Declaration of Independence
This declaration does not advocate for the violent overthrow of the United States government rather it demands our representatives, courts, and president serve the people and the nation by observing the Constitution, the Bill of Rights, and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, for which they were a signatory, and protect the people’s rights as citizens, workers, and human beings against the traitorous plutocrats, with the aid of venal politicians and the complicity of government officials, as they destroy the nation and the environment upon which all life depends.
When, in the course of human events, it becomes necessary for people who earn their living through hands-on, non-inherited, non-investment means to free themselves from the political and economic oppression and predation of banks, multinational corporations, vulture capitalists, corporate executives, hedge funds, and others, duly supported and protected by a managerial and political class, and a police and surveillance state; which the laws of human nature entitle them, a decent respect of facts requires that they should declare that which impels them to a more just, healthy, peaceful, mature, and sustainable life.
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all humans regardless of sex, ethnicity, class, age, disability, or sexual orientation are created equal, that although all people are endowed with an unalienable nature that strives for life, liberty, freedom from exploitation and coercion, peace, health, integrity, joy, love, the pursuit of happiness, or better put contentment, as attained in a community of people, and justice, they have since time immemorial been unable to meet these needs due to oppression or circumstance beyond their control whether of class, sex, age, war, exploitation, or other cause; thus, to better secure these needs, governments are instituted amongst people, deriving their just power from the consent and the participation of the governed so long as their rights as both citizens and workers as elaborated on in Bill of Rights and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights are protected.
That whenever any form of government fails to protect these rights, which hinders the people’s ability to meet their needs as human beings, it is the right of the people to alter or abolish it, and to institute new government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its power in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to affect their ability to live a more sustainable, just, materially sufficient, dignified, and peaceful life.
Prudence, indeed, will dictate that governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shown that even though human beings try to avoid pain, they are more often disposed to suffer under circumstances beyond their control, by succumbing to fear and ignorance that drive many to substance abuse, neglect, and other unseemly behavior, and ultimately indifference or misguided rage, than to right themselves by changing the political and economic systems in which they have become accustomed and oppressed.
But when a long train of abuses, and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same objective evinces a design to reduce all except the most affluent and their minions in the rank under absolute despotism and drive them to such poverty of will and financial means that they either become physically and emotionally exhausted or so alienated as to be incapable of protecting the most fundamental rights and human dignity granted them as citizens, workers, and human beings including: to vote, to peacefully assemble, to redress grievances and petition, to receive a speedy jury trial of impartial peers, to speak freely and critically about foreign and economic policy, to be educated, to be secure in personal possessions, to be free of cruel and unusual punishment, to be free from surveillance, to assemble and organize to check the excesses and traitorous machinations of business and government, to be free and active participants in life and the community, it becomes the people’s right; nay, their duty to rise above circumstance--whether due to fear, ignorance, exhaustion, exploitation, or alienation--and change such government, and to create a new government and economic system that protect the rights of citizens and workers while also creating a society that meets their needs as human beings.
One part of the problem is the plutocratic masters are aided and abetted by a managerial, judicial, and political class who get their legitimacy not from vision, high marks from workers and citizens, or stewardship, but through a selection process, called the merit system, that more often than not chooses not on the basis of integrity, efficiency built on a recognition of externalities and sustainability, wisdom, and adherence to the first principles of our founding documents such as equality, justice, and liberty, but obsequiousness to money and power, raw self-serving intelligence driven by profit, and stunted emotional, moral, and intellectual development.
Such has been the patient sufferance of the mature, healthy, and numbed Americans who make a living through hands-on, non-investment, non-inherited means; Americans who want to live a life within their means; and such is now the necessity that compels them to alter their government and economic system for the betterment of all people and the survival of all species and life itself on the planet.
The history of the present ruling class is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of a totalitarian, corporate state, run by and for the plutocrats and politicians and government officials they own. To prove this, let facts be submitted to a candid world.
The legislative, judicial, and executive branches have not been functioning as separate powers checking each other as established by the framers of our re-public--a government for and by the people--but obedient servants of capital that have allowed investors, corporations, bankers and other plutocrats to undermine the life, liberty, and happiness of citizens.
First of all, by abdicating its constitutional authority to declare war to the executive branch, Congress has declared that the decision to go war will not be made in the chambers of a legislative branch, but behind the closed doors of the executive branch as the State Department, CIA, NSA, the Pentagon, corporations, militarists, and others deem fit.
