Democracy is a Good Idea But it Isn’t Working

When our founding fathers set up the country, democracy had not been tried in a serious way. There was fear that an uneducated majority would vote the assets of everyone else into their pockets. Ben Franklin equated democracy to two wolves and a lamb deciding what to have for dinner. They organized a Republic to try and avoid that scenario. It was a good point but there were other issues they didn’t consider.

As it turns our human behavior in the political arena is guided by instinct and intellect takes a distant back seat. For eons humanity had lived under kings, chiefs and other leaders. Rather than elect representatives and rein them in, they sought the equivalents of kings and searched for messiahs. Americans were charged with the task of overseeing government but have always voted as if searching to find a parent to look after them.

Of course candidates for office like the rest of humanity are guided by self interest. It is safe to say that self interest is part of every human transaction. In all but a few cases it is the dominate motive.
With respect to highly ambitious people who run for office self interest as a motive is overwhelming.
In the absence of extreme pressure from constituents representation goes to those who offer the most in terms of helping the elected person achieve personal goals and aspirations.

Since work is a always second choice, selfish interests use government as a way to reap where they don’t sow. Once power has been achieved, holding onto power is too important to let outcomes to elections determine who holds an office. The right to shape public opinion, it turns out, trumps the right to vote as a means of determining who wins elections.

How many times do we hear, “be sure and vote. It is your civic duty.” Voters both liberals and conservatives head to the polls with their mind full of sound bites their minds have recorded from the media. The thoughts folks are exposed to are adopted as personal insights but are nothing of the kind.

Voting has great potential but mind control determines how elections turn out. With few exceptions, the winner of an election is acceptable to the reigning power structure at the time.

In the U.S. the financial sector is the most powerful group trying to gain traction in this election cycle. The majority of their political donations which are enormous are now going to Republican Candidate. Republicans are gaining a lot of power in 2014.

Chances are very good Democrats will now come out attacking Wall Street and the distorted income distribution. They will offer no real solutions but will seize the opportunity to offer a culprit as a way to gain back public support. This is the way politics actually works. Constituents have no chance of being represented by either party. They do get things but only as a means of pacifying them and keeping them comfortable. Politicians have known for a long time if the rank and file suffer too much they will rebel. This lesson was learned very well in the sixties during the Vietnam War. Any changes that came out of the sixties came from citizens working outside the system. It was business as usual at the ballot box.

Constituents will believe anything as long as they are comfortable and made to feel important.

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