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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Maharbbal Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16-Aug-2006 at 23:04
Dear Tobo I'd first recommand  this La Boétie short essay written in the 16th c. since then nobody has done better. It is called: On Volontary slavery. He was supposedly 19 when he wrote it.  http://www.constitution.org/la_boetie/serv_vol.htm

I do see some little problems in your general speach.

This is secondary but your vision of the Venitian constitution is completely erronous. About 300 nobles formed the Great Council, the only source of political power and their sons would take their place. Getting in required a little more than writting an essay; namely a few thousands ducats.

Saying fascism is democracy is impossible. I think you are misguiding your missiles. fascism is the ultimate form of state power and democracy is a state as well. Most of the things you say are against the state not against democracy.

Here are the two arguments to support the existance of a state agaisnt the libertarian attacks.
• The state is the best way to control both social life (who has murdered who) and economy (who is trusty and has the licence to sell and who isn't).
• The state forms an arena where conservative and progressive forces fight and usually after a long struggle the progressive wins. Take for instance the Civil Rights Movement, without the backing of the US federal government, most likely mini apartheid would still be going in the US. The state multiplies the power of the group which own it.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Sparten Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 17-Aug-2006 at 01:18

Democracy's two (and I would say fatal) flaws are, one that it does not do whats right, just what most people want, secondly it breeds mediocracy rather than good leadership.

Quite simplyn democracy is a utopian dream, unattainable, impractical best forgotten about. Which is why there is no country in the world which is democratic at all. Simply put, a modern head of state or government isn the equivalent in most ways of a King, Caliph, Emperor, Dictator. The powers that he enjoys are in most instances those one of the above would recognize as being inherent in their office.
 
If their is an example of an imperial office in todays world, than I would say its the American Presidency, the man who holds that rank, has the power to wage wars, create new laws via Executive Orders, disregard existing ones,  appoint officers of state, blow up the world, and a host of others. I would say that the two Rossevelts for instance, or perhaps Jefferson and Lincoln,  were as much dictators, in the scence of the power they had, as say Loius XIV, as much of an Emperor as Augustus, or Trajen.
 
 


Edited by Sparten - 17-Aug-2006 at 01:19
The Germans also take vacations in Paris; especially during the periods they call "blitzkrieg".
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote gcle2003 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 17-Aug-2006 at 07:58
The question is not whether democracy has flaws, because it undoubtedly has.
 
The question is, what do you replace it with that is better? The alternatives are constitutional government based on democratic (not necessarily simple majority) acceptance, or  imposed autocracy or oligarchy. Or of course no government at all.
 
The autocrat or the oligarchs can only be self-imposed (because if they are selected by the people it is a democratic system). Self-imposed dictators and self-imposed oligarchies are shot full of flaws when it comes to governing stably and fairly. And no government at all is hardly a basis on which to build a society.


Edited by gcle2003 - 17-Aug-2006 at 07:59
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Sparten Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 17-Aug-2006 at 08:32

You can replace it with anything. The only essential is that the person or body exersizing executive powers", be responsible to another person or body.

The Germans also take vacations in Paris; especially during the periods they call "blitzkrieg".
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote gcle2003 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 17-Aug-2006 at 09:10
Originally posted by Sparten Sparten wrote:

You can replace it with anything. The only essential is that the person or body exersizing executive powers", be responsible to another person or body.

 
Who would that be? And who decides who he or they should be responsible to?
 
Those are the questions you and Tobodai are ducking.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Sparten Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 17-Aug-2006 at 11:02

A King can be responsible to parliament for instance, or in Coke's immortal words, "the King can have no powers except what the law give him".

The Germans also take vacations in Paris; especially during the periods they call "blitzkrieg".
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Tobodai Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 17-Aug-2006 at 17:46
Originally posted by Maharbbal Maharbbal wrote:

Dear Tobo I'd first recommand  this La Boétie short essay written in the 16th c. since then nobody has done better. It is called: On Volontary slavery. He was supposedly 19 when he wrote it.  http://www.constitution.org/la_boetie/serv_vol.htm

I do see some little problems in your general speach.

This is secondary but your vision of the Venitian constitution is completely erronous. About 300 nobles formed the Great Council, the only source of political power and their sons would take their place. Getting in required a little more than writting an essay; namely a few thousands ducats.

