Morone and His “Democratic Wish”….Hmmmm

Last week, in reading Morone’s The Democratic Wish for class, I was relatively neutral in my response to his work and suggestions.  I mean, after all, most writers in this particular vein, complete their works based on their opinions or relevant historical points.  I was fine with everything he had written, until I saw his suggestion regarding the increase in power to Congress….

“WHAT???” I thought.  “Is this man insane?”  “He obviously needs serious help.  How can I take him or anything he writes seriously?”  On page 355 of the revised edition, Morone states “My heretical proposition boils down to this:  American political leaders do not have enough power.  Strengthening them would help us face policy problems.  It would enhance our democracy.”  Oh, really?

While I am not a scholar and I do not possess the years of committed policy study and expertise of a Mr. Morone, I am a student, citizen, and more importantly, voter.  And, honestly, I do not agree with giving the United States Congress any more power than they currently possess.

This is the same Congress that can “reward” themselves with a pay raise at the drop of a hat, yet deny working class families the right to achieve a minimum wage.  The one and only governmental group that “works” on an average of two weeks per month and will turn right around and recess at a moment’s notice.  They have the best healthcare in the land and yet there are members of this seemingly celestial body that wants to deny the same privilege to the rest of us although WE pay for THEIRS!  Some of these same elected officials came from working class backgrounds and abject poverty, but somehow, they have forgotten what it is really like to stretch one day’s worth of food into one week.  Could this be because more than half of them are millionaires?  And I should be willing to give these jokers more power?  Really?

With all due respect, I totally and emphatically disagree with Mr. Morone.  While our democratic system may not work as it should and although I know many people will disagree with me because of some of my reasoning as mentioned in the previous paragraph, I simply do not think that giving this group more power is the answer.  Seriously, I cannot help but think of Plato’s Republic in all of this.

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5 Responses to Morone and His “Democratic Wish”….Hmmmm

  1. eyemhuman says:

    I completely agree with you. My initial reaction to the Morone reading was essentially that he was a raving lunatic. I think during class I was on the same position, I mean to have a wish to remove some of the checks and balances that are in place seems like complete idiocy.

    I will say that I do wish that Morone was not taken seriously by our current Executive Branch. Although Congress is not being very productive the current administration has not necessarily been working in the nation’s best interest in a whole. I mean you are president now, so stop caring about which political party is better and stop making decisions to please one side. Rather use the benefits of both sides and their policies and combine them to serve your country to the best of it’s ability, rather than ignoring the will of the people due to an ineffective Congress controlled by your party. Every day it seems that the people are losing more and more power and voice in their day to day livelihoods because of this administration’s will of complete power which can be seen through many different policy pushes, or the statements that state, in a nut shell, “if Congress won’t listen or do what I ask, then I’ll make it happen another way despite the other half of the country being ignored through my decisions.” (Note: This is not a direct quote, but rather a concerned citizen’s point of view, and in particular this citizen.)


    In all fairness, Morone does have a point despite his crazy antics. Wouldn’t it be nice for America if those who were in the President’s cabinet were elected directly by the people rather than being the individuals with special interests who donated millions to his campaign? Imagine that, someone who cares about policy because of the people they represent. Or if 9 people didn’t have the right to decide what was constitutional or not for the American people? I know Morone did not say anything in particular about the Supreme Court, but I would love to hear his thoughts on that.

    However, you could call me a hopeless political…the equivalent of a hopeless romantic for politics.

    • zoneofsubduction says:

      The problem with electing Secretaries of Defense, Treasury, Commerce, Energy, et al. is that the average American has proven themselves incompetent to judge candidates for the House of Representatives and the Senate, much less the proposal to elect candidates to more obscure offices of the Cabinet.

      The other issues are that the election of Cabinet officers only transfers the money flows from the Presidential campaigns to the media outlets who will directly benefit from party political advertising and second, what accountability to voters is there for an administration official? Will Defense Secretaries push weapons programs in populous States to engender voter support? Will the Homeland Security Secretaries order reductions in border enforcement to ease trade delays with Canada/Mexico and immigration from both nations? Will the Treasury Secretary use the IRS to punish their political opponents? Certainly there are allegations of some of the aforementioned activities in the Federal government and they are highly unethical, if evidence proves such.

      Popular democracy does not solve problems when the voters fail to act on malfeasance, misfeasance, nonfeasance, and other problems with their elected officials. A significant number of voters tend to re-elect the ineffective and reward incompetence.

  2. seancity971 says:

    I am in no way a romantic for politics, even though my main focus in college is political science. I 100% agree with you that morone over steps himself and tried a bit too hard to scare people of the consequences of not giving congress more power. True, some people may think that by congress having more power, other aspects of our government may be more balanced out, but to give a congress, that has taken advantage of its power for so long, more power would be terribly wrong. I do not ant to live in a world where those who givwe themselves raises and deny funding to the middle class have more power than already allowed.

  3. jamietraxler says:

    I identify myself as a classic liberal for the most part. and between this debate, I didn’t really like morone’s arguments. but…. his idea of giving congress more power didn’t scare me in the way maybe it should have? or maybe it shouldn’t have? I am interested to see if our current administration had elected congressional officials that comprised the presidential cabinet, they would have more on the line then just having to represent and please 51% of their districts in the primary elections. maybe the problem is that once you get into washington, you are separated from the “real world” you’re in a war zone fighting to stay on top of the people on the other side of the hill. power within that select group of people seems more important than power over the nation. it’s an interesting theory. I’m open to any idea of a successful government that can implement policy better than our current one.

  4. haleyschryver says:

    I definitely agree with you that Congress should not be given more power; I was shocked as well when I read this in the Morone piece. To think of giving Congress more power than they already have seems absurd. I do think Morone has some interesting ideas such as requiring the president’s cabinet to be members of Congress. I do also see his point in attempting to eliminate some of the bureaucracy in politics to make things run more efficiently, but I do not think increasing the power of Congress is the right way to accomplish that.

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