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The Pathological Voter

by Luke Hiken and Marti Hiken l Progressive Avenues
What is going on in this country? Have the citizens of the U.S. gone totally mad?
The U.S. Congress has an approval rating of less than 10%. Greedy, unprincipled billionaires own virtually all of the wealth of the nation, and pay a lower percentage for taxes than the poorest worker. We imprison a greater percent of our population than any nation on earth. We spend more on vicious, unwarranted wars than the 15 top military spending countries combined. We are the greatest purveyor of murder and destruction internationally than anyone else.
Our public school system is under attack, and becoming obsolete. A college degree has become so expensive as to be unavailable to middle class families. The safety net for the old and infirm is being torn asunder. Our immigration policies are so degrading and inhumane that there is a mass exodus from the U.S. by peoples who used to flock here. Health care is a national disgrace, and is fast becoming unaffordable to any person in need of hospitalization. Homeland Security looks more like the German Gestapo every day.
The list of failures and problems facing the country is unparalleled, and the public knows it. Everything from cartoons to serious news shows bemoan the catastrophic decline in this country’s standard of living, and recognize the incompetence and inhumanity of those in power. This is so, even though the public media is little more than a propaganda tool for the oligarchy.
What is the most astonishing fact, though, is that there are no candidates or possibilities for new leadership on the horizon anywhere! Obama is the best of the pack of wolves and thieves who are actively destroying this nation. 95% of those in Congress who are running for re-election are virtually certain to retain their status. How in the world is that possible? Any rational person would expect the electorate to throw these pandering, posturing politicians out on their keesters, and elect a set of representatives who would radically change the picture. But instead, we are about to re-affirm the failed, dying programs that have transformed this country into a violent, disrespected second-rate nation. What a contradiction in logic and reality!
What kind of national pathology is causing the electorate to allow the oligarchy to engage in this unadulterated rush to destroy everything of value in this country? Like lemmings, rushing into the sea to commit suicide, the voters will once again endorse the same fools who have immobilized Congress for decades, will do nothing to control a run-away Pentagon, and its maniacal weapons manufacturers, and will accept Wall Street’s unregulated destruction of our wealth and resources. There is simply no rational explanation for the inability of the American people to find alternatives to the elected gangsters who bow to every billionaire that comes before them.
It is apparent that the voting public in the U.S. feels so disenfranchised from the process that it has for all intents left the spoils to the thieves. By abandoning any process by which there can be meaningful change in the policies of this government, the people have accepted the fact that there are no meaningful differences between the Democrats and the Republicans. The wars will continue, the repression will expand, the rich will get richer, and the rest of us are on our own.

Marti Hiken is the director of Progressive Avenues. She is the former Associate Director of the Institute for Public Accuracy and former chair of the National Lawyers Guild Military Law Task Force. She can be contacted at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., 415-702-9682.

Luke Hiken is an attorney who has engaged in the practice of criminal, military, immigration, and appellate law.

The Progressive Avenues website,, is regularly updated in the “What’s Added, What’s New” link on the Home page, at
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