Education for Our Times, An Introduction --by Michael Rectenwald, Ph.D.
Obviously, the CLG
does not agree with every article or book posted on our political education
page. That would impossible as some of them stand in contradiction to
others. Our object is to allow our readers to draw from various sources
in order to bolster their own arguments against the rightwing. We do not
represent rightwing political ideology here, as we believe that its tendency
is towards authoritarianism, and likewise the abrogation of the principles
of the US Constitution. Contrary to the propaganda of the right, the US
Constitution was founded on the principles of classical liberalism, the
principles of the Enlightenment--equality, liberty, and liberal democracy,
and not of Christianity. In any case, the Constitution is a document and
like all others is interpreted and applied historically. We work for its
most emancipating interpretation, which represents the spirit of the document
and the times during which it was framed.
But the CLG stands simply for
legitimate government in the US, as provided for constitutionally. Legitimate
Government means elected officials where said officials are by law supposed
to be elected. The election of officials is of especial importance in
the case of the most powerful official in the US government: the President.
The condition of election was not met in the 2000 presidential "election."
Furthermore, the US government,
has, we believe, been overtaken by fascists from the rightwing of the
US political spectrum. This became apparent in their siege upon Clinton
and their attempt to remove our last legitimately elected President from
office. The presidential selection of Bush and the entire machinery put
into motion to secure his position was further proof that the rightwing
would stop at nothing, respecting neither the rule of law nor the will
of voters, in their quest for control of the government. Their continued
steam-rolling over the majority, in the US and abroad, further evinces
this fact. Only a small contingent of the world, the rightwing supporters
of Bush and a few ill-educated others in the US, appear to be ignorant
of this political condition.
Neither do most of the Democrats
in Congress and the Senate appear to be aware of this fact. Having rubbed
shoulders with the officials of the right, they have become so accustomed
to them as to mistake them for decent human beings who simply have varying
points of view. Such a position is a very big mistake. Difference in politics
is one thing: but the politics of the right is a politics that would annihilate
all difference, steam-roll over the rights of citizens in favor of a strange
amalgam of imperious government and gigantic corporate concerns, representing
only the most powerful. Or, to be more precise, the current government
recognizes and respects only power itself. Power itself is the object
of worship to which all else must bow in obeisance. Obedience to a "charismatic"
leader and a thralldom to brute power are two of the primary marks of
But sheer power hardly represents anyone, and in the end, may turn on
the very ones who thought they only harnessed and used it to control others.
Despite the political fascism
and a strong element of cultural fascism, the entire US culture has not,
however, become fascist. Given our rich tradition of political and cultural
dissent, our relatively "free" market of ideas, our culture
of irreverence, and ironically in this case our strong ideology of individualism,
the US citizens have the means to resist and overthrow the fascist elements
that have conquered and occupy our government. Our comedians, our actors,
and other cultural producers, are a great source of resistance to fascism.
We hope this arsenal of political theory will also help the resistance.
CLG Founder and Chair
November 26, 2002