The Big Ideas of 2009

The Rebirth of American Democracy

Obama's victory makes possible a radical change of direction. Our readers weigh in on where they think America is headed.

He will inherit one hell of a mess: a ruined economy, failing military efforts abroad, and a mounting environmental crisis. As the people of the world celebrate Obama’s historic victory, we’d like to hear from you. Does Obama’s election represent the rebirth of American democracy and will he be able to overcome the daunting challenges ahead? Comment below.

Credit: Obama/Lincoln Illustration: Ron English

186 comments on the article “The Rebirth of American Democracy”

Displaying 41 - 50 of 186

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stevec

The Rebirth of Democracy? You can't be serious. I am absolutely stunned by how many people turned away from reality and bought into this election as it was sold to us.

• Over 2 billion dollars went into the two corporate candidates. • Neither Obama nor McCain represented genuine opposition to the Bush doctrine. • Third party choices and voices were barely visible in the media, and intentionally excluded from the fraudulent debates. • We let corporate media control the entire context of the election, again. • We ignored obvious failures and corruption and gave in to the two-party illusion, again. • In Obama, we have voted for more war, more imperialism, more illegal spying, the Patriot Act, increased military funding, increased military size and more.

Reality in Bush's America was too much too bear. So we closed our eyes and wished upon a star. Then a salesmen appeared with a charisma that obscured his sponsors' logos and blinded us to the fine print on his forms. By uniting behind good looks, great speeches and massive billboards for Change™, we have given up on democracy and accepted corporate dominance.

The fact that we've elected an articulate African-American is fantastic, but it's only a small part of the picture. If electing Obama is our only response to the last 8 years of destruction and decay, we are still in enormous trouble.

Only a massive new movement of individual action, responsibility and vigilance will change this course. Will an Obama presidency inspire this, or will it finally allow Americans to go back to sleep?

stevec

The Rebirth of Democracy? You can't be serious. I am absolutely stunned by how many people turned away from reality and bought into this election as it was sold to us.

• Over 2 billion dollars went into the two corporate candidates. • Neither Obama nor McCain represented genuine opposition to the Bush doctrine. • Third party choices and voices were barely visible in the media, and intentionally excluded from the fraudulent debates. • We let corporate media control the entire context of the election, again. • We ignored obvious failures and corruption and gave in to the two-party illusion, again. • In Obama, we have voted for more war, more imperialism, more illegal spying, the Patriot Act, increased military funding, increased military size and more.

Reality in Bush's America was too much too bear. So we closed our eyes and wished upon a star. Then a salesmen appeared with a charisma that obscured his sponsors' logos and blinded us to the fine print on his forms. By uniting behind good looks, great speeches and massive billboards for Change™, we have given up on democracy and accepted corporate dominance.

The fact that we've elected an articulate African-American is fantastic, but it's only a small part of the picture. If electing Obama is our only response to the last 8 years of destruction and decay, we are still in enormous trouble.

Only a massive new movement of individual action, responsibility and vigilance will change this course. Will an Obama presidency inspire this, or will it finally allow Americans to go back to sleep?

HC

Will Obama change the United States? The world? Democracy? I've found myself over the past week feeling slightly guilty about not participating in the euphoria of Obama-mania. If I were American, my vote likely would have gone to him; however, I have a hard time believing that Obama represents any change other than that of the surface. Yes, it is an awe inspiring step in America's history to overcome the racial boundaries that have plagued them for years - this should be celebrated. Yes, it is equally amazing that Obama was able to increase awareness of the election and (arguably) move people to vote in historic numbers. He pays lip service to many important issues, but I fear he is constrained by party lines. We cannot fool ourselves into believing that Obama can do whatever he wants. He represents a party just as much as he represents a population, and that party is filled with corporate interests. Can we really hope that it his promises of ending the rule of corporate interest will come to fruition? Obama talks of getting out of Iraq - but at the same time speaks of increasing the American military presence in Afghanistan. Is this change? The one thing that this campaign and election has done is provide people with hope, and that is important. It has provided people with the realization that each of us, individually and collectively, have a voice. I only hope that these new found voices are not silent when he doesn't deliver on his promises.

HC

Will Obama change the United States? The world? Democracy? I've found myself over the past week feeling slightly guilty about not participating in the euphoria of Obama-mania. If I were American, my vote likely would have gone to him; however, I have a hard time believing that Obama represents any change other than that of the surface. Yes, it is an awe inspiring step in America's history to overcome the racial boundaries that have plagued them for years - this should be celebrated. Yes, it is equally amazing that Obama was able to increase awareness of the election and (arguably) move people to vote in historic numbers. He pays lip service to many important issues, but I fear he is constrained by party lines. We cannot fool ourselves into believing that Obama can do whatever he wants. He represents a party just as much as he represents a population, and that party is filled with corporate interests. Can we really hope that it his promises of ending the rule of corporate interest will come to fruition? Obama talks of getting out of Iraq - but at the same time speaks of increasing the American military presence in Afghanistan. Is this change? The one thing that this campaign and election has done is provide people with hope, and that is important. It has provided people with the realization that each of us, individually and collectively, have a voice. I only hope that these new found voices are not silent when he doesn't deliver on his promises.

Anonymous

Yep, and wasn't there a bit of Top Gun there too. Also like the Phoenix (Bird - Dead bird - rebirth angle as well). Dude how sad are we?

Anonymous

Yep, and wasn't there a bit of Top Gun there too. Also like the Phoenix (Bird - Dead bird - rebirth angle as well). Dude how sad are we?

Spookyn

As a Canadian I am cautiously optomistic. I find it a bit of a shame that we as Canadians have to rely on another country for economic survival. Canada has so much to offer and can be self sustaining but we are constantly bending over backwards to the bigger louder neighbor to the south. I hope that Obama can heal trade relations with Canada. I also hope that Obama can bring change internally in the States. They need to find a positive change in themselves first. Then once they become an example of positive change (example enviroment, economy and especially human rights) perhaps can preach to the rest of the world.

Spookyn

As a Canadian I am cautiously optomistic. I find it a bit of a shame that we as Canadians have to rely on another country for economic survival. Canada has so much to offer and can be self sustaining but we are constantly bending over backwards to the bigger louder neighbor to the south. I hope that Obama can heal trade relations with Canada. I also hope that Obama can bring change internally in the States. They need to find a positive change in themselves first. Then once they become an example of positive change (example enviroment, economy and especially human rights) perhaps can preach to the rest of the world.

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