General Question

Strauss's avatar

What do you think is the greatest threat to US democracy?

Asked by Strauss (22324points) June 4th, 2021
78 responses
“Great Question” (4points)

External or internal? Could it be cyber-hacking of industrial data systems by agents of foreign governments? Or possibly the politicization of the news media? Is it our voting system? The Supreme Court? The current administration? The previous administration? The political polarization? Voting laws? The election system in general? All of the above? None of the above? Something else?

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Answers

kritiper's avatar

Itself, basically.
Every democracy throughout history, without exception, has only lasted about 200 years before evolving into something else.
Obama said it best: “Change is coming to America.”

ragingloli's avatar

It is unquestioningly internal.
You have a former president who to this day refuses to concede defeat, who incited an insurrection, continues to allege fraud, and who asserts that he will be reinstated as president by August
You have a right wing electorate that overwhelmingly believes this conspiracy theory.
You have a right wing party that reinforces this conspiracy theory, whose elected representatives attempted to overthrow the election, supported a violent insurrection, and who are now working to protect these violent insurrectionists, after the attempted coup had failed, and who are hard at work to attack voting rights of minorities.

Response moderated (Spam)
janbb's avatar

Voter suppression

flutherother's avatar

The influence of money on the political system is probably the greatest threat as it undermines the principle of one man one vote and makes individual citizens feel powerless.

sorry's avatar

Its lack of proper revolutions to keep the moneyed ruling class in its place and the politicians accountable. France had at least 4 and is a better example of “Liberté, Egalité, Fraternité”. So, I’d say a lack of proper revolutions.

Nomore_lockout's avatar

Right wing extremists.

stanleybmanly's avatar

Without question it is an apathetic therefore ignorant therefore gullible citizenry for which there can be no excuse.

si3tech's avatar

@Strauss One World Order. Globalism.

Caravanfan's avatar

Trumpism, of course.

Zaku's avatar

Currently, it’s the “lying/delusional/Qanon/white-supremacist/Trump” faction of the Republican Party, which recently attacked the capital and has tried various direct lies and attempts to subvert the laws and governmental departments, and which is currently trying to say Trump will return as tinpot ruler in August.

If not for them, I’d say the attempts at voter suppression, excessive filibustering, voting against the majority of their own constituents’ wishes, etc, being done by the rest of the current Republicans in Congress.

But in the long-term, I’d say it’s the corporations and oligarchs who have been trying to make the USA a complete corporatocracy and/or oligarchy (and mostly succeeding) for far too long.

And after that, just the nature of the first-past-the-post voting rules, and the allowance of tons of corporate money to influence elections, and the way that makes it easy for two big parties to dominate the elections (and then for the oligarchs to pull the strings of those two big parties).

mazingerz88's avatar

Unhappiness in life which leads to people’s inner angels to perish in the bitter flames of anger.

rebbel's avatar

Ignorance, and/or (the lack of) intelligence.

filmfann's avatar

The Right Wing media.
Their misinforming those on the right has led to Jan 6, attacks on pizza parlors that are characterized as having child sex trafficing, Trump, the lies of Bengazi and vaccine distrust.

LostInParadise's avatar

Income inequality. The U.S. now has greater economic inequality than it has had for quite a while. Particularly hard hit are non-college educated blue collar workers, who used to be the core of the Democrats and who are now the base of Trump supporters. The best thing about Trump is that he is inept, but what if a populist comes along with a similar agenda who is politically skillful?

JLoon's avatar

Phony partisan politics fueled by big money masquerading as “free speech”, failure of the checks and balances designed protect individual rights, and total disregard of common public interest by news agencies who sell their objectivity & integrity to the highest bidder.

But behind all of this is one sad fact: Most average people think democracy is too much work, and don’t feel citizenship should involve any real responsibility. As someone said a long time ago – “No one ever lost any money betting on the stupidity of the American voter.”