Saying fascism is democracy is impossible. I think you are misguiding your missiles. fascism is the ultimate form of state power and democracy is a state as well. Most of the things you say are against the state not against democracy.

Here are the two arguments to support the existance of a state agaisnt the libertarian attacks.
• The state is the best way to control both social life (who has murdered who) and economy (who is trusty and has the licence to sell and who isn't).
• The state forms an arena where conservative and progressive forces fight and usually after a long struggle the progressive wins. Take for instance the Civil Rights Movement, without the backing of the US federal government, most likely mini apartheid would still be going in the US. The state multiplies the power of the group which own it.
 
You absolutely right about the nobles thing, which I adressed as the fatal flaw in the Venetian system, still even with such a huge flaw Venice's amount of bad leaders proportionally to its good ones is much lower than say the US or the UK.  Theyre bribery is also nothing compared to the halls of congress.  At least that bribery went to the coffers of the state and not a personal jet or a bridge to nowhere.
 
I think you just made a fatal flaw in saying democracy is NOT state worship and fascism is and then went on to say how important the state is.  As I said before, the reason any progressive things ever happen is because of oligarchic organizations like the Supreme COurt (an unelected body) that goes against the ignorant bigots of the masses (democratic society). Most of western societies societal sucess comes from the will of enlightened elites and not the populace. 
 Fascism is thus a branch of populist democratic thought as you cannot set up a fascist government without a majority consensus built on the petty and supersticious hatreds of the masses.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Maharbbal Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 17-Aug-2006 at 19:58
Hum hum hum.

I was wondering why I didn't like your all idea. Then I remember: what you are advocating has a name, it is called the FUHRERPRINZIP. Its is the very base of national-socialism. A leader will come out from the mass to skip them to the most glorious days of their History! Heil!

I of course do not assimilate you with the nazis yet that is indeed how your speach sounds like. If you have an elite ruling the country they have to come from somewhere. I guess you are refusing the government of the wealthiests or the government of the nobles, so as gcle would say where do the power would come from?

Interestingly you point out the fact unelected bodies were at the origin of "most of the western societies societal sucess". This may be partially true in the countries of common law (namely US and UK and for that matter the EU) but it is defently not the case in the rest of Europe where it is almost always the elected bodies that are at the origin of any move (after usually the due pressure from society). This goes from allowing syndicate, separating church and state, banning death penalty, and so on. Some countries like Italy are so disgustingly democratic that the most important questions are often left to referundum. And I'm not even talking about the Swiss.

Finally what you are failling to see is that if in democratic societies unelected bodies have any form of sovereignty it is precisely because they are chosen and closely depend from the elected ones this is true for all the judges, the suprem court, and even the military HQ (not mentionning the ministers, secretaries) etc. The one and only exception to this rule (we needed one, didn't we?) is the English Lords who are indeed not elected (I think though I'm not completely sure).
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote gcle2003 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 18-Aug-2006 at 06:19
Originally posted by Tobodai Tobodai wrote:

  As I said before, the reason any progressive things ever happen is because of oligarchic organizations like the Supreme COurt (an unelected body) that goes against the ignorant bigots of the masses (democratic society).
 
Well, in the first place the Supreme Court is nominated by someone who is elected, and the appointment confirmed by a group of elected representatives. So it's a democratic system, which you are claiming to be against.
 
Secondly, I don't consider the body that issued the Dred Scott  verdict or settled the 2000 election in Bush's favour (just for starters) to be a particularly progressive one. In fact the Supreme Court, in its very constitution with life tenure, tends to be conservative, which is why it still reflects the values of the late 20th century rather than those of the Bush administraton.
 
Quote
 
Most of western societies societal sucess comes from the will of enlightened elites and not the populace. 
 Fascism is thus a branch of populist democratic thought as you cannot set up a fascist government without a majority consensus built on the petty and supersticious hatreds of the masses.
 
How are you going to set up ANY governmental system other than by popular consent (democracy) or by force?
 
And why do you continually duck the question of who chooses the elites?
 
That decisions should be taken by the people best qualified to take them is so painfully obvious that it's trivial. I'd guess every teenager that starts looking at political systems comes up with it.
 
