Democracy Dies in Darkness

Guest Post, Bruce Danielson

Martial Law? Panic? Hysteria? Summed up, we are experiencing lack of leadership. Winner takes all, is not leadership. It is authoritarianism and right in the middle of our elections? Democracy dies in darkness.

We are experiencing a strange time for our country and we the people who own it are left in confusion. We are people who live in and love our country. It is based on deist and socialist philosophies of our founding “fathers”. We share this country with our neighbors but elect people to help with governing through leadership. Our country is a shared ownership of the people of this country. No corporation or church or potentate own us or the government.

It is only through collective laziness do we let things happen to us and our government.

Our founding fathers gave us the power through tools to be responsible for the country’s survival. At its core is the accidental 1st Amendment (it was actually the 3rd Amendment) which we hold sacred. Our lives revolve around what we have grown comfortably used to with this belief in our media, religions and our rights to assemble in any form we wish.

We have a local government currently run / lead by people who have this idea it is their government to tell us what to do by edicts. The mayor’s office can issue any Executive Order they want to but they have no force of law. The Mayor can issue orders to shut down city offices and buildings but the Mayor cannot tell the City Council office building and members to shut down. It is simple separation of powers. We do not give up our democratic principles and processes because someone shouts panic.

The sparse Sioux Falls City Council meeting of March 17th, 2020.

It was interesting to attend and just watch the panic look of some of the dais members as they had to listen to the minimal information and public comments presented. Some of the pontificating bluster of a few dais members seemed to show their collective fear. A few of the blustering members showed their ignorance and fear by the way they pontificated and then voted.

Fear of the unknown is present when there are no plans to get through the crisis.

In fact there was no end date for the ordinances recently passed giving extraordinary powers to the sovereign. Why were there no sunset or renewal dates put into the ordinance? This is how authoritarian power is gained, by accident or design, it happened. Now it must be fixed.

The nastiness shown by some Councilors toward proposals presented during a time of legitimate questioning was staggering to the mind. Democracy dies in darkness meant something at that moment. We had councilmembers trying to shut down discussion just because they were afraid to think on their own. It was harsh and disgusting how the situations were handled.

Underlying it all was the developing COVID-19 issues.

The Council members showed panic and hysteria during their meeting. It was based on lackadaisical attitudes toward their leadership responsibilities. We are a representative democracy where we hire people to plan and lead us through supposedly uncharted waters to prevent fear and hysteria. What we are now watching from our national leaders, is their concerns on how they can personally make money through this hysteria. We are watching the stock market crash to the basement, we are watching the ethics of our leaders drop right along with. It has been announced in the national news how members of Congress, using inside information, sold millions of dollars of stocks just before the government announced the severity of this COVID issue. Just because it could be legal for them to buy stocks on inside information, does it make it ethical? And then to sell it on insider information?  

It does not take much historical study to see how the panics of 9/11, anthrax, stock market crash of 2008, SARS and other hysterias of the recent two decades to how see the greed of our national leaders allows these “panics” to happen and how it then makes it easier to declare. Panics allow people to gain power never before granted, to later make behaviors look more suspicious. The institutionalized lack of planning, causes panics and the power players gain more power, it is simple and historical. If we distrust our leaders for their actions or lack of sufficient actions, it is for good reason.

We have pain now because we have not stood up for Democracy.

Locally, we recently had a glad-handing mayor who promised forever pie-in-the-sky promises of good times if he “gave” entertainment palaces without any regard for the necessities required for modern, safe life. We now have a hysterical national panic even clearing the streets and stores of Sioux Falls. This panic caused in large part to pollution, sanitation and hygiene is now shutting down much of what we know. When our City Council was tasked with approving a monster sized sewer debt, the Council did not look at what the real root causes for this sudden panic requiring the spending of $265 million. Our previous mayor simply ignored the unsexy, unfun necessities of life like sewers, so he could claim boom time fun. Why burden the public with unsexy things like sewers when he could offer us PBR and singing cowboys? So during panics, reactionary votes are held encumbering society for decades to come.

Insider connections grow in panics.

We, as a people, must now bow to the corrupt practices in the darkness created by panics and hysteria? We must correct the stupid by replacing with smart.

The COVID-19 is serious. We, including the hired leaders, don’t know all the ramifications of it yet. As the news comes out, as a result this panic period, the public becomes even more disappointed in our leaders. Saying you are “Proven, Positive” does not make a leader. Being the follower of a glad-handed potentate does not make a leader. Being a power hungry authoritarian does not make a leader, it creates a dictatorship.

Build consensus through leadership, not force.

This is not a time to drop to our knees and pray just because we did not force our duly elected leaders to do the jobs they were hired to do. We are a secular society we are the owners of. We attend city meetings to try and make the voted on leaders of our government finally understand we did not vote them into office so they could just collect a paycheck. We voted them into office to actually ask question and not just pontificate.

We have seen little to no leadership so far. We have had months and years of warnings to the prepare for sewer plant upgrades, disease prevention, food safety, tree bugs, invasive species and more. What does our “leadership” do? Build play palaces on land they do not own, needlessly borrow money to complete the  play palace projects put on public agenda before most of us were born and then decide after the playthings are built incorrectly be forced to borrow even more money so the sewage works right.

Democracy does not work in darkness.

