by Stephen Lendman
Obama represents the worst of rogue governance. On April 10, he honored Lyndon Johnson. One war criminal paid tribute to another.
He spoke at his Austin-based Presidential Library and Museum. He did so commemorating the 50th anniversary of the 1964 Civil Rights Act.
His words rang hollow. The New York Times called his speech "stirr(ing)." It stopped short of denouncing his duplicity. More on what he said below.
America's human and civil rights record is by far the world's worst. No other nation matches its lawlessness. None approach it.
It's by far the world's most unprincipled. It's responsible for virtually every crime imaginable and then some.
It's police state than democracy. It's more battleground than homeland.
Lawless FBI, CIA, NSA, FEMA, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Border Patrol, and other federal operatives work jointly with state and local authorities.
They target fundamental freedoms. They harm their own people.
Anyone can be arrested, charged, prosecuted, and imprisoned for any reason or none at all. US citizens at home or abroad can be murdered. Obama can order them killed by presidential diktat.
Others can be arrested and detained. They can be held indefinitely. They can be thrown into military dungeons. They can be denied civil justice. They can be held uncharged.
Innocence is no defense. State terrorism is official policy at home and abroad. Police states operate this way. America is by far the world's worst.
Freedom, human rights, and other democratic values don't matter. Supporting right over wrong is hazardous.
Challenging Washington's right to dominate globally risks persecution or death. America is unfit to live in. Things go from bad to worse.
Obama exceeds the worst of his predecessors. Rogue governance defines his agenda. Humanity may not survive on his watch.
On July 2, 1964, Lyndon Johnson signed the Civil Rights Act into law. Officially it's called:
"An act to enforce the constitutional right to vote, to confer jurisdiction upon the district courts of the United States of America to provide injunctive relief against discrimination in public accommodations, to authorize the Attorney General to institute suits to protect constitutional rights in public facilities and public education, to extend the Commission on Civil Rights, to prevent discrimination in federally assisted programs, to establish a Commission on Equal Employment Opportunity, and for other purposes."
It was more feel good than do good. Objectives fell short of promise. They were more hype than reality. They weren't achieved. Things today are worse than ever in modern times.
On June 11, 1963, Jack Kennedy called for legislation "giving all Americans the right to be served in facilities which are open to the public…"
He included "hotels, restaurants, theaters, retail stores, and similar establishments." He urged "greater protection for the right to vote."
Segregationists kept legislation from being enacted. Bottling it up in committee works as intended.
Kennedy's November 22, 1963 assassination changed things. Johnson was a former Senate Majority Leader. He was a powerful mover and shaker.
He wielded bully pulpit power as president. He supported civil and voting rights legislation. On November 27, 1963, he told Congress:
"No memorial oration or eulogy could more eloquently honor President Kennedy's memory than the earliest possible passage of the civil rights bill for which he fought so long."
Enactment of legislation he sought followed. Designed to prohibit discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, or national origin fell woefully short.
Powers enacted were weak. They remain so. Equal protection under law is more fantasy than real. It's a figure of speech.
Millions of persons of color bear witness. Muslims in America at the wrong time know the sting of US injustice. They're persecuted for praying to the wrong God. Constitutional protections don't help.
Johnson's July 2, 1964 statement rang hollow. He called signing the Civil Rights act a "proud triumph."
"Americans of every race and color have died in battle to protect our freedom," he said.
They died for imperial lawlessness. More than ever today. Johnson didn't explain. Nor presidents following him.
"Americans of every race and color have worked to build a nation of widening opportunities," he said. For America's rich, well-born and able alone.
"Now our generation of Americans has been called on to continue the unending search for justice within our own borders," he added.
It's selectively given. America has the best democracy money can buy.
"We believe that all men are created equal," said Johnson. "Yet many are denied equal treatment."
The vast majority do today. A select few benefit. They do so at the expense of all others.
"We believe that all men have certain unalienable rights," said Johnson.
"Yet many Americans do not enjoy those rights." Overwhelming numbers enjoy few today.
