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Democracy in the United States, Part 2

November 6, 2009

Pretend that a man—lowlife by nature—was made a senator based upon nothing but family connections. Pretend this man was kicked out of college for cheating and joined the Army during the Korean War but his daddy was a powerful gang leader and thug—a smuggler and purveyor of illegal substances who got rich off people’s addictions and used the money to build a political machine. Daddy used this political power to make sure his son got a reduced enlistment period and assignment to Paris instead of the war zone, and then years later Daddy gave him a seat in the United States Senate that was effectively owned by the family.

Keep pretending—hold your nose if necessary.

Pretend this man continued to be a lowlife for the rest of his mortal life. A drunk and a skirt chaser, one night he was cheating on his wife and drove his car, with a young girl in it, off a bridge and into a canal. He left the girl in the submerged car—terrified, screaming, trapped in an air bubble, scratching at the upholstery with broken and bleeding fingernails as her air slowly ran out—while he walked to his hotel room, took a shower, put on dry clothes, and had another drink… and what the heck, let’s pretend he was so cold-blooded that he also called his lawyer and political advisor, and while the girl clawed for air in the cold dark water that night, until she eventually died, he devised a damage control policy to save his political career.

Sounds far-fetched, doesn’t it, that anybody could be this crappy a human being? Nevertheless, keep hold of your nose (chew on a ginger snap if it helps) and let’s continue.

As bad as this man was for the young girl left to drown, pretend he was equally bad for the nation he was supposed to serve as senator. Pretend he wrote legislation which destroyed the nation’s immigration system, the preeminent immigration system in the world for almost two centuries, and replaced it with an idiotic “anchor-baby” system which granted citizenship to newborns whether their parents were citizens or not, which in turn created an avalanche of illegal aliens dashing across the border to have citizen-babies and then staying to swamp the nation’s social services and live shadowy lives in the middle of, but apart from, legal citizens.

Seems like a situation good for nobody, but it does create a constituency, you see.

Pretend he fought in all cases for increased government control and against freedom, the fundamental political principle of his nation, and was so untrustworthy as a politician that he twice went behind presidents’ backs to conspire with the nation’s great philosophical opponent and Cold War enemy, the Soviet Union. He was so dishonest, in fact, that he stood up in senate chambers to cynically vilify and slander with outrageous lies a nominee for the Supreme Court who was considered by his peers to be the greatest nominee of their lifetimes.

As a final insult to his country, pretend this man and his fellow lowlifes in congress voted themselves a special right to be buried as heroes when they died, as though they were soldiers and no matter how badly they had conducted their lives. Pretend he took advantage of that right upon his death, and is therefore buried in Arlington National Cemetery next to honest-to-God heroes who believed in freedom and fought for freedom and died for freedom as soldiers in foreign lands—the very thing he was exempted from by his Daddy.

If any nation had such a man in its senate for over forty years, pretending to win honest elections, would you call that democracy or would you have doubts? Did you consider Saddam Hussein’s Iraq to be a democracy?

(Hey, give Saddam credit: he didn’t just win every election, he won with 99% of the votes—and they don’t have ACORN in Iraq so that’s 99% without a single Mickey Mouse vote.)

Clearly, just going through the motions of having elections is insufficient to label a country democratic.

You’ve probably recognized the “pretend” man by now and the question I asked in Part 1, “Do we live in a democratic republic?” has been answered by Ted Kennedy’s bad example. The answer is, “No, we don’t, because no valid democratic process would repeatedly elect such foulness to high office.”

So what went wrong? How did we lose democracy in the greatest democratic nation that ever existed?

Look at the basic requirements of a democratic republic—there are five of them, and a working democracy needs all five or it’s a blight and a sham:
1. Fraud-free voting
2. Honest vote counting
3. Legitimate choices
4. Educated voters with unrestricted access to information
5. A constitution preventing abuse by majority (the "republic")
In Part 3 of this series—that’s that final part, I promise—we’ll take a look at whether those basic requirements are being met in the United States.

Meanwhile, look at the list. What do you think?

From Reno, Nevada, USA

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