[D]emocracy is impossible in a capitalist system. Capitalism is the realm of injustice and a tyranny of the richest against the poorest. Rousseau said, ‘Between the powerful and the weak all freedom is oppressed. Only the rule of law sets you free.’ That’s why the only way to save the world is through socialism, a democratic socialism… [Democracy is not just turning up to vote every five or four years], it’s much more than that, it’s a way of life, it’s giving power to the people… it is not the government of the rich over the people, which is what’s happening in almost all the so-called democratic Western capitalist countries.
Hugo Chávez, June 2010]
I do not know Hugo Chavez personally, but I wondered why Sean Penn kept running down to his side and supporting someone who has aligned himself with America’s sworn enemy (Cuba to be exact). i wondered what was so fascinating about this manthat Sean Penn supported his every move. What did he stand for and why did that conflict with America’s Political Ideology? I came across the above quote while reading about Presidente Chavez’s ideology.
His ideology is called Social Democracy. Social Democracy is defined as a “rejection” of the “either/or” polarization interpretation of capitalism versus socialism. It claims that fostering a progressive evolution of capitalism will gradually result in the evolution of capitalist economy into socialist economy. Social democracy argues that all citizens should be legally entitled to certain social rights. These are made up of universal access to public services such as: education, health care, workers’ compensation, and other services including child care and care for the elderly. Social democracy is connected with the trade union labour movement and supports collective bargaining rights for workers. Contemporary social democracy advocates freedom from discrimination based on differences of: ability/disability, age, ethnicity, gender, language, race, religion, sexual orientation, and social class (Wikipedia, 2012).
Last time I checked and read my pocket U.S. Constitution (yes, I carry a copy in my purse), I interpreted it to mean exactly what Hugo Chavez believes. This Social Democracy is what the 99% of American’s are fighting for right now in 2012! So, I ask you how this ideology conflicts with America? In my UNHUMBLE OPINION it doesn’t! I think it is parallel with the spirit of the America that was found BY THE PEOPLE AND FOR THE PEOPLE! Not BY THE CORPORATION FOR THE CORPORATION! I would agree that capitalism in its current form is no longer working for everyone and changes do need to be made.
How do we get back to the America that upheld the above ideologies?
By researching and VOTING! Voting is a privilege and the ONLY way to send a message to our current government institution that change is needed. My friends and I had a discussion about voting and the importance of voting. I feel if you don’t vote, you DO NOT have the right to complain about the state of the union. If you didn’t exercise your voice and vote, I feel you need to shut up! One of my friends felt voting for a third-party candidate was throwing away a vote. Voting for a third-party candidate is still a vote against the established parties of “Democrat” and “Republican”. To me they are one in the same. Here’s why: when it appears that a candidate may end up on the losing team, they jump ship and switch parties to retain their seat in our legislative body. Do I have proof they do this? No, but I have seen this tactic on the local and state levels.So, I wouldn’t be surprised if this tactic didn’t happen on a national level! I also think the reason behind this kangaroo party jumping is linked to the Congressional pay. The current salary (2011-2012) for rank-and-file members of the House and Senate is $174,000 per year (Longley, 2012; http://usgovinfo.about.com/od/uscongress/a/congresspay.htm). That is more than anyone I know makes in a lifetime. It’s become very lucrative to be a legislator. But you also have to come from money to run for public office. The little people or common American folk can’t afford to quit their hourly wage jobs to run for public office. Which is sad because that is how the power got taken away from the people. The current candidates will spend an estimated $5.8 billion on their race to the Presidency and Congress (Center for Responsive Politics, an independent research group which tracks money in politics-Read more: http://www.bellenews.com/2012/08/02/world/us-news/why-does-the-us-election-cost-so-much/#ixzz22pboVzbs).
I don’t know any regular person with that kind of money. It would take years for someone on the grassroots level to raise that kind of money and by the time they did they would probably have lost interest. So, this brings me back to my point of voting. Voting will bring back America to the people if enough people will get out there and exercise their freedoms and let their voice be heard. We can get back to an America that cares about the people and their Constitutional Rights laid out by our fore-fathers: Government by the people and for the people!