Representation is only unequal if it's not my side
By - midwestperspective
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Question: Doesn't the blue dot have fewer than 2 senators? Because all of California only has 2.
Yeah, that blue dot has about half a Senator.
Maybe a toe, at best. And not a big one!
I can get you a Senator by 3 o’clock this afternoon, with nail polish
I love Big Labowski references
those fucking amateurs...
I am the walrus?
Shut the fuck up, Donny.
I can get you a toe dude.
They get the left half of Diane Feinstein.
Not much left about her.
Ooooh, got em!
It’s even more mind boggling that they only have two senators when you consider California’s GDP is higher than all but 4 Countries in the world, California literally has a larger economy than India.
The most mind boggling thing to be is the California has such a huge GDP and a huge homelessness problem. Also, California has some of the most progressive(politically speaking) people but they have some of the most segregated cities in the US. It's like a riddle wrapped up in an enigma.
Rich people still have more power, and are mostly NIMBY's.
Also, california is still super liberal, not super left-wing, yet.
Aside from that, California is kind of weirdly non-radical, for how hard not-conservative it swings.
My pet theory is that it's too nice in california, so most people who grow up there don't appreciate the difference enough to become radicalized.
>california is still super liberal, not super left-wing, yet.
That's the thing. California is socially left but hugely economically right. The fact that people think that LGBT people deserve rights doesn't necessarily translate to being socialist. Equality is a centrist ideal, and equality under capitalism is center-right. The Democratic Party is a centrist party and most Dem reps and senators are center-right.
You say they're not super left wing *yet* like you think they'll start getting left wing soon, which I really doubt.
The regular voters are the ones that are starting to swing more left wing, each successive generation is already doing that generally speaking but it's becoming apparent that Millennials are more Center-Left than Gen X and Zoomers are more Left than Millennials.
The problem is getting the 18-25 year olds to freakin' vote. That's always been an issue and *that* probably won't change.
> some of the most progressive(politically speaking) people
So? It also has more conservatives than Texas. Just having some progressive people doesn't matter when it's the overall distribution that matters.
The answer is complicated. Part of the homelessness problem is because California has always had a large migrant worker population. The area known as Skid Row in Los Angeles has had a continuous homeless / transient population since the 1800s. It’s not like the issue just popped up in the past decade.
Another thing that contributes to the problem is that California has stronger laws and traditions regarding local control than many other states. Incorporated cities are given power to overrule state laws in some cases (ordinarily state laws preempt local laws) when the issue is a “municipal affair” rather than a “matter of statewide concern.” One thing this has led to is the rise of “contract cities” in California, where the cities provide no services of their own and contract services like policing back from the county. This allows them to assert local control without actually needing to bother to run a city. One result is that NIMBY-ism is absolutely rampant and statewide efforts to do things like reform zoning laws to allow denser housing construction have failed.
There are a number of other problems that have led to de-facto segregation. The laws of early California were *astonishingly* racist. Look up the case ***People v. Hall***. Other issues like arbitrary deportation of Spanish-speaking people happened until much later than you would think. More than a million Mexican-American citizens were deported in the 1930s. The 1987 movie *Born in East LA* was a comedy about a US citizen who was deported because he wasn’t carrying ID and he didn’t have anyone nearby who could vouch that he was a citizen. The premise was not at all far-fetched, even in the 80s.
“California is America before America is itself — the good, the bad, the ugly, it’s the whole shebang.” - Kevin de León (CA State Senator)
Hi, could you point me in the right direction for these segregated cities, please? As a non-American I'd like to learn more.
LA. It's not actually segregated, not by law or anything, but there are white and black and brown parts of the city.
Segregated by freeway
They're not legally segregated, but they are historically segregated via the residual effects of redlinint, like 80% of the southern us
It’s a result of decades of red-lining countrywide that forced black people (and most other POC) to live in specific neighborhoods that were less desirable than the white ones. They were also usually excluded from getting a mortgage so black people largely couldn’t buy homes, which contributes to a significant difference in net worth over time.
Even though that’s illegal now, we never really did anything to fix it, so to this day there are entire swaths of cities that are overwhelmingly black; in Los Angeles’ case, Compton would be an example.
