Do party donations undermine representative democracy?

Yes, I think "party donations undermine representative democracy". It would be incredibly naive to think otherwise. Those who engineered the rise of party politics in America's early days had the wit to maintain the forms of democracy while making sure the result was a pseudo-democracy rather than a real one. They publicized, indeed ballyhooed, the people's right to vote, but made sure they could only vote on choices made by the parties. The people were given no voice in the selection of their representatives or in the operation of their government.

Thoughts on the World Trade Center Attack

These thoughts were written to a friend in Japan who had expressed horror about the World Trade Center attack:

14 Sep 2001

Thank you, so very much, for writing to me. You have already said all there is to say: "We are still killing each other."

It is sad.

It is terrible.

It is unacceptable.

But, it is true.

The horror of what happened on Tuesday is so bad that it is hard to think about. People are very angry. They want to "Pay Someone Back" for this terrible thing.

But, that is just more of the same.

Whither Democracy, a Commentary on the American Political System

We are undergoing a troubling period in our political history. As Jane Mansbridge points out, "trust in government is plummeting in most developed democracies." Why is our political infrastructure a shambles that produces so few trustworthy candidates for public office? The answer lays in the foundation of democracy and the edifice we've built on that foundation.

Democracy In America

Democracy is a slowly evolving structure of government.

Why do voters elect corrupt representatives?

We elect corrupt officials to represent us because political parties dictate our electoral choices. George Washington warned us of the danger of factions in his Farewell Address. Yet, factions (parties) grabbed power because we, the people, didn't understand how easily they are corrupted.

Thoughts from the perspective of an American citizen

There is an enormous difference between what Abraham Lincoln called "government of the people, by the people, for the people", and the pseudo-democracies that engulf us.

How can American democracy become more egalitarian?

This question was followed by the following explanation:

With thousands of lobbyists in Washington and untold sums of money being given to Super PACs by anonymous donors, there is a real sense that American democracy is not quite as egalitarian as it should be.

Please note that while these are the examples that prompted this question, I am not looking for answers that are solely focused on removing the influence of money.

Any and all ideas that could make American democracy more egalitarian are welcome here.

For the purpose of this question, egalitarian means:

Can we get out of the corrupt political system in the US?

The request for "an honest idea to get us out of the corrupt and useless political system we live in (US)" is a tall order. To be valid, such an idea must show that it addresses the causes of our present condition. However difficult the task, we must make the effort if we are to avoid civil disorder. My greatest fear is that we'll find ourselves in the throes of that disorder before we've done our homework - before we've reasoned our way to a sound political system that is free of the corruption and ineffectiveness that plague our present system.

Corruption within the Dadaab refugee camp

Like everywhere where great social inequalities prevail, there is a heightened risk of corruption. The Dadaab camp complex, the largest and oldest refugee camp in the world has its share of corruption.

Some refugees pretent to represent NGOs, hoping to receive from generous foreign donors some financial donations that they will keep for themselves.

So, when donating money, as for any other charitable donation, it is best to keep with a known charity, with a track record of accountability.

See also

Sahara Reporters

Web site: " is an outstanding, groundbreaking news website that encourages citizen journalists to report ongoing corruption and government malfeasance in Africa. Using photos, text, and video dynamically, the site informs and prompts concerned African citizens and activists globally to act, denouncing officially-sanctioned corruption, the material impoverishment of its citizenry, defilement of the environment, and the callous disregard of the democratic principles enshrined in the constitution."
Twitter: @SaharaReporters

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