I wouldn’t want to convey the impression that I expected better, but I should say that I found the following amusing. I wrote to my representative Suzanne Bonamici, suggesting that non-domestic use of drones against U.S. citizens require a warrant from the Surveillance Court or some such similar body yet to be created. The computer writes me back thanking me for my concern about drones. If it had left it at that, I probably wouldn’t have minded, understanding that the representative’s staff simply has no time to determine what a constituent has said. But it went on to reassure me that the domestic use of drones is illegal, but in case I disapproved of that, it’s not Bonamici’s fault because she wasn’t in Congress when it was made so.
I know, I know. I’m just supposed to act like a trained seal and pick a party based on which one stimulates my limbic system the right way (my “values”) and if I wanted to actually influence my democracy in any substantive way I should run, not merely opine and vote. Treating voters who actually bother to involve themselves in a thoughtful way as if they were trained seals is useful though, as it encourages us to get out of the way so our betters can get on with running things.
This may actually be for the best. Plato has powerful arguments against democracy and in favor of rule by knowledgeable experts. However, he never satisfactorily addresses the question of how to persuade the many, who outnumber the few, to wear it. Well, I just thought of a way, but I don’t think I’ll write to Congress about it because I think they’ve already got it covered. And if it actually troubles me, our current system was perfected well before any particular representatives became such, so it would be unfair to blame them for it.
I also wrote to the Senate Intelligence Committee and got a nice note back explaining that I’m not from the right state for that. Noted.