Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Some Thoughts on Democracy at Month's End

Over at, Mr. Frank Karsten writes:

Democracy tends to be equated by many people with prosperity, equality, fairness, togetherness and liberty. There is no evidence for any of this. Democracy rests on three main principles: you have the right to vote, you have the right to run for office, and the majority rules. That’s it. Nowhere is it written for instance that democracy guarantees the right to free speech, a right that many people link with democracy. Nor is there any reason why democracy should lead to prosperity.
Over at his Mail on Sunday blog (although he has apparently not recently written on Sundays), Mr. Peter Hitchens writes:
Mr McCartney is much more outdated than the Monarchy. I don’t just mean that anyone listening today to the works of The Beatles must be puzzled and embarrassed that such trivial stuff plunged millions of teenage girls into shrieking hysteria.

I mean that his political views are much the same as those of a student revolutionary of half a century ago, or of a BBC executive (much the same thing). During the past 40 years or so, republics haven’t exactly distinguished themselves, have they?

Apartheid South Africa was a republic. East Germany was a republic. Iran and Iraq are republics. North Korea is a republic. Republican America searched through more than 200 million citizens for a President and came up with . . . George W. Bush.
Over at Taki's Magazine, Prof. Paul Gottfried writes:
My now deceased polyglot friend Eric [sic] von Kuehnelt-Leddihn was fond of telling a story about his conversation with a Spanish fisherman near Bilbao, whom he asked (probably in Basque) what he thought about the government. The fisherman answered laconically: “Franco worries about the government; I just fish.” The point of this narrative was not to show what a good guy El Caudillo was. It was to indicate how a traditional authoritarian regime proceeded to act once it had settled scores with the revolutionary left. It was interested in order, not in creating a new democratic or socialist man/woman or in opening hitherto undiscovered paths to sensitivity.
Professor Gottfried concludes:
Outside the circles of reactionaries among whom I travel, I have yet to run into people who oppose democracy or equality or who question this ideological consensus. Those who don’t belong to this consensus should not blame politicians. They should indict democracy itself.

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