Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Political Hucksterism

This little piece reflects a rather cynical view of Washington politics as they seem to exist today. It seems like everywhere you turn politicians are increasingly turning away from their responsibility to the public and selling out to lobbyists and special interests.
The symptoms of this malaise vary. Repressive copyright measures like the DMCA are being used increasingly to criminalize millions of American citizens. The Patriot Act is being used to (unconstitutionally) to imprison and spy on American citizens without warning or legal recourse. The NSA is spying on the American public (not for the first time). Congress fails to vote for Net Neutrality. Congress tries to close the analog loophole for copying (for personal use) copyrighted material. Millions of tax dollars are given to the phone companies as incentives to run fiber optic networks to American homes and no protest is made when they fail to live up to their responsibilities. Mickey Mouse is about to fall out of copyright and become public domain only to have copyright law extended so the Walt Disney company can continue to rake in millions of dollars a year at the expense of the American public (this is the same company that used public domain to make billions with Snow White, Cinderella, etc.). I could fill 50 blog entries with examples.
The fact is, politicians think they can get away with these abuses of their positions and power. I love America. I think we have one of the best countries in the world. It is a land of opportunity that people still flock to in droves. I love my country and that is exactly why I want it to continue being great. I want our leaders to be accountable. I want to wake up and find an America where more than 50% of the population votes for a president. I want us, as a people, to make this happen. The question is, will we?

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