Freedom is an endangered species. It's disappearing in plain sight. Tyranny is on a fast track toward replacing it. International, constitutional and US statute laws don't matter.
Democracy is pure fantasy. A year after civil rights legislation passed, the Voting Rights Act followed. On August 6, 1965, Johnson signed it into law.
It nominally supports 15th Amendment protections. They prohibit federal or state governments from denying citizens voting rights based on "race, color, or previous condition of servitude."
On February 3, 1870, it was ratified. Fulfillment didn't follow promise. Nor from the 1965 Voting Rights Act.
US voting rights were constitutionally flawed by design. America's founders enfranchised adult white male property owners only.
Laborers were excluded. So were women. They were considered homemakers and child-bearers alone. Slaves were called property, not people.
Native Americans, free Black men, apprentices, felons, and persons considered incompetent were denied.
From inception to today, US elections were never open, free and fair. Big money controls them. Electoral fraud is rife.
Things are pre-scripted. Voters have no say. Secrecy and back-room deals substitute for a free, fair and open process.
Candidates are pre-selected. Monied interests own them. Key outcomes are predetermined. America is a one-party state.
Republicans and Democrats are two sides of the same coin. Not a dime's worth of difference separates them.
Independent candidates are shut out. Media scoundrels ignore them.
Issues mattering most are unaddressed. Horse race journalism and trivia substitute.
Millions of Americans are disenfranchised. Criminal records alone exclude many. Effort to suppress minority voters are rife.
Half of eligible voters opt out. They do so because interests they most care about go unaddressed.
Because candidates from either party don't care. Because corporate-controlled touchscreen electronic voting machines are rigged.
They're programmed using secret software. They're easy to manipulate. They steal elections.
They provide no receipts. Excluding them prevents vetting. Opponents end up with voter choices. Losers are declared winners.
Partisan politics serves privileged elites. Democracy is pure illusion. It's a figure of speech. It bears repeating. Americans get the best one money can buy.
Supreme Court rulings affirmed it. One dollar = one vote. Deep pockets cast many. It's the American way. It shams the right way.
Commemorating civil rights legislation ignores today's deplorable conditions. Duplicitous Obama rhetoric highlighted the disgraceful state of the nation. He called expressing them "a singular honor."
Doors "swung open for" him, he said. "That's why I'm standing here today," he added.
"…I have lived out the promise of LBJ's efforts." He spoke at the end of a three-day summit. It commemorated civil rights law. Carter, Clinton and GW Bush spoke earlier.
None connect to popular struggles. Jim Crow never touched their lives. Human and civil rights eroded on their watch.
So did other fundamental freedoms. They did nothing to prevent it. They support wealth, power and privilege. Ordinary people don't count. People of color least of all.
Clinton signed the repressive 1996 Anti-Terrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act (AEDPA) into law. It violates constitutional protections.
It compromises habeas rights. It limits judicial relief. It assured more capital punishment for innocent victims.
Nearly always, people of color, Muslims, or others among society's most disadvantaged are affected.
Clinton lied calling AEDPA "an important step forward in the federal government's continuing efforts to combat terrorism."
Its enactment had nothing whatsoever to do with it. International or homegrown terrorism is a ruse.
Clinton said he requested legislation after Oklahoma City. On April 19, 1995, a massive explosion destroyed its downtown Murrah Federal Building.
It killed 168 people. Hundreds more were injured. A 16-block area was affected. Over 300 buildings were destroyed or damaged.
Elgin Air Force Base's Armament Wright Laboratory studied the incident. No single truck bomb caused it.
Former director/explosives and ordnance expert/(Ret.) Brig. General Benton K. Partin was in charge. His report was damning. In part it said:
"Indeed, a careful examination of photographs showing the collapsed column bases reveal a failure mode produced by (internally installed) demolition charges and not by a blast from (a) truck bomb" as claimed.
Additional forensic evidence showed other devices were involved. Official reports suppressed what happened.
