One Basis for TOSCA

One Basis for TOSCA
by Richard Martin Oxman and The Collective

Special note: Definitive documentation for any statement herein will gladly be provided upon request. I’ve plagiarized much that’s authoritative here. People in “The Collective” cannot be named in public, but that information can be shared in person.

You’ll never hear it in schools or from the mainstream media, but the Founding Fathers hated democracy. Thomas Jefferson was a partial exception, but only partial. For the most part they recoiled in horror at the thought of democracy. This has zero to do with Left or Right on the political spectrum. Or my opinion. It is an indisputable fact.

[What's an example of something that's indisputable, Richard? Oh, like General Electric is in it for profit. Or as in the Pentagon is inextricably bound up with our economy as things stand.]

The principles of the Founding Fathers were rather nicely expressed by John Jay, the head of the Constitutional Convention and the first Chief Justice of the Supreme Court. His favorite maxim was, “The people who own the country ought to govern it” — that’s the principle on which the United States was founded.

The major framer of the Constitution, James Madison, emphasized very clearly in the debates at the Constitutional Convention in 1787 that the whole system must be designed, as he put it, “to protect the minority of the opulent from the majority” — that’s the primary purpose of the government, he said.

Now, Madison had kind of a theory behind that, which was that the “minority of the opulent” would be elevated Enlightenment gentlemen, who would act like some kind of ancient Roman republicans of his imagination — benevolent philosophers who would use their opulence to benefit everybody in the country. But he himself quickly recognized that that was a serious delusion, and within about ten years he was bitterly denouncing what he called the “daring depravity of the times” as the “minority of the opulent” were using their power to smash everyone else in the face.

In fact, still in the eighteenth century, Madison made some insightful comments about the interactions between state power and private power. He said, we’ve designed a system in which the “stock jobbers” (what we would today call investors) are simply using state power for their own ends — we thought we were going to create a system which would protect everyone from the tyranny of the majority, but instead what we’ve got is gangsters in control using state power for their own benefit.

Well, that’s the way the system was originally designed in the United States — and over the next two centuries, that basic design hasn’t changed a lot. The “minority of the opulent,” who share a very definite class interest, still have control of the government institutions, both the parliament and the Executive, while the general population remains highly dispersed, separated*, and as Madison also recommended, fragmented so that people will not be able to unite together to identify and press their interests. And the principle that “The people who own the country ought to govern it” continues to be the dominant feature of American politics.

*Our increasing atomization — to the point where most people think you’re from another planet if you suggest moving in solidarity — absolutely delights the opulent creators of high tech gadgetry (along with the politicians).

Alright, it’s not a very big secret who owns the country: you look at the “Fortune 500″ every year and you figure out pretty well who owns the country. The country is basically owned by a network of conglomerates that control production and investment and banking and so on, and are tightly inter-linked and very highly concentrated — they own the country. And the principle of American democracy is that they also ought to govern it. And to a very large extent — much too much of an extent — they do.

Now whenever you have a concentration of power like that, you can be certain that the people who have the power are going to try to maximize it — and they’re going to maximize it at the expense of others, both in their own country and abroad.

Well, they may have gotten away with it (for understandable reasons) for the last two centuries plus. BUT… the status quo is no longer sustainable. Literally.

Even if we put aside local and international violence for the moment (Which I really do NOT want to do!), and take a look at environmental issues exclusively… it’s obvious that our system of operating is going to… self-destruct. Maximizing short-term profit and encouraging personal aggrandizement in lieu of some sort of communal consciousness which is concerned with long-term effects WILL NOT WORK ANY LONGER. Not that it ever did, but now the sky is truly falling.

I’m absolutely not attached to TOSCA (http://oxtogrind.org/archive/364), but I don’t see anything else on the horizon which has the potential to provide the kind of 9/11-level-shock to the System that’s needed. We desperately need to be working on institutional changes immediately, not band-aid reforms.

And that’s why I want you to get on board with TOSCA ASAP.

Richard can be reached at tosca.2010@yahoo.com. This is what people are assassinated for — suggesting that institutional changes are necessary — but there is no alternative.