Not to beat a dead horse...posted by The Vidiot @ 5:05 PM Permalink But the talk of Hillary running in 2008 has made me ponder the concepts of dynasty, monarchy, and oligarchy.
Here's a rhetorical question for you: Wasn't the United States created to counter a monarchy? I mean, I can see it now, Hillary in 2008, Jeb in 2012 or 2016, Chelsea after that. And frankly, the Clintons and the Bushes aren't all that different. Some social issues vary, but as far as big business goes, they're all in the same stinkpot. It's both dynastic AND monarchic.
Compounded with that is the fact that the gap between the haves and the have nots has become a gaping chasm over the years. According to Paul Krugman (excerpt here)
Excerpt: Between 1972 and 2001 the wage and salary income of Americans at the 90th percentile of the income distribution rose only 34 percent, or about 1 percent per year. So being in the top 10 percent of the income distribution, like being a college graduate, wasn't a ticket to big income gains. But income at the 99th percentile rose 87 percent; income at the 99.9th percentile rose 181 percent; and income at the 99.99th percentile rose 497 percent. No, that's not a misprint.
Yes, the economy is in crisis, but apparently, not for the top .1% of the population.
That's some pretty scary stuff. Add to that the fact that the poor are drastically undercounted which ends up reducing the amount of aid made available to them, making their predicament even more dire. And if that wasn't bad enough, a program that encouraged public service among those without connections was drastically cut by 87%! And that's just the general population.
Now, if you look at who actually is running things in Washington, you see what can only be called oligarchy. Sons working for companies, fathers in congress directing defense officials to their sons. Not to mention the standard revolving door at the nexus of politics/lobbying/corporate power. To get elected, you have to be "connected" to a lot of corporate money. To lobby, it helps to be "connected" to someone who's "connected." If you're a corporation, you hire someone to lobby who's "connected" to someone who's "connected" who, BTW, you've probably funded in the first place through a primary "connection."
Here are some more rhetorical questions for you:
Why don't we have term limits?
Why don't we have publicly funded elections?
Why doesn't somebody break up the media monopolies?
Why do corporations have the rights of personhood?
Why aren't ethics rules enforced in Congress?
Why is the voice of one corporation louder than the voices of 1 million citizens?
The answers to all of these can be found among the structures of dynasty, monarchy, and oligarchy.
I think our democracy died a long time ago. And the corpse is beginning to stink.