Thursday, February 19, 2015

PLUTOCRACY 101

Being elected to public office in the United States costs money; lot's of it.  The US Congress is the worse of the worse when it comes to representing the "people" being that the majority of those elected to congress are bought and paid for by a handful of wealthy individuals who in return are pandered to by these "selected" (not elected) representatives in what clearly defines the plutocracy we live in today.






Two new studies by political scientists offer compelling evidence that the rich use their wealth to control the political system and that the U.S. is a democratic republic in name only.

The new evidence adds credence to the Bartels-Gilens-Hacker view that money is corrupting American politics. By using a massive database of ideology that includes the super wealthy, Schaffner and Rhodes found that “members of Congress are much more responsive to the wealthy than to their poor constituents.” 

However, this difference is not equal between both parties; rather, Democrats are far more responsive to the poor than Republicans. (This is not surprising; other research supports this claim.) They find that both parties strongly favor the upper-middle class, those with $100,000 to $300,000 in wealth. But Republicans are not only more responsive to the rich, but particularly to rich donors. Schaffner and Rhodes argue that, “campaign donations, but not voter registration or participation in primary or general election, may help explain the disproportionate influence of the wealthy among Republican representatives.”