Lies substituted for truth. It's longstanding US practice. So-called terror plots are state-sponsored. 9/11 is Exhibit A.
Bush administration police state laws followed. Civil and human rights were targeted. They were eviscerated.
Patriot Act legislation alone gutted Fifth and 14th Amendment due process rights.
First Amendment ones eroded. Anyone can be wrongfully accused. Prosecutions can claim membership in, association with or support for so-called "undesirable groups."
Fourth Amendment protections against illegal searches and seizures no longer exist. Unchecked surveillance was authorized.
Powers include accessing personal financial, medical and other records. So-called "sneak and peak" searchers are OK.
"Delayed notice" warrants were approved. Warrantless searches became standard practice.
So were roving wiretaps, email and text message tracking, as well as Internet and telecommunications monitoring.
Prosecutions include secret evidence withheld from defense counsel. It's officially OK. It's common police state practice.
Guilt by accusation follows. For the first time, so-called "domestic terrorism" became a federal crime.
Virtually none exists. Numerous innocent victims were charged. They languish unjustly in America's gulag. Hundreds, perhaps thousands, of other political prisoners do so.
Patriot Act legislation began things. Other harsh measures followed. Homeland Security is America's Gestapo.
It operates ruthlessly. It does so extrajudicially. It targets innocent victims. It lies calling them terrorists.
Military commission legislation gutted civil protections. It grants extraordinary power to detain, interrogate, and prosecute alleged terrorists extrajudicially.
It legalized torture. Bush made it official US policy. It continues under Obama. He exceeded the worst of all his predecessors.
He presides over a repressive police state apparatus. Big Brother watches everyone. Mass surveillance is official US policy.
Fake war on terror persists. Rule of law principles don't matter. Nor democratic values. Human and civil liberty violations are rife.
Administration policies are the most secretive in US history. Whistleblowers are ruthlessly targeted. Exposing government lawlessness was criminalized.
So is protesting for fundamental constitutional rights. Tyranny is official US policy. Executive diktats can declare martial law.
Constitutional law can be suspended. It can be abolished altogether. Federal troops can be deployed against ordinary people.
Peaceful protests are endangered. National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) legislation authorized indefinite detentions.
Anyone can be held without charge or trial. Solely based on suspicions, baseless allegations or none at all is OK.
Presidents have unchecked authority to arrest, interrogate and indefinitely detain law-abiding citizens. They can target anyone they wish. They can do it extrajudicially.
No one is safe. Due process, civil protections, and judicial fairness don't apply. Abuse of power replaced them. Obama endorses them.
He mocks legitimacy. He governs lawlessly. His duplicitous civil right rhetoric rings hollow. His agenda bears witness to his lies.
'No one knew politics and no one loved legislating more than President Johnson," he said .
"He was charming when he needed to be, ruthless when required."
"Those of us who've had the singular privilege to hold the office of the presidency know well that progress in this country can be hard and it can be slow, frustrating. And sometimes you're stymied."
"You're reminded daily that in this great democracy, you are but a relay swimmer in the currents of history, bound by decisions of those who came before, reliant on the efforts of those who will follow to fully vindicate your vision."
"But the presidency also affords a unique opportunity to bend those currents by shaping our laws and by shaping our debates, by working within the confines of the world as it is, but also by reimagining the world as it should be."
Obama's demagoguery wore thin long ago. Duplicity substitutes for truth. His deplorable record speaks for itself. He's a world class con man.
He's a war criminal multiple times over. He's a serial liar. He's a moral coward. Throughout is tenure, he waged war on freedom.
He's gone all-out to destroy it altogether. He deplores equity and justice for all. He's beholden solely to monied interests.
He supports wealth, power and privilege. He's mindless of popular needs. He trashed human and civil rights throughout his tenure.
He represents the worst of rogue governance. His agenda is state terrorism writ large. His worst crimes go unpunished.
He's got nearly three more years left in office. Humanity may not survive his onslaught.
Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
His new book is titled "Banker Occupation: Waging Financial War on Humanity."
Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com.
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