Fallacy of Democracy

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Today reading a comment on WB someone again rambled on about the US being this prime example of Democracy.  The only issue is that the US has never been a true Democracy and was never intended to be a true Democracy.

 

We were set up to be and still are a Republic. In other words, we elect people that are suppose to represent the will of the people but do so in a wise, thoughtful, retrospect and mature way.  In reality terms, the will of the people should not be honored when those of higher stature think its not in the best interests of the people.

 

We all know that only white land owners were originally allowed to vote.  Clearly the Founding Fathers were fearful of the huddled masses determining which individuals that were going to represent their interests.  Only men, and men only, of means, education, and worldliness were viewed as suitable for voting purposes.  

 

There are of course other indicators that our Founding Fathers feared Democracy.  Until Wilson Senators were not chosen by popular vote.  The electoral college not the popular vote chooses the President.

 

Setting aside the natural prejudices at the time over women and blacks, most "working men" at the time, or non land owners, were illiterate and probably had little comprehension of anything beyond their tiny farming village.  Trying to understand concepts of currency, a centralized bank, foreign trade, tariffs, military, etc. would have been far beyond their intellectual capacity.  Better to leave it to those that could study and contemplate such complex issues and then choose those that would make good decisions in these hard to grasp areas.

 

Of course over time Americans began to read and write and with urbanization understand the world beyond them.  Incorrect stereotypical ideas against women and blacks slowly faded away.  Still, there has never been any meaningful move away from a Republic.

 

Supposedly, our Founding Fathers saw politics as a short term gig for those that were accomplished and felt the need to give back to society.  They would be our wise men, fully able and willing to look out for the citizenry.  They'd campaign as to why they were the best for the job and the people (or more accurately those allowed to vote) would decide.  These were not to be kings or rulers but the most noble of men to preside over the best for the country.  

 

While no one knows exactly what our Founding Fathers believed their experiment while successful hasn't been the panacea it was might have thought to be.  I can't imagine anyone with a fiber of brain matter looking at people like W, Obama, Pelosi, Schummer, Trump, Ryan, Maxine Waters (and all the rest) and thinking "wise people."  The idea that they are representing the whole of society is quite questionable, and sadly laughable.

 

By all means it can be argued that "mob rule" would have been our downfall.  Sometimes it was necessary to have adults in the room and not a plethora of people running on unfounded emotions.  Somebody had to make the hard decisions and be able to do so with the capacity to develop a deep understanding of the issues.  I guess the term "adults in the room" has lost some of its intended effect.

 

Today in modern day life we seem to run much more on superficial fluff, or least some of us do.  Friends are how many people that will hit the "like" button on your Twitter page.  We are now suppose to market ourselves to a prospective employer as a "brand."  Driving a Volvo will make us much better and caring parents.  So its shouldn't be a surprise our politicians have been following suit and campaigns look more like reality television, which isn't "real" at all.

 

Conservatives like to claim our Founding Fathers wanted small government.  However, by setting up a Republic whether by design or not they laid the foundation for big government.  As society started to grow much more complex in the late 19th century someone had to contend with the fallout. Since it would fall on the shoulders of the elected officials not the individuals of the society naturally the size of government would explode.  After all, we never voted on a public pension plan (social security), going to war, protective measures for society, going to the moon and on and on.  The people will elect under a Republic do.  Moreover, our Founding Fathers could have never remotely imagined a 1900 United States leave only a 2018 United States. Anyone for example claiming that our Founding Fathers wouldn't approve of an EPA, or a Pentagon or unemployment insurance is just wildly speculating.

 

Ultimately our Founding Fathers were victims of the ignorance of their times.  Blacks were considered unable to think, read and write.  Near ditto for women.  It was assumed well read and cultured men had the wisdom and human nurturing to provide for a great society.  It was assumed that the masses would never have the ability and motivation to learn what the learned knew.  Very much how parents become overprotective of their children fearing they won't be able to realize right from wrong or protect themselves against evil.

 

The Founding Fathers should take heart in the fact that somehow this disjointed nation state in many ways diverse and divided from each other somehow has stayed together, even with a temporary separation less than 100 years from founding.  Given that we've been mostly a melting pot from around the world it's actually quite amazing.  Time will tell if we will continue our lucky streak.

 

However, we are anything but a Democracy, specifically on a national level.  I think debate is valid on whether the people we've sent to Washington DC over the years are what our Founding Fathers envisioned.  By no means career politicians that saw it as an open invitation until the day they die.  I'm sure our Founding Fathers would be really stumped over some of the characters that have risen to the highest office in the land and the most important job in the world.  They would have to be shaking their heads wondering how we've pulled this thing off over so many decades.

 

 

 

Comments

George N Romey Added Nov 26, 2018 - 4:49pm
Then maybe you can tell me the last time Americans voted on going to war?  Or to fund a certain agency?  Go to the moon?
 
No country has ever had a Democracy.  And I didn't say one did Douche Bag.  Maybe you need some remedial reading lessons.
Cliff M. Added Nov 26, 2018 - 5:21pm
The Republic has become the best democracy money can buy. The system of checks and balances has become well protected from the majority and pads the pockets and bank accounts of those elected to office. In no way has the sellout to the special interest's been in the best interest of the ordinary American.Money talks and bullshit walks should be the motto of our elected government.
George N Romey Added Nov 26, 2018 - 6:02pm
I agree Cliff. It’s definitely government of the .01% no matter the party. 
Cliff M. Added Nov 26, 2018 - 7:09pm
The crooked politics is slowly losing their cover.It appears to be a ground up movement but real traction won't happen until the control of the politics by the money players get put in their place.Sanders appeared to make some headway with his massive small donor effort.Limiting the money to small amounts is the only way to give the political power back to the majority of the people.
Dave Volek Added Nov 26, 2018 - 7:37pm
If one is referring to the exact philosophical definitions of democracy & republic, the article is correct: we should not call USA a democracy.
 
However, a popular definition of democracy has emerged. All sorts of countries from New Zealand to Slovakia to Japan call themselves democracies. Yet their behavior is very much like the philosophical republic. There really does not exist any so-called democracy that applies "mob rule" to its legislative process.
 
Legally speaking, Canada is a constitutional monarchy--a leftover from the civil war in England when both sides made compromises to stop the fighting. The Queen of English (or her representative) can legally override the will of the Canadian Parliament. But that veto has never been used in Canada's history. Canadian government behaves very much like a republic.
 
If I were to give a modern definition of democracy, I would say:
 
A country where reasonably fair and periodic elections allow the citizenry the opportunity to throw out a government that is governing too ineptly or too corruptly or too distant---and the losing side willingly steps aside for the victor after the election.
 
I don't see much point on splitting hairs. It does little to move the world forward.
 
 
Cullen Kehoe Added Nov 26, 2018 - 8:00pm
George, I think some of your assumptions are not completely right. 
 
In colonial America, my understanding is that many Americans (probably the majority) COULD read and write. There were active newspapers. They probably were not educated well but were literate. 
 
The reason for this was based in religion. Protestant Christians sought to own their own Bible and to be able to read their own Bible. They still remembered the days when the Bible was unavailable (in Medieval times). 
 
Another famous story that would have been read in colonial America was Pilgrim's Progress. This was a metaphor about the Christian life that was written in Britain in the 17th century and actively read in the 18th and 18th centuries. 
 
I read Alexander Hamilton's biography. In the small, insignificant Caribbean island of Nevis / St. Kitt's, he was a bastard (in the technical sense) and sorta poor (lower middle class). Due to his not being raise 'in the (Anglican) church' he wasn't allowed in the regular school for kids and his mother sent him to the Jewish school on the island. Even in that insignificant place, there were 2 different schools a poorish boy could attend. 
Lindsay Wheeler Added Nov 26, 2018 - 8:05pm
Mogg Tsur, you seem so sure of yourself. I can tell that neither you nor George Romney know what the hell you are talking about!!!!!
 
I spent 15 years studying what a republic is. I have Prof. Paul A. Rahe's THREE volume research on republicanism beginning in classical antiquity and how the word was transformed by Renaissance/Enlightenment thinkers and what the FFofA intended.
 
The FFofA REJECTED Classical teaching on what a true republic is and sought to reinvent this form of government.
 
How many here have the Greek texts on politics, or the Loeb Library?  Who here has read Plato?
 
All the terms we describe forms of government with are Greek Terms and the Latin term respublica is a translation of the Greek term "politiea". The Greeks defined the differing forms of government BY THEIR DOMINANT FACTOR, i.e. which caste controlled government. This "representative government" is NOT the definition of a republic! It is the Enlightenment's definition of it which they were REDEFINING the term. 
 
