No matter the outcome, big money and voter suppression crippled the election. This is no way to run the world’s oldest democracy.
American Prospert, January 28, 2013
Last November 7, a syndicated cartoon made the rounds in progressive circles. Drawn by Signe Wilkinson, it showed a battered, bruised, patched-up Uncle Sam defiantly flexing his biceps and flashing the dazed grin of a fighter who’d survived a vicious knockdown and prevailed in 15 rounds. The caption, “Democracy Wins,” became a popular meme amid the liberal euphoria that broke out on election night. President Barack Obama had been re-elected, Karl Rove had been embarrassed on national television, and the Sheldon Adelsons and National Rifle Associations of the world had thrown hundreds of millions of dollars down the toilet. Voter suppression had not kept blacks and Latinos from the polls. Citizens United had not done its worst. Democracy had been tried and tested, and emerged banged up but miraculously intact.
Liberals had earned their moment of giddiness. But the assumption that “democracy won” because Obama won and Democrats carried the U.S. Senate is flat wrong. Dangerously wrong. Democracy, already in a weakened state, suffered serious defeats in 2012. The battle to win it back will be long, fierce, and uphill.
Phi Beta Iota: The situation in the USA is much, much worse than this article depicts. When Newt Gingrich destroyed Speaker Jim Wright, he not only polarized Congress, he ended the tradition of bi-partisan respect for Article 1 of the Constitution, and turned whatever party had power into foot-soldiers for their party, for or against the president — for if the same party, against if not. In other words, not only is the electoral process in the USA totally corrupt, with the two parties collaborating to block the other six national parties (Constitution, Green, Libertarian, Natural Law, Reform, and Socialist) from ballot access. Sadly, all of the small parties are also corrupt, and so wrapped up in the egos of their candidates that they cannot envision a We the People Reform Coalition that would restore integrity and intelligence to all aspects of how the USA operates.