Home | About | Donate

We Have What It Takes To Meet The Crisis Of Our Democracy

We Have What It Takes To Meet The Crisis Of Our Democracy

Frances Moore Lappé, Adam Eichen

In 1999, Dee Hock, founder of Visa, quipped, “It’s far too late and things are far too bad for pessimism.” But 18 years later, pessimism can feel like the new realism.


If we are to resolve the crisis of our democracy, we can’t allow the Democrat party to hijack the movement. At our meetings and at our rallies, we must not allow Democrat politicians to bogart the microphone, but rather make them stand in respectful silence while We, the people, make our plans and give our testimony.


O.K. Now, given the actual system we need to fight we need at a minimum a parliamentary system, and a best a true system of equality such as socialism even if “Americans” are allergic to this term. Which brings me to my last point: Education. Given the twin crisis of ecological collapse and nuclear winter, time is rather short. So: first we place this system on hold as in moratorium–total, non-cooperation, then educate everyone in our community that there is a better way.

From another poster before:


1 Like

“And what about proof that those capacities can generate progress through elected government that’s accountable and inclusive?”

Elected government is the oligarchy’s poison pill.

If its not direct, its not democracy.

I agree that democracy is a superior form of government but millions of Americans prefer an authoritarian government. To have a democracy those of us who favor democracy have to out vote those who favor authoritarianism which is now being offered by Donald Trump who is backed by most of the Republican Party. The election in 2018 to some extent will be a referendum on democracy although many issues will be relevant. But essentially a vote for a Democrat will be a vote for democracy and a vote for a Republican will be a vote for autocracy. Our crisis is that a white nationalist movement has risen to challenge the democratic tradition of this country which has continued for more than 240 years. And the president is the focal point of this movement and Republican Party has gone along rather than challenging Trump and other white nationalists who are prominent in this movement which supports authoritarian rule. .

Encouragement’s great, but we ought to get on to how.

  • Both major party nominations were heavily manipulated and altered in 2016 (not by Russians).
  • Neither party chose a viable candidate
  • Neither party has an interest in reviewing its process
  • No current elected representatives held either party to account
  • Fraudsters in the Democratic Party have doubled down to prevent the choice of a viable candidate
  • The so-called “revolution” in the Democratic Party has endorsed the fraud
  • The Republicans are still Republicans (enough said?)

If one posits a populace aware of its problems and its solidarity across the demographic, of course it can insist on a democracy of some sort. At present, that awareness appears mostly lacking. The “new Democrats” have effectively distanced identity politics from class politics and reformed the party as a more purely corporatist and imperialist corporate partner.

Therefore, anything positive has to come from outside the current electoral system, at least if it is to come out of anything much like democratic process. I am all for keeping voting central to power if that can be done, but for now US third parties do not have enough clout to insist that votes be counted.

Unless enough people vote third party to create an undeniable presence or else there is a contingent within the Democratic party willing to vote corrupt party leaders out of office, what we vote in will bear little resemblance to democracy, good or sour.

The discussion then, ought to be how we accomplish this. I’d say 3rd party, concentrate on local elections, build, correct election processes, and then move on national elections–in that order, unless some special opportunity presents.

Otherwise, the remaining option would seem to be nonviolent direct action across a very wide variety of targets: alternate food, alternate finance, alternate education, exclusively alternate media, only locally grown and manufactured goods, divestiture from a wide range of craven business.


This is essay is a little flawed by its concentration on “political democracy” or what Marxists call “bourgeois democracy”

At one time along with “political democracy” there were calls by the likes of Debs and the IWW for what they called either industrial democracy or economic democracy. When combined “political and economic democracy” by early radical activists - it transformed into a call for social democracy

1 Like

Short answer: by embracing feminism.

The Constitution doesn’t guarantee happiness. It states as a matter of principle that we have the right to pursue it. We’re expected to understand that it’s not an absolute and unlimited right; as the old saw would have it, “Your right to swing your fist stops at my nose.”

1 Like

If you want to talk about moral relativism, you might start with the US gov’t’s chastising Cuba’s human rights record while supporting Saudi Arabia and Israel—strange bedfellows for sure—with money, weapons and its Security Council veto power.

Next to that, poor old Hugh Hefner is as harmful as Captain Kangaroo.


Really? I can’t walk the streets of my home town without bumping into families by the dozen. It’s just that now, families aren’t all composed of Ward, June, Wally and the Beav. Is that what’s got your skivvies in a twist?

1 Like

What a bunch of whistling in the dark. Platitudes to rally the spirit, but zero practical steps to take that have any hope at all of breaking the money’s hold on media, politics and government. Deal is, at this rate, the only thing that will get change is catastrophic failures that will get people desperate enough to put some skin in the game. Until we commit to taking to the streets and physically demanding our rights they will continue to slip away.

1 Like

So many complaints here about the article. Look at it this way - at least the writers can sell a book or two to their relatives or even some friends.