It’s really hard to bring two areas into parity when one has been consistently and dramatically more developed and economically supported than the other. And when so little is being done to work out root causes of this kind of disparity, any development into historically redlined areas inevitably leads to gentrification. Unfortunately I just don’t think most cities are economically interested in actually fixing these kinds of historic gaps. It’s just not feasible for many.
Compton was a beautiful city and a very desirable place to buy homes in the 50’s. What actually happens is that as brown and black people began to move there, white people left in droves. Same can be said for parts of Long Beach and areas of Los Angeles.
idk what op is talking about look up the historical racism surrounding san francisco. They have made laws to keep black people out, as well as nyc had a racist city planner back in the day.
for another example thats more present just look up a census map of america and you will see how divided it can be, for example in nashville.
p.s. - if anyone disagrees with this lets talk im human and not right about everything and just am trying to help my fellow redditor see the big picture.
edit : i phrased that poorly, but im
leaving it. What i meant is, im not sure exactly the examples op is describing. people are intense on the internet lol
Yeah, the data is there, you just agreed with OP though.
I’m pretty sure all the people in the blue dot have two senators...they share them with a lot of people, but they still have 2.
Get out of here Mitch Hedberg
The vacuum store and the guitar store have the same kind of display in their front window to entice the vacuumist, but they don't have the same clientele as a guitar store. Nobody goes in a vacuum store just to run the new vacuums. "Hey, let me check out the new Hoover." "Let me see a hundred bucks!" -M.H.
All states only have two senators apiece. It’s the representatives that vary based on population.
But even the House is biased towards rural areas.
Shoutouts to California having ~200k more people per member of the house vs Wyoming and their 1 lowly (mandated) representative
This is the greater issue. Each state having 2 senators is intentional. Stopping the house at 438 and giving every state a rep is the bigger issue. It should be a purely population division and if that means some states have to share reps than so be it.
Yes, each state having 2 senators is intentional. But that doesn’t mean the intention is good, or even appropriate. We just accept that it’s right because we were taught that it’s right. But it gives more power to rural areas, by design. State lines are arbitrary. Why is California one state, but the Dakotas two?
If the topic is equal representation, shrugging off the Senate as “by design” seems like a big oversight.
Exactly. Just because it was done intentionally doesn't mean it is the right thing to do. Furthermore, the people writing the constitution didn't think this was some perfect document that created a perfect system of government. It was a compromise. Nobody was happy with the constitution as written, instead, they believed that it was better to accept the constitution as is than to risk the United States failing. At the time there was a fairly credible belief that if any state (or states) rejected the constitution the other states would fail without them. Thus it was necessary for large states to sacrifice representation in order to ensure the union survived. Now that pretty clearly isn't the case. If North Dakota or Rhode Island don't like the fact that they have less power because they have fewer people, good for them. Go make your own country. I guarantee they will be much worse off.
The number of states in the midwest is arbitrary through. Dakota Territory was split into two states Just to het extra senators.
What about American citizens living in the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico who have less representation in the senate than the people in the blue area? Surely they're entitled to the same self determinism s those in the red area?
US territories (about 3.5 million people) get no senators, no representatives (some send one that can't vote, but can serve on committees) and no vote for president. And any decision about their representation within the US - or even ability to leave the US - are entirely up to a Congress that they have no say in.
They're still colonies by any other name, look at the self-determination allowed to former European colonies and current territories. They're rarely treated with as much disregard and even sometimes open contempt, which is saying something.
But… occasionally our President will **YEET** them paper goods after a natural disaster; that counts for something, right? /s
That weren't no yeet. That was a limp wrist lob, at best. You want a yeet, go watch the WBush Shoe Thrower.
The most impressive part is the second shoe
Nah, the best part was Dubya's dodging skills. The look on his face still cracks me up.
His shit eating grin. Still horrific we started a war under false pretenses but if the simple human reaction doesn't crack you up then idk what to say.
Was good, but doesn't beat Reagan's balloon pop
Dude got off a second shoe, I forgot about that. Commitment.
The best shoe throwing I've ever seen. Even Bush himself clearly enjoyed it.
