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Member since: Fri Jan 1, 2010, 03:15 PM
Number of posts: 11,945

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America's founders set up a democratic form of government.

Democracy is government of, by, and for the people. The very concept of voting, of electing representatives to govern the country, of "one man one vote," meant that citizenship and voting were not dependent on circumstances such as personal wealth, and the American government was intended to serve everyone, regardless of material wealth. (Yes, our nation's founders were limited to their 18th century worldview and didn't realize that women and AAs should be full voting citizens within the new democracy, but the Constitution they created was flexible enough to eventually expand democratic governance to include nonwhites and females.) America was created as a democratic government. That is fundamental.

Oligarchy is not democracy. Oligarchy is government or, by, and for the few. Changes in our government put in place by the Reagan administration have altered the conduct, purpose, and outcome of the government. It no longer serves the people -- the many -- as our founders intended. This has been a coup, a relatively slow, quiet, bloodless coup. Power has been transferred from the many to the few. This is an immense transformation of our country. And yet the Constitution itself has not changed although, over time, the Supreme Court altered the meanings of some of some of the words in the Constitution. Words like "person," and "speech." So now corporations are persons and money is speech. Little changes like this have had huge effects, as power that was intended to be shared relatively equally by all has gradually flowed away from the common person and toward the wealthy few, from democracy to oligarchy. (In fact, it is a specific kind of oligarchy: plutocracy, "government by the wealthy."

This is a big deal. It matters. We need to put it out in the open, talk about it, and deal with it. There are "Democrats" on this website who either refuse to see this truth or refuse to admit it. There may even be some who are unable to grasp it. But what has happened and is happening with this gradual transfer of power amounts to a slowly building oppression of "the many." Most people know something is wrong, but they don't know what or why, so they seek scapegoats in other people (races, religions, etc.) and/or in government itself. They can't see who it is that has taken the reins of our government away from them. They don't know what happened to make everyday living turn so harsh, uncomfortable, and vaguely frightening, as it is for so many today.

That's the conversation Senator Sanders is trying to start with the country.
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