Americans are fond of labeling other countries as “first-world” or “third-world” countries without really understanding where the terms come from. The terms are a legacy of the Cold War, with “third-world” countries being the ones that were not aligned with either the Soviet Union or the United States. Overtime the term has evolved into a derogatory term for countries that a perceived by Americans as not meeting the standards Americans believe makes them better than the rest of the world. The Cold War was about ideology, but Americans tend to equate it as spreading democracy to oppressed peoples.

However, the unpleasant fact is that America democracy is non-existent.

At best it is broken and at worst it is corrupt.

The Iowa Caucus us a prime example of the dysfunction of American democracy.

On Monday night, the so-called revamped Iowa Caucus was supposed to deliver results transparently and efficiently. The rules had been updated because Bernie Sander’s had alleged that he was cheated in the previous caucus leading up to the 2016 elections.

Instead of efficient and timely results, the Iowa Caucus delivered – nothing. No results, but lots of intrigue.

When a “transparent” system bogs down due to “inconsistencies” it is likely the result of incompetence at best and at worst outright corruption. In totalitarian regimes, delayed election results usually signal that subterfuge is applied to deliver the results needed to keep certain factions in power.

What is worse is that the caucus process is archaic. It originated as far back as the original colonies. The biggest problem for the caucus process is that it allows peer-pressure to pressure voters. Since it is a “neighborhood” gathering where voters publicly state their vote, others can pressure other voters to come to their side. There is no secret ballot opportunity.

Other than Iowa, there are two other states that still use the caucus system. They are Colorado and Nevada. The rest of the states use primaries where voters cast direct votes to the candidates they support, without the peer pressure of having to publicly announce their selection.

The Iowa results started to trickle out late in the day yesterday. By 7:00 p.m. eastern time, the count was around 60% of the total. The software APP used to tabulate the results was blamed. The software was produced by a company known for supporting the progressive Democratic agenda leading some to question the results.

Why the results failed to be delivered will not be known for a while. But, the fact that the software produced by a company that seems tied to certain candidates will lead to many voters questioning the veracity of the Iowa results.

The failure of Iowa to deliver open and transparent results on a timely basis from elections results that are public shows that the system is broken. When the results come out, they will likely be masked in the stigma of corruption.

But it goes further than that. Donald Trump was elected on mathematical mambo jumbo ostensibly to equalize the ideologies of the country, but it creates an election where the outcome is based on gamesmanship instead of on the will of the people.

Hillary Clinton won the popular vote but lost the electoral college gimmick leaving the country divided under Donald Trump.

The argument for the electoral college is that states, like California, should not be choosing who governs the country. Instead, the electoral college is supposed to equalize the vote among the population. But a country’s leader should be based on the wants and needs of the population not on a mathematical equation.

The electoral college disfranchises voters like in Texas where each vote for Hillary Clinton was summarily dismissed as if it didn’t matter.

The United States has three branches of government to equalize the power of the government. Yet, it fears a president that is elected by the voters as a whole. Why?

Because Americans can’t trust their democracy to their fellow citizens.

That is why the electoral college was created and why it remains today.

Is not trusting your fellow citizen to vote properly the reason, or is the electoral college a gimmick to give the minority the opportunity to rule?

Clearly, American democracy is broken and it explains Donald Trump and the divided States of America.

Martin Paredes

Martín Paredes is a Mexican immigrant who built his business on the U.S.-Mexican border. As an immigrant, Martín brings the perspective of someone who sees México as a native through the experience...

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