Can I just say, that was the first and only time I was ever impressed with Bush. Dude has some cat-like reflexes.
George bush clearly went to the Dodgeball school of dodging things. "If you can dodge a shoe you can dodge a ball"
Wait. Do they pay taxes though? Because if they do, it seems like it goes against the foundations of America...
Not direct federal income tax, but they do pay some federal taxes yes. And regardless, the people aren't even allowed the option of "more representation *and* more taxes" - they're given no recourse but politely asking Congress.
They even had a referendum in 2020 that asked a simple yes or no question to Puerto Rican statehood and 52.5% voted yes. Congress has elected to completely ignore the referendum so far.
Edit:it was 52.5% not 55%
It was actually about 52.5% yes, and that was a public opinion referendum, not a legally binding vote to have Puerto Rico petition for statehood. Congress won't act on it until the territorial government initiates the process, which will probably not happen anytime soon.
The concept of statehood is not as overwhelmingly popular with Puerto Ricans as reddit would lead you to believe.
And you notice pushing for independence is not a mainstream idea.
Its not a 100% raw deal. Just that there are plusses and minuses to both statehood and keeping the status quo
Washing DC does and their license plates rightfully bitch about it
Not only do we pay federal taxes here in DC, we pay the most federal taxes per capita
Yep! It sucks.
But you know what - Holmes-Norton has one of the most epic
fucking speeches on the house floor in my opinion.
[I will not yield, sir! The District of Columbia has spent two hundred and six years yielding!... I yield you no ground!](https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VV3k8nERUOQ)
You can say that about a lot of things about America. Remember 'all men are created equal', trotted out by slaveowners?
However Puerto Ricans are US citizens from birth so they can vote if they move to any state and don't have to do any kind of immigration. Still fucked up, but yeah.
If a Puerto Rican citizen joins the military can they vote by mail from the place they’re deployed just like other US citizens?
I'd think so they are full US citizens. Which I think is not true for all US territories. It's probably worth noting if you're born in PR and don't move to the states you don't pay federal income taxes.
American Samoans are "American Nationals", but not US citizens. They also have the highest per capita participation in the Military.
All territorial citizens are full citizens except for those from American Samoa.
They dont even get to chose a gobernor, the senate elects a 4year long dictator for them
No. Because according to republicans giving more people votes is cheating while taking away votes is fine.
That's because they've figured out that it's easier to not have the votes in the first place than to remove them once they've been cast.
I'm looking in the direction of Arizona while I'm typing this.
I'm am American Citizen living in the Netherlands and I get to vote for federal elections in my last state of residence. Let that sink in.
To be fair we can vote in federal elections (and weirdly have electoral college votes but no representatives?) But yeah, you're better represented than us
DC resident here. I want representation but I'd also settle for other states losing representation. Sorry Mississippi, your adult literacy rate is too low so no representation for you.
Due to disenfranchisement and a whole swath of other white supremacist tactics, the primary groups hurt by a policy like that would be the black people.
Not to mention literacy was historically used to deny black voters the right to vote in the past.
I wouldn't ever seriously advocate for loss of representation. Annexation of Arlington, though? Maybe
Hey now, no need for classism. Conservatives and liberals alike have been butchering public education, although to different degrees ofc. Not to mention the fact our education system doesn’t teach us shit about our government or economics or politics normally. It’s very easy for those in power to keep their constituents ignorant about what’s good for them.
Edit: to clarify Im not a “both sides” centerist Im a communist. Cant have a decent education while the profit motive is corrupting the curriculum imo
Conservatives are the ones who removed civics from schools and replaced it with, you know, lies about Jesus riding a dinosaur.
But that comment was pretty bad. You can't blame the oppressed people in Mississippi for being intentionally undereducated by the state
They stopped teaching civics after the protests against the Vietnam war. They didn't want students having another uprising because they knew their rights. A dumb populace is an easy one to rule.
Who isn't butchering public education then?
In the US? Really no one. Our education sucks balls, and I say that as a high school teacher.
I'd call it a joke, but jokes are usually funny
They of course assume that the people living in the red area knows what's good for the equivalent number of people in the blue dot. Or maybe they're just dumb... which I think is the more parsimonious conclusion.
