by A.J.(Tony) Powell

Is the USA a ‘democracy’ or not?

One definition reads “A true ‘democracy’ is government by-the-people. But the United States is a ‘Representative’ democracy. The citizens elect representatives such as the president, members of congress, and senators. As I see it, neither system works for long. Government ‘by-the-people’ deteriorates into ‘mob rule’, because, in practice, there is no government.

For example, the ‘free’ countries of the ‘civilized’ world, removed Libyan dictator Col. Muammar el-Qaddafi. ‘The People’ were then free to choose their own, new leadership. The result? – Uncontrolled chaos!

Does that means that ‘Representative Democracy’ is a better choice? History shows that ‘yes’ – It’s better for a while! Reason being that, human nature favors an ‘oligarchy’. {Def:-The elite having unchallenged control} And as nature is, the scum floats to the top, and, over time, chokes off the very pond that feeds it.

One national writer rants, “I’ve always been impressed by the intelligence, imagination, creativity, and humor of the American people, but then how did we end up with such corrupt and mediocre leaders?” As I See It, democracy should strive to protect both liberty and equality. But, the question is, “Can we have both?”

A dictatorship, for example, like Haiti, might provide equality. But total liberty is anarchy. Capitalism, communism, socialism or any other kind of ‘