Home > A1 > Government Reflection #2: Reflecting on Congressional Government by Woodrow Wilson

Government Reflection #2: Reflecting on Congressional Government by Woodrow Wilson

Through the past few months in Government we have explored the different faces of the American government. We spent a large amount of time on congress and their effectiveness and they struggled to find a solution to the fiscal cliff crisis and now gun control. Time and time we were disappointed by the lack of structure and effectiveness found in congress and the negative shadow it cast on the future of The United States. As we struggled to find a solution for our future we pushed forward in the class straight into Woodrow Wilson’s Congressional Government. It seemed that the explanation for our future failure lay in our past. Woodrow Wilson’s critical analysis of congress holds the key to fixing problems currently Plaguing the United States. As we read Congressional Government I found myself realizing more and more the level of confusion and misdirection our government puts out. Though modernly it can perhaps be blamed on social media I think differently, given that Woodrow Wilson wrote his whole Doctoral dissertation on the issue of confusion in congress. Woodrow Wilson, A Democrat and 28th President of the United States of America, was destined for a long career in politics. In his doctoral dissertation he writes of the confusion and ineffectiveness of congress. The lack of distinct leaders in congress and the process in which they address legislation falls under attack by Wilson. Comparing the Prime Minister of Great Britain to our own speaker of the house shows us how frail our own system can be.  Wilson states that”He (The Speaker of the House) sits too still in his chair, and is too evidently not on the floor of the body over which he presides, to make it seem probable to the ordinary judgment that he has much immediate concern in legislation after it is once set afoot.” He means that though all acknowledge the power of the speaker of the house he really doesn’t have much legitimate power. Modernly we have Speaker of the House John Boehner whose role extends much farther than being speaker of the house but to being the head of the Republican party. As if congress itself was not difficult enough to understand, we have our major party differences combining with the confusion of congress to create a mess of the system we call congress. So what do we do? If Woodrom Wilson saw issues with Congress in the mid 1800’s, and now almost 200 years later we are struggling with the same issues! With a president that faces attacks both on personal and national levels, A Congress that recently failed the USA by failing to enact effective legislation to prevent jumping over the fiscal cliff and a Supreme court that is being bombarded by revolutionary cases it seems our country is falling apart on all three sides. But the resources we have available since the days of Wilson have significantly increased. Our biggest tool may be Social Media. Though some may say that the citizens of the United States have no need to be heavily involved in our government, I say that transparency in the matters at the top of our countries docket will help American’s understand their own needs. The level of complication in all branches of our government is far too high. If we use social media to clearly explain the motivation behind the branches actions it will restore Americas confidence in the decisions made by the government. We should use this resource not only to empower the government but to hold it accountable. If America know’s the bills on the table in congress it can encourage the government to push it through or veto it. For our country to remain the great nation it once was we must ensure that with our growing population comes a growing ability to educate the people on the goings on in Government in an unbiased manner. If the American government creates a social media network that is  transparent and easy to understand, that holds the right people responsible for their actions in an unbiased way, then perhaps Americans could find a way to better understand their government. There will always be political parties, and the effort to change the set up of our government is too large a task for the United States to under go, but if we can clear some of the murk that blinds the people of the United States then perhaps we can reach a point where we see our government for what it truly is whether that be a good sight or not. The result of that being that the American people see the direct effects of the work done by the people elected. The people can only realize their own power when they see it’s results.

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