All posts tagged: Democracy

Vaclav Havel :: Freedom Fighter or Militarist Capitalist?

The biggest myths perpetuated in the history of political economic analysis are the established contradistinctions between ‘democracy’ and ‘dictatorship’. Based on outlined differences, democracy is canonized as the opposite model of political governance to what is disgraced as dictatorship. And with this logic in place, Vaclav Havel is glorified to be a “freedom fighter” of his land, and Kim Jong-il is denounced as a dictator who throttled freedom in his country. It may be an irony that both these leaders died around the same time, but what is way bigger a concern is the manner in which they are being judged as historical subjects. In a corporate media culture that actively moulds our everyday thought processes through news contents, it is necessary to pause awhile, and dissect such enormous conclusions and examine if the impositions of such documented views are merely hasty, or purely methodical. For history is not just a body of collective knowledge compiled for posterity, but more importantly, critical investigations into historical scholarships instill the more necessary weapons in the minds of …

Communists Must Win, Now That the Election is Lost

By Saswat Pattanayak Elections are social, not political events. Whereas social functions entail an understanding of, and adherence to established norms, effective political actions require empowered state of conscientious being. Democratic elections – from ancient noble Greece to enslaved corporate America – take place independent of mass empowerment, most often, by keeping the participants oblivious. People are kept sufficiently ignorant about the repercussions of their actions by not only the political parties, but by their media cohorts in general. What is instead propagated at an almost constant level comprises pure trivia: the equations of wins and defeats, the seats and the states, and the number games to legitimize a victor. What results is a triumph of the end-product of elections, than an exposition of process complexities so as to challenge existing structures of power. Every mass-based hierarchical election that claims to have democratic character in turn produces a winner which revels in celebration of conquest as a finality of purpose, not identification of its purpose as worthy of celebration. After all, identification of purpose in …

New American Magic Realism

By Saswat Pattanayak Now that some time has passed since the United States stopped rejoicing a routine election fanfare necessitating short term relief from the economic war the capitalist government has unleashed upon the media consumers, one needs to critically attend to the repercussion of the events that passed by. Not only Bush-McCain administration was unacceptable to the American people, they were equally unwanted by the corporate czars. Fixation on Iraq had to shift gears as not much excitement was left following brutal murder of Saddam Hussain. The military-industrial complex, tired of its “reconstruction” missions in Iraq (despite the profitability factor that leads them to continue seizing the land to this day) needed to focus elsewhere. And the new war mission needed to find a new leader. A differently appearing, yet positioned similarly in direction, an attractive personality, with a deceptively mixed agenda needed to be given charge. From nullifying the necessity to contain electoral budgets to promoting imperialistic expansions in the “post-war” period, from conveying an impression of rendering public service through recreation of …

An Open Letter to President Obama: Against the Rhetoric of Hope

BY SASWAT PATTANAYAKOriginally written for publication in Radical Notes Dear President Obama, I hope you truly emerge as the hope you have claimed yourself to be. A hope for the ordinary people, who have believed in your promises of change and cried tears of joy upon your election. A hope that will let the likes of Bernard Madoffs to face trial and be sent to jail, not left to enjoy house arrest at his comfortable multi-million-dollar penthouse, while, need I mention, thousands of young people of color languish as under-trial prisoners of the industrial complex you are going to chair, a couple of days from now. A hope that will finally help you decide whether or not you will cancel the series of billion-dollar extravaganzas that have been planned to herald your taking up a position of responsibility to serve, not rule. At a time when the world is reeling under economic depression a hope that you shall declare these scums of earth – those that are spending $50,000 a ticket to get a favoured …