I realize this may or may not be considered "political", but Gore Vidal was known as one of this country's greatest living intellectuals. Hoping to get more intelligent responses here than the normalcy of the GD thread. Vidal has plenty of comments on the US government and our political system:
"Well, they have been transformed, by design, by corporate America, aided by the media, which belongs to corporate America. They are no longer citizens. They are hardly voters. They are consumers, and they consume those things which are advertised on television. They are made to sound like happy consumers. Listen to TV advertising: This one says, "I had this terrible pain, but when I put on Kool-Aid, I found relief overnight. You must try it too." All we do is hear about little cures for little pains. Nothing important gets said. There used to be all those talk shows back in the '50s and '60s, when I was on television a great deal. People would talk about many important things, and you had some very good talkers. They're not allowed on now. Or they're set loose in the Fox Zoo, in which you have a number of people who pretend to be journalists but are really like animals. Each one has his own noise — there's the donkey who brays, there's the pig who squeals. Each one is a different animal in a zoo, making a characteristic noise. The result is chaos, which is what is intended. They don't want the people to know anything, and the people don't. "
"It certainly got bad around the '50s. Just as we became a global empire, the first thing I was struck by was that they stopped teaching geography in public schools. Now here we are a global power, and nobody knows where anything is."
"If we don't have class interests officially, then therefore we have no political parties. What is the Republican Party? Well, it used to be the party of the small-town businessman, generally in the Middle West, generally sort of out of the mainstream. Very conservative. It now represents nothing but the gas and oil business. They own it. And the people who go to Congress are simply bought. They are lawyers who are paid to represent Halliburton, big oil, big banking. So the very rich corporate America has a party for itself, the Republican Party. The Democrats don't have much of anything but a kind of wistful style. They just want everyone to be happy, and politically correct at all times. Do not hurt other people's feelings. They spend so much time on political correctness that they haven't thought of what to do politically about anything. Like say "no" to these preemptive wars, which are against not only the whole world's take on war and peace, but against United States history."
"By the time a man gets to be presidential material, he's been bought ten times over. "
"Now you have people in Washington who have no interest in the country at all. They're interested in their companies, their corporations grabbing Caspian oil."
"The corporate grip on opinion in the United States is one of the wonders of the Western world. No First World country has ever managed to eliminate so entirely from its media all objectivity - much less dissent."
"The genius of our ruling class is that it has kept a majority of the people from ever questioning the inequity of a system where most people drudge along, paying heavy taxes for which they get nothing in return."
RIP to a great and witty mind, Gore Vidal