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Oligarchy in the US - Essay Example

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The wealthy, irrespective of their small percentage, determine policies that govern Americans, contrary to the perception that democracy…
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Oligarchy in the US
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Oligarchy in the United s? Jeffrey Winters and Benjamin Page’s article “Oligarchy in the United s?” explores the oligarchic nature of the US political system. The wealthy, irrespective of their small percentage, determine policies that govern Americans, contrary to the perception that democracy gives the majority power. Data on the US distributions of income and wealth indicates that rich Americans have a superior political influence than average citizens do (Winters and Page 731). Even so, the authors argue and present evidence that democracy and oligarchy can coexist although they are not equally exclusive.
The audience of the article is the average American populace. Aristotle, credited for the term oligarchy, defines oligarchy as the exercise of power by wealthy citizens, which causes intense political disparities that essentially accompany excessive material inequalities. While the average American populace constitutes a large percentage of Americans as compared to the wealthy, they still have no voice in decision making concerning economic and political issues in America. As a result, economic disparities continue to persist within Americans, and the average American populace must understand their role in public policy making.
Jeffrey Winters and Benjamin Page present evidence that the United States is both democratic and oligarchic. The fact that oligarchs can operate separately without knowing each other is evidence that oligarchy can go unnoticed in several instances (Winters and Page 739). In addition, the extent of economic disparity in the United States proves the authors points about oligarchy. Even so, the authors affirm that there is significant substantiation from academic research that public policy in the United States is not set by oligarchs, but rather reacts strongly to the inclination of normal citizens. The coexistence of oligarchy and democracy is evident because, at times the decision of people counts, while in other cases, the viewpoint of the wealthy sways public opinion.
Works Cited
Winters, Jeffrey and Page, Benjamin. “Oligarchy in the United States?” Perspectives on Politics,
Vol. 7/No. 4. December 2009. Doi:10.1017/S1537592709991770 Read More
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