Does America Need an Egyptian-Style Non-Violent Revolution?

George Washington's picture

Washington’s Blog

Yesterday, I pointed out
that the the Egyptian protesters are acting more like the free people
which America's Founding Fathers envisioned than the American people ourselves.

New York Times' columnist Bob Herbert agrees, apparently calling for an Egyptian-style non-violent revolution in America:

the throngs celebrated in Cairo, I couldn’t help wondering about what
is happening to democracy here in the United States. I think it’s on
the ropes. We’re in serious danger of becoming a democracy in name only.

millions of ordinary Americans are struggling with unemployment and
declining standards of living, the levers of real power have been all
but completely commandeered by the financial and corporate elite. It
doesn’t really matter what ordinary people want. The wealthy call the
tune, and the politicians dance.




The poor, who are
suffering from an all-out depression, are never heard from. In terms of
their clout, they might as well not exist. The Obama forces reportedly
want to raise a billion dollars or more for the president’s
re-election bid. Politicians in search of that kind of cash won’t be
talking much about the wants and needs of the poor. They’ll be
genuflecting before the very rich.


In an Op-Ed article in
The Times at the end of January, Senator John Kerry said that the
Egyptian people “have made clear they will settle for nothing less than
greater democracy and more economic opportunities.” Americans are
being asked to swallow exactly the opposite. In the mad rush to
privatization over the past few decades, democracy itself was put up
for sale, and the rich were the only ones who could afford it.




As Jacob Hacker and Paul Pierson wrote in their book, “Winner-Take-All
Politics”: “Step by step and debate by debate, America’s public
officials have rewritten the rules of American politics and the American
economy in ways that have benefited the few at the expense of the


As if the corporate stranglehold on American
democracy were not tight enough, the Supreme Court strengthened it
immeasurably with its Citizens United decision, which greatly enhanced
the already overwhelming power of corporate money in politics. Ordinary
Americans have no real access to the corridors of power, but you can
bet your last Lotto ticket that your elected officials are listening
when the corporate money speaks.


When the game is rigged
in your favor, you win. So despite the worst economic downturn since
the Depression, the big corporations are sitting on mountains of cash,
the stock markets are up and all is well among the plutocrats. The
endlessly egregious Koch brothers, David and Charles, are worth an
estimated $35 billion. Yet they seem to feel as though society has
treated them unfairly.




The Egyptians want to
establish a viable democracy, and that’s a long, hard road. Americans
are in the mind-bogglingly self-destructive process of letting a real
democracy slip away.


I had lunch with the historian
Howard Zinn just a few weeks before he died in January 2010. He was
chagrined about the state of affairs in the U.S. but not at all
daunted. “If there is going to be change,” he said, “real change, it
will have to work its way from the bottom up, from the people


I thought of that as I watched the coverage of the ecstatic celebrations in the streets of Cairo.

As I noted last year:

Many people think we just have to sit here and take it.


[But as liberal] PhD economist Dean Baker points out:

elites hate to acknowledge it, but when large numbers of ordinary
people are moved to action, it changes the narrow political world where
the elites call the shots.

It's not just liberals like Herbert or Baker who are saying this.

Ron Paul - who has very strong conservative credentials, and who won the Presidential straw poll at the Conservative Political Action Conference two years in a row - has repeatedly endorsed non-violent civil disobedience.

For example, Paul said to Congress in 2007:

true patriot is motivated by a sense of responsibility
and out of self-interest for himself, his family, and the
future of his country to resist government abuse of
power. He rejects the notion that patriotism means
obedience to the state. Resistance need not be violent, but
the civil disobedience that might be required involves confrontation
with the state and invites possible imprisonment.


Peaceful, nonviolent revolutions against tyranny have
been every bit as successful as those involving military
confrontation. Mahatma Gandhi and Dr. Martin Luther King,
Jr., achieved great political successes by practicing
nonviolence, and yet they suffered physically at the hands of the

In fact, Paul has repeatedly invoked Gandhi and King's vision of non-violent civil disobedience as the way to reclaim our freedom.

As I wrote in connection with the Egyptian revolution:

is just like when the British police attacked the non-violent
protesters led by Gandhi, or the police in towns in the South of the
United States attacked the peaceful protesters led by Martin Luther
King, Jr.