Thank you for using the word parsimonious. Its been awhile since I've seen it.
They think the people in the red area are worth more as human beings because they do "real" jobs (farming, except that's not exactly true anymore), while the people in the blue dot do "useless" jobs (I guess designing your phone isn't a real job) or are welfare queens.
There is another big difference between the two regions that makes them think the red area humans are worth more...
The thing that irks me the most with these people is how they assume the cities are the welfare centers when it is literally cities that give the most tax revenue to states in most instances
So every state gets 2 senators(that blue dot should be the whole state of California since they share those senators with the rest of the state. House of Representatives are determined by population with about 700,000 in each district, and are divided the way you’re referring to. It’s why California and those island have the same amount of senators despite massive population differences but LA County alone has more house members than some states.
But the Senate goes after the house, which causes a huge misappropriation of power.
And the house is not based on equal proportions like it used to be.
Uncap the house and California gets way more representatives.
Not saying it’s a perfect or even good system, just explaining how it wouldn’t make sense if both those areas got the same amount of senators and why that map is disingenuous from the start by implying LA alone has two senators when senators represent entire states.
What you're saying is that the blue spot has even *less* representation than the OP is claiming.
anyone ever thought that a representative democracy would be nice? that or a feudal empire.
I had a conversation with a coworker about voting and the electoral college. I described how unequal it is and their disagreement came in a really strange form. For some reason they believe that it’s equal because my vote as a Minnesotan is equal to all other votes from Minnesotans and that’s equality.
I tried explaining how state level equality is meaningless because it’s not just the one state making the decision. In senators, yes, it’s equal. For the president? Fuck no it’s not equal! But they couldn’t see that low population states owned a ton of power in congress.
I just don’t know how to connect with these people and get them to understand.
tell him that maybe, just MAYBE, a president ought not be president if 50.1% of all americans vote for the other one. why do those <49% mean more than > 50%?
I think it’s pretty telling that in the last 3 decades, a Republican President has won the popular vote exactly once. Honestly, is senators were not counted towards how many electoral votes a state had, I’d probably have never lived under a Republican President.
Not only that but that one was the incumbent, W in 2004.
Right after starting the war on ter’r in response to claims of WMDs which…were to this day never found or substantiated.
In 2001 W held one of the highest approval rates ever recorded simply by virtue of being in office for 9/11
Republicans would be forced to change their politics in order to win elections. So you might have had a Republican president, but they would have beliefs more in line with what the majority of Americans want.
Imagine how nice of a world we could live in if republicans just never won federal elections. We could have affordable healthcare, housing, and higher education. We could eliminate homelessness, vastly reduce poverty and food insecurity. Women wouldn’t have to constantly worry about whether they would be forced to give birth against their will. Imagine how massive a burden could be lifted from middle class and lower americans if republicans just weren’t elected. It makes my blood boil thinking about how nice of a place to live america could be for everyone if it weren’t for these brainwashed fucking morons being allowed to vote. Fuck republicans. I understand they’re brainwashed, but I just can’t help but hate them for the incredible magnitude of misery they inflict on most people, including many of themselves
It's even worse than that. Just over a quarter of the eligible voters voted for Trump in 2016.
Which is why I always chuckle whenever someone says "half the country voted for Trump!" (In 2016). No, half the people that actually voted chose him. Half the country didn't even vote.
**Did not vote** has won every federal election for decades.
But see, we say this shit with an attitude of "har har, shitty Americans don't do their civic duty, they don't care", when there's a lot of fuckery going on to make sure that as few people as possible can vote at all.
Less than half*
Because of the EC (or what I call "affirmative action for bad ideas"), you could elect a president that wins only 23% of the popular vote.
"Because Of The Electoral College, The Presidency Could Be Won With Just 23 Percent Of The Vote : NPR" https://www.npr.org/2016/11/02/500112248/how-to-win-the-presidency-with-27-percent-of-the-popular-vote
Always felt EC was disincentive to voting. If your state is overwhelming one party or another why take the time to vote. As a Marylander I always vote but seems like a waste of time as I already know al EC votes are essentially already decided. Never understood why the EC votes weren’t proportional to the actual votes
At the very least let electors split based on the voting breakdown of the state. None of this “you get all the electors if you win most of the state”. I think only 2-3 states have this system currently
Very interesting, surprised I haven't seen it before.
