koshersalaami

koshersalaami
Birthday
October 01
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Male, Jewish, in my fifties, married with kids (well, at this point I guess that should be "kid"). Thanks to Lezlie for avatar artwork - sort of a translation of my screen name. "Salaam" is peace in Arabic, hence the peace sign. (No, my name doesn't mean "hunk of meat" and yes, the pun is intentional.)

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Salon.com
JUNE 2, 2012 12:58AM

Repost: Running For Congress with a New Third Party

Rate: 11 Flag

 

This was originally posted on Nov. 7, 2010 as a piece of satire. At this point, it seems uncomfortably on target. What I didn't expect at the time was how well this would not only describe Republicans but a lot of Democrats, in some respects including our President. This party might not be successful today because the existing parties already fill way too much of its chosen role.

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The following is an interview with future Congressional candidate I. M. Peid, self-proclaimed Architect of the New Political Order and founder of the Corporatist Party of America, or CPA.

What is the point of the Corporatist Party of America? 

What's good for General Motors is good for America. We represent corporations and that's it.

Why?

Two reasons, really. The first is that that's the way the country operates anyway, particularly since the recent Supreme Court decision. Campaigns are expensive. The only people who can really underwrite them are corporations, so we might as well just go straight to the source and stop playing games.

The second is that we need jobs and corporations are where the jobs are.

What will you tell individual constituents?

The truth: That we don't regard them as our constituents; we regard their employers as our constituents.

You sound just like the Republicans, though perhaps more truthful. How aren't you just Republicans?

We don't bother with the Mom and Apple Pie crap. We're about money, not ideology that most people don't really buy into anyway.

What is the CPA's stand on abortion?

We don't bother with one - abortions aren't really a money or corporate issue. Sure, if a corporate board member knocks up some sweet young thing, it will be a serious pain to fly someone to the Caymans or somewhere to take care of business, but we're not going to base a part of our platform on the consequences of an occasional indiscretion.

What is the CPA's stand on gay rights?

Individual corporations will continue to provide partner benefits for employees, a phenomenon that will probably grow, because it makes business sense to keep your employees happy. However, we don't support gay rights legislation because it would mean that those corporations that don't support their gay employees would be vulnerable to lawsuits and lawsuits cost money. In other words, on this issue we're Pro Choice: corporations should have a choice as to how tolerant they are.

What issue stands are driven by representing corporations?

Aside from individual cases involving helping out specific industries (like banking, oil, and pharmaceuticals), we're in favor of privatizing as much as possible, regulating as little as possible and taxing as little as possible.

Do you set limits on privatization? What about the military?

We'd probably keep the military around because fat juicy federal contracts have to come from somewhere.

Really, though, privatization of the military is already well under way. Who do you think Halliburton and Blackwater are?

What's your stand on Don't Ask, Don't Tell?

That it's irrelevant and one of the reasons we're not Republicans. They're way too obsessed with all that morality stuff.

As corporations take over military functions, they aren't going to care about who's gay, as long as they can shoot straight.

Speaking of "all that morality stuff," what's the CPA's stand on separation of church and state?

We worship the Almighty Dollar. If that form of worship gets us the same tax deductions that churches get, we're not in favor of separation.

But seriously, we actually are in favor of separation because religion gets people way too excited about stuff that has nothing to do with money and it gets in the way. Sometimes it's just annoying, like all that crap about the Founding Fathers being devout Christians. I mean Christ, don't these guys know anything about history? The Founding Fathers were, first and foremost, business people. The Revolution happened because the British government told us who we couldn't trade with and taxed us too heavily. They learned about Americans the hard way: You don't f*ck with our money. That was true then and it's true now.

Then there's this creationism in the schools crap. The last thing we need is a generation of kids who don't trust research. That would make us uncompetitive awfully fast. We like the GOP but sometimes those guys have their heads up their asses.

What's the CPA stand on illegal immigration?

What, are you on crack? The cheaper labor is, the happier we are. Plus we tend to love labor sources that don't unionize.

Like everything else, illegal immigration is a matter of supply and demand. If the country really wanted to slow it down, we'd attack both supply and demand, but we don't. Both political parties have been helpful on this. The Republicans have done a good job of focusing so much attention on the supply side that we don't bother prosecuting companies that hire illegals. The downside with them is that they focus so much attention on the issue to begin with. The Democrats have worried about protecting illegals from abuse, giving them more incentive to come here.

What is your stand on taking care of the poor?

That's why God created the United Way. It seems to me that just about every kid in this country has access to a free education. If you work and make good grades, you have a shot at a good job. The opportunity is there; it isn't the rest of the country's fault if you screwed around in school.

If corporations were taxed less, they'd donate more. That's a pretty simple equation.

