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The Whole System Is Rigged

From elections to media to the markets, it's all controlled
Friday, August 31, 2018, 7:57 PM

As the dog days of summer wind down, it’s hard not to notice how the climate is suffering brutally right now across many areas of the globe.

Crop failures have hit hard across Europe. Australia is under an intense drought. Warm water representing ‘archived heat’ has penetrated deep into the arctic.  Coral reefs are dying through mass bleachings. The stocks of ocean fisheries are in deep trouble. Insect and bird populations remain in a state of collapse.

It couldn't be any more clear that our society's demands for ever-more "growth" are taking an increasingly dangerous toll. "Growth" is now the enemy of life on the planet; yet there are precious few leaders willing to admit as much. 

What we need is less pressure on vital ecological systems and precious remaining resources. But good luck finding a politician willing to admit that.

Though a refreshing exception is French environmental minister Nicolas Hulot who dramatically resigned his position last week, on live television, declaring “I don’t want to lie to myself anymore.”  His view is that the government is not addressing the major environmental issues properly and he didn't want his presence to give the false appearance that it was.  Kudos to Nicolas, though I’m not sure that losing such a rare principled person in government is a step in the right direction.

Operating On Blind Faith

Most politicians appear to think that there are no big issues out there ecologically-speaking. Of course, very few of them spend any time outside or understand where their food even comes from. Most subsist on the blind faith that our planet will somehow always bounce back from the abuses we inflict on it, despite reams of mounting evidence that it's hitting a mulitplying number of breaking and tipping points.

Sadly, the mainstream media chooses to toss wedge issue after wedge issue, ususally in the most inflammatory ways it can, at an increasingly irate general populace that has almost zero clue about the true source of the shocks (financial, economic, and ecological) they are experiencing. This prevents society from having an informed discussion about the real risks we should be concerned with.

As heart-tugging a topic as 'border kids' might be, the monster asset price bubbles blown by the central banks get almost no attention in the media -- despite their ability to destroy the futures and dreams of pretty much everyone reading this article.

Our media is failing us, badly, by focusing on symptomatic issues that enrage and divide us, while remaining silent on the causal matters of vital importance to all of us. 

In other words, you’d do well to ignore the pre-packaged opinions being spoon fed into your mind by the media professionals. Instead, look at the data yourself and come to your own conclusions about what's happening.

Notice the near complete lack of insect diversity and numbers? What about the collapsing populations of frogs and reptiles?  How about the missing seabirds?  Did you know that humans have worked their harvesting down to the lowest part of the food chain and are now netting krill -- removing the base of the pedestal for the oceanic food chain?

Why is it so hard for our culture to recognize that an economic model founded on the idea of perpetual exponential expansion, while living on a planet with finite resources, is a thoroughly unworkable idea?  How can we all so blithely ignore the obvious indicators screaming that we’ve already hit the limits of that model? 

The lengths to which humans are now going for new deposits of oil, copper, water, arable land and other essential economic inputs are staggeringly desperate.  Each should be a warning sign unto themselves.

But taken together?

Ignoring them requires the same degree of self-deception that addicts employ in their belief that they still have things under control, and can stop anytime.

Yeah, right.  Somehow ‘that day’ never arrives.  It’s always just one more fix, one more day.

Except in this case it’s just one more election, one more quarter of growth, one more injection of central bank money.

Frustrating? You bet.

Trying to elevate the critical observation that prusing infinite growth on a finite planet is not only impossible, but a really terrible idea, has been a frustrating endeavor.

We here at PeakProsperity.com have been at this for over a decade, and we can tell you first-hand, Folks, this ain't easy.

While the logic support it is extremely straightforward, it runs afoul of the majority’s entrenched belief systems. So even the most basic and compelling of data is ignored. Instead,  tortured anecdotes are held up as “proof” that their treasured belief systems are correct.

Here’s an example. 

Anecdote:  “Electric car sales are up 40% in Europe!” 

Somehow this is proof that we're on the right track. Electric cars are going to rapidly replace internal combustion cars, and thereby solve all the issues related to the world's addiction to fossil fuels.

Basic data: "There’s not enough cobalt or lithium to even replace 25% of all cars on the road, let alone 100%.  EV cars still consume extraordinary resources, and release a huge amount of carbon in their manufacture. Massive subsidies are required to make them economically attractive, even to wealthy citizens of wealthy nations, so they aren't well suited to the bulk of the world’s population.  And if these cars were somehow all powered by electrcity from solar and wind, those energy sources are still themselves massively dependent on fossil fuels for their mining, manufacture, transportation, installation and replacement.”

The basic data says that instead of salivating over expensive and advanced personal transportation methods designed to preserve the status quo of our current failing infrastructure, we should instead be dedicating a large part of our efforts towards mass transit, relocating our work/play/farm spaces so that they are closer together, and use vastly fewer resources to deliver the same services we rely on.

Recently I’ve been frustrated by the efforts to convince Americans that our democracy is under attack by outside agents when there’s ample evidence -- concrete, hard, firm evidence which I’ve repeatedly covered -- that US elections have been spitting out improbable and even sometimes impossible election results for the past 14 years, ever since insecure, low-integrity eVoting platforms and central tabulators were introduced.

Yes, nefarious agents may well indeed be undermining our democracy. But the real villains appear much more domestic than foreign.

There’s nothing more poisonous to the notion of democracy than fraudulent election outcomes. Nothing. And yet the number of people rising up in protest on this issue may as well be zero, as long as we’re rounding to the nearest whole percentage.  Meanwhile millions are up in arms about the still-unproven allegations that Russia tipped the recent presidential elections with a laughably tiny amount of social media ads.

For those interested in more detail on just how badly manipulated recent voting results have become, read my recent account on the topic here. And then, just for fun, take a look below at the voting “architecture” put in place in Ohio under its disgraced Secretary of State Kenneth Blackwell and which delivered a very surprising win for G. W. Bush over John Kerry.  The pre and exit polls both showed an overwhelming win for Kerry. Oops! The new Deibold electric voting machines (which Blackwell owned a stake in) instead reported a surprising win for GWB: 

Click to Enlarge

You don't have to be an IT expert to detect that there are numerous places for bad actors to insert themselves into this system and romp about with the vote totals.  It’s a ridiculous joke of an architecture that, honestly, seems to have been specifically-designed to allow fraud.

In fact, this schematic reveals that the shady company “entrusted” to add up the vote totals had inserted a key piece of machinery as a “man in the middle” and not as a mirror server.  That meant that the vote totals could be easily manipulated in a way that could not be undone or later refuted. 