A Republic is Mixed Government where there are two or more castes. Tudor England was a True Republic. America is a democracy, always has been since there is ONLY ONE class but it was a democracy that is limited by State Sovereignty in the Senate. 
 
Here is a 61 page, over 150 footnotes, researched article on the True Definition of a Republic and how it was changed by the Enlightenment thinkers and their followers
 
Trust NOT in Marxist academe; all of Political Science is heavily damaged. 
Lindsay Wheeler Added Nov 26, 2018 - 8:06pm
You use Greek/Roman terms---and have ABSOLUTELY no idea how those words were created!  You truly are idiotes
Leroy Added Nov 26, 2018 - 8:33pm
George, I would argue that with each election that passes we become more of a democracy.   I would prefer that only citizens with skin in the game could vote, else we will continue to vote ourselves other people's money.  A pure democracy is the worst form of government.  My fear is that is exactly where we are headed.
Ryan Messano Added Nov 26, 2018 - 9:25pm
Agree with Lindsay, 100%. The Founders abhorred a Democracy.  All the liberals running around on WB and in America are proof of why.  Having these mindless drones who go around aping every liberal opinion their media and schools tell them with nauseating superiority pretensions is absolutely beyond the pale.  None of the full blown ones commented on here, but a couple of commenters aren't too far off, and haven't got any backbone to resist the mindless drones passionate ignorance. 
 
It's a favorite ploy of the liberals to whine and screech about disenfranchising voters to whip up discord and increase their power.  In reality, those who haven't educated themselves, on their own, and the vast majority of American voters HAVE NOT, HAVE NO BUSINESS VOTING!  If a person hasn't read five biographies of the Founders of America and can't intelligently discuss the Founders vision, they need to stay the HELL away from the voting booths.  But, the Democrats don't want that, they want as many uninformed voters as possible voting, because they know the hoodwinked masses, deceived by their media and schools, are likely to gullibly vote for them an
Ryan Messano Added Nov 26, 2018 - 9:26pm
d their crazy ideas.  If everyone in America could intelligently discuss the Founders and their vision, that would be the end of Crazy Maxine, Gavin Newsom,  The Notorious RBG,  Barry the Fairy, Nancy Hellosi, Pocahantas Warren, Spartacus Booker,  Lying Blumenthal, Crazed Elijah Cummings, the most racist organization in America, the Congressional Black Caucus, and the rest of the crazed loons on the left.  That would be the end of the dangerous cultural Marxism threatening America. 
 
And George, it had nothing to do with only white landowners voting.  Science at the time lied, saying that other races were intellectually inferior, and the Founders simply believed what science told them.  Just like the Democrats today who believe abortion is fine, homosexuality is normal, and climate change is reality.  It's funny how the Democrats screech so outrageously about how flawed the Founders were, when the Founders were duped by science, but not nearly as bad as the Democrats of today are.  Prolly explains why they are so indignant at the Founders, because they say you often hate in others, that which you have within yourself.  Oh, and the Democrats are the real racists.  While they screech about the Founders being racist, they are committing a Holocaust on the black community, with 63% of all deaths in the black community due to abortion.  But, the slick Democrats make sure that blacks don't receive a good education, with the welfare benefits they placed in the black community, ensuring the man isn't in the home.  This leads to a poor education, and so when many blacks cannot do math, as only 10% of the blacks in my city can read and do math at the 12th grade level upon graduation, it's quite easy to deceive them with social media, hellivision, and pop culture.  It's always easy to control those who know a little.  The Democrats forbade blacks from reading in 1861 when the Civil War broke out, and today, they discourage reading in the black community as well.  In both instances it leads to power and money for the Democrats.  In 1861, black labor gave Democrats wealth.  In 2018, black votes give Democrats power.  In every single Democrat city, black poverty and crime rates are far higher than Republican run cities. 
 
Last I checked, the library is free, why don't I see Americans educating themselves on American history? No time?  Well, they watch 9  years of hellivision, so they certainly have time for that.  It's a lack of priorities is what it is. 
 
The real problem is that the people have ceased to be wise and virtuous.  And without that, you cannot have freedom, liberty, and prosperity. 
Katharine Otto Added Nov 26, 2018 - 10:35pm
George,
Looks like you've opened a can of worms, trying to distinguish between a democracy and republic.  I would say the US is neither, because of the electoral college and the Supreme Court, which is an appointed body and has the last word in every law.
 
Also, from what I've read about early American history vis a vis the Constitution and how it came about, I have come to believe that the "Framers" which are held in such high regard, were as self-serving and petty then as now.  The whole Constitutional Convention was held in secret, without advance notice, and ratification was by special assemblies that by-passed the state legislatures.  The Constitution itself is a flabby document, an economic document that claimed ownership of everyone and everything within the borders and obligated itself in no way to the people it corralled.
 
It seems today lots of people believe they know what the "Framers" intended, which may have been an improvement on what went before, but there were a lot of Anglophiles in the bunch, and Alexander Hamilton, especially, was enamored of everything British.  So was George Washington.  They just wanted to replace British taxes with US taxes, so they could have more wealth and control. 
Ryan Messano Added Nov 26, 2018 - 11:17pm
Katharine, the Founders had bad about them, and often wrote about their own wrongs.  It was their understanding of their own corrupt natures that led them to form 3 branches of government.  Yes, they held things in secret, because the vast majority of people then, as now, are uninformed and unfit to make judgements.  We have 22 liberals and RINO's running around WB right now who are all unfit to vote, as they haven't the faintest idea about small government and what a virtuous government looks like.  They make up the majority and will scream and shout if their opinions and votes aren't taken seriously, yet they REFUSE to meaningfully educate themselves.  So, the Founders wisely tried to give them as little power as possible.  Unfortunately we got the 17th amendment in 1913, which gave elections of senators to the people directly, instead of to the state legislature. 
 
Nearly everyone in America came from Britain, so their fascination with their mother country is understandable.  Had the Founders understood that all races were capable of the same intellect, slavery would have been gotten rid of much faster. 
FacePalm Added Nov 26, 2018 - 11:47pm
George-
First, i agree that the Founders quite despised democracy; they were well-aware of it's fatal flaws, having all read Plato's "The Republic."  The United States was designed to be better than the republic of Plato, however, in that a Constitution was written to which all Public Servants swore fealty which not only defined, but more importantly, LIMITED the powers they were able to lawfully exercise.
 
If one reads Article III, they might notice that SCOTUS is NOT delegated the power to "interpret" squat, for starters.
 
Next, one may wish to peruse the Preamble to the Bill of Rights, assuming you can find it; curiously(or perhaps incuriously, once you get a grasp of what's happened in America), it's not put in most Public Fool System textbooks any longer.  The germane portion of it reads "In order to prevent misconstruction(to "misconstrue" is to twist the meaning of) or abuse of it's powers..."
 
Next, take a look at the 9th and 10th Amendments.
 
Taking all 4 of these Constitutional precepts in hand, one can now readily discern that SCOTUS has repeatedly abused and extended the powers it was LAWFULLY delegated - and so has Congress, and so has the Executive.  Why?  No one calls them to account, or holds them liable for the violations of their Oaths of Office...which would be High Crimes, felony perjury charges.
 
But here's a little primer on the differences between a Republic and a Democracy, one which USED to be taught in America:
++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
Our military training manuals used to contain the correct definitions of Democracy and Republic. The following comes from Training Manual No. 2000-25 published by the War Department, November 30, 1928.
DEMOCRACY:

A government of the masses.
Authority derived through mass meeting or any other form of "direct" expression.
Results in mobocracy.
Attitude toward property is communistic--negating property rights.
Attitude toward law is that the will of the majority shall regulate, whether is be based upon deliberation or governed by passion, prejudice, and impulse, without restraint or regard to consequences.
Results in demogogism, license, agitation, discontent, anarchy.

REPUBLIC:

Authority is derived through the election by the people of public officials best fitted to represent them.
Attitude toward law is the administration of justice in accord with fixed principles and established evidence, with a strict regard to consequences.
A greater number of citizens and extent of territory may be brought within its compass.
Avoids the dangerous extreme of either tyranny or mobocracy.
Results in statesmanship, liberty, reason, justice, contentment, and progress.
Is the "standard form" of government throughout the world.

