My faith in America, democracy, and the Constitution is broken

With the results of yesterday’s primaries in Arizona and Florida I am 0 for 3 in the candidates I supported financially advancing past the primary stage in 2016.  Given I’ve never donated cash (only time) in the past…I’m 0 for 3 overall.  I think I gave a total of under $200 this cycle…it’s hard to keep track of $12 donations…which is what I make working at my second of three or now four jobs.

The first campaign I supported was Joel Feinman.  Joel was a classmate of mine from the University of Arizona Law, who by all accounts ran a stellar, surprisingly well financed and intelligent reform campaign for Pima County attorney.  Relying on facts about incarceration, the priorities and track record of the twenty year incumbent in incarcerating non-violent drug offenders and offering a real role model for policy change in the way local prosecutors do business Feinman lost by an 11,000 vote margin.  Most telling were the numbers of former public defenders and other local attorneys who came out in support of Feinman in his campaign.  But the enlightened public of Pima county didn’t listen to facts, to good policy ideas or to the voices of experience in the legal community calling for change.

Tim Canova, a law professor was defeated by the woman who rigged the Presidential nomination for Hillary Clinton.  Now maybe rigging elections is acceptable behavior for Floridians in a post-Bush v. Gore world but when the woman who was supposed to play a neutral arbiter and administer the primary process for the political party in a fair and unbiased manner has to step down for failing to do her job get re-elected to her Congressional seat…that says a few things about the way the system works.  Sure, all politics is local, but the voters in FL- 23 didn’t think twice about the corruption Wasserman-Schultz displayed at the national level when re-electing her over a law professor?

And finally, Bernie Sanders, underdog victim of Wasserman-Schultz and the tilted election scales of the DNC.  What can be said about a man who has been on the right side of history for the last fifty years?  My disgust with the Democratic party, a party which I gave over five years of service to in the form of working on campaigns and working for a senior member of Congress, led to my switching my voter registration to independent after the Convention closed.

A democratic republic doesn’t seem to be working.  Majority rule is intended to stifle the voices and ideas of the minority.  And as a Native American that has especially potent meaning…being a member of a demographic that has less than 2% of the national voting population which can’t rely on either the political process for change or the “courts of the conqueror” for justice really calls into question the whole concept of inclusion, American exceptionalism and the democratic process.  And it isn’t just Native Americans that feel the process is failing…Baltimore, Milwaukee, Ferguson…

Constitutionalism is failing.  The very functions of government are being drawn to halt through the refusal of Congress to do the jobs it is required to do…appropriate money to fund agencies, confirm judges, enact laws…the 114th Congress had the lowest productivity in history as well as the lowest approval ratings (9%).

And the two political parties have settled on Presidential nominees who are reviled by most of the population.  A xenophobic billionaire has claimed the GOP mantle for uneducated poor whites and the remnants of the Tea Party.  And the Democrats have nominated a woman who has held some form of political power since 1979 when her husband fist won the Governorship of Arkansas…the party of the working class nominated political royalty tainted by scandal after scandal…whether it be foreign donors to her private non-profit or sending unsecured classified emails on a private server while Secretary of State and subject to federal records laws.

I don’t understand you America.  You do everything you can to undermine your own success.  You nominate and elect the unqualified, the partisan and the corrupt.  You can’t see the consequences of your actions when people who hate government get elected to government, de-fund government agencies and then claim those agencies don’t work.  You trumpet the benefits of democracy as a foreign policy yet are blind to democracy’s failure and shortcomings here at home.  And you shrug it off by saying “Sure democracy doesn’t work, but it’s better than any other form of government out there” while refusing to adopt and incorporate elements that do work better elsewhere….universal healthcare, universal pre-k, low cost higher education, more powerful regulators, caps on the price of pharmaceuticals…I’m over you America and all your false promises of a better tomorrow.  Underfunded pensions…infrastructure deficits…lack of mass transit…consider us broke up…until the next election cycle begins at least.  Oh wait…we’ve already started talking about who could be the nominees in 2020?

Please make it stop…

The views expressed are solely the author’s and not the managers or owners of Hypeoxia in any way.  Standard disclaimers and such apply…


One thought on “My faith in America, democracy, and the Constitution is broken

  1. The Citizens United Supreme Court decision has paved the way for an incredible influx of private money and influence into our government system – a system that, more than ever before, works to benefit the ultra-wealthy, while everyone else gets the shaft. It seems any socialistic idealism has been crushed in the wake of this, and Bernie’s defeat is just symbolic of that.


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