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In the video above, was comedian George Carlin right about the US being a cesspool of political corruption? You better bet he was. Your vote is meaningless, and an academic study shows how true this is.

It is pretty obvious, isn’t it? We didn’t need an academic study to tell us the rich are using the government to financially bleed the rest of us dry. They’ve used the government to redistribute trillions upon trillions of dollars from the 99 to themselves over the last forty years.

Our democracy has been hijacked. Both major political parties have been hijacked. The United States Supreme Court has been hijacked, bought off really. Click here for more on this issue.

This is a no-brainer. The United States has one of the most corrupt governments in the world, aided and abetted by one of the most corrupt corporate news systems in the world if you can call it news. (Click here for how the media lies to us.) The billionaires use their corporate news media to manufacture public opinion in favor of whatever they want, regardless of how it might hurt average citizens (See Trans-Pacific Partnership below). If they can’t manufacture consent, most of the time they still get what they want, with rare exceptions.

Despite the obvious, academic research was conducted on this issue by political scientists Martin Gilens of Princeton and Benjamin Page of Northwestern. The study has received lots of attention because the authors conclude that the US is a corrupt oligarchy where ordinary voters barely matter. Or as they put it, “economic elites and organized interest groups play a substantial part in affecting public policy, but the general public has little or no independent influence.”

The authors discovered that politicians, such as Wall Street Senator Ron Wyden, will be happy to fight in the halls of the US Congress for legislation that is desired by citizens of average means, but they “only get what they want if economic elites or interest groups also want it.”

You can see in the graph below that as the percent of average citizen’s who want something from government rises from 0 to 100 percent the odds of them getting it remains tiny.

On the other hand, the graph below shows that as the economic elites and organized interest groups that control both major political parties form ranks behind legislation they want, politicians happily respond to them.  Nobody knows this better than Wall Street’s Senators Wyden, Mitch McConnell, the entire Republican Party, and the majority of the Democratic Party politicians.

Sometimes, to avoid raising the political awareness of the masses, the oligarchs who control the US and many state and local governments will decide not to do something the rich want, such as when then President Obama decided he did not have the votes in the US house and senate to pass the Trans-Pacific Partnership, a massive trade treaty that would have redistributed trillions of dollars a year from the 99 to the 1 percent. Public resistance was too significant, but that was a rare defeat for the economic elite.

Why is income and wealth inequality so unequal? Political corruption is the answer. Why is this so? It is the golden rule in action: He who has the gold makes the rules. The US is not democracy except in illusion only. Instead, it is an oligarchy of the rich.

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This presidential election reminds me of what comedian George Carlin once said. “Politicians are only put there to give you the idea that you have freedom of choice. You don’t. You have no choice. You have owners. They own you.” I think he was talking about Wall Street CEOs, hedge fund managers, Big Oil executives, military contractors and a few others.

Anyway, below are the latest polls. It’s a tight race. It all may boil down to Florida, where the latest poll has Trump ahead. So we could have a situation in which Clinton wins a majority of votes nationwide, but Trump wins the electoral college.

General Election: Trump vs. Clinton vs. Johnson vs. Stein Bloomberg Clinton 44, Trump 41, Johnson 4, Stein 2 Clinton +3

General Election: Trump vs. Clinton vs. Johnson vs. Stein IBD/TIPP Tracking Clinton 41, Trump 43, Johnson 6, Stein 2 Trump +2

General Election: Trump vs. Clinton vs. Johnson vs. Stein CBS News Clinton 45, Trump 41, Johnson 5, Stein 2 Clinton +4

General Election: Trump vs. Clinton vs. Johnson vs. Stein FOX News Clinton 48, Trump 44, Johnson 3, Stein 2 Clinton +4

General Election: Trump vs. Clinton vs. Johnson vs. Stein ABC/Wash Post Tracking Clinton 47, Trump 43, Johnson 4, Stein 2 Clinton +4

General Election: Trump vs. Clinton vs. Johnson vs. Stein Rasmussen Reports Clinton 45, Trump 43, Johnson 4, Stein 2 Clinton +2

General Election: Trump vs. Clinton LA Times/USC Tracking Clinton 43, Trump 48 Trump +5

General Election: Trump vs. Clinton CBS News Clinton 47, Trump 43 Clinton +4

General Election: Trump vs. Clinton Bloomberg Clinton 46, Trump 43 Clinton +3

General Election: Trump vs. Clinton IBD/TIPP Tracking Clinton 43, Trump 42 Clinton +1

General Election: Trump vs. Clinton FOX News Clinton 48, Trump 44 Clinton +4

General Election: Trump vs. Clinton ABC/Wash Post Tracking Clinton 49, Trump 45 Clinton +4

General Election: Trump vs. Clinton NBC News/SM Clinton 51, Trump 44 Clinton +7

General Election: Trump vs. Clinton vs. Johnson vs. Stein NBC News/SM Clinton 47, Trump 41, Johnson 6, Stein 3 Clinton +6

General Election: Trump vs. Clinton Rasmussen Tie

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In 1988, when Bernie Sanders was the mayor of Burlington, Vermont, C-SPAN asked him what his ideal president would talk about. Sanders then sounded pretty much like he sounds now.

Bernie, then in his forties, spoke “about how Americans deserve a presidential candidate who would challenge the corrupt Washington establishment and take on the billionaires who run the political process. His response to the question sounded almost exactly like a Bernie Sanders stump speech in 2016:

“In our nation today we have an extreme disparity between the rich and the poor,” Sanders said. “Elections are bought and sold and controlled by people who have huge sums of money.”

“I would like to see somebody who speaks for the underdog, for people who don’t have decent healthcare benefits. Somebody who understands that in America today, 50 percent of the people don’t even vote anymore, and the vast majority of that 50 percent are poor people and working people who have given up on the system. So essentially, I would like to see a candidate who has the guts to have a vision that America could be a land for all people, not just a land controlled by the super-rich.”

Comedian George Carlin nailed it when he talked about the owners of this nation in the video below. Having a total net worth of less than half a million dollars, Bernie Sanders is not one of the owners of this nation. The other presidential candidates are the employees of the billionaires and the billion dollar corporations who bought the political process and the news media decades ago. They control the political and news markets, in other words. We working people don’t.

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