And as conservative writer Karl Denninger wrote yesterday:

There is a lesson in here for all individuals and nations. All governments exist only
with the consent of the governed. That consent does not have to be
"withdrawn" via unlawful force at-arms or even via the ballot box.


Indeed, it is most-effectively withdrawn when the citizens refuse to go to work!


The Beast of Government exists on tax revenues. ALL governments share this fundamental reality. ALL governments fail when the economic capacity to tax is destroyed. ALL
citizens give their consent to their government each and every day by
performing economic acts and thereby exposing that activity to


That taxation forms the essence of the functional capacity to govern. Period.


The people in all nations, at all times, reserve the right and the ability, through peaceful and lawful action, to destroy any government should it fail to comply with their demands and act in a sufficiently-onerous manner, and a minority
of the population is all it requires to effect this change. The
Soviet Union fell via this mechanism, East Germany fell via this
mechanism, and now Egypt has fallen via this mechanism.


No blood and no lawlessness were required.


fact, it was the pro-government goons that were engaged in violence in
an attempt to goad the people into acts that they could then use to
"justify" the excessive use of force. The government gassed the
protesters. The government was the one shooting people; rifles are
prohibited from private ownership in Egypt. The government was, as best
we can determine, the one raining Molotov cocktails on the protesters.
But the government failed to incite the protesters to violence, who
instead maintained their right to starve the government by refusing to provide it with the economic activity it needed to survive.


persons in all nations should be aware of the fundamental fact that
their government, no matter how oppressive, no matter how ugly, no
matter how allegedly-free or representative (or not) exists only because you rise from your bed each day and go to work.


day you stop, along with a sizable fraction of your neighbors and
friends, and instead wave signs and demand change, thereby shutting down
the engine of commerce is the day you remove through peaceful and lawful means the fuel that the government requires to operate.


"protests" in Washington and elsewhere fail to provide results
because the "or else" has not been provided along with the protest. We
come, we wave signs, and the next day we go home and go to work. If instead any sizable fraction of the population ... were to appear, wave signs, and go on strike until and unless the change demanded was made.... [then we win.]




If you live in Saudi Arabia, Jordan, or any other nation that has an autocratic and dictatorial regime, you
now have a blueprint to toss the jackals at the putative head of your
nation from their thrones without firing a single shot or drawing a
drop of blood.


I challenge the people of the world from Saudi Arabia to Jordan to China to do so.


those in The United States or other western nations who claim that we
are inexorably on a path toward civil disorder or even civil war due to
the outrageous looting of our nations that have been conducted by
financial interests with the full consent and complicity of our
governments, I simply point to Egypt.

As usual, this is not a question of left-versus-right.

war between liberals and conservatives is a false divide-and-conquer
dog-and-pony show created by the powers that be to keep the American
people divided and distracted. See this, this, this, this, this, this and this. Until we stop falling for this trick, we will remain powerless.

Instead, it is a question of the powers-that-be waging war on the freedom and wealth of the American people.

Wake up, liberals.

Wake up, conservatives.

Hear the whispers of the Founding Fathers ... and of Gandhi, and King, and the Egyptian people.

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tradewithdave's picture

Corporations are taking up the call for revolution.  It's spreading throughout the mall.  This is revolting ~ American style.


Dave Harrison



VyseLegendaire's picture

Anyone who thinks Egypt has had a serious revolution is fooling themselves.  Trading one puppet dictator for another, backed by the US-Israeli agenda, is not freedom at all.  Any government at all is a tyranny. 

blindman's picture

.  worlds of wonder  .

David Icke - Mind Revolution, Humanities Prison


The Recursive Game is the Policy


as pjb say, our "mileage may vary" but we can all get some mileage.

blindman's picture

@"does america need ..."


knightslk's picture

If you really want to start a revolt, everybody quit paying the banks. No house payment, no credit card. Pay as you go, the system would collapse in less than three months.  

Shed Boy's picture

If you REALLY want to revolt, stop paying your taxes!