Should really just Amend the constitution to require the winning candidate win the electoral college and popular vote. If the there is a mismatch, we have a runoff election with just those two candidates.
Or better yet, require an alternative voting method for all elections.
Bring the USA into the 21st century with ranked voting
This. As one of the geographically largest, most populated, most diverse countries on the planet, it is re-goddamned-diculous we only get two choices for political leadership.
Or have ranked voting take care of all that on the first vote
Because they live in the right states.
is that a pun or?
Because Republicans hate democracy. They are instead framing our society as filled with makers and takers. Makers = people who put in more taxes than they use. Takers = people who use more tax benefits than they put in. They say makers are the reason our country exists at all, and also of course there are less makers than takers. So, why should the takers get to decide what the makers do *simply because there's more of them?*
Using this, they say that the takers are actually oppressing the makers. AKA the minority is oppressed by the majority. AKA democracy should be thrown out because our country is being ruined because of it.
This is a line of reasoning that was carefully constructed by political scientists in the 80s and has been pushed ever since by Republican backers.
I think the best part of this is that in reality the 'blue' states are the makers and the 'red' states are the takers.
Willing to be that friend is the type of person to say "why didn't they teach us the important stuff in high school??" meanwhile they couldn't even be assed to learn that stuff.
I had a "libertarian" tell me the same thing
That’s funny. I usually hear this stuff from “libertarians” as well.
Yeah they're goofy as hell. There's a reason I put "libertarian" in quotes, and it's because they don't exist. They'll tell you they're a "libertarian" in one breath and then explain why they support a fascist president, or tell you why xyz group actually shouldn't have certain liberties.
They love using the lie of once being on the left when their politics show they were never on the left to begin with.
Yeah, I'm pretty sure there is a 0% that you can be a leftist and at one point in time go "oh this is bullshit, you know what seems way better? Rand Paul".
There is, it usually comes down to greed.
The term you're searching for is lolbertarian.
I just want one of them to explain to me what qualitative (and beneficial) difference there is between a government fulfilling the functions of government and private companies/citizens fulfilling those same functions. I see a ton of downside (lack of transparency, lack of recourse, etc) but nothing that makes people better off. I've never got past that one to ask how they intend to deal with externalities and other market failures.
Exactly. Why replace a representative government with authoritarian corporations you have no say in.
Many do understand and don’t care because changing it would cost them power.
Feudalism really stinks though
Really stinks, not kinda stinks
Feudalism is fine until your Lord hands you a sword and tells you to go to war because the King had a hissy fit.
Huh, sword...what kind of a Feudal charity are you running?
Peasants would have anything from an axe used for chopping wood to a long pointy stick. Swords would be for professional warriors and their hissy fit-throwing lords and kings.
"Feudal empire, please"
AnCaps are a beautiful experiment in having your cake and eating your cake and baking your cake and in something something free market your cake, too.
I've known one AnCap in my life, a coworker, and I don't know if this fits their ideals but it makes me chuckle.
AnCap grumbled for months about car insurance, refused to get it and said it's a huge fraud and he won't support it. Eventually one of our coworkers had his parking brake fail, so his truck rolled across the lot into AnCaps car, busting his bumper and cracking his headlight. Truck guy also didn't have insurance, and he asked AnCap if he could give him 100 bucks and the 16 warm beers he had in his truck, with some more beers later. AnCap said "Sure!" and didn't have a further complaint about the whole ordeal.
At least he was honest about his position lol
AnCap sounds like we'll enter the space age as a few global megacorporations with no authorities to challenge them. Coca Cola Interstellar, Amazon Synergistics, that kind of thing.
My beef with the AnCaps, is that those corps will police internally and create systems of governance that will align with historically Capitalist norms of Oligarchy.
See, Facebook creating it's own Supreme Court last year
I am so tired of hearing this argument against national elections. You have state elections for a reason. That blue dot is not trying to elect your state governor or local representative, that “blue dot” is trying to have equal say on the national scale based upon population size.
