Why didn't the Founding Fathers foresee/prevent the Swamp I.e. the mega corp lobbyist govt complex system military media financers Fed

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    Are you seriously asking why they could not foretell the future 200 years in advance? I know that there is some tendence to "divinize" them, but this is ridiculous. To put some examples, the presidential election system worked... until 1804, when it had to ammended, there were serious crisis in 1812 and 1833, and less than a century later there was a Civil War...
    – SJuan76
    Jan 15, 2018 at 0:49
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    This seems incoherent. To the extent that this question makes any sense, it may be worth pointing out that not much has changed. Backroom deals, information asymmetry, war profiteering, etc., were all major phenomena back in those days; they didn't need to "foresee" such things because they already existed. For example, many of the founding fathers opposed slavery, but none of them had the power to do anything about it. They did not have the luxury of complete political dominance; their own political standings weren't that secure.
    – Nat
    Jan 15, 2018 at 1:37
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    [T]he mega corp lobbyist govt complex system military media financiers Fed conspiracy theory.
    – Brythan
    Jan 15, 2018 at 3:27
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    I would argue that the founding fathers did exactly what you claim they didn't. They gave people the vote. They set term limits and balance of power. Voters have all the tools they need to vote against lobby's and corporations, but voters don't always get it right.
    – userLTK
    Jan 15, 2018 at 6:27
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    @userLTK Term limits (at a Presidential level, at least, which I think are currently the only Federal term limits?) are a 20th Century innovation.
    – owjburnham
    Jan 15, 2018 at 13:31

1 Answer 1


They did, in a way. This is partly why they insisted on small, less-powered, federal government.

Because the only practical way to prevent lobbying, is to eliminate the things for the government to be lobbied for. As long as you have a big, powerful, and money-rich government, lobbying is worth the effort and therefore basically inevitable, in some way, shape or form (the return on lobbying investment is always good).

Additionally, they explicitly made numerous references in debates, and provisions in law, to prevent the big perceived threat - lobbying by foreign governments.

As a side note, "mega corp" may sound like a nice populist slogan, but AARP is a major lobbying force that is the cause of one of the biggest (some would argue THE biggest) strategic issues facing US economy - the enormous fraction of US budget that is spent - and even bigger one projected to be spent next 30 years - on social support of retirees. Yet they are not a "mega corp".

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    This is on the right track, but could do with some references to the 'restrictions' on the Federal government in the Constitution, and how elastic they've become in the interim. Jan 15, 2018 at 2:18
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    Re "mega corp": AARP, a non-profit organization with 37 million members, it lobbies, but doesn't do things the typical megacorp does -- i.e. planned competitive plutomaniacal inebriety, while lobbying sufficient impunity for its next few benders/quarters. Keeping with that idea, of megacorps as reckless rabelasian loot-drunk Gargantuas turning rivers yellow and whatnot, and comparing it to your stated dread of Leviathan. Are these gargantuas dependent children who'll starve without their senior Leviathan, or a herd equivalent made bolder without a greater monster to eat them?
    – agc
    Jan 15, 2018 at 4:46

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