We have the power to make our leaders work for us.
I love how our political leaders pretend that government is so complicated – like we the people would fall into chaos without this Rule Book that a bunch of white colonial slaveholders wrote 300+ years ago. Fake news! Humans negotiate and compromise with each other all the time. It’s not hard to imagine a government that would truly serve the people. Let’s do that now.
First, voting must be democratic: one person, one vote. Simple, reliable and convenient. How difficult is it to secure a system that counts votes? Fortunes in bitcoin trade hands every day electronically. Don’t tell me we lack the technology to safeguard our elections.
To truly represent the people, voting must be easy for everybody. Auto-registration and ballot-mailing are a good start, then let’s see satellite election offices open daily in the weeks before an election – 24/7, because people work all kinds of crazy schedules these days.
A lot of people are unhoused, too, or in temporary living situations. We need them to vote as well, so ID requirements for voting must consider those without addresses. And how about the 32 million US adults who can’t read? We need people trained to assist these voters, as well as people suffering from intellectual disabilities. There are solutions we need to be talking about now!
Of course we’ll make Election Day a national holiday. Government checks for everyone – make it like Monopoly, give us $200 just for passing Go (except make it $1000 or more, if the economy’s good). Celebrate our democracy, party’s on Uncle Sam! Can you see it? Well sober up, here’s the most important part:
We need to stop voting for politicians and start voting on the legislation itself! We need regular elections that document constituents’ priorities on impactful issues like public safety, environment, healthcare, education, restitution… Whatever new laws are on the docket for the upcoming year, we should all have an opportunity to weigh in on.
We’d still elect our representatives – except instead of having the power to sell us out to corporations, their job would be to negotiate for our interests as determined in the last “policy” election. They work for us, right? Then make us a deal, write the bill and report back! At the end of their term, we could rate their performance based on how many of our goals they were able to make happen.
Checks and balances, my ass. If that shit worked we wouldn’t have a coup in the White House. Time for the people to hold all these clowns accountable, and the first step is to throw out their stupid Rule Book that doesn’t work anyway. We the people can govern ourselves! We have every right to restructure our system to better serve us in modern times.
And speaking of coups, here’s a thought for the folks going down with the ship: call out! No one’s asking you to take a stand that could hurt your career or put your family at risk. Just make up a stupid excuse why you can’t work and then turn off your phone. Let the rich tear each other up without you. If shit goes down, “I was only following orders” does not play well at UN tribunals. This is their mess, not ours.
We’re better off without them. Listen: there’s only one party, the Capitalists – and right now they are violently split over how best to subdue and exploit us. Republicans want to rule with an iron fist, Democrats think they can lead us along if they throw down a few crumbs and pretend like there’s more coming if we behave. Both sides have pushed us to the limit, and they see we’re ripe for an uprising. They can’t agree on what to do, so they’re fighting it out in front of us. Trying to whip us all up with their confusions, delusions and divisions. Please.
Truth is, there’s enough of us now to beat them at their own game. Progressives and other “third parties” are winning seats everywhere from City Councils to Capitol Hill. All this fighting and partisan drama the Media keeps feeding us are the birth pangs of an empowered new populace whose numbers are growing every day. We need to breathe through the pain — stay focused and ready to welcome a better future together.
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LAST MONTH’S COLUMN: “For He’s a Jolly Good Fellow”