Even the most unschooled of individuals must be aware that vote counting cannot ever be a matter of "trust us".  With so much on the line, it must always be assumed that cheating is going to happen, not that it might happen. Checks and balances need to be in place to counter such abuse.

Several important questions emerge.  Why did Kerry, knowing all of this, concede defeat so graciously within 24 hours? Why was such an obviously corrupt architecture put in place and not challenged? Why does it still persist to this day? Why have no major news outlets run a major investigative inquiry and publicized a huge expose on the utter lack of integrity within the US voting system?  Why do we have a perfectly secure system in place for using a credit/debt card to buy a $2 slushy at 7-11, but somehow secure and trustworthy voting remains a mysteriously-unachievable outcome for a nation as advanced as the US?

The simple that explains all this: Voting is rigged, and the entire power structure wants it that way.

The wonder of it all is that there are a lot of people in Ohio desperately up in arms about Russian meddling right now, blissfully unaware that their entire state is shot through with election fraud courtesy of both major parties. 

Yes, their democracy is under attack, and it has been for a long time. But it certainly isn’t the Russians designing, installing, and defending the Ohio voting systems. 

The Outlook Is Deteriorating Fast

There are lots of things that we should be very concerned about and practically none of them are to be found on the news.  In the rare cases they are, they're presented without meaningful context and very rapidly replaced by trivial distractions.

We should be asking ourselves why that’s the case.

More to the point, you need to understand that very serious risks to your future prospects, well-being and liberty are building. The mounting warning signs are all around you if you look for them, though they'll be carefully filtered out from the nightly news or your social media feeds.

Getting access to good information is difficult these days. And it's getting harder, not easier. Only a few massive corporations own nearly all of our media outlets. They have a narrative they want sold, often developed with the goverment, and they invest billions to refine their craft of delivering it. Better algorithms, in-product placements, and mentally-addictive formats for delivering you distracting, emotionally manipulative context that has practically zero positive bearing on your life. 

In short: it’s a rigged game. Perhaps it always has been, but in today's digital age, the tools of state are becoming ever more crafty, sophisticated and complete. 

Gone are the days when our financial markets served as important signals about the health of the economy.  Today, they've been replaced by ““markets”” that central bankers and other bureaucratic planners utterly own and control. The only signals they send are what those running the show want us to hear.

Our precious ecosphere is disintegrating. The fossil fuels bonanza we are hopelessly addicted to is ending. But there is no Plan B to deal with these existential challenges (beyond the elites' private plans to bunker down and ride out the trouble when it begins). 

The message to take from this is: You are on your own.  There’s no benevolent government preparing to step in and sort things out for you if/when collapse arrives.  Your pensions are already gone -- the math is cruelly certain on that. Self-interested corporations set the rules. Power will never be fairly redistributed due to elections. 

Were a future of unlimited growth possible, these worries wouldn't really matter.  But it isn’t. So none of this is fine.  Now that the pie is no longer growing, the obvious truth is that the rigged system is handing over a larger and larger portion of that stagnant pie to fewer and fewer people.

That’s an incontrovertible fact. But it's reported by the media as if it were a wayward comet nobody expected that just showed up in the night sky.  Rich people getting richer, what are you gonna do?

Never mentioned is that the system is rigged to create that outcome. And that the central banks have engineered it on purpose

It’s time to wake up and see what’s really going on. 

This is especially true right now for anyone with assets in the US equity ““markets””. With indices back at all-time highs, record complacency reigns. But scratch lightly on the "everything is awesome!" veneer, and an ugly picture of accelerating rot and instability immediately appears

In Part 2: The Outlook For The Markets Is Deteriorating Fast we expose the truly frightening contagion currently decimating a long list of emerging market countries and explain how it threatens to bring down the world economy with it. Collapse happens from the outside in, and the periphery is falling fast...

Yes, the entire system is rigged. But when a breaking point is reached, and things get so bad they spiral out of the control of the manipulators, Look out below!

Click here to read Part 2 of this report (free executive summary, enrollment required for full access)

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64 Comments

David Allan's picture
David Allan
Status: Silver Member (Offline)
Joined: Nov 15 2009
Posts: 106
Hulot resignation

I heard about the resignation of the French Environment minister on the radio news. Interestingly there was absolutely no mention of his principalled reasons for his decision. Rather there were hints of a sex scandal in his recent past. Just one more squalid example of 'the pre-packaged opinions being spoon fed into your mind by the media professionals.'

Right on the nail once again Chris!

chipshot's picture
chipshot
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Posts: 58
Psychopaths at the Wheel

Stunning how a small number of people--who happen to have the most in terms of material wealth--have taken over and rigged the economy, political system and media in order to gain more wealth!

They are in posititon to do the most good for humanity and the planet, yet choose to screw both over for more money and power, when they already have more than they can ever use.

They better hope there is no god or afterlife, b/c it probably won't be good for them.

HarryFlashman's picture
HarryFlashman
Status: Bronze Member (Offline)
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Posts: 55
Why it's the way it is.

Easy Chipshot, they know. They've probably known since LtoG was published, but they knew that zillions more consumers were bound to enrich their families beyond the dreams of avarice and so let it all happen anyway. Why kill all the sheep when the 4 voracious wolves of the apocalypse can do it for you while you sit it out in your bunker for 5 years?

Once the unthinking herd are gone, you get to inherit the world. Only takes a few piddling millions to achieve it.

They could never stop the masses from overbreeding, without absolute authoritarianism of the worst type, and people under those systems don't consume very much. Not good for business. 

LesPhelps's picture
LesPhelps
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Posts: 806
Where our food comes from
Chris wrote:

Most politicians appear to think that there are no big issues out there ecologically-speaking. Of course, very few of them spend any time outside or understand where their food even comes from.

The mainstream media wont show you where your meat and dairy comes from, but there are a bunch of independent documentaries that will.  If you still think a burger, piece of chicken, or piece of bacon tastes good, then you haven’t watched one of the documentaries yet.  

I don’t know you personally, but I believe this.  I believe you would not knowingly support an industry that treats animals like farm animals are treated today.  Plus, animal agriculture, as an industry, is one of the most environmentally destructive practices going on today, similar in magnitude to the fossil fuel run global transportation system.

For the record, it only takes a couple of months off of animal sourced and processed foods for taste buds to recover.  Surprise, food with a high nutrition to calorie ratio actually tastes good.

Look around you.  Are the majority of the people you see healthy?  If not, be the change you want to see in the world.  

Frankly, I’m tired of seeing people who could be healthy, if they ate properly, parking in handicap spots and grocery shopping in electric carts.

robie robinson's picture
robie robinson
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Posts: 1199
Pasture based

Proteins have been around longer than humans. CAFO based protein sources are foul and a blatant disrespect of Mamas blessings.

