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  1. #41
    Oberon
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    Quote Originally Posted by The_Liquid_Laser View Post
    Who are the politicians accountable to? The voters? The corporate lobbyists? Each other?
    I would say that, under this model, accountability exists in the political arena only inasmuch as A) there is someone who has the power to take away your power, and B) they might actually want to do so.

    In other words, yes, there is accountability to the voters, but that's easily assuaged by telling the voters what they want to hear. There's more compelling accountability to everyone to whom you might owe favors, or on whose good graces your fortunes depend. This list could include figures from business and industry, the judiciary, or the bureaucracy itself. It would also include those above you in the political chain of command through either government or party channels.

    For political appointees, there is no accountability to voters, but only to one's political patron(s). For career civil servants embedded in the bureaucracy, there isn't even that.

  2. #42
    Glowy Goopy Goodness The_Liquid_Laser's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by oberon View Post
    I would say that, under this model, accountability exists in the political arena only inasmuch as A) there is someone who has the power to take away your power, and B) they might actually want to do so.

    In other words, yes, there is accountability to the voters, but that's easily assuaged by telling the voters what they want to hear. There's more compelling accountability to everyone to whom you might owe favors, or on whose good graces your fortunes depend. This list could include figures from business and industry, the judiciary, or the bureaucracy itself. It would also include those above you in the political chain of command through either government or party channels.

    For political appointees, there is no accountability to voters, but only to one's political patron(s). For career civil servants embedded in the bureaucracy, there isn't even that.
    I would say that the office of the President actually is accountable to the voters. The proof for this is that Obama was elected instead of Hillary. Hillary was the clear choice of the "ruling class". On the other hand the President is the office that by far gets the most notice from voters. Congress people are probably more accountable to lobbyists and to each other. It's easy for their activities to go unnoticed by the majority of voters.

    And then of course there is your point about political appointees. They certainly are not accountable to voters.
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  3. #43
    Dreaming the life onemoretime's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by The_Liquid_Laser View Post
    I would say that the office of the President actually is accountable to the voters. The proof for this is that Obama was elected instead of Hillary. Hillary was the clear choice of the "ruling class".
    I'm not so sure about that. Both were fairly establishment candidates, especially compared to the Republican side (where everyone other than McCain and Romney were definitely "outsiders"). That's the biggest problem with the analysis in the article here - it's far too broad.

  4. #44
    Senior Member Survive & Stay Free's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Redbone View Post
    My dad always said that he could respect conservatives more because they weren't trying to really hide their agenda like the left.

    It does stun me when people really believe that either side has their best interest in mind.
    Realistically speaking at that level of government and in those circles there's all the usual trappings of a scene, culture and relative consensus, depending upon your country it can be less relative and more a matter of absolute consensus.

    Like it is in the UK, I'd argue there's greater difference in the US because the right wing is so popular and radical, in the UK neither the left, nor the right want to despoil the good thing they got going and politics, even public policy and spending priorities have become a kind of sport with each side seeing if they can trick the other into behaving more "true to type", more immoderate, than the spin doctors would like the public to realise.

    If I respect the right wing its not because they are more honest its because they are generally consistent, they dont talk tough and act tame. I dont like his books but in one of them Mike Moore wrote a satirical piece which back fired about conservatives being the family members you go to if you need someone beat up, very telling.

  5. #45
    Senior Member Survive & Stay Free's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by oberon View Post
    I would say that, under this model, accountability exists in the political arena only inasmuch as A) there is someone who has the power to take away your power, and B) they might actually want to do so.

    In other words, yes, there is accountability to the voters, but that's easily assuaged by telling the voters what they want to hear. There's more compelling accountability to everyone to whom you might owe favors, or on whose good graces your fortunes depend. This list could include figures from business and industry, the judiciary, or the bureaucracy itself. It would also include those above you in the political chain of command through either government or party channels.