The manuals containing these definitions were ordered destroyed without explanation about the same time that President Franklin D. Roosevelt made private ownership of our lawful money (US Minted Gold Coins) illegal. Shortly after the people turned in their $20 gold coins, the price was increased from $20 per ounce to $35 per ounce. Almost overnight F.D.R., the most popular president this century (elected 4 times) looted almost half of this nation's wealth, while convincing the people that it was for their own good. Many of F.D.R.'s policies were suggested by his right hand man, Harry Hopkins, who said, "Tax and Tax, Spend and Spend, Elect and Elect, because the people are too damn dumb to know the difference".
++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
 
And here's the nail in the coffin of those who praise democracy:
If one accepts that the Constitution is the Supreme Law(and Article 6 confirms this fact), then as the word "democracy" is NOT in the Constitution, it follows that America is NOT a democracy...and in fact, Art. 4 clause 4 specifies a Republican form of governance, and NO OTHER.  Those public servants are required to swear an oath of fealty to the Constitution, acknowledging thereby their INFERIORITY to it.
 
Now it's true that with the exception of the presidency, popular vote elects Representatives, but EVERY representative MUST swear an oath as a CONDITION OF EMPLOYMENT.  Just because no one has ever been so much as ARRESTED for their felony perjury Oath-breaking does not mean it must remain so forever.
 
Jefferson, i believe it was, wrote that "When the People fear the government, there is Tyranny; when the government fears the People, there is liberty."
They don't fear us.
That needs to change.
 
i'm fairly certain that if just THREE successful prosecutions and convictions of just ONE member of each branch of the federal government take place, the rest will sit up, take notice, and begi
FacePalm Added Nov 26, 2018 - 11:49pm
begin to obey the lawful restrictions they AGREED to by virtue of the Constitution whose principles and restrictions they swore to uphold and defend.
 
UNTIL THAT HAPPENS, though, "business will go on as usual," which means we'll continue to be screwed by "the system" which makes us worse than slaves - it makes us debtors, unable to escape our economic slavery via the FRN scheme.
Ryan Messano Added Nov 27, 2018 - 12:31am
You can't be free when you look at naked women who you aren't married to. When you get that straight, Facepalm, you'll be better able to discern problems and solutions.  That said, completely agree with your comment. Just curious why you often have an allergy to capitalizing the first letter of sentences?
Stone-Eater Added Nov 27, 2018 - 2:51am
We Swiss have a democracy that's about the closest to true democracy it can get. And since we have no president (we don't need one), we're not in danger to elect some weirdo into the highest post LOL
Stone-Eater Added Nov 27, 2018 - 2:52am
Btw George
 
Good one !
FacePalm Added Nov 27, 2018 - 3:13am
SE-
Do you consider the information in the following citation accurate, or not?
 
"Since independence in the fourteenth century, the Swiss have been required to keep and bear arms, and since 1515, have had a policy of armed neutrality. Its form of government is similar to the one set up by our Founders -- a weak central government exercising few, defined powers having to do mostly with external affairs and limited authority over internal matters at the canton (state) and local levels."
-- Benedict D. LaRosa, historian, author
Source: Gun Control: A Historical Perspective, The Tyranny of Gun Control, 49 (Future of Freedom Foundation 1997).
Stone-Eater Added Nov 27, 2018 - 4:45am
Face
 
That's correct.
FacePalm Added Nov 27, 2018 - 5:35am
Stone-
Thanks.
Then what you have is not a democracy, for in a democracy, the majority are NOT beholden to any Constitution or Rule of Law, but the majority vote decides EVERYthing.
 
For example, if you had a true democracy, a nationwide vote could take place tomorrow to force all immigrants to be slaves to whoever wanted one or more, and the immigrants would lose that vote.  Too bad for them, eh?
 
Also, if the majority decided that they wanted the Swiss Treasury to pay every Citizen of Switzerland 100,000 Swiss Francs (CHF), they could do so - which is, btw, one of the fatal flaws of democracy which Plato pointed out, that as soon as the Citizens discover they can vote themselves money from the government, they do, and so empty the treasury and destroy the country.
Stone-Eater Added Nov 27, 2018 - 6:12am
Face
 
We DO have votes on almost everything. For example that weekend people voted for or against the Swiss constitution overruling UN people's rights constitution.
 
Unfortunately people voted against it. The majority decides everything. But of course it has to be according to the constitution which is quite basic.
FacePalm Added Nov 27, 2018 - 6:49am
In America, rights secured by the Constitution cannot be voted on.
Does the Swiss Constitution name any Rights that Citizens enjoy which also cannot be voted on?
Bill Kamps Added Nov 27, 2018 - 7:13am
It is sort of a distinction without a difference, democracy or republic.  People say democracy, and often mean republic.   As has been pointed out, lots of places call themselves democracy, and almost all countries have some sort of vote.  Soviet Russia had a vote, and Cuba has always had a vote.  Having a vote for a president, or people in government isnt so much what matters.   Very few countries, like Saudi for example, dont have a vote for their leader. 
 
What keeps the  US from falling into the problems of Venezuela, Cuba,  Russia, or China?   It is not the vote, it is the Constitution, the rights guaranteed in the Constitution and the difficulty we have in changing it.  The last part being the most important.  What allows places like Turkey and Venezuela to change with the whims of their president? their constitution is easy to change.  The president simply  changes it or instructs lawmakers to change it.
 
In the case of China a simple vote of their lawmakers allowed Xi to rule indefinitely.  In the US changing the Constitution takes far more than a simple vote in Congress.  A two thirds majority in both houses of Congress, and a three fourths majority of the states have to pass an amendment.. These are very significant hurdles.
 
What allows Russia and China to run roughshod over the rights of their citizens?  While their constitutions give people rights similar to the US, they also have a clause that says these rights exist only when they are in concert with the priorities and preservation of the state.  Quite an asterisk, on their rights.   So people in China have freedom of speech unless it is deemed to be harming the state.   Not only is the right of free speech weak, the conditions where it can be taken away are arbitrary and case by case.  This is the same problem in Russia, not that they dont have rule of law, but they have arbitrary interpretation and enforcement of the law.   This is why our immigration policy is dangerous, because it almost mandates arbitrary interpretation and enforcement of the law, because the law is a mess. 
 
While the US has lots of problems, as any country does, what allows us to survive Presidents we dont agree with is the Constitution.  It is also the knowledge that once Trump or Obama serve at most their eight years in office, they will leave office without the need to call up the tanks.  This cant really be said about Putin, or Xi.   They simply change the rules so they can stay around longer.
George N Romey Added Nov 27, 2018 - 8:49am
The lack of mob rule has probably been the driver of keeping this country.  That and a general faith in government albeit this has been fading over the past 3 decades.
 
It would certainly appear to me that the Founding Fathers didn't want a Kingdom but didn't trust the "people" either.  They seem to be aiming for a group they thought smart and responsible enough to elect the right people.  Yes some people back then could read and write but the majority of Americans lived isolated on farms with limited reading and comprehension skills.  Specifically those that didn't own land.  Remember many white farm workers were only a few notches above the slaves. 
 
Ultimately a Republic is dependent upon the faith in elected officials.  True Democracy for a country the size, scope and diversity of the US would probably spell doom.  Holding 50 states together has never proved to be an easy task.
rycK the JFK Democrat Added Nov 27, 2018 - 8:50am
"The only issue is that the US has never been a true Democracy and was never intended to be a true Democracy."
 
Can you find this key word in our founding documents? No??
 
Why not?
Stone-Eater Added Nov 27, 2018 - 8:51am
Face
 
Basic human rights can't be voted on. But our votes can delete or create stuff in our constitution. However we care less about the constitution and more about things influencing daily life. When we were asked "do you want to join the EU?" we said no. In all other European countries parlaments decide about such things, not the people.
Bill Kamps Added Nov 27, 2018 - 8:53am
I think what has gotten us into some trouble is that originally most of the governing was left to the states.  There is some wisdom in this, because people within a state are more likely to agree on policy, than people across a large number of states.  The states disagreed greatly during the negotiations for a constitution in the 1700s.  They disagree greatly now.  With a large Federal government now, we are trying to have more one size fits all laws, and that is causing some of the rift we see.
Dino Manalis Added Nov 27, 2018 - 9:08am
 Democracy isn't anarchy, it's based on laws; values; and a constitution.  Democracy is an ideal, but people often  abuse it with fallacies.
Bill Kamps Added Nov 27, 2018 - 9:16am
In all other European countries parlaments decide about such things, not the people.
 
In the UK the people voted on the Brexit.  This has created a mess because it is pretty obvious that they didnt understand the ramifications of what they voted on.  Even Trump, with all his problems and emotionalism, did a better job redoing NAFTA than the Brexit has become.  No way the people of the US could have agreed on the terms of NAFTA. 
 