The history, as revealed by the Pentagon Papers and documentation on the Iraq war and other foreign interventions, shows a train of abuses of power stretching from the overthrow of governments, arming of dictators, the squandering of trillions of dollars on unconstitutional wars, the training of right-wing death squads in Central and South America, Southeast Asia, and the torture of Abu Ghraib prisoners, to torture memos that expose both a sadistic culture mocking international accords and the Constitution and an underlying agenda that proves the United States military is nothing more than an army for hire protecting and expanding corporate and investor interests while crushing, under the auspices of “anti-communism” and “anti-terrorism,” any democratic and nationalistic movement striving for freedom.
This empire created and expanded extra-constitutionally and beyond public scrutiny has enriched the plutocrats, killed millions of innocent people, caused irreparable damage to the environment, emptied the treasury, destroyed the lives of millions of Americans, and impoverished most people.
Secondly, by relinquishing its power to regulate commerce with foreign nations to the executive branch, Congress has allowed corporations and representatives of foreign governments to write--behind closed doors and beyond public scrutiny—unfair treaties that undermine the sovereignty of America while enriching the few.
These treaties give perverse tax incentives to corporations off-shoring production while also rewarding those unwilling to pay American workers a living wage and unwilling to adhere to the workplace and environmental protections. Moreover, they reward corporations, working in cahoots with nations with political systems opposed to America’s first principles of liberty, equality, justice, and the right to assemble and organize.
In sum, most Congresspeople are the shills of a radical un-American minority that has hollowed out America’s manufacturing and destroyed the bargaining power and standard of living of Americans.
Thirdly, Congress has reneged on its responsibility to “coin money and regulate the value thereof,” to a private bank—the Federal Reserve--made up of American and international bankers. The result of this act has in the words of Louis McFadden former Chairman of the House Banking Committee, created a “private monopoly, which preys upon the people of the United States for the benefit of themselves and their foreign customers, foreign and domestic speculators and swindlers, and rich and predatory money lenders.” This shirking of responsibility has left Americans open to the machinations of Wall Street and international bankers.
Fourthly, the judicial branch has proved itself unwilling to protect the rights of citizens and check the ambitions of the powerful by: passing Citizen’s United which has opened the flood gate of money into the political process; by not protecting its own citizens and the citizens of other nations from cruel and unusual punishment at the hands of the military and police; by failing to protect citizens from illegal searches and seizures; by failing to uphold habeas corpus and protect people’s right to a speedy and a fair jury trial by a jury of peers; by failing to hold corporations responsible for crimes that if committed by individuals would lead to severe criminal penalties; by failing to protect public lands from rapacious corporations; by failing to protect peaceful demonstrators right to peacefully assemble to redress grievances; by failing to protect citizens right to vote; by failing to protect the free press and whistleblowers’ constitutional right to expose unconstitutional, illegal, and corrupt behavior; by failing to protect citizens from surveillance; by giving immunity to prosecutors and police; by favoring business over consumers; in short, by turning a blind eye to first principles of the founding documents and international agreements, the courts have allowed crimes in high places to go unpunished and failed to protect the rights of American citizens and protect the commons from rapacious corporations and individuals.
For example, after the Congress and the president, at the behest of the banks and lobbyists overturned Glass-Steagall, passed the CFMA (Commodities Futures Modernization Act), and didn’t adequately regulate and oversee financial markets, the market crashed.
In the aftermath, faced with the choice of helping homeowners--who unlike those in the highest reaches of banks and the government, did not have access to crucial information or control over policies and oversight and thus constituted no moral hazard--the government, made up of many former Wall Street executives, chose to bail out the banks with over $13 trillion of public money, and in the meantime ignored the fraud and predatory lending practices of the banks, which is akin to the victim paying the thief.
At the state level ALEC (American Legislative Exchange Council) has written legislation behind closed doors and beyond public scrutiny that overturned usury laws, suppressed voting rights through restrictive voter ID laws, overturned limits on bank fees, overturned regulations on predatory lending practices, limited expert witness rights, punitive damages, and class action lawsuits, backed tort reform with the sole purpose of protecting corporations from liability, repealed minimum wage laws, restricted the collective bargaining rights of workers, protected corporations from having to reveal the contents of fracking material, backed unneeded stand your ground laws that have led to many tragic murders, backed strict laws that increased incarceration rates, and much more.
The cause of this usurpation of power on the state, federal, and economic levels are not by chance but the result of what Princeton professors Gilen and Page proved in their research: that Congresspeople do not represent--as essential for any functioning democratic republic--the majority view but those of the top 1%.
