Tag Archives: Democracy

How the American Republic degenerates into Democracy and Tyranny

Excellent 10-minute crash course on:

  • How the Left Communism vs. Right Fascism political spectrum is misleading.
  • How the five main types of government (dictatorship, oligarchy, democracy, republic, anarchy) are reducible to two (oligarchy vs. republic).
  • How anarchy (no government) is merely a transition (a tool) from one form of government to dictatorial oligarchy.
  • How our Founding Fathers rejected democracy but founded a Republic of the rule of law, wherein government power is constrained by law in the interest of individual liberty.
  • How republican governments, including those of ancient Rome and the present United States, have an inherent tendency to degenerate into democracy and then into dictatorial oligarchy.

H/t Sage_brush

~Eowyn

What do we call the U.S.A.?

We’re not a democracy (rule by the people).

We’re not a republic (a representative democracy, i.e., rule by the representatives of the people) either.

We are an Ineptocracy!

H/t FOTM’s beloved moxielouise.

~Eowyn

Well this Splains a lot.

Scientists say America is too dumb for democracy to thrive
The United States may be a republic, but it’s democracy that Americans cherish. After all, that’s why we got into Iraq, right? To take out a dictator and spread democracy.
“Government of the people, by the people, for the people.” “One person, one vote.” We are an egalitarian society that treasures the mandate of its citizenry.
But more than a decade’s worth research suggests that the citizenry is too dumb to pick the best leaders.

Yup, Dumb and Dumbass's

Yup, Dumb and Dumb ass's

Work by Cornell University psychologist David Dunning and then-colleague Justin Kruger found that “incompetent people are inherently unable to judge the competence of other people, or the quality of those people’s ideas,” according to a report by Life’s Little Mysteries on the blog LiveScience.
Very smart ideas are going to be hard for people to adopt, because most people don’t have the sophistication to recognize how good an idea is,” Dunning told Life’s Little Mysteries.
What’s worse is that with incompetence comes the illusion of superiority.
Let’s say a politician comes up with an ingenious plan that would ensure universal health care while decreasing health care costs.
According to Dunning-Kruger, no matter how much information is provided, the unsophisticated would 1) be incapable of recognizing the wisdom of such a plan; 2) assume they know better; and 3) have no idea of the extent of their inadequacy.
In other words, stupid people are too stupid to know how stupid they are.
If this seems elitist to you, you are probably not alone. Maybe we should only let Ph.D.’s, Mensa members and Jeopardy! champions vote? At least require a passing an IQ test before you get to cast a ballot?
The scientists do say that the incompetent can be trained to improve, but only if they acknowledge their own previous lack of skill, which would seem to be a catch-22 since they are too ignorant to do so on their own.
Life’s Little Mysteries said that Mato Nagel, a sociologist in Germany, ran a computer simulation of a democratic election based on Dunning and Kruger’s theories:
“In his mathematical model of the election, he assumed that voters’ own leadership skills were distributed on a bell curve — some were really good leaders, some, really bad, but most were mediocre — and that each voter was incapable of recognizing the leadership skills of a political candidate as being better than his or her own. When such an election was simulated, candidates whose leadership skills were only slightly better than average always won.”
It would appear then that democracy dooms us to mediocrity and misinformed choices. Not exactly encouraging news for the next round of California’s ballot initiatives.

http://blog.sfgate.com/nov05election/2012/03/09/scientists-say-america-is-too-dumb-for-democracy-to-thrive/?tsp=1

~Steve~                                  H/T  Joseph

Democracy and the Hookup Culture

The word “democracy” is derived from two Greek words, “demos” (people) and “kratia” (rule) — thus, “rule by the people” or self government. A republic is a type of democracy via elected representatives. Inherent in the concept of democratic self-government is a central conviction of the American Founding Fathers that all human beings have the capacity for reason. How else can a people discern their interests and so vote for the most rational and efficient means to achieve their ends?

At the same time as our Founders were convinced that we are endowed with reason, they also were mindful of an opposing human impulse — the sway of our irrational tempers or passions. As James Madison put it:

But the mild voice of reason, pleading the cause of an enlarged and permanent interest, is but too often drowned, before public bodies as well as individuals, by the clamors of an impatient avidity for immediate and immoderate gain. -Federalist No. 42, January 22, 1788.

