American Democracy Still Works

The basic mechanics of American democracy, imperfect and defective though they may be, still function. Chronic defeatists and conspiracy theorists --

The basic mechanics of American democracy, imperfect and defective though they may be, still function. Chronic defeatists and conspiracy theorists -- well-intentioned though they may be -- need to re-evaluate their defeatism and conspiracy theories in light of this rather compelling evidence which undermines them (a refusal to re-evaluate one's beliefs in light of conflicting evidence is a defining attribute of the Bush movement that shouldn't be replicated).

Karl Rove isn't all-powerful; he is a rejected loser. Republicans don't possess the power to dictate the outcome of elections with secret Diebold software. They can't magically produce Osama bin Laden the day before the election. They don't have the power to snap their fingers and hypnotize zombified Americans by exploiting a New Jersey court ruling on civil unions, or a John Kerry comment, or moronic buzzphrases and slogans designed to hide the truth (Americans heard all about how Democrats would bring their "San Francisco values" and their love of The Terrorists to Washington, and that moved nobody). It simply isn't the case that we are doomed and destined to lose at the hands of all-powerful, evil forces.

All of the hurdles and problems that are unquestionably present and serious -- a dysfunctional and corrupt national media, apathy on the part of Americans, the potent use of propaganda by the Bush administration, voter suppression and election fraud tactics, gerrymandering and fundraising games -- can all be overcome. They just were.

Bush opponents haven't been losing because the deck is hopelessly stacked against them. They were losing because they hadn't figured out a way to convey to their fellow citizens just how radical and dangerous this political movement has become. Now they have, and as a result, Americans see this movement for what it is and have begun the process of smashing it.

That work is far from over, but it can be achieved -- unquestionably -- by those willing to fight for that result and who figure out how to perusade a majority of American of the rightness of their views. That's exactly how our democracy is supposed to work.


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