In fact, a detailed analysis of the laws and bills passed over the last twenty years, and beyond, clearly show the majority’s will is ignored in favor of the 1%, who would not possess such power if not for the venal politicians; politicians with a character that can best be summed up as self-serving, self-promoting, and totally indifferent to both the principles of the Constitution to which they pledge to uphold and the people for whom they say they represent.
Indeed, the American people do not enjoy the full range of rights guaranteed as citizens, but privileges that can at best--be described as those reserved for subjects, and at the worst for serfs or wage slaves, who live month-to-month with little hope for the future and no political power.
These privileges have reduced people to mere spectators of history with no say in the political process and an overriding fear to exercise their constitutional rights. Soldiers, for instance, rarely contemplate their oath to the constitution, but often rationalize their service in unconstitutional wars as duty to fellow soldiers; most workers are afraid to exercise their right to organize and redress grievances for fear of losing their job; citizens expressing their political views and recreating with substances that harm no one are routinely brutalized, arrested, and imprisoned by a corporate-driven legal system supported by a police and surveillance state.
This attack on the civil liberties and the economic negotiating power and well-being of the people has been further downgraded by the Patriot Act and economic policies, such as trade deals, that have undermined the very essence of what it means to live in a democratic republic and made a mockery of its founding principles as they are clearly stated in the Preamble of the Constitution:
We the People of the United States in order to form a more perfect union, establish justice, insure domestic tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution of the United States of America.
We the people does not mean we the investors or we the 1%. People is plural. It refers to all people regardless of wealth, status, family, personal connections, or ethnic background.
Similarly, a more perfect union does not mean a nation divided economically, racially, or otherwise. It clearly refers to a community of people from different states living peacefully together. This union was established so justice could reign, not favoritism, nepotism, corruption, fraud, greed, economic predation, and all sorts of criminal behavior in high places, but a system of government established for all people to be treated equally under the law.
A tranquil nation, a nation of peace, calm, and quiet, cannot exist if half of the population is living near or below the poverty level in communities ravaged by crime, drugs, joblessness, poor schools, inadequate health care, transportation, and public facilities that create an unstimulating environment of hopelessness more akin to a nation ravaged by war than a peaceful republic.
This is where America now stands, and although it is true that narrowly speaking the general welfare clause relates to congressional power to tax and use money to defend the nation from a legitimate threat and not to promote the welfare of the people, it does not mean that Congress has the right to allow the military to be used as a private army to further and protect business interests or engage in endless and expensive wars against exaggerated or nonexistent enemies any more than it gives Congress the right to sell legislation that rewards and protects the economic interests of a small minority that work against the welfare of the people.
The people’s blessings of liberty—the ability to live free from tyranny; free of arbitrariness, capriciousness, and cruelity—is not secured in a nation where constitutional rights stop at the workplace door and do not extend to the commons and the very privacy of one’s home.
When a nation goes to war over non-existent WMD’s and theories about dominoes falling; when it bases its economic policies on “theories” written on the back of napkins; when the word objectivity is reduced to listening to demagoguery; when science is replaced by religion and opinion purchased commercially; when work performance or electability is judged by one’s likability, then there is no liberty only the arbitrariness of a plutocracy that comforts the comfortable.
Unfortunately, much of the people’s attention has been diverted from the coup to, among other things, the so-called “loss” of America’s work ethic/competitiveness, the “poor” education system, the “benefits” of globalization, and the “liberal” media, when in reality no amount of education or increase in productivity will bring back jobs because there is no loss of work ethic; a convenient misnomer put forth by the plutocrats and the older generation to rationalize the outsourcing of jobs. Nor is the education system any worse off, as outside of poor rural and urban schools, American schools stack up against the best in the world. The real issues, the ones behind the curtain so to speak, are that past American generations did not compete with low-wage Chinese workers and trade policies that not only put Americans at a competitive disadvantage but also reward, what should be called, traitorous behavior, and, of course, the rightward shift of American politics and public opinion.
In places like China, for instance, American corporations, who can put into practice policies they wish they could bring back to America, don’t have to worry about workers exercising their constitutional rights because they don’t have any. Workers who try to form a union are often taken out back and shot in the head. There are no protections for workers or the environment in China and other “trading partners” of the United States in a global economy that brutalizes workers and exploits the environment with impunity. Thus, for companies like Apple, Wal-Mart, Target, Home Depot and all the other behemoths that bought the support of American politicians and benefit from a “free” global market, there are only absurd profits as far as the eye can see.
