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A Great Democracy Deserves a Great Protest

February 5, 2010

In response to this article about the latest degradation of American democracy. One senator is essentially holding up all nominations for government posts in order to get special funds, called earmakrs, for his state.

I agree that if the Democrats capitulate and negotiate again like they did with Lieberman they have essentially ceded their majority power and their mandate.  That doesn’t mean democrats shouldn’t vote for them or stay home during elections by the way.  It means you should demand, I mean demand, your representatives and Obama to rule as they were elected to rule.  Do whatever is needed to get rid of this silly 60 vote ‘rule’.

Canadians recently showed up on the streets in over 60 cities in unprecedented numbers to protest an abuse of parliamentary rules by our Prime Minister (he shut down parliament to avoid an investigation on prisoner torture in Afghanistan). Support for his fragile minority government has dropped because of these actions and election likely looms in our future.  We’re fed up with their political games and making them pay for it. That’s called democracy.  But we’re also forcing the opposition to take a stand for democracy, which they are reluctantly beginning to do.

The media and politicians on all sides were surprised at the level of outrage, the 200,000 member Facebook group (that’s really big for a Canadian facebook group on a political issue, trust me) and the organized, non-partisan, nationwide protests.  No one thought people would care, “no one knows what prorogation even means”.  But we figured it out pretty quick. We knew our apathy was being taken for granted and we didn’t like it.  And keep in mind this whole thing was organized in a about a month and a half through Facebook without involvement from any political parties, unions or national organizations.  Each city set up an event, linked to the main group; did a call out for anyone who wanted to help organize to meet up in a local coffee shop; they staged the events and invited speakers from all parties as well FairVote Canada and other groups.  You don’t need Democratic party to do it for you.

For a country that likes to call itself the ‘Greatest Democracy on Earth™’ you sure don’t like actually talking about the mechanics of your democracy.  Democracy is pretty much all about mechanics, checks and balances are great, but if you have so many that nothing can get done you have a dysfunctional democracy, which is no democracy at all.

Its time for Americans to do the same as Canadians just have to protest this completely undemocratic abuse within their system. The Senate should be able to pass anything with 51 votes.  Can you imagine the impact of  a nationwide protest in hundreds of towns and cities of over 250,000 people demanding the majority be allowed to act like a majority? That’s what our protest scaled up 10x (as your population is) would look like. Make it happen. The Democratic party won’t act unless they know you care and will punish them for it.

You need to show them you won’t take this anymore.

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