Now granted, far easier from an implementation point of view, for the Swiss to have stayed out in the first place, than to separate after being part of the EU for many years as the UK is now trying to do.
FacePalm Added Nov 27, 2018 - 10:34am
Teresa May has created the mess; she and her supporters don't want to bow to the wishes of the voters, and she recently came up with a "plan" which essentially makes the UK unrepresented vassals to the unelected-therefore-accountable-to-no-one EU gov't in Brussels.
This idiotic position has likely sounded the death-knell to her Prime Ministerial post unless she does a quick about-face, which i don't think she's capable of.
 
Nevertheless, these united States have a Constitutional Republic, and NOT a democracy, despite the MSM talking heads who continually promote the Big Lie like good little obedient Goebbel-lite Nazis, who repeat the lie often enough to deceive people into believing it's the truth.
 
BTW, do you remember how Hitler ties his shoes?
Vy, mit lots of little Nazis.
Bill Kamps Added Nov 27, 2018 - 10:39am
FP, I would agree what TM is proposing is probably the worst of the possible solutions. 
FacePalm Added Nov 27, 2018 - 11:42am
Based on her actions and statements, Bill, i strongly suspect that she's being coached/ordered to do/say this or that.  In any case, she either didn't care what the voters wanted, or is afraid of her "handlers;" either way, i'm glad that Britons are finally standing up somewhat to tyranny.  It is also my sincere hope that they get their ARMS back, for in a just society, little old ladies should be able to defend themselves with weaponry capable of taking out a 200lb+ rapist...then, too, there's this:
 
"That rifle hanging on the wall of the working-class flat or labourer's cottage is the symbol of democracy.  It is our job to see that it stays there."
-- George Orwell[Eric Arthur Blair] (1903-1950) British author
Source: Orwell: The Authorized Biography, Michael Shelden, (New York:
HarperCollins Publishers, 1991), p. 328
 
Oops!  Someone fell down on the job, it appears...
rycK the JFK Democrat Added Nov 27, 2018 - 11:57am
FacePalm
 
"Teresa May has created the mess; she and her supporters don't want to bow to the wishes of the voters, and she recently came up with a "plan" which essentially makes the UK unrepresented vassals to the unelected-therefore-accountable-to-no-one EU gov't in Brussels.
This idiotic position has likely sounded the death-knell to her Prime Ministerial post unless she does a quick about-face, which i don't think she's capable of."
 
Agree. But, there is much hidden in documents and proposals that we have not been privy to. 
 
Brexit deal explained: backstops, trade and citizens' rights--https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2018/nov/25/may-brexit-deal-explained-eu-withdrawal-agreement-trade-backstop-citizens-rights
 
If we can trust the left wing Guardian:
 
[1]"There is a 585-page withdrawal agreement"
 
[2] "the problem of avoiding a border on the island of Ireland after Brexit."
 
[3] "All those arriving to live in the UK at any point up until the end of the transition period, which could last until the end of 2022 should it be extended, will enjoy the rights that EU nationals have today to make Britain their home, to live, work and study."
 
Thus, they can mooch off of the UK as illegals do in California.
 
[4] "The UK has agreed a joint paper of just 26 pages outlining the parameters of the future relationship, with the two main pillars being trade and security. The paper offers lots of ideas about what might happen, but few concrete plans."
 
Mindless blather leaving the EU in charge. 
 
[5] "The prime minister’s central policy priority in terms of trade was to secure a commitment to frictionless trade in goods through a common rulebook, the centrepiece of the Chequers plan. "
 
"The UK, bafflingly, insists this does not bind the British government to a customs union. Despite British demands for a bespoke deal on financial services, the UK will be treated like any other non-EU country. Instead of “passports” that allow the City of London to operate across the EU, bankers and traders will have to rely on “equivalence”, allowing market access to be withdrawn by Brussels at 30 days’ notice. There is a commitment to complete equivalence assessments by the middle of June 2020."
 
This apparently lets Brussels raid and cherry pick London financial assets at will. 
 
The EU cannot be trusted. 
 
 
 
 
 
 
FacePalm Added Nov 27, 2018 - 12:19pm
Absolutely, the EU cannot be trusted.
Did you know that an EU was actually the plan of Hitler?
Almost all people in leadership positions are figureheads, shills, puppets; it is those usually-wealthy entities which pull the strings, and this has been well-known for quite some time:
 
"The world is governed by very different personages from what is imagined by those who are not behind the scenes."
- Benjamin Disraeli, first Prime Minister of England, in a novel he published in 1844 called Coningsby, the New Generation
 
"The governments of the present day have to deal not merely with other governments, with emperors, kings and ministers, but also with the secret societies which have everywhere their unscrupulous agents, and can at the last moment upset all the governments' plans."
- British Prime Minister Benjamin Disraeli, 1876
Liberal1 Added Nov 27, 2018 - 12:56pm
I admit that I'm not well versed on the difference between Democracies and Republics, so I won't comment regarding that (unlike people like the Cowardly Ryan who doesn't understand them, but blabbers on and on).  I am appreciating reading you post and subsequent comments, though, so thank you George.
 
What I will comment on though is:
"Supposedly, our Founding Fathers saw politics as a short term gig for those that were accomplished and felt the need to give back to society. "
 
 IF ONLY!  I personally think that a 1 or 2 term limit would cure a lot of the political BS we see in Washington.  The current politicians, some having been in place currying favors for decades, have little or no cares about the desires of their constituents, unless they "buy" them with a big contribution. 
 
Not allowing politicians to become so entrenched and take the money out of being a "career" politician would fix most of the crap we are now seeing.
opher goodwin Added Nov 27, 2018 - 12:59pm
George -Don't they call that representative democracy? A republic just means that you have a president instead of a monarch. You still have one man one vote and vote for your representatives. It's no different to the UK is it?
George N Romey Added Nov 27, 2018 - 1:05pm
We should consider that our Founding Fathers were not politicians.  Yes some ultimately served in government but had other endeavors.  While they were a bunch of rich elite white dudes clearly they'd hated "biggness" and were leery of corporations.
 
One vote one man doesn't translate into the wishes of the people being honored.  Even issues with huge solid majority support often get ignored by elected representatives or voted down.  The idea that you are sending someone to Washington DC to respect your wishes, unless you have the ability to write large campaign contribution checks in laughable.  Even Trump pointed that one out.
rycK the JFK Democrat Added Nov 27, 2018 - 2:52pm
Troll  without cognitive portfolio.
George N Romey Added Nov 27, 2018 - 2:56pm
I see that Mogg "Turd" is nothing more than a pathetic troll like Mika. Supposedly everyone on this site is well below is intellect and style.  Yet somehow he never seems to leave and find people more on what he considers his higher level.  He even writes like Mika-big letters, bold print.  Wow, I'm impressed.
rycK the JFK Democrat Added Nov 27, 2018 - 3:41pm
So are the rest of us.
FacePalm Added Nov 27, 2018 - 11:21pm
Not me.  i pegged him as a pretentious, arrogant, haughty, name-calling hypocrite within a day of his initial post.
 
His pretense to being a christian is belied by his ignorance of the application of Christ's principles and commands.
 
But you know, Christ's words are going to live forever: what one sows, that they also reap; what we give is what we get; the measure we mete to "others" is exactly what will be measured back to us, and so on.
 
Unless he changes his mind, and soon, he'll have occasion to deeply regret how he's treated "others."
Minister Peaceful Poet Added Nov 28, 2018 - 2:08am
Democracy cannot be the answer because sometimes the crowd is wrong - if we followed the crowd we would be burning witches again.  
Stone-Eater Added Nov 28, 2018 - 2:23am
Bill
 
I'm glad we stayed out of the EU too. You're right.
Stone-Eater Added Nov 28, 2018 - 2:23am
Frogg
 
Think that's funny ? Go play in the back yard.
Dale Ruff Added Nov 28, 2018 - 3:06am
The US  is an oligarchy,  ruled by the rich or those they hire to  run things for them.   
Our founding document, the Declaration of Independence, in fact founded the new nation on democratic principle of equality and consent of the governred, but the Founding Fathers who wrote the Constitution, over a decade later, were a very different group.  
 
Jefferson, Paine, and Adams, the key figures of the Declaration, were not there.  and the 2nd group of FF were half slave owners, land speculators, war profiteer,and even some who had opposed independence.   They  betrayed our founding principles and set up a system, which embraced slavery, created a very misrepresentative Senate voting scheme, and devised the Electoral College in order to be able to overturn the voice of the people, or the consent of the governed.
 