The result of these corporate-friendly policies that have hollowed out America’s manufacturing is epitomized by Wal-Mart, a company that relies on cheap, brutalized workers abroad and development subsidies and public assistance at home to reap unimaginable profits so that four Walton heirs--who like 80% of their billionaire brethren inherited their wealth--can amass fortunes greater than the net worth of poorest 150 million Americans!
Such imperial amassing of wealth is unheard of in the annals of history, but in America, such exploits are applauded, as if the gold spoon in mouth capitalists actually did something for the nation other than sucking the lifeblood out of it.
But then again, with 80% of the income gains have gone to the 1% over the past 30 years, and the top 1% owning roughly 50% of the total assets of the nation and the top 10% owning roughly 80% while 50% of Americans net worth is zero, what should one expect? These kinds of distribution numbers are more familiar to a 17th century American living under the yoke of the king than a 21st century American living in a nation supposedly built on the words, We the People.
Such is the suffering of the American people. They have lost their ability to check the excesses of power and have stood by, as Congress, the courts, and the executive branch have become willing participants in a class war on the American people. The multitude of other crimes committed by the government and its plutocratic masters cannot be ignored but must be revealed so that the people can walk forward with eyes wide open:
For quartering large bodies of armed troops in nations around the globe without the consent or knowledge of the people.
For sustaining a shadow government that operates economic hit men who take advantage of foreign nations to the sole benefit of American corporations and investors in full disrespect of human rights and the democratic principles of the United States.
That allows American arms dealers to sell weapons to foreign criminal organizations. These arms are used to kill people and maintain and expand the illegal drug trade.
They have allowed policemen to use unnecessary force to the point of bodily injury to peaceful protestors.
While they protect policemen who assault peaceful protestors, they ignore thousands of bankers, who through fraud and predatory practices, prey on citizens, and destroy the economy and livelihood of millions of Americans.
They have allowed the indiscriminate fishing and polluting of the open seas such as with the Gulf by BP without major consequence for the offenders or consideration for the health of the people or the sustainability of ecosystems.
They have allowed mega-farms, oil companies, and natural gas companies (through fracking) to pollute public and private lands indiscriminately without holding them liable for cleanup or compensation to the people they irredeemably affected.
They have unlawfully allowed multinational corporations to spread the use of GMO seeds despite knowing the risks they pose to the people.
They have failed to properly check the safety of immunizations.
They have allowed the meat industry to centralize operations and utilize antibiotics and growth hormones to speed up the growth of animals without due consideration of public health or environmental consequences.
They have supported the spread of nuclear power without informing the public of the true long-term and immediate risks.
They have supported a health care industry built around insurance companies that add no value to health care by minimizing and denying coverage to maximize profits.
They have allowed corporations and farmers to exploit illegal immigrants by avoiding the passage of sensible immigration reform that would grant law-abiding immigrants who learn English citizenship while also punishing those engaged in criminal activities.
They have failed to stem the flow of illegal and legal immigrants used by the corporations for the sole purpose of driving down wages.
They have, at this time, been transporting large armies of private mercenaries to complete the works of death, desolation and tyranny, already begun with circumstances of cruelty and perfidy scarcely paralleled in the most barbarous ages, and totally unworthy the head of a civilized nation.
They have supported inefficient and exploitative policies that have driven the nation to financial and spiritual bankruptcy.
They are now working to punish the people by cutting social programs such as the social security insurance system that all Americans have paid into with their hard earned money for the sake of the private sector that destroyed the economy.
They have allowed the lazy and corrupt CEO’s, upper management, school administrators, and investment class to usurp all the gains of the productivity generated by Americans engineers, technicians, and laborers, ending the post-war agreement of shared prosperity.
They have forced Americans to take on debt unheard of in the annals of American history to make up for the loss of wages.
They have used public monies to build stadiums and secure a whole slew of other giveaways for the ruling class, creating a nanny state for the wealthy unheard of since the Gilded Age.
They allowed the courts to degrade into a system that unfairly targets the poor and middle class but ignores white-collar crimes.
They have failed to enforce laws put in place to keep the air and water clean.
They have ignored the overwhelming evidence that clearly shows global warming is a serious threat that will affect the lives of our children and endanger the future survival of all life on the planet.