Want cheap meat, convieniently packed and packing little of what Mama designed us for? Enter vertical integrated CAFO, and the attendant diseases both to our bodies, communities, and environment.

nuff of my rant, gotta go move  sheep as there is no other way to mimic the predator relationship( My Border Collie).

It is truly amazing what has happened to my farm since quiting row cropped GMO’s.

 

LesPhelps's picture
LesPhelps
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Posts: 806
Proteins are good

Proteins should make up a bit over 6% of the human diet, 10%, if you want some safety margin.  Interestingly, there are a number of plants that have much higher levels of protein than meat.  Very few, if any, whole plant foods have less than 6% protein.

Two problems exist today.  There is no way to sustainably produce the amount of meat consumed today.  Second, countries that traditionally didn’t suffer from “diseases of affluence” (talk about euphemism), are adopting a Western Diet, as they become more affluent, thus increasing global health care costs and the demand for meat.

Chris talks about not accepting the mainstream narrative at face value.  Being a Myers-Briggs INTF, that has always been my preference.  

Olduvai.ca's picture
Olduvai.ca
Status: Member (Offline)
Joined: Jan 8 2014
Posts: 18
Can we avoid the inevitable?

While I'd love to see us avoid the 'collapse' that seems destined, there just seems to be far too many obstacles to do so. From those who are rigging the system to their advantage, to a credit/debt-based monetary system that requires infinite growth to keep from imploding, and to those who are well aware of the fact that we are needing to run faster and faster just to maintain the status quo yet are resistant to changing it because it threatens their current lifestyle. 

I guess the only thing left to 'chance' is whether the decline will be gradual and take a century or more (as it did for the Roman Empire), just a couple of decades (as it did for the Eastern Islanders), or is more sudden due to some catastrophic event such as a global thermonuclear war. 

 

 

mjtrac's picture
mjtrac
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the system is not rigged, just flawed by design

First, *thank you* for another excellent post.

Is the system "rigged?"  That's a vital question, because the nature of the answer changes the appropriate responses to the problem.  If the system is rigged, in the sense that a few people have conspired to distort it in their benefit, then finding those people and jailing them solves the problem.  If the system is flawed by design, then jailing its current top beneficiaries will just enable a new set of beneficiaries to take their place.

The collapse of the USSR was treated as a triumph of capitalism over economic alternatives.  It was not, it just revealed that communism, or its implementation in the USSR, was not able to compete in productivity with capitalism, or its implementations in the West.  The fact that one system was revealed as utterly decayed and corroded, logically, says nothing about the state of its competitors.

There is a problem in the gap between the environment in which any system was first designed and the environment in which it actually operates. 

Capitalism is thought to be compatible with democracy on the fundamental idea that money is a stand-in for individual happiness, and that money will flow towards those who are able to generate the most individual happiness for others, thereby inducing them to exchange their money for another person's products or services.  Even at a purely abstract level, this foundational argument does not hold up when certain assumptions fail.  It assumes individuals acting from equal power, with equal amounts of money, exchanging freely.  As capitalism operates and some are successful while others unsuccessful, income inequality is an inevitable outcome, undermining the assumption that individuals continue to act from equal power.

Capitalism relies on agents dedicated to regulating away externalities, but when income inequality reaches a threshold, it becomes possible for the wealthy and powerful to buy those agents, whether governmental or media.  It is bizarre to expect objective reporting as a service when it is paid for by advertising, and when a media outlet's jobs will disappear if advertising is moved away from the outlet.  It is bizarre to expect honest regulation from government when elections are handed over to parties which heavily rely on large campaign contributions from the most powerful members of society. 

The difficult truth is that capitalism has failed, and the failure is down to a similar root cause as the failure of communism: human greed begets corruption of the system, and hierarchical bureaucracy leaves individuals feeling impotent to change the system.  In the USSR, people saw that their "leadership" was wealthy while they were not, and line workers did not feel that they could benefit from their creativity, so they stopped offering it.  In capitalist systems, nobody gets rich by creating something of benefit to society; you get rich by transferring wealth from others to yourself, by whatever means are available.  That might incidentally be by creating something of benefit to society, but it might be by creating a need where none existed, it might be by finding and exploiting an externality, it might be by creating something of benefit to the wealthiest few while destructive for a vastly larger number of less powerful people.  Money will flow to those with power.  Money is power.  Money will flow to those with money.

The only solution, unfortunately, is for the system to be ripped up by the roots and replaced with one that has a better handle on human greed.  That may or may not be democratic socialism or, in the United States, it might look more like a social welfare state.  It is difficult for me to see how the world gets there without substantial violence, but I suppose it is possible.  I would have thought that climate change, back in the 80s, would have precipitated the necessary change.  It did not.  

The problem is not that Trump is the hideous shmuck that he is; the problem is that human beings want to find scapegoats for their problems more than they want to suffer in order to solve them.  It speaks ill of our species, and neither democracy nor capitalism have demonstrated any ability to respond successfully to the flaws in human nature.  I used to be comfortable with the cliche that democracy was the worst system except for all the others.  I no longer believe that -- the world needs something that can better ride herd on human instincts. 

Mark_BC's picture
Mark_BC
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mjtrac wrote: The collapse
mjtrac wrote:

The collapse of the USSR was treated as a triumph of capitalism over economic alternatives.  It was not, it just revealed that communism, or its implementation in the USSR, was not able to compete in productivity with capitalism, or its implementations in the West.  The fact that one system was revealed as utterly decayed and corroded, logically, says nothing about the state of its competitors.

Exactly. I think this is another way for those in control to stifle meaningful discussion of society's problems: if you dare question the state of capitalism we are currentlty suffering thorugh then you are branded a commie. It is framed as a one dimentional choice between two extremes: communism vs. capitalism. But just because communism doesn't work doesn't mean capitalism does. Each system has its talking points -- communism is all about distributing wealth fairly througout society to prevent a runaway elite class. Capitalism is about monetarily rewarding individual hard work and innovation which purportedly then benefits the whole of society. There are multiple variations around these themes. But ultimately they are overly simplistic ideals that cannot be just blankly appllied to the real world because it is so much more complicated than that and there are so many more nuances to human behavior and psychology than any one "ism" can successfully account for.

It is becoming more apparent to me that there probably isn't a system that will work to manage humanity on the scale of millions. We just weren't designed for living in communities beyond a few hundred. The problem is that once you get beyond thousands of participants in a society it becomes increasigly easy for elites to emerge and hide their wealth. This obviously wouldn't work in a village of a few hundred because it would be blatantly obvious to evveryone who owns everything. Fast forward to today in a society of billions with a system of electronic money that no one understands, and it becomes infinitely easier for the elites to gain control of the whole world.

