Arguably every eligible voter in the United States knows of the money that drives our political systems and the power dynamics that run the country. Politicians in the highest offices are exempt from prosecution for many things. Insider trading — which is illegal for the rest of us — is just one of the most glaring. You don’t have to look any further to see how politicians, regardless of party affiliation, gained so much wealth in such short periods of time.

The US was founded by elitists for elitists. Created by colonialist white men with a superiority complex. They thought they were better than anyone not from England, people with different skin tones, women, and everything else they didn’t like. At the time, Catholics were admonished and Italians, Spaniards, Irish, and even Germans weren’t considered white. As I’ve written many times before, the founders at one point feared the “Germanization” of the colonies.

And get this, they argued Germans weren’t assimilating into their “white” society.

“All Africa is black or tawny. Asia chiefly tawny. America (exclusive of the new Comers) wholly so. And in Europe, the Spaniards, Italians, French, Russians and Swedes, are generally of what we call a swarthy Complexion; as are the Germans also, the Saxons only excepted, who with the English, make the principal Body of White People on the Face of the Earth.”

Benjamin Franklin

Sound familiar? It should. It’s the same language we hear today. Except now it’s focused on anyone that is not from Europe. No matter how white one may appear, if you aren’t European American, you aren’t white. If you’re Latino, ask anyone in the US and most will likely say you aren’t white whether or not they are intentionally being bigots. This xenophobic idea was programmed into American society long ago.

Corruption in the US Supreme Court is becoming more evident every day yet, the US intentionally has nothing in place to stop it

Even further, the darker one was — and is — the harder the system is on them. From slavery and genocide to the use of mass incarceration, Black people and Indigenous people have suffered the wrath of white supremacy much more than others. While modern systems may impact other demographics, those communities haven’t been consistently destroyed for hundreds of years by systems that operate under the guise of law and order.

White women, although not nearly on the same scale as Black and Indigenous people, were also considered second-class citizens to white men intent on maintaining all the power. Today, however, and despite all the progress we’ve made, white supremacy is bolstered not just by white men, but by non-white and non-male sympathizers as well. The idea for them is that they stand to benefit more by aligning with white male power instead of trying to counter the inequity.


In the United States, corruption is driven by self-preservation making it nonpartisan. We’ve seen politicians throughout modern history intent on fostering reform suddenly take the opposite position once in office. In many cases, politicians will beat the same drum of change while doing nothing to bring about actual progress. This shows the inhumanity of how systems operate in the US and is undeniable as it infects all aspects of modern society.

Recently, Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas was exposed for accepting donations and special favors from a Republican megadonor. This speaks to several issues. In one way, he’s no different than Enrique Tarrio, the Afro-Cuban former chairman of the Proud Boys, nor is he any different than Diamond and Silk and other non-white “conservative” influencer. They chose to take sides with the same white power structures that would have them tortured, incarcerated, or murdered the first chance they got.

Taking a look at policing in America, for example, points not only to how modern-day lynchings are conducted but how elitist power structures function. In the 1980s, prominent Republican strategist Lee Atwater told us how today’s dog whistles work and the function of modern white supremacy. He exposed how Republican attacks on social programs — benefitting non-white people — meant leaving some white people to suffer with other demographics. That includes policing and mass incarceration which are both products of eliminating social programs.

“You start out in 1954 by saying, “Ni**er, nigger, ni**er.” By 1968 you can’t say “ni**er” — that hurts you, backfires. So you say stuff like, uh, forced busing, states’ rights, and all that stuff, and you’re getting so abstract. Now, you’re talking about cutting taxes, and all these things you’re talking about are totally economic things and a byproduct of them is, blacks get hurt worse than whites.… We want to cut this,” is much more abstract than even the busing thing, uh, and a hell of a lot more abstract than “Ni**er, ni**er.”

Republican strategist Lee Atwater in 1981
Clarence Thomas is found to have secretly accepted donations and luxurious gifts from a major Republican donor

Even after Atwater explained how white supremacist policies hurt white people and it’s a price they’re willing to pay, racists and many non-white people continue to help maintain white power’s hold on society by denying how pervasive systemic bigotry is. While Atwater apologized on his deathbed for the damage he did, it was too little too late. The US continues to live with the outcomes of the party’s extremely racist ideas that he birthed.

Atwater’s strategy continues to be used and has led to the near-complete destruction of the Voting Rights Act, the abolition of abortion rights, the continued ruination of Black and Indigenous communities, and even the attacks on the LGBTQ community. The focus on drag queens and trans people is intentional in that they are demonizing the entire queer community with false accusations, blatant lies, and propaganda just as they did with the “crack” epidemic, the “welfare queen”, and the “super predator” tropes that were used against the Black community.

