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Declining Democracy, Act Now

It is a melancholy object to those who walk through this great town or travel in this great country see the contentious nature of politics today. Elections for members of the House of Representatives occur at 2-year intervals! It is any wonder the extent of the disunity sowed by these frequent elections? Let us abolish the pernicious popular practice of electing these congressmen and women.

Towards this end, I propose that we pass a constitutional amendment. Nay that procedure is too burdensome and might be defeated. Let us unilaterally mandate that new Representatives be chosen by seated members of the House, rather than voters. This would put an end to the divisive elections and allow the House to get on with the business of good government. Surely we can trust House members to choose their successors and colleagues with wisdom. It is not a matter of taking citizens out of the political process, merely of expressing more fully that which is good for them. Unfortunately when people insist on making their diverse opinions known by words, advertisements, websites, and articles, citizens simply cannot understand what is in their best interests or the interests of this country.

€œI profess, in the sincerity of my heart, that I have not the least personal interest in endeavoring to promote this necessary work, having no other motive than the public good of my country. €

Can I count on your support for this modest proposal? I thought not.

First of all a thank you to the late Mr. Jonathan Swift for the first and last lines of the preceding proposal. To be clear, my modest proposal for the changing the selection of Representatives from election to appointment was made in jest. Indeed how silly and immodest was this proposal.

Yet I submit that this almost precisely mirrors the proposal, here at Dartmouth, to outweigh the number of elected trustee with those appointed by the Board, in other words to cut down the influence of alumni input, democracy. When viewed in a different context, we can see just how foolish and destructive (to say nothing of potentially illegal) this plot really is.

Please do scrutinize the plot to do this at Dartmouth.

Then consider whether you want to Save Dartmouth and €œHelp Preserve a 116-year Tradition of Democracy € with independent, pro-parity, pro-democracy candidates or support €œDartmouth Undying € and €œcounter these destructive forces € of democracy and suffrage. In the coming Association of Alumni election just these two views are on the ticket.


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