America is no longer a democracy — never mind the democratic republic envisioned by Founding Fathers.
Rather, it has taken a turn down elitist lane and become a country led by a small dominant class comprised of powerful members who exert total control over the general population — an oligarchy, said a new study jointly conducted by Princeton and Northwestern universities.
One finding in the study: The U.S. government now represents the rich and powerful, not the average citizen, United Press International reported.
In the study, “Testing Theories of American Politics: Elites, Interest Groups and Average Citizens,” researchers compared 1,800 different U.S. policies that were put in place by politicians between 1981 and 2002 to the type of policies preferred by the average and wealthy American, or special interest groups.
Researchers then concluded that U.S. policies are formed more by special interest groups than by politicians properly representing the will of the general people, including the lower-income class.
“The central point that emerges from our research is that economic elites and organized groups representing business interests have substantial independent impacts on U.S. government policy, while mass-based interest groups and average citizens have little or no independent influence,” the study found.
The study also found: “When a majority of citizens disagrees with economic elites and/or with organized interests, they generally lose.”
• Cheryl K. Chumley can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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