Presidential Candidate: Marianne Williamson

Marianne Williamson campaign website: Marianne 2024 – A New Beginning

By Ashley Bean Thornton

I have been summarizing the opening campaign speeches from the presidential candidates. I have been trying to sift through the campaign rhetoric to pick out what they are saying about what they actually plan to do if they are elected.

Marianne Williamson started her speech by saying, “What I’ve learned in my life is that the first question isn’t always what do. The first question is often, “What do I need to understand? Before the United States, or any of us, can know what it is we need to do, we need to know what it is we need to understand.  This country is drowning in information and starving for understanding.”

These seem like wise words to me, but they do not help me in my goal to sift out what the candidates actually plan to do.  As you might imagine from an opening statement like that, her speech was a little short on statements about what concrete steps she plans to take to accomplish her goals.

I don’t think my summary below captures all she had to say – but I did the best I could to capture anything that sounded at all like something she plans to do.

I have shortened, rearranged, and paraphrased quite a bit, but I tried to stick pretty close to her own words and to be fair in summarizing what I assume to be her platform for 2024.   Due to Ms. Williamson’s speaking style, her answers are not as succinct as the ones I was able to pull out for some of the other candidates. – ABT

What she says she will do…

Corporate influence on government – The reason we have such a problem today is because it is not one specific institution that plagues us…  It’s like an atomizer spray of economic Injustice… The opponent is not a specific situation or circumstance.  The opponent is an economic mindset.

The opponent is an economic mindset that has had its grip on this country for the last 50 years. Over the last 48 years there has been 50 trillion dollars of wealth that has been transferred from the bottom 90 percent to the top one percent of people in this country. This country is now in the grip of an economic mindset whatever you call it – some people call it neoliberalism, some people call it free market capitalism, some people call it crony capitalism, some people call it hyper-capitalism.  It is neither real capitalism, nor is it a free market.  It is a sociopathic economic system.

It is a sociopathic economic system that in policy after policy after policy makes sure that those who already have, will probably get more. And those who do not have will have a hard time even surviving.

It’s time for us to look in the mirror as Americans and face the very painful fact that government “of the people, by the people, and for the people” is perishing.  This government is now a government of the corporations, by the corporations, and for the corporations.

The political system, as it now exists, is institutionally resistant to profound solutions when they do not serve the short-term economic profit maximization of large corporate systems which are the donors and are the people who rule this town.

This government is now more than not a system of legalized bribery. And this system will not change itself.  The status quo … will not disrupt itself — that’s our job.

Economy – We should be making an emergency level, just, transition from a dirty economy to a clean economy, and an emergency level, just, transition from a war economy to a peace economy.

I am guided by the words of Franklin Delano Roosevelt who said that a necessitous man is not a free man.  Not every chain is visible.  It is time for us to release the shackles that are on the 64% Americans who are living paycheck to paycheck. It is time for us to do what other generations have done. Franklin Roosevelt said that we would not have to worry about a Fascist takeover as long as democracy delivered on its blessings. Given the economic situation of far too many Americans today, given the behavior of this corporate Matrix – whether it has to do with insurance companies, big pharmaceutical companies, big oil companies big agricultural companies, big food companies, big chemical companies, or the military industrial complex and the defense contractors that they serve — they have had their day. Corporate tyranny will end now.

Entitlements/Income Support – Why does one in four Americans carry medical debt? Why is it that 18 million Americans cannot fulfill the prescriptions that are given them by their doctors? Why is it that 68,000 Americans die in this country every year for lack of Health Care? Why? Because we don’t have Universal Health Care. In every other advanced democracy these positions —  such as universal health care, such as such as free college (higher education and tech  school), such as free child care, such as  paid family leave and sick pay, such as a  guaranteed living wage, and such as a  21st century Economic Bill of Rights — those are moderate positions in every  other country. Every other country has them. They are mainstream. Ladies and gentlemen, hear me when I tell you this — the American people have been trained to expect so little, the American people have been played!

People in need – Those of us who live on that island of 20% of Americans for whom things are basically good are surrounded by a vast sea of economic anxiety and despair. We don’t need any more evidence that this system is intrinsically corrupt. We can see it in the broken windows, we can see it in shuttered factories, we can see it in the addiction and the brokenness of our fellow citizens.  We can see it in the despair. We can see it in the anxiety. We can see it in the depression.  Half the people in this city don’t even notice it. They are so buffered from the ravages of human suffering they don’t even mention the word “poor.” They don’t even mention the word poverty, much less address its deeper causes. So some people in this city just don’t even seem to care. Some people in this city — with some very brave exceptions — apparently don’t have the spine or the moral courage to fix it. Ladies and gentlemen, let me in there – I will.


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