This is the personal blog of Rick Staggenborg, MD. The opinions expressed here do not necessarily reflect the official positions of Take Back America for the People, an educational 501.c3 nonprofit established by Dr Staggenborg.

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Monday, July 1, 2013


Those of us who long ago realized that human civilization itself is on the brink of collapse should take note of the mass protests in Brazil, Turkey and Egypt that are actually having an effect on governments. Having begun to make progress in gaining liberty and economic justice within living memory, they value them more deeply and are prepared to fight for the right to continue to create more just nations.  This willingness to combat forces many would have viewed as undefeatable before the Arab Spring and the global Occupy movement gave them hope, they are showing the peoples of nations around the planet that a new world is possible.

Citizens of Western nations are failing to respond adequately to the threat to the economic, social and environmental destruction that will devastate human civilization. They have not yet realized the urgency of finding a way to use the power of our vastly superior numbers to seize power from the few who would enslave the many in a cycle of endless war, increasing economic inequality, mass starvation, pandemic, loss of basic human freedom and dignity and ultimately, the destruction of the environment that sustains us all. The protests in Greece, Spain, Italy, Bulgaria and Canada among others have not produced real change, leading many to conclude that the grip on the power over government held by the global elite is too strong to be broken, so have given up trying. If we feel any sense of responsibility to our children, we must reject this self-defeating attitude and do all that we can to end the enslavement of the vast majority of Mankind in what is rapidly becoming a fascist New World Order. Resistance is not futile. We can crush the corporatocracy, but the world revolution will begin only when we accept that it is not only possible but imperative.

Whenever the subject of mass revolt is brought up in the United States, one hears a chorus of familiar excuses for why it cannot be done. This is a self-fulfilling prophecy that has led to the US going from having the highest standard of living in the world to being a nation with economic inequality greater than the United Kingdom, from which the people who created the US separated so that they might not be subjugated by a nation long corrupted by the depredations of an economic aristocracy. If Americans can awaken to their collective power they can take back America for the People and create a democracy that will then spread naturally throughout the world. Only when injustice is resisted everywhere will it be possible anywhere. The task may seem unattainable, but the difference between the impossible and the merely improbable is the will to do the hard work that makes the improbable possible.

Though few realize it, poverty in the US is at record numbers. Americans remain ignorant of the fact because it is obscured behind government statistics that few understand. The majority who get the information that is the basis for their political thinking from a media that has become presstitutes for the government and the plutocrats it represents. The official poverty line is $11,000 for an individual and $23,000 for a family of four. Using the more realistic figure of $17,000 as the poverty line for individuals, fully one third of Americans are poor, more than half of them children. It is clear that the Puppets in Washington have decided that the era of shared prosperity for Americans is over.  It is up to average Americans, with the support of others who are suffering from the actions of their corporate-controlled government, to show that we demand a new era of social and economic justice.

The Puppetmasters of Washington have made clear they have no intention of tolerating the sharing of their wealth produced by workers and expropriated by them. The mass of Americans are falling into poverty as the American economy descends into a self-destructive spiral must organize and united to force them to relinquish the power over us that we have given them, despite decades of growing complacency and ignorance born of affluence. Today’s economy is built on financial transactions that amount to a rigged game of Monopoly, where the .1 percent are gaining not only at the expense of the poor, but even the 1 percent. After all, there is only one winner in that game. Of the 90% of wealth that has gone to the top one percent in the last 10 years, the vast majority has gone to those at the very top who are the real rulers of America, through their ability to pick who Americans are allowed to represent them in Congress and the White House. With the right message, it is possible that we may even get the support of the majority of the one percent who do not yet realize the true nature of their self-interest.

Americans are well aware that millions of Greeks, Spaniards and Italians have taken to the streets, if only sporadically. They realize they are protesting austerity measures designed to destroy the welfare states that protected average Europeans from the worst excesses of capitalism and assured a decent standard of living for every one willing to work and those who could not do so. They were shocked to learn about 25% unemployment rates in Spain and 50% of youth unemployment, never realizing that the real rate of unemployment in the US is over 40%. That statistic is masked by Obama’s triumphant proclamation that the official rate has dropped to “only” 7.5%. Even though most know that figure does not include those who have given up seeking jobs in the new economy, few realize that the shrinking middle class has created a lower class that is growing in numbers and potential power. One of the advantages of knowing that you have no hope for employment is that it frees time to join in mass protest, as Occupy showed. The problem is that Occupiers stubbornly resisted prioritizing objectives. Anyone with military experience would realize that we cannot win this class war without a strategy that leads to clear objectives. Brilliant tactics are meaningless if not based on objectives developed with a clear strategy in mind.

The greatest virtue of Occupy is that it raised the consciousness of Americans that the only real democracy is direct democracy. The greatest danger it presented is that in failing to lead to a growing, sustained movement, most will conclude that democracy is not possible. The truth is that it is possible if Americans can learn to understand that there is more to democracy than the ability to speak and vote on collective decisions. However, it will take a new willingness to listen to those who are focused on a strategy to peacefully overthrow the existing political and economic order by creating a mass movement, one that is international is scope, organization and strategy. It must include those in other nations who have already taken up the struggle for freedom. They need the support of Americans willing to put pressure on their government to act in the interests of all rather than the few on whose behalf they feel they owe their positions of power and privilege. If they realize that their real interest is served only in working on behalf of average Americans, we will have at least a Republic, one in which government represents the People.  Such a government would stop wasting national resources on wars that serve only the corporate interests. The entire world would then be free to reorganize itself into a stable society.

The task then in creating an international front against fascism and war will most importantly depend on a change in the collective consciousness of Americans. While only part of a general global awakening to the fact that we need not submit to slavery if we can work together to end it, it is the most critical component. Americans, and to a lesser extent those in other highly developed nations, have to awaken to their collective power and the urgent need to exercise it. It is citizens of these nations whose representatives in government are the chief builders of a New World Order. That structure is designed to accommodate the whims of the global economic elite who are its architects.

The citizens of NATO nations that have known only relative prosperity for generations have the most to learn about the reality of deprivation. When the majority come to understand the need to consider the good of all if democracy is ever to be more than an illusion promulgated by the rich to keep the rest of them complacent, democracy will be possible. As long as they play defense within the existing political order, they are bound to be defeated. It is only in becoming part of a movement that stretches beyond international borders to fight for liberty and justice for all that they will become responsible citizens of a planet fit to pass on to their children.

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