves. Somebody that is already in Congress has a great deal more to sell.
And that’s what we just now saw in practice at the state level, in that middle video.
Former President Carter was describing there the ‘democracy’ that now presents itself to the global public as being the model that the entire world must copy — or else!
According to this government, the nations that resist, do it because they are “corrupt” and “not democracies.” America, and NATO, and its allies (including Saudi Arabia etc.?), demand to be obeyed, on that basis — as being the world’s opponents of corruption and of dictatorship. For this, their enemy nations (e.g., Iraq, Libya, Syria, and — via a coup in February 2014 — Ukraine) are being invaded, to impose compliant governments: millions are killed, and tens of millions are forced to flee and become unwanted refugees. And America and its allies then blame other nations, especially Russia (their favorite bogeyman), for that. By contrast, ‘the West’ is supposed to stand for clean government, ‘transparency’, and ‘democracy’.
So: how corrupt is America? It’s become corrupt enough to threaten to take over the entire world. And, perhaps soon after the NATO Summit on 8-9 July, we’ll know whether or not the national aristocracies that are subordinate to the U.S. aristocracy, are, indeed, willing to join the American aristocracy’s willingness to use nuclear weapons to achieve the objective.
Investigative historian Eric Zuesse is the author, most recently, of They’re Not Even Close: The Democratic vs. Republican Economic Records, 1910-2010, and of CHRIST’S VENTRILOQUISTS: The Event that Created Christianity.