There are many people outside white America that will tell you racism doesn’t exist. No matter how much you point it out, they will argue it’s not true. Even someone like conservative influencer Candace Owens, a Black woman who once sued her school for racism, will argue racial animus isn’t a thing. Enrique Tarrio, Clarence Thomas, Nick Fuentes, and many other influential people share these views not because they’re true but because it benefits them both socially and financially. The abundance of wealth generated at others’ expense makes them all corrupt.

Then, you have Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi defending depravity in Congress. When asked about dozens of members of Congress and hundreds of their staff being caught profiting from the COVID pandemic and whether that type of stock trading should be allowed, Pelosi responded by saying, “We’re a free market economy” despite the myriad conflicts of interest. In fact, she refused to answer any questions regarding the latter.

Selective Corruption

While many argue that stock trading in Congress is harmless, I remind you that every special favor is repaid and the American people foot the bill. We pay to bail out failed corporations and banks while our small businesses are offered no such support. Excessive returns passed off as inflation is yet another way corporations profit while not being held accountable by our elected officials and politicians benefit from those record gains while you pay higher prices.

Corruption in America is deeply ingrained into society and racial injustice is a large part of that criminality. However, it’s the same type of depravity the United States consistently demonizes other countries for. The US rebukes many politicians and world leaders and often charges them with crimes for doing the same thing our politicians do every day. The US tells other nations that accepting special favors in their homelands is an illegal and prosecutable offense yet, as previously explained, its own government officials do it all the time.

Former White House Ethics Officer under Barack Obama, Walter Schaub, blasted Pelosi’s “free market” assertion exposing just how the corruption in Congress works. Interestingly, it’s exactly what the US defines as crimes in other countries and is constantly charging Latin American leaders with. While Schaub doesn’t delve into the foreign affairs issue, he exposes how this corruption happens in front of our faces.

“In reality, it’s not exactly a free market when she has inside access to information from government experts that isn’t public, that can affect influence their trading activity that the public doesn’t have access to. It’s not exactly free when we’re locked outside of the kind of information that members of Congress get all the time. This isn’t a right, left, or center issue. This is a right and wrong issue and it’s objectively clear that Nancy Pelosi is wrong.”

Former White House Ethics Officer under Barack Obama, Walter Schaub on CNN
Former White House Ethics Officer Walter Schaub on CNN blasting Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi’s “free market” response to reporters’ questions about corruption in Congress.

Meanwhile, a recent report from Amnesty International speaks to how the US government also employs non-governmental organizations (NGOs) to promote imperialist policies codified in United States law. While the press release criticizes the West for its double standards and how it’s paving the way for further abuses around the world, the report stopped short of denouncing the corruption in the US Congress and instead placed the burden on “activists in the West”.

“As the United States and Europe compete with China and Russia for allies and credibility, human rights hypocrisies in racist migration policies (welcoming some while demonizing others), disproportionate responses to conflict (prioritizing conflicts in Europe while failing to prevent hundreds of thousands from dying in Ethiopia, Haiti, Mali, Sri Lanka, Venezuela, and Yemen), and a pandemic response which continues to prioritize profit for U.S. pharmaceutical corporations over vaccine equity, undermine any case for human rights that Western governments might make. Until activists in the West demand the end of double standards on human rights, politicians will always put expediency before principle.”

Paul O’Brien, Amnesty International USA’s Executive Director.

The invocation of US law implemented by racist colonialist leaders hundreds of years ago is still common practice today and many NGOs help facilitate it. The word “corruption” appears 54 times in the Amnesty International report. However, the US is not associated with any of those mentions. Thus, making inhumanity in America seem like simple policy issues. The truth is, like any other nation, the United States puts corporate interests and profits over its own population as well as those of the nations it forces itself upon. It does so under the guise of progress.

While NGOs involved in foreign affairs have always been tumultuous, many organizations still do some good despite their seeming contradictions and conflicts of interest. But when the US government involves itself with any of them — which it often does — is when things go sideways. Because many corporate foundations help fund so many of these NGOs, it puts them in a position to stay silent despite what we all know to be true: politicians in Congress are mostly corrupt and corporations nurture it.

The Antagonist Magazine is a project made up of journalists, activists, and writers focused on amplifying the stories of marginalized communities. The goal is to educate the public by sharing narratives focused on independent voices. Born of an online community in 2019, our platform operates independently; free of corporate influence. Please consider supporting the work of dozens of writers from various communities.

Arturo Dominguez

Arturo is an anti-racist political nerd. He is an upcoming author, journalist, advocate for social justice, and a married father of three. He is a top writer on Medium and a regular contributor to several news media outlets. He writes educational and informative material about systemic racism, white supremacy, and racial injustice.

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