Pemaquid's picture

The solution is obvious: get the big money out of elections.  Of course this is not going to happen because they are so entrenched.  Sad state of affairs.

contrabandista13's picture

NO....! NO.....! AND NO....!

I wholeheartedly disagree with Mr. Washington..... Liberty has never been won by peaceful means.... Never...!

All of the examples that he cited were of fringe activism, middle class, moderate, disobedience in support of the real agents of change.... These fringe activists were the ones who got all the praise and credit from the Main Stream Media... Gee, I wonder why?

The corrupt, the oppressors, exploiters, extortionists, blackmailers, thieves, murdering swine, their agents and collaborators must be eliminated or imprisoned for their crimes, and their institutions destroyed. Only when they cry in fear will they be defeated.

Liberty has never been won by peaceful means, not here, not in China, not in Egypt.... Mark my words....!

Best regards,


Confuchius's picture

Never, ever forget Chairman Mao:


"Political Power grows out of the barrel of a gun!"

George Washington's picture

Please see George Orwell's insights into violent revolution and technology.

New_Meat's picture

Postscript: George Orwell - author of 1984 - pointed out in the Tribune (October 19, 1945), the effectiveness of arms in preventing tyranny partly depends on whether the average citizen can afford the current weapon of choice possessed by the government:

GW, I was looking for Orwell's insight.  Instead this above.

'splain the Muj' and the VC and the ...

please, I want to learn.  Many friends want to learn.

- Ned

loup garou's picture

Since he has been cited for his legitimacy, this from libertarian (not "conservative") Ron Paul:


George Orwell wrote about “meaningless words” that are endlessly repeated in the political arena. Words like “freedom,” “democracy,” and “justice,” Orwell explained, have been abused so long that their original meanings have been eviscerated. In Orwell's view, political words were “Often used in a consciously dishonest way.” Without precise meanings behind words, politicians and elites can obscure reality and condition people to reflexively associate certain words with positive or negative perceptions. In other words, unpleasant facts can be hidden behind purposely meaningless language. As a result, Americans have been conditioned to accept the word “democracy” as a synonym for freedom, and thus to believe that democracy is unquestionably good.


The problem is that democracy is not freedom. Democracy is simply majoritarianism, which is inherently incompatible with real freedom. Our founding fathers clearly understood this, as evidenced not only by our republican constitutional system, but also by their writings in the Federalist Papers and elsewhere. James Madison cautioned that under a democratic government, “There is nothing to check the inducement to sacrifice the weaker party or the obnoxious individual.” John Adams argued that democracies merely grant revocable rights to citizens depending on the whims of the masses, while a republic exists to secure and protect pre-existing rights. Yet how many Americans know that the word “democracy” is found neither in the Constitution nor the Declaration of Independence, our very founding documents?
[Emphasis added.]


"Democracies have ever been spectacles of turbulence and contention; have ever been found incompatible with personal security or the rights of property; and have in general been as short in their lives as they have been violent in their deaths...".
~James Madison, Federalist No. 10, (1787)


"A wise man will not leave the right to the mercy of chance, nor wish it to prevail through the power of the majority. There is but little virtue in the action of masses of men."
~Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862) 


"Socialism is not a person, not a conspiracy, not even ideology any more. It has become a degenerative process that gradually eats away at a person's common sense and powers of reasoning, not unlike leukemia eats away red blood cells. The first symptoms are certain words and phrases - some quite innocuous - that creep into everyday use: reactionary, capitalism, exploitation, working Americans vs. the wealthy, private sector, human resources department, world peace, politically correct, social justice, economic justice, or calling people fascists… The next stage is a growing preoccupation with problems that, by definition, cannot be solved, such as disease, poverty or world hunger. Tangible and useful work in the community is replaced by blustery slogans that lead to inaction and the early emergence of megalomania, such a 8-year-olds who want to save the Earth instead of learning to write their names. In the adult world, it leads to politicians who, for example, preach about global warming, instead of providing the service they had been elected to perform…"
~Balint Vazsonyi  (who grew up under the national socialism of the Nazis and later the Communists)




New_Meat's picture

loup garou: seeing  things along same lines, I was commenting about the weapons being considered to be the determining factor vs. the (wo)men and the strategy/tactics.  See link.


