The US political process is money controlled, Big Money running things.
According to the Center for Responsive Politics (CRP), over $6 billion was spent by US presidential and congressional candidates in 2016.
A record amount is expected this year to be known post-November 3 elections — including dark money.
CRP calls it “spending meant to influence political outcomes where the source of the money is not disclosed.”
It comes from:
“Politically active nonprofits such as 501(c)(4)s are generally under no legal obligation to disclose their donors even if they spend to influence elections.”
“When they choose not to reveal their sources of funding, they are considered dark money groups.”
“Opaque nonprofits and shell companies may give unlimited amounts of money to super PACs.”
“While super PACs are legally required to disclose their donors, some of these groups are effectively dark money outlets when the bulk of their funding cannot be traced back to the original donor.”
In Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission (2010), the Supreme Court ruled against government limits on corporate spending in elections, claiming a First Amendment right of “political speech.”
The ruling greatly exacerbated US money-controlled elections, mocking a free, fair, and open process, what democracy is supposed to be — absent in America from inception.
One party with two right wings runs things, each taking turns controlling the White House and Congress.
Duopoly power excludes independents. No one not on board for dirty business as usual continuity becomes president or holds key congressional posts.
Horse race journalism substitutes for a free, fair, and open 4th estate discussion of domestic and geopolitical issues mattering most.
Voter disenfranchisement is rife. Millions of Americans are shut out of the process because of past criminal records, including innocent people wrongfully imprisoned, others for political reasons or offenses too minor to matter.
Around half of eligible voters opt out most often because their rights and needs aren’t addressed or served by the US ruling class.
Corporate interests run elections with electronic ease.
This year the USPS is involved because of a likely record number of mailed in ballots.
The result perhaps will be delayed because of time needed to count them, especially if November 3 results are close.
So-called US presidential debates are pre-scripted, well-rehearsed, made for television theater.
They feature bombast over substance, slogans and one-liners over solutions, and promises made to be broken if elected.
Tuesday’s Trump v. Biden round one was a heated spitting match, slings and arrows substituting for give and take debating the way it should be — virtually never when US politicians face off with each other.
Last night’s matchup was near-no-holds-barred bare-knuckled rhetorical brawling.
Debating the way it should be is an ancient tradition.
As a junior high school student long ago in my mid-teens, I was involved in one on a topic I don’t recall — a civil give-and-take I do recall.
Socrates and Plato debated political, social, and other issues.
The Socratic method involves opposing sides asking and answering questions.
Ideas are freely aired. Beliefs are challenged. Truths are sought.
Critical thinking is stimulated, opinions formed.
Conclusions are reached through free and open dialogue and discussion.
Debates should let opposing sides air views and challenge those of others in a civil manner — ideally by the Socratic method.
Trump v. Biden round one — with likely more of the same coming twice more — was open warfare, back-and-forth mud-slinging ad hominem insults and shouting used as political weapons.
When post-“debate” polls come out, they’ll likely show that Tuesday night theatrics left the public mind on Trump v. Biden largely unchanged.
Neither figure rises to head of state stature the way it should be everywhere — notably at a time of economic collapse when responsible leadership is most needed.
No matter which wing of the US one-party state runs things, plutocrats, oligarchs, and kleptocrats are served exclusively at the expense of ordinary people everywhere.
Post-election next year, continuity is assured like virtually always throughout US history.
Rare short-term exceptions proved the rule — none since the Clinton co-presidency, notably not post-9/11.
Will Orwell’s dystopian vision unfold in the next four years, no matter whether Republicans or Dems control the White House and/or Congress?
Will harder than ever hard times worsen, forever wars rage with no resolution, and police state crackdowns on nonbelievers toughen?
What I remember as an adolescent and youth was replaced by a nation unsafe and unfit to live in — permanently at war on humanity, full-blown tyranny perhaps another major false flag away.
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Award-winning author Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at [email protected]. He is a Research Associate of the Centre for Research on Globalization (CRG)
His new book as editor and contributor is titled “Flashpoint in Ukraine: US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III.”
Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com.