Rocky Anderson is one of the most appealing, and accomplished, progressive politicians in the history of the United States of America, and he’s running for president. However, the only widely recognized ‘Rocky’ amongst American voters is Rocky Balboa. Thus, Rocky Anderson can only compete for the highest office in the land if he gains prominence thru moneyed interests because America is owned by capitalists’ democracy.
According to the American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, a capitalist is: An investor of capital in business, especially one having a major financial interest in an important enterprise.
Capitalism knows how to spot lucrative (important) enterprises that pay dividends, and capitalists cherish the biggest dividend payer of all… politics; the proclivity of capitalists to invest in politics to earn dividends is as old as American democracy, ever since the Colonial era.
It would be unworthy to ignore the influence of money in politics since America’s break with colonialism under the tutelage of King George III, when the plutocrats of the day wrote the Constitution, e.g., George Washington was the richest man in America (and he is the richest-ever president, in 2010 dollars, according to Forbes’ Richest President’s List); he owned 8,000 acres at Mount Vernon in Virginia alone and thousands more acres in several surrounding states like N.Y. and KY; he was also a banker and a money lender and an owner of more slaves than anybody could count. Washington’s earnings equaled 2% of the total U.S. budget in 1789. Whereas, James Madison, the Father of the Constitution, only owned a 560-acre plantation and 9 slaves. He was a poor-rich-man at the time. Most of the framers of our Constitution, similar to Congressional members today, except for Bernie Sanders and Dennis Kucinich, were/are multi-millionaires based upon today’s dollars.
But, what distinguishes today’s politics from the revered past is the breadth and depth of investment by capitalists in the enterprise of politics, and it has, indeed, become an investment, similar to financing a corporate enterprise. We all know how venture capital works: First one finds angel investors or family members for seed capital, then, come the venture capitalists who take turns at various rounds of money invested, depending upon how the business grows, and then, a listing on the New York Stock Exchange, where the Venture Capitalists sell out to the public, who pay top dollar to the original capitalists. The political process today mimics venture capital investment in enterprise and reaches the same conclusion with the voters buying into the venture capitalists’ investments, i.e., candidates.
The American tradition of moneyed interests controlling politics is as deep as the county is old, more so today than ever before, and the only way to combat this tradition is to fight back with… yes, money!
Enter Rocky Anderson (Justice Party); a political maverick if ever there has been one, a man who refuses to accept campaign donations over $100 from any one donor. He is the Rocky Balboa of today’s politics, and his candidacy is strikingly similar to the storyline behind the movie “Rocky,” a small-time boxer who gets a shot at the heavyweight championship, and it is a story ironically similar in so many respects to the American Horatio Alger rags-to-riches story that predominates capitalistic dogma, a mythology that perpetuates middle class presumptions about getting rich. This is the only logical conclusion for why middle class people vote for rich Republicans, idolizing the people who represent their dreams of achieving wealth, the All-American solution to happiness. These are the same Republicans who have cleverly, over three decades, shifted their own taxes away from the federal government, resulting in massive annual deficits and soaring national debt for all to bear, witness: Federal tax receipts as a percentage (14%) of Gross Domestic Product are at 50-year lows, starving the federal government of adequate funding, the antithesis to investing in an enterprise.
At the very least, one would expect the middle class to vote 100% democrat… why they vote republican is a mystery even though the two parties are so close in policy, but hey, how about 100% voting for Rocky Anderson! If this happened, Rocky would become President of the United States of America!
There are no candidates for president who have the breadth of political accomplishment and progressive credentials to match Rocky Anderson, a Mister Rogers look alike, whose gentle, but firm, voice resonates deeply in any venue. This is the man who took on ‘W’s Administration, before, during, and after the Iraq invasion, traveling across the land crying out for impeachment, testifying before the U. S. House Judiciary Committee: “There has never been a more compelling case for impeachment.”
Rocky’s indomitable, audacious opposition, coast-to-coast in speeches and public meetings, calling for impeachment, earned him the accolade, “One of the most outspoken critics of the Bush Administration and the Iraq War,” by Democracy Now’s Amy Goodman, proof positive of his political courage.
