The Economacracy Never Sleeps!
by
Commissioner Tommy Adkisson
October 6, 2007

For years I have been in search of a description that best fits what I have observed over the forty years during which I have been a student of or an elected official in government. So it occurred to me that our great democracy or republic, driven by big private money might well be called the "economacracy". It is in my opinion, a first cousin to a monarchy, not unlike that over which King George III presided over when the American Revolution began.

Allow me to be crystal clear: We have the finest government on the planet! But like our great founders and those who have followed, we must embrace continual improvement. The only time we can't improve is when we are six feet under.

Some time ago, I wrote an article about public financing of campaigns in an effort to craft a more perfect system because it doesn't exist! But I have been in search of a way in which "we the people" might gain a greater influence over our government "by, for and of the people". One thing is for sure, the more transparent our government, with or without public financing, the more citizens can check out who is financing our elected officials as they run for offices that are increasingly expensive.

Recently State Representative Joe Farias wrote the County inquiring why we had not placed our contributions and expenditures online for the public to view. I immediately called our Elections Administrator, Jackie Callanen, to inquire why we had not done such. She told me that indeed she was working on it and promised to conclude efforts to place the information online. I trust that online availability will be delivered directly!

This is just the kind of thing that forces the otherwise behinds-the-scene economacracy to share its vast powers with the citizens who supposedly own the government.

Take the presidential campaigns for an example: what are the candidates having to promise in order to raise such serious dollars? According to www.opensecrets.org (External Site), "After six months of fundraising, the candidates for president in 2008 have already raised more than $265 million. No presidential money chase has ever started so quickly. By some predictions, the eventual nominees will need to raise $500 million apiece to compete--a record sum."

All of this raises the question of how much longer we are going to allow the financial elite of the economacracy to rule us? It is, after all, this group that allows our elected officials to look us straight in the eye or simply duck out of sight and vote against a measure even when the vast majority opposes the official's particular vote! But in reality, they are simply and shrewdly trying to follow the rules of our electoral process as they now stand! Stay tuned for the proposed improvements.

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