Elections, and other Complications of Democracy

At the bottom of the page there is a collection of small FB postings on this topic area.

The electorate is changing colors.
"...The Democratic Party believes itself to be the party of the minorities, which leads to a mistaken belief that "demographics is destiny" as the nation heads towards a minority majority country. The 2016 election shifted this (arrogantly self-righteous) pathway to hegemony, because it changed the electorate..." (read the full essay)

Is divisiveness built into our elections? 
"...The Electoral College representation problem originates from using an Eighteenth Century solution in a Twenty-first Century world; but the divisiveness originated by the fixation on the Red and the Blue is of modern origin ..." (read the full essay)

Some of the People... - September 29, 2020

Not everyone believes in democracy all of the time.
"...And how many of 'the people' are 'fooled all of the time' into believing that liberal democracy is actually aligned with their interests in pursuit of an abstract, imperfect and unnatainable common good for all ("The American Dream") --and that most of their fellow citizens believe in democracy too? ..." (read the full essay)

The many paths to strongman rule.
"...A common trait of a populist is self-identification with "the people" leading to phrases such as "el pueblo soy yo" ("I am the people"), affirmed in different variations by AMLO, Chavez and Fidel to infer that opposition to the leader is antipatriotic opposition to the country..." (read the full essay)

A Weak Democracy December 4, 2019

When party rules over nation. 
"...The thing about power is that it exists. It can be distributed or accumulated but, like dough, squeezed on one side it will surface on another. That is why checks and balances that identify, stabilize and control power are important..."  (read the full essay)

The Big Nullification October 21, 2019

Is the will of voters overrated or manipulated?
"People in a "Blue" or "Red" State or Congressional District will believe, with logic and reason, that their vote does not make a difference..." (read the full essay)

We'll See What Happens.... October 3, 2019

Impeachments are symptoms of a deeper divide. 
"...Defending the Constitution and its core principle of separation of powers is the only way to ensure the continuation of democracy and stop absolutism..."  (read the full essay)

Do Human Rights Matter? December 6, 2018

Written for the 70th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
“… The UDHR seeks to establish that fostering such individual potential is a right for all humankind and has the expectation that by doing so the human condition will improve…" (read the full essay)

Liberty and Freedom, Words that Matter – July 4, 2018

Independence Day can always be used to reflect on its meaning.
“…A social structure and nation with the goal of securing liberty is one in which creativity will thrive, productivity improve and opportunity be equally available…” (read the full essay)

Liberty Under Attack - February 25, 2017

Thoughts on freedom of speech and the press – with a sprinkling of Mills and Burke.
“…a structured Rule of Law was a fundamental precaution against tyranny. A set of commonly agreed upon legislation limiting whims of the executive and upheld (or not) by an independent judiciary is crucial. But if that were to fail, and as an intrinsic part of the check/balance system, freedom of “thought and expression” and its corollary, “liberty of the press,” must be structurally set and vigorously defended…" (read the full essay)

On Snowden and Manning - November 24, 2016

Comment on a letter to President Obama – and the letter.
"...National security cannot be an excuse to shield abuses of power. There are legitimate secrets, and there are constitutional mechanisms to safeguard those secrets…" (read the full essay)
Pfc. Manning’s 35 year sentence was commuted in January of 2017. Edward Snowden is still a fugitive from justice living under asylum rules in Moscow, Russia.

After the Election: First Thoughts - November 9, 2016

Wednesday morning quarterbacking is not fulfilling. 
“...The US produces more vehicles with far fewer auto workers than it did twenty years ago... Retail chains and mom and pops closing around the country are not losing their customers to India or Peru. The technological shockwave is just beginning and the populist cry from all quarters will not stop it...(read the full post)

Tear Down that Wall - July 9, 2016

Addressing the divisiveness affecting our nation. 
“...We are in a ghettoized nation with factions demanding bigger walls to contain themselves in and keep the Others out, lashing out to those on the other side. The poison drip coming from all sides needs to stop; a stop to the endless water torture affecting minds, even artificially intelligent ones..." (read the full essay)

Frankenstein’s Monster Redux – October 9, 2016

Be careful what you wish for.
“…If it were granted that Trump has been a successful CEO, to transfer his skill set to running the government could lead to the worst cases of influence peddling and conflicts of interest since Spiro Agnew (when America was great?)…” (read the full essay)

Clinton Derangement Syndrome - June 13, 2016
Campaigns as horse races tend to obscure the facts.
"...Plenty has been written about the misogynistic aspect of the campaign and it does not need to be rehashed here. A simple imagination exercise should suffice. If Bernie Sanders were black, a woman or a combination of both with the same style rhetoric and tone they used in their campaign, they would not have reached as far as they did. If Hillary Clinton were a man, 50% of her detractors, easily, would go away, it is plain to see..." (read the full essay)

Supreme it is - February 24, 2016

Thoughts upon the sudden death of Justice Scalia on February 13, 2016.
"No one ever said democracy was easy. Many societies have tried it and failed miserably. In fact, in the history of mankind, democracy is the rare exception in terms of social and governmental organization. Democracy is hard because it consists of majorities trying to impose their will over minorities while respecting the rights of those minorities to be different, to dissent and to speak out their minds. That makes it messy and, for those who hold power, cumbersome." (read the full essay)
I have drifted away from a point in this essay, the one on the Electoral College. I stand by the rest of it

Gerrymandering is a cancer to democracy.
"…[the House of Representatives] should represent proportionally the people of their state, have each representative respond to approximately the same amount of people nationwide, and to be frequently held accountable by a diverse constituency, in order to listen to it better…" (read the full essay)

In 2009. to protect former Bush administration officials, the right wing media was defending torture as a rightful procedure to extract valuable information.
“…it was a tortured detainee’s confession that gave the administration that Iraq had weapons of mass destruction and that it was in a secret alliance with Al-Qaeda… Neither assertion was correct." (read the full essay)

Love and Marriage - September 20, 2009

A personal story about Gay Marriage. (read the full essay)

The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act or Tax Initiatives that You can Use Now - March 26, 2009

What “progressive” tax cuts and fiscal stimulus look like.
“…a large proportion [of the ARRA – 40% of the plan] focuses on immediate tax relief… directed to individuals and consumers… No Republicans in Congress, except for three Senators, voted in favor of these tax relief provisions.” (read the full essay)

Collected Postings:

On the Day Impeachment Articles were Presented - December 10, 2019

And a shoutout against unrestricted sales of high powered semi-automatics for export.

Is Voting Selfish or Altruistic? - September 20. 2012


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