Watch Cenk’s Speech Here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=udX-PhOTXVo
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TRANSCRIPT provided by Juebong Khwarg
First I view this as two issues here that I wanna discuss a little bit in my time. One is, are corporations people, and then two is amendment the right way to go. Let me just settle the first one in a minute.
How many people out there, show of hands, believe corporations are human beings. Ok and let the record note zero. That’s why I put on the glasses, right. Just to make sure.
How many people believe that corporations have inalienable rights endowed by their creator? The record note that again we have zero. And I know some are concerned, what if we take away too many rights from them? Woah. Let me gamble, let me try that risk and see how that turns out. I know what we have now, and it is an absolute disaster. That’s part of what I want to talk about here. So I might come back to the corporation issue but let’s address the amendment and if that’s the right way to go.
So I have good news and bad news for you guys. Let me start with the bad news ok? But don’t worry, we’re gonna get to the good news.
First in terms of the current state of our affairs in America, it is an absolute epic disaster. Right now we just voted on a bill where 91% of Americans were in favor of universal background checks on guns and we could not pass it.
Now here’s what people don’t like to hear but is an unfortunate, absolute reality. On the national level, we have lost our democracy. It does not exist. You know we grew up in America, we love America. I love the Steelers. I love subs and pizza and the flag. You know I love every part of it, right. I love Kentucky, I love Louisiana, I love New York, San Francisco, they’re all part of this great country etc. And we all believe, well obviously we live in a democracy except we don’t. It’s over. It’s over.
I was at a meeting of constitutional law professors in New York and I mentioned the idea of a convention. And an esteemed professor of law said, “Disaster”. He said, “We can’t have a convention”. Why? Well then we risk everything. What do we risk? We’ve already lost democracy. You’re not getting it.
Look. The people in this room get it, but so many Americans don’t understand. So for example, social security polls around 87%. Under no circumstances should you cut it. And it’s not a questionable poll. It’s not like, hey are you kind of in favor of social security? Do you kind of like social security? Do you like that your grandparents aren’t starving in the streets? It wasn’t like that. It was should we cut social security under any circumstance? 87% no. Under no circumstance, right. And what happened? We got a Democratic president suggesting cutting social security ‘cause he’d like to help the Republicans along. Alright, 84% don’t cut medicare under any circumstance. Don’t cut it. Don’t cut it. How clear can we be? Don’t cut it. And they wanna cut it. The Republicans and Democrats agree because we don’t have a democracy. They’ve already taken over the government. Why do they want to cut social security and medicare? Come on how easy is this? Who do you work for? You work for the guy who signs your checks.
So I’ve got really bad news for you. None of your representatives represent you. They represent the people who pay them. And the donors pay them, the lobbyists pay them. Yes the Republicans are as dirty and corrupt as it gets, but so are the Democrats.
So let’s talk about two Democrats for a second. How about the guy who promised us change? How’s that working out for us? Now he said, “I’m not gonna play the same old Washington games a little better.” This was in an ad. It was called Billy. I’ll get back to Billy in a second. He said, “I’m going to change the game.” Really? What have you done to change the game? You want to play it a tiny bit better? I mean this bill that we just had wasn’t even in universal background checks. It was a watered down, with riddled with loophole background check. And we couldn’t even pass that. And this was his best effort. No no no. He has no intention of changing a damn thing. This is the system that made him a multi-millionaire. This is the system that made him president. This is the system that gave him all the glory that he now basks in. He has no intention of bringing you change. He loves this system. What he craves most of all is a pat on the back from the establishment. So you’re waiting for a hero? Well we already had a hero who promised us overwhelming change and then gave us nothing.
Now I had a person who was young who came up to me at an airport and said, “I’m not gonna vote in the next election”. I said why? She said after Obama, what is there left to hope for? Now the next guy that comes and puts that sign up that says change, you gonna believe him? No we’re not gonna believe him. Because 9 out of 10, no 99 out of 100 times he’s a liar. He got money to lie to you. They’re playing good cop bad cop with you. Republicans are the bad cop, they come in and punch you in the face, then the Democrats come in and say aw I’m so sorry about my partner. If you just sign this piece of paper that says here I’ll cut social security and you cut medicare and a little more tax cuts for the rich, it’ll all go away. I’ll keep my bad cop away from you. I’ll be the good cop. I’ll even bring you a coffee. Are you alright? And then you sign the piece of paper and all of a sudden there goes your money to someone else.
Now one last thing about Democrats. Max Baucus, and this is gonna lead to the good news soon ok. Max Baucus has a one word answer for why he voted against universal background, sorry, background checks, not universal background checks. He said, “Montana”. Now let me tell you the real polling in Montana. 79% of the people of Montana are in favor of a universal background check. So the real one word answer that Max Baucus was looking for and is always looking for is money. That’s the one word answer.
Now how is this the good news? So President Obama is giving a speech at North Carolina and he gets to a point, this was back in 2010, and he says ok, healthcare it’s going great and we’re gonna do reform and I got a great Senator in the Senate leading the effort, Max Baucus. And at the University of North Carolina you get booed. Now how in the world did they know to boo Max Baucus? TV didn’t tell them. TV loves Max Baucus. Bi-partisan Max Baucus, isn’t he great? Well we all know Max Baucus is one of the most corrupt Senators in this country and that’s a tough battle to win.