So the US was originally founded on democratic principles but the Constitution was a counter-revolution, intended to enable the distinct minority of slave owners to control the new nation (tho a minority, 10 of the first 12 Presidents had owned slaves), and thus the Constitution reversed our founding principles to create an oligarchy of slave owners.
 
The first President, in an electorate that banned native Americans, blacks, women, and most  men who did not qualify for lack of property. got 43,000 votes, out of a population of 3 million.  He was the largest slave owner and richest man.  As the First Chief Justice (and slave owner and Founding Father) John Jay said:  "The country should be run by those who own it."
 
Then came Jefferson, who had written the Declaration, under the inspiration of Tom Paine, the only true democrat of the lot,  who owned more than 200 slaves. Then came 8 more slave owners.   
 
When slavery was abolished, the slave owners oligarchy was replaced by the oligarchy of bankers and  corporate  tycoons....and this continues to this day.
 
So we are not a democracy, except perhaps on the local level, but we were born on democratic principles, which were quickly  replaced with a system that  enables a minority of the rich to run the country.
 
To this, I say:  democracy is our birthright, stolen from us in our youth, and so it is time to complete the American Revolution and not  allow  the hereditary aristocracy which the Revolution overthrew  continue to be  dominated by the "moneyed aristocracy" that Jefferson said would steal us blind.  And they have.
  
opher goodwin Added Nov 28, 2018 - 6:35am
Ha Mogg - yes I dropped it on yours. Sorry about that. I hope it didn't cause permanent damage? At least it was in a good cause - it broke the fall!
opher goodwin Added Nov 28, 2018 - 6:38am
MPP - and having public torturing and lynchings.
FacePalm Added Nov 28, 2018 - 7:48am
Dale Ruff-
Do you acknowledge that the Constitution is the Supreme Law of the Land?
George N Romey Added Nov 28, 2018 - 8:18am
Much of what Dale Ruff writes is true.  We've always had a plutocrat crowd trying to run the country.  At times they've been somewhat beat back put then return in a new form.  In the end they are the same greedy evil believing the entire pie is their's for the taking.  
wsucram15 Added Nov 28, 2018 - 9:55am
George..it has always been that way, its just in the open now. 
Who is this Mogg person?
 
The Constitution is what most people adhere to or hold onto.   We are a Representative democracy. Which means we do lawmaking directly at state and local levels by majority vote. The US is also a Constitutional Republic limiting the democratic will of "the people" by the courts on a federal level.  
 
Its really both..but the framers in the federalist papers used the term "representative democracy" as opposed to "pure democracy". (#10)  Multiple framers have used those terms but  Jefferson and Adams spring to mind.  Along with James Wilson (drafter of Constitution AND SC justice) and Chief Justice John Marshall.
 
On another note, not too many other countries in the world are truly democratic.  The UK operates under civil law which is Parliament and a monarch and a head of state. Similar and a democracy but not the same.  I think most countries are a little bit of a mix.
 
SEF..Switzerland is far too advanced for most countries to follow as far as your democracy. Same with Sweden I am told.  I thought Australia was a decent democracy.  I dont know I have never been, however.
Bob Added Nov 28, 2018 - 10:01am
Dale is correct. The federal and state levels are merely levers for the wealthy and corporations to exorcise their powers for their benefit at the expense of the laborers. The closest form of true democracy is at the municipal level usually through the town meeting form of government.
 
In my local case we have the town manager system. The people elect a 5-person board, the board hires a town manager with a set contract and salary, and the town manager proposes the annual budget, deals with the day to day dealings with the public, and municipal personnel related duties.
 
Town managers often attend political self-serving career activities, travel to conventions (on the clock) thousands of miles away at the expense of the towns people, all while earning an obscene salary, whilst doing very little actual work because they "delegate" to department heads. The town manager's only real duty is to propose a budget that is voted on by all attending members of the town at the town meeting. Everyone in the room has an opportunity to speak on any article that is on the town meeting warrant, and any specific expense voted down is either eliminated or reduced in funding and proposed again at a different date.
 
A representative republic is what the USA is purported to have, but it is just a form of inverted totalitarianism run by corporations, banks, and billionaires. There is plenty of socialism in the USA. This socialism isn't in the form of food stamps, subsidized housing, or healthcare for the general populace. Instead, it is socialism for corporations and billionaires. These entities own politicians who give them massive tax breaks, provide loopholes to escape taxation responsibilities, and can provide unlimited funding to campaigns. This form of legalized bribery essentially creates a single party system to ensure the corporate powers continue to make obscene profits off the backs of their employees and the working class. The media (corporate owned) then pits the poor against the poorer. These entities escape any responsibility due to the credulous cretins (who vote) that watch MSNBC, CNN, and FOX news without a single brain cell to criticize the scat spewed through the screen. 
 
The pie in the sky" democracy" people speak of is what is referred to as a direct democracy. In these systems the people have a say/vote in almost all legislative and executive decisions. Essentially, every person may vote on a bill or initiate legislation without the need for a legislature. Of course, this is ineffective due to ballot counts, an uneducated voting population, and the fact that war would be near impossible because people don't vote to send their children or themselves to their death. Hence, the need for a caste system that allows the elite to convince the populations of the world to kill each other off (population control) a few times a century. 
 
Maine and other states have referendum ballots in which individuals may have certain legislation placed on a ballot through a signature gathering process and if successful these proposals are voted on by the state voting population. If the referendum is approved by the people, the details and implementation of the policies are hashed out in the state legislature. A few examples are infrastructure bonds, marijuana legalization, and raising the drinking or smoking age. 
 
Government is never what it claims to be or does what it's supposed to do. 
rycK the JFK Democrat Added Nov 28, 2018 - 11:03am
Dale Ruff
 
"The US  is an oligarchy,  ruled by the rich or those they hire to  run things for them. "
 
This is a fact in nearly every nation or region in the world. You do not have empires or major societies run by the poor or those that lack power. 
 
We have something like a plutocratic republic not a democracy where the average person can make policy. 
Jim Stoner Added Nov 28, 2018 - 12:06pm
I have to agree with ryck:  the US is a plutocratic republic; however, this is not a permanently settled fact.  There are true democratic impulses in much of the population, which should be honored.  I'll go with Lincoln's formulation of what this nation is about: "of the people, by the people, for the people".  It's a work in (hopefully) progress. 
rycK the JFK Democrat Added Nov 28, 2018 - 2:16pm
Jim Stoner
 
I agree with Jim Stoner to the point where, in the future, other empires rise based on something other than capitalism, if ever. We have some 5000 years of capitalism driving growth and power. Capitalism appears to be a basic human goal. 
 
I cannot fully abide by Lincoln's formulation since it appears to say that the masses are somehow ultimately in control, a view that cannot be justified by history. The masses have an indirect effect in Eric Hoffer's views that 'leaders' who finally assume powers do not initiate the movements but seem to fall in front of that force and are pushed into the leadership position. The movement was already building and somebody became a necessary focus point. This view appears to explain the rise of Mao, Lenin, Hitler and all the others. The masses were already frustrated and ready for change in all three cases. FDR fits in here readily. So does Donald Trump.
 
But I fully agree that it is a work in progress [our current system] and may be improved provided those who oppose growth and advances in society, a huge group, lose power or effectiveness. But the forces that might even tolerate human freedom are few and the forces that might control all persons within their grasp are many: Islam, communism, and whatever is happening in California. 
Qasim Raza Added Nov 28, 2018 - 3:08pm
Lack of objectivity is the main issue in Democracy...
rycK the JFK Democrat Added Nov 28, 2018 - 5:17pm
We are very objective about the enemies if Democracy.
rycK the JFK Democrat Added Nov 28, 2018 - 5:19pm
 
'Seems to me like the rest of the world does pretty OK by this oligarchy."
 
Agreed, and always had. The alternative is poverty and starvation.
 
 
 
 
Bill Added Nov 28, 2018 - 5:57pm
@George N Romey
 
"While no one knows exactly what our Founding Fathers believed their experiment while successful hasn't been the panacea it was might have thought to be."
 
They didn't expect it to last more than 50 years.  They said so.
 
"Conservatives like to claim our Founding Fathers wanted small government.  However, by setting up a Republic whether by design or not they laid the foundation for big government."
 
Rubbish.  They expressly intended for the FEDERAL government to remain small, and forced it to remain small until the 16th removed the constraints upon taxation and the Federal Reserve replaced what is still our only Constitutionally authorized money (silver coin) with fiat currency they can print at will, and a money mill against which they can "borrow" so we can pay tribute to the global banking cartel and others who wish us will.  None of this is new nor secret. 
 
