The Masses Were Never Intended to Rule

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by lowendlinux, Mar 21, 2018.

  1. lowendlinux Contributor

    lowendlinux

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    #1
    https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/opin...r-intended-to-rule/ar-BBKtNS2?ocid=spartandhp

    I think I've just found my favorite opinion writer.

    Nietzsche with about 10% less derision and acid
     
  2. CaptMurdock Suspended

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    #2
  3. Thomas Veil macrumors 68020

    Thomas Veil

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    We already knew the founding fathers didn’t trust direct democracy. I’ve just never heard it put in such a snotty, elitist way...nor seen Americans as a group painted with such a broad, dismissive brush.

    And just to tweak the author, he should be reminded that the Electoral College, hardly “the great unwashed” he so clearly disdains, failed us in 2016 too.
     
  4. LizKat macrumors 601

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    #4
    See I don't actually think the electoral college is the problem. Gerrymandered CDs are a bigger part of "the problem". But maybe that's for another thread.

    With respect to the great unwashed, which is all of us except the billionaires: all I want to know is if this, pictured below --the vanishing retail stock clerk-- is still the model of economics that either right or left thinks is viable for the USA going forward. And if not, then why the hell are we the masses not discussing this 24/7 and leaving aside our personal longing or loathing of the self-obsessed Donald Trump and the rump congress that dragged him out of their beerhall into the Oval Office.

    Job USA (2013).jpg

    That there is what we got going for us... A lonely stock clerk wandering the aisles of warehouses in Amazon or Walmart or pick some other behemoth to which individual and lonely indie truck drivers haul goods from containerships full of plastic and polyester stuff representing just about all we can afford to buy now.

    Soon both retail clerk and truck driver are to be replaced by even better robots than the ones in some warehouses and on some roadways right now. And then we'll have no one to buy what's in the containerships, and because neither USA CEOs nor Chinese factory managers are idiots, about ten minutes after that there'll be no containerships headed this way, nor factories in China making stuff for US companies.

    So. How is it that in the little meantime remaining (to the planet, probably) "the masses" have been so cleverly divided into right and left by oligarchs who could not care less which way we cast our votes, bewail our fates or castigate our so-called political opponents?

    Both candidates for prez had laundry lists of how to make America great again or keep America as great as it is or whatever. And here we are still looking at trickle-down tax cut fairy tales and cuts to social spending (and fast food joints teaching new hires how to apply for food stamps in case their meagre pay doesn't pay the bills).

    These campaigns, and the governance that results from them, are not sustainable. What that guy wrote in the wrap to his linked piece from the OP post is true:

    Going forward, the "American People" have only one overriding obligation; that is, to disprove both Alexander Hamilton and Donald Trump by somehow embracing a new national political ethos, one inspired not by a perpetual fear of severance from the warmly-submissive American mass, but by a much more intentional cultivation of personal intellect and public responsibility. Plainly, this indispensable embrace will take time – arguably, perhaps, even more time than is still available – but there is quite literally no alternative. For The American People, this eleventh-hour embrace may represent our literally last chance for both personal and collective survival.​

    We can blame each other until the cows come home but the cows are starting to arrive. It's not your fault or my fault, it's K street's fault but we are who elected the Congress critters who said to K street "gee i dunno, it's so complicated, writing the law,,,, you figure it out and we'll pass it... and by the way, can you help me get re-elected?"

    Until we throw the moneychangers out of the equation we'll remain divided while governance goes on unabashedly tilted towards the wealthiest among us. If you're a billionaire, you're excused from this table. Otherwise, time to quit being partisan and start trying to get the bought and paid for Congress, plus their national and state political committees, on a sustainable budget. I'd say public financing for campaigns, and they last six weeks and consist of policy statements on websites and the back pages of newspapers.

    Let all the middlemen making dough off politics find out what it's like to work at Amazon. Or hey let them open a bodega and hire a few clerks. More constructive than making political attack ads for a living.

