The latest developing political scandal involving a potential presidential candidate clearly reveals that the United States has lost its right to call itself a bastion of Democracy. As an outsider, I have witnessed the notion of “exceptionalism” from the United States. I continuously questioned how that notion has been allowed to perpetuate itself across the world relatively unchallenged. President Barack Obama has been chastised by political opponents for simply questioning if this notion is the root cause of discontent about US foreign policy in some national scenes.
From my perspective, it is the United States that invented commercialism driven by marketing. It has been my experience that marketing has been the nexus to cultural displacement across many societies. As the leader in marketing, the United States has been extremely successful in marketing its brand of Democracy across the world as the model to follow.
Because of the successful marketing, questioning the US Democracy model often times ends up being an argument about there being no better alternative. The underlining problem is that the United States has been allowed to mold what a Democracy should be like. From a US perspective, all other models of Democracy are deficient. Yet, if one were to take a critical look at the US Democracy model, the model’s flaws become readily apparent.
Take, for example, the latest controversy over Hillary Clinton’s use of a personal email account for government communication. The latest reports show that Clinton not only used a personal email account, outside of the purview of the citizens but also went so far as to manage her own personal email server.
As is common practice in politics, political operatives from all sides have hijacked the discussion taking it to areas that ignore the most basic problem. The issue being that any model of Democracy requires at its most basic governing principal that the citizens have a right to know what their government is doing.
Government cannot be held accountable when government operates in darkness.
The rhetoric around Hillary Clinton touches on this very basic requirement superficially while focusing on ancillary issues such as whether it was legal or whether other government officials operate the same way. These types of debates ignores the crux of the problem, instead focusing on issues that distract at best, and hides the inconvenient truth at worst.
The question that everyone, interested in a Democracy, should be asking is not whether Hillary Clinton violated the law, or whether Clinton is not the only politician keeping emails secret but rather the question should be why?
Why would any politician feel the need to manage their own email server instead of using those provided by the government, or rather the people being governed? Why did Hillary Clinton want to be in control of which public communications belong in the public realm and which do not?
This is the underlining question that citizens should be asking of Hillary Clinton.
Instead, what we are all witnessing are questions about whether it was legal, whether it was the standard or whether other politicians are doing this as well. These questions betray a simple inconvenient truth that the US public does not want the world to know.
The truth is that Hillary Clinton represents the culture of elitism that has been created in US politics. This culture represents a governing class that believes that they are endowed to govern the people of the United States, regardless of the ideal of a Democracy or the intent of the laws that are supposed to believe that transparency in government is the nexus to a true Democracy.
In essence, the United States has come back full circle to where it started from – a governing class that governs through divine intervention.