Thursday, June 7, 2012

Democracy or Oligarchy in Wisconsin


“This is what democracy looks like,” a man down the street shouted at me as I walked my two golden retrievers past the six Walker signs in his yard the morning after the election. I wanted to shout back “No, this is what oligarchy looks like.”

Certainly, we are now a Republican State.  Fifty-three to forty-six percent is a clear victory.  But another number tells a more important story: $30.5 million to Walker vs. $3.9 million to Barrett.  2/3rds of Walker’s money came from out of state corporate providers, while 26 percent of Barrett’s money came from outside.  So, who won the election?  The corporate elite.

What we witnessed in Wisconsin these past few months was politics of the spectacle, an ugly dog-fight for the entertainment of the media and the commoners.  Behind the scene, however, the politics of organization ground on, big money shaping corporate-friendly policy and law, reducing regulations, and granting tax breaks to corporations.

If we were true Wisconsin patriots, republicans and democrats would now join hands and work to eliminate corporate money from campaigns.  Breaking Wisconsin’s oligarchy might give us a chance for real democracy. 

9 comments:

Ann Marie Remillard said...

Great comment, Dale. This is indeed a national problem. We all must fight with all our might - get the message out. We will soon be no longer a nation "of the people.." but of corporations. Voting might as well take place at the ATM machines! I do believe the light will dawn soon - we are a freedom loving people. We can't give up our citizenship for the almighty dollar!

eddee said...

I agree with you, Dale, but how will the Republicans, who clearly reaped the reward of corporate largesse, agree to change the system?

Lynn Broaddus said...

Eddee - you raise a great question. I certainly share many of the same concerns, but I am intrigued by California's new "top 2" rule and their citizen's role in redistricting. The two parties don't like these, but they would seem to go a long way towards reducing the polarization in our politics. See this link: http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2012/06/05/MNET1OO2GF.DTL

Margaret Swedish said...

Both parties are bought and sold by corporate money. These next months will see this at levels that will take our breath away. Since the Supreme Court broke the Constitution in 2000 by getting involved in FL's vote count, something they had no authority to do, we have been operating elections outside the Constitution. And then there's those computerized voting machines. It was proven long ago that they can be hacked, altered, and no one can trace it.

So that's the reality. The question now is what citizens do to get democracy back. I'm not encouraged. The right plays to the politics of resentment with great skill. The Dems have no answer. We're in for a rough ride here.

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