USA

Politicians Don’t Make Our Lives Better. In Fact, They’re F*cking Us.

Left: Park Geun-Hye, the 18th President of Republic of Korea; Centre: Moon Jae-In, the 19th President of Republic of Korea; Right: Ahn Cheol-Soo, a two-time former presidential candidate. (Credit: Joong-Ang Daily)

Vote for the man who promises least; he’ll be the least disappointing.

— Bernard Baruch

There, I said it. Politicians don’t make our lives better, and they don’t care about people. In fact, they are f*cking us so bad. This article is to convey a rather simple message to readers: they don’t care about us, so we might as well sober up. Let’s be more pragmatic and selfish electorate, shall we? Long story short, politicians are lying to us.

Oh, what a shocker.

You’re nothing but delusional if you still believe in this grandiose idea that voting for your favorite politicians and political parties is somehow going to change the world. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not arguing that voting lacks significance. Votes decide which direction these politicians are going to screw us. Right or left, it does not really matter. The fact that they’ve been screwing us over and over does not change, and it is the only thing that actually matters.

Big question of the article: how are they f*cking us? Politicians convince us they’re not; they’re kissing us as they look deep into our eyes whispering sweet promises into our ears. Elections are a dark market by nature so they set the price, whatever price they want. When you show up at a voting booth for the election day, they are going to rip your eyes out as soon as the day is over. Once the political upheaval is over, voters won’t care because they get a sundae: civic consciousness.

Politicians are not going to change the world in your favour, because politics has become an industry long time ago. It has also created a bunch of sub-industries; lobbying (government relations if you’d prefer a fancier term) and polling just to name a few. It becomes crystal clear once you treat each politician as a company. To run a company, you’d need manpower. You need money. To help you better understand, think of Apple and Samsung. You want to buy a decent phone? You’ve got about two choices. You want to vote for someone who is able to realize your ideology with proven track records? You’ve got about two realistic choices: Democrats and Republicans.

Unlike Apple and Samsung, Democrats and Republicans are selling something way less tangible than a smartphone: an idea. The biggest problem with selling any idea is that no one can see an “idea”. It’s supposed to be a hard sell, yet somehow they have managed to keep doing it successfully. And this is where a critical fallacy kicks in. Ironically enough, no politician is responsible for their promises because of their supporters.

Although politicians often fail to deliver on their promises, their support groups may even go extra miles to defend their favorite politicians and argue politicians are not almighty. They blame it on the establishment, but have yet to realize that they’re rooting for the establishment. I don’t expect much from career politicians in the first place. You shouldn’t, either.

Why is it like this? Aren’t they supposed to serve us?

No curve ball here, let me give it to you straight. The answer is: no, not really.

“Cash rules everything around me, CREAM! Get the money, dollar dollar bill, y’all” — Wu-Tang Clan, 1993

It takes money, labour, and time to run any sort of political campaign. Do you fund them? No. A tiny bit, perhaps. Politicians say they thank you for your donation to their campaign and the amount doesn’t matter. I’d prefer Franklins over Grants any time, and I am certain politicians are thinking the same. Politicians accept campaign contributions from external stakeholders in exchange of their influences they are legally authorized to assert. For instance, corporations expect tax cuts, flexible labour regulations, and other favours in exchange of financial contribution. NGOs, think tanks, foundations, and all sorts of ‘societies’, you name it. Ordinary voters are not invited to fundraising events. During campaign periods, candidates hire political consultants, operatives, and lobbyists to have them come in and scoop up every single bit of support they can gather, hopefully quicker than their counterparts. If they lose big guns, they lose the election because it’s a bloody war. After they win elections, now it is time to pay their patrons back. They must return the favour if they want to keep their seats in the next election. This vicious cycle only holds up because there is not a single politician who wants to be a mere single term office holder. This is why Americans should consider themselves lucky, because they are at least allowed to see where the money flows.

In short: your opinion is not their priority. Your opinion matters very little in this twisted business because your favorite politicians are too busy hanging out with shot callers. Only reason why they pretend like they care about ordinary voters is because every vote weighs equally. That’s the power of democracy, and probably the only thing that scares them other than losing a PAC. It has been always like this, and it is not going to change any time soon. Are you feeling betrayed? Too bad, sounds like a personal issue. Don’t get your hopes too high, because politicians only have one thing in their minds and that’s presidency.

Politicians only want one thing.

Sounds gloomy, eh? Yet, there is a solution to all this mess. Vote them out. Do you ever open a window to circulate air in your house? If your answer is yes, do the same politically. Make them constantly compete and struggle. Red state, blue state, swing state, doesn’t matter. Let these bad politicians squirm. Your iPhone (or Samsung Galaxy) is a very by-product of competition. Companies don’t stop improving their products to win affection of customers, and why shouldn’t politicians? Monopoly and improvement don’t often stand shoulder to shoulder. Blind faith erodes democratic values. In my 2016 article published shortly after the 2016 US Presidential election, The Fall of Intellectual Elitism, I criticized the ‘elite’ media for their bias towards then-Republican presidential candidate, Donald Trump. I argued they basically handed him a victory on a silver platter. In this article, I choose to criticize the elite media again, but for different reasons.

I blame them because they have failed to take back the control. They’re have become too obedient to politicians and let them set the agenda, and spin it however they desire. It is undeniable that people have lost confidence, or losing confidence, in conventional elite media outlets after the 2016 election. For instance, CNN is the new ESPN for political junkies, and no wonder Trump is picking on them. They used to be reliable and professional. Not anymore. Biased reporting does nothing but crafts talking points for politicians. One less job to do for them.

US media bias ranks worst in the world (Source: Pew Research Center).

It is because they treat politics like it’s a damn sport. More viewers mean more advertising, which directs to more money, am I right? Journalism is not Brad Pitt’s Moneyball. Politics affects real lives. What you type on your laptop yields more influences than a gun. So, think and write more critically since that’s your role and responsibility. Don’t cut them a slack because you’re sleeping with them just to get a scoop.

Dear voters, if you want to make your life better, you should stop investing your faith in politicians. Instead, you should place it in yourself. Stand up for yourself because politicians are never going to make you earn more money. They are not going to make the world a better place. They are not some pretty faces, they are leviathans chasing after each ballot. They are necessary evils in disguise. They are only human.

Stop adoring your political idols. Start supporting their platforms.

Also, please stop caring about their lives. I don’t care how ‘good’ and ‘morally fit’ your favorite politicians are. I’d rather have a competent yet morally questionable politician representing my interests. His or her private life is none of my business. You want to hear an ugly truth? Part-time workers at a call centre cares more about your concerns than your politicians do.

Let me state the obvious again. Politicians are f*cking us. They don’t have answers to your issues. I don’t either. You do.

Questions? Please email the author here: nealwonmtl@outlook.com


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