I have a feeling that the elites are planning for collapse, they've known it was going to happen for a long time. They have used the last few decades of market control to gain ownership of most of the world. I don't know if we'll get a nuclear war. Probably not because that would kill the elites too. I expect they will get their die-off simply by allowing the economy to collapse and instantly, inner city America will kill itself off. After a few years and population has been reduced to a fraction of now the elites will re-emerge on to the scene, in control of the remaining assets that they've been stealing up until today.

robie robinson's picture
robie robinson
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Mark BC

Good paragraph,”t is becoming more apparent to me that there probably isn't a system that will work to manage humanity on the scale of millions. We just weren't designed for living in communities beyond a few hundred. The problem is that once you get beyond thousands of participants in a society it becomes increasigly easy for elites to emerge and hide their wealth. This obviously wouldn't work in a village of a few hundred because it would be blatantly obvious to evveryone who owns everything. Fast forward to today in a society of billions with a system of electronic money that no one understands, and it becomes infinitely easier for the elites to gain control of the whole world.”

would giveyou more thumbs up if I could.

LesPhelps's picture
LesPhelps
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Posts: 806
What about the fed and our monetary system?

Don't know about the rest of it, but I'd have to call the Fed and our monetary system that, in the absense of perpetual growth, is doomed to failure, a rigged system.

 

mjtrac's picture
mjtrac
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Posts: 8
small is beautiful

If you haven't already read it, I'd recommend "Small is Beautiful" by E. F. Schumacher. 

I agree that the problem is likely baked into human nature by community sizes in our evolutionary environment, and the way in which "power" always builds hierarchical military and economic structures that exceed those community sizes.  Any serious alternative to our destruction needs to resist the development of power structures that are larger than our evolutionary nature can handle.  Unfortunately, I don't see our existing corporations and nations voluntarily rearranging themselves into groups of 100 or fewer connected by free-will federations.

There have been attempts at developing business structures that are resilient to bureaucracy, but I'm not sure how well they worked out.  There was a company whose name I don't recall, <somebody> Associates, that budded off independent companies every time it reached a certain size.  I think the "buds" were profitable during the 70s and 80s.

I think any solution would require first a widespread refusal to collaborate, something on the order of massive general strikes throughout the West. Nothing like that is likely to happen until food-hunger spreads to those whose work is needed for the existing system to function.  As long as we are able to eat decently, have a roof over our heads, and fear that we might lose these things if we refuse to collaborate, the systemic destruction remains too impersonal for most people to take the risks involved in withholding their collaboration. 

Instead, media and governments will keep finding "villains" to hold responsible, which is as much a fool's errand as finding the neuron responsible for a serial killer's latest murder. There is no controlling villain, not even a villainous "class," just a system that is operating outside of its design requirements due to technological developments.  Some people benefit by playing the game well within the system, just as cancer cells "benefit" until they kill the host.  But even killing a subset of the cancer cells doesn't resolve the cancer, because the host body generates more such cells.  And killing the "villains" won't resolve our predicament, because the system will just fill the empty roles with fresh "villains."

Not an argument conducive to mass protest, I'm afraid, though no less true for its uselessness.

mjtrac's picture
mjtrac
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If  your argument is that the

If  your argument is that the worldwide economic system is "rigged," well, I understand that.  But if you think that it can be repaired by changing the people in the chairs, I think you are wrong.  Unhappily for humanity, there is no target to destroy beyond human greed and ingenuity.  Solzhenitsyn said it best:

“If only it were all so simple! If only there were evil people somewhere insidiously committing evil deeds, and it were necessary only to separate them from the rest of us and destroy them. But the line dividing good and evil cuts through the heart of every human being. And who is willing to destroy a piece of his own heart?” 

― Aleksandr I. Solzhenitsyn, The Gulag Archipelago 1918-1956

ezlxq1949's picture
ezlxq1949
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Posts: 249
Resignation?

Worldwide but in the West especially we have for a couple of centuries been taught that civilisation is on a permanently upwards path — although towards what I'm not clear. The development of the Enlightenment project seems to have received a huge boost from the availability of cheap energy.

Australia just changed its Prime Minister yet again after a fortnight of savage internecine warfare, all because of a hard-right faction that completely denies the existence of climate change and is fanatically determined to export coal because that will make the wealth flow in and flow in. The political party concerned is the Liberal/National Coalition. We call it the COALition. The main party in opposition, the Labor Party, does accept climate change in a lukewarm way but has been brainwashed by neoliberalism.

A book all of you must read is Wilful Blindness by Margaret Heffernan. I've recommended this before and do so again. It goes into detail about how even educated, "sophisticated" people can close their eyes to the most appalling situations and their egregious, damaging, even fatal consequences. I am sure we can all think of examples.

After all that training and conditioning and generation of expectations and forming of cultural choices, it's evidently next to impossible to re-educate the public in numbers large enough to change the dominant narrative. People have their fond dreams, and it's an awfully hard task to convince them that their dreams may become nightmares..

Tread softly, for you tread on my dreams. — Yeats

But we can afford no longer to tread softly! Nor PP nor all its likeminded websites, nor all the movements like Transition Towns, have garnered the authority, much less the the mandate, to change society's dreams and course.

How long might any collapse take? The British Empire collapsed in about 60 years; its peak was arguably Queen Victoria's Golden Jubilee in 1887. It was dealt two huge hammer blows by two ruinously expensive world wars. When I was young plenty of people were still alive who vividly recalled the Empire as a huge, global, busy, thriving enterprise. It was a Good Thing. All gone.

And unlike the Roman empire, the world doesn't have a comparatively large reservoir of untapped resources to collapse back into and rebuild.

In any event, I think we've run out of time retrieve the situation. The dreams of PP and TT and all the rest will not come true. This is something you and I will have to adjust to. So what shall we do? Let us make the best of our local opportunities. I'm not going down without a fight.

pgp's picture
pgp
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Posts: 213
Demcracy is a broken institution regardless of vote counting...

History is full of change that was only possible through dictatorship, that's because belief and tradition often need to be broken down by force.  Relying on democratic common sense, a shift in values or an awakening of awareness to rescue a society has rarely if ever worked in the history of mankind. 

Even before democracy as we know it tradition and religion has always determined direction.  So finally after everyone with a pulse was given the right to vote, elections simply became fashion parades driven by media opinion and aggressive advertising.

