This transcript appears in the January 28, 2005 issue of Executive Intelligence Review.
The American System
by Jeffrey Steinberg
EIR editor Jeffrey Steinberg spoke from the floor during the discussion on Jan. 12. 2005 at an EIR-sponsored seminar in Berlin, Germany, in response to earlier comments, questioning the prospects of serious resistance to the Bush Administration from within the United States.This fellow got a particular view of the United States, because he frankly spent most of the time working with us, met with a great number of people in Washington, and came away with a view of the level of fight inside the U.S. political institutions that would be impossible to view from the outside.... It's literally the case that there are aspects of the American political situation now, that are absolutely revolutionary, in the sense that Mr. LaRouche discussed it, but which are virtually impossible to see, except as barely flickering shadows on the wall of the cave, from outside the United States.
It is literally the case—I was there, I saw it, and I do a lot of the work in Washington, D.C. among these various political institutions. I can say, with absolute certainty, that two international webcasts that Mr. LaRouche did, following the elections—the first on Nov. 9, one week to the day after the elections, when frankly most Americans were sort of puddles, in shock; and then the webcast on Jan. 5 of this year, the day before the historic Joint Session of the U.S. Congress. That historic event would not have happened, without Lyn's intervention. There was not a clear sense of political orientation, even among the people in the Democratic Party, and even in the people in the Republican Party who opposed Bush, as to what to do, with what was obviously a deeply flawed election. There was just a general sense, across the board, that Kerry probably won.
And Lyn laid out a very clear, immediate strategy: Take up the issue of vote suppression. Don't go for the universal question of somehow magically proving massive vote fraud, when the actual issue was that hundreds of thousands or more voters were simply denied the right to vote, even though they showed up at the polling places. In some cases, it was because there were no voting machines to vote on, or there were so few voting machines that people were forced to wait for nine or ten hours. But, the point is that Lyn laid out a perspective, that shaped action that was taken up by a whole array of people in and around the Democratic Party.
On Jan. 5, after Lyn's opening remarks, there was a question presented by a group of members of the U.S. Congress, who wanted to know what Lyn's marching orders were in terms of the events of the next day, when it was still undecided whether or not a member of the U.S. Senate would join with members of the House of Representatives, and challenge the authenticity of Bush's victory. And, Lyn delivered brief remarks, basically saying: If you don't fight this issue, regardless of the outcome, then you will be unable to fight any other crucial issue—from Social Security to the Iraq War.
And we know that Lyn's message resonated at the highest levels of the Democratic Party. It was probably the decisive factor in pushing Senator Boxer over the edge, to decide to take up this historic initiative.
Now, this is something that never happened before, in the history of the United States....
And when Senator Boxer made her announcement, moments later there was a meeting at the White House, with all of the White House lawyers; Bush was there; Cheney was there. In his capacity as president of the Senate, Cheney was going to be chairing the meeting where this was going to happen. And Cheney simply told the people at the White House—we know it, because Republicans wanted Lyn to know this—Cheney said, "I'm not going to do it. I'm going to declare this out of order." A total defiance of the Constitution! And a fight erupted at the White House, with all of these lawyers saying, "You can't do this!" Not because they wouldn't have preferred to have done it, but because they knew the politically explosive consequences, if Cheney tried to do this. This would have been a colossal blunder. So, instead Cheney had to hug his fibrillator, bite his tongue, and allow this process to play out.
This changed the political dynamic in the United States, in a decisive way, that makes it not merely a "possibility," but a strong probability, that we're going to destroy Bush on this Social Security issue.
Now, many of us—Lyn most emphatically—had a very frank appraisal of the U.S. elections, going into them. We knew that were Kerry to win, it would be a victory despite himself, because of the absolute failure of the Democratic Party, prior to Labor Day—prior to the beginning of September—to wage any kind of campaign with the intention of winning. And the first step, in that impotent campaign, was the failure to allow Mr. LaRouche to participate in the debates during the Democratic primaries. Some of those mistakes were corrected, very late in the game. And so, it didn't come as a surprise, that Kerry didn't reach the hurdle of overcoming the vote fraud apparatus that we knew was in place. So, we didn't have all of our eggs in the basket of a Kerry victory.