The sovereign States were intended to remain free to experiment with larger or smaller government as they wished; the Constitutional guarantee of an unlimited right to unrestricted travel between the States meant people could "vote" for the State of their choice with their feet.  The prerogatives of the States were preserved by the Senate (representing the States, not the people directly) until the 17th, when they became just another gaggle of hounds offering free stuff to everyone to get elected.
 
It all worked quite well until 1913, when Woodrow Wilson declared the 16th and 17th to be ratified and created the next in a line of experiments with a central bank, which became the Fed.
 
"Ultimately our Founding Fathers were victims of the ignorance of their times."
 
Axiomatically there must be some truth to this as for everyone in every era.  However, the nature of people has not changed at any time in the 10,000 years of human history - and I would strongly suspect that any of our founders were better educated in the ways of human behavior as regards the creation of an ideal State than any of the short sighted cretins infesting the halls of Congress today.
 
There is not much truly "wrong" with our country today which could not be fixed by a) balancing the budget and b) adherence to the rule of law and our Constitution.  Life is never perfect, and there probably cannot be such a thing so long as any two individuals can hold differing opinions.  A government which protects us first from government excess; second from foreign domination; and third promotes the General Welfare in the sense the founders meant (to maximize opportunity and free commerce) is historically an excellent government, and not one to be lightly overturned.
Cullen Kehoe Added Nov 28, 2018 - 7:17pm
The majority of presidents up to the Civil War were all (slave-holding) Southerners. 
George N Romey Added Nov 29, 2018 - 7:58am
Bob our Founding Fathers didn't want big government.  However, they could have never imagined the complexities of a 1900 society and the problems that result leave alone a post 2000 world.  By having a Republic we dump those problems at the door of our elected officials to try to figure out.
 
No surprise we've gotten political corruption and money peddling influence beyond imagination.  And from that an income tax, a private central bank, an illegal, immoral and deceptive private banking system, empire building, military hegemony, pay to play and all the rest.
 
Way back in 2001 the Pentagon was called before Congress to account for a missing $2.3 trillion.  It couldn't.  Common sense would say that number has probably swelled several times over since 2001.  We've dumped over $6 trillion in the Middle East with nothing to show for it.  All of that probably correlates into the national debt that has grown since 2001.  Not one American voted on how that money was to be spent.  We handed that task over to our elected leaders and you see what's happened.
rycK the JFK Democrat Added Nov 29, 2018 - 9:38am
George
 
" We handed that task over to our elected leaders and you see what's happened."
 
I agree. We need minimal tax levels and few regulations on business and we need to dump EPA, parts of FBI, most of DOT, all of D.Ed and some more. We should sell off the USPO as these bozos cannot make money in any form and have not for decades. 
 
Socialism is a failure. 
rycK the JFK Democrat Added Nov 29, 2018 - 9:50am
Bill
 
"Rubbish.  They expressly intended for the FEDERAL government to remain small, and forced it to remain small until the 16th removed the constraints upon taxation and the Federal Reserve replaced what is still our only Constitutionally authorized money (silver coin) with fiat currency they can print at will, and a money mill against which they can "borrow" so we can pay tribute to the global banking cartel and others who wish us will.  None of this is new nor secret. "
 
Full agreement here with the added comment that Wilson set up the Fed to provide monies for WW1, a place where we had no truck but a place where Wilson's comment:  "He kept us out of war" was a sick joke. 160,000 dead.
 
In 1919 he came back from his European Follies with a mandate to rule Turkey and Congress laughed so hard he had a stroke  and the left side of his face was frozen, the proper side we can state. 
 
Sometimes pigs can fly.
FacePalm Added Nov 29, 2018 - 10:09am
Let me prove - in their own words - why the founders despised democracy, and why the US is a Constitutional Republic:
 
"Democracies have ever been spectacles of turbulence and contention; have ever been found incompatible with personal security or the rights of property; and have in general been as short in their lives as they have been violent in their deaths...,
We may define a republic to be ... a government which derives all its powers directly or indirectly from the great body of the people, and is administered by persons holding their offices during pleasure for a limited period, or during good behavior. It is essential to such a government that it be derived from the great body of the society, not from an inconsiderable proportion or a favored class of it; otherwise a handful of tyrannical nobles, exercising their oppressions by a delegation of their powers, might aspire to the rank of republicans and claim for their government the honorable title of republic."
~James Madison, Federalist No. 10, (1787)
 
"Remember, democracy never lasts long.  It soon wastes, exhausts, and murders itself.
There never was a democracy yet that did not commit suicide.":
John Adams(1735-1826) Founding Father, 2nd US President
Source: letter to John Taylor, April 15, 1814
 
"No good government but what is republican...the very definition of a republic is
'an empire of laws, and not of men.'"
John Adams(1735-1826) Founding Father, 2nd US President
Source: "Thoughts on Government" January, 1776
 
"...[O]ur sages in the great [constitutional] convention...intended our government should be a republic which differs more widely from a democracy than a democracy from a despotism.  The rigours of a despotism often... oppress only a few, but it is the very essence and nature of a democracy, for a faction claiming to oppress a minority, and
that minority the chief owners of the property and truest lovers of their country."
Fisher Ames(1758-1808), American statesman, orator and political writer
Source: 1805
 
"Liberty has never lasted long in a democracy, nor has it ever ended in anything better than despotism."
Fisher Ames(1758-1808), American statesman, orator and political writer
 
"[W]e are confirmed in the opinion, that the present age would be deficient in their duty to God, their posterity and themselves, if they do not establish an American republic.  This is the only form of government we wish to see established; for we can never be willingly subject to any other King than He who, being possessed of infinite wisdom, goodness and rectitude, is alone fit to possess unlimited power."
Instructions of Malden, Massachusetts for a Declaration of Independence, 27 May 1776 Reference: Documents of American History, Commager, vol. 1 (97)
 
"All communities divide themselves into the few and the many.  The first are the rich and the well-born; the other the mass of the people ... turbulent and changing, they seldom judge or determine right.  Give therefore to the first class a distinct, permanent share in the Government ...Nothing but a permanent body can check the imprudence of democracy."
-- Alexander Hamilton(1757-1804)
Source: speech to the Constitutional Convention concerning the United States Senate, 06/18/1787, quoted in the notes of Judge Yates

i have many more, as well - from as ancient of times as those of Aristotle and Plato, up into the 1990s, who all affirm that democracy sucks ass, though far more eruditely expressed.
 
As explained earlier, the ONLY element of democracy that we have in America is to vote for those who we think will best represent us and our interests.  Unfortunately, most do not think to inquire of their would-be representatives if they intend to be bound by the restrictions placed on the powers they might lawfully exercise by virtue of the Oaths of Office they're required to swear as a CONDITION of taking office...or perhaps more importantly, if they think that those who VIOLATE that Oath should be prosecuted for felony perjury, just like those who get caught lying in courtrooms.
George N Romey Added Nov 29, 2018 - 11:55am
The USPO isn't the problem. Its the ancient laws that allow Congress to rule its operations.  Could you imagine if a business had to run to Congress all the time for things like price increases and expansion of product offerings?  You'd get companies as financially f'd up as the USPO.  In fact the quality of the USPO is quite amazing when you think about it.  However, when they have to operate like its 1965 of course losses are going to occur. 
 
Nixon going off the gold standard in 1971 is what opened the flood gates for never ending government spending and gross inefficiencies.  Like the trillions missing at the Pentagon and no one in jail.  Wilson set the stage being a dupe of the Ivy League bankers.  Like Obama he loved being identified as a so call "intellect." 
rycK the JFK Democrat Added Nov 29, 2018 - 2:22pm
FacePalm
 
""Democracies have ever been spectacles of turbulence and contention; have ever been found incompatible with personal security or the rights of property; and have in general been as short in their lives as they have been violent in their deaths..."---- Alexander Hamilton(1757-1804)
 
This is very true from the moment it was instituted in Athens about 500 BCE. It is of interest to ask: how many learned social scientists and politicians preferred democratic systems since the Greeks?
 
From the list: Hobbs, Locke, Bacon, Smith, Franklin, Voltaire, J. J. Rousseau and many others before the US Revolution--all were against democracies or stayed silent on the issue. 
 
The unspoken truisms was: NEVER let the low class vote!
rycK the JFK Democrat Added Nov 29, 2018 - 2:28pm
George N Romney
 
"Wilson set the stage being a dupe of the Ivy League bankers.  Like Obama he loved being identified as a so call "intellect." "
 
Agreement here. He was also an early progressive wanting government control of anything and everything it could manage. Wilson was the only intellectual in that short group as he was president of Princeton while Obama had no accolades except two books with his name on them apparently written by two different people.
 