He is one of America’s progressive bulldogs, never letting go in the face of improprieties by public officials, publicly opposing Reagan’s efforts to overthrow the government of Nicaragua and going so far as to organize two trips to Nicaragua for dozens of Utahans to see first hand what was happening in Nicaragua.
Rocky is unabashedly progressive in every aspect of life. As mayor, he turned Salt Lake City into one of the Greenest cities in the world, internationally renowned for his Salt Lake City Green Program, he achieved 31% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions from municipal operations in 3 years; dramatically improved efficiency of the city’s fleet; established a bicycle and pedestrian friendly city; established cogeneration plants, doubled recycling, and recaptured methane gas from landfills to generate electricity, committing Salt Lake City to the Kyoto Protocols, surpassing Kyoto standards seven years ahead of schedule. WOW! If only America could do the same, setting an example for the world, we might not spend so many sleepless nights worrying about lonely polar bears floating on tiny ice flows.
Renowned as the “Greenest Mayor in America,” he lives what he preaches, including xeriscaping his yard, solar panels, cold-water detergent, fluorescent bulbs, and a natural gas-powered car. He has won more awards and honors for positve accomplishments than the Los Angeles Lakers and the Boston Celtics, combined, have won world championships, including Business Week naming Rocky one of the top twenty activists in the world on climate change.
In spite of all the accolades, Rocky has a mountainous task ahead of him if he is to prevail as the 45th president of the United States, and like the great sigh of relief that swept the land when George W. Bush left office, once voters thoroughly understand Rocky’s platform, there will be another great sigh of relief if he pulls off the most remarkable political coup in the history of U.S. politics, and if anybody can do it, he has the credentials and the stamina as a proven winner.
The only possible way for Rocky to win the presidency is if all of America’s progressives come to his support. His web site is: www.voterocky.org
On Super Tuesday he is planning a Moneybomb, asking supporters to join his campaign and send his message to 5 friends, and maybe they’ll pledge as well. Don’t worry if you miss the Tuesday date… you can still pledge.
Look at it this way: If 1,000,000 progressives donate (there must be several million progressives in America… aren’t there?), and if each can afford $100 (the maximum pledge), Rocky will receive $100 million in pledges, and he’ll be a ‘player in capitalistic democracy’. He’ll be able to compete with Obama and Mitt head-to-head, and they’ll be obliged to bring him into the presidential debates, knowing how money ‘speaks’ in American politics; after all, it’s a tradition started by our Founding Fathers.
With Rocky’s $100 million, the established parties will look foolish if they do not let him participate in the debates because he will have earned his way in. Yes, the $100 million will for sure buy him a spot in the national spotlight on stage in debate against Mitt and Obama. How could it not since the entire election is based upon who has the most money to compete?
If Rocky succeeds, that is if he gets the $100 mil, which will buy his way into the debates (imagine the revolt by the wealthy if $100 million is not enough to get someone into the debates; they’ll fear for their own candidates in the future) the American public will hear what he has to say.
AND, his message conforms to everything the 99% stand for… the 99% will fall in love with him because he walks the talk, a rare politician who actually puts his rhetoric to work, accomplishing what he preaches, and his platform is pure progressivism or as they say Down Under, The Third Way, i.e., entrepreneurship in combination with social justice, equal opportunity, public-private partnerships, emphasis on human capital rather than financial capital whilst safeguarding the environment.
Once America grows to understand him as the only healthy political solution in a very sickly political climate challenged betwixt democrats and republicans, Rocky Fever will infect the country from coast-to-coast, and he’ll win the presidency! BUT, it may be 2016, not 2012.
November 29, 2011, Rocky announced via the Salt Lake Tribune: “I’ll be announcing my candidacy,” for the 2012 presidential nominations of a new national party. He formally accepted the 2012 presidential nomination of the Justice Party on January 13, 2012.
Robert Hunziker earned an MA in economic history at DePaul University. He lives in Los Angeles.