This happened with,
Each President has elaborated a style in order
to ingratiate himself with the public while pursuing his reactionary agenda.
However, not all play acting is the same: each
President’s ‘populist’ style in defense of oligarchic interests has its
His campaign projected a soft-spoken, conciliatory President from humble roots reaching out to the anti-war electorate and solemnly pledging to uphold human rights against domestic militarists and their overseas despotic allies.
To that end, he appointed a liberal human rights
advocate Pat Derian to the State Department and a veteran Cold
Brzezinski, as National
Security Advisor and foreign policy strategist.
As the Sandinista revolution advanced toward victory, Carter convoked a meeting of Latin American leaders urging them to join in a joint military intervention with the US to ‘save lives’ and to prevent the popular Nicaraguan revolution from taking power and dismantling the dictator’s army.
It soon became clear to the leaders of Latin America that Carter’s mission was a thinly-veiled ‘humanitarian’ version of ‘gunboat diplomacy’ and they declined.
When Carter realized that, without the fig leaf
of Latin American participation, a US-led invasion would arouse universal
opposition, he abandoned the project. The political climate would not
support a unilateral US invasion so soon after the end of the war in
Carter became our founding father of the double
discourse: a con man that publically condemned the jailing and torture by
Pinochet of political opponents in Chile while orchestrating what would
become a decade-long blood bath in Afghanistan with millions of victims.
Reagan was and remained a disciplined and hardened backer of policies designed to concentrate wealth while smashing unions, even as he entertained the flag-waving hard hat construction workers with his jokes about ‘limousine liberals’ and Cadillac welfare queens.
The knowing wink and clever two-liners were matched by an adaptation of morality tales from his cowboy films.
Reagan, in his role as ‘the righteous sheriff’,
backed the mercenary contras as they invaded Nicaragua and destroyed schools
and clinics and the genocidal military dictators in El Salvador and
Guatemala who murdered hundreds of thousands of Indians and peasants.
His tales resonated with mass audiences familiar with the racist Hollywood cowboy film version of unshaven Mexican bandits crossing the ‘ US ’ border.
The clean-shaven, straight-talking, ‘stand-up
for America’ President Ronald Reagan was elected and re-elected by a
resounding majority in the midst of CIA-backed mujahedeen victories over the
government and secular civil structure of Afghanistan, Pentagon- supported
Israeli slaughter of Palestinian refugees in their camps in Lebanon and the
mass genocide of scores of thousands of indigenous villagers in Guatemala.
In defending the brutal dictator of Guatemala,
Reagan replaced Carter’s sanctimonious phrasing in favor of down-to-earth
macho talk of a no-nonsense sheriff.
West Germany annexed East Germany. And a
predator-gangster oligarchy in Russia seized over a trillion dollars of
public assets, impoverishing millions and laundered the illicit funds via
elaborate banking operations on Wall Street and in London and Tel Aviv.
‘Poppy’ Bush believed the US could impose its will by force anywhere and at any time without fear of retaliation.
He believed he was heir to a new imperial order of free markets, free elections and unrestrained plunder. The first war he would launch would be in the Middle East - the invasion, massive bombing and destruction of Iraq.
It was followed by an unprecedented expansion of NATO bases in the countries of Eastern Europe. The spread of neo-liberalism led to the naked pillage of public assets throughout Latin American and Eastern Europe.
The Empire ruled the Muslim world through an arc
of client dictators from Tunisia, Egypt, and Saudi Arabia to Pakistan.
Bush’s personal rigidity and lack of
theatricality prevented him from playing the con-man - unlike his
predecessor, the actor Reagan. Even as he extolled the prowess of the US
military, his career as an ‘insider’ corporate operative and CIA director
did not provide him with the demagogic skills necessary for a successful
Deception and demagoguery are crucial elements
in a re-election campaign - and so Bush, Sr. gave way for the next
Presidential con-man-in-chief, Bill Clinton.
With his folksy Arkansas intonations he preached messages of hope in black churches while diligently applying the free-market lessons he had learned from his Wall Street mentors.
Tooting the saxophone and oozing compassion, Clinton told the poor that he could ‘feel their pain’, while inflicting misery on single mothers forced to leave their children and take minimum-wage jobs in order to retain any public assistance.
He joined hands with labor union bosses at Labor Day festivities, while fast-tracking job-killing free-trade treaties (like NAFTA) that devastated the American working class.
