Recently, I read a woman’s blog in which she insisted she would never, ever vote for Hillary Clinton. Clinton, she insisted, was a liar and a bad, bad person. I suggest anyone interested in facts instead of drivel look here: (Click)
Whatever the hard feelings, the time has come for the politically righteous to heed the words of Jack Kennedy and consider what they can do for their country, because, believe me, democracy is in trouble. Between 1970 to the mid 2000s, democracies flowered all over the globe. (“Democracy Is So 2005,” by Joshua Kurlantzick, Bloomberg Businessweek, June 6-12, 2016, pg. 6) Since that time, the trend has suffered a dramatic decline. (“2015 Freedom House” report, Ibid pg. 6.) Why? Because people, too eager to see the fruits of reform, elected autocrats: strong men whom they imaged would cut the red tape and redistribute wealth instantly. Instead, these strong men made a joke of the ballot box. They kept their citizens at each other’s throats until the government had accumulated enough power to crush any opposition. We know these leaders. We can name them. And the record shows such tyrants leave their countries poorer.
One of the common misconceptions about a democratic government is that it controls the economy. It doesn’t. As writer Joshua Krulantzick observes, democracies work best as providers of safety nets: health, welfare and human services.(Ibid pg. 7) Presidents are happy to take a bow when an economy is on an upswing, but in truth, a democratic government has few tools with which to stimulate growth. Regulation is its primary power and too much of that can send jobs and companies overseas.
Another common misconception is that the mass media will provide objective information about elected leaders. People say they suspect the news but when they find an article that supports their opinion, they cling to it as if it were gospel rather suffer the inconvenience of opening their minds. Unfortunately, the mass media has ceased to serve as the Fourth Estate — if it ever did. Certainly, they are no unblemished guardians of Truth, Justice and the American way. They may inadvertently do good, but their main objective is to sell advertisement. A candidate for public office who is colorful, outrageous and who taps into the country’s anger doesn’t need to buy campaign coverage. The media will provide it free because it increases readership. A person of no political experience can look like a leader if his face is everywhere. Nothing convinces like repetition. As the cliché goes, bad coverage is still coverage.
With the 2016 election upon us, the purists are standing at the cross roads: whether to participate in the rite of the ballot box — which soldiers have given their lives to protect — or to reject the election as a charade. Many of them describe the choice before them as being between the lesser of two evils. What they really mean is their candidate didn’t make the ballot and they’d rather pout than participate. Go ahead. Bask in your virtue and sell your country down the river, knowing a would-be autocrat is waiting in the wings. At least you’ll make China happy: Americans know elections cannot really change their lives…why not support Trump and vent their spleen?” ( Chinese editorial, Ibid, pg. 7.)