Wednesday, 7 December 2016

Could it be that democracy is under threat?


Is democracy  under threat?  It is hard to think that it would be.  It is agreed (in civilised countries)  that while it may not be the perfect system, it is the best available. 


In past times, kings ruled, which usually meant the warlord with the biggest army and the most ruthless tactics. Peasants had no say.



But kings were always under threat by other warlords with big armies and ruthless tactics. 





One way of pacifying the powerful, and hopefully retaining the crown, was to offer them some power, enough to make them more wealthy, and less likely to challenge for overall leadership. So the ‘nobles’  were granted some power.  
With time, partly maybe from idealism, more likely to reduce the incentive for revolution, some say was granted to property owners by means of voting. Eventually, the right to vote was extended to all adults, usually aside from those in prisons or deemed incompetent for other reasons.
This is a brief and very much simplified background to the concept of democracy.



Abraham Lincoln said it best.  Government of the people, by the people, for the people.’  








And that is democracy, and so it has been for many, many years. It has never been perfect, those elected to power are too often susceptible to bribes, and too often, they use their power for self enrichment rather than for the benefit of the people.

          And yet, it is fairly obvious to those of us who are not among the powerful, the ‘elite’ as they have taken to calling themselves, that we are better off with the power to vote than we would be under a frank tyranny. It is a strange thing that recently, some of those ‘elite’ have stopped pretending that they are in favour of  democracy. They are actually saying - out loud - that maybe the majority should not be allowed their say, that instead, those who know best should be permitted to have their way whether or not ‘the people’ agree with them.  

Some examples :
Tony Blair and Sir John Majors seem to think that the Brexit vote should be discounted, one of them even referring to 'the tyranny of the majority.'
For the full article, refer to:
 https://www.thesun.co.uk/news/2260696/sir-john-major-sparks-fury-by-declaring-brexit-cannot-be-decided-by-tyranny-of-the-majority/

According to Brietbart, the new UN chief,  António Guterres, said that the will of the people should be ignored. See the full statement here.  (http://www.breitbart.com/london/2016/11/24/un-europe-migration-unstoppable/)  

            Andrew Bolt writes –  ‘We already have journalists who laugh at the idea of free speech. Now we have the chief economist of the Economist magazine's Intelligence Unit asking if democracy is much chop either.’  
(http://www.heraldsun.com.au/blogs/andrew-bolt/cheering-for-their-chains/news-story/1fb8ecc80cd9284c60e1f3cd31754db6)    

Andrew Bolt is an influential conservative commentator. You find good sense at the blog of Andrew Bolt. 

            There was a recent article in the Australian,  (6/12/2016)  in relation to the Austrian presidential election (the ‘far-right’ contender lost.)  The German foreign minister was quoted as saying  the result was ‘a good omen against populism in Europe.’
They speak of ‘populism’ as if it is a creeping disease spreading, rather than simply a popular and perfectly valid point of view.

It was when a clear majority of British voters stated they wanted Britain out of the European Union, that anti-democratic calls started to be more widely heard. Most of the world was very much surprised to see that in Britain, that most civilised and democratic of nations, there were widespread demonstrations calling  for the government to ignore the vote. That somehow it was a mistake, and that those who voted for ‘Brexit’  just didn’t know what they were saying. They were ‘ignorant,’  maybe ‘angry’ or ‘frightened.’ 



So now there has been a challenge in their High Court, and again, it is in doubt. The court ruled that the parliament must vote in favour before anything is done, even though the vote of the people should theoretically mean more than the vote of the individuals in parliament.



America. Donald Trump has been elected to the uttermost fury of the noisy ones who seem to rule politics, plus the media and the educational system. More demonstrations, more protests, and some frank riots, destroying property and endangering people. 


What are they protesting? Democracy? 

Some are now complaining that America is not a democracy because the voting goes through the ‘electoral colleges,’ a system devised to ensure that the populous states do not overrule the wishes of the less populous states. Most democracies have their checks and balances like that. And they are saying that ‘the popular vote’ was not in favour of Trump.
But this is just an excuse.  If the results of a democratic election are overturned, there would be chaos and civil war. Who wants that?
Well, it is said that certain billionaires want that. It appears clear that George Soros, for one, wants open borders and globalisation, and is willing to spend some of his billions bribing world leaders to sway things his way. I cannot, for the life of me, guess why he would want that.
But more and more, it becomes clear that the majority of the people prefer a safe country with secure borders, a country that looks after the interests of its own people first. It is older people and country people who are saying it most clearly, those less exposed to the indoctrination that is so very, very common in schools these days. In America, incredibly, some colleges are offering counselling for college students upset by the win of Trump. Some institutions have been accused of encouraging their students to protest against the win. Who is controlling these institutions? It was a democratic election!  Civilised people accept the results of a democratic election! 

So people may not like the results of the election. It is democracy. It may not suit you, but it is still better than chaos, and a lot better than a dictatorship. I think it vital that democracy be protected – even when you might think that the ‘majority’ are ignorant, foolish, bigoted, whatever. It is still the majority.   


And any person in power who says that the rule of democracy should not be respected should never, ever be again in power. Such an opinion renders him unfit for power.







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