And so it goes.

stanleybmanly's avatar

That was H L Mencken. And it by far has come to be my favorite quote.

stanleybmanly's avatar

Want another Mencken quote?

On some great and glorious day the plain folks of the land will reach their heart’s desire at last, and the White House will be adorned by a downright moron.

Wanna talk about prescience? That quote was just about 100 years ago.

Patty_Melt's avatar

Fluther censorship

stanleybmanly's avatar

Fluther? Oh now I get it. By U S you mean us—a threat to OUR democracy. But this place makes no pretense at democracy. You will never see a more splendid example of the “little man behind the curtain”.

stanleybmanly's avatar

Actually, Mencken said “no one ever went broke underestimating the taste of the American public”.

SnipSnip's avatar

@rebbel best answer

seawulf575's avatar

A grossly biased media.

sorry's avatar

@seawulf575 the ‘grossly biased media’ wouldn’t have a market if the population were better educated. The beginning of the end was 24 hour cable news. It’s been a destructive slide into bullshit ever since.

seawulf575's avatar

@sorry It’s sort of a chicken-and-egg thing. At one point, the media WAS reliable. People trusted what they heard on the news. Investigative Journalism was actually investigative…not propaganda. So people were lulled into a sense of comfort with what they heard on TV and radio and read in the papers and magazines. And as such, they fell into the trap of not questioning what they heard/read. But the change from news to propaganda could not have happened without that lull in questioning.
But the question is what is our greatest threat to democracy. If the media weren’t grossly biased, most of the division in this country wouldn’t exist, the elected leaders on both sides of the aisle couldn’t get away with most of the crap they get away with, and our democracy wouldn’t have nearly the challenges it has today.

sorry's avatar

How does that twisted media survive and make so much money? It has a ready audience who believes any outlandish thing they’re told because they lack critical thinking skills and many who believe their motto is ‘Give me convenience or Give me death.’ Those media outlets wouldn’t have existed if they didn’t have a ready market of morons, drooling over their pundits.

flutherother's avatar

<rant alert>. The news media in the US are driven by ratings and to achieve high ratings they are forced to tell consumers what they want to hear. The American public can’t handle the truth, they don’t recognise the truth and they will do everything they can to avoid confronting the truth until it kicks in their front doors in an upfront and personal way. For the time being there is just no market in being honest. It’s not a good time to be a journalist but it’s a great time to peddle conspiracy theories. <end rant>.

Demosthenes's avatar

@sorry @seawulf575 I think you’re both right about the positive feedback loop between the media’s fostering division and the people’s propensity to flock toward media that is biased, divisive, and narrative-driven. The only solution would be better education, a greater development of critical thinking skills, an ability to discern fact from spin. But the education system brings in a whole new set of criticisms, for it’s also seen as an ineffective, inequitable propaganda machine. This problem does sometimes seem hopeless, as if the “feedback loop” can never be escaped.

seawulf575's avatar

@Demosthenes You are absolutely correct, except even education steers away from critical thinking skills. Hard to teach it when you are busy trying to indoctrinate people.

longgone's avatar

Much was mentioned already, but I’d add that the system itself is just outdated. So much of the American elections, for example, appears overly complicated and almost comical. Why do you have to wait in line and in some cases travel far to vote? How is there no standardized ID? Why allow such a long time for the ex-president to mess things up before they actually leave the office? What the heck is going on with the filibustering, the gerrymandering, and the electoral college? There are blatantly problematic systems in place that literally could be improved by preschoolers with their innate sense of fairness.

Patty_Melt's avatar

I wasn’t kidding about fluther censorship, but it is only part of the story.
Any social reach is guilty. So from small sites like fluther, to giants like youtube or mainstream news outlets, if certain voices are being shut down, it’s a problem. All squeezed together, media is the problem, but also the solution. We have to have the self restraint to avoid misusing electronic media.

So, I am posting someone who is good at punching back. Rather than just posting the song, I am posting one of many reviews. This young man does a great job of breaking it down, and making the song even more discussion ready.

