To Vote Or Not To Vote
Not voting and the indifference of the American population seems to be an epidemic. The Statistics Brain website reports that with over 200-million eligible voters in the 2008 presidential elections, only 64% bothered to show up and vote. That doesn't speak well for democracy; a participation-sport that requires every citizen to voice their opinions. Over 13% of those not voting listed "not interested" as their reason; 12.9% didn't like the candidates or the issues; 11.3% listed "other" as their reason and 17.5% said that they were just too busy.
In Australia, one of 23 countries that make voting mandatory, voter turnout is 95% of registered voters. The reason is elementary - It's the law.Those who fail to vote are fined for their failure to participate. If eligible Americans were fined $20 for not voting, it could amount to nearly $150-million towards campaign reform efforts, and It's a sensible way to ensure that elections reflect the will of the people. Only 67% of American registered voters bothered to show up on Election Day in 2000; it took SCOUS
Sigmund Freud would point to the Pleasure-Principal as a reason people don't vote. If they don't like the candidates, the issues, or if they are inconvenienced in some way - they will choose the immediate pleasure found in television or the movies rather than facing the painful ugly truth of the situation they allowed to happen. Eric Fromm called it an "escape from freedoms". People really choose to deny themselves the freedom to choose.
Sadly, we are living in a culture that depends on Comedy-Central to explain the issues to our dumbed-down-disinterested society. And the bankers simply sit-back and laugh at the stupidity of those financing their corruption.
One of the CIA's first missions was to promote propaganda against Benito Mussolini and the fascist party of the Italian government. It worked well and set the stage for today's current climate of propaganda-disinformation. The press was enlisted to support National [In]Security and the current government maintains control over what is and what is not reported. We celebrate Condi Rice (a war criminal) for breaking the barrier against women members at a prestigious golf club and condemn Julian Assuage as a terrorist who simply reported the truth to the public. As a society, our values are in great peril; and the incompetence displayed in the government's negligence, allowing financial-crimes to continue and go unpunished, is a clear example of the state of our collective ethics.
Our culture has lost interest in the workings of government. Schools no longer teach Civics as a standard high-school required class. Few citizens know the difference between the House of Representatives and the Senate, -even fewer know the process behind passing a new law. Americans don't realize the impact of special-interest groups writing laws that protect their profits at the expense of taxpayers. They simply don't care until such time as the law is used against them. Then they scream and go on rampages over the rights they believed they had, but never bothered to defend. They are simply clueless. They are authoritarian-followers that "escape their freedoms" by letting others rule over them.
The Moneyed Interest in propaganda.
Politicians continue to tell us that the federal deficit is out of control.We need to balance the budget and cut-back on our spending.The truth is that this is only an issue when the Republicans try to regain power while a Democrat is in power. Supported by moneyed interest, they tell us we need to cut funding for anything that regulates an industry; we need to de-fund inspection agencies, and end the social safety nets that keep the un-wealthy alive. But spending money on the endless sinkhole of the war-machine is not in our national interest (or profitable to their sponsors). They try to convince us that it is necessary through propaganda. Money is seldom an issue when there are wars to be fought (and, like tax-cuts, these don't need to be paid for).
As an example of the powerful influences of commercial television and the consequences of doing something against one's best interests, I would like to reference a pharmaceutical; Duloxetine. It represents Big-Pharma's solution -in search of a problem, much like politicians create a fix for problems that don't exist (i.e. voter fraud).
(Note: You can view every article as one long page if you sign up as an Advocate Member, or higher).