Wednesday, January 23, 2008

The Oligarchy of the United States of America

Our country has trapped itself in a rut. For too long it has accepted a two party system as politics as usual, and politics as usual has achieved little but to create problems in the name of politics.
Politicians have a way of perceiving a problem and presenting it to the public, to make them believe there is a problem. They then explain how they would solve the problem they created, usually by throwing money at it. This creates the additional problem of how to obtain the money with which to throw at the problem. That means more taxes, fees, or laws which enable the government which these politicians control to confiscate property that it may sell for more revenue. No government at any level will ever have enough money to keep itself growing in power and influence.
This is politics as usual under the two party system. Both parties have one thing in common--the belief that government should be operated from the top down, and that the general public and those who conduct commerce, should be controlled by that government. Both the Democratic and Republican parties believe that the Federal Government exists for the good of the people, and that the government will decide what is good for the people.
This has created an oligarchy--a government of the many ruled by the few. This is a far cry from the intent of the Constitution, that set up a Republic in which individual rights were not to be governed by laws that were outside the constitutionally established rights of the government. The Rule of Law, as applied by the Constitution meant that the weak would be protected from the strong, and that the individual right to person and property would be protected from trespass by others. The role of the Federal Government was basically to solve disputes in commerce between the states, and to protect the sovereignty of the United States and of each individual state. State law had precedence over Federal law, as the smaller government of the state was more able to meet the needs of its people. This was because each state was divided into representative districts, representing communities or small groups of small communities, comprised of individuals who would elect the person they felt would best represent them in the state assembly or legislature.
Each state's assembly or legislature would elect two senators to the Senate House of Congress of the United States, while Representatives to the House of Representatives of the Congress of the United States--the number of which depend on the population of the state, determining the number of federal districts--were elected by the voters in each district.
The President was elected by the voters in each state. Electors, also numbered according to population, would cast the actual ballot for the winner of the election in each state. This was done to offset a popular national vote that would give no voice to the states smaller in population.
This was by no means a "democracy" where each person gets one vote in all matters. Democracy's tend to destroy themselves, because there is no rule of law to protect the minorities, or to provide the system of checks and balances of a republic.
That is the basic idea of what we have for a government in the United States, but the major parties, the Democratic and the Republican, have hijacked this system to the point where they decide who the candidates for the Senate, the House, and the Presidency should be. They decide what issues are important to the voter, and what issues their party will represent, which usually has little relationship to what the voter thinks is important.
As we have seen in the current Congress, the members of each party represent the beliefs of their party rather than the beliefs of the individuals who elected them. That is to say, even if a representative drafts a bill that would benefit those who elected that person to office, and the person is a member of one party, the members of the other party would automatically strive to block it because it is contrary to the position of their party.
If one party thinks that commerce is important to the strength of the Republic, and the well being of the people, the other party will automatically oppose commerce. A very good illustration of this could be seen in a recent Democratic party debate, where one presidential nomination candidate criticised another candidate for being associated with Wal-Mart, thus identifying her as being in league with the opposing Republican Party. Why is this a bad thing? Don't the Democratic Party politicians believe in helping the poor? Hasn't Wal-Mart given hundreds of thousands of jobs to people who lived where there were no jobs for them? Hasn't Wal-Mart made goods available to people who could normally not afford those goods?
But that is wrong, according to the Democrats, because it is an individual corporation that is helping the poor, and the Democratic candidates should be against individual corporations because the Republicans support individual corporations. The Democratic candidates believe that helping the poor is a role that the Federal Government should be involved in.
The major parties have created two large voting blocks in which there is no gray area, only black and white. They strive to represent us by controlling how we behave in everything from what we eat to who we sleep with. Each block has it's own ideas of how and where to exert this control, but the bottom line is that they represent those ideas. We are being ruled by a few elitists who call themselves politicians, but they represent the political party to which they belong, not the views of those who elected them. If the voter doesn't agree with those views, they will tell the voter what they think he or she needs to know. The political parties can't control what we do unless they control what we think, so they make sure they tell us what to think. Whatever happened to the Republic?
It has been replaced by the Oligarchy,