- Ned

connda's picture

Unfortunately, peaceful non-violent revolution against tyranny will simply be met by a tyrannical, violent response by the government against the all protestors under the pretext of suppressing domestic terrorism. Once the average Joe is pissed off enough to rise up in mass, the reaction of the Federal government will be Kent State time 200 or 300. If and when it happens, the US will look more like Communist Russia than Communist Russia. But I hope not…

Future Jim's picture

I agree with your thesis points: The Egyptian protesters remind me too of the American revolutionaries. This is not a left or right issue, and TPTB are trying to divide us.

Then you immediately go completely off the rails and contradict your thesis by making arguments that are almost indistinguishable from Democratic Party shills:

You complain that the problem is that the rich now control the corridors of power in government while ignoring that, under the Constitution, for all practical purposes, there were no corridors of government power for the rich to control. That was the idea. It is only by greatly expanding government beyond the Constitution that we created corridors of government power for the rich to control. And now you are saying the solution is to expand the corridors of government power even more?!

You completely ignore the Tea Parties, who are peaceful protesters against corporate bailouts, QE, etc., and who, like the Egyptian protesters, are the victims of vicious slander by the mainstream media, and who are victims of coercion and sometimes violence from government employees and pro-government stooges such as SEIU. In fact, one of your favorite people to quote has been Paul Krugman, who is perhaps the angriest and most dishonest slanderer of the Tea Parties. He is usually among the first to blame the Tea Parties for every publicized act of violence - each of which was later discovered to be perpetrated by some form of angry leftist. Krugman was so mean and dishonest in response to the Giffords incident that even the mainstream media condemned him just a little bit, thus making it difficult for you to continue quoting him I have noticed.

You advocate strikes to starve the government of taxes, but strikes will not help us because the Fed can print as much money as the government needs to pay those on whom the government depends such as government employees and contractors, who will thus have little incentive to strike with us. Union members have sweet deals through their influence in the corridors of power in government and thus also have little incentive to strike with us. Government employees, contractors and union members already get most of their food and consumer goods from other countries, so they are not as dependent on private sector Americans as you think. Again you defeat your own thesis by advocating more government, which means the government would be even less dependent of private workers paying taxes than it is now, thus making your proposed strikes even less effective than they would be now. Also, we are already living beyond our means and thus have perhaps even less ability to strike than some third world countries.

Why do you always quote so many people? The quotes are rarely useful and often misleading. Can't you just form a coherent argument directly?

I would say you aren't fooling anybody, but then you are a poster on ZeroHedge, so you must be fooling somebody.

You and your supporters often reply with mean and dishonest ad hominem attacks.

At this point, I only read your stuff to stay informed of what those sneaky big government folks are up to now, which is the same reason I watch MSNBC and listen to NPR.

I offer some alternative solutions at

George Washington's picture

I would be happy with a Ron Paul like libertarian version of a very small government.  Or a Dennis Kucinich version of a government which helped people.

I'm not pro-government.  I AM pro-people.

Good point about corridors of power.

I quote Krugman when he says something I like.  I ignore him the rest of the time.  I have no idea what he said about Gifford.

New_Meat's picture
"Does America Need an Egyptian-Style Non-Violent Revolution?"

er ... Military takeover wasn't violent.

Military dissolves Parliament, suspends Constitution.

"New York Times' columnist Bob Herbert agrees,"

THE Paper of Record calling for revolution.

And, after all, Piven believes it to be a useful facade to pretent non-violence, but non-violence is not really necessary, e.g.:

GW--the kind of revolution  we can really believe in! WTF!

- Ned


George Washington's picture


The protesters DEMANDED constitution be torn up and Parliament dissolved, as first steps to purge the tyranny and start over.  Please get your facts straight. The parliament were Mubarak cronies, and the constitution said anyone can run for president as long as his name is Hosni Mubarak.

Thank you. Goodbye...

New_Meat's picture

"Please get your facts straight."

... er ... CNN and your own source not good enough for ya?

- Ned

DavidPierre's picture

Max interviews Catherine Austin Fitts. They talk revolution, Ben Bernanke and the US dollar being a unit of war.