The questions of interest are who decides who the best people are, and who decides what they should be trying to achieve?
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Tobodai Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 18-Aug-2006 at 22:51
 
Yes you poiinted out my argument nicely glce, The court is the best form of government in America because it is th eleast elected, unfortunately their appointer is still elected, thats probbaly why they are too conservative.  If someone pragmatic and intelligent enough managed to conquer all or most of America that already shows more skill than being elected because of phony promises.  
 
How should one choose rulers? Create them.  Why should a person that runs a bank a farm or a tanning salon presume to know anything of rule?  If you truly need a ruler, and smart peopel really dont but most are not smart, they should be someone who has devoted their life to understanding the ways of the world, science, economics, politics, history.  Know the world around you so you can come to a balanced conclusion. Of course there shouldnt be one just in case they have hidden pshychosis, but a council of such people who are appointed by the people they suceed.  Of course such a system would have massive flaws, but at least if I was forced to fight against the government or disagree with it I would know it wasnt done simply to galvanize the voters with something idiotic.  The liklihood of the reason making sense, even if it conflicts with my goals, is much higher. 
 
 
Your too obsessed with some ideal of person who I think is about to come over the horizon and set things right.
I am a realist not an idealist, all systems have flaws, but Im providing all these societies that think there is only one best form of govermnet that no, there is not.  All have benefits and all have flaws and if you agree with most people than democracy is for you and thats all well and good, but it is not good for me.  When you find yourself the minority in almost every single major position you realize your intrests are not being served (and whats the point of paying taxes and obeying if they are not) and that you must either seize control, back someone like you who can, or move somewhere else.  All of course are ideas I consider as future realities for me.


Edited by Tobodai - 18-Aug-2006 at 23:05
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Tobodai Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 18-Aug-2006 at 23:08
and Maharball, maybe that would explain why organized crime corrution and incompitence are so prevalent in Italy, I mean these people have thier own shameful democratically elected ruler.  I can tell you much as I may disagree with certain policies of his Castro is a far more compitent man than Burlesconi ever could be!  Hes not elected you know!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote BMC21113 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 19-Aug-2006 at 00:41
-Unfortunately, I do not really feel that the majority is capable of truly deciding what is best for their country. It does pain me to say this, as I do believe in Democracy and would not trade the rights I posess as a United States Citizen for anything in the world. This claim comes from the overall influential public, those whom often blindly follow that which is told to them instead of actually thinking for themselves. I feel as though all citizens should be entitled to equal rights, though that does not necessarily endorse the idea of true equality. When I speak of equality, I speak of talents, characteristics, personality traits, etc.... People are not all leaders. If they were, the term leader would in fact be nonexistent. Being said, perhaps the single greatest flaw in a Democracy is the assumption that all people can and should decide the fate of our country. As of now, "block" voting is often a manifestation of fast talking politicians. Most people are fairly oblivious to that which is going on around them, and thus, follow policies and ideas that look nice, yet have no foundation in feasibility. We can break this idea down a level further and examine the basic structures of society in general. Now, we can all agree that people are either successful or unsuccessful for a reason......I mean, we can not all be PhD's. Of course we should all have the opportunity to pursue this goal if we wish, but in reality, there is no way a society of doctors could ever get along. Take a successful independent business man with little education. There is a reason he is more successful than the competition...personal characteristics and successful traits.....
 
-Being said, what is the meaning of all of this? It is simple, we are all unique individuals, not all of which are capable of making complicated decisions regarding the fate of the nation. Instead of politicians, many crooked, attempting to advance their agenda based on underhand deception, we should allow the capable to decide for themselves. Now, I understand that this is a controversial position.Determining what exactly "qualifies" a person as capable of making decisions is another issue in itself, though I feel that you can see where I am going with this.......
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote BMC21113 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 19-Aug-2006 at 00:43
Originally posted by Tobodai Tobodai wrote:

SO often we all ask, how could the people of Germany be so brainwashed as to not question in large enough numbers the validity of facism, or why suffering peasants in Russia didnt question the Tsar (or the commies)?
 
But when I hear this I feel it often smacks of hypocrisy.  SO many of us grow up in societies that tell us our way of life is best, that everyone should have equal representation in government.  I used to believe this, I most certainly do not any longer.  I beleive the equation that the best thing for the people=the will of the majority is the biggest (and most prevalent) flaw in western society, and it goes a long way to explain alot of the major grade A disasters that have occured in the 20th century.
 
