Saturday, October 4, 2014

US not a democracy, but a ‘firmly entrenched oligarchy’

© Dees Illustrations
Press TV | Oct 4, 2014

A US political commentator has said that Americans should know the United States is not a democracy, but instead “a very firmly entrenched oligarchy” that cannot be simply changed through elections.

In a phone interview with Press TV on Thursday, Daniel Patrick Welch said there are “huge challenges for the [American] people to recognize and come to terms with the fact that this is not a democracy just because we have vote; you can have voting and think you have the illusion of control but it’s still a very firmly entranced oligarchy. This is what we vote for.

“We have ABSOLUTELY no voice in the outcome in terms of formulating policy; that’s all done over the heads of the people,” he added.

“Even someone as mainstream as the former US president, Jimmy Carter, came out and said there was no functioning democracy in the United States,” Welch noted.

He made the remarks while commenting on reports which say there has been a surge in voter registration in the US city of Ferguson since a white police officer shot and killed unarmed African-American teenager Michael Brown in August.

The fatal shooting sparked weeks of violence in Ferguson, a predominantly African-American town of 21,000 people. The violent protests resumed on September 23 after a fire destroyed a memorial dedicated to the slain teenager.

Despite a major African-American population of Ferguson, most of the city’s elected representatives and a vast majority of its police force are white.

“It’s an interesting development that its [Ferguson’s) people are obviously waking up to the fact that they have no control over their community, and what they need to do all over the country is take their community back and push back against this huge wave of police brutality,” Welch said.

He, however, rejected the possibility of change to the US system, saying “the control is… based on white supremacy and that’s not going to go away.”

“I don’t want to say that it’s hopeless, but I do think that it’s important for people to understand that the systemic and structural nature of the racist system that they are up against,” Welch stated. “And that’s something that you are not going to change by electing a few city councils.”

He went on to say that “an elected black president did basically nothing and appointed black attorney general basically did nothing; you know, the congressional black caucus rubber-stamped all of Obama’s wars.”

“So the electoral route is quite limited in terms of what it can produce,” he stated.

“The famous American revolutionary, Lucy Parsons, once said something to the effect that you are deluding yourself if you think the ruling class will allow you to vote away its wealth,” Welch pointed out.

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