My point is, turn off what you don’t feel you want to hear, but don’t shut it away from everyone, because somebody else might find parts of it positive, or useful.

So here is a one sided conversation about the virtue of considering other views.

https://youtu.be/G3nCLCrA6jU

gorillapaws's avatar

Concentration of extreme wealth in the hands of very few. It has resulted in many of accurate concerns mentioned above such as the pro-corporate biased media owned by a tiny oligopoly of billionaires and corporations, the buying of our politicians, the Gerrymandering/voter suppression, the political apathy from an exhausted electorate. It’s intentional and engineered by people who have a lot to loose if the status quo shifts back to a more sane Gini coefficient. There is a lot to be gained by fueling the culture war divisions and wedge issues so the working class can remain divided instead of unifying behind pro-worker policies and economics. Buying politicians and media companies is dirt cheap in comparison.

Jaxk's avatar

It is increasingly difficult to isolate any one issue that is destroying us. Our borders are wide open, our cities are ablaze, Crime is running rampant, law enforcement is dwindling, internationally our allies and enemies alike are laughing at us, and no one is trying to fix anything but rather just blaming each other for all our woes. Laws are being changed not through congressional action but through executive fiat. We need some stability. The media is driving us into polar opposite camps and killing any conversation that might right this ship. With all that has happened and still happening, I would put the most imminent threat at the doorstep of the media. They are trafficking in fear and hate because it sells. Government should not be run on emotion.

crazyguy's avatar

I think that, like essentially all ancient stuff, the constitution of the US has become jaded. Unless we make it easier to amend the constitution, I do not see any way of propagating our system of government much longer.

Older documents like the Bible have managed to survive because of people’s faith that the Bible is the word of God, and is therefore eternal. The funny thing is that whole sections of the Bible are provably false. If the same could be said of the Constitution, it would have been discarded by now.

stanleybmanly's avatar

The threat isn’t at the borders. They aren’t exactly open. They have never been more stridently defended nor difficult to breach in the history of this country. What HAS changed at the borders is the explosive exponential demand to get in HERE, which should tell us that regardless of how this place is sliding toward hell, things on the other side of those borders must be grim indeed! And it’s pointless blaming the press, regardless of whatever slant or bias you care to assign it. It isn’t the fault of the press that bad news, and sensationalist crap sells newspapers. That has ALWAYS been the way the “news” has been since the founding of the country. There’s always been trash and deception posing as journalism. The fault must fall on US as individuals. We are the ones who CHOOSE to dial up Fox or reach for the National Enquirer. I agree government should not be run on emotion, but a paucity of intellect guarantees scant alternative. If the population is unable to discern an openly defective scoundrel, what’s the point to any of the rest of it? Of course the world is laughing at us. I would be too, were I not by implication integral by inclusion to the tasteless joke. And as for ditching the Constitution—that is a very tall order, considering that even more than the real estate or loot comprising this place IT IS THE COUNTRY. Not just the deed or the instruction manual for the place. It is the fucking place ITSELF. It is an idea made manifest, and should not be fucked with lightly. It stood up to the most improbable snake that could be inflicted on it, and for my money, we were luckier than we deserve to survive it.

crazyguy's avatar

@stanleybmanly I am not certain if you are addressing my comment or not. However, you do address the US Constitution, so I’ll assume that part of your post was directed at me.

I disagree that the borders are more stridently defended nor difficult to breach in the history of this country. That is obviously not true when you see video of people just marching into the US!