Two pieces of recent news provide apt illustration of human irrationality that, in turn, brings into question the feasibility of self-government.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the highest prevalence of sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) is among the young: “Estimates suggest that even though young people aged 15–24 years represent only 25% of the sexually experienced population, they acquire nearly half of all new STDs.”

But a recent article by Meredith Cohn in the Baltimore Sun, Feb. 21, 2011, tells us that although “Up to half of sexually active young people will get a sexually transmitted disease by the time they are 25, yet many don’t seek testing because it may be difficult, costly or embarrassing.”

At the same time as at-risk young people eschew being tested for STDs, they have embraced the new phenomenon of “hookups” (also called “booty calls” or “friends with benefits”) — having sex with someone with whom one is not in a relationship. Stripped of its urban slang patina, hookups really are just casual sex, which is just another word for promiscuity.

Last April, CNN’s Stephanie Chen wrote that casual hook ups fueled by alcohol has become the norm across college campuses. “Almost every weekend, there is a tradition called raging at Vanderbilt University” – casual hookups with a stranger or acquaintance “fueled by alcohol.” Studies found as many as 75% of women have engaged in hooking up on campus, with the number even higher for men.

Flash forward to a year later. Enterprising students at the University of Chicago has found a way to better facilitate hookups — i.e., help students to be promiscuous. The Chicago Tribune reports on March 18, 2011 that a new site, UChicago Hookups, connects students at the University of Chicago or its Booth School of Business looking for a no-strings attached hookup.

“We’re trying to change the ages-old stereotype that UChicago students are severely sexually deprived. With that in mind, if you’re looking for ‘where fun comes to die,’ you’ve come to the wrong place,” according to the site created by a group of undergrads. Instead, the site’s tagline is “where fun comes to thrive.”

Only students with a school email account can post and respond to fellow students looking online for casual sex. Launched last month, UChicago Hookups had 77 posts as of Thursday (March 17), most from guys looking for women. The site claims more than 200 registered users; more than 1,000 private messages have been sent.

The following video on college hookups shows that – SURPRISE! - women feel exploited by hookups!

In fact, more and more college women are quitting hookups because of the “emotional devastation” of those “whose hearts are broken by the hook-up scene.” Nor are the broken hearts exclusively women’s.

Sexual promiscuity is especially damaging to females, on both their physical and emotional wellbeing. Did you know that females secrete oxytocin upon orgasm? A mammalian hormone that acts primarily as a neuromodulator in the brain, oxytocin is also called the love or bonding hormone. Women also secrete oxytocin during childbirth and nursing, which binds mother to baby. Sex is not casual; oxytocin emotionally binds women to their sexual partners. No wonder college women feel emotionally devastated, their hearts broken, by participating in hookups! 

The more things change, the more things remain the same. Human beings yearn for love — for an other who knows, loves, and cherishes us for who we are. Hookups  Casual promiscuous sex is not the way to find it. For we were made in His image with inherent dignity. So when we cheapen our body by treating it as a piece of meat, we devalue our very being and soul.

~Eowyn

New Jobs Created Are In Low-Pay Industries

Flipper & Hamburger

Last Friday, the Obama administration trumpeted that the economy is reviving because of the alleged decline in unemployment and concomitant increase in the number of new jobs. But according to Gallup, the U.S. unemployment rate actually rose to 10.3% at the end of February. Worse still, most of the new jobs are in the low-pay “hamburger flipper” sector.

Here are excerpts from Zachary Roth’s March 9, 2011 article for Yahoo! news, Jobs Returning – But Good Ones Not So Much

Lower-wage industries – things like retail and food preparation — accounted for 23% of the jobs lost during the recession, but 49% of the jobs gained over the last year, a recent study (pdf) by the National Employment Law Program found. Higher-wage industries, by contrast, accounted for 40% of the jobs lost, but just 14% of the jobs gained. In other words, low paying jobs are increasing as a percentage of total jobs, while high-paying jobs are on the decline.

• Meanwhile, the percentage of those working who have part-time jobs and want full-time ones surged in mid-February to 19.6% — almost as high as it was a year ago before the recovery began, according to Gallup numbers. That suggests, of course, that a large number of the new jobs created over the last year are part-time.