While the US electoral system might well be corrupt it seems unlikely that the country would suddenly be saved if it dumped the electronic voting system and went back to paper.  That's because a vote for any political candidate is a vote for the same ignorance and tradition that got us here in the first place.  Even countries where the vote is still limited to paper, the same pro establishment attitudes prevail so that elections yield no change.

Modern democracy is a failure but that isn't to say a better political system exists to replace it.  Indeed democracy in principle makes sense even if its modern idealistic execution lacks fidelity.  That's because at its heart it depends on the rule of law, the concept that law is the ultimate authority.  It is the rule of law that needs to be empowered again as the foundation of "western" politics. 

Of course, that doesn't mean more court room battles at every new act of parliament or more lobbyist lawyering-up to water down every new bill.  It means changing the constitution to bind governments so they operate wholly within the law.  It means creating a democracy that is less corruptible.  It means creating a government that runs more like a West-European court room and less like a TV show.  It means having a parliament refereed by a jury of common people, not by a corruptible senate of elites or house-of-lords. 

In other words bring back the rule of law.  Extricate political influence (government or lobbyist) from the courts and use a jury of peers to ratify decisions and audit government activities.  Select such a jury randomly from an educated but impartial group of middle and lower-class citizens and recycle them frequently.  

Insert democratic process, the rule of common-law, directly into the machinery of government and scrap the establishment system of three or four year dictatorships we have now.  Evolve the constitutions (everywhere) don't just idolise the documents that define them like they are some kind of religious scrolls.

Pipyman's picture
Pipyman
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Science

Should be added to the “rigged” list. This is what many who see those questioning scientific consensus as nut jobs don’t seem to understand. We live in a time where corporate interests and funding sources in/for research must be considered before accepting the “scientific consensus”. Especially if that consensus seems to fly in the face of your own “bs” detector. The undermining of science is the most worrying of all...

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LesPhelps
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Pipyman wrote:Should be
Pipyman wrote:

Should be added to the “rigged” list. This is what many who see those questioning scientific consensus as nut jobs don’t seem to understand. We live in a time where corporate interests and funding sources in/for research must be considered before accepting the “scientific consensus”. Especially if that consensus seems to fly in the face of your own “bs” detector. The undermining of science is the most worrying of all...

I have great respect for the scientific method and a few stand out scientists, but the majority won’t rock the boat, because that is not where the funding lies.  That same respect does not cover most “scientists,” for the reason you mention.

Quote:

Of the 14-member committee largely responsible for creating the U.S. dietary guidelines, 10 members have financial ties to the food and agriculture industries.

Quote:

Faced with considerable evidence indicating deteriorating health of our children, why does the USDA want to feed our children in this way? Why are the meager and meaningless dietary changes suggested by the Dietary Guidelines used to assess the nutritional quality of the program? It would be a ruse to suggest that a program meeting these guidelines is any healthier, especially with the methods now used to assess the dietary quality and consequent nutritional health of children.

Why is the USDA given the responsibility for these guidelines when it is well known that they are more interested in protecting the health of the livestock industry than the health of our children? And by the way, why does the USDA even run the school lunch program? Is it because they want to be assured that their huge surplus of unhealthful food subsidies (especially milk, meat and oil) is adequately distributed?

chipshot's picture
chipshot
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The Elites Are Going to Inherit Hell

Mark_BC:  "After a few years and population has been reduced to a fraction of now the elites will re-emerge on to the scene, in control of the remaining assets that they've been stealing up until today."

I'm surprised you would make such a statement, Mark, as you're well informed on the climate situation.

How do the elites plan on coping w a climate spinning out of control and the collapse of oceans and ecosystems worldwide?  Think it will be a hellacious world w a terrible quality of life that no one can survive for long.  But then, that's probably exactly what they deserve.

 

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SagerXX
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Panic now and beat the rush!

There was no one single moment, but it was roughly 5-6 years ago that I gave up hope.

I finally figured out that hope was the fancy girlfriend that I simply could not afford.

When it became utterly clear that Obama was *not* actually going to be a change factor, just an especially smooth politics-as-usual actor (right up there with Bill C, one of the all-time greats), it became clear to me that the system was not going to actually attempt to resolve The Predicament[s] which constitute[s] the core crisis our our civilization.  Whether that was deliberate malevolence, simple ignorance, or sheer incompetence on the part of those in power (I later decided) was of no consequence.  

What mattered is that (as GW once said) This Sucker Is Going Down.

How far down, and in what ways, remains to be seen (and is, in fact, partly under our [local] control).  Total collapse?  Mere privation (like the Great Depression)?  An extended wartime scenario (seems more and more likely the louder the media gets with this Russia Did It BS), which would of course include serious austerity (for the masses, not the elites of course)?

So, I simplified the ever-lovin'-heck out of my life, and stopped being mad about losing my life savings in the housing crash of '08-'09.  (Soon enough, everybody who has their life savings invested inside the system will lose most or all of their life savings, too, so I'm not special like that...)

I moved to a place where year 'round gardening is do-able (as is aquaculture) and focused my life down to a few jobs:  the makin' (just enough) money job, the fostering community job, the cultivating good health job and the having fun and loving the people around me job.*  I work 7 days a week at these jobs.  I'm happy and healthy (as happy as one can be knowing what I know and seeing what I see).  My goal is to get to the place where if This Sucker Goes Down, my routine will not be muchly altered (except maybe I'll have to ride my bike everywhere, since gas for the car will be $40/gallon, or just unavailable).  Not there yet, but on my way.

And, since you've allowed me to preach this long, let me preach one more point --

In that last paragraph, I said I'm as happy and healthy as one can be given what I know and what I see going on.  Any habitue of PP and persons of like mind can certainly wreck their health, emotional state and mental well-being by carrying around the knowledge we have about where this all ends up.  Mass media can be crazy-making and navigating the social media world, full of the unconscious and programmed minds of friends and loved ones can make anybody heartsick.  SO:  be certain that you are unplugging regularly from all that and emptying all that crap out of your mind and heart.  Do whatever works (for me, Tai Ji Quan and time in the ocean) but DO IT.  Me and my fancy (accurate!) worldview can't help anybody if I'm suffering from ulcers and heart disease and neurotic futurephobia.  

My love and esteem for the PP fam is not attenuated by distance or time.  

VIVA -- Sager

 

*  I also made a massive but beatifically lovely error: I had a kid at age 51.  First time dad, docs said a decade ago it couldn't possibly happen for me (so I don't beat myself up for adding this ridiculously-complicating detail to my life at this ridiculous time in history).  No apologies.  The kid is great.  Besides, in a few more years, I can get him to do some of my chores for me.  <smile>

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Petey1
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Sager

Well said Sager!

ezlxq1949's picture
ezlxq1949
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The elites have made their own hell

and, thinking they are safe and immune from whatever happens too us proles, they have locked the gates to their own hell from the inside.

