United States is currently in the midst of selecting its President. The candidates mostly talk about topics such as lowering tax rates, health care insurance premiums, budget deficit, war strategies etc. As a lay person, I cannot intellectually tell the difference between 5% tax cut versus 20% just as much as I would not know anything about my car if it had problems.
Common man who has the power to vote a leader, is doing so with such little intellectual discrimination. There is some information and knowledge sharing but these heavy topics of economics, health, politics and war are beyond the understanding of common man. This is the truth. Unfortunately, politicians take advantage by speaking half truths. They present themselves externally as nice, suave, and lovable human being who cares for everyone. They talk with such conviction and articulation that they sweep off one's feet and carry them to euphoric and phantasmagorical states of future existence. Common man not caring to go deeper than the external veneer is happy to vote his candidate based on external performance. Four year roles and the whole circus of promises continue. People like to hear those promises and so the shallow idea of democracy continues!
In my opinion, therefore, democracy cannot work because there are no leaders who are ready to speak the truth and no people to hear it. And I have not even touched on lobbyists and other vested power holders. Therefore, we live in a society of cheaters and cheated. If we objectively use facts and data to assess the current situation, in the past 30 or 40 years, one can safely say on a global basis, leaders have failed their people. Below is one picture to illustrate my point.
If interested you can find more facts in link1 and link2.
So what is the solution for this cheater-cheated scenario? The only solution is to have leaders who are ethical and moral and are intrinsically connected to God (not religious dogma). This is how it works. If a man or woman who is a leader in power and loves God with his heart, mind and soul, then the natural by-product of such love will be to serve the creation of God. Like they say - love me-love my dog. Similarly if we love God truly beyond mundane designations, then we will also love His creation (no doubt) - this natural world/environment, plants, animals and human beings alike. When this happens, there is no question inequity and gaps. Because the leader will take from the well-to-do and share it with the impoverished and such balance will make all sentient beings free from anxiety. This sort of leader was present during Vedic times where the leader (the Monarch) was elected based on character and love for God. Hence they were called raja rishis or saintly kings. They were elected not by common man by a team of saintly people who renounced the fruits of this world.
We can still bring back such Godly atmosphere provided I put God in the center of my life and live according to His principles. Then I inspire others to do the same. Gradually as the rising tide raises all boats, we will see the consciousness of "I" and "mine" erode within our heart and love for God and concomitant love for His creation will increase.
Therefore, the verdict is clear- the buck starts with you. Chant Hare Krishna, put God in the center of your life and make this world a better place. Then you cannot be cheated and you can be that ideal leader helping others.