"...Israel extorts the USSA's leaders..."

ebworthen's picture


GW said: 

"The war between liberals and conservatives is a false divide-and-conquer dog-and-pony show created by the powers that be to keep the American people divided and distracted."


Politics is the distraction.


Cistercian's picture

 Junked for a truth that is self evident in the US today.

  Not to mention the hurdles that prevent a normal person from running that isn't endorsed by the republicratic party.Tons of signatures and cash required.

  Note well how many who "serve" are millionaires.

 They do not serve me, or the other remaining 12 members of the middle class.

fragrantdingleberry's picture

Less than half of workers pay any income tax at the federal level and the liberals have insured that Americans will never revolt by plying the poor with welfare, food stamps, subsidized housing and a host of other handouts that keep them docile. On the other hand, the kleptocracy are the real parasites but as long as they keep giving the fleeced middle class professional sports and American Idol, there is nothing to worry about there either.

zebra's picture

FBI/CIA/NSA are watching you...

government control people by media and stock market. see what happen to the stock market when the 700B bailout was rejected? They plunge the market and the media start talking up how your 401K is going to be zero if no bailout....

I must say, we mostly J6P will succumb to government's control sooner than any other country, since most of us J6P have too much to lose. The revolution will only work when most of us have nothing or very little to lose when we take it to the street.

God bless America, and we need a leader like Ron Paul. God bless him to survive any plan to harm him by those you-know-what alphabet soup agencies. think of Lincoln and JFK.


onarga74's picture

"So, the first thing to do in regards to "commerce and state" is remove federal regulation of it."

Brilliant. Unshackle the love of money even more and you will want your government back.  Republican and Democrat is a dinosaur and the Tea Party invented itself out of disgust of both.  What hasn't begun yet is The Fee Party. It wasn't the government that was selling a nothing down American Dream tied to your unregulated CDS business. It wasn't the government that caused 60% of all bankruptcies that were medically related. But it is the government that is providing more borrowed money to make sure aapl keeps going up with the QE2 disaster. It isn't a market if there is only one side and that will be resolved shortly.  Bernanke thought he was smart by taking the other side of actions taken during the depression where liquidity was withdrawn.  He's doing the opposite  and that big chicken is gonna lay an egg.  History repeats itself even if you try to monkey with it.  Again, there must be a change to prevent commerce from buying preferential treatmen from the government.  Multinationals pay no tax to have all their garbage produced in China and we call Melody in Pakistan to repair it. The only thing we do with it here is put in a landfill. Go buy a freakin hose shutoff valve brought all the way from China and have it break in a week. That's real efficient. Not much carbon used there right? Eventually, people will understand that everything that is important is local. When we turn our attention back to safe and sound neighborhoods and turn off the constant information blast local will become healthy and that is most critical because that's where we live.

snowball777's picture

Did the government facilitate the growth of the TBTF through favoritism?

Did the government fail to regulate derivatives, prevent states from enforcing predatory lending law, and fail to hold rating agencies accountable for their tripe?

Did the government facilitate cost-shifting onto the backs of those BK individuals?


virgilcaine's picture

Military in charge = Democracy ?  400 Egyptian deaths so far equals Non Violent protest?  Must have been a different revolution.

zebra's picture

if Obama tell u it is democracy then it is democracy.

do you think we Americans have true democracy? think how many Americans oppose to bailout and it got passed.

ebworthen's picture

Question: "Does America need an Egyptian-Style Non-Violent Revolution?"

Answer:  YES

Now I'm going to read what you wrote.


b_thunder's picture
  • To starve the government?   Not if the Government can keep borrowing trillions!
  • The only mass gatherings we have in this country are @ Best Buy on Black Fridaay and Apple stores when new iPad is released.
  • In Egypt, peole have literally nothing else to lose but their chains, here 63% still own hosues, 75% have full-time jobs, and make no mistake here:  while in Egypt the Army didn't intervine and if anyhting protected the people, the troops of the newly created Northern Command (created under the pretext of a 100% UNCONSTITUTIONAL bill) and national Guard will use live ammo!  They may have killed 300 in Egypt, and a 82-year old dude decided that crappy job is not worth fighting for after 2 weeks.... Here in America our "leaders" are representatives of the ENTIRE RULING CLASS that will not fold like an 82-year old weary and tired "president."  The only way to change this system is a total economic colapse and prolonged depression, which the Fed and the Feds are fighting with enormous money printing.
Sathington Willougby's picture

OK we'll all stop paying our federal income tax, you first.

