I watch Thom everyday on FSTV with my DISH Network DVR and time shifting. I for one don't understand why democracy is not discussed along with the many other issues. I don't know, maybe it was my school teachers, or my Dad's political orientation as a union member that gave me the idea that America really is a democracy. I grew up with the idea that the American people actually did control the direction of politics, and that most Americans agreed with me, at least on that point, whatever their political view. But now that I am a senior citizen with a lifetime of observing politics as an always dedicated voter, I can say that I have gradually learned that most other Americans don't see democracy as a solution to our problems.
Why is that? Well, one person who does see democracy as vital to us as I do tried to enact a national initiative act when he was a U.S. Senator from Alaska (former Senator Mike Gravel - the man who exposed the Pentagon Papers which helped to end the Viet Nam war). The Congressional powers would not let Gravel's democracy initiative happen. But being the dedicated man that he is, he continued working on ideas to make national ballot initiatives real after leaving office. Over a decade was spent with help from many experts on democracy and the U.S Constitution to create the National Initiative for Democracy. Mike Gravel founded the Democracy Foundation and Philadelphia II to provide a means for the American people to enact the National Initiative directly - a power reserved in the 9th and 10th Amendments to the Constitution. A plan was implemented to begin the voting process and present the Initiative to the voters.
As a true believer in democracy, I was thrilled to discover the National Initiative for Democracy (NI4D) and immediately began supporting it with money and my vote! I've got to tell you, I was shocked at the lack of response when initial ballots were sent out. I could not believe these people did not jump at the chance for real democracy as I did. Additionally, I was astounded that the news media did not report this new initiative and discuss it in editorials. This was not the America I thought I lived in. Mike Gravel tried running for President to give the National Initiative exposure, but still no real reaction from the people.
Well, I find all of this very sad indeed. But it certainly has not decreased my enthusiasm for direct democracy in America! Americans have truly fallen asleep when it comes to their duties as citizens of a great country. There are signs of an awakening though today with the occupy movements, happenings in wisconson, and other things Thom has been keeping us up to date on. So I will continue to try to get attention for the National Initiative, as I have done in this post on my new website.
I believe very strongly that America without democracy is in a downward spiral that will destroy us. Democracy is vital to our future, and without the people's empowerment to enact laws we have no democracy. We are sinking too fast and may be lost if we don't do this. What do you think?