Democracy NOW

Folding the U.S. flag

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Democracy is more than an occasional election. Democracy requires a free and active press, an independent judiciary, a corruption-free legislature, a strong but limited executive and a vibrant middle class. According to Ben Franklin, we have a republic if we can keep it. Today we are in danger of losing it to the forces of big money and corruption. We are being purposely distracted by exhortations to protect our freedom and democracy by exporting it to countries not ready for it.

The true measure of a democracy’s health is vibrant and expanding middle class. There is no middle class in Afghanistan and the middle class in Iraq is in exile. The middle class in Pakistan is quite small. India, on the other hand, has a large and growing middle class. That is very encouraging in a geographical area that possibly will be the center of the world’s attention during the twenty-first century.

Before we consider exporting democracy to the rest of the world, we MUST secure it here in the US with eternal vigilance. Those who are destroying the middle class don’t care for the sinews of democracy and want to retain only the forms. They think that they know how to govern better than the masses of individual voters do. Carly Fiorina and Meg Whitman exemplified the attitude of the elite during the 2010 election in California; neither one bothered to vote until they decided to run for office.

Democracy begins at home, here in the USA. If we do not protect democracy NOW, it will be gone for good, and evil will follow for the entire planet as long as our leaders can and will project American power abroad. We have a responsibility to ourselves, our children and the rest of the world to demonstrate American exceptionalism by preserving our democracy as a beacon for the world to emulate if and when they are ready to do so.

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