• And a recent Wall Street Journal analysis found that even though productivity rose 5.2% from mid 2009 to the end of 2010, wages increased by just 0.3%. That means only 6% of productivity gains were shared with workers. In past recoveries, that figure has averaged 58%. This time around, far more of the gains went to shareholders, in the form of profits, which are at record levels.

In other words:

  1. The Obama administration’s rosy picture about the economic recovery is a lie.
  2. The structural change in the U.S. economy which has been going on for some time now even before the present recession/depression struck in 2007 is real and our government is unable/unwilling to do anything about it. The structural changes include:
    1. The outsourcing export and loss of manufacturing jobs;
    2. The movement down of those workers to lower-paying low-skill low-education “hamburger flipper” jobs; and
    3. The socio-political consequence is a diminishing middle class that bodes ill for democracy’s future
  3. Conservatives shy away from this, but the miniscule 0.3% wage increase despite a 5.2% increase in labor productivity means that American workers are being screwed by their corporate masters. Remember what the late Christopher Lasch warned us in his prescient book, Revolt of the Elites and the Betrayal of Democracy:

There is a new global elite — comprised of multinational business corporations, Hollywood and pop music, news media, and professionals (bankers, traders, investors, lawyers,) – who are not nationalists because they make their living in/from a global market. The Americans among them have U.S. citizenship but don’t really care about America or the American people. They have more in common with their cohorts across the world. That is where their hearts are, and it’s not America. 

~Eowyn

America’s Crumbling Moral Infrastructure

George Washington, First Inaugural Address, 1789:

“There exists in the economy and course of nature an indissoluble union between virtue and happiness … we ought to be no less persuaded that the propitious smiles of Heaven can never be expected on a nation that disregards the eternal rules of order and right which Heaven itself has ordained.”

John Adams, 2nd President of the USA:

“We have no government armed with power capable of contending with human passions unbridled by morality and religion. Our Constitution was made for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate for the government of any other.”

Dr. Nelson Price:

“Democracy is not the soil out of which morality grows. Morality is the essential soil in which democracy thrives. A certain ethos, a characteristic spirit of a culture or community, is required.”

Antonio Gramsci, Italian Marxist:

A revolution is not just fought in the realm of politics or with violence. To be successful “any revolutionary class . . . must secure cultural hegemony.”

Prov 24:19; Romans 12:19:

“Do not fret because of evildoers.””Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.”

C.B.:

“Trust a God who loved us enough to die for us.”


The United States of Shame

by Jeff Wysaski - PleatedJeans – Jan 24, 2011

Whether it’s a fat population, high rate of STDs or excessive tax rate, it turns out that every state ranks dead last in at least one unsavory category. Check out the map (click image to enlarge) to see what your state is the worst at. Most stats taken from http://www.americashealthrankings.org/ and http://www.census.gov/compendia/statab/rankings.html (unless otherwise noted)

