Thirdworldization of America
"Take away our playstations
and we are a third world nation."
Ani DiFranco, songwriter/singer
from her poem "Self-evident" about the 9-11 WTC bombing
"The United States is
slipping into a category of countries - among them Brazil, Britain,
and Guatemala - where the gap [between rich and poor] is the worst
around the globe."
United Nations' Human Development
"The U.S. propaganda system
is at the peak of its powers in the early years of the 21st century,
riding the wave of capitalism's triumph, U.S. global hegemony,
and the ... effective service of the increasingly concentrated
and commercialized mainstream media... in such times its ability
to ignore inconvenient facts, swallow disinformation, and work
the public over with propaganda can easily compete with - even
surpass - anything found in totalitarian systems."
Edward S. Herman
"U.S. Ieaders have striven
with much success to repress (1) the emergence of competing forms
of production (socialist, collectivist, communitarian); and (2)
competing capital formations (prosperous autonomous capitalist
economies, or mixed ones, in emerging nations, and with FTAA and
GATS, all public sector services except police and military in
all capitalist countries. The goal is the Third Worldization of
the entire world, including Europe and North America, a world
in which capital rules supreme with no public sector services;
no labor unions to speak of; no prosperous, literate, effectively
organized working class with rising expectations; no pension funds
or environmental, consumer, and occupational protections, or medical
plans, or any of the other insufferable things that cut into profit
"In many respects, we
now live in a society that is only formally democratic, as the
great mass of citizens have minimal say on the major public issues
of the day, and such issues are scarcely debated at all in any
meaningful sense in the electoral arena. In our society, corporations
and the wealthy enjoy a power every bit as immense as that assumed
to have been enjoyed by the lords and royalty of feudal times."
Robert W. McChesney, author of
Rich Media, Poor Democracy
" The USA has been quick
to voice its condemnation of human rights violations in some other
countries and to stress, by contrast, the wealth of civil and
political rights which it guarantees within its borders . . .
however, it has failed to deliver these rights to many of its
people and there are signs that, unless urgent steps are taken,
these rights will be further eroded ."
"Increases in prison spending
[in the U.S.] average twice as high as increases in education
National Criminal Justice Commission
"We now live in a state
of permanent war - a global arms industry, apparently the largest
single international business, must have its products used up
so more can be sold. There must be profits for the capitalists
and jobs for the proles... Are we not still in Caligula's Rome?
New Internationalist magazine
"From 1984 to 1994, Califomia
built 21 prisons, and only one state university...the prison system
realized a 209% increase in funding, compared to a 15% increase
in state university funding."
The Justice Policy Institute (1996)
"We can have democracy
in this country, or we can have great wealth concentrated in the
hands of a few, but we can't have both."
Louis Brandeis, Supreme Court
Justice from 1916-1939
" The problem in defense
is how far you can go [in military spending] without destroying
from within what you are trying to defend from without. "
President Dwight Eisenhower, 1953
"War is caused by elites
acting in what they take to be their own interests, institutional
violence promulgated by ruling groups for personal gain."
The Nation magazine
"Nineteen of the 26 military
officers that critics cited in the murder of six Jesuit priests
and two women in El Salvador eight years ago were graduates of
the School of the Americas."
Associated Press "School
of the Americas = School of the Assassins," May 2, 1998
" Few of us can easily
surrender our belief that society must somehow make sense. The
thought that the state has lost its mind and is punishing so many
innocent people is intolerable. And so the evidence has to be
internally denied. "
Arthur Miller, playwright
" It is the function of
the CIA to keep the world unstable and to propagandize the American
people to hate, so we will let the establishment spend any amount
of money on arms. "
John Stockwell, former CIA official
"If democracy is ever
to be threatened, it will not be by revolutionary groups burning
government offices and occupying the broadcasting and newspaper
offices of the world. It will come from disenchantment, cynicism
and despair caused by the realization that the New World Order
means we are all to be managed and not represented."
Tony Benn, British Labour Party
Member of Parliament
" ... there is a system of
terroristic states -- the real terror network -- that has spread
throughout Latin America and elsewhere over the past several decades,
and which is deeply rooted in the corporate interest and sustaining
political-military-financial propaganda mechanisms of the United
States and its allies in the Free World."
Edward Herman, author and foreign
"America is today the
leader of a world-wide anti-revolutionary movement in the defense
of vested interests. She now stands for what Rome stood for. Rome
consistently supported the rich against the poor in all foreign
communities that fell under her sway; and, since the poor, so
far, have always and everywhere been far more numerous than the
rich, Rome's policy made for inequality, for injustice, and for
the least happiness of the greatest number."
Arnold Toynbee, historian, 1961
" I can teach you about
torture, but sooner or later you'll have to get involved. You'll
have to lay on your hands and try it yourselves ... The precise
pain, in the precise place, in the precise amount, for the desired
Head of the US Office of Public
Safety (OPS) mission in Uruguay in 1960s, (Dan Mitrione) teaching
classes in the art of torture
"The American oligarchy
increasingly has less in common with the American people than
it does with the equivalent oligarchies in Germany or Mexico or
Lewis Lapham, journalist
"The only thing worth globalizing
Arundhati Roy, author
"All the emphasis on crime
and drugs and pornography used to justify the suppression of the
Internet is really aimed at suppressing knowledge of the radical
politic alternatives that are now available."
Tony Benn, British Labour Party
Member of Parliament
by enduring deep divisions of income and wealth, such as most
third-world societies, are wounded societies with little sense
of the common good... As America drifts in this direction, ending
poverty and redistributing income should be at the top of the
Charles Derber, Corporation Nation
" Any dictator would admire
the uniformity and obedience of the [U.S.] media."
Noam Chomsky, American linguist
and US media and foreign policy critic
" Many of us regard ourselves
as mildly liberal or centrist politically, voice fairly pleasant
sentiments about our poor children, contribute money to send poor
kids to summer camp, feel benevolent. We're not nazis; we're nice
people. We read sophisticated books. We go to church. We go to
synagogue. Meanwhile, we put other people's children into an economic
and environmental death zone. We make it hard for them to get
out. We strip the place bare of amenities. And we sit back and
say to ourselves, "Well, I hope that they don't kill each
other off. But if they do, it's not my fault."
Jonathan Kozol, educator and author
" We believe that the
government and the police have embarked on a strategy of repression
to stop, crush or marginalize the burgeoning progressive movement
that gained world attention in the protest against the WTO in
Seattle last year."
International Action Center attorneys
announcing the filing of a class-action lawsuit on behalf of protestors
at the WTO Ministerial meeting in Seattle, Washington, April 1999
"The greatest menace to
freedom is an inert people."
Supreme Court Justice Louis Brandeis
New Orleans - Hurricane Katrina - August,
"No other democratic country
in the world denies as many people - in absolute or proportional
terms - the right to vote because of felony convictions."
Human Rights Watch - "World
Report 1999, United States"
"More than I00 countries
have now abolished the death penalty in law or practice ... Against
the global trend towards abolition, however, the U.S.A. has relentlessly
increased its rate of executions and the number of crimes punishable
Amnesty International "United
States of America- Rights for All," October 1998
"When Time magazine
conducted a poll in Europe in March  asking which of three
- North Korea, Iraq, or the United States - was the biggest threat
to world peace, a whopping 86.9% answered the United States."
Immanuel Wallerstein, Covert Action
World in United States