You may be surprised that we managed to elect a 14-year-old misogynist with no political experience to the highest office in the nation. Let me be the first to tell you that you shouldn’t be. While the modern republic is currently the best method for running a nation, the large amount of input that the public has on the running of the country is detrimental to its efficiency and leads to unfortunate outcomes, like the results of the most recent election.
Expecting the common person to be able to determine which candidate has the best economic or foreign policy is ridiculous. These are complex issues that people spend their entire lives studying, and yet at the end of the day it’s politicians, not specialists, who run our government and the public who decides which ones have the soundest policy. Our present system works as if it’s asking the average person the best way to build a rocket.
This past election has proven that the American people lack understanding of these issues, shown by their support of Trump, a candidate who plans to annul the Trans-Pacific Partnership, the North American Free Trade Agreement, the Iran Nuclear Deal and the Paris Climate Agreement. All of these are complex international treaties which even the most educated voters have little to no understanding of. Yet, because we chose to elect a man with no respect for the work of those before him, all of the effort put into these treaties will be wasted and America will lose out on international trade and diplomatic relations, all while failing to protect the environment.
Not only do people not know the best policies for our nation, they also lack the ability to compromise on the things they want out of the government. A prime example is our nation’s massive debt and continually growing deficit. Politicians refuse to cut spending and raise taxes because no voter wants fewer benefits or less money. Instead of making rational economic decisions, politicians just borrow the money needed to maintain both our low tax rates and numerous socialist institutions, bartering the future of our nation and our children for short-term benefits.
This is not the only example of the public being given too much power. On June 23, the British people were given a referendum on whether to leave the EU, a complex decision with many economic and social impacts. It was this decision that the British government entrusted to the public, and now, the pound has dropped from nearly $1.60 to about $1.30 according to Bloomberg markets. The decision was so horrendous that British Prime Minister David Cameron stepped down afterwards. Many of those who supported the Brexit, such as United Kingdom Independence Party Leader Nigel Farage, unsurprisingly support Trump and his brand of populist support.
This is not to say that the public should not be entrusted with political power. Our opinions on social issues are incredibly relevant. We just need to narrow the responsibilities of politicians. It is absurd that we have yet to change these duties outlined in the United States in 1791, a time when education was extremely limited and the phrase “Renaissance Man” applied to most educated people such as Benjamin Franklin. While this archaic system was the best option for the time, today most college graduates focus on mastering one subject. It is through such a system that we could feasibly create a political system with leadership positions in government focus solely on economics, foreign policy, or social policy. Doing so would create a system where politicians focus on a specialty area that would lead to a nation with more logically sound policies across the board.
And, finally, we need to stop pretending that someone without any political experience is fit for the highest office in the nation, because, to be frank, this presidential election was the biggest failure in the history of American democracy.
An edition of Gabe Gets Serious