Isnt anyone that never questions or challenges thier society no matter what that society is, guilty of the same crime as those that enabled the Nazis?
 
And how is democracy not just another form of the same kind of government that was fascist or communist inspired? All of them value charisma over intelligence or skill, and all of them harness popular support for short term objectives by pandering to the lowest common denominator.
 
 
 
-I agree alot with you here Tobodai. I think that you make several very good points. Clap
 
 


Edited by BMC21113 - 19-Aug-2006 at 00:50
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Tobodai Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 19-Aug-2006 at 00:51

Yes this is my original point, that has been lost in the subsequent thread.  And I have to say BMC that block voting and similar stuff is a very valid point you bring up I missed entirely.

 I think everyone is born equal as they have yet to show by their actions what they are.  Thus I regard all children (exciept for my devil child nephew) as equal, legally.  Once however you graduate from high school although you should forever retain rights to live your private life however you wish you should not immediatly get voting rights.  I mean tome there are 10 year olds who are smarter than some 50 year olds and cannot vote because of their age, while a couch potato welfare sucking parasite like my grandfather can merely because he is older. 

One way I wouldnt have a problem with democracy is if there was a voting liscence you had to get.  It tested your knowledge of history political events and geography.  Only those that could pass this test (and pass its renwewl when they are old and getting senile) can vote.  I would accept that system.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote BMC21113 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 19-Aug-2006 at 01:04
-Well, I think you covered the overall idea very well throughout your posts. A "merit" voting system would probably work well, though it is a very slippery slope. As several others have mentioned in this thread, including myself, it is very difficult to choose who these people are and/or should be. I believe that "merits" should be earned by accomplishments such as: home ownership, education, clean criminal records, historical and political knowledge, IQ, etc.... This may not be entirely fair, but I have never heard anybody say that life was fair. I guess this system would be somewhat of a "modified" democracy. Everyone has a right to vote, though not all votes have equal weight. With the correct system, once all votes were tallied accordingly, the votes would probably represent themselves in the best direction for the country.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Tobodai Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 19-Aug-2006 at 02:17
One central idea I want to cover is best said not by me but one of my heroes:
 
"A man who has nothing which he is willing to fight for, nothing which he cares about more than he does about his personal safety, is a miserable creature who has no chance of being free, unless made and kept so by the exertions of better men than himself."
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote gcle2003 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 19-Aug-2006 at 05:17
Originally posted by BMC21113 BMC21113 wrote:

-Being said, what is the meaning of all of this? It is simple, we are all unique individuals, not all of which are capable of making complicated decisions regarding the fate of the nation. Instead of politicians, many crooked, attempting to advance their agenda based on underhand deception, we should allow the capable to decide for themselves. Now, I understand that this is a controversial position.Determining what exactly "qualifies" a person as capable of making decisions is another issue in itself, though I feel that you can see where I am going with this.......
 
No I can't see where you are going.
 
At the moment (in democratic societies) the choice of who is capable of making decisions is made by a majority (not necessarily a simple majority) of citizens.
 
What are you suggesting instead?
 
Tobodai ducks the question again by saying the new leaders should be appointed by the old leaders - without saying how the original leaders are chosen.
 
There is no reason to suppose an unelected oligarchy would be any less corrupt - or corruptible - than an elected one. And it would be a whole lot harder to deal with once it had become corrupt.
 
With regard to the idea of 'earning' the right to vote, this is of course illegal in the US at the moment specifically because of the corruption it led to, particularly in the South. Which is not a bad reason for it being illegal.
 
Moreover though you are still up against the basic question of who determines who has the earned the right to vote. Maybe in Georgia it should be 'people who have studied the Bible and accept it as literally true'?
 
If there is an overall solution to this problem it has to be with improving the education of the electorate to increase its sense of reponsibility for its government. Tough, I agree. And there are minor changes that help: proportional representation, capping the amount that can be spent on political campaigns, guarantees of free television time and the banning of paid political advertising....
 
There is no ideological situation to the problem; merely a number of incremental improvements that can be introduced from time to time.
 
