Tunisia, Egypt, all you who are fighting for ‘democracy’ –
Please know exactly what you are fighting for.
You will of course be wrong, and power doesn’t like to admit when it’s wrong. Like despotism, democracy can be enlightened or benighted. However, I believe that in general democracy allows more debate and progress than despotism because there are so very few enlightened despots. The mediocrity and inefficiency of the crowd is preferable to a sadistic dominion.
An afterthought for British readers:
Is it not striking how little has been made of the nature of the recent tax changes? The rich are being taxed more to pay for the poor, yet because this doesn’t fit into the grand narrative of Tory ideology and policy it is not trumpeted. One might expect party members to be hushed on the subject of wealth-redistribution, but why might the press do likewise? Wouldn’t sections of the press make more of this were it a Labour government initiative?
Just a thought.
Of course, it’s just a disguised and unavoidable reversal anyway:
They took too much away with one hand and now give some back with the other, making a show of generosity and ‘fairness’.
My point, and how this relates to the topic: representative democracy is largely a sideshow that disgusies an establishment network which gets on with business-as-usual regardless of the changing figureheads. The politicians and media moguls share more ideas and interests in common with each other than with the public. Britain is not taking care to maintain a decent minimum living-standard because of the ideological fervour and human compassion of its leaders and administrators; these social safeguards are in place for strategic reasons – to enable business as usual.
The social reformers who get a place within the establishment are subsumed into a wealth-machine, not a living, caring society. The living, caring society hasn’t happened yet in the modern world. But it still makes a difference, don’t despair – and no doubt there are wonderful possibilities waiting to be realised.