    For political appointees, there is no accountability to voters, but only to one's political patron(s). For career civil servants embedded in the bureaucracy, there isn't even that.
    I think they are accountable to the voters, in a literal sense, although whoever pays the piper calls the tune so the lobbyists and special interests would be more important.

    Business beats labour and state employees hands down in special interest terms though, if only because they all go to the same churches, country clubs and resorts together.

    The UK could be different from the US but here there's such a consensus that there's almost an unspoken agreement that neither party will out perform their respective role in mock battle and do anything that radical as to despoile the whole game, threatening the off shore accounts and gravy train in the process. The whole format of debates in the house of commons is even borrowed from Etonian debating societies, the uproar is part of the sport of it all.

    So they are accountable to one another and I dont care what anyone says when a politician does blow the whistle like during the recent expenses and tax payer fraud scandal their cards are marked, popular with the public/voters or not. I think this is how any social class or caste behaves, its a matter for fact for good or ill.

  6. #46
    Senior Member eagleseven's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by oberon View Post
    I would say that, under this model, accountability exists in the political arena only inasmuch as A) there is someone who has the power to take away your power, and B) they might actually want to do so.

    In other words, yes, there is accountability to the voters, but that's easily assuaged by telling the voters what they want to hear. There's more compelling accountability to everyone to whom you might owe favors, or on whose good graces your fortunes depend. This list could include figures from business and industry, the judiciary, or the bureaucracy itself. It would also include those above you in the political chain of command through either government or party channels.

    For political appointees, there is no accountability to voters, but only to one's political patron(s). For career civil servants embedded in the bureaucracy, there isn't even that.
    Perhaps this is why only 23% of voters believe the US Government has the consent of the governed?

    Daily Presidential Tracking Poll - Rasmussen Reports

    It seems that the American people are increasingly estranged from our political class, despite our regular elections. Hmm...

  7. #47
    Order Now! pure_mercury's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Haphazard View Post
    So, the elite are the lower classes? Wait, what?

    The Midwestern accent has become correct because it's difficult to tell the origin of the broadcasters using it and because it has the most German influence of all the accents. If it was considered a "lower" accent, it's certainly been forced to prominence.

    I think the stereotypes you force on the Southern accent are too colored by your experience.
    Also, along the way, it came into vogue that the "American" accent necessitates pronouncing all letters and syllables in a word, and that happens most often in the Western Illinois/Eastern Nebraska/Southern Iowa area. That area still has its own issues, though, like the Mary-Marry-Merry merger, which sounds weird to many Americans if they notice it.
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  8. #48
    Senior Member eagleseven's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pure_mercury View Post
    Also, along the way, it came into vogue that the "American" accent necessitates pronouncing all letters and syllables in a word, and that happens most often in the Western Illinois/Eastern Nebraska/Southern Iowa area. That area still has its own issues, though, like the Mary-Marry-Merry merger, which sounds weird to many Americans if they notice it.
    Linguists tell me that the Midwestern accent is splitting, and I no longer have it.

    Inland Northern American English - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    The new "Inland North" (aka Great Lakes) accent merges classic Midwestern with Canadian and several local eccentricities.

  9. #49
    Order Now! pure_mercury's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by eagleseven View Post
    Linguists tell me that the Midwestern accent is splitting, and I no longer have it.

    Inland Northern American English - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    The new "Inland North" (aka Great Lakes) accent merges classic Midwestern with Canadian and several local eccentricities.
    Changes all the time. I wonder if East Coasters will become rhotic eventually? As of now, only the Delaware Valley and the Baltimore Metro area are.
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  10. #50
    As Long As It Takes.... Redbone's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pure_mercury View Post
    Changes all the time. I wonder if East Coasters will become rhotic eventually? As of now, only the Delaware Valley and the Baltimore Metro area are.
    Yes it will.
    On the PBS special, "Do You Speak American?", they stated that non-rhotic speakers are in the minority and disappearing. I'm a non-rhotic speaker but my kids and their cousins are rhotic speakers (probably get in from their pappy...he's from Queens).

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