Good. Let them stay there and enjoy their rich banquet of consequences.

As for we proles, having been cleansed of the psychopaths and sociopaths, we'll just have to muddle on, and maybe do a better job of it.

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nigel
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1984

Chris you have become the protagonist in 1984. You have become Winston, and while your normal style of talking around the core of corruption has shielded you somewhat from insanity of our culture, this new direct style will sooner or later place you square in the path of the powers that be. Maybe ezlxq1949 is correct and they will face their own consequences, maybe George Orwell will be correct and our society will sink deeper than it has now and in which case I fear that you will meet Winston's fate.

I understand the truth in your words, and I understand the passion you have but I would suggest that if you continue you will be the nail that is sticking out.

I would suggest Sager's philosophy is better for long term peace, he is worth listening to.

Still if you are aware where open attacks on the powers that be will land you, and you are aware of the consequences and are prepared to accept them, then you have nobility of character and courage that I admire.

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SagerXX
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nigel wrote: I would suggest
nigel wrote:

I would suggest Sager's philosophy is better for long term peace, he is worth listening to.

I've had the pleasure of spending some time with CM in close quarters (I helped set up a symposium in the Hudson Valley of NY State regarding the 3Es that CM ran, waaaay back in...jeez, 2010?), and he is who he is.  He is totally as he presents himself.  An authentic figure (and there is much more to him than what he presents here, for what that's worth, and he's just as passionate about the rest as he is about the core issues here at PP).

My philosophy and way work for me because I'm me.  I suspect CM must do as he does because it's in congruence with his inmost truth and self.  I would hate to think he were ever to become a sticking-up nail (and therefore a target for some repressive hammer).  But I believe that one reason we're sliding so quickly and without (meaningful) protest or pushback is because the repression is so *soft*.  More Brave New World than 1984.  So, methinks hammers aren't the danger, but soft, comfortable couches (bought on credit!) and cheap subscriptions to Netflix and Amazon Prime.  

Happily (for us), CM can easily outsmart and escape any trap in which the bait is Netflix and Chill.  <smile>

VIVA -- Sager

 

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nigel
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Good reply

That was polite and thoughtful. The insights are appreciated.

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acesovereggs
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Add more nails

"So, methinks hammers aren't the danger, but soft, comfortable couches (bought on credit!) and cheap subscriptions to Netflix and Amazon Prime."

 
Yep.  The ranks of the nails must increase (as they are, slowly) so that there are too many of them to hammer. 
 
Also, using hammers takes energy.  I like to think the hammer wielders will be under the same energy constraints as the rest of us.
treebeard's picture
treebeard
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Bannish the word collapse

While it is interesting to look for these major inflection points, I think putting a label ("collapse") on a presupposed future event and then trying to fill in the details after the fact is not a sound thinking process because it creates a situation in which present actions are organized around what we imagine that collapse event to look like. Based on current events, it is pretty easy to imagine the horrific "Mad Max" scenario coming into play.  This is the very definition of living in fear, it tears us out of the present moment and makes us victims of a future moment coming at us.  It obfuscates the fact that we are co-creators of the reality in which we inhabit.  Now.  It creates incentives for behaviors that are actually counter productive to solving our problems.

We know in fairly high resolution the way we are currently living is unsustainable, that much is obvious.  Much of the energy here is devoted to putting data around that fact.  And much of that is in response to the attemps of the powers that be to separate us from the reality of what is happening to us. Things are fine, unemployment is low, America is going to be energy independent in the near future, the economy is great, global warming is not real, there is no inflation, and on and on.

Then we spend a lot of time trying to imagine the thinking process of those in whom we have given our power to.  Those that are making the decisions to keep this insane game going.  Are they stupid, evil, greedy, servile, or completely insane?  Are they part of an all powerful cabal, or individual actors. But I think that we already know what the problem is.  It is the hubris of power. And that problem is as old as humanity.  And the power that feeds this hubris is the power that we have given them.

To argue strenuously for the reality of the collapse scenario, is to cede your power to act in the present moment.  It is to look toward outside events to do for us what we feel uncapable of doing for ourselves in the present moment.  If we are fully living our true self in the present moment then the nature and details of future events become less relevant.  New information becomes part of the process of modifying our behavior now, living fully to align our inner and outer realities.  The process of the current transformation is both individual and collective, from a nondualistic point of view they are the same thing, but to neglect one aspect damages the other.  It seems in our overly externally focused culture, inner realities are often neglected.

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robie robinson
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Kinda true

   We are fast approaching the stage of the ultimate inversion: the stage where the government is free to do anything it pleases, while the citizens may act only by permission.

Ayn Rand

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dcm
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beat the elites to their treats and lessons from the streets

Maybe its the movie maker in me. Maybe its the criminal lawyer in me. Maybe I'm just pissed. But if the elites think they can stack their way out of this, or build a wall, dig a cave, or just carry some big guns, they're in for a big surprise.

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Broadspectrum
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It Is More Than Just Paper Ballots

Hi All,

Last year the opportunity passed for the passage of the 2017 Election Reform Act (2017 ERA).  It was put forth by Cynthia McKenney and Robert David Steele. I bet most of you never heard of it.  Here's the laundry list of what it was going to do.

The planks include:

  • Universal registration of voters, including prisoners
  • Free and equal ballot access for all citizens
  • Tightly drawn, un-gerrymandered districts
  • Free and equal public funding
  • Free and equal media access
  • Inclusive debates
  • Open primaries
  • Election Day holiday, free public transport
  • Paper ballots and exit polls
  • Ranked choice voting, instant runoff to include minority party candidates
  • Transparency in legislation -- no secret clauses
  • Economic and financial democracy -- end opposition to unions, nationalize central banks

Recognizing that this platform has been formulated by a "left-winger" and a "right-winger" should be cause for encouragement, if not celebration.  It illustrates what can happen when left and right come front and center to create a new conversation, instead of the divisive one that has kept corruption in the driver's seat.

How do you like that?  There are organizations that champion one or two of the planks but it is the 2017 ERA that put them all together.  Support was lacking if not non-exisitent in Congress.  They aren't serious about making the changes because it goes against their best interests which are not the interests of the American People.  

My U.S. Senator sends me surveys asking me to identify the issue or issues most important to me.  It is usually a long, comprehensive list but it has never included Election Reform.  So I use the Comments section to say that and ask for it to be included on the next survey but it so far hasn't.  Because, until we do have election reform, none of the many other important issues that you and I may care about will be adequately addressed.  

