WARNING: this will probably anger both Biden and Trump supporters!
I keep on seeing celebrations and jubilation every time I open Facebook: the “monster” Donald Trump is defeated (maybe?) and Joe Biden will be the next president of the USA (maybe? and if yes for how long?).
I understand the joy; I’ve always disliked Trump for he represents everything I despise in a man. But these celebrations seem frankly excessive to me.
We should keep in mind who Joe Biden is and what his track record shows. So as not to be overwhelmed by our enthusiasm and forget that it is the duty of every citizen who believes in social justice, equality, love, compassion and creating a better and fairer world to keep the people in power in check. It is our duty to give Mr. Biden the same level of scrutiny and political pressure we gave Trump.
Joe Biden, we must always keep this in mind, was the vice president of the ‘Nobel Peace Prize’ Barack Obama. Another president celebrated as a hope for change in the USA. We all know how it went. The ‘Nobel Peace Prize’ (and his second in command), during his presidency dropped bombs on Afghanistan, Libya, Somalia, Pakistan, Yemen, Iraq and Syria. He green lit the “drone wars”, the “kill lists” and kept Guantanamo up and running (despite promising to do the opposite). He has imposed criminal sanctions against Venezuela, defined as an “unusual and extraordinary threat to national security”, armed the coup leaders in Caracas as well as in Managua in a failed attempt to overthrow the Sandinista government led by Commander Daniel Ortega in Nicaragua. Supported the lawfare operations in Latin America that led to the parliamentary coup against socialist president Dilma Rousseff in Brazil and the political killing of former Argentine president Cristina Kirchner (a center-left social democrat).
The Biden family has unclear links and deals with neo-Nazis in Ukraine. Hunter Biden – Joe’s son – joined the board of directors of Burisma Holdings, a Ukrainian gas company, in May 2014, with a salary of $ 50,000 a month. Biden’s son was chosen despite not speaking the language and having no particular experience in the energy field. But he was co-opted a few months after Obama’s decision to entrust his vice president with the task of following the political transition in Ukraine. Where by transition we mean the color revolution that brought neo-Nazis to power in Ukraine in place of President Viktor Yanukovych.
Then there is the infamous 1994 Crime bill which extended the death penalty to 60 new crimes, stiffened sentences, offered states strong financial incentives for building new prisons, and helped lead to the wave of mass incarceration (of mostly black men) that resulted in the United States accounting for 25% of the world’s prison population.
In short, sincere democrats and anti-imperialists have no reason to celebrate the election of Joe Biden other than he ain’t Trump. And please keep in mind the undying words of Gore Vidal: “American democracy is an eagle that has two wings: both right.”
So I invite you to listen to the wise words of the presidential candidate for the Green Party Howie Hawkins, when he states via his Twitter profile: “It doesn’t matter who sits in the White House, we will continue to fight for social justice, democracy and people(s)-centered human rights.”
That is the duty of every sincere humanist and faithful believer in democracy with the knowledge that the world can and must be a paradise for all.
So tone down the celebrations, and get ready to fight again because if Biden does step into the White house he will not not magically become a shining white knight. An indication of this is the fact that his campaign was largely financed, amongst others, by multiple Wall Street’s hedge funds and 44 billionaires (according to Forbes). According to bloomberg.com he raised almost 1 billion dollars (an all time record amount). These donors will put pressure on his presidency and no, they don’t have the people’s best interests at heart.
So PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE stay vigilant and don’t think that all that a healthy democracy requires is 15 minutes in a voting booth every four years and couple of celebratory memes on Facebook. It is a continuous struggle for knowledge and information and action against the powers that direct our political and social life, no matter who they are.
This said, and I’m pretty sure this is wishful thinking (but you never know), if old Joe should choose the UN Charter path instead of the old and already trodden path of bombs, sanctions and international crimes, I am ready to make amends and to become his first supporter. My wish is to be able to tell with amazement about the discontinuity policies applied by the Biden’s administration. It seems (to me) very difficult this can happen given the premises. But I don’t want to put limits on providence.