The Struggle For Democracy
Divisive Politics Engenders Disaster
Whether we are weary of divisive politics or enthusiastically participate in elections, those who seek and attain power ultimately affect our lives.
The battle for the U.S. presidency has lost all traces of sanity and democracy. The extreme opinions regarding which potential leader supports freedom and justice — and who is a charlatan or criminal — reflect the schizophrenic polarization of the country.
This crisis in choosing leadership is no accident. The unscrupulous, disruptive methods of attaining and maintaining high office reveal the continuing degeneration of ethical standards, constitutional rights, and a willingness to abuse the electoral process.
Political strategies designed to skew perception and incite emotion, rather than display the actual qualifications and predisposition of candidates, are a blight on the country. Most Americans are not fooled by these charades, though consequently, confidence has been lost in U.S. institutions; particularly the presidency.
The Democratic National Committee’s changing of rules including the date of the Iowa caucus and the New Hampshire primary are solely designed to rig voting and influence the image of President Biden. This chicanery is matched by the Trump campaign’s attempt to dominate the Republican Party’s nomination apparatus.
The deterioration and division caused by the two-party system are not hidden. The United States is being torn apart by partisan agendas that have little to do with the daily lives of its citizens.
Beneath the manipulations, slogans, and propaganda — different facts are revealed.
An Economist/YouGov poll provided a stunning revelation about the favorability of presidential contenders and who would likely become president if the electoral process was not encumbered by a divisive process. Among all Americans, regardless of party affiliation, Robert F. Kennedy Jr. has the highest ratings above every candidate — surpassing both Donald Trump and Joe Biden.
A few news articles reported these meaningful findings, although both surveys have been virtually ignored. Mr. Kennedy’s name was not included in a later Gallup poll of popular newsmakers, confirming a disinterest in acknowledging the preferred candidate of the majority of Americans.
Coverage of the surveys simply twisted words, exposing a desperate attempt by mainstream news to blur the truth. In a bizarre story, Newsweek magazine announced that Robert Kennedy Jr. Would Be Winning 2024 if it Was a Popularity Contest. In an effort to deflect the importance of the data, the article diminishes the relevance of its headline and attempts to reduce the viability of the Kennedy campaign.
The sum of what a candidate presents to the public, including personality and platform, determines the ultimate elements of their popularity. The Economist and Harvard polls present a reality that won’t be disguised or repressed. The numbers clearly indicate a preference for Mr. Kennedy’s leadership; reinforcing the fact that the current electoral process is engineered to betray the will of the people.
A Broken System
Additional statistics and trends confirm the threat to democracy.
Only 68% of the population voted in the 2020 presidential election. In previous contests over recent decades, where many results were close, the President of the United States has been elected by just over half of those who voted; about one-third of the US population.
In some cases, candidates have won the popular vote and lost in the electoral college, a process that has been long criticized for not reflecting the will of the people.
The most glaring weakness in elections is the lack of majority rule. In most other democracies, leaders must be elected by over 50% of voters. Some states have already initiated the transition to Rank Choice Voting where if an initial election doesn’t yield a winner with over half of voters, a subsequent poll is held, allowing the two leading candidates to vie for leadership.
Ignoring the need to maintain a truly representative government, two-party politics in the US has manifested a degradation of the electoral process. This becomes increasingly apparent as the 2024 primary season approaches.
Narrowing the parameters for presidential contenders serves something other than righteousness. Among those who vote and those who don’t, at least half of the country is well aware there is a crisis; many people are alienated from an unfair system that doesn’t consider their needs. Partisan politics has discouraged entire sectors of the population from participating in government; a recent Pew Research poll indicates frustration with the two-party system and shows that nearly half of younger adults say, they wish there were more parties to choose from.
Elections do not engender fair and responsible government; the process is increasingly structured to allow powerful interests to gain undue control. In particular, the corporate and financial impact on elections often results in legislation contrary to the preferences and needs of the people.
This breach of democracy overshadows the impact of any illegalities or fraud at the polls.
Monetary backing of parties and candidates has taken hold of government in an unprecedented fashion. Over 14 billion dollars was spent on the 2020 election and nearly 17 billion in 2022 on the mid-term elections. Rather than financing campaigns for noble causes, this funding is targeted to support those who will sign on to policies and laws favorable to donors.
The most revelatory donations display the depth of the disorder; some individuals and corporations hedge their bets, giving to both Republican and Democrat candidates in the same race.
This existential threat to the United States is now integral to a process where huge budgets are the primary influence on outcomes, permitting campaign financing to be the overwhelming force, permeating all aspects of government.
The outrageous fact that material interests dominate elections is accepted with despondency by voters; and winks, smirks, and shrugs by business leaders and politicians. Unsurprisingly, this corruption engenders both anger and apathy towards the government — and distrust of public figures.
Yet few leaders dare to mention or complain about the pernicious effect of corporate campaign financing.
The Real Divide
Election reform ensuring a majority of voters choose their president is the most threatening challenge to Washington’s elite and their reliance on a combative environment.
Those who highlight the damaging bipolar system are berated and sidelined. Anyone who defies internal or external party politics — and supports a fairer electoral process — is deemed an interloper and unworthy of the presidency.
Mr. Kennedy has agreed openly with Republicans on a number of issues. Rather than recognizing this as an effort to find common ground, his fellow Democrats claim this proves his duplicity and betrayal of the party. His desire for Democrats to return to former priorities and historical role in representing the interests of the middle classes is ignored.
The powerful leaders of both parties know that their presidential candidate will pretend to be many things, but any transgression from corporate favoritism is unacceptable.
Despite the country’s majority of voters having a preference for Mr. Kennedy’s leadership, so far he has declined to run as an independent, recognizing this could inflame the adversarial atmosphere. His ultimate goal is healing the divide, he said, “My aim is to convince every Democrat that you’re not a Democrat and every Republican that you’re not a Republican.”
This quote and concept are not found in any news coverage because it violates an essential code that allows continuing partisan corruption. Instead, Mr. Kennedy is insulted and berated because of his threat to the kleptocracy that dominates the country.
Divisive politics serves only one purpose: while Democrats and Republicans insult each other and brawl, the wealthiest and most powerful Americans profit from the battle.
The antagonism that drives public controversy in the United States is an over-riding dominant force. The us vs. them mentality continues to fuel dangerous animosity; Americans have not experienced this degree of a polarized climate since the Civil War. If this trend is not reversed, the damage will be irreparable.
The dysfunction highlights a desperate need for a president who recognizes the systemic flaws in politics and the corporate capture of government. The electorate can recognize the dignity and potential of a candidate who speaks to these central concerns. And the one-third of Americans who don’t vote might come to the polls if they heard from an aspiring leader whose perspective crossed party lines.
Mr. Kennedy’s strong popularity is very worrying to those who have struggled to maintain illicit and treacherous power. This explains the relentless efforts to diminish his prominence.
Nonetheless, it is apparent that if Robert F. Kennedy Jr. is on the ballot next November, he will win the presidential election by a greater majority than any candidate in recent history.
Originally published on the author’s Substack
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