"Again, absence of public awareness and subsequent pressure allows the status quo to remain intact."
Awareness and clearer public consciousness are certainly factors. However, the public certainly opposed the bailouts to the big banks and that hardly stopped that graft from occurring.
When posters push the idea that "if only the citizens knew" they seem to think that knowledge alone constitutes agency. And that suggests that our nation is still a functioning Democratic Republic with its seminal laws functional and in place.
In the post you responded to Mark insists that Americans are the world's most dangerous people.
That's a more clever way of blaming the citizens and conflating the average Joe or Jill with the actual soldiers inside the massive MIC.
Considering the FACT that the mass media lies (A majority of Fox News viewers still think Saddam Hussein was the perpetrator of 911)--with impunity; and considering the kind of wealth now held in few hands (as cited by Thomas Piketty), and factoring in the results of The Page and Gilens Study--which shows that the Public has virtually ZERO impact over policies that end up being pursued...
Why is it that this forum still has so many posters falling back upon or pushing a "Blame Citizens" meme?
Some of these same posters readily point out the graft, corruption, and systemic flaws IN the system. In spite of giving lip service to these very real encumbrances to Democratic representation, they still push that #1 meme.
It only deviates slightly from the mindset that robs the Black community of jobs and fair wages and then sets its agents into action--like human drift nets--prepared to hunt down any who rely upon an underground economy (betting, drugs, illegal trades) in order to survive. From this "evidence" the right wing pundits insist that there's lots of crime inside the Black Community.
Citizens robbed of agency, told lies often, given faux elections and lousy jobs are NOT the authors of today's illegal doctrines. Some do support these egregious policies, but others do not. Still others are dragged along because perhaps a family member secures income directly through one of the MIC's vast Hydra's tentacles.