I never said ditching the Constitution. However, I do think that the Constitution is more powerful than the Bible because it can be modified, whereas the Bible, right or wrong, is the word of God. However, the last amendment to the Constitution was made in 1992. And that was first proposed in 1789! Therefore, the Constitution is becoming more and more like the Bible.

stanleybmanly's avatar

Now that is the sort of logic that tells me we’re doomed. You tell me WHEN was the border better defended or more difficult to cross? Do you believe for a second your hot ass could get in here TODAY as readily as you once managed? Once again, all the information in the world is wasted on you. You conclude that since the border is swamped with refugees, that it is proof that it is undefended, rather than what should be obvious: risk of detention and or death is better than staying home!

seawulf575's avatar

@crazyguy Just a question about the Constitution. Yes, it can be modified which is one of the good things about it. But is it possible that our country will degrade faster if we continue to marginalize the Constitution? We have seen what happens when we change the Constitution based on political reasoning. Look at the 18th Amendment. It was passed based pretty much solely due to the pressure brought by a relatively small group. The law was not popular, it led to a whole new field of crime and many criminals got rich (or dead) because of it. But a small group got their way.
My take on amendments to the Constitution is that they should be few and far between and should be extremely well considered and aired publicly for debate prior to happening.

mazingerz88's avatar

^^Agree.

@stanleybmanly You had been nailing the answer to this sort of questions in Fluther on the head and naturally, some trump fans who hate illegal immigrants totally miss your point.

gorillapaws's avatar

@stanleybmanly “And it’s pointless blaming the press, regardless of whatever slant or bias you care to assign it. It isn’t the fault of the press that bad news, and sensationalist crap sells newspapers.”

If you think Bezos bought the Washington Post because he thinks it’s a profitable business and that his primary objective is to sell lots of newspapers, then I suggest you reflect a little more about the bias point you seem to casually dismiss. It’s a tool for controlling the boundaries of the national dialogue and maintaining power.

stanleybmanly's avatar

I don’t deny that. And there will be people who show up waving his newspapers without a suspicion of his ownership or incentive to dictate
its content. The media overall has ALWAYS been a dung heap of slant. Anyone who knows anything about the history of this place is fully aware of this. But honest to God, who needs a newspaper to rate Trump a bonafide fkup? Who can possibly persist in the belief the man merely a victim of the press? It’s an insult to rational thought. It’s worse than an insult. It’s dangerous to allow such crap to smolder unchallenged.

stanleybmanly's avatar

@mazingerz88 Never a rational refutation. Always the accusation of hatred as a screen to sidestep the naked emperor shivering to beat the band.

mazingerz88's avatar

Which comes first the rabidly biased political news junkie-voter or the evil profiteering news corporation? Who needs to stop first so the cycle of threatening American Democracy is broken?

crazyguy's avatar

@gorillapaws I do believe you hit the nail on the head. Massive wealth inequality has been known to cause revolutions in the past. Rarely does a violent overthrow of the government lead to democracy.

I think you and I have had several useful discussions about addressing wealth inequality. My opinion is that wealth inequality cannot and should not be addressed directly. However, income inequality can and should be addressed. The problem, of course, is to not disincentivize income gains in the interest of creating equality.

The recent analysis of ultrafiche tax returns by Propublica does the cause a lot of harm. Because the story conflates taxes paid with wealth buildup instead of with income.

See
https://www.propublica.org/article/the-secret-irs-files-trove-of-never-before-seen-records-reveal-how-the-wealthiest-avoid-income-tax

crazyguy's avatar

@stanleybmanly Now you have really put your foot in your mouth. It is one thing to lie about obscure facts, but never about easily checked facts. Here are the numbers on numbers of arrests at the southern border:

Total numbers encountered
2018 (entire fiscal year) 521,090
2019 977,509
2020 458,088
2021 (Fiscal year to date, 5 months remaining) 749,613

The data can be parsed by citizenship of the illegal immigrant. If you choose other the differences are even more stark.

2018: 39,858
2019: 116,760
2020: 53,615
2021 through Apr: 99,718

I do know that India ranks #5 after the Iron Triangle countries and Mexico. BUT I have no idea where the others are coming from.