    It's not about Trump or Clinton. It's about what's happening to us and it's about why are we letting right and left political and media honchos tell us what we think. What we think translates into our votes for congressmen whose campaigns are financed by lobbies, and thence into the laws we allow to be passed. Right now most of us don't bother thinking and as a result the oligarchs have more of us over a barrel after every new round of lawmaking for the top tier's benefit.

    The worst thing is hardly anyone who needed to read that piece will have read it. They're busy letting Fox News or MSN tell them what they think.


     
  5. thekev macrumors 604

    thekev

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    #5
    The title is a pretty common sentiment. Apart from that, I see a writer who has truly perfected the fine art of navel gazing. He's speculating on the intentions of people who died a long time ago. At some point I suspect people will get tired of deferring to the founding fathers every time they are disappointed by the political climate.
     
  6. jerwin macrumors 68020

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    #6
    has he changed your impression of Trump?
     
  7. BeeGood macrumors 68000

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    #7
    That guy used a lot of words to say, “I’m a snobby elistist who doesn’t believe most Americans should vote because Trump”.
     
  8. lowendlinux thread starter Contributor

    lowendlinux

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    #8
    I think he and I share the same opinion of Trump.
     
  9. haxrnick macrumors 6502a

    haxrnick

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    #9
    Did you ever play sports growing up? This screams I've never had to deal with adversity or loss in my life. How did it fail us? Because your girl didn't win? This is stuff that children say.
     
  10. RichardMZhlubb Contributor

    RichardMZhlubb

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    #10
    Exactly. The problem is not that the masses can't be trusted, it's that the system we have for electing presidents permits someone that 54% of the voting public doesn't want to become president.
     
  11. lowendlinux thread starter Contributor

    lowendlinux

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    #11
    No we the people are the problem everything else is a symptom of we the people.
     
  12. Huntn macrumors P6

    Huntn

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    #12
    Brilliant post

    Here is how i frame it- as long as we are pushed by a capitalist system that allows individuals to accrue fortunes, arguable at the cost of the society as a whole (example: if they have a Billion, that's 995 Million that society does not have to put towards our betterment. (BTW, who needs a billion dollars to live a good life? NO ONE.) The system is built so the few can live like kings, and now that the belt has been tightening for the last 50 years, the Middle Class is on it's last gasp, and automation is about to destroy us, we'd better get our priorities straight or our system is going to suffer a breakdown when the majority shows up on the steps of the mansion to disenfranchise the owner, just like they have been.

    This is not overlooking the aspect of entitlement and reportedly some people who think they are entitled to the good life just because. That's not true either. I'd prefer to see a a system that rewards effort, and for the slack, allows you to live on a minimal basis, but that requires control, fair control, and corruption can't be allowed or we are done. And there are so many other issues, primarily the problem is us, flawed human beings, with our fantasies where divine powers are going to give us eternity for just being good, except many of us are not that good in the daily practice of our lives, yet we still expect reward. How do we come up with this stuff? :oops:
     
  13. lowendlinux thread starter Contributor

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  14. LizKat macrumors 601

    LizKat

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    #14
    Yep. Even Bill Kristol's been hinting since the 90s that Congress critters spend too much time having rich dinners in fine DC restaurants with lobbyists while the streets are redolent of not only fast food but the sweat of peasants with pitchforks hard pressed to come up with the money for supper at McDs.

    The congress critters are not listening. They are too busy deregulating inconvenient bars to pure profit... stuff like gutting inspection safeguards and debris removal requirements added to environmental law after the oil rig explosion and fire on Deepwater Horizon that killed 11 people and dumped 210 million gallons of oil into the Gulf of Mexico.

    The message of an $18 billion fine and new rules was apparently not that we must never allow an event like that to happen again but instead comes boomeranging back as "yo, how can we make a buck if we can't make a buck?" Large and independent drillers alike wanted those new safeguards killed and their dream is coming true.

