Looking carefully at that which is unseen.

Daily Archives: October 27, 2011

Thinking about: Democracy

Democracy is two wolves and a sheep voting on lunch. Politics, which is how democrats determine who gets to be a wolf and who gets to be a sheep, is nothing more (and nothing less) than ritualized war, where the snoutcounters (thank you, Harry Turtledove) believe that since 51% should be able to beat the crap out of 49%, therefore the 51% should get their way.

Representative democracy, such as the US has today, is simply the 51% deciding on specific individuals to do their pillaging for them, rather than having the courage to do it themselves. They hide behind a claim that “we won the election, therefore we get what we want, just like the law says,” without having the historical awareness that the US was intended to be a republic, not a representative democracy. Losers in elections always claim that the winners should be bound by constitutional rules (more on that in a bit), but as soon as the worm turns and the losers become winners, that attitude vanishes like the morning dew and the new winners proceed to run roughshod over the new losers.

America was founded as a republic. In theory, winners and losers are bound by the Constitution, a document that is the operator’s manual and limiting rules for the running of the nation. Unfortunately, the people who interpret and enforce those rules are the very ones who have a vested interest in ignoring the rules. Paper chains simply do not hold Leviathan in check for very long when Leviathan has his normal fuel of human greed, envy, and lust for power. This is, of course, the reason that two centuries ago republics were seen as quaint political entities, doomed to failure. And only the truly blinkered can look at America today and conclude that it has not failed as a republic. Given the wealth of the land, the industriousness of the people for some time, and historical good fortune America managed to do well for quite some time as an oligarchy/representative democracy. Unfortunately, those factors are diminishing and so we have America in the 21st century, a nation running out of everything. Including time.

The thing about political entities is that while they can substitute for war, war can also substitute for politics. America is running out of resources, but is filling up with various groups who are fighting harder and harder for pieces of what’s left (rather than working to build more). This is a classic sign of a nation in a downward spiral, with the only questions remaining being “how soon?” and “how hard?”

Got popcorn?