Is the United States a Democracy? or a 'Money-ocracy'? - TennisForum.com
View Poll Results: USA federal government: Republic or 'Money-ocracy'
'Money-ocracy' 27 84.38%
Republic 5 15.63%
Voters: 32. You may not vote on this poll

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post #1 of 29 (permalink) Old Apr 25th, 2006, 08:56 PM Thread Starter
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Is the United States a Democracy? or a 'Money-ocracy'?

Okay, trick question. The United States was never a democracy, it's a republic. (The difference, for those who don't know, is that in a democracy, the leader is elected by direct vote of the citizens. In a republic, the citizens vote for representatives, and the representatives vote for the leader.)

But that's not really what I was getting at.

At this point, as a practical matter, it is the amount of money, rather than the number of votes, that controls who's elected to higher office. (I'm putting aside the issues of voter suppression, and rigged computerized voting machines fron the past two presidential elections. I'm strictly focusing on money.)
  • It's takes hundreds of millions of dollars to run for President. (In some stated, it can take tens of millions to run for the Senate.)
  • Wealth in the USA is distributed very unevenly. A very small percentage of the people control most of the wealth.
Consequently, most voters don't ever even HEAR most Presidential candidates. In 1992, for example, 250 people ran for President. In 2004, 13 parties appeared on the ballot as Presidential candiates, plus another 30 or so individuals as independent ot write-in candidates.

Perhaps worse, if a candidate gets less than 1% of the vote, their individual results aren't reported. Think about that. If 60 million people cast ballots, and 500,000 vote for you, it's not even reported!

True, it's still the votes the are ultimately counted, but people aren't machines. After months of hearing that only two, or at best three candidates are worth voting for, most people actually believe that. They don't even know what the platform of the Constitution Party, or the Personal Freedom party, is. Basically, for the most part, only candidates with big money even get a chance to compete.

So, is 'Money-ocracy' the better description?

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Not blind. Not uninformed. We are party to atrocities. But the response of the world after 9/11 is worth noting. Even our most dire enemies offered aid. We should all be so lucky.
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post #2 of 29 (permalink) Old Apr 25th, 2006, 10:05 PM
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it's a bit late here, so I read money as monkey... but I would vote for money and monkey-ocracy!

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post #3 of 29 (permalink) Old Apr 25th, 2006, 11:50 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Volcana
So, is 'Money-ocracy' the better description?
Is that the American word for 'plutocracy'?
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post #4 of 29 (permalink) Old Apr 25th, 2006, 11:55 PM
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Our form of Government is inadequate. When the majority of the country disagrees with the things our leaders are doing or the decisions they are making for us, we can do little or nothing about it, except post messages on message boards and ask the rest of the world for forgiveness. Sad..........just sad.

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post #5 of 29 (permalink) Old Apr 26th, 2006, 02:20 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by controlfreak
Is that the American word for 'plutocracy'?
No, though I can see how you could make that mistake. It's been made before. See 'Kevin Phillips' below

From wikipedia
Quote:
A plutocracy is a form of government where all the state's decisions are centralized in an affluent wealthy class of citizenry, and the degree of economic inequality is high while the level of social mobility is low. This can apply to a multitude of government systems, as the key elements of plutocracy transcend and often occur concomitantly with the features of those systems. The word "plutocracy" itself is derived from the ancient Greek root ploutos, meaning wealth.
The term plutocracy is generally used to describe two unrelated phenomena. In writings about history, plutocracy is the political control of the state by an oligarchy of the wealthy. Examples of such plutocracies include some city-states in Ancient Greece and the Italian merchant republics of Venice, Florence, and Genoa. Kevin Phillips, author and political stategist to U.S. President Richard Nixon, argues that the United States is a plutocracy in which there has been "the fusion of money and government" [1]

Plutocracies typically emerge as one of the first governing systems within a territory after a period of anomie. Plutocracy is closely related to aristocracy as a form of government, since wealth and high social status have been closely associated throughout history.
I disagree with Phillips, referenced above. In that state, what we have in the USA is something close to fascism. Defined by Mussolini as 'the fusion of the corporate and government interests'. For example, the Bush administrations current plan to turn over control of the internet to corporate interests, in that case telecom companies. The citizenry, who tax money built the internet, derive no benefit from this, but corporations make a killing. Same thing with hiring so many contractors in Iraq. It turns out to be a much MORE expensive way to wage war, but a lot of corporations are making a lot of money.

The USA fails the three part test of a traditional plutocracy in that

a) the state's decisions are centralized in an affluent wealthy class of citizenry
If we define the state as the FEDERAL government, this test rests on the definition of the term 'centralized'. State decisions are not the exclusive province of the wealthy, but they call the United States Senate "The Millionaire's Club" for a reason. It takes a lot of money just to get into the House of Representatives.
b) the degree of economic inequality is high
No arguement, the level of economic inequality is VERY high.
c) the level of social mobility is low.
Possibly yes. You can move from the lowest to the highest levels of society in the USA. Look at Bill Clinton. But how many people actually do?
Hmmmm.... actually, pretty close to a plutocracy at that, but closer to facist. Nice catch.

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Not blind. Not uninformed. We are party to atrocities. But the response of the world after 9/11 is worth noting. Even our most dire enemies offered aid. We should all be so lucky.
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post #6 of 29 (permalink) Old Apr 26th, 2006, 02:52 AM
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post #7 of 29 (permalink) Old Apr 26th, 2006, 02:53 AM
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post #8 of 29 (permalink) Old Apr 26th, 2006, 04:31 AM
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I think its more of a knowledge-ocracy.

because there are more people without money than those with it, they actually have the real power. However, collectively they are uneducated and don't realize this power, and therefore yield to those with money.

If the lower classes used its power in numbers, outside of out right illegal actions money would only do so good.
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post #9 of 29 (permalink) Old Apr 26th, 2006, 05:13 AM
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It's no secret that our country is run by large corporations.
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post #10 of 29 (permalink) Old Apr 26th, 2006, 05:23 AM
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It's all about MONEY and it's not just the US.

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post #11 of 29 (permalink) Old Apr 26th, 2006, 07:27 AM
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I am afraid the huge investments in campaigns illustrate how much politics, most notably in the US, revolve around Money Money Money.

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post #12 of 29 (permalink) Old Apr 26th, 2006, 08:04 AM
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In what country is money or Social Status not a factor in elections?
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post #13 of 29 (permalink) Old Apr 26th, 2006, 12:41 PM
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Mob-ocracy.

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The transgression of the wicked saith within my heart, that there is no fear of God before his eyes. Ps. 36:1

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post #14 of 29 (permalink) Old Apr 26th, 2006, 01:44 PM
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both things


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post #15 of 29 (permalink) Old Apr 26th, 2006, 04:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Solitaire
It's all about MONEY and it's not just the US.
Amen to that..

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