The Failure of Democracy

Roland Stahl
May, 2021

     The political organization of our country is an inefficient mess.  In fact, the political process seems to be slowly just grinding to a halt, as more and more of our world just gets further beyond our control.  The problem, at least in the version of democracy that currently governs our country over here, is that there is no real authority, anywhere.  All of the careful “checks and balances” are designed, of course, to prevent the abuse of power, but that power itself is so spread out into confusion that the system stagnates badly.  

     The whole government of our country is a horse trading convention, in which power brokers buy and sell their way to their own best advantage.  Political figures are beholden to their constituents (a euphemism for their financial backers), whose motives are almost exclusively about financial advantage for themselves.  It is so hard for anything to get done of any importance when everyone is just focused on his own best financial advantage.  No one has any attention to the interest of the country, its residents, or its planet.  There is no political incentive anywhere for any objective point of view about such frivolous matters as the survival of life on earth.  The humans will be among the last to go – other species are dying off fast.  Perhaps there will yet be some species of rats, birds, bugs, and worms that will outlast the human race for a while, but if sentient life ever grows back again, it will surely be very much different than this time around.  

     But other enterprises going on in the world surprise me.  I can easily understand why the Israelis want to get rid of the Palestinians.  There is nothing at all surprising about that – it is the oldest story in the book – they want the land, but other people are living on it, so the other people have to go.  (And, as I have previously mentioned, there were other people living on the land when “God gave it to Abraham.”)  But what I want to know is how and why people ignore the Israeli genocide of the Palestinians?  Who defends them?  It would be kind of embarrassing for the United States to be critical of Israel about this problem of theirs, since that is just exactly what they did with the local indigenous inhabitants of North America.  (Who gave it that name, anyway?  Perhaps they should have asked the local residents what the name of their continent was.)  I keep wondering when the Israelis are going to try the old ploy of giving free blankets to the Palestinians, infected with the smallpox virus.  

     So perhaps it is a matter of no one wanting to throw the first stone, since squashing your opponent is about the only thing every beast on the planet can relate to.  The game of King of the Mountain has only one simple rule – the strongest party wins, and the Devil take the hindmost.  But do we really want to live in such a world?

     This Law of the Jungle describes the World as a Whole, and it also describes the United States government, but it doesn’t necessarily describe the political institutions of every other country.  The countries of the world sort themselves out into two main camps – those which are controlled by a tyrant of some sort, some dominant political figure who directs all activity, whether for good or ill (mostly ill, as it happens, but you knew that), or they are governed by some sort of working system, like a modern parliamentary democracy.  The United States is neither modern, parliamentary, nor a democracy, of course – it is a strange beast that is turning into a monster in its old age.  A parliamentary democracy would be a big improvement on the current mess in the United States.  The age of the Constitution is really showing.  

     Take the matter of American support for the Israeli genocide of the Palestinians.  Today we read that Israel receives “foreign aid” to the tune of an annual $3.8 billion.  Almost the whole of that, however, is in the form of credit tokens for American arms manufacturers.  So, essentially, what this means is that the United States government is giving, free and clear, all the bombs and weapons that the Israelis are using to bomb and distress the Palestinians to the point where their civilization totally collapses, like what happened to the native “Americans” over in our neck of the woods.  

     So what else is new?  Are the Turks going to wag any fingers at the Israelis, after their own genocide of 1.5 million Armenians back in 1920, who endured their own Trail of Tears?  This is just what people do, after all.  Hitler just crossed a line, being way too blatant about it.  I keep getting this idea about a Huge Cloud of Negative Karma descending on the planet back then, and leaving indelible imprints everywhere it struck.  You know how the man who gets yelled at by his boss at work goes home and yells at his wife?  And then the wife yells at their older son; and the older son yells at his little brother; and the little brother goes out and kicks his dog, and the dog chases the cat and the cat chases the mouse and the mouse eats the cheese, which is great stuff until the trap closes.  We need some more experience of Positive Karma, like the Summer of Love in 1967.  

     So the only way I can process the Israeli determination to resort to the Final Solution in the case of the Palestinians is that there is some way in which this horrible cloud of negative Karma is erupting like a cancer or a neurosis, which is ultimately caused by their own historical trauma.  The only way to break the chain is for a Messiah to come to the Jewish people who will lead them to the Love of God, and they will embrace their long lost Palestinian brothers and spend the foreseeable future rebuilding what they have spent the last century destroying.  

     And, back in the United States of America, Congress can simply decide to terminate the $3.8 billion annual financial gift to the Israelis (don’t worry; it won’t be the first time that an agreement has not been honored – it happens all the time).  Then they might award a similar $3.8 billion annual aid to the Palestinians, and ask the Israelis to cover it.  And that way everyone would be happy.

     But this only works, of course, in the event of the Advent of the Messiah.  In the meantime, standing on one foot is to be preferred over holding your breath.  

     But I just got carried away – I wanted to compare the horse-trading gridlock confusion of the Yankees with the Chinese in their Smoke-Free Rooms, deciding how to play their hand in the unfolding Game of Thrones on the world’s stage.  Once they have decided what they want to do, then they can exactly do it, in a super-efficient manner.  A focused leadership of the One or the Few instead of the Many.  The Rule of the Many is like a Monster without a Head.  Perhaps the Oligarch is the happiest alternative, the Middle Way.  

     In this country, absolutely everything happens in consequence of its free market value.  But certain things just cannot be regulated on the basis of financial interest, and health care and the survival of life on earth are just two of them.  The Health Care Industry in the United States is all wrong, run, as it is, as a business for profit.  There is, in fact, no health care system in the united States, at all.  When the pandemic hit, no one had any idea of what to do.  Everything is left to the promoters of the drug companies.  

     So the whole point at which to apply the lever of change is to shift the Source of Authority from Financial Interest to Earth Stewardship.  And, no, I don’t envision any pax Sinensis any more than I imagine a pax Americana.  The Chinese are very clever, but they still have much to learn from the rest of the world.  Perhaps the Chinese are simply living out their own clouds of negative Karma – and what are they doing with the Uighurs?  Is that the same old story, I suppose?  So the Chinese, too, need a Messiah.  Another Confucius, or, better yet, another Lao Tzu.  If only someone would explain the Way of Heaven to the current generation of the rulers of China!

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