There are only 2 types of person in the Western world of legality, Real or Natural Persons vs. Articificial Persons.  Natural Persons are flesh and blood, breathing, drinking and eating human beings.  We all share commen values:  Clean air, clean water, nutritious food, an education and health care.  These are the most basic human values.  Artificial Persons (APs), i.e. corporations do not share those values.  That's why APs pollute the air and water supplies and wants to control all aspects of food production, destroy the education system and keep us from having affordable health care.  APs value control and money.

Therefore, the real battle is truly between Real Persons (RPs) and the APs. And guess what?  The APs are winning , abetted by misguided RPs that don't know what they are really doing.  Those RPs are helping APs destroy RPs.  How stupid.  But there is a better way.  The link below has been posted before but there has been zero reaction to it (unless I missed any reaction).

https://medium.com/training-the-mind-to-see-new-horizons/the-progressive...

From the linked to article I have mentioned Deliberate Intent before. It is defined as,

The practice of Deliberate Intent is about purposefully withdrawing your fear and fascination around a bad (or evil) situation once you become aware of it by using focused, deliberate intent. You cannot do this by trying to stop thinking about it. You cannot do this by trying to ‘figure out’ the situation. The law demands that you withdraw your focus of attention and bring it instead towards the creation of a new paradigm of experience.

A friend of mine is suporting a certain candidate for Congress.  He told me that his Facebook posts in support of the candiate get no "Likes".  But if he posts a cat video or something similar he gets a bunch of "Likes".  That's SAD!!  Nothing will change unless we want it too.  If a person keeps thinking the way he or she is then they will continue to manifist the reality that is being experienced.  Change your mind and your world will change too.  I know it works because I have done it.

Peace for Real,

Broadspectrum

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davefairtex
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corruption

Well I certainly never heard about the Election Reform Act.

Those changes would end up causing a revolution in terms of who stayed in Congress and what they were able to get done.  Its almost everything what we need.  Public funding means corporate corruption no longer matters as much.  You still need to worry about the revolving door - jobs after "public service" - if we want to nail the door completely shut, but what you've described is definitely an 80% solution, and it may well be good enough.

There are so many things that are popular enough to get passed, but corporate corruption stands in the way.

 

 

 

acesovereggs's picture
acesovereggs
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Drawing lots instead of elections

Chris Hedges interviews David Von Reybrouk, author of 'Against Elections' in his most recent RT work. 

The author makes a pretty good case for drawing lots (random, 1 time service only, sort of like jury duty) instead of elections. 

He states the ancient Greek philosophers advocated this as a better system than elections.  He explains much better than I could. 

Food for thought. 

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SingleSpeak
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CAFO
robie robinson wrote:

Proteins have been around longer than humans. CAFO based protein sources are foul and a blatant disrespect of Mamas blessings.

CAFO was a new acronym to me. If it was to you too, it means Consentrated Animal Feeding Operation. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Concentrated_animal_feeding_operation

SS

treebeard's picture
treebeard
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Corruption indeed

In both houses of congress, military industrial security complex and the media to name just a few. Someone suggested that the only way we will get our republic back is if King dollar fails. I would tend to agree, I think that a multipolar world is in the relatively near offing, global transactions and trade are moving more rapidly out of dollar than anyone anticipated.  US response, massive increases in the military budget, and beligerance on the world stage.  As the petrodollar system crumbles, we will become increasingly irrelavant if we can't learn to have coherrent relationships with other nations that are not based on unilateralism.

robie robinson's picture
robie robinson
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Thanks SS

I have farmed around CAFO’s most my life and thought it was, confined animal feeding operation.

TechGuy's picture
TechGuy
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Posts: 435
Re: 2017 Election Reform Act

Regarding the "2017 Election Reform Act"

Most are terrible changes, that will just empower the gov't and more socialism. Really the only people that should be able to vote are taxpayers (and only those that pay more taxes then the recieve in benefits\handouts) and veterans. Why is "fair" to permit a person who pays no taxes get to decide on indirect gov't spending? Obviously people on welfare or collecting entitlements want more free stuff, especially if they are not paying for it. People that want more free stuff are going to vote for politicans that promise them more free stuff! Its like having an option: Choose the "free beer" party or the "pay for your own beer" party. 99% of the people given this choice, are going to go to the "free beer" party. 

Originally the US gov't was funded by exercise & tariffs (no income tax), and voting was limited to landowners. Thus keeping gov't spending in check. If the country originally had an income tax system I am sure the founding fathers would have limited voting to those who pay taxes.

 

 

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thc0655
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Either/or

Either repeal the income tax and let everyone vote, or keep the income tax and only let tax payers vote.

Either Citizens with ID only can vote, or anybody can vote who can get to the polls or send in an absentee ballot (legal or illegal, dead or alive, one ballot or more).

Mohammed Mast's picture
Mohammed Mast
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Posts: 193
Pay taxes to vote

Well he may not vote but he doesn't pay taxes and he got elected president. hmmmm.

Matt Holbert's picture
Matt Holbert
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Posts: 130
Small is Beautiful

But is this small? [Note: My apologies for re-linking, but it is important for society to look at the graphic and contemplate how screwed we are.] Zoom out to a world view at flightradar24.com. If you think that this type of behavior is not impacting the climate, you are cognitively impaired. And by the way, for those who think that it is not constructive to use the term "collapse": We have been collapsing for decades. So live in the moment and contemplate what you are seeing when you take the time to process the graphics at flightradar24.com. Zoom out and zoom in and marvel at the stupidity of our society. The rest is trivial.

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Election systems not working

First - there is no perfect election system that captures the significant concerns and views of a population.

Second- The single member districts are archaic and dramatically flawed. I will skip the details.

Third - A system similar to that currently used in Germany would be a dramatic improvement but doesn't have a chance in the US or UK. The German election system has 50% of the seats in the representative assembly determined by single member districts and the other 50% are backfilled by proportional representation. It could also be 60/40 and work. 

Finally- People like Bibles, Constitutions, etc as guides regardless of their inapplicabilty to reality. The world has confused most people with the death of god, the rise of science, and the explosion of population, and the whirl of rapid change in everything. Nature will prevail, it isn't in a hurry, but it is inevitable that a limited Earth will constrain madness. The historic Gaia hypothesis was always nonsense. Our time here is so limited and we are short term focused, so we just don't get it. 

A crisis is often the only way to precipitate significant change.

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Waterdog14
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Only tax payers can vote?

Injured on the job because of unsafe working conditions?  Permanently disabled?  YOU CAN'T VOTE!

