The Players

The opposite of freedom is control.
So who controls you?

In communist or facist or dictatorship, it is easy to tell who control you.
The problems in those societies and their causes are plain to see. But lets talk about it any a democratic context.

Freedom in a democracy

What preserves freedom in a democractic society? Is it democracy? No.
It is the constitution or a bill or rights of some kind.
It is the legal system that actually preserves our freedom, not democracy.
By democracy I mean the system where people vote for an elected leader.
As a matter of fact, in order to preserve freedom, democracy MUST BE CONSTRAINED by the the legal system.

The State of our Democracy

It is no secret that people are losing faith in democracy in many countries. In Canada and the United States, bare 50% of the eligible votes even vote. Then 50% of those actually side with the winning party. So normally only about 25% of the population actually voted for a leader. Yet often that leader thinks they have a 'mandate.'

How did it get this way?

It got this way because democracy stopped being a way for society to function fairly and collectively and became a way for groups to get access to tax dollars. If you don't belong to the right group, you don't benefit at all. So who are these groups? Well it depends on the government of the day. Often this is expressed in terms of 'complexes.'
For example there is the US military industrial complex. All the military equipment makers get excited when a war is about to take place.
The law and order complex gets excited when the government proposes new laws (banning drugs..) as it sends funds their way.

Corporate/Public sector influence

Often times, people are very quick to talk about 'corporate' influence in Countries.
But what they often fail to recognize is the public sector is just another corporation feeding at the public's expense.
The public sector is a government mandated monopoly on countless services with the ability to charge whatever they want due to tax dollars.
It is one reason why the money should always be put into the hands of individuals.
The government can operate non-profits and to a certain extent equalize money for things like health and education, but the money must always be kept in the hands of individuals to spend at the institutions they want. You're free to spend that money at the government non-profit or at another non-profit or at a private place.
This is the only way to prevent corporate lobbying from affecting democracy.

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