Democracy, nevertheless must not be disgraced. Democracy must not be despised. Democracy must be respected. Democracy must be honoured. Democracy must be cherished. Democracy must be an essential, an integral part of the Souvereignty, and have a controul over the whole Government, or moral Liberty cannot exist, or any other Liberty.
—John Adams, Letter to John Taylor, 12 De. 1814


#1 D@ily Spin on 03.21.20 at 8:32 am

Events from the last 2 weeks brought this country to its knees. It will get worse. I’m suspicious. Is this how one world government will transpire? Russia and Saudia Arabia have few pandemic cases. Together they lowered oil prices such that this industry is in default. Combined with travel, entertainment, and store retail about a third of the economy is affected. The dollar is losing against foreign currency. The stock market lost a third of its value. Gold price dropped when it should rise. Trump disbanded the pandemic commission just before the outbreak. He’s fired other staff. There aren’t enough hospital beds, masks, or virus tests. When Air Force One lands in Moscow, we’ll know what’s happened

#2 LJL on 03.21.20 at 6:22 pm

Not reading 1 word of that post considering the credibility of the author.

#3 l3wis on 03.21.20 at 8:16 pm

So what you are saying is you only read it once? LOL.

#4 l3wis on 03.22.20 at 1:20 pm

From Bruce Danielson;

My answer to LJL and others…

To the known, unknown,(because we actually know who you are) going by the fake ID “LJL”:

This is not the time to sit back and hide from the world. This is not the time to hide behind a fake ID. The world needs all of us to remind our power hungry authoritarian leaders, the people still own the government. We want planning and thought responses. We do not martial law and stupid statements based on ignorance.

Comments are made by persons hiding behind fake IDs in some of the postings on, forums and other legitimate websites. Some of us actually use our names to publish comments or articles on this website. We are not afraid to hide in our identity to try and make cutting, snide remarks.

The thrust of the article I recently had publish was about fear and you are proving the point about fear.

I did not grow up here in South Dakota. I grew up in many neighborhoods of America with many neighbors of Jewish and other heritages. Many of these wonderful neighbors took the time to educate me about their escapes or their family’s survival during the terror of the abuses they experienced. I have never forgotten the talks these people had with the young me about the curse of fear and hysteria.

Even though these families talked of their love of Germany or Poland or Austria or wherever they were from, they never wanted to go back because of the curse of the hysteria caused by fear they saw.

They had to find ways to survive in fear. The Jewish people of Nazi Germany, after valiant service during WWI to the German monarchy, were crushed by the way the hysterical mobs took away their freedoms, wealth and so many lives, because of a mania based on fear.

I graduated with a double degree in History and Political Science because I wanted to never let fear and hysteria ever take over our country. I do not choose to hide in fear behind a fake ID so I can feel safe to make cutting comments at another person.

I detest cowards who choose to use fake IDs, verbal or physical assaults, bullying or weapons to get their way. I collect petition signatures, I help people vote, I help people run for political office, I speak to make sure you can speak and more to help the next generations see change can happen it we work together.

So to the person who goes by the fake ID LJL, get involved and quit being afraid of your shadow. I would gladly have a public debate on a stage with you. What do you have to fear?

If you want to answer my open letter to you, please contact and ask the owner to publish it.

#5 LJL on 03.23.20 at 12:12 pm

You bring this fake ID bullshit out every time I’m on point. Simply put, anyone who associates with you is ultimately branded a crazy. I wonder why? I believe Theresa would be a lot better off without your counsel. Patt Starr has done well without it.

Flipside, I could be making some new influential friends if I identified to all. But I haven’t and I won’t.

Since you decided to list your aggrievances, I’ll list mine. I detest liars and exaggerators. Using marshall law, Nazi’s and Jewish holocaust during this times as an excellent example of your repellent behavior. Pretending to understand their plight because you lived near to them is utterly repulsive.

And to you original guest post:
Using this time of actual public panic to push this “deep-state”bullshit is a lack of decency and morality. And again I will say it’s a clear sign of an unstable person! Do healthy people use a pandemic to create more fear? Furthermore, I posted on this thread simply to throw the bullshit flag into an echo chamber of utter fear propoganda.

If you know who I am, why would it bother you so much?
I’m the guy selling tractor parts, so why is it so stressful to you that I have another opinion and find you uncredible? Maybe Scott could grow a spine and say no thank you to some of your pathetic ramblings.

And, At least I stick to the same ID.

Yours Truly,

#6 l3wis on 03.23.20 at 7:48 pm

“Simply put, anyone who associates with you is ultimately branded a crazy. I wonder why?”

Funny, I have heard the same about you. Ironically, I have known who you are for months, I don’t care, anonymous speech is protected. I think Bruce’s point is when you hurdle personal attacks you should have the nads to back it up with your real name. But I don’t know too many former chairs of the SD GOP who practice integrity, though you have received more accolades than most of them.

#7 LJL on 03.25.20 at 9:11 pm

“former chairs of the SD GOP” or tractor parts guy, which is it?

So next month will I be the grand puba of the Nights who say Nee?

Nice try of “not outing me”.

I’ll admit this…It gives me much pleasure reading you grind your gears playing who is it.

Because if my theories and words were wrong, you really wouldn’t care and it I wouldn’t bother you so much. “You only catch flak when your over the target”.


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