Hoping to keep a list here of the most unethical political practices, and how some states (whether in USA or other countries) mitigate them. Potential corruption in any institution with power is a given, and well thought out state constitutions are written to head it off. Constitutional amendments are after thoughts that are difficult to implement, usually requiring a citizens, grass-roots kind of interest to initiate, as incumbents naturally resist changes to the current system’s machinery and status quo.
At the top of my list of cons:
Legislative manipulation of the electoral process
Gerrymandering – Redefining electoral district boundaries according to voter demographics in order to statistically favor party-line wins in future elections
Impeding voter access – Registration and polling site access restrictions that unequally affect one demographic over another
Financially influencing the electoral process and future legislation
When “free speech” is a highest-bidder commodity – e.g. when corporations and other institutions with big money can buy media and other campaign venues that individual citizens can’t normally afford
Big money lobbying – again, a highest-bidder monetary power that usurps individual citizen access to their representatives
Thwarted balance of powers
When one or more governmental branch (e.g. legislative, judicial, and executive) acts with immunity to checks and balances; religious institutions can also corrupt the balance
Lack of transparency in governmental processes
This is a larger problem in autocracies, oligarchies, and current communist states, whereby those in power operate freely without citizen access or oversight to the process
Active discrediting of, and government restrictions on free press
Questions to consider. How do some states and countries successfully fight against these corruptions, and gain freedom for citizenry? How can citizens initiate needed reforms in spite of incumbent-seated powers that be? How can citizens inform themselves from reliable sources of information and data, and help each other to make rational decisions and voting choices?
Secularism and progressivism by nature seek to revise rather than further embed the status quo, the incumbency, so we should naturally have some good ideas here. Am I missing anything here, in the big picture?