The damage that this system inflicts on the interests of the actual human beings in this nation is massive and constant. (I emphasize this because, according to the ultra-conservative Supreme Court, Corporate America now enjoys the same Constitutional benefits as you and I.) In many cases, in fact, the detriment money will cause will become a permanent injury to all Americans.
Wall Street has been giving tens of millions of dollars in direct contributions and soft money from special-interest PACs to both parties, and to Republicans in particular, of course, in order to privatize your Social Security. Why would they spend $15.5 million through their PACs and $37.4 million in soft money over the last decade in order to privatize a system that has worked for nearly fifty years offering a basic level of living to hundreds of millions of Americans? Because the privatization of this system will create a river of money into the security industry's mutual funds and other investment packages, a river consisting of an estimated $60 billion every year.
Will they guarantee that even one cent will remain in these funds when an American retires? No! Will the government make any promises for a fully funded retirement account to any of its citizens? Of course not! Will America be facing a depression when the stock market collapses, a depression that will make the poverty of the Thirties appear to have been a cake walk? You can bet on that! Do you have any input into this all-important issue as an American voter? Absolutely none!
Cutting Medicare by $115 billion by 2002 has become another issue backed by both the Republican Congress and our current Republican President, Bill Clinton, even though it horribly affects the most defenseless Americans, the poor and the elderly. The cuts are necessary, of course, in order to continue the sick welfare program devised by your government for Corporate America. So who's going to design the new Medicare system and who will decide if these cuts are even eventually made? Health insurers and the AMA, of course, due to their nearly $50 million in direct contributions and soft money between 1985 and 1995(newer figures not available). Once again, will you have any say in the future of your health needs? Get serious!
When you get a prescription filled at you local pharmacy, you probably believe that you can acquire that medication in generic form and say yourself and your insurer a chuck of money. As you have already guessed, you will quite possibly be wrong and end up paying far more than you expected. Why? Because the brand-name drug industry has bought the representation they need to continually be granted extensions of their patents for those drugs, barring you from acquiring the drug at the more reasonable price.
An excellent example of this unbelievably overt bribery was the incident of Glaxo Wellcome giving the Republican National Committee $100,000 the day after the Republican Congress granted Glaxo Wellcome a 19 month extension of their patent for its ulcer drug, Zantac.
Soft money donations of $252,275 was all it took in 1996 for the Republican Congress to extend the patent on G.D. Searle & Co.'s anti-inflammatory drug Daypro. This modest investment in bribery will earn them an additional $1 billion over that period.
What has come to be called "dread disease" insurance policies, meant to pay out in the event of cancer or other specific diseases, were once banned by Congress since they were duplications of Medicare and Medigap. In 1994 and again in 1996, the Republican Congress completely watered down these consumer protections, allowing these policies to again be sold and to again allow the insurance industry to rip-off the American public and Medicare recipients, in particular.
AFLAC Inc., the leader in selling these consumer rip-offs, gave only $3 million dollars in PAC and soft money between 1987 and 1996 but reaped a $3 billion windfall in 1996 through the sales of these usually useless policies.
Gentle readers, this shameful list goes on and on, infecting every single issue before the America public, both now and for decades into the future. The environment, safety and health regulations, the trucking and airline industries, the War On Americans Who Use The Wrong Drugs, food safety and purity, education, violence in our schools and on our streets, and every other problem facing us will be addressed not by you and I with our government taking our opinions into account but completely and utterly by the few who long ago bought the entire American government through the legal bribery of campaign contributions, at all levels.
Saddest of all, I suppose, is that you will never hear this momentous obstacle to the lost process of democracy discussed in the major media since every major media outlet, from television to newspapers to radio to magazines and publishing, are owned by the same folks who own your government. Instead, far too many voters will continue to sleep through the day to day horrors of the legislative process, awakening only to vote a straight Republican ticket since the Republican Party has perfected the art of overtly lying to the unthinking and apathetic public while using their Conservative Media to hide the ugliness that they represent. (1)
Want even more information about who has purchased your government and how much they paid? Careful, it isn't a pretty sight in a land supposedly ruled by democracy!
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