    Trump Rollbacks Target Offshore Rules ‘Written With Human Blood’

    Trump would argue that we need energy independence and cheap oil to fuel industrial advance. I would argue that the risks to bodies of water, human families and non-fossil-fuel industry like tourism and fishing make an abundance of caution mandatory for oil and gas extraction. I would even argue that the time for fossil fuel reliance is over and we need to leave in the ground what's still there and focus on renewable sources and methods of transport and storage for our energy needs.

    But the owners of two thousand oil and gas platforms and almost 30k miles of pipelines in the Gulf think differently, and they are who have decided that "the USA" went too far when it added regulations to the industry in the past decade.

    Do they speak for the right or the left among "the masses?" Hell no. They speak for themselves and their own bottom lines this quarter, this year, this term of Trump in office (and it's possible if not probable that this particular Congress would have rolled these particular rules back under Clinton as well). And yet we keep electing and re-electing people to Congress whose campaigns are funded by pigs at the trough of American resources.

    It's not clear to me that the uprising of ordinary Americans will be about some particular segment of industry. It's likely to be what it usually is: no food on the table and no prospects of getting it there the way our parents' parents did, with a decent paying job.

    But we are being manipulated into believing that our existential struggle is not about that but about whether this or that political candidate with this or that collection of hot button stances (and personal baggage) should prevail and take the Oval Office next, or become the next mouthpiece for industry lobby policywriting. We never look together at the policywiting any more. That's what that essay writer was saying.
     
  15. Thomas Veil macrumors 68020

    Thomas Veil

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    #15
    The EC was charged with submitting their states’ electoral votes, but also with using their own common sense and good judgment regarding the sociopathic man-child known as Trump. In that, they failed colossally.

    If you want to put it in sports terms, they had the first pick in the draft and they chose Ryan Leaf.
     
  16. lowendlinux thread starter Contributor

    lowendlinux

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    #16
    I took it as a larger criticism of the electorate choosing to remain ignorant on all subjects not so much just politics. It was a frontal assault on Americans lack of inquisitiveness and attention span it was all very teutonic. Perhaps I was reading it incorrectly or reading to much into it but after the first paragraph I began thinking of this:

    http://la.utexas.edu/users/hcleaver/330T/350kPEENietzscheGermansLacktable.pdf

    while not the translation I'm used to it'll do.

     
  17. LizKat macrumors 601

    LizKat

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    #17
    Either way we're allowing ourselves to be sucked into the lowest common denominator of human culture, which is slack-jawed enjoyment of cheap entertainment, and not only that, have moved it right into the White House to make it clear that "it's a thing".

    It requires no intellectual effort to be a member of the body politic nowadays, just wake up the nearest computing device and have at it online. Blue team, red team, umpire, concessions manager? Something for everyone while we entertain ourselves to death. The planet can't take the joke much longer even if we do like the drama alternating with coarse comedy.

    It's all one thing now, a circus where substance is subsumed via ornaments chosen by our society's self-appointed, media-anointed movers and shakers: tokens that are sort of like a cross between battle flags and "Clearance Sale!" signs, and the pols make hay of it all by dragging us to right or left to protest from both ends their infernal machinations at wherever this year's K street says is "the center".

    Trump's draining the swamp is Clinton's incremental change, she would have made it seem a little -- well, no, a lot-- more genteel. What he wants is everything. What she wanted was a few things to make her wonky policy statements stand up to scrutiny after four years. What Congress wants this term is the GOP agenda. What K Street wants is what we are getting.

    Who would have thought in 1967 that fifty years later we'd be less embroiled in public debate over the merits of (yet another) regional set of wars we'd managed to escalate to "unwinnable" status in order to guarantee the survival of the military industrial complex, than in debates over what our basic policies should be with respect to the economy, health care, education, social safety net and infrastructure investments.

    In the 60s I actually thought we were capable of learning something from our agonizing public debate over the merits of our war in and upon the countries of Southeast Asia.

