Political Freedom, Economic Fetters

        

Commentary by Dr. Gerhard Falk

        

Land of the Free

Any comparison between the rights of individuals in the USA and any other country reveals that this is indeed the only free country on earth. Admittedly, the democracies of the English speaking world accord their citizens a good deal more individual freedom than is true in the numerous ugly dictatorships which cover the globe. Nevertheless, the British system of government, which is imitated by almost all other so-called democracies, is far from allowing its inhabitants the free expression of opinion by guaranteeing the right of free speech, the right to a free press, the right to freedom of religion, the right to assemble, and the right to bear arms. All of these rights are included in the American constitution, but do not exist elsewhere.

While American presidents can normally serve only two terms, prime ministers can stay in office without any term limit so long as parliament does not vote a no confidence motion. Prime ministers are not elected by the voters but by the politicians in parliament. Therefore the government can ignore the voters and they do. In the British system, the government can censor books and other publications and the government an even overrule court decisions. In sum, we have the only country that is free of government dictates, although the Democrats seek to turn this country into a one party dictatorship.[i]

 


[i] Although Americans have more political rights than any other population , most Americans are nevertheless unable to enjoy these rights because they are economically dependent. This means that we are a nation of employees who are dependent on their jobs and are therefore subject to bosses who can dismiss anyone at any time. Fearing that they may not be able to support their families if they lose their jobs, millions of Americans have no freedom of speech, cannot protest governmental demands, may not express their views in writing, and hide their religious views lest they lose their jobs. The American labor force consists of 164 million women and men. Forty-eight percent of the labor force are women. Eleven  percent of the labor force are self-employed and therefore less dependent on the whims of bosses. More recently, even physicians and lawyers who were at one time independent practitioners are more and more working for large hospitals or legal organizations, so that these two professions are now largely subject to bureaucracies and bosses. That leaves only very wealthy business tycoons, some independent entrepreneurs, and that tiny group of college professors who have the unique privilege of lifetime tenure and the advantages of a paycheck, no expenses for an office, secretary, books, utilities etc. There are only 379,0000 professors in the USA . Of these, 182,000 are tenured. They are therefore the most privileged employees in America, outside of the superrich owners of large corporations who are billionaires, and federal judges.

Therefore it is sadly true that the land of the free and the home of the brave is hardly more than a phrase in a song.

Shalom uívracha.

 Dr. Gerhard Falk is the author of numerous publications, including The American Jewish Community in the 20th and 21st Century (2021).

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