Atom Wave: King Maker

Atom Wave

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

King Maker

The democratic process in America is a lie. It is the delusion of every American who votes to assume that they hold a singular undisputed voice in the direction of the country. The terrible truth is that the value of the vote has been falling for a while, and for all but the most privileged Americans.

Democracy in this age is dominated by money, and no one including Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama, or John McCain will become president without a great deal of it. At this time it is reasonable to assume that the winner will accumulate nearly half a billion before the next election. George W Bush spent $360 million on the last election, a new record and mostly from private sources.

Political leadership these days is seldom genuine. The endeavor has been reduced to marketing. Marketing in the effort of acquiring funds for the next election. Marketing to the public for support. Then there is the persistent marketing of the party’s ideology and philosophy.

I didn’t even mention the forces of lobbying, the money pipeline for most candidates and the domain of big business and other special interests. These days’ politicians can expect plentiful assistance, with much of it coming from drug companies. These days one congressman can expect at least two lobbyists from the drug companies alone. Many congressmen can also expect to receive private jet service from companies at vastly discounted prices.

This corruption is troubling at the very least, and the de facto rigging of our elections at worst. Once big business and special interests have a strangle hold on our elections, are we really a democracy anymore? Our refusal as citizens to hold our government accountable leaves us responsible. There is a way out. Nobody has power; they are given power from the rest of us. We can still reclaim the power that is ours by refusing to support a candidate based on their popularity. We can also put an end to this by refusing to support the many businesses that have come to dominate politics. We will win every time we say no.

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