    My great great aunt said in 1966 that we could not prevail in a contest where we were a foreign nation propping up a corrupt government designated to inherit a former French colony, whereas the Vietnamese were engaged in a civil war to determine which side would lead them as an independent nation. They are fighting for their families on home ground, she said. We are conscripted to foreign jungles and fighting for an ideological construct called preventing the fall of dominoes to Communism. The fight to lead a nation they live in will prevail. But it's war will prevail then, I said. "Their war," she corrected me.

    By 1975 as Saigon fell I was pretty sure we had learned nothing since we were still talking as if our "winning" in Vietnam had ever been possible. ​

    In 2017 I figure bread and circuses is where we're at and the rest is window dressing.
     
  18. Huntn macrumors P6

    Huntn

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    #18
  19. lowendlinux thread starter Contributor

    lowendlinux

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    #20
    Thanks for introducing me to another time wasting site :D
     
  20. Huntn, Mar 22, 2018
    Last edited: Mar 22, 2018

    Huntn macrumors P6

    Huntn

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    #21
    Maybe the masses are not meant to rule.

    Behind the screen, the forces of concentrated wealth* are maneuvering to solidify their advantages, enabled by Representatives that The People elect, collectively the people who appear happy to get whatever meager crumbs that are calculated by our masters to fall off their plate.

    * Not a condemnation of all wealthy.

    Why, do we collectively elect representatives who **** us over? Why are we giving the wealthiest WELFARE? Are we collectively stupid? Are we the sheep in this scenario willing to being fleeced or who are too stupid to know it? Due to a lack of informed engagement, ARE WE A FAILING REPRESENTATIVE DEMOCRACY?

    I agree whole heartedly, about your MIC comment. War is big business and we have Representatives actively feeding it. Has the GOP forgotten one of our heroes warnings?

    Ike's Warning Of Military Expansion, 50 Years Later
    https://www.npr.org/2011/01/17/132942244/ikes-warning-of-military-expansion-50-years-later

    From a 1960s perspective all of today’s GOP are RINOs. The party has become a Frankenstein monster that feeds on it’s vulnerable citizens, cutting taxes so their real base can benefit (and it’s not you, average citizen.) Today’s GOP is a sad shadow, lacking honesty, integrity, truthfulness, morality, and most importantly their historical cornerstone, fiscal responsibility. What about National debt, what about infastructure spending, education, and healthcare while cutting taxes to the bone? Haw, haw.

    CHARTS: See How Much Of GOP Tax Cuts Will Go To The Middle Class
    https://www.npr.org/2017/12/19/5717...h-of-gop-tax-cuts-will-go-to-the-middle-class

    With a eye always directed at the welfare of our wealthiest, the GOP is inadequate to deal with these issues in a manner that benefits the vast majority. Btw, this is not an inference that the Democrats are off the hook or that all Republicans are selfish beasts.

    When Democrats had their chance to say HELL NO to the Iraq invasion, a REPUBLICAN monster, mostly they whimpered in the corner and fell into line. But ultimately they and all elected representatives are subject to the whims of the engaged educated/ignorant, selfish/selfless, grounded-pragmatic/unrealistic voters, who in many cases give the Constitution lip service, but by their actions seem ready to shred it. Collectively, by our actions inactions, engagement or lackadaisicalness, we will be judged by history and most importantly WE will end up with what we deserve.
     
  21. Kestrel452 macrumors regular

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    #22
    You mean they elected the President who received the most electoral votes, and didn't just hand the Presidency to who you personally wanted? The nerve of them! :rolleyes:
     
  22. 0007776 Suspended

    0007776

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    #23
    As originally designed the electoral college was supposed to make a judgment of who was fit for office while taking their constituents wishes into account, it was never intended to have its members bound to vote for certain candidates.
     
  23. Huntn macrumors P6

    Huntn

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    #24
    I think he meant, by most people’s approximation, our system put a LOSER in the top spot, making us all losers.
     
  24. Kestrel452 macrumors regular

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    #25
    But how can he be a "loser" if he won according to the rules that've been there since our founding? :cool:
     

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