In a nation born as the first great experiment in modern democracy, independent presidential candidate James Jerome Bell seeks to rescue that heritage from the erosion of citizen participation. He seeks to dissolve the grip of the ideology, intoned by big-money interests for more than twenty years, that government is intrinsically undesirable and destructive of liberty; that elected officials should slash spending on social programs in the name of freedom.

Independent presidential candidate James Jerome Bell challenges that tactic by calling on all Americans to think deeply about the meaning of government of the people, by the people, and for the people. In a democracy, individuals should come together to form structures of governance that protect and advance the common good.

We, the people, are the government.

As such, independent presidential candidate James Jerome Bell believes that we can direct government to fulfill its finest goals and highest purposes. American citizens must not permit usurpation of their authority by acts of individuals and government agencies that isolate or insulate government from citizen oversight. We, the people, have a responsibility to participate in self-government through all the means that our Constitution provides. Citizens of a democracy must have the information and ability to determine the actions of their government. The vast concentrations of wealth and power that have occurred in recent years are inherently undemocratic. The deregulation of corporate activity and the decentralization and underfunding of the regulatory structures that remain (accompanied by the centralizing of big money) have resulted in disastrous consequences for this nation. The true owners of the public lands, pension funds, and the public airwaves are the American people, who today have little or no control over their pooled assets or their commonwealth. The power of civic action is an antidote to the corporate control of so much of our lawmaking and regulating. The pervasive abuse imposed by corporate power increasingly undermines our democracy. The candidacy of James Jerome Bell seeks to rekindle the democratic flame. As voting citizens, taxpayers, workers, consumers, and stakeholders; we must unite to exercise our rights and — as Thomas Jefferson urged — to counteract the “excesses of the moneyed interests.” Toward this end, James Jerome Bell considers serious reform of campaign funding to be an essential in curbing the influence of corporations on lawmakers and regulatory agencies. American democracy is an ongoing, unfolding project — dynamic and creative in nature. James Jerome Bell is committed to the strengthening of our civil society, including the many mediating institutions at the community level that characterize a functioning democracy. He seeks to heal the alienation and apathy that has been cultivated in the citizenry by the power brokers of the status quo. As righteous anger about the crippling of our democracy is rising in the land, James Jerome Bell offers constructive alternatives. He seeks to repair the plummeting opinion of the United States in the international community resulting from our arrogant, narcissistic foreign policy of recent years. A growing and grave imbalance between the citizens of this country and the interests that extract power from the citizens is an imminent danger to our security as well as our social stability. Our country should view itself as a member of the community of nations… not above it. The United States could well play a leadership role in that community; but only if we become committed to an eco-social vision of peace, national self-determination and international cooperation.