Unable to find work because the economy has tanked?  Too bad - YOU CAN'T VOTE!

Senior citizen, retired, living on a pension below the poverty level.  Hey - YOU CAN'T VOTE!

Staying home to take care of an aging parent or a disabled child?  Stay-at-home parent?  YOU CAN'T VOTE!

In medical school or dental school or physical therapy school, spending time in an unpaid internship while learning a new profession?  Screw you - YOU CAN'T VOTE!

The idea of allowing only taxpayers to vote runs counter to a fundamental principal of democracy.  (Not that we have a democracy, but we can dream of one.)  One person, one vote.  Period.  

How about a poll tax?  It would accomplish basically the same thing.  Only wealthy people with the means to pay would be able to vote.  How high should we set the poll tax?  $500?  $1,000?  How about $1,000,000 and be done with it.  We'd get essentially the same political system we have now. 

Doug's picture
Doug
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Posts: 3186
democracy

I've long thought that democracy has one shining virtue.  That is, when things get so intolerably bad that everyone recognizes it we can throw the rascals out.  We give up that virtue at our peril.  During periods of time between those instances we more or less muddle along somewhere in the middle.  Imho, the upcoming election may be the most important election in my 70+ years on the planet.

We seem to be at one of those change moments now partially because of long term corriuption of the legislative branch and partially because the current POTUS is so intolerably corrupt, ignorant and incompetent that we are being driven ever more deeply into the swamp.  Under these circumstances the tired notion that the blue and red are somehow equally bad is preposterous.  The Congressional Republicans have hopelessly and cravenly given up any claim to ethics, morality and virtue to serve the whims of the above described POTUS.  The Democrats are not that compromised, their sins are more along the lines of lack of spine.

If, indeed, these midterm elections see a blue wave, we will probably see a lot of new Congresspeople who are qualitively different than those they replace.  Perhaps the most notable of those replacements will be many women.  I consider that a very good thing.  Men have not done so well in a long time.  I think we should consider this election a real opportunity to fundamentally change the direction of our government.  We have fundamental reasons to bring about some big changes, not least of which is to recognize the impending cumulative threats of climate change and other environmental disasters.  Unlike the probability of economic collapses, which happen periodically throughout history, failure to address our environmental issues could end life on the planet.  If we don't consider the futures of our children and grandchildren we fail in our responsibility to leave our planet liveable.

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richcabot
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Bribes and Blackmail

The Deep State uses bribery and blackmail to control enough of Congress that significant corrective legislation never gets a chance.  Most succumb to cash donations since our election system is incredibly expensive.  Our domestic spying apparatus is used against the rest to get the dirt required to keep the rest in line.

Bill Clinton used the domestic spying apparatus to get enough dirt on several Senators to prevent conviction on impeachment.  It was pretty well documented in pieces that Sibel Edmonds wrote several years back.  They're still on her web site.

Broadspectrum's picture
Broadspectrum
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Women Should Not Be Allowed To Vote, Ever

Hi Tech Guy,

My Subject Line is "Just Kidding" of course.  As you should know, women did not have the right to vote at the beginning of our Nation's history.  The constitution was ammended.  It was ammended again to give all 18 year olds the right to vote since they were being sent off to be killed in wars. 

It is fair because they live here and all of us are impacted by laws that are passed.  

You stated, "Most are terrible changes..."  Specifically which ones and how would they empower the government and more socialism? Do you not like fire and police departments as just 2 examples of Socialism?  Notte: I am not a supporter of ANY "ISMs".  I promote a better idea.

Peace for Real,                                                                                                                                                    Broadspectrum

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Mohammed Mast
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Posts: 193
Voting

I never ceased to be amused when conversation turns to politics and voting. There is this notion completely unsupported by empirical data that voting solves the human predicament. As a matter of fact it generally makes things worse. thinking that there is some meaningful difference between Republicans and Democrats is ludicrous.

The bottom line is there are no political solutions to the human condition. The myth of Amerikan democracy is just that it is a myth. The people who control the banks, corporations, media  military and intelligence organizations make the decisions. Any politician who remotely tries to rock the boat will end up marginalized, and or villified like Ron Paul or Jimmy Carter or worse will end up like JFK.

This country was founded by rich white guys for rich white guys and is run by rich white guys.

Mohammed Mast's picture
Mohammed Mast
Status: Silver Member (Offline)
Joined: May 17 2017
Posts: 193
Voting

I never ceased to be amused when conversation turns to politics and voting. There is this notion completely unsupported by empirical data that voting solves the human predicament. As a matter of fact it generally makes things worse. thinking that there is some meaningful difference between Republicans and Democrats is ludicrous.

The bottom line is there are no political solutions to the human condition. The myth of Amerikan democracy is just that it is a myth. The people who control the banks, corporations, media  military and intelligence organizations make the decisions. Any politician who remotely tries to rock the boat will end up marginalized, and or villified like Ron Paul or Jimmy Carter or worse will end up like JFK.

This country was founded by rich white guys for rich white guys and is run by rich white guys.

Doug's picture
Doug
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Posts: 3186
Voting

If you don't vote you forfeit your right to complain.

acesovereggs's picture
acesovereggs
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Posts: 13
Assumption

That assumes your vote is counted correctly.  A big assumption that Americans take on complete FAITH as there is no way to audit the counting of the votes (or if there is, any attempt is blocked by the people in charge).

acesovereggs's picture
acesovereggs
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Posts: 13
A simple solution

I have come up with a simple solution to the audit problem, at no additional expense to the taxpayers, and that avoids having to resort to handcounting paper ballots. 

Each paper ballot comes with a preprinted number and a stub with the same preprinted number, like a stack of invoices or something like that. 

After filling out the ballot you tear the stub off and keep it.  The ballot is fed into the machine which counts it, as well as takes a digital copy (they already make machines capable of this). 

The digital copies are uploaded so any citizen can access the images. 

Each individual voter is able to identify their own ballot based on the stub number, no personal information is revealed.  Citizens could (and would) take it upon themselves to verify any result that seemed the least bit fishy. 

Any critiques are welcome. 

Michael_Rudmin's picture
Michael_Rudmin
Status: Platinum Member (Offline)
Joined: Jun 25 2014
Posts: 879
If you don't vote you forfeit your right to complain

If you vote and you win, you don't have a right to complain.
If you vote and you lose, you don't have a right to complain.

Despot.

Time2help's picture
Time2help
Status: Diamond Member (Offline)
Joined: Jun 9 2011
Posts: 2854
Voting
Doug wrote:

If you don't vote you forfeit your right to complain.

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