See
https://www.cbp.gov/newsroom/stats/southwest-land-border-encounters

I am wondering how you could have missed this fact. UNLESS it was intentional.

stanleybmanly's avatar

I am confused as to why the statistics you quote in any way counter my argument that the border has never been been more heavily monitored or defended. This is what I mean by the futility in grinding out statistics. Our borders are indeed under siege. But there is no need to delve through endless compilations of documents or to scour the internet day and night if you begin with the wrong interpretation of the obvious problem as it appears. What you are doing in effect is assuming that the borders are being swamped because they are undefended. So you waste your life away convinced that those desperate people aren’t coming here for EXACTLY the same reason as yourself. YOUR position is that they are coming BECAUSE the border is undefended. The rise and fall of those numbers proves nothing regarding the people piling up at our borders other than perhaps the fact that we will not shoot them on the spot. You don’t need to compile reams of statistics to understand that no one is going to abandon their homes and trek thousands of miles risking death itself to get here BECAUSE the border is undefended. The idea is so willfully silly that I wish you would stop FORCING me point out the stupidity of it. No one is coming here to ENJOY the borders!

crazyguy's avatar

@stanleybmanly If, for the sake of argument, we assume you are correct and I am wrong, please explain why the number of encounters took a dive in 2020. As far as I know the difference between 2020 and now is the fact that the border is open.

Of course after Kamala gets through addressing the root causes for the emigration, people will no longer come because living standards in the Iron Triangle will be the same as ours. FAT CHANCE!

Jaxk's avatar

@stanleybmanly – The border is not guarded when anyone that shows up is allowed to stay. That is why the flood of immigrants is happening.

stanleybmanly's avatar

@crazyguy will you please STOP the idiotic claim that the border is OPEN. Your own use of the word “encounters” is PROOF that it is not! Pay attention! If the border is a dam and the water behind it refugees, YOU are not entitled to conclude that because the water level this year is lower than last year, the dam leaks.

stanleybmanly's avatar

@Jaxk NOW THAT MAKES SENSE. And THAT IS THE LAW!!!!! If they get here, THE LAW STATES THAT THEY ARE ENTITLED TO A SHOT. But consider this: you change the law, do you suppose for an instant it would make a difference?

Jaxk's avatar

@stanleybmanly – What law is that? there is no law that says if you get here, by hook or by crook, you get to stay. You don’t get to make up a law and then state it as fact.

seawulf575's avatar

@Jaxk exactly. There are rules about asylum, but even those have limitations on the people claiming it. Just because you figure out a way into this country does not mean you automatically get to stay. Help me out here, @stanleybmanlyhere is the US code that applies to illegally entering the country. Where in there does it say that the illegally entering person is entitled to a shot if they get in?

mazingerz88's avatar

You jellies responding to @stanleybmanly imho are still missing the point on how to see clearly what’s happening with the border’s immigration problems and what I assume he thinks could be workable steps in formulating an American solution to these decades long border issues. That the first step is altering something within yourselves.

Your trump-style approach, emotions and philosophy on this is counter-productive. It will never work.

seawulf575's avatar

@mazingerz88 I think the problem with solving the immigration problems is that there is a drastic difference between the right and the left as to what the end goal is. Of course, if I change something in me to say that allowing anyone and everyone in whenever and wherever then the goals of the left are wonderful. However, if I consider that I want actual control of our nation’s borders like every other nation in the world then we have to have rules AND enforce them. Now, if you want to streamline the processes, get rid of much of the bureaucracy, make it easier to become American, I’m all for that. But let’s be honest…that isn’t the goal.

I have known several people that have attempted to enter this country legally. The common problem they seem to have run in to at one point or another was some bureaucrat, drunk with power, was out to prove how important they were and how much the prospective immigrant was dependent on making them happy. Eliminate the bureaucracy, set the rules, and enforce them equally across the board.