That way we'll get our democracy back.  Oh wait, it's not a democracy in the first place.


snowball777's picture

As a contractor, it's certainly an option for civ disobedience available to me, but how does J6P manage to avoid paying taxes when they're gone from his check before he sees it? Quit working?!

1fortheroad's picture

Its just getting started.

Restored America History
The plan is a bold achievable strategy for behind-the-scenes peaceful reconstruction of the de jure institutions of government without controversy, violence or civil war. After a national vote and approval by the body of Republic Assemblies, the plan is now in the implementation phase to accomplish the following:

Restore and reinhabit the de jure institutions of lawful government.
End the foreclosure nightmare (for borrowing against one’s own credit).
End tax prosecutions for resisting the transfer of private wealth to such as I.R.S. (former Puerto Rico Bureau of Taxation).
End street assaults against the sovereign People for failing to exhibit a State-issued confession of subject-class citizenship.
End all prosecutions which lack an injured party.
End admiralty prosecutions for kidnapping and other heinous crimes against mankind as “commercial crimes” against the corporate State under a contrived corporate color-of-law venue (corp. ref. 27 C.F.R. 72.11).
End the use of covert contracts such as Form 1040, car registrations, birth certificate applications, and bank signature cards which confess the signer to be a legal fiction subject of the United States Federal Corporation (“U.S. person”) that has waved his/her rights in favor of state-issued privileges.
End the use of deeds which classify the People as “tenants” on their own land, thereby transferring control to incorporated County registrars and tax assessors.
End the perversion of marriage into a commercial system of state-issued privileges through the so-called “marriage license” whereby incorporated “courts” presume the “right” to trespass on families and kidnap children.
End the hijacking of automobile ownership through DMV registrations which covertly exchange the divine rights of travel and ownership for the state-issued “privileges” of “driving” and “title.”
In place of all of the above, substitute sovereign identification, diplomatic immunity and sovereign passports to facilitate safe passage throughout the world free from corporate State molestation and terror.
Restore the People’s money and wealth from the banking institutions, war profiteers, and international loan sharks.
Instantly vest all mortgages, auto loans and personal business loans “issued” by members of the Fed. The state shall hold no paper on, or debts against, the sovereign People, directly or through its agencies and licensed banking institutions.
Instantly end all non-consensual and unlawful taxation including all taxes on the sacred rights of labor and privacy.
Empower and inspire the sovereign People to righteousness through such renewed abundance.
Issue orders to the military and police powers to enforce the Peoples’ divine rights of birth.
End the perverse act of requiring the People to pray to “courts” as is now required under corporate rules and traditions.
Restore the de jure judicial institutions including the district court of the United States and the one supreme Court.
Quietly mirror the strategies of 1933 thereby using their (our) institutions, military and public officials to undo eighty years of subterfuge without provoking alarm, controversy or armed conflict.
Forgive all corporate actors who repent for their State-sponsored crimes against mankind. Remove the recidivists from office.
Do all of the above, and more, peacefully, discreetly, quietly and honorably, behind the scenes, without public proclamations or provocative actions against a general public that is mostly unaware of the hijacking of their free de jure American republics, and their hapless media.

let-them-eat-cake's picture

I think you just made an Eff Bee Aye list somewhere. Protesting, especially peacefully, isn't very well liked..

CH1's picture

Joe Average still thinks he's getting something for nothing by supporting the state.

What chumps.

simpleminds's picture

I think it is another tactic of the government/elites to keep the majority of the people in the US either just a paycheck or two away from bankrupty or completely addicted to buying crap they do not need so that the thought of stopping work for a few months is beyond terrifying.  The Egyptions had nothing to lose economically speaking as they are mostly poor, so they might as well do what it takes to get a better deal.

dark pools of soros's picture

GW,  you need to define what an American IS these days.. that is the problem.  This country has been sliced and diced with no hope of uniting towards a collective purpose.