"Nixon going off the gold standard in 1971"
 
Nixon was forced to dump the Bretton Woods agreement since inflation was high enough that people were traded paper for metal, a fatal end to metal backed currencies. France threatened to convert their entire dollar holdings to gold. 
 
Fiat currencies cannot be backed by anything but blather. 
George N Romey Added Nov 29, 2018 - 2:48pm
Yes France actually sent a ship for their gold.  
Ryan Messano Added Nov 29, 2018 - 2:51pm
Facepalm shows it’s possible to understand the Founders, but be a sorry lukewarm Christian at the same time. Weak, pathetic men like him with zero standards who bleat about love all the time are heaping up wrath for themselves.
Living in a fairytale world.
Hey Facepalm, go research Eli and Phinehas.
God destroyed Eli for taking your approach to sin. He rewarded Phinehas for taking mine. Maybe study your Bible sometime.
FacePalm Added Nov 29, 2018 - 4:15pm
rycK-
This is very true from the moment it was instituted in Athens about 500 BCE. It is of interest to ask: how many learned social scientists and politicians preferred democratic systems since the Greeks?
 
From the list: Hobbs, Locke, Bacon, Smith, Franklin, Voltaire, J. J. Rousseau and many others before the US Revolution--all were against democracies or stayed silent on the issue. 
 
Perhaps incuriously, i've observed that those whom history considers wise are also quite well-read, and therefore capable of critical thinking.
 
The unspoken truism was: NEVER let the low class vote!
Ay, there's the rub; who decides that another is "low class," and doesn't the very act of making that judgment make the judging low class, in and of itself?
 
That said, i AM in favor of everyone taking direct subsidies(other than social security) being unable to vote until they get off it, and that counseling should be provided to help them exit the state of dependency and childhood.  As long as they remain in the state of the "Id" - the "gimme-gimme" stage - they should not be allowed to vote for who they think will be their best Santa Claus.
 
"The American Republic will endure, until politicians realize they can bribe the people with their own money."
-- Alexis de Tocqueville[Alexis Charles Henri Maurice Clerel, le Comte de Tocqueville] (1805-1859) French historian
ChetDude Added Nov 29, 2018 - 4:29pm
I'm very grateful for good ole' Ryan Messano's knuckle-dragging christianist infused posts...
 
If he weren't here to act as a deterrent against his corrosive "philosophy" infecting otherwise rational, humane, compassionate folks, we'd have to invent him.
 
Thanks, Ryan!
FacePalm Added Nov 29, 2018 - 5:04pm
ChetDude-
From my observation, he may indeed be a "christian," but he's no disciple of Christ, who said "Why do you call Me 'Lord, lord' but do not do what i tell you?"
 
Note: He did NOT say "do what Paul tells you," or "Moses" or anyone else, prophet to predator.
 
The very meaning of the word "gospel" is belied by the meanspiritedness of nearly every post he makes.
Stone-Eater Added Nov 30, 2018 - 8:26am
Face
 
The US probably doesn't need a democracy since it's so fond of its founders of long ago. If you're happy with your system, keep it.
 
Main thing is that the US doesn't try to force its whatever ideals to others.
rycK the JFK Democrat Added Nov 30, 2018 - 10:54am
FacePalm
 
"Perhaps incuriously, i've observed that those whom history considers wise are also quite well-read, and therefore capable of critical thinking.
 
The unspoken truism was: NEVER let the low class vote!
Ay, there's the rub; who decides that another is "low class," and doesn't the very act of making that judgment make the judging low class, in and of itself?"
 
We can borrow a definition from the English about the time of  reformation efforts [Wesley] and included as members or candidates: thieves, murderers, hookers, smugglers, those with infectious diseases, debtors and those spying on the Brits and similar actions. 
 
This 'set of rules of conduct' was formulated into law  by Parliament and was legal and supported by  the House of Lords.  To ignore such types is to enjoy or embrace the kind of society they have in Brasil or Mexico  have today. 
 
Would we have illegal aliens vote as soon as they step on our soil? That would please the left immensely. 
 
The citizens that were "quite well-read, and therefore capable of critical thinking" structured laws in England and also started up the French Revolution where the 'rights' of the 'low classes' were fixed by the Assembly , composed 80% of leftist  lawyers. This did not end well. 
 
An 'education' is essentially worthless to the society if  it points to ruinous taxes, voting rights for criminals,  confiscation of assets, economic depressions, mass unemployment and brief trips to the guillotine to join heads in the basket with your peers. 
 
We could accept the combined educational assets of the judges on the 9th Circuit Court and extrapolate that for the entire country given that their 'rulings' have been reversed some %80 of the time? This court exhibits 'critical thinking' or do they just  follow the leftist dogmas as lackeys?
 
Was Hanoi Hannah [ a person who I listened to for more than a year in VN] 'educated" in the  usual  liberals sense as her rich father paid for expensive tutors?  She was an expert cadre in political matters [showing extensive political training] and made few mistakes in her radio  deliveries in my view. I never heard her comments labeled as lies by some 200 who listened to her around the Mekong River, something I cannot say for liberals. 
 
We can never assume that we can have a homogeneous society sans crimes and such and allow the  citizens to do whatever they want willy-nilly. That leads to societies like California and sects like Jim Jones, the Snake Charmers, Comet Chasers, members of the Cosa Nostra,  MS-13 or North Korea or Cuba. 
 
Education may be likened to a fresh cow pie as it cools off, steams less and finally dries hard and ugly.
rycK the JFK Democrat Added Nov 30, 2018 - 10:57am
Stone-Eater
 
'Main thing is that the US doesn't try to force its whatever ideals to others."
 
Like the USSR, British Empire, EPA, 9th Circuit Court, welfare rights organizations, Islam, anarchists?
 
The world has only those who demand to  dictate the actions of others. 
 
Dale Ruff Added Nov 30, 2018 - 11:11am
"
In fact, the Supreme Court reversed about 70 percent of cases it took between 2010-15. Among cases it reviewed from the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals, it reversed about 79 percent.
The 9th Circuit’s reversal rate is higher than average, but it’s not the absolute highest among the circuit courts. That distinction goes to the 6th Circuit, which serves Ohio, Michigan, Kentucky and Tennessee, with an 87 percent average between 2010-15.  The 9th Circuit is in third place."
 
This is because the Supreme Court is the most partisan of all the courts with a  majority of far right Justices and a history of judicial activism  hiding behind the hypocrisy of "original intent."
 
Jefferson wrote that without democracy (ie leaders who win elections and thus have consent of the governed), we end up with tyrants, illegitimate and unjust, the very reason given to justify the American Revolution.   Sadly the Constitution, written by a very different group of men,  overturned the democratic principles of equality and consent (a good definition of democracy) with the 3/5 slave rule for representation the  misrepresentative  Senate voting scheme (Democrats just got 8 million more votes for Senators in the midterm but lost seats) and the anti-democratic  Electoral College, devised by slave owners to ensure their own control of the new nation, and responsible for giving us 2 illegitimate  rulers in this new Century, both of whom governed without consent of the governed and both of whom have been catastrophes.  As Jefferson wrote, those who rule without proper consent lacking the tailwind of popular support, must rule with lies, threats, and violence, leading to what he called "military despotism," which we may observe today at the US  border with armed troops  confronted  people seeking protection which is their right under US law (Code 1158) and ratified international law, both being the supreme law of the land the President has a duty to faithfully execute.
rycK the JFK Democrat Added Nov 30, 2018 - 11:20am
Dale Ruff
 
"This is because the Supreme Court is the most partisan of all the courts with a  majority of far right Justices and a history of judicial activism  hiding behind the hypocrisy of "original intent.""
 
Current tense limited here? Really, and how long has  that been? Do you recall the Warren Court? Did they have "a  majority of far LEFT wing Justices and a history of judicial activism ?
 
"which we may observe today at the US  border with armed troops  confronted  people seeking protection which is their right under US law (Code 1158) and ratified international law, both being the supreme law of the land the President has a duty to faithfully execute."
 
So Trump should let aliens in? 
 
8 U.S. Code § 1325 - Improper entry by alien
US Code
 
(a) Improper time or place; avoidance of examination or inspection; misrepresentation and concealment of facts
 
Any alien who (1) enters or attempts to enter the United States at any time or place other than as designated by immigration officers, or (2) eludes examination or inspection by immigration officers, or (3) attempts to enter or obtains entry to the United States by a willfully false or misleading representation or the willful concealment of a material fact, shall, for the first commission of any such offense, be fined under title 18 or imprisoned not more than 6 months, or both, and, for a subsequent commission of any such offense, be fined under title 18, or imprisoned not more than 2 years, or both.
 
