We have been losing our democracy incrementally over time. I began to notice it beginning with the corporate reform movement in public education and then began to see the larger picture, that a few wealthy individuals, who have no need for the democratic process, were changing our lives in rather drastic ways; from the privatization of prisons where minorities are seen as a commodity to be used and abused to our public schools where the children are simply seen as data points and dollar signs by the testing companies and charter school commercial enterprises, and where teachers are described as “human capitol”. Mayoral control, charter schools that lack public oversight and yet receive taxpayer dollars, your dollars, the Common Core Standards and the associated tests, all of this has been created by a moneyed few

You can also see it in the appointment of Emergency Managers as in Flint and elsewhere in Michigan, where the people no longer have a say in the water they drink or the schools their children go to because the emergency managers are not elected and only report to the politicians who appoint them. Emergency Managers in Michigan have been place in mostly minority communities and replaced the public school system with charter school chains.

I saw it most strikingly with the Democratic (and I use that term loosely)  primary where the corporate press basically made Trump the Republican nominee with a phenomenal amount of free airtime and gave Bernie Sanders, a threat to their very existence, a fraction of press coverage. The calling out of Hillary being the nominee by the corporate press the day before the primaries were to happen in six states was astonishing. The closing of 80% of polling places in some states and the complete lack of voter information in many states causing people who wanted to vote not to be heard reflects a broken system. This is not democracy. All of this and other actions made by those in power, made it clear to millions here and around the world that we no longer have a democracy, at least not as flouted by our flag waving political leaders who like things just the way they are.

Today I came across this video of Robert McChesney and John Nichols, co-authors of the book “People Get Ready: The Fight Against a Jobless Economy and a Citizenless Democracy”, speaking on March 9, 2016 at the Seattle Town Hall.

This is a highly recommended watch.

Dora Taylor