Somewhere along the line, and not so very far down that line, it became obvious to me that many politicians were simply puppets for those who feign to be their supporters.
It’s a shame too, because most politicians run for office because they really do care about the issues of the day. They have that “fire in the belly” to gain office so they can right some real or perceived wrong.
The new politician is wined and dined, constantly flattered, and soon placed in compromising positions by “supporters” who profess to be friends. Once temptation wins them over, they continue to deny the fact that those who would seek to influence their actions are anything but friends.
Then comes the time to vote. Any false step by the elected official results in threats or worse yet, blackmail by those same people. Generally, blackmail comes in the form of pictures taken during some soiree or the exposure of some business relationship created for the benefit of the elected official. This is when the politician’s false illusion he or she can accomplish change evaporates.
Those who line up and vote the way they are told, serve for as long as they create no problems for either themselves or the puppet master(s). The rest leave risking being scandalized by their past activities. “Spending more time with the family” is the common reason given for stepping down from office.
Who are these puppet masters? Generally, they are business people whose pockets are lined by the votes cast by the official. Sometimes they are union leaders who want special consideration for the union when the official is voting on employee salary and benefit packages. It always comes down to money.
The practice is not with one political party. It is equal on both sides of the aisle. There is a democrat lobbyist and a republican lobbyist for each pocket lining cause. The bases are covered and the vote is virtually guaranteed.
Can this ever be changed? Yes, when it becomes more popular to do the right thing than the wrong thing. Freedom isn’t free, we have to stand up and watch, then participate in the elections, and vote for the “good guys.”