ok, here is an article i have been working on in my spare time. it deals with not only where the power lies in america, but how we, the voters can actually do something about it. keep in mind, it is in a very rough stage, barely more than an outline of my thoughts!
Where has all the power gone?
the fact is, your vote doesn't matter! despite what many politicians will tell you, your vote has little power to influence the way our government is run. there are only two ways in which we, the voters, have even a chance to implement change in this country; through the congress and through the presidential elections. sadly, only one of those ways is even open to us. thanks to the electoral college, implemented in 1804 with the ratification of the 12th Amendment and again in 1961 with the ratification of the 23rd Amendment(1), the power of the people has been nothing more than a myth and lie.
the electoral college has no obligation to assign their electors in accordance with the popular vote. though they may not always choose to go against the will of the people, they can, and this means that every single ballot cast by an American citizen is worthless. In the elections of 1824, 1876, 1888, and 2000, the candidate who received a plurality of the popular vote did not become president. (Wikipedia
But this does not mean American's have no hope. The true power in this country lies in the hands of the United States Congress. there, an elected official can attempt to influence those issues his or her constituents deem important. voting for the president of the united states is a waste of time. voting for your congressman is not.
besides, hopefully, implementing the will of those who elected them, congress has one other important job; to police the executive branch; something which is conspicuously absent from recent congressional history. through unyielding persecution of the decisions made by the executive branch, the congress can ensure, as much as possible, that those who the people did not directly elect do not abuse their unjustly earned positions.
But there are problems with congress, namely the way in which the entire system of checks and balances has given way to partisan bickering and clandestine affiliations. Congress seems to have become nothing more than a venue for the party wars this country has been engrossed in for decades. nothing is for the people, and nothing is ever about the issues. Congress is the only true power afforded to the people of this country, yet it is squandered recklessly in favor of personal gain and games of high-politics .
So what can be done to air out the polluted atmosphere of congress? We must take away the one and only power this cancer has over us? eliminate the power of bipartisan politics. throughout American history those in power have shaped the minds of the people to believe there are only two ways to look at any issue; only two ways to think. if you are against one then you are for the other. if you oppose this then you are necessarily for that. That life is in fact full of many hues, and not simply black and white, is something those in power don't want us to realize. every election comes down to one party telling the voters what the other party has done or will allow if they are to win. It all comes down to mudslinging and name calling . no-one speaks about the issues, only of the opposing party's flaws. the issue of abortion becomes about who is for or against it, not about information and education leading to intelligent discussion. the issue of illegal immigration becomes a matter of letting them in vs keeping them out, not about informing the people of what will and won't work to fix the problem both sides agree we have. the issues become only pawns in the ongoing struggle of partisan conflict.
we must stand up for what be believe is right; the true interpretation of the constitution. we must vote for our congressman based on how we believe they will best uphold the true meaning of what our forefathers knew to be the case; that only through checks and balances can we ever ensure that too much power is never held by one overbearing branch. we must only vote for those candidates who refuse to play political games, and speak to us as truthfully as they can on what they will do in congress about the issues that matter. not whether a republican or democrat said this or that and what they'll do that his or her opponent will or won't.
Recently, this nonsense has lead voters to consider third party candidates, yet these candidates receive no time during debates and are often left unseen by the general public. this is due to the lack of endless pockets who fervently support the traditional duality of the system. many third party candidates do in fact speak more about the issues leaving the name calling and mudslinging to those from which we expect it. I believe the only way we can ever fix our cracked and divided country is to vote for these third party candidates in whatever positions they run, and encourage more independent candidates in those positions we don't see them running. If more independent candidates are elected into positions of power, the focus will shift from bipartisan competition to the issues, where it should be.
Today our population is more intelligent that it has ever been. decades ago, people believed in the good guys versus the bad guys because our world was divided as such, but now, we are more attune to the fact that our problems do not fit on only two sides of the coin. there can be, and is, a balance. by refusing to vote for president until the electoral college is disbanded, and choosing to inform ourselves of the issues and supporting third party, independent candidates, we can force change upon this country. If we do nothing and allow our government to continue their charade of democracy, we will only perpetuate this country's self-destruction . nothing will be accomplished, and no issue will ever be resolved.
(1)The United States Electoral College is the official name of the group of Presidential Electors who are chosen every four years to cast the electoral vote and thereby elect the President and Vice Presidient of the United States. The "electoral college" was established by Article Two, Section One of the United States Constitution, which provides for a quadrennial election of Presidential Electors in each state. The electoral process was modified in 1804 with the ratification of the 12th Amendment and again in 1961 with the ratification of the 23rd Amendment.