What is the CPA stand on the death penalty?

As the penal system privatizes, life imprisonment will become profitable. It's harder to charge dead people for services.

Don't you think corporations are often guilty of unethically exploiting legal loopholes?

Corporations exploit legal loopholes because the laws don't make sense to begin with. Think about it: Why should any American corporation have to go through the trouble of putting their headquarters offshore or sailing an American cargo ship under a Liberian flag? We're Americans. This bullshit is a pain in the ass. If you want it to stop, stop incentivising it.

Third parties have a history of failure in the United States. What makes yours any different?

Sweetie, think for a minute. If I approach the board of directors of a major corporation for a campaign contribution, they're going to ask me why they should contribute to me. When they hear me say that my party's main issue stand is to follow the instructions of our corporate donors, how do you think they'll react? I'll get a contribution. I'm not saying they won't hedge their bets and spread their money around, but I'll get a piece of it. If a few CPA candidates manage to get elected, once corporations find that we actually mean what we say, a whole lot more corporations will be on board for the next election cycle, a number which will increase exponentially every cycle. After three to five cycles, game over.

As that blond Aryan kid sings in the movies, tomorrow belongs to me.

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Comments

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Good post. Interesting and provoking. Actually,
very provoking and very interesting.
You forgot to mention the CPA's stance on bipartisan compromise, or as they CPAs call it "ethical mergers".
Should be widely read. You are prescient. R.
I hadn't discovered you when you posted this the first time, I guess. Excellent job of creating a dialogue that will never happen otherwise. And you are right -- it's not far off from the reality of 2012!

Lezlie
Amy,
The CPA is not opposed to bipartisan compromise the way the Tea Party is. These guys are far more pragmatic than ideological on most things. That being said, I think the Wall Street branch of the Republican Party thinks of themselves essentially as CPAers, though they really aren't because they're more ideological than they think.

Ande,
Thank you. I reposted primarily for my more recent readers, like you.

Lezlie,
Chances are you've forgotten. You're one of a couple of people who I think has read everything I've ever posted on OS. Jonathan is the other. Scanner's close and may actually be a third.

This gives me an idea:
I'm thinking about my first Open Call. It would go something like this:

Not everyone who follows you has followed you since you got here. Which of your old posts do you wish your newer readers knew about? Give us the links, and short descriptions, of five of your older posts that you're particularly proud of. (The number is negotiable. So is the age - older than a year? Six months?)
When I was a law clerk in the insurance industry, a memo was floating around about whether or not the industry should encourage women who are pregnant with disabled children to abort, through the utilization of positive reinforcement mechanisms, such as cash bonuses and premium reductions.

The thing is, families with disabled children cost private insurers hundreds of thousands, if not millions of dollars every year. The company was wondering if it was a good idea to encourage women to take certain tests ahead of time, so as to find out if the fetus would become a disabled baby, once born.

The company was thinking about considering this a "pre-existing" condition, once the family was armed with this knowledge. And if this failed, legally speaking, at least using carrot and stick methods to encourage abortion so as to save the company money.

Even for hyper-capitalists, abortion is an issue, particularly when it coincides with health care for the disabled.

r
Jeez, I kept imagining Obama saying the words when I read this. (The Republicans dont get much press here (when they're not in power), so I actually dont know how any of them speak.) But policy wise, I can see both fronts being equally likely to fit in here. Scary.
Icyhighs,
When I wrote this, it wasn't quite as obvious that Democrats were doing this to this extent. Republicans are like this but with a lot more anger thrown in and also frequently a lot of crazy fundamentalism.

Rw,
Not for most industries. And yes, if being disabled at birth were a pre-existing condition, no one would be able to afford it. I'm afraid I'm in a position to know.
Missed this the first time around. Glad you reposted it. And Rw's comment along with this point really gives pause.
r./
Ouch. So true.

Of course, the tragedy is that corporations do not need a third party. They have two parties already.
Karen,
That's the real difference between when I wrote this and now - it's more obvious now.
They got my vote. But, I'll need a few bucks to tide me over until the election, wink, wink!
yet we still prostitute ourselves to big industry. Where is the solution?
Scanner,
yup

Dianne,
Speaking as me and not as my character, the answer takes a while. The best I can do is an answer I just gave to Karen McKim over on her blog. It was long enough that I may make a post out of it.
Shades of Orwellian prognostication, Kosh.
Very wisely aimed to change minds.
R
Poor Woman,
I hope so. What isn't included here is the economic argument against this guy. There's a very important one. People tend to look at this thinking in terms of political consequences but not in terms of long-term effects on GDP, which is actually very negative.
When I wrote this it was kind of comic. Now it's just too damned close.