The argument is awful. So apparently because people live closer together they don’t deserve equal representation? How does anyone believe that just because somebody has to travel 30 miles to see any other people that person then has more representation than someone who lives in a building with hundreds of people?
It’s completely illogical, just like every conservative argument.
Other countries already take this into account, it's called Proportional Representation and there are various forms of it.
I live in one of those red squares. And I can promise you, I’d trust anybody in that blue dot to help my state significantly more than the hard boiled egg with teeth and a death fetish that currently “runs” our state.
Not sure I follow, doesn’t the entire state of California have two senators? Or are we talking state senators perhaps
I think it’s showing areas of equal population having a different proportion of federal representation.
I mean, it is correct though. They have exactly two senators representing them. Those same senators just also represent the rest of California.
thing is, the point could've been exemplified if they showed that california as a whole has 3 times the population of the red area, yet only has 2 senators to the reds 14
The OP image is a far more visual representation. Just seeing the numbers isn't as contrasting and probably wouldn't get the point across as well to most people.
Think of it this way. That blue dot is LA county. That population is 10.4 million, so (without actually looking it up) that’s the population of the red area.
In the red area, each senator is acting on behalf of 745K people. In the blue area, each Senator is acting on behalf of 5 million people. Actually, it’s worse than that—in California, each senator is acting on behalf of 19.75 million people.
How can two people have equal power when one is expected to accurately represent the will of a group that’s >20X greater than the other?
Tbh the blue dot probably does know better than the red, judging by the number of fucking self-destructive morons I have to suffer in Republican Jesusland.
TBH statistically the people in the blue dot are mostly supporting the people in the red swath financially. Red states are the biggest welfare queens in the country and the blue states pay for it.
Kansas literally stopped collecting income taxes asserting that it'd stimulate the economy and become a positive change for the state. They quickly went bankrupt, siphoned off money from non-defunct states and continued on as if nothing had happened. Then the people get angry about those liberals out in California and New York wanting to control our state when those liberals are the ones paying for "your state" to exist and want to stop throwing money into the corrupt armpits of the country to be wasted on confederate statues.
At the height of the debt that California found itself in after the Eron bullshit, it still managed to put $7 million more into the federal funds over what it took. After the $20 billion was paid off, its contributions amount to something around $680 billion.
Conservatism is fucking cancer
True, but more literally capitalism is. "Growth for the sake of growth is the ideology of a cancer cell"
Agreed 100%. Conservatism feeds capitalism and wants to protect it as much as possible (so does Neoliberalism but that’s another argument)
So Conservatism in this analogy is like...cigarettes? Sugar? Whatever feeds cancer?
The people in the blue dot have a much, much higher GDP-per capita and pay way more taxes!
That makes them more valuable than the resource-extracting, government handout-dependent GQP losers.
I would say the more salient aspect is that the people in the blue areas are much better educated and have a whole lot more exposure to a range of viewpoints and experiences other than their own that make them far more equipped to make good choices at the voting booth for everyone (including the red state voters) than the red state voters would.
We should stop judging people on their economic value. It's a shitty thing to boil a human life down to their contribution to GDP. That kind if dehumanizing is a contributing factor in our current terrible state of affairs.
I’m cool with that, but then conservatives need to get over this fiction that they spew that red states are subsidizing blue states when it’s entirely the opposite.
tbh, I'm not that interested in doing it, but the people living in the red areas LOVE to wax poetic about welfare queens and takers, and turn around and complain about their SSDI payments in the same breath.
I've just started to literally repeat whatever they say with the nouns reversed. Seems to work as the conversations end a lot quicker.
Ordinarily I'd agree but seeing as the people in the red swath often whine about takers and welfare queens I say fuck them.
Red states are the original welfare queens.
Them, and corporations.
I think they're being rhetorical because that's what the far-right claims of blue states (even though it's not at all true).
For sure. The amount of money you make should have zero impact on your worth as a person. Any moral person should agree.
