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Although many people believe that society is shaped by laws and regulations, a small and influential group of people has an impact on various aspects that control the lives of people. In most cases, the policies are also made by the people in power, whereby they primarily focus on their welfare. Oligarchy in sociology has been one of the concepts that have been used to show how society can be affected by powerful people. Typically, oligarchy shows how some decisions made by dominant groups determine the lives of people in society. Plutocracy has also been a factor that can be analyzed when focusing on how people live in a particular state. For instance, many people have argued that America is a plutocracy since the wealthy and the powerful largely control the lives of other people. Therefore, this analysis shows that indeed, America is a plutocracy and this is manifested through several means.
Various Issues that Reveal Plutocracy in America
One of the issues that can be analyzed regarding plutocracy in America involves justice. In this case, many poor people seeking justice after being violated by the rich do not get justice since the rich corrupt the system in their favor. Many protests have also been experienced in the country, whereby people have argued that justice was not met. Besides, bribery has also been experienced in many states, whereby the rich bribe the judges and the authorities to cover up evidence about a specific case. Many poor people have also been oppressed when seeking justice, whereby their cases end up being ruled partially. The government has also ensured that policies are implemented to ensure that all people are valued and treated equally. Nevertheless, many people violate these policies, including the authorities, which causes many people to lack justice in their cases. Constitutional rights have also been violated by many people when dealing with cases involving people in power and poor citizens. Therefore, plutocracy in America has been experienced in cases where justice should prevail (Eitzen et al., 2013). For instance, claims of race-based discrimination in policing have been experienced in many states. Nonetheless, many victims do not get justice since they belong to a minority race or ethnicity.
Plutocracy has also been experienced in businesses and investments in America. In this case, more prominent companies have focused on strategies that can ensure that small firms do not flourish since it can lead to increased competition. For instance, many companies have guaranteed that they lower their prices to ensure that small firms lose their customers. Although competition in businesses is factual, some big companies have failed to focus on business ethics and engage in activities that harm the small firms. The government has also focused on corporate wealth since it mostly impacts the economy of the country (Eitzen et al., 2013). Consequently, monopolistic capitalism has led to the dominance of huge corporations. Some of these huge corporations have also failed to meet the measures that the government has introduced. Conversely, they still operate due to their economic contribution. For instance, air pollution has primarily increased due to globalization which has led to an increase in the number of companies in the United States. Some of these companies have been encouraged to minimize their carbon emission; conversely, the companies continue to operate and emit more gases, which affect people in the community. Small companies have also been absorbed by some of these big companies, while others have been eliminated in the industry. Therefore, wealthy companies have dominated many sectors and have influenced how people live in the communities.
Media also have a significant impact on how people live in the community. Nonetheless, media monopolies have also been experienced in the United States. For instance, many big companies have dominated the industry, whereby they have invested in various states. Many radio and TV channels are owned by big companies. Similarly, many big companies have invested in newspapers and magazines. For instance, the New York Times owns the Boston Globe and many other publications (Eitzen et al., 2013). Therefore, these few big companies have an impact on the way people live in the community since they control and determine what the public reads, hear, and see in the media. For instance, many people learn from the media about various practices that happen in the community, such as criminal activities. Street crime is also primarily focused on the news than white-collar crime, causing many people to believe that crime is primarily conducted in streets. Besides, the media giant controls the content that is broadcasted and the distribution of programming. Consequently, people rarely receive diverse opinions since much of the content is controlled by a few major corporations.
The political system of the United States has also been influenced by the wealthy. Typically, the government should be democratic, and all people should be valued regardless of their socio-economic status. Nonetheless, equality is not exercised since not many people benefit from politicoeconomics as the wealthy and the powerful are the ones who benefit. The state also enforces the law and controls how resources are apportioned (Eitzen et al., 2013). Thus, the wealthy and the powerful ensure that the policies benefit the business community. Besides, some of these large corporations are owned by people in power, which affects other people in society. Bias in the political systems has also been experienced since most of the people in the power elite are from privileged and wealthy backgrounds. The wealthy and the powerful have also ensured that political systems are used to structure society in a manner that their interests are served. The poor are also forced to cope with the challenges that they experience due to the biased political system. For instance, the national debt has become a significant issue, which has forced tax reforms to be considered. The tax reforms may involve an increment in taxes, which affects the poor in society. Political bias has also forced the government to spend resources in foreign wars that have benefited wealthy corporations. Such issues have also affected other people in the community since they pay for the resources used through taxation.
The financing of political campaigns is also a factor that can be used to show how the wealthy influence how people live in society. In this case, political campaigns are expensive, and vast amounts of money are spent to finance the whole process. Consequently, the wealthy, who can quickly raise their money, have the advantage to conduct their campaigns and clinch the seats. Some of the wealthy candidate’s political money also mostly favors the chairs of congressional committees, which limits other people from winning the elections (Eitzen et al., 2013). The campaigns also restrict people from poor backgrounds from participating in various political positions. Although Congress has also tried to curb the role of money in elections, the wealthy have always ensured that they can find a way around the spending limits.
The candidate selection process has also been influenced by wealth. (Eitzen et al., 2013). Consequently, candidates who cannot access wealth or who are not wealthy face challenges since they end up losing to the wealthy. Such issues have also impacted how people live in society since the wealthy always access power and focus on issues that are likely to benefit them. Large corporations also influence candidate selection by offering financial aids to the candidates who can access wealth with ease; and in return, these corporations benefit from the candidates if they win since they protect the corporations.
To conclude, oligarchy and plutocracy are major issues despite the government being democratic. Many problems that affect people in society are steered by the decisions made by people in power and the wealthy. Besides, poor choices that are made by people in power affect the poor in society. Corporation monopoly has also changed how people live in society since huge corporations control small firms. For instance, the issue of media giants shows that people get information that is determined by the large media corporations. The political system has also an impact on the lives of people since it is controlled by the powerful and wealthy. In this case, policies and other decisions that are made are likely to help those in power and the wealthy. Moreover, the poor and powerless absorb the cost of societal changes. In essence, the plutocracy has been experienced in America, and one can agree that America is a plutocracy.
Eitzen, D. S., Zinn, M. B., & Smith, K. E. (2013). Social problems. Pearson Higher Ed.
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