So, now back to the bad news for a second, ok? Now part of that good news was hey, you learned, you’re here. There’s a lot of you here and there’s a lot that are watching online right now. There’s a lot who watch our show. And how do you find out? Because tv is part of the problem, the mainstream media, the establishment media, the politicians, they don’t represent us. They’re fake, they’re phonies. They’re part of the problem. But people got that memo. Not to toot our own horn here but I really use it as an example. The Young Turks just yesterday crossed a billion views online. So you wanna keep being fake, you wanna have your news actors get out their and read their scripts telling us how great Max Baucus is and how great the Republicans and the Democrats are? And how you should trust the government and you should trust the media? Have at it Hoss. I’m gonna keep kicking your ass day in and day out. They’re just giving me all of the audience. Because if you ask American people, part of the good news is, 90% say our politicians are corrupt. They are corrupt, they’re institutionally corrupt, they do it for the money and we all know it.
So back to the bad news. Now you’re telling me this Congress, this Congress is gonna pass resolution? They’re gonna pass bills fixing up the problem of money in politics. But you see what you’re not understanding is that they don’t think it’s a problem, they think it’s the solution. They’re never gonna pass it. I got bad news for you. They’re never, ever going to pass it. I mean disclose act as the weakest thing we had. Can we pretty please find out who’s bribing you? Can you just tell us who it is, please. We have 59 Senators, of course the Republicans filibustered it. That was the first time around. The second time around, a couple of years later after all the momentum and all the training and all the dogging and all this, 53 Senators. We lost six Senators. You’re not gonna win on the disclose act. You’re not gonna win on any act. Amendment, amendment, amendment. It is the only choice you have.
Yes you’re right, we should unite. You have to unite around an amendment. I don’t wanna unite around some weak sauce bullshit. I’m sorry to be harsh about it but you unite around, what are we doing. Oh hey look it’s a kind of a thing, a resolution that might, oh look hey. It was kind of successful, got 51 Senators and was filibustered. Congratulations, I’ll see you two years from now when you get 49 Senators. No you cannot rely on the federal government. They’re the bad guys. They’re not the good guys. They’re the ones, all of them, got success in this corrupt system by taking extraordinary money and using it not to our advantage, but to the advantage of the people who gave it to them. Are there some exceptions? Bernie Sanders is a lovely human being. Yes there are some exceptions. But Bernie Sanders, god bless him, ain’t gonna win the day, ok.
Now the good news. Wolf-PAC has been fighting on the local level. I went and talked to a state Senator from Maryland and you’re gonna be shocked at what happened. You know what happened? He listened to me. What? In all my years of covering national politics, I have never once heard a Senator say, good point. I changed my mind. Never. Why do you think it’s always empty on CSPAN when they’re always talking? ‘Cause they don’t give a damn. They’re not listening. You think we’re having a debate in this country? We’re not having a debate. The Heritage Foundation came up with a fig leaf so that they can vote in that direction and say, oh no no. It’s ok. I’ve got a think tank. I’ve got a think tank that told me it’s ok. But on the state level we have a shot.
Todd Jagger’s here, he’s our representative in Texas. He went and talked to a state rep and he said I’m with Wolf-PAC. And he says look, you’ve got a tough road to climb but I’ll take a meeting with you. You know why? ‘Cause you’re my constituent. Again, at the national level, you’re my constituent? If you don’t have a paycheck, if you don’t bring in a donation, they’re not gonna meet with you. So he comes in and he meets him and he says alright. He says it’s gonna be a tough road for you guys. I don’t know if a lot of people care about saving the wolves. Todd says, no no no. We’re not here to save the wolves, we’re here to save the republic. And you know what that state rep did? He introduced our resolution in Texas.
And just like David said, we had a, Todd had a gathering. There was a Tea Party across the street. First there’s progressives, they get together, they talk and everybody’s clapping, cheering, etc. Tea Party guys, I think they were doing a gun rally, they walk by, they hear it, and they say hey what are you guys talking about. Oh you think that the guys are corrupt and its crony capitalism, and it’s not really a free market, and the big companies have crushed the small companies? We totally agree. That’s right. This is the one thing we all agree on.
So the amazing part, I wish I had more time but let me wrap it up this way. Look the amazing part is that it can be done. So you can go through Congress but it ain’t gonna work. It’s not gonna work for the bills. Honestly, if you can get the Congressmen and the Senators to vote that way, bless your heart and I’m a hundred percent behind you. But the state level, it is shocking the degree to which they have listened to us and that they are willing to listen to their constituents.
So the great news is, at the local and state level, we still have a democracy. So let us act while we still have one. Grab your local state reps, state Senators . You can do it with Move to Amend. You could do it with Wolf-PAC. You could do it with Rootstrikers. You can do it with all of us. But this is the time for action.
We can do it. And I know we can do it because there’s been naysayers. And my god have I lived through the naysayers. I remember when we started The Young Turks in my living room and all we had was a mic and we had one piece of equipment to get the show over to New York. And if I told people them we’re gonna be the largest online news show in the world, well I did. And they laughed and laughed and laughed. We are the largest online news network in the world. You keep laughing while I keep doing. And if you had told me when we started that we’d be at a billion views, I would have laughed. Come on. A billion? I mean I would have thrown the biggest party in the world if I felt we had gotten to a hundred million. But we got to a billion because when somebody tells you it’s not doable, you can bet your bottom dollar they haven’t tried to do it.
You try to do it and you will be shocked at how doable it is because the one thing we all agree on is that money has corrupted our politics and we must get it out. Republicans agree, Democrats agree, Libertarians agree. If we all stick together we can do it, we will do it.
I just got a check, five dollar check from Miamisburg, Ohio saying for Christ’s sake, I don’t have much, but I’m gonna give you all I’ve got because if we stay together, we can do it. Thank you.
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