  1. Alabama: highest rate of stroke (3.8 percent) (tied with Oklahoma)
  2. Alaska: highest suicide rate (23.6 suicides per 100,000 people in 2004)
  3. Arizona: highest rate of alcoholism
  4. Arkansas: worst average credit score (636) http://www.talkbusiness.net/article/ARKANSAS-RANKS-LAST-IN-CREDIT-SCORE-AVERAGES/1007/
  5. California: most air pollution (15.2 micrograms per cubic meter)
  6. Colorado: highest rate of cocaine use per capita (3.9 percent total population)
  7. Connecticut: highest rate of breast cancer http://www.statehealthfacts.org/comparemaptable.jsp?ind=469&cat=10&sub=112&sort=a
  8. Delaware: highest abortion rate (27 per 1,000 women aged 15 to 44)
  9. Florida: highest rate of identity theft (122.3 reports per 100,000 people)
  10. Georgia: sickly based on highest rate of influenza
  11. Hawaii –highest cost of living (tied with California) http://www.cnbc.com/id/38148092/States_With_the_Highest_Cost_of_Living?slide=11
  12. Idaho – lowest level of Congressional clout http://www.newwest.net/topic/article/roll_call_rocky_mountain_states_still_at_bottom_of_congressional_clout_list/C559/L559/
  13. Illinois: highest rate of robbery (284.7 incidences per 100,000 people)
  14. Indiana: rated the most environmentally unfriendly by NMI solutions http://www.environmentalleader.com/2010/09/15/indiana-comes-in-last-on-green-state-ranking/
  15. Iowa: highest percentage of people age 85 and older (1.8 percent) (tied with three other states) http://www.statemaster.com/graph/peo_per_of_peo_who_are_85_yea_and_ove-percent-who-85-years-over
  16. Kansas: poorest health based on highest average number of limited activity days per month (3.5 days) http://www.statemaster.com/graph/hea_lim_act_day_per_mon-limited-activity-days-per-month
  17. Kentucky: most cancer deaths (227 per 100,000 people) (BONUS fact: Kentucky also has the highest rate of tobacco smokers – 25.6 percent)
  18. Louisiana: highest rate of gonorrhea (264.4 reported cases per 100,000 people) http://www.statemaster.com/graph/hea_gon_rat-health-gonorrhea-rate
  19. Maine: dumbest state claim based on lowest average SAT score (1389) http://www.commonwealthfoundation.org/policyblog/detail/2010-sat-scores-by-state
  20. Maryland: highest rate of AIDS diagnosis (27.6 people per 100,000 people) http://www.avert.org/usa-states-cities.htm
  21. Massachusetts: worst drivers claim based on highest rate of auto accidents http://www.theautochannel.com/news/2002/11/11/150352.html
  22. Michigan: highest unemployment rate (13.6 percent)
  23. Minnesota: highest number of reported tornadoes (123 in 2010) http://woodbury.kstp.com/content/minnesota-ranks-first-nation-tornado-reports-2010
  24. Mississippi: highest rate of obesity (35.3 percent of total population) BONUS facts: Mississippi ranks last in the most number of categories. These include highest rate of child poverty (31.9 percent), highest rate of infant mortality (10.3 percent) lowest median household income ($35,078), highest teen birth rate (71.9 per 1,000 women aged 15 to 19) and highest overall rate of STDs.
  25. Missouri: highest rate of bankruptcy (700 out of every 100,000 people) http://www.bcsalliance.com/bankruptcy_statestats.html
  26. Montana: highest rate of drunk driving deaths (1.12 deaths per 100 million miles driven) http://helenair.com/lifestyles/article_c48ad0a6-bce0-5f69-931e-dc5ca0f83583.html
  27. Nebraska: highest rate of women murdered annually
  28. Nevada: highest rate violent crime (702.2 offenses per 100,000 people). BONUS fact: Nevada also has the highest rate of foreclosure (one in 99 houses)
  29. New Hampshire: highest rate of corporate taxes http://newhampshire.watchdog.org/7194/nh-ranks-last-in-corporate-tax-climate-7th-best-for-business-overall/
  30. New Jersey: highest rate of citizen taxation (11.8 percent) http://retirementliving.com/RLtaxes.html
  31. New Mexico: antisocial claim based on lowest ranking in social heath policies http://www.lasg.org/NMecon05.htm
  32. New York: longest average daily commute (30.6 minutes) http://www.statemaster.com/graph/lab_mea_tra_tim_to_wor-labor-mean-travel-time-work
  33. North Carolina: lowest average teacher salary http://www.southernstudies.org/2008/01/north-carolina-ranks-last-for-teacher.html
  34. North Dakota: ranked last in ugliest residents report as chosen by The Daily Beast http://www.thedailybeast.com/galleries/1272/1/?redirectURL=http://www.thedailybeast.com/blogs-and-stories/2010-02-01/the-most-and-least-attractive-states/
  35. Ohio: nerdiest state claim based on highest number of library visits per capita (6.9) http://www.statemaster.com/graph/edu_pub_lib_lib_vis_per_cap-libraries-library-visits-per-capita
  36. Oklahoma: highest rate of female incarceration
  37. Oregon: highest rate of long-term homeless people
  38. Pennsylvania: highest rate of arson deaths (55.56 annually) http://www.statemaster.com/graph/cri_ars_dea-crime-arson-deaths
  39. Rhode Island: highest rate of illicit drug use (12.5 percent of population) http://economix.blogs.nytimes.com/2009/08/11/drug-use-across-the-united-states-or-rhode-island-needs-more-rehab/
  40. South Carolina: highest percentage of mobile homes (18.8 percent) http://www.statemaster.com/graph/hou_per_of_hou_uni_tha_are_mob_hom-housing-percent-units-mobile-homes
  41. South Dakota: highest rate of forcible rape 76.5 per 100,000
  42. Tennessee: chosen most corrupt state by The Daily Beast http://www.thedailybeast.com/blogs-and-stories/2010-05-11/the-most-corrupt-states/
  43. Texas: lowest high school graduation rate (78.3 percent) http://www.statemaster.com/graph/edu_hig_sch_dip_or_hig_by_per-high-school-diploma-higher-percentage
  44. Utah: highest rate of of online porn subscriptions http://www.deseretnews.com/article/705288350/Utah-No-1-in-online-porn-subscriptions-report-says.html
  45. Vermont: infertility claim based on lowest birth rate of any state (10.6 births per 1,000) (tied with Maine) http://www.statemaster.com/graph/hea_bir_rat_per_100-birth-rate-per-1-000
  46. Virginia: highest number of alcohol-related motorcyle deaths http://www.vabiker.net/2008/09/virginia-ranks-last-nationally-in-alcohol-related-motorcycle-deaths/
  47. Washington: most cases of bestiality (4 reported in 2010) http://www.pet-abuse.com/pages/cruelty_database/statistics/state_ranking.php?year=2010&search=go
  48. West Virginia: highest rate of heart attack (6.5 percent of population)
  49. Wisconsin: highest rate of binge drinking (23.2 percent of population)
  50. Wyoming: highest rate of deadly car crashes (24.6 deaths per 100,000) http://www.autoinsurancequotealert.com/news/wyoming-leads-nation-with-highest-motor-vehicle-fatality-rate/

