Flash! Bulletin editorial cartoon Dec. 26, partial statement of truth — “Electorate” at fault? Why? Could it be institutionalized corruption embedded in the U.S. political infrastructure?
Let’s form a hypothesis: That the fundamental reason for fiscal gridlock and the inability of our Congress, Supreme Court and executive branch to perform their duties is corruption of the highest order, occasioned by special interest bribery and legalized by an acquiescing court more attuned to touchy-feely rulings than those in the best interests of the nation.
May a private citizen be thrown before the courts and into jail for both making and accepting bribes for services illegal, self-serving, and wholly destructive to the United States of America? Yes! But where may it be done legally? Could it be as an elected member of the United States Congress? Could it be as a special interest or a lobbyist for these interests? Could it be legalized through a bought-and-paid-for court system that supports this malarkey under the guise of free speech?
There are no longer enough ethically grounded, elected U.S. congressional members in this country to independently represent their constituents for the sake of the country. This same corruption taints all decisions, funds the two-party system that plays both sides against the middle, and has the power to discipline all those not adhering to the “party line.”
There have always been crooked politicians, but they were sufficiently in the minority that their contaminating effects were neutralized. That no longer is the case. The corrupt system and its sycophants (self-seekers, but I like “sycophants” better — it has a nasty ring to it) have taken charge and now have a self-perpetuating money machine operating in their favor.
When was the last time you saw a significant number of U.S. congressmen vote their conscience in favor of the country and not their special interests, including themselves? A shortage of guts? You bet. But the Dec. 26 Bulletin and Archie Bleyer have got it right: it’s our fault — but not in our collective power to fix. The electorate cannot fix the problem without successfully overthrowing the government and establishing a new one that eliminates special interest powers that now corrupt it. Bleyer’s assertions are well-intentioned but fall in the category of the NRA’s solution of arming schoolteachers to prevent mass murders. I noticed also that they offered to fund the folly all across the country. How nice!
The solution to the problem is immediate court cases brought directly to the Supreme Court with decisions firmly made that strip special interests (corporate, political and all nonliving organizations) of so-called vestiges of “Freedom of Speech Rights” and all monetary and organizational power to fund, propagandize and influence all elections from local to national. The party system of government needs to be severely restricted, and organized ability to censure individual lawmakers needs to be eliminated or curtailed.
National lawmakers need to be graded on how well they represent “all their citizens” locally, and be recalled if performance is not up to specification.
Need a model? See Canadian system: www.mapleleafweb.com/features/federal-campaign-finance-laws-canada#overview.
Search further under “Canadian political campaign rules and enforcement.” While not perfect, notice how corruption has been minimized.
We can do better. Congressmen and women: stand up and be counted. We need you now.