Today I want to say something that I think it is very possible you have thought, but have probably not actually HEARD before. But before I do, I feel I need to add a disclaimer, because as Chomsky said, you can be telling truth, but if folks haven't heard it before, they'll just think you're crazy.
Here's what I wonder if you've heard before (other than from the strange voices in your head):
The Capitalist class, the "elite," the Owners, are INDEED endeavoring to bring down the popular sovereignty of the government of the USofA. They are doing it two ways: 1) by constantly and aggressively amping up citizen discontent, through their lap-dog SCUM/press, meanwhile 2) undermining it from the inside by crippling its operations by partisan manipulations of Congress, and further exacerbating and exaggerating the comlaints. (Think Postal Service)
The Owners, Oners, and Oligarchs don't want only all the money, they consciously and malignantly desire to effect the demise of all but the empty forms of "popular, democratic self-government." That popular sovereignty bullshit got in their way. So in the 50s, they got organized, and started spending lots of money, and now they've just about finished the process of fatally undermining it by forcibly alienating the People from their allegiance to their formerly honored democratic principles.There. It's said.
Alienation! Everyday, more and more people have occasion to regard their troubled, sometimes desperate conditions, see problems that are only soluble at the scale of concerted social action, and throw up their hands in despair because their Govt isn't there for THEM!
I think there is plenty of evidence to support this view. Just think of how far (and how justifiably, it appears) you are from admiration for the workings of our government? Was NASA the last time? Were you privately disemployed by the recession and unable to regain your former status? Do you envy the workers for their jobs? Do you hate the IRS? Are you worried about DHS and "Homeland Security" and the baleful implications of those terms? Has your unemloyment insurance expired? Do you have a toothache and no money?
Or, take something like the Citizens United decision.
It's terribly destructive to the interests of individual citizens and small groups, and it is incredibly beneficial to the interests of the elite, corpoRat/Capitalist class, to bestow upon the most powerful and wealthiest individuals and groups the ability to "speak" politically in proportion to their power and wealth. That is what the CU decision did.
To overturn it WOULD be in the best interests of far and a way the vastly larger body of electors who do NOT have millions of dollars to drop into political races to influence the outcome. But to overturn a BAD judicial decision requires the efforts and agreement of a majority of legislators to undo the damage. However, unfortunately, at the moment, and for the foreseeable future, an even LARGER majority of legislators owe their positions--and it is a MIGHTY SA-WEEET life--to the corpoRat interests that any such legislation would weaken and whose power would be thereby reduced, and so would use their captive congresscritters to oppose and defeat.
So guess what?
You can send all the letters you want, you can e-mail yer Senator til you burn out your circuits, you can hand-deliver petitions signed in blood, and it won't make ANY difference. There will be NO constitutional amendment passed out of Congress to overturn Citizens United, or corpoRat personhood, either, for that matter--NOT in the life-time of anyone reading or hearing these words, anyway.
And in capsule version, that's the precis, as it were, of the whole CorpoRat strategy for the destruction of democratic self-government in general, in the USofA. It's a sort of 'neutron bomb' strategy; it's supposed to hollow out the structure, leaving the pieces in tact but removing the inhibitors to complete corpoRat hegemony.
I bet you thought, when you thought that, if you ever thought that, that you were crazy, dincha?
Well yer not.
Democratic popular sovereignty and economic capitalism have always been the most uncomfortable of bed-mates. The two are, in fact, structurally antithetical. Democracy is NO GOOD for the capitalist class. Capitalism implies and virtually always exhibits a hierarchical, top-down, monopolistic power arrangement. Power is seldom shared and never gladly. Capitalism is an intrinsically totalitarian (at a minimum, a highly authoritarian) system. Popular sovereignty requires the exact opposite of that.
So nothing about democracy is comfortable in a capitalist economy. Of course, the opposite is also true: Nothing about capitalism is actually friendly to democratic self-government: nothing about democracy is actually any good for capitalism--UNLESS they can capture the forms and gut all the "democracy" out. Which is what the Oligarchs have been up to since the '50s.
The Capitalist oligarchy has used the last 50 years of saturation media indoctrination to persuade the proles that it is no longer worth their time and energy to concern themselves with governance, and that it would be FAR better for them to turn the whole mess over to the Wise Businessmen in Boardrooms.
To effect this they spent countless millions--BILLIONS--of dollars to make the "Gummint" so corrupt that the people lose, are losing or have already completely lost belief in it. Remember Reagan's infamous nine words. He was the Kommandant of the ante-penultimate stage of the coup.
They made it so unresponsive that the people came to detest it; then, at the same time, they made it overbearing, so the people began to begin to fear it. Then make it impossible to change, to drive them into a depression of impotence.
It was a brilliant and monstrously effective plan, the outlines of which are still to be found today in the Powell memorandum. Google it.
The true genius of the plan as it unfolded was the development and application of a chillingly, monstrously effective psychological torture tool. It's called "learned helplessness." Which is slightly a misnomer, "Compelled" is closer to it, but I don't want to take much time about it now. Google it. It's the de facto/default method by which the US military psych officers extract intel from insurgent detainees in the camps.
And it is pretty obviously the preferred strategy of the toadies and sycophants of the Owners to gain "compliance" from the citizenry, through the endless streams and screams of CRISIS, and EMERGENCY, and MAYHEM permeating our own, domestic social firmament. If you 1) had noticed and 2) were looking for the source of the stench at the heart of our politics, beyond the still rotting corpse of Raygun, this is probably it.
They've been perfecting this particular phase of the operation for about 30 years. They've gotten too good at it to stop, now. It rolls along by its own inertia. Unstoppable. Because it works. So WELL!
If I see ya down to the beach, hippies, and we'll work it out, if a beer and a bong can be of any help...I don't think anything else is going to.