To the Editor:
A national direct democracy is within our grasp in this glorious age of technology, and it would require no laws and no constitutional amendments. It would require nothing but the diligent work of a few generous patriots. At last our legislators would focus on writing laws that serve American citizens, instead of writing laws that serve American corporations. At last statistics would be available on the differences between Democrats and Republicans. And at last the state and national legislators of America would truly feel the urgent need to improve our education systems.
I hereby call for some heroic patrons of democracy to immediately develop a secure, accurate, convenient, inexpensive and speedy national polling system, and an accurate, secure, convenient, inexpensive and speedy system of registering every U.S. citizen who may legally register to vote. With these systems, a poll could be taken on every citizen’s yea or nay vote for all matters facing state and federal legislatures. This poll need not bear any legal weight. With enough participation per district, the legislature’s role in passing the bills that they’ve written would naturally become a vestigial ceremony like the Electoral College.
Any citizen capable of knowing which candidates will support their favorite laws must necessarily also be capable of knowing which laws they want passed. If American citizens are so incompetent that they have no opinions about pending legislation, then perhaps they were not competent enough to elect today’s politicians, who will no doubt oppose this fair and reasonable proposition.
Such a system could be built within a year, and direct democratic polls would begin quickly. When independent domestic and foreign observers declare these polls to be legitimate, and when as many citizens participate in them as participate in legal elections, what representatives or senators would dare to contradict their constituency? The role of the legislator shall return to that of a leader and servant of the common citizen, and cease to be the valet of American business.
Feb. 12, 2006