Many other people had the view that Kerry was likely to win, and did put all their eggs in that basket, which is why so many people were shattered for a couple of months. And we spent a great deal of time dispensing psychiatric care to members of the Congress, to top people in the Democratic Party, former senior officials in government. I want to give an appraisal, from having come from Washington, D.C. just in the last 12 hours:
The fact that the Bush election has now been certified, has served as a kind of an unavoidable message, to many people in the United States, that they cannot avoid the personal responsibility, to actually take up the kind of fight that Mr. LaRouche has been leading. And, on many issues, there are very clear signs of a dramatic shift in the political environment.
Number 1, the fact that Senator Boxer and others in the Senate, did actually join in this historic challenge. And the New York Times, the next day said, "Oops, there goes Bush's mandate."
On the Gonzales question: Aside from what we've done on the issue, the lead has been taken up by a large number of retired military people, including especially people who are part of the Judge Advocates General system. These are, generally speaking, retired three- and four-star generals and admirals, who have come forward and essentially denounced Bush, Cheney, and Gonzales as war criminals. They explicitly cited the violations of the Geneva Convention. I was at an event yesterday in Washington, where one former ambassador got up, and said that the entire Joint Chiefs of Staff were behaving like—he mentioned General Keitel, who was the military officer in charge of Hitler's inner staff. He just flat-out said, that this is what's going on. There was a class on Tuesday, at Columbia University Law School, by one of the leaders of the New York Bar Association, on the historical parallels between Hitler's approach to preventive war and the abrogation of The Hague Conventions, and what the Bush Administration has done in abrogating the Geneva Conventions and adopting a doctrine of preventive nuclear war.
So, I'm very encouraged by many aspects of the situation—not because there's going to be some Pollyanna idea of a change in the Bush Administration; but, because they're running aground on a number of key issues. Armitage, not one of the great geniuses of American diplomatic history, came back from a trip to the Middle East yesterday, met with the President in the Oval Office, and told him, "We have lost Iraq"—and was promptly booted out of the office. Because such reality is not permissible inside the Administration.
So, there's a very sharp shift in the political correlation of forces in the United States, which is going to become more visible, but is not really clearly visible from the outside.
A Political Realignment
The final point I want to make on this, is that one of the new and very crucial realities on the ground, in American politics, is the LaRouche Youth Movement, which is becoming a critical factor inside the Democratic Party in the United States. It is the official—or unofficial, whatever you want to call it—youth movement of the Democratic Party, by default: Because nobody else in the United States has even the foggiest concept, about how to recruit young people into politics today. And so, there's a certain very real sense, inside the Democratic Party, that what Mr. LaRouche has done, in forming this Youth Movement—this is the future, of the Democratic Party, and the future of the republic. And there are also, increasingly among Republicans, people who see no vested interest, in continuing to throw any degree of support behind the Bush Administration.
So, there's a period of political realignment already under way. And this Social Security fight—when Lyn said this morning, that winning decisively on this issue will turn Bush into an instant lame duck: There are other political institutions that are ready, under Lyn's leadership, to step into that void. Increasingly, people are recognizing that the U.S. economy is in the trash-barrel; that the dollar is already collapsed, and is about to go through an even deeper crash. And so, in a sense, the biggest challenge that we face right now, is actually educating people in American System economics. That is the biggest gap, even among the very best people we deal with inside the Democratic Party: that, the level of understanding, other than knowing that FDR is a banner that's a good banner to wave, the depth of understanding about infrastructure, about what Lyn is writing, is very shallow. But, the openness to learning these ideas, is there.
So, I think what's happening here is that a trans-Atlantic dialogue of the highest order is, in fact, taking place, because of Lyn's prominent role in this discussion. And you can take confidence in the fact, that this discussion here today, is going to resonate back in the United States, in a way beyond anybody's imagination.