Will There Be a Presidential Election?

 by Michael I. Niman ArtVoice 7/8/04

It’s becoming perfectly clear that if all eligible voters are allowed to vote in the upcoming US presidential election, and if all of those votes are properly counted, George W. Bush’s political career will be over.

Fool Me Once…

Former Bush voters are popping up everywhere, proclaiming their plans to switch over and oppose the man who duped them. Old school conservatives are appalled at Bush’s neo-liberal trade policies and his assault on civil liberties and the constitution. Pious evangelicals are speaking out about all the lies, greed and mistreatment of the poor. The Gipper’s son, Ron Reagan Junior, just issued a strong endorsement for “anyone but Bush.” Nascar’s son-of-god, Dale Ernhardt Junior, recently admonished a million Fox Sports viewers to follow in his footsteps and go see Michael Moore’s Bush-bashing film, Fahrenheit 9/11.

Log Cabin Republicans, the Gay and Lesbian wing of the GOP, ain’t gonna be there doing their usual shameless Quisling routine for W like they were four years ago – not with Bush publicly opposing their rather conservative yearn for nuclear families. On the other side of the culture-wars stand conservative American Muslims who supported Bush’s Ayatollah-like cultural agenda and donated heavily to his last election bid. They’ve since defected en-mass to the “anyone but Bush” camp. Their beef is obvious, with Bush’s foreign policy appearing to most of the Islamic world as the “crusade” Bush initially described it as, and with his domestic policy stripping Muslim-Americans of their basic rights while Muslim non-citizens face indefinite detention.

The list of rats jumping off the sinking Bush ship is impressive, with scores of former administration officials, CIA spooks and military brass among the defectors. Conservative stalwart Pat Buchanan is currently putting the finishing touches on an anti-Bush book. Twenty six ex-diplomats and former military commanders, including many who served in the Reagan and Bush I administrations, recently issued a statement warning that the current Bush administration has damaged national security and should be defeated in November. Average Americans who don’t often talk politics are publicly proclaiming their own personal defections to the anti-Bush camp with an almost religious fervor.  

Bush’s Invisible New Flock

By contrast, there’s not a single Gore voter out there testifying that they’re switching over to Bush for this election. No apathetic non-voters are rushing to register because they’re wooed by Bush’s dynamic leadership and vision. Young first-time voters aren’t jumping on the Bush bandwagon because they’re excited about being drafted or having their college financial aid diverted to Iraq.

Look at this quantum political shift and then do the math. The last election, by any account was close. Recount controversies aside, no one questions the fact that nationwide, Bush got a half million fewer votes than Al Gore.

New electronic voting machines manufactured by Bush-connected companies, with their security holes, secret programming and lack of recount accountability, may play a role in giving Bush a boost in battleground states like Ohio or Georgia – but more and more Americans are becoming wise to these Trojan Horses, with California leading the way and decertifying them for the upcoming presidential election.

Likewise, the cat is out of the bag on the systematic disenfranchisement of black voters. The Miami Herald, for example, just published (7/3) an expose about a recent Florida purge of eligible registered black voters from the election roles – something they didn’t report about until after the last Florida presidential election. The disenfranchised around the US are now beginning an uphill battle to regain their rights to vote in November. Toward this end, nine members of the US House of Representatives have recently petitioned the UN to send election observers to monitor the November election in hopes of preventing a repeat of the 2000 election fiasco.

IF We Have Elections

The fear is real. If we have fair elections, Bush is certain to lose. But there’s a big if here. History has shown that regimes that come into power in the way the Bush junta did, seldom relinquish power in a fair electoral process. Given the current political realities, we can’t even take it for granted that there will be an election.

I started floating this idea a few months ago, but I never put it into print. It seemed like the kind of thing paranoiacs would discuss over beer. I added a military coup to the theoretical mix. It made for interesting conversation going something like this: Bush, facing a hopeless election, declares martial law over some Code Red event, canceling the election, with the military moving in and removing him from power, probably installing Kerry, who shows great promise as a lapdog. A subsequent “election” would rubber stamp the coup and the military would essentially continue to run the country as it more or less has since the Kennedy assassination. Yeah, this is crazy talk and I’d never put this out there as a bona fide theory, but given what we’ve seen during the last four years, anything is possible.

Then came last week’s quiet announcement by DeForest Soaries, the Bush appointed chair of a new federal election commission, that the US needs to establish guidelines for canceling the presidential election. Suddenly the unthinkable is on the table. According to the Associated Press, Soaries pointed to the recent election in Spain, which took place a few days after a terrorist attack, as demonstrating the need to deal with terrorists interrupting elections. Interestingly enough, the Spanish election went off without a hitch – except the pro-Bush government was voted out of office, leading to the subsequent withdrawal of Spanish troops from Iraq.

CIA: Osama Sweet on Bush

More alarming is a recent new book, "Imperial Hubris: Why the West is Losing the War on Terror." Unlike most anti-Bush whistle-blower tracts, this one is written by a current CIA agent presently in service to the agency. Hence, in order for Imperial Hubris to be published, it had to be cleared by top CIA brass and published with the author’s name removed. In short, the CIA had to approve the book, making it more of an official tract than an expose.

One of the tenets of Imperial Hubris is that al Qaida wants the Bush administration to remain in power. According to the book, Bush is the ideal American president for al Qaida. All of his foreign policy actions serve to strengthen the terrorist group which feeds off of the anti-American sentiment generated by what much of the world views as Bush’s war on Islam. In this vein, the author(s) worry that al Qaida might attack the US with the aim of forestalling regime change in this country – possibly with a pre-election terror strike such as the one Soaries says could cause pretext for canceling the election.

If there’s one thing that the events of the last few years clearly demonstrates, it’s that the Bush administration is a criminal regime hell bent on solidifying its power – American political traditions be damned. Given the combination of a regime desperate to stay in power by any means, a foreign terrorist army ostensibly desperate to keep them in power, and a US military and intelligence community seemingly anxious as hell to be rid of them, this election season promises to be anything but dull. Or maybe Soaries is just a worrier and the CIA is full of shit – in which case we should start preparing to deal with four years of John Kerry and a kinder gentler corporate scheme for world domination.


Michael I. Niman’s previous columns are archived at www.mediastudy.com

ęCopyright 2004

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