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Accountability: Just Do It

By Christiane Brown

As American citizens finally rise up and place our bodies on the gears of power and the avenues of commerce, rightly protesting against the nation's war mongers, corporate thieves, health insurance gluttons and mass polluters, the most important demand we make must be our call for accountability and justice.

This demand, above all others, is crucial in opening the floodgates of change and truly restoring America to a nation of laws and not men.

Until the stamp of felon is irrevocably emblazoned on the foreheads of our nation's criminal elite, their perfect storm of unrestrained power and hubris will continue to rage in this country. Only through the process of indictment, prosecution and incarceration will we be able to set in motion the systematic collapse of this lawless regime and remove the cloak of legitimacy that empowers it.

With more than 700 peaceful protesters mass corralled on the Brooklyn Bridge and 1252 Keystone XL demonstrators arrested during their two week protest in front of the White House, it is clear that the trend of incarcerating those who stand up to power will continue.

Isn't it time that we, the citizens, demand that the right people are put behind bars?

As our numbers swell across the country it up to us to finally demand redress for the glaring omission by the Congress, the Justice Department and the President of the United States to prosecute our nation's "most wanted," and force our legal system to shine an unwavering spotlight on the inside track of corruption that has dominated this country for over a decade.  

A massive outcry for investigations and trials of the elite one per cent who crashed the world economy, illegally waged a pre-emptive war with impunity, drained our treasury, rounded up and tortured enemy combatants, spied on American citizens, exposed the identity of a CIA counter terrorism operative, and allowed an American city to drown, would be a good start.

With this promising beginning, through the process of legal discovery, the stream of contaminated money flowing in and out of the pockets of the criminal ruling class will at last be revealed to the public and a game of connect-the-dots prosecution will ensue. As their sordid illegal transactions come to light and their sentencing commences, a veritable who's who of our nation's power elite will become water cooler fodder, and the wheels will begin to come off the cart.

With of reams of video, audio and paper evidence brought forward to convict them, the days of known criminals waltzing carelessly across the corporate media stage will come to end.

Imagine the gap in programming when enemies of state are no longer allowed dominate the public airwaves, shamelessly hocking their books, endorsing their political agendas and weighing in as "experts" on the multiple crises they manufacture.
Had Barrack Obama possessed the political courage to go after these criminals himself on day one of his presidency, the succeeding prosecutions and resulting shift in public sentiment would have empowered his administration and swept the obstructionists from his path.
Instead, desperate for a kind word on CNN and Fox, he betrayed those who elected him and kowtowed to the real force of power in this nation. Reaching across the aisle to appease the billionaire-backed congressional lap dogs, he squandered any hope we had of defunding our multiple wars, passing genuine heath care reform, seriously addressing the climate crisis, or preventing millions of American families from plunging into poverty.
Ask yourself this - how many bonuses and record profits would the Wall Street felons be capable of raking in with handcuffed wrists?

How many book tours, TV interviews, press junkets and $3,000 dollar a head dinners would George Bush, Dick Cheney, Condoleezza Rice or Donald Rumsfeld take part in, once they had been tried and convicted before the American people for war crimes and torture?

How many more voices would cry out for national health care with the CEO's of the major insurance companies indicted for widespread fraud and patient abuse?

When the heads of Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan Chase and Citibank use prison-issued aluminum toilets instead of golden ones, when Karl Rove is forced to e-mail his column to the Wall Street Journal from a jail cell, rather than a cozy American Crossroads office suite, when the Koch brothers and Eric Prince busily hammer out license plates, Don Blankenship stokes the prison furnaces and Dick Cheney is padlocked into his bunker, the guns of the corporatocracy will be effectively spiked and their power base fractured.

As the star players of the presiding junta are yanked from the national stage and the penitentiaries swell with their ranks, their long term agenda will also fall to the wayside; shrill cries for unfettered capitalism and union busting effectively drowned out by the clinking of ankle bracelets and the slamming of electronic cell doors.

And lastly, the disgraceful tea party movement, bereft of its billionaire backers, would wander leaderless for a brief time and quickly fritter out; even its misguided, loaded-for-bear "patriots" capable of understanding the significance of a jail cell.

Accountability. Just do it.

In the days and weeks to come, as righteous anger swells the throngs in the streets and plazas of our cities to overflowing, it will be our unwavering demand for accountability and justice that at last succeeds in ousting the criminal elite from the halls of power and forces the doors of this democracy to reopen to the people.

When crime and punishment again carry equal weight in the land of the free, the fog of deception that has been lingering over the eyes of the masses will at last begin to clear and our sleeping nation will awaken from its stupor to a restored age, where a long missing precedent will once again reign:

If you break the laws in this land, no matter the rank you hold, no matter the office suite you inhabit, you will be held accountable.

Our voices are powerful, our time is now, and their 15 minutes are up.   

We will see them in court.

Speaking Events



August 2-6: Peace and Democracy Conference at Democracy Convention in Minneapolis, Minn.


September 22-24: No War 2017 at American University in Washington, D.C.


October 28: Peace and Justice Studies Association Conference

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