And to let’s be perfectly clear, the “trump-style approach” was to ask Congress to actually do its job and address the problems with immigration and the immigration laws. Congress, of course, declined. Especially the Democrats because they certainly didn’t want to do ANYTHING that Trump wanted them to do. That is called being obstructionists and is never productive.

mazingerz88's avatar

@seawulf575 Still missing the point bud. Sorry. You want a solution yet your response is still a million miles away from the nearest hint or clue of one.

crazyguy's avatar

@stanleybmanly It is certainly not true that the border has never been been more heavily monitored or defended. The reason there are so many encounters is that most of the border crossers active seek out the border guard in order to surrender to them. The ones that do not surrender are often chased into the bush and some of them are captured. Those are the ones we have to watch out for.

crazyguy's avatar

@Jaxk I had to read the law twice to be sure I was not misreading it. But what @stanleybmanly says is basically true. Any immigrant who manages to get one foot on US soil has to be given a court date! That was the justification for the WALL, because no matter how many guards you have at the border, they cannot prevent immigrants from getting one foot on US soil.

crazyguy's avatar

@seawulf575 You notice all the penalties spelled out in the law? The border patrol cannot impose them – only a JUDGE.

crazyguy's avatar

@mazingerz88 In all honesty, I felt the way I do about illegal immigration from the very first time I heard of it. Over the years, I have learnt a lot about the subject, but have never changed my mind. So I resent my approach being referred to as trump-like.

I am all for eliminating some of the necessary steps in legal immigration; however, that can only happen after we stop illegal immigration.

mazingerz88's avatar

^^You’ll never be a part of any real solution just in making things worse. This problem can’t be fixed by an outdated “white man” solution or selfish legal non-white immigrants kowtowing to “white-man” sentiments.

Reality TV show host voted to the WH is one of the greatest threats in attempts to fix anything in this country.

seawulf575's avatar

@crazyguy I wouldn’t want to give the Border Patrol the legal right to impose those penalties. HOWEVER, the fact that it is a judge that must impose them implies that these things have to go to court. And it should be noted that the civil penalties are not in lieu of criminal penalties, but in addition to them.

And as of the last time I checked, any time someone breaks the law…any law…there are rules in place for ensuring they get to the court as required. Except, apparently, with illegal immigrants who are turned loose without so much as a twitch of an eye.

crazyguy's avatar

@seawulf575 I agree 100%. However, because the illegal immigrants are arrested in the US, they have the same rights we do, and then some!

Response moderated (Unhelpful)
stanleybmanly's avatar

You guys have to be beat over the head, but at least you are BEGINNING to catch on. The Only VISIBLE people crowding the borders are people seeking to get that foot in the door. The great majority of them believe their circumstances qualify them because they are the EXACT embodiment of every word on that big statue. And I refuse to believe any of the 3 of you that I fight with constantly here is so jaded that you can look at these people and disagree that they are doing EXACTLY what you would do given their plight. I am asking the 3 of you to dump the absurd idea that people merely show up to assault the border as some sort of challenge—like climbing Everest. These people BELIEVE in this place. It is for all of its problems incredibly STILL a beacon of hope to the whole fucking world and I get frustrated to the point of tears at the thought of us with the luck to be here must snarl at them and turn them away. It may be necessary, but it will NEVER be fucking right, and we ALL know it because WE ARE DECENT FUCKING PEOPLE. We owe it to OURSELVES to accommodate these people if at all possible, if no other reason that they are the living representation of what this nation was established to attain. Theirs is the history as well as the foundation of our country. THEY are who and what we are and SHOULD be. And WE should NOT allow ourselves to ignore nor forget it.

mazingerz88's avatar

@stanleybmanly Just an assumption but I seriously don’t think any of the three jellies you mentioned feel that they would do the same if they’re in the same plight. They will not cross the border illegally and respect America’s laws. That is probably what they tell themselves.

It’s always all about the laws to them and I’m sure you’ve noticed. They voted for trump to execute the laws. The law. The law. The law. Reverse that and what do you get…the wal. Lol

I say this based on the years I’ve been reading their comments about the issue. I seem to remember one of them saying he ran out of compassion for border crossers. If I’m not mistaken.

What truly baffles me is how ridiculous the approach of sincere Americans ( assuming they are sincere ) in solving the border problems for real. To me it looks like they think it’s a winner take all debacle.