Bill Clinton enthusiastically sent bombers over Belgrade and other Yugoslav cities for several weeks, destroying its factories, hospitals, schools, power plants, radio and TV stations and bridges, as well as the Chinese Embassy, in support of the terrorist Kosovo Liberation Army and its separatist war against Belgrade.
Clinton bombed civilians and their vital infrastructure, a war crime in the name of ‘humanitarian intervention’, to the ecstatic cheers of many Western liberals, progressives, social democrats and not a few Marxists as well as many Jihadists.
On the home front, this self-proclaimed ‘people’s candidate’ ripped to shreds all restraints on banking speculation by repealing the Glass-Steagall Act of 1933, New Deal legislation enacted to protect against massive banking swindles.
This opened the floodgates to massive financial
manipulation, which destroyed the pensions of many millions of workers.
Bill Clinton’s stand-up comic performances in black churches, his back slapping encounters with labor bureaucrats and his embrace of feminists and others just raised the rhetorical bar for future aspiring Wall Street warlords in the White House.
It would take eight years and the election of
Barack Hussein Obama to finally surpass Bill Clinton as Con-Man-In Chief.
He virtually eliminated taxes on billionaires while overseeing the geometrical growth of the domestic police state apparatus; and he unleashed the biggest speculative bubble and crash since the Great Depression.
He lowered the living standards for all
Americans except the top 10% of the population - and despite these disasters
and despite his lack-luster performance as a con-man, he was re-elected.
His ‘just-folks’ grammatical mistakes may have
been mocked by the liberals but they resonated deeply with fundamentalist
Christians - who would never have recognized the Phillips Exeter
Skull and Bones boy in their Commander-in
His silly ‘Mission Accomplished’ claim that the Iraq war had been won in the first months after the invasion was rudely corrected by the huge outbreak of Iraqi resistance against the occupier.
Bush handed over foreign policymaking, especially pertaining to the Middle East, to a small army of Jewish Zionists, aided and abetted by notorious militarists, like Cheney and Rumsfeld.
Most major political events were handled by his Cabinet thugs - Secretary of State Colin Powell shamelessly fabricated the ‘evidence’ of Saddam Hussein’s weapons of mass destruction in his performance before the United Nations.
...trumpeted the ‘global war on terror’ while,
...conducted a domestic war against the Bill of Rights and US Constitutional freedoms, defending torture, jailing thousands of Muslims, punishing businesses trading with Iran and labeling US opponents of Israel’s war crimes as ‘security threats’.
Bush, Jr. just nodded his approval, letting the “big fellas have a piece of the action”.
With Junior, there was no peace demagoguery just plain talk to plain folks and,
Bush did not have to go preaching to black churches (he had a black Secretary of State and National Security Adviser to do his dirty work without the cant); Bush never claimed that Israel got the ‘bum rap’ when it was charged with genocidal crimes.
Under Bush, Jr., war criminals did not have to
‘sugar-coat’ their crimes. While occupying the White House, Bush signed off
on the multi-trillion-dollar bailout for Wall Street and then just went off
to tend his cows and chop wood at the Texas ranch.
As the endless wars dragged on, as the stock market flopped under its own fraud and manipulation and the increasingly repressive legislation provoked debate, Bush just shrugged his shoulders and finished out his term in office without flourish or fanfare:
Barack Obama - The Master of
He spoke passionately against torture while consulting with the torturers; he condemned Wall Street speculators while appointing key Street operatives as economic advisers.
He promised a new deal in the Middle East, especially for Palestinians and then appointed a dual citizen, Israeli-US, Rahm Emmanuel (son of an Israeli Irgun terrorist) to be his most intimate Presidential advisor.
Honolulu born and bred, Barack modulated his
voice according to the audience, adopting a Baptist minister’s cadence for
the black audiences while assuming the professorial tone of an Ivy League
lawyer for his Wall Street contributors.
They had chosen to disregard the fact that
Barack Obama’s key advisers were rabid militarists, big bankers, corporate
CEO’s, die-hard Zionists and Wall Street manipulators.
Here was the man who promised to end the wars, close the torture concentration camp in Guantanamo, bring Wall Street to heel, repeal the Patriot Act and restore the Bill of Rights.
And he was ‘their guy’ - shooting hoops in an urban playground - something Bush had never done! In truth, Barack Hussein Obama did a lot that Bush never dared to do - he surpassed Bush by far in committing war crimes against humanity - pushing for more military adventures abroad and police state repression at home.