However, while I disagree with what I'm about to say, if there were to be any inequity with voting and representation, your wage/taxes paid would make sense to base it on, as you are voting for people who say how your money is spent. That makes a lot more sense than getting more voting power due to the amount of land. But as I said, that would an awful system.
It’s a funny thing to boil them down to because many GQP act like being rich makes you worth more, so using their own logic back at them.
Dont conflait the teachings of Jesus Christ with the morons who follow Supply Side Jesus. One is the a teacher for Mr. Rogers, and the other would have prevented Mr. Rogers from going on air.
Basically all of America's economic and cultural output comes from deep blue cities, so yeah, I'm with you.
I find people in cities seem to be more liberal which means they tend to be more caring of others. I have never heard anyone in cities try to vilify those who live in the country. I can't same the same for the reverse.
God damn can I relate. Surrounded by retards 24/7
neither do the red ones if you look at their voting history lmao
The electoral college is a system that very efficiently allows the wealthy, for who borders are more like suggestions than actual limitations, the power to separate political power from the poor. The wealthy can spend millions, or even billions (a trivial amount to them whose wealth must be counted in the trillions) to influence politics in key states, and effectively prevent the poor from ever having a say in government.
This isn't even a new phenomenon. I [remember hearing](https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T6a87L_f7js) about [the flatline of democracy](https://www.vox.com/2014/4/18/5624310/martin-gilens-testing-theories-of-american-politics-explained) years ago.
We aren't a democracy. We haven't been one for years, if ever. We have been a corporate oligarchy, a plutocracy of the elite with serfs and servants in tow.
Imagine seeing that data and thinking bLuE pEoPlE oPpReSsInG rEd PeOpLe, BlUe PeOpLe BaD, rEd PeOpLe GoOd, UnGa BuNgA, or whatever illiterate dipshit “thinking” is going on there, because I sure as fuck can’t...
To be fair, that's kind of the point of the senate. Congress is meant to be the population-proportionate part of government, the senate is meant to be a counterbalance to that so that larger states don't band together to bully smaller states.
Unfortunately, this has, for the most part, failed, and the smaller states instead band together to bully the larger states.
EDIT: Ok so apparently the senate is a part of congress and what i was talking about is the house, I'm not actually American and that naming confuses the hell out of me
Part of the issue is the fact that the House is artificially limited to 435 members. This means that the proportionality of House Reps doesn't match up to the proportionality of state populations. If we implemented something like the [Wyoming Rule](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wyoming_Rule) then I'd have less grief with the Senate.
Proportional representation also works as well
The entire original constitution is a document founded on compromise, not some ideal of what a federal state should be. The idea that the founders were a group of enlightened statesmen comes from the Federalist Papers, which was Federalist propaganda to rally public support for the constitution. Behind closed doors the founders were bickering over the details largely based on their own self interest and the interest of the states they were representing. The Senate was not for smaller states in general, but for the smaller states existing at the time, like Rhode Island, who were holdouts on signing the document unless they got a good deal for themselves. It shouldn’t be a surprise that this system is so easily exploited today, because the people behind it weren’t thinking very far ahead.
The Civil War was a good example (and warning) of how this system can easily break down as pro-slavery states fought over how many pro-slavery senators they’d have representing their interests. As soon as they began to lose that representation with the breakdown of the Missouri Compromise, and their slave economy was threatened, they rebelled.
The Senate as it currently exists is a disaster, and today we’re seeing a similar fight as Democrats push to recognize DC and Puerto Rico as states simply for a chance to bolster their presence in the Senate against an increasingly obstructionist and regressive opposition.
>It shouldn’t be a surprise that this system is so easily exploited
today, because the people behind it weren’t thinking very far ahead.
>The Civil War was a good example (and warning) of how this system can
easily break down as pro-slavery states fought over how many pro-slavery
senators they’d have representing their interests. As soon as they
began to lose that representation with the breakdown of the Missouri
Compromise, and their slave economy was threatened, they rebelled.
This is absolutely true, and it frustrates me to no end that some - a *lot -* of people hold up the Constitution as some kind of holy document that was the best system that could have and ever will be designed. It's sickening, honestly.
The Constitution should've been rewritten after the Civil War. Then again, Southern society should've been systematically dismantled and rebuilt, but we didn't do that, either.