 
 


Edited by gcle2003 - 19-Aug-2006 at 05:26
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Tobodai Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 19-Aug-2006 at 15:11
I will admit that democracy is fine if everyone is educated and intelligent, but I do not beleive that everyone is intelligent or capable of being rational.
 
Democracy is what is ideological thats how they get elected, not like some great unelected leaders of the past who appointed based n skill rather than political thought their underlings.
 
It is not an ideological solution that motivates me but a selfish one (I have no problem with admitting that) I am often in the minority position so I seek to seize power, the oligarchy is appointed by meBig smile
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Tobodai Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 19-Aug-2006 at 15:21
And how pray tell is your refrence to the souths old jim crowe laws relevent when they prove my point?  Those laws were made after the withdrawal of reconstruction forces by the newly elected southern governmetns, thus when northerners dictated to the south what to do civil rights where better, when they left and gave back democracy to the south they got worse.
Those voting tests were not even based on intelligence, they were based on ancestry.  Im talking about a voting test like a drivers liscence that tests knowledge only.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote BMC21113 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 19-Aug-2006 at 19:11
Originally posted by gcle2003 gcle2003 wrote:

Originally posted by BMC21113 BMC21113 wrote:

-Being said, what is the meaning of all of this? It is simple, we are all unique individuals, not all of which are capable of making complicated decisions regarding the fate of the nation. Instead of politicians, many crooked, attempting to advance their agenda based on underhand deception, we should allow the capable to decide for themselves. Now, I understand that this is a controversial position.Determining what exactly "qualifies" a person as capable of making decisions is another issue in itself, though I feel that you can see where I am going with this.......
 
No I can't see where you are going.
 
At the moment (in democratic societies) the choice of who is capable of making decisions is made by a majority (not necessarily a simple majority) of citizens.
 
What are you suggesting instead?
 
Tobodai ducks the question again by saying the new leaders should be appointed by the old leaders - without saying how the original leaders are chosen.
 
There is no reason to suppose an unelected oligarchy would be any less corrupt - or corruptible - than an elected one. And it would be a whole lot harder to deal with once it had become corrupt.
 
With regard to the idea of 'earning' the right to vote, this is of course illegal in the US at the moment specifically because of the corruption it led to, particularly in the South. Which is not a bad reason for it being illegal.
 
Moreover though you are still up against the basic question of who determines who has the earned the right to vote. Maybe in Georgia it should be 'people who have studied the Bible and accept it as literally true'?
 
If there is an overall solution to this problem it has to be with improving the education of the electorate to increase its sense of reponsibility for its government. Tough, I agree. And there are minor changes that help: proportional representation, capping the amount that can be spent on political campaigns, guarantees of free television time and the banning of paid political advertising....
 
There is no ideological situation to the problem; merely a number of incremental improvements that can be introduced from time to time.
 
 
 
 
 
-I do not think that new leaders should be selected by old leaders, but rather, leaders are elected the same way. What I propose changing is the standard one vote per individual. Here I suggest that all American citizens be automatically granted a "level 1" voting rights. A level 1 voters identification allows all American citizens over 18 years of age one vote. Other citizens would be eligible to increase their voting potential to that of a level 5 voters identification card. This would be determined through a "merit" system such as the one which I spoke of earlier. A level 1 is worth 1 vote....a level 5 is worth 5 votes......
 
-The basic problem with allowing all citizens one equal vote is that regardless of how qualified a person is, they have the same vote as a person who is extremely unqualified to make decisions. By "qualified", I am speaking of competent and successful people who understand what is good for the future of their country. By allowing those who actually know what they are talking about to have adequate weight in our electoral process would result in a higher success rate of choosing the proper represenatives and determine the best course for our future.
 
-Now, I favor Democracy over all forms of government in the world today....but as the topic states, the Democratic process has flaws. I agree with this statement. I am only suggesting improvements on our current system, and by no means am I trying to create some kind of Monarchial or Oligarchial rule, but rather feel that certain people deserve to have more "say so" than others. It would be hard to disagree with this idea. Also, my proposal for "levels" of voting rights would also encourage others to work hard and earn their rights. In this system, if you felt that you were not being heard, you actually have the potential to increase your influence in the electoral and decision making process........
 
 
"To be prepared for war is one of the most effective means of preserving peace"-George Washington
"The art of war is, in the last result, the art of keeping one's freedom of action."-Xenophon
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