Political Opinion by Richard Bleil
Editorial Comment: This post makes multiple references to Michael Bloomberg. Between the writing of this post and the day it is published, Bloomberg withdrew from the race. However, the point of the post was never intended to be about the man himself, but rather, the incursion of money into American politics and how this endangers democracy. As such, I still believe this post to be valid as our country continues to be run like an oligarchy, as opposed to a true democracy. In my humble opinion.
Whether you are Democrat or Republican, left or right, conservative or liberal, aren’t you tired of the games? I mean, seriously, is there a difference in politicians these days?
The inspiration of this post is an article I read today on Mike Bloomberg. If you don’t know, Bloomberg is yet another billionaire out to buy the presidency and betting he can outbid the current billionaire Trump. But is there a difference between these two? Yes, they’re running on different tickets, but neither care about the typical American (the 99% who are not excessively wealthy), and both play the same games.
One of the big concerns about Bloomberg were his antics as mayor of New York City. He switched his political affiliation from Democrat to Republican to run for the position of mayor which, in and of itself, says to me that he either doesn’t see a difference between the parties or is willing to do whatever is necessary to win, or worse, both. As Mayor, one of the greatest concerns was his support of the “Stop and Search” policy, a weapon used by the police to stop minorities without cause and frisk them thereby violating their constitutional guaranteed freedoms from warrantless searches. If this sounds familiar, it’s also a routine issue with Trump, who opened up his campaign calling Mexican immigrants as drug dealers, rapists and murderers. His immigration policies, comments against senators (such as when he refers to Elisabeth Warren as “Pocahontas”) and entire neighborhoods belies his claims of being a “friend” to other races and nationalities as he tries to garner votes from these communities.
Sexual harassment allegations also follow Bloomberg. Perhaps not as blatant as the claims (and direct quotes from) Trump, it again displays an attitude of entitlement and lack of respect. But what has me so up in arms today is a story, as of the writing of this post (about a week before it will post), that Bloomberg is listing the chairs of the DNC leader as employees on his payroll (according to the Associated Press, he has hired Alex Gallardo Rooker, vice chair of the California Democratic Party as a senior adviser). This comes on the heels of the news that many “super delegates” in the DNC will “rebel” against Bernie Sanders should Bernie win the DNC nomination.
Four years ago, the DNC unfairly took the nominations away from Bernie, and it looks as if they are prepared to do it again. Where does the voice of the people come in to play? Don’t we count anymore? I’m so tired of the oligarchy of American politics.
America is considered by the rest of the world as the least democratic of all of the democratic nations. This is due, in large part, to the two-party system. In fact, the founding fathers were careful to leave parties out of the Constitution altogether out of fear of the fractioning of the people, just as we are seeing today. In other nations, every party is “legitimate”. In England, there is a Communist party. The party doesn’t garner enough support to turn the nation communist (far from it), but their voice is heard. If they get two percent of the vote, then two percent of their legislature are representatives from this party. It may not be enough to sway votes, but their voice is heard. In America, we’re so afraid to hear dissenting opinions that just throwing terms around is enough to scare people. The term “Socialist” has been so abused in this manner that today it is practically meaningless, and yet the word alone scares people out of voting for candidates regardless of what the individual actually stands for.
By now, some of my regular readers might be ready to cry “foul!” All along, I’ve tried to maintain that I’m not so much trying to sway political votes, but rather to give people things to think about. This post certainly sounds like a political endorsement, but that’s not how it’s meant. The reality is that I’m very upset, and I probably owe some people an apology for that, but what I’m upset about is the successful manipulation of politics by people with money and power. I’m upset that these people have shifted our political system from democracy to oligarchy. Yes, I’ve called out two candidates by name, Trump and Bloomberg, but notice that I’m calling out candidates from both political parties. Additionally, I’m trying very hard not to speak out against these two people as individuals, but rather, I want to call out their abuse of power and resources (that is, their money). Their politics is putting more money in the hands that don’t need it, driving up national debt, stealing from those who do need it, and in a reckless, immoral and likely illegal actions. I want our nation to return to the hands of those who built it; us.