Voting for asshole politicians to power to do shameful and divisive hit jobs on what should be rational, practical and humane American way of solving problems. Not gonna work. No chance, no way.

And they actually think spitting out statistics could change the minds of people on the other side of the fence.

Response moderated (Flame-Bait)
mazingerz88's avatar

It is irritating. A border deal could have been struck way back during George W’s time. Obama’s time and even today a deal could be hashed out that would at the least check this off the list ( at least for a while if not for all time ) of America’s big and serious challenges that need more attention right now.

stanleybmanly's avatar

You know for all their huffing and indifference, I would bet a sizable portion of my fortune that not one of the 3 of them could confront some poor haggard woman and her kid at the border and tell them to
beat it.

crazyguy's avatar

@stanleybmanly I agree with you 100% that these people who attempt to cross our border illegally are desperate. However, I know many desperate people patiently waiting for their turn. I don’t think desperation should qualify anybody for asylum – there are strictly spelled out criteria for that. As for me personally turning away some poor haggard woman and her kid, I hope the need never arises. However, if she is told by people who are paid to do the needful that her application stands no chance, I would not shed a tear for the woman. Perhaps one for the kid…

crazyguy's avatar

@mazingerz88 Yes, a deal could be struck. However, like the last deal on immigration, reached and signed by Reagan (of all people), did not lead to a final solution. A final solution cannot be reached until such time as the size of the problem is known; and it has to be established that the problem cannot grow any more.

Strauss's avatar

@crazyguy the last deal on immigration, reached and signed by Reagan (of all people)

I assume you are referring to The Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986 (signed into law by St. Ronald Reagan on November 6, 1986) which granted amnesty to about 3 million illegal immigrants in the United States. This gave them the opportunity to find employment by anyone who would hire them…for less than union wages. These immigrants were essentially pawns in Reagan’s union-busting campaign against Cesar Chavez, Dolores Huerta and the United Farm Workers.

stanleybmanly's avatar

@crazyguy You wanna know the size of the problem. That’s easy. The size is as big as it gets. Because the difference is that like it or not, modern communication and transportation has rendered social disruption or unrest anywhere OUR problem That’s just the simple truth. It’s a safe bet that 50 years ago most of the people in the world’s desperate places never heard of the United States, nor had any concept of the comparatively staggering benefits to those living here. No more. The word is out, and the dream of virtually the entire world is to come here or perhaps Europe. But let’s have a look at OUR involvement in generating the crush at the borders. And I’ll give you a quick and obvious example of capitalism and its unrecognized consequences. The thing that is fascinating is that there was lots of turmoil in rural America as corporate agribusiness drove small farmer

stanleybmanly's avatar

drove small farmers out of business, this wrecking thousands of small towns nationwide, and making it impossible to earn a living in rural America. Young and working age people in their millions abandoned their communities for jobs in the urban centers, their towns reduced old folks inhabited commercial deserts with a regional walmart to stifle any chance of small business enterprise.

stanleybmanly's avatar

And what was the lesson learned? We turned around and stuck a gun to the heads of our Southern neighbors. Open your markets to our corporate exploitation or face crippling reprisals. So they did and SURPRISE!!!

Overnight, the already feeble economies collapsed, and it became impossible to earn a living in rural Latin America—places where rural is all there is. And the result? Governments are overwhelmed and rendered ineffective. Gangs therefore proliferate and drugs displace coffee as by far the leading export to the United States. Heroin prices fall to the lowest they have been in the history of the country, and the death rate overdoses skyrocket through the roof as junkies drive petty crime rates to match the death toll for record setting. With NAFTA the final touch, the explosion of people fleeing the resulting conflagration and piling up here is unprecedented. What do you suppose we should do about it?

Response moderated (Writing Standards)
Response moderated
stanleybmanly's avatar

@crazyguy And in regards to the size of the problem, there would seem little need for study. This is most assuredly the paramount instance where “the thing speaks for itself”.

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