>The entire original constitution is a document founded on compromise, not some ideal of what a federal state should be.
I feel that if the majority of Americans understood this, rather self-evident, fact, the US would be in such a better place.
> Congress is meant to be the population-proportionate part of government
In 2012, Republicans won a +33 majority of seats in the House with 1.5 million FEWER votes than Democrats. In 2020, Democrats had +9 seats with 5 million more voters.
The Founders couldn't have anticipated one state would have 70 times the population of another. The difference between large and small states wasn't as big back then.
They also couldn't have anticipated the rise of parties, and the unconstitutional filibuster, would combine to utterly break the senate.
Also, fuck them! They were slave-owning 1%ers who got some things right, and got a lot of things wrong. Senators weren't originally elected, either, but we fixed that 100 years ago.
> They also couldn't have anticipated the rise of parties
They absolutely could have, and did. Some, like Washington, naively believed they could just say "parties are bad" and that people would agree and no one would form political alliances based on shared goals, others, like Adams and Jefferson, immediately started forming parties, recognizing that it's just common sense in a representative democracy.
To be fair, they did see the problem of disproportionate representation in the house, which is why the first amendment was about how to increase the size of the house as population increased. It's the only 1 of the original 12 bill of rights from the first congress in 1789 to not be ratafied
That’s what the Senate was designed for, yes. The issue is that the Senate is undemocratic and therefore illegitimate.
One thing I like about this example of /r/selfawarewolves is that it removes all the nuance around disproportional representation like we see in discussions about the US House. Here, the hypocrisy is far more blatant.
Every single aspect of the federal government is explicitly designed to give conservatives extra representation. The Electoral College, gerrymandering in the House, and the anti-majoritarian nature of the Senate all make the right look approximately as popular as the left.
But, of course, they aren't. And that's where all this butthurt over "cancel culture" comes from. In the court of public opinion, conservatives have no equivalent way to distort popular will in their favor. So they're forced to confront their own cultural unpopularity, and they don't like it
It was not “designed” that way. Small states were not known for being more conservative. If anything, they may have been more liberal, as tiny Rhode Island was anti-slavery, vs. large Virginia or the Carolinas.
Yup, as much as I think the electoral college is stupid and that the House should have more than 435 members to better reflect populations, the rules were made when the US looked extremely different and we would have to go into a lot of detail for see who it was even biased towards back in the old days, if anyone.
Wise words, /u/Raccoon_Full_of_Cum. Wise words indeed.
People should vote, not land.
As someone who lives in the red area, I can agree with the comment in principle that I wouldn't trust the blue area to know what's best for people here. But that's kinda missing the point. The whole issue is that the red area has a disproportionate ability to control people in the blue, not the other way around. Just as I wouldn't trust them to know what's best for me, why would me and the people around me be assumed to have a greater ability to understand their problems? We don't have a greater right to self-determination and political influence than people in the blue
This argument can easily be turned around. The people in the red area won't know what's good for the people on the blue area. Why should they have more say in what's good for everyone?
The great irony in American politics is that the people in blue states want to raise *their own* taxes to give people in Red states healthcare, and the people in those red states are just like ‘no fucking way’
The argument that big city people don’t know what’s best for rural empty spacers has always been a wholesale idiotic argument. It can immediately be turned around on them, since it flies both ways if you keep your logic consistent. Yes, I know that cons logic is believe, say, and/or do whatever benefits them in the present, but entertain me a bit please.
Additionally, if there was a group of people who *would* know what’s best for a advanced society with cutting edge technology and huge wealth that has to compete on a global stage with other countries, it absolutely would not be rural people. It would be the city folk who produce 70% of our GDP with only 20% of the land area. People who build and manage massive metropolises are orders of magnitude more qualified to lead the nation than people who manage farms and failing small businesses in one stop light towns.
This American idea that proud ignorance is on par with knowledge and expertise is just so damn damaging to our nation. I’m so disappointed in republicans and am now expecting more violence from them as they have to either fall delete down their qult rabbit hole or admit being wrong and causing so much damage.
Not American. Wasn't that the point of the Senate though?