Our democracy is in trouble! Our political system is not working for We the People! There has been a takeover of our representative democracy, especially in the last 35 to 40 years, by the wealthy corporate elites. Their 'excessive' economic power has been used to gain political power which then has been used to gain more economic power. We now have government of the 1%, by the 1%, and for the 1%. A recent study (HERE) confirms this fact.
Why Has This Happened:
Many of the wealthy corporate elite have wanted to control the system as they did in the late 1800's and early 1900's. In the last 35 to 40 years they have put billions into doing just that and have succeeded in gaining control of the political system at the national level and in many states (see page 3).
Government regulations and laws that protect the public interests, have been weakened or removed by corporate-friendly elected officials. The conservative 5 of the Supreme Court have added to the problem by ruling that corporations are people and money is speech. The money in politics flood-gates have been opened! This has allowed a small group of wealthy corporate elites to increase their wealth and political power. This article (HERE) comparing the 2012 elections at this point to the 2016 election makes that point.
Restoring truth, fairness, and justice to our political system so we have a government of the people, by the people, and for 'We the People'. As Justice Louis Brandeis said "We can have democracy in this country, or we can have great wealth concentrated in the hands of a few, but we can't have both!
Meeting The Challenge:
Increasing the number of informed, involved, voting, and take-action citizens who:
(1) understand the urgency and scope of this 'problem',
(2) speak up and take deliberate corrective actions regularly, and
(3) commit to bringing more citizens
into the 'Stand Up 4 Democracy ' movement.
Click HERE to listen to 'We Are The
Many'. May you be further inspired to fight for a government of officials that
do the bidding of the many, not the few. Lawrence Lessig (HERE) is also inspiring in his TED talk about the root of the problem.
A Place To Start:
To fix the problem, we must start by understanding the extent of the problem and how it happened. Pages 1 thru 4 look at how we become so politically and economically unequal and why that is a problem. A Hedrick Smith video (HERE) explains why things changed in the late 1970's to create the wave of corporate control we have today. Also, it makes sense to connect with groups (page 5) that are working to fix the economic/political inequality problem and the corrupt political system that results.
What can I do each day to stay informed about the problem and take action to fix our dysfunctional political system?
The articles, videos, and books listed on page 6 about the issue can give insight into what to do. Another good resource is Steven Hill's book called '10 Steps to Repair American Democracy.' Page 15 has information about the book and his suggestions.
This website is for concerned citizens who want to stay informed about and do something to fix our dysfunctional system so it works for everyone. Page 7 has some general actions everyone should take. Also, please check our '5 Minutes 4 Democracy' page (HERE) each day starting Aug. 31 for information and action ideas on what we can (must) do to repair the system.
What is the 'Stand Up 4 Democracy Working Group' idea and how can it work to fix our broken political system?
We need people in each of the 435 Congressional Districts working to fix our broken system. A Stand Up 4 Democracy Working group in each CD would be a good idea (see page 10 for ideas).
What are the areas of our democratic system that need to be repaired and what can be done in these areas?
Page 11 discusses the book by Steven Hill called '10 Steps to Repair American Democracy (2012 edition).' It is a book everyone should read and act upon. Pages 12 to 15 on this website discuss some of those key reform in more detail - include reforming our voting and election system, minimizing money's role, fixing the Senate, supporting a 'medicare for all' healthcare system, changing the ideas that corporations are people/money is speech with a constitutional amendment, and reforming the judicial system to provide justice for all.
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