American Politics: How Doomed Are We?

What we’ve got going for us in the ol’ US of A:

  • Massive corruption across all branches of government, with conflicts of interest between politicians, judges, and corporations.
  • Politicians who regularly fail to represent their constituents, with laws being passed a majority (sometimes a vast majority) of Americans oppose.
  • An electoral system that keeps people away from the polls, is designed in some cases to shift who gets elected (gerrymandering), and is based on an arcane set of rules rather than direct voting (electoral college, for one).
  • An electoral system driven by financial power, and creating an increasing barrier to entry for potential politicians, as well as allowing more influence for corporations and the wealthy, and less for ordinary citizens.
  • A population who is either disengaged and aren’t paying attention, or largely misinformed (sometimes by choice).
  • A media that is either slanted to the point of propaganda (Fox), or an integral part of the status quo and corporate power (nearly everyone else “mainstream”), and increasingly distrusted.
  • A weak and vulnerable economy operating on the same foundation and assumptions that caused a recent recession.
  • A military that is stretched past its breaking point, with compromised ability to respond to a direct threat.
  • Police who are able to, with increasing regularity, get away with committing crimes against the people they are supposed to protect (from assault with tasers, to rape, to murder).
  • A legal system that is tilted in the favor of corporations and the wealthy.
  • An increasingly sharp divide between economic classes with decreasing upwards mobility.
  • A marked increase in racist and xenophobic speech, crimes, and laws.
  • An increase in laws restricting citizen rights.
  • An increase in laws expanding corporate rights.
  • Sharply increasing political and cultural polarization.

So, how doomed are we?

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