He exceeded by far any President in US history in assuming dictatorial police powers, in waging multiple wars while directing the massive transfer of state revenues to Wall Street bankers.
President Obama, hands down, will be regarded as the greatest con-man President in American history.
The Carters, Reagans and Clintons all pale in comparison:
It is President Obama’s hollow eloquence that raised the hopes of millions at home and abroad only to condemn them to an inferno of endless wars.
It is the perversity of his rhetoric which attracts the Latino vote with promises of immigrant citizenship while his policy has been fill detention centers with hundreds of thousands of immigrant workers and their families.
His soaring rhetoric promising justice for
Muslims in Cairo was followed by the bloody bombing of Tripoli, the torture
and slaughter of the Libyan patriot President Kaddafi; the broken promises
to the Palestinians contrasts with the embrace of the bloody Israeli
Soaring moral and ethical pronouncements accompany Obama’s arming and praising the 40,000 Muslim fundamentalist mercenaries sent to degrade and shatter the secular Syrian state.
The pretexts for mass killing fall from his lips like maggots on a rotten corpse:
Obama’s rhetoric converts executioners into
victims and victims into executioners.
Obama ‘defended social security’ by raising the age of retirement, ensuring that hundreds of thousands of workers in hazardous occupations would die before ever receiving any benefits after a lifetime of obligatory contributions.
Obama solemnly promised to defend Medicare and
then proposed to reduce its budget by a trillion dollars over a decade.
The boy’s alleged crime was blasphemy.
The murdered teen has joined the scores of
thousands of Syrians killed and the hundreds of thousands who will join
them, as Obama has decided to openly arm the mercenaries.
Obama believes that his own ‘personal magic’
will blind the Chinese to the fact that China is being encircled by US air
and maritime bases. He seems to believe that the Chinese will ignore his
efforts to forge US-centered trade pacts which specifically exclude China.
In fact, Obama has been playing the role of a
street hustler living off the earnings and lives of his people while handing
them over to his corporate bosses and pimps for Israel.
Obama, the first ‘Afro-American President’, has bombed and intervened in more African countries, backing mercenary armies in Libya and Somalia and establishing more military bases throughout the black continent than the last five ‘white’ Presidents…
So much for the self-proclaimed “historic
breakthrough of a Black President ending centuries of racism”.
Obama exploited the mass revulsion of the American people, longing for change.
His soaring rhetoric and vacuous promise of
‘change’ attracted millions of young activists… The problem is that in their
enthusiasm and blind adherence to ‘identity politics’ with its claims that
all ‘blacks’ and ‘women’ are oppressed and therefore guaranteed to promote
peace and justice - facilitated Obama’s con-game and political hustle.
Barack Obama conned the Democratic Party
Congressional liberals and they, in turn, conned their constituents into
supporting this fraud.
Barack Obama’s multiple endless wars and interventions are destroying vast cities, infrastructure, entire cultures while and killing and impoverishing millions of people from Libya to Palestine, from Syria to Iran.
The economic sanctions against Iran, the
provocative encirclement and isolation of China, and the campaign to
destabilize Venezuela are the centerpieces of Obama’s ‘pivot to empire’.
These policies portend even greater world-shattering catastrophes.
The politics of deception and demagogy thrives by directing popular attention to style and rhetoric, not substance. The solemn and pious cant of ‘Jimmy’ Carter distracted from his launch of the rabid Jihadists against the secular administration of Afghanistan. Uncle Ronald Reagan’s geniality and populist TV patter covered-up his blood baths in Central America and mass firing of the unionized air controllers and jailing of union leaders.
‘Bill’ Clinton’s show of empathy for the poor and embrace of ‘feel-good’ politics neutralized opposition as he bombed Yugoslavia into a pre-industrial age while his domestic policies kicked vulnerable single mothers from welfare programs.
They all paled before the grand con-master
Obama, billed as the ‘first black’ President, a community organizer (who
disowned his sponsor into the black communities of Chicago, Rev. Wright, for
his anti-war, anti-imperial stand) has capitalized on his racial credentials
to garner the vote of guilty-ridden, soft-headed liberals and marginalized
blacks in order to serve the interests of Wall Street and Israel.
The decisive criteria need to be class politics that are defined by fundamental class alignments, between capital and labor regarding budgets, income, taxes, social spending, financing and property rights.
‘Shooting hoops’ in ghetto playgrounds is a
con-man’s distraction while his budget cuts close hospitals and schools in
black and poor neighborhoods.