Wednesday, August 13, 2014

STUDY: Americans have virtually no impact on federal policy

News flash: The overgrown, over-centralized DC Empire is the tool of big business and big government, not the people it claims to serve. Who says that? Just some professor at Princeton University:

A startling new political science study concludes that corporate interests and mega wealthy individuals control U.S. policy to such a degree that "the preferences of the average American appear to have only a minuscule, near-zero, statistically non-significant impact upon public policy."

The startling study, titled "Testing Theories of American Politics: Elites, Interest Groups, and Average Citizens," is slated to appear in an upcoming issue of Perspectives on Politics and was authored by Princeton University Professor Martin Gilens and Northwestern University Professor Benjamin Page.
This is nothing new. We've been arguing for years that the central government is too remote, too big, and too self-serving to be truly responsive to over 300 million people. Reform? Don't make me laugh. DC has rigged the system so reform is impossible. Try starting a political party or even challenging the incumbent within an existing party, and you'll see how welcome dissent is.

There is an answer, however, and that is to scale down government so that it is local and responsive to its people. If they can manage it in Switzerland, surely we can do it here.

4 comments:

Weaver said...

Where's that guy who says I'm crazy for disliking democracy?

I get that Switzerland is democratic, but we have here a perfect example of how easily a very large democracy can be manipulated.

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Switzerland is also well-prepared for war. It wouldn't be worth the costs to try to take it militarily, because Switzerland's ready to fight. I doubt they suffer our level of gun violence either.

Logan Smith said...

Switzerland works, because she's a small Confederation. Even with her small size, and mostly pacifist population, the different nationalities within her borders (French, German, Italian, etc.) still hate each-other. The only thing that keeps them from ripping each other to shreds is their semi-autonomy, and small localized scale of government.

They're really in the perfect situation; with their high mountains, segregated nations, and full banks.

Anonymous said...

People tend to only rule in the best interests of others if they are forced to. It's human nature to pursue selfish interests and exploit unchecked power. Both Christianity and evolutionary psychology make this clear. All men are born sinners, even ruling elites. Perhaps the only way to force rulers to be accountable and maintain limits to power and checks and balances is to "scale down government so that it is local."

Weaver said...

Anon,

You're absolutely right.

Unfortunately of course, you lose power and efficiency with smaller units. So, it's a balance between soul and power, so to speak. You might in some situation be forced to sell a bit more of the soul for a bit more power to defend the rest of the soul.

I think that trade-off between power and soul applies to many things, especially technology and a move away from agrarian living.