~Posted by Eowyn

Wise Words from a Founding Father

In a world increasingly in tumult, these words from 214 years ago are a reminder to us to hold true to America’s founding vision.

“I have been happy… in believing that… whatever follies we may be led into as to foreign nations, we shall never give up our Union, the last anchor of our hope, and that alone which is to prevent this heavenly country from becoming an arena of gladiators.” –Thomas Jefferson, letter to Elbridge Gerry, 1797

H/t PatriotPost

~Eowyn

Some Words Of Wisdom About Our Government

Ancient Rome declined because it had a Senate, now what’s going to happen to us with both a House and a Senate?
Will RogersRichard LammJames Russell LowellJorge Luis BorgesH. L. MenckenSydney J. HarrisJohn Kenneth Galbraith

Christmas is the time when kids tell Santa what they want and adults pay for it. Deficits are when adults tell government what they want and their kids pay for it.

Democracy gives every man the right to be his own oppressor.

Democracy is an abuse of statistics.

Democracy is the art and science of running the circus from the monkey cage.

Democracy is the only system that persists in asking the powers that be whether they are the powers that ought to be.

Economics is extremely useful as a form of employment for economists.

Every government is a parliament of whores. The trouble is, in a democracy, the whores are us.
P. J. O’RourkeJonathan SwiftP. J. O’RourkeFred WoodworthGeorge WashingtonThomas PaineWilliam E. GladstoneAlexander WoollcottPaul HarveyFred WoodworthJames MadisonSaint AugustineThomas Jefferson

For in reason, all government without the consent of the governed is the very definition of slavery.

Giving money and power to government is like giving whiskey and car keys to teenage boys.

Government is an unnecessary evil. Human beings, when accustomed to taking responsibility for their own behavior, can cooperate on a basis of mutual trust and helpfulness.

Government is not reason; it is not eloquent; it is force. Like fire, it is a dangerous servant and a fearful master.

Government, even in its best state, is but a necessary evil; in its worst state, an intolerable one.

Here is my first principle of foreign policy: good government at home.

I’m tired of hearing it said that democracy doesn’t work. Of course it doesn’t work. We are supposed to work it.

If ‘pro’ is the opposite of ‘con’ what is the opposite of ‘progress’?

If human beings are fundamentally good, no government is necessary; if they are fundamentally bad, any government, being composed of human beings, would be bad also.

If men were angels, no government would be necessary.

In the absence of justice, what is sovereignty but organized robbery?

It is error alone which needs the support of government. Truth can stand by itself.

~Steve~                                       H/T         brainyquote