Saturday, December 13, 2008

Republics and Democracies

I know the difference between the two, and it amazes me how few others do. I also know that our Founders specifically created a republic as opposed to a democracy, fearing and perhaps even loathing that latter form of government. What I did not know, however, was that Aristotle addressed the topic:

Aristotle told us 2300 years ago about such things. He wrote that Republics gradually deteriorate into democracies, which then succumb to an anarchy that simply begs for a leader to restore order. Like a rotting carcass of a dead dog, the decaying tissue of a once free people attracts all sorts of flies and vermin—thus Barney Frank, Nancy Pelosi, Harry Reid, Chris Dodd. Thus Obama. A free people in love with liberty would never place such creatures over them.

I was talking to a friend last night, explaining what I see wrong with modern liberalism. Liberals crave security or protection from a nanny state, whereas I crave liberty. Big difference in outlooks.

We've long since degenerated into a democracy. I fear we may be closer to anarchy and/or tyranny than anyone wants to admit.


allen (in Michigan) said...

Cripes, how about a little faith?

We did, after all, take a big bite out of the welfare state some time back, there was a significant flurry of deregulation as well - trucking, airlines, brokerage, etc., the Assualt Weapon ban expired and the anti-Second Amendment cohort of the left is spoken of in the past tense, affirmative action loses quite regularly at the polls and substantive public education reform, in the form of the charter school movement, continues to soldier on with vouchers lurking in the shadows filling lefties with dread. I'm not saying that all is well but it sure isn't time to start stocking the bunker in the woods.

As for liberals, they're spoiled rich kids.

They want what they want, they want it now, they aren't interested in explanations about why they can't have it now, they expect someone else to give them what they want, they're unconcerned with consequences, refuse to accept responsibility for any negative results of getting what they want and are singularly adept at manipulating other to get what they want.

The bad news is that that's a very attractive way to go through life. The good news is that, viewed with a modest degree of objectivity, the shortcomings of that approach to life become increasingly difficult to ignore as time goes on.

Example the anti-war left and the Iraq war. Obama didn't ditch them as soon as he had the nomination cinched due to a blow to the head. He ditched them because outside of the confines of the Democratic party they're bark turned out to be much worse then their political bite. So when he had no more need of them under the bus they went.

Part of the reason for the left's ineffectiveness with regard to the Iraq war, I believe, is due to the their effectiveness during the Vietnam war. My generation's bad example rose up to haunt this generation's anti-war lefties. Given some time the shortcomings of the left become increasingly difficult to ignore. That's why all their issues are crises. Too much time to think and the patina of credibility wears through.

And for God's sake let's not have any more "Mad Max" vibes out of you!

Darren said...

What bite did we take out of the welfare state, welfare reform? A mere speedbump. President Bush's Medicare prescription drug "benefit" more than made up for that, with HillaryCare Part Deux on the way.

I'm not sure we're heading for Mad Max. I'm far more concerned that we're heading towards Uncle Joe.

Donalbain said...

   /dɪˈmɒkrəsi/ Show Spelled Pronunciation [di-mok-ruh-see] Show IPA Pronunciation
–noun, plural -cies.
1. government by the people; a form of government in which the supreme power is vested in the people and exercised directly by them or by their elected agents under a free electoral system.

One a different note:
I am really fed up with reading political blogs that insist on referring to people who disagree with them in such disgusting terms. It seems that it isnt possible for people to accept that people who disagree with them can do so for good and honest motives. No.. they have to be "flies and vermin", or "nazis" depending on the view of the author.

I happen to disagree with you politically, I am WAY to the left of American politics, being somewhere in the middle of UK politics, but is there any need for name calling? I don't think so..

Darren said...

You're right about name-calling. While the "flies and vermin" part *does* provide a strong visual, the argument could stand on its own merits without it.

allen (in Michigan) said...

That "speed bump" engendered some pretty wild name-calling, "Republicans want to starve a million poor children", comes to mind so it wasn't dismissed is unimportant by the folks arrayed against welfare reform.

Politically, any reverse is frightening. Who's to know if the reverse is the start of a trend or just a blip? And as I pointed out, welfare reform wasn't the only scary political event. Also, there was a popular revulsion against much of what the political left stands for that could be seen in President Clinton's distancing of himself from the word "liberal" as well as clearly expressed unpopularity of the left in the popularization of the term the "L" word.

As for the Bush's prescription drug program, the man's a politician first as all but a very few who rise to the national level inevitably are.

Bush was happy to make use of the gun rights movement but once elected he made clear his flexibility on the issue so he signaled early on that he was a pragmatic politician first and a man of principle where principle didn't conflict too greatly with political goals. Except in the area of national defense I'm glad to write.

I think Bush's, and Rove's, reading of the political landscape was wrong, that what they saw as centrist wasn't what a great number of Americans saw as centrist but the left is the direction in which politicians are prone to lean when there's any uncertainty since that direction always ends up placing more power in the hands of the political class. What politician can find fault with that? The rare one.

As for name-calling, if it isn't necessary why do so many people do it?

Extra points if the answer doesn't imply the superior intelligence or superior breeding of those who decry name-calling.