(b) Improper time or place; civil penalties Any alien who is apprehended while entering (or attempting to enter) the United States at a time or place other than as designated by immigration officers shall be subject to a civil penalty of—
(1) at least $50 and not more than $250 for each such entry (or attempted entry); or
(2) twice the amount specified in paragraph (1) in the case of an alien who has been previously subject to a civil penalty under this subsection.
 
 
This is the law There are several more
 
 
 
 
 
 
FacePalm Added Nov 30, 2018 - 12:46pm
Dale-
Jefferson wrote that without democracy (ie leaders who win elections and thus have consent of the governed), we end up with tyrants, illegitimate and unjust, the very reason given to justify the American Revolution.
 
Hmm.  Did you miss where i proved that the Founders were quite clear, both about how they felt concerning 'democracy,' as well as a Constitutional Republic?
 
Now, it appears your claim is that Jefferson was pro-democracy; would you like to find the exact quote you appear to be referencing and post it?  Here's what HE has to say about it:
 
“A democracy is nothing more than mob rule, where fifty-one percent of the people may take away the rights of the other forty-nine.”
~ Thomas Jefferson(1743-1826), US Founding Father, drafted the Declaration of Independence, 3rd US President
 
...which, i may note, is perfectly consistent with the Founders who were cited earlier.
 
If you've never read Plato's "The Republic," you should; all the Founders had, which is why they despised democracy...for Plato exposed all of democracy's fatal flaws.
 
Now, they LIKED Rome's original Republic, but they were aware of it's flaws, as well, sought to improve upon it by creating a Constitution which did NOT rely on the nobility of prospective office-holders, but of their venality and jealousy of powers in order to create a balance, and a check, upon any excesses by any of the other two.
 
Remember, when planning for posterity, that virtue is not genetic; each generation must learn it's value and practice it to see it's superiority to it's opposite.  There is but little virtue in the opinions of masses of men, and a tyranny of a majority is still a tyranny.  The Constitution exists in order to guard against the oppression of any minority by the majority...which is exactly what democracy does, when not limited by the Rule of Law.
Jim Stoner Added Dec 1, 2018 - 1:40am
We all had to read too much Plato and Aristotle, and we are all too aware that our Founders didn't trust most American citizens to participate in the government they set up.  That's why latter-day Americans have needed to amend the Constitution. 
 
As for virtue, I don't see the virtue in this rule of the minority which has allowed an oligarchic class of plutocrats to purchase this government.  (I except the new House of Representatives).  
rycK the JFK Democrat Added Dec 1, 2018 - 2:37pm
FacePalm
 
"“A democracy is nothing more than mob rule, where fifty-one percent of the people may take away the rights of the other forty-nine.
~ Thomas Jefferson(1743-1826), US Founding Father, drafted the Declaration of Independence, 3rd US President
 
Well stated in the flow of this conversation! Works on SCOTUS substituting a 5-count for 51 %. Warren Court!
 
"If you've never read Plato's "The Republic," you should; all the Founders had, which is why they despised democracy...for Plato exposed all of democracy's fatal flaws."
 
Both Plato and his student criticized democracy as unworkable. But Plato defined some super being in the role of philosopher king with marvelous attributes but gave no way to create one or identify one in existence, past or presence. 
 
Democracy fell in Athens mostly due to demagoguery and people like Hillary, Nancy and Schumer use this all the time to warp votes. 
 
Democracy is too good to be  corrupted by the low classes. 
 
 
Jim Stoner Added Dec 1, 2018 - 3:47pm
I blame Alcibiades (some classics scholars would disagree), who was a demagogue, and ultimately a traitor.  Sound familiar? 
 
Plato's dialogues provide a good example of how ruthless logic leads to bad outcomes.   Monarchs and oligarchs have no special claim on wisdom.  Democracy can work if the people are inculcated in civics, understanding of their essential roles, and current events.  That is where we are falling down:  education. 
FacePalm Added Dec 1, 2018 - 7:25pm
rycK-
As best i can recollect, i DID like the Athenian's system of education, which was so well-rounded that any random Citizen could be picked for any government job, and be equally capable.
 
That said, they also relied upon a good-sized slave population to do the actual work.
 
In sum, then, i agree with the Founders that democracy is not good as a system of governance.
The only form of governance i support is that of a Constitutional Republic, and then, only insofar as we can hold our alleged governor's feet to the fire of their oaths of office, compelling obedience on pain of perjury charges and removal for cause.
FacePalm Added Dec 1, 2018 - 7:35pm
Jim-
i don't think that any kind of ruling CLASS would work, in terms of governance; such systems have ALWAYS been models of abuse.  Education, you are correct, is definitely where we've fallen down, but that's because of the "systems" which impose just enough schooling to enable workers to fill out the paperwork and do the sweating.  The PtB have NEVER wanted a truly educated Citizenry, so as to minimize the threats to their existence...competition, iow.
 
The best system of governance, by far, is not ONLY self-governance, but the wisdom to be able to compel Public Servants to obey the consequences of their Oaths; Know Rights or No Rights is a short key to that outcome....and most, today, think that the Rights which officeholders are sworn to "preserve, protect, and defend against all enemies" are too many, if they think about them at all.  Most can't even name the system of governance we have, and if they guess "democracy," they're wrong - just more victims of the Big Lie technique, i.e. repeat a lie so often that it's ACCEPTED as Truth..
George N Romey Added Dec 2, 2018 - 9:49am
I believe if we went back to public beheadings of errant public officials like in centuries past they might clean their act up a bit.
rycK the JFK Democrat Added Dec 2, 2018 - 2:32pm
I would like that if I knew your definition of the word errant.
rycK the JFK Democrat Added Dec 2, 2018 - 2:42pm
FacePalm
 
"i don't think that any kind of ruling CLASS would work, in terms of governance; such systems have ALWAYS been models of abuse.  "
 
The precise meaning of the sentence above strongly hinges on the terms "class" and  "work." Feudalism worked for 1000 years or more in most of Europe and the Roman system for 15 centuries depending on how you count.
 
The  USA had a ruling class, within a broad definition, for decades from its instigation. The British Empire and before had the traditional full monarchy since before Queen Elizabeth, about 1650.
 
These four systems all "worked" to some extent. 
 
Did the USSR have a "class?" Egypt? India? The Mayans?
 
"The best system of governance, by far, is not ONLY self-governance, but the wisdom to be able to compel Public Servants to obey the consequences of their Oaths;"
 
The precise term "compel" escapes me here, but I see what you meant. In the Old West we just gave them a 'fair trial' and summarily hanged them. 
 
I favor a plutocracy. 
FacePalm Added Dec 2, 2018 - 7:15pm
A plutocracy can be - and usually is - just as corrupt or corruptible as any other.
Hamilton was among those who favored a wealthy ruling class: Madison, not so much:
 
"We may define a republic to be ... a government which derives all its powers directly or indirectly from the great body of the people, and is administered by persons holding their offices during pleasure for a limited period, or during good behavior. It is essential to such a government that it be derived from the great body of the society, not from an inconsiderable proportion or a favored class of it; otherwise a handful of tyrannical nobles, exercising their oppressions by a delegation of their powers, might aspire to the rank of republicans and claim for their government the honorable title of republic." James Madison, Federalist No. 10, (1787)
 
OTOH, i believe that we have had a de-facto plutocracy for some time, but only because sworn public servant's feet are not being held to the fires of their Oaths of Office.
rycK the JFK Democrat Added Dec 3, 2018 - 11:37am
"A plutocracy can be - and usually is - just as corrupt or corruptible as any other."
 
Or not. The hundreds of democracies since 1948 show high levels of corruption and I cannot find a single plutocracy.
 
How much decision making can we put in the hands of the uneducated?
 
Not much in my view. 
Bill Added Dec 4, 2018 - 10:27am


rycK the JFK Democrat 

 



""A plutocracy can be - and usually is - just as corrupt or corruptible as any other."
 
Or not. The hundreds of democracies since 1948 show high levels of corruption and I cannot find a single plutocracy.
 
How much decision making can we put in the hands of the uneducated?
 
Not much in my view. "
 
Exactly.  The theory that "more voters makes a better system" is weak at best and absurd on the face of it.  People who cannot subsist on their own resources will always vote for more charity.
 
Our founders had it right - less is more.  In government, in taxes, in regulations.  If I were ever to agree with leftists on anything, I might agree that too much power in ANY small groups' hands (whether private or government) is probably comparable to WMDs, and so perhaps a cap on wealth might actually be a kind of compromise between the left and right.

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