Avoiding the Collapse of Democracy Is Our Responsibility

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  • #243430

    • Total Posts: 4,288

    Politics and photography have a lot in common. If you believe Susan Sontag, they involve a desire to control and frame reality. Taking pictures has become a method to certify experience, whereas the news have become a way of interpreting the world according to our interests. The notion that it is possible to do so with impunity explains why we struggle nowadays to distinguish what is convenient from what is right. Pragmatic consensus has become the exception, and a society divided between doctrinaire camps has become the norm. Public discourse has become uncivil, and an obsession with messianic leaders and theatrical narratives has prevented us from focusing on the real problems that afflict our societies.

    Showbiz politics

    Politics today have become yet another form of entertainment. Campaigns are not run by defending a particular notion of happiness, but by transforming politicians into celebrities. Debates are not about political knowledge, but likeability. Representatives across the aisle are more than our adversaries, and building bridges is rarely an option. Attempts to understand different points of view require looking through inverted lenses – something neither easy nor comfortable – and most politicians do not have an appetite for low-key politics in the age of spectacle and social media.

    Donald Trump is a byproduct of the times we are living. An incompetent President for a system that was unable to adapt to economic disruption and inequality. Most of his leadership has been done on Twitter, and all that Mr. Trump has to offer outside the digital world are thoughtless foreign policy decisions and a disturbing fondness for authoritarian regimes. Few presidents have been able to inflict such damage in such a period of time. Even fewer political parties have willingly committed their future to a President that has no respect for neither democratic institutions nor the rule of law.

    Mr. Trump will not rise to the challenges ahead. The question is if politicians and journalists will descend to his level. Many representatives care too much about impeachment and too little about the consequences of polarisation and partisanship. As for journalists, we seem unable to take our eyes off the President and have overlooked everything that should have been learned during the last presidential campaign. The result is a poisonous information ecosystem that encourages a superficial and affective approach to politics and that undermines institutions and public trust in our democratic systems.


    The human race has few (if any) problems that couldn’t be solved by massive wealth.  And we’re literally surrounded by it, like a fly in amber.  Now if we only had brains… —Ben Bova

  • #243451

    • Total Posts: 2,809

    Basically, Democracy in the US has already collapsed.  Voting for a Vichy Dem this time will not help one tiny little bit.

    I will not vote for a Vichy Dem. Period. As always, I decide who is a Vichy Dem.

    Bernie's ISSUES or Bust!

  • #243452

    • Total Posts: 246

    Good synopsis on the rise of the Right Wing around the world:

    When economic anxiety and socio-cultural issues intertwine, such as immigration and the loss of sovereignty, populist leaders outperform mainstream politicians. They are able to translate the experiences and problems of the voters into an understandable language of us versus them. Overwhelmed and desperate to remain in office, most governments and candidates end up normalising their extremist adversaries.

    Time for the US government and candidates to do the opposite and normalize Bernie’s platform (though his FDR platform is far from extreme).

    “Go and tell Alexander that God the Supreme King is never the Author of insolent wrong, but is the Creator of light, of peace, of life, of water, of the body of man and of souls;...what Alexander offers and the gifts he promises are things to me utterly useless;..." Dandamis, a great sannyasi of Taxila.Excerpt From: Yogananda, Paramahansa. “Autobiography of a Yogi.”

    • #243468

      Ohio Barbarian
      • Total Posts: 8,838

      @sorechasm If mainstream politicians didn’t sell out their own people to the highest corporate bidders, they wouldn’t be losing to demagogues of any political stripe.

      We know now that Government by organized money is just as dangerous as Government by organized mob.--Franklin Delano Roosevelt

      With Bernie Sanders, we have the receipts. --Nina Turner

  • #243497

    • Total Posts: 396

    While we’re defeating the Far Right, can we defeat the Near Right as well?

    Never leave a job half-finished.

    His body recovered from his torment and became hale,
    but the shadow of his pain was in his heart;
    and he lived to wield his sword with left hand
    more deadly than his right had been.

  • #243518

    • Total Posts: 1,734

     As democracy is perfected, the office of president represents, more and more closely, the inner soul of the people. On some great and glorious day the plain folks of the land will reach their heart’s desire at last and the White House will be adorned by a downright moron. – H.L. Mencken

    See current resident of the White House for evidence of the above.

    Tell me, great captain, how do the angels sleep when the devil leaves his porch light on? Tom Waites

  • #243894

    • Total Posts: 4,288

    The Right are wrong.

    The human race has few (if any) problems that couldn’t be solved by massive wealth.  And we’re literally surrounded by it, like a fly in amber.  Now if we only had brains… —Ben Bova

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