Man, that sad fuck...
OK, one of the main unacknowledged problems with American politics is the control of government by corporations. The corporate interests in this country have about 90% of the Republicans and 40% to 60% of the Democrats firmly under their thumbs. This gives them a solid majority - almost vetoproof, not that there's been a non-corporate president for a long while. Maybe Teddy Rooseveldt, or FDR (and if you recall, the Morgans and DuPonts tried to stage a military coup against him.)
Corporate control extends to foreign policy. The war in Iraq was pushed by Cheney and Rumsfeld, both tools of the petro-military-industrial complex. The war in Iraq has been good for corporate America in so many ways. From the theft(billions unaccounted for) to the graft (billions in contractual theft) to the military resupply to the increased price of oil, Wall Street lurves that Iraq crap.
This can be seen in some of the 'what the hell are you smoking' policies that come out of Washington, and that we see in the corporate press. Things that are so wrong-headed, so obviously benefitting a limited group against the will of the people. Want to know what I'm talking about? Here's a few that spring to mind.
Tax cuts. Tax cuts, which have been skewed slightly to seriously towards the rich and against everyone else, are assumed to be the norm. When the Democrats have a policy, it's targeted tax cuts. When the Republicans are in charge, they are expected to chunk out a major gift to the rich (what do you get someone who has everything? More everything!) Raising taxes is assumed to be political suicide, despite the fact that large majorities support them, when they're progressive (the rich pay more) and people know what the money is going for. But they're 'taboo'.
Support of the government of Israel. This is something that I could way go off on, given the blatant crap that the Israeli government is doing right now, but the short version is that you can't criticize anything they do or you're an anti-semite, and you'll be made to pay during the elections. AIPAC, which Juan Cole calls the lobbying arm of the Israeli Defense Force, is one of the main tools used.
Support of corporate managed trade, hypocritically known as 'Free Trade.' Naturally, Republicans want this, although they sometimes get defections based on opposition from local industries. (Steel tarrifs, agricultural subsidies, etc.) Bill Clinton, who is the great white hope to some on the left, showed his colors admirably when he spent huge amounts of political capital to get NAFTA passed. At the same time, a law banning permanent replacement of striking workers (an anti-scab law) passed the House and failed in the Senate by TWO VOTES. If Billy was really for the working man, he'd have told international capital to screw itself, and pushed back for organized labor, which hadn't had a positive step since freaking 1934.
These are just a few. These kinds of policies, beloved of corporations, are considered to be just normal. This is based, of course, on control of the government and the coporate propaganda system of pundits and corrupt newsrooms.
It used to be that the Democrats would slow down or moderate or even ameliorate these kinds of things. But that's before they sold their souls to the bankers. And the mechanism that they have been using to do so is the Democratic Leadership Council, or the DLC.
The DLC is a lobby group intended to increase the voice of corporations in the Democratic party. It gave us Bill Clinton, Joe Lieberman, Al Gore, and John Kerry. It also gave us a debate in this country that's crippled (as see above.) And the DLC got it's top-heavy, top-down ass whupped in Connecticut.
Joe was a special beast. Not only did his foreign policy totally align with the neoconservatives, he was happy to undercut the party. He was a Quisling who turned against his own people, a victim of Stockholm syndrome who identified with his captors. He was the prison trustee given special freedoms as long as he kept his fellows in line.
And he did all these things, and that cost him.
Fare thee well, Joe. Maybe one of your corporate buddies can get you a hot lobbying job after all this is through.