Form the earliest times of humans organizing into tribes the leaders were aware of simple realities: Throw a few crumbs to the masses – enough to feed their children – and you could stay in power. Deny the masses and suffer protest and eventual stripping of power. Government leaders across the globe – from Egypt to the financial centers in New York and Hong Kong – allowed a stripping of the wealth from the working class in the early twenty-first century. Let the protests begin.
This is a simple matter of Maslow’s Heirachy of Needs. Humans can tolerate inability to fulfill personal dreams of self-actualization just as long as their children are not hungry. Threaten fundamental safety and security and look out – the people will rise up and bite the leaders in the ass.
The Republicans don’t seem to get this idea. They are no different than Hosi Mubarak. Deny health care to children, deny the opportunity to work and earn a decent wage, take away pensions, rob 401K plans, look the other way while comrades run horrendous ponzi schemes, send our children to war, abuse the powers of police (Patriot Act), and generally abuse the masses of people – look out, we will rise up and topple your stingy ass.
This is not rocket science – it is evident throughout the written history of mankind. Check any populist uprising, check any populist led revolution, the causes are consistent. The results of the revolution may not have worked out in a manner consistent with the revolution intent – but the revolt was just as real.
The revolutionary leftist movement in North American in the late 1700’s set up a form of government which resembles the ideal of Castro – that of constant revolution. The Constitution of the United States of America was designed to bend with the wind. We in the United States have been in a constant state of protest since the founding of this great nation. As such we have addressed the issues of slavery, workers rights, women’s rights, segregation by race, and business monopolies. The process has not always been pretty. Sometimes the process was quite ugly (check out the Civil War). George W. Bush tried to turn back the clock – and we are witnessing the inevitable result in the form of continual protest from the people.
The revolutionary protests we are witnessing around the world today are direct results of the financial crisis brought on by the greed of the wealthy, by the oppression of dictators, by the willful abuse of power. President George W. Bush and his Republican cronies are likely responsible for most of the calamity around the world today. They fostered an attitude of ignoring government oversight of business in general and the financial sector in particular. Alan Greenspan, former Chief of the Fed (so-to-speak), seemed to be shocked by the abuses. He openly admitted they intentionally let the reigns loose so business could run a faster race. When the financial world collapsed Greenspan feigned shock and disbelief at the financial malpractice.
Tea Party protesters in America are having their party at the wrong house. They are in the wrong parlor and are playing with a deck stacked by the very same people who brought dishonor on our country. This slight of hand has temporary staying power. Historically, when the populist protest resulted in an even worse form of government, there was a only a short time (in historical terms) before the new government was thrown out. The Bolshevik revolution in Russia resulted in the Soviet Union – a government style that lasted about seventy years. The French Revolution of 1793 cast France into a long struggle for sanity in government – with notable characters such as Napoleon Bonaparte briefly taking center stage. Castro’s revolt in Cuba around 1960 is unraveling fifty years later. Again, bad guys only win in the short term.
The point is simple – the protests we are witnessing from Wisconsin to Egypt are the result of abusive leadership – Leadership that ignored the masses in favor of the silver spoon. Deny a person the right to protect his family and look out – you will have protest – and you will see change.