They have allowed and supported, through subsidies and war, monopolies like big oil to gouge consumers and keep cleaner and more efficient technologies from gaining a foothold.
They allowed tire, automobile, oil, and other industries to destroy public transportation systems in major cities throughout the nation.
They have unreasonably raised the cost of tuition for university students forcing millions of students in permanent debt.
They have taken control of the major media outlets, creating a propaganda machine manned by anchors who rarely question the underlying assumptions of our economic, political, health care, food, education, power, transportation, criminal justice, housing, and other systems while giving unquestioning allegiance to the economic system with its adjoining goals of maximizing profits for investors, ignoring externalities and exploitation, minimizing labor costs, favoring capital and undemocratic and inefficient forms of production and distribution, and supporting consumerism.
They have created a police state, in which police abuse their authority by: harassing and arresting citizens for trivial offenses to fill quotas, putting down non-violent protests with excessive and often violent force, making a mockery of their duty to serve and protect...
State governments, backed by the corporate state and plutocrats, whose sole objective is the complete control of information and subjugation of the masses to the point of unquestioning obedience not seen since the feudal period or slavery, have replaced tenured track university and college positions with underpaid and overworked adjuncts and non-tenured track instructors as well as increased the number of administrators, with the intent of curtailing academic freedom, reducing instructors collective bargaining right and negotiating power, and stifling or keeping out voices that question the economic, political, food, educational, healthcare, financial, transportation, prison, etcetera systems.
State governments with federal and corporate backing have maintained a K-12 educational system, fundamentally little different from the Prussian militarized educational system it was based on, that focuses on: instilling obedience to authority, whether legitimate or illegitimate, training technically sound but ethically, critically, and philosophically weak citizens, learners, and workers, and creating dependent and integrity starved human beings that lack a deep understanding and connection to the natural world, their inner world, and bodies, work especially as it serves human needs, life, and the community.
In every stage of these oppressions, abuses, usurpations, pathological behavior, and corruption we—the people who care about our republic and live within our means--have protested and asked for change in the most humble terms, yet our repeated attempts have been ignored, declared as naïve, violently suppressed, or woefully neglected. A politician or CEO, whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a sociopath, a perfidious and amoral individual, is unfit to be a representative of the people or a leader of business.
Nor have we been wanting in attention to our Republican and neo-liberal brethren. We have warned them about their misplaced allegiance, ignorance, and irrational faith in corporations and the “free” market system that has but one objective—the reduction of American workers to servitude, the mechanization of life, and the destruction of the environment.
This ruling class is traitorous. They have lied to, misled, and exploited the nation for their benefit to the detriment of the people, the environment, and future of the planet. Nevertheless, we have believed that America could turn itself away from the precipice of destruction and believed that all healthy humans strive for peace over war, health over sickness, freedom over license, truth over lies, justice overexploitation, love over hate, independence over dependence, the common good over individual greed, democracy over authoritarianism, sustainability over the pathological, life over death.
In the name of posterity, we have appealed to their native justice and magnanimity, and we have conjured them by the ties of our common kindred to disavow these usurpations and abuses.
For this, we have no answer. They have been deaf to the voice of justice, sustainability, morality, liberty, wisdom, and the common good. We must, therefore, accept their totalitarian nature, their hatred of people and democracy, their fear of democratizing the workplace--the next step in human freedom and progress as well as a needed check against the excesses of concentrated wealth, power, and deterrence to market crashes, their belief in the myth of “free” enterprise and "free" trade, the invisible hand, the sanctity of unregulated markets, their servitude to the boardroom, and their fear of authentic freedom and independence.
We, therefore, the people of the United States who want to create a more just, healthy, peaceful, and sustainable nation for all do solemnly publish and declare, that the people of the United States are, and of right ought to be free and independent from the evil machinations of the ruling class; that we are absolved from all allegiance to the plutocrats; for their wars, their business practices, their chains of debt, their irresponsible and unethical behavior, their exploitative ways, and that all political connections between us and them, including the two political parties; and the ties they have with the plutocrats including their laws granting corporations the rights of natural persons, their obsequiousness to lobbyists and the wealthy, is and ought to be totally dissolved; and that as a free and independent people endowed with unalienable rights have the right; nay, the duty to disband our government and change our economic system when it has turned against life and the natural rights granted to us by nature and driven many Americans into poverty and desperation unseen in any other developed nation on the planet. We, thus, mutually pledge that we will not relinquish our demands or pressure until we have achieved our goals for our sake and the sake of the nation and the planet.