There are tranches for every flavor and level. Poor people in texas hate poor people in new york and poor people in the burbs aren't really poor so until you get atleast 40% or more on the same page you ain't going to see anything around here except the casino that the world comes to plunder


Vegas is still the current, main identifier of this country


falak pema's picture

The boat has to hit rock bottom for people to say Now we need change. Law of inertia ...; entropy. Just hope n pray it's not too late when the wake up call occurs...or else you finish like the pyramids under sand...or Constantinople in other people's dirty hands until they become clean from blood spilt over centuries.

Azwethinkweiz's picture

There will never be a revolution in the United States for two reasons:

1. American Idol

2. A population of mixed cultures where most call this their current residence, but not their home.

midtowng's picture

We do need a egyptian-style revolution, but not with the Tea-Party ideals that many Americans hold right now. We need a revolution that believes we can have a better, more responsive government that isn't captured by the wealthy elite. Not a revolution that says we need to tear down everything the government does to help people and make a bloated military empire even bigger.

topcallingtroll's picture

Libertarians are just as keen to get rid of huge military budgets. However we would need to quit meddling in, and "helping" other countries. We need to be neutral like the swiss. Are there a large group of terrorists going after the swiss? Something to think about.

snowball777's picture

Of course not; you don't terrorize your own banker...until you've pulled out your money.

topcallingtroll's picture

You will never get socialists and libertarians to agree on much because bob herbert's coercive solutions depend on a tyranny of the majority and huge transfers from productive people to the nonproductive. Bob talks too much about poor people and not enough about economic efficiency productivity moral hazard and equality under the law. Bob includes the hard working upper middle class as part of the "oppression" of the poor. I dont oppress anybody but i am in a business of high demand and significant bariers to entry. Let's guess my federal taxes next year at 70,000 or so. The quickest way to turn that 70,000 into 50,000 in federal taxes is to attempt to raise my taxes by a significant amount. I will take more vacation and the poor can wait four weeks.for my widgets instead of two. Bob herbert doesnt understand production and consumption at the margin.

I get angry when people like him lump me with the plutocrats. The oligarchy is not the working upper middle class. We dont like plutocrats either, those of us in the next five or ten percent down, and we would support freedom and equal protection under the law. Real libertarians.have little in common with herbert who targets me and my type as oppressors. Herbert has no idea what the various marginal propensities to produce are under various tax scenarios.and would make us all poorer.

If you want libertarian types to side with bob herbert and bernie sanders then you have to limit it to common ground such as ending moral hazard and socialization of losses. Getting rid of unnecessary barriers to entry and reducing my income that way is more rational, but all herbert knows how to do is redistribute and impoverish us all.

AN0NYM0US's picture

$2 a day, torture, rigged elections and the Egyptians went into the streets after 30 years and what do they get? a military coup (new boss same as the old boss)


Food Stamps, 99 weeks of employment insurance, numerous subsidies, a reasonably functioning judicial system, an opportunity to vote and become involved in the political process  does not = $2/day or a hot iron up your nostril if you speak out against TPTB


Are Americans being screwed over by the banksters who control the politicians, yes. Can they do something about it? yes but they won't  not as long as there is food in the pantry, a check in the mail box and an iPhone in every pocket


snowball777's picture

"...a reasonably functioning judicial system..."



serotonindumptruck's picture

Westerners will begin feeling substantially more "pain" now that a global tipping point has been achieved. The planet's carrying capacity has been exceeded, and now a die-off must commence.

BTW, the concern was never about bringing democracy or freedom to Egypt. Likewise for the rest of the ME.

This was always about securing the Suez. 

CH1's picture

"The planet's carrying capacity has been exceeded"

Are you serious?!! Half the planet is still empty. Hell, drive through the upper half of Pennsylvania, or the northern part of Florida... not to mention the west or the other 9/10th of the world.

The planet has plenty of capacity... it's just ruled by barbaric beasts called "states." If humans were left alone to work and keep their produce, things would work out fairly nicely.

But, so long as they worship states and willingly sacrifice their lives to them, we're screwed.

Confuchius's picture

States are the ultimate folly of man.

Until they are gone forever, there is no hope...