Elections

Just starting to collect my thoughts here. I've had a love/hate relationship with elections for awhile now. Time to explore this more and write it all out.

Rousseau already observed that this form of government is more accurately an ‘elective aristocracy’ because in practice the people are not in power at all. Instead we’re allowed to decide who holds power over us. It’s also important to realise this model was originally designed to exclude society’s rank and file. Take the American Constitution: historians agree it ‘was intrinsically an aristocratic document designed to check the democratic tendencies of the period’. It was never the American Founding Fathers’ intention for the general populace to play an active role in politics.

It’s not surprising that American ‘democracy’ exhibits dynastic tendencies – think of the Kennedys, the Clintons, the Bushes. Time and again we hope for better leaders, but all too often those hopes are dashed. The reason, says Professor Keltner, is that power causes people to lose the kindness and modesty that got them elected, or they never possessed those sterling qualities in the first place. In a hierarchically organised society, the Machiavellis are one step ahead. They have the ultimate secret weapon to defeat their competition. They’re shameless.

Humankind - Rutger Bregman

I feel like George Carlin would have agreed with Bregman. Here's some gems from Carlin re: politics in America:

If voting changed anything, it would be illegal.

The next time they give you all that civic bullshit about voting, keep in mind that Hitler was elected in a full, free democratic election

Voting is a meaningless exercise. I'm not going to waste my time with it. These parties, these politicians are given to us as a way of making us feel we have freedom of choice. But we don't. Everything is done to you in this country.

The politicians are put there to give you the idea that you have freedom of choice. You don’t. You have no choice. You have owners. They own you. They own everything. They own all the important land. They own and control the corporations. They’ve long since bought and paid for the Senate, the Congress, the state houses, and city halls. They got the judges in their back pocket. And they own all the big media companies so they control just about all of the news and information you get to hear . . . But I’ll tell you what they don’t want. They don’t want a population of citizens capable of critical thinking. They don’t want well-informed, well-educated people capable of critical thinking. They’re not interested in that. That doesn’t help them. That’s against their interests. It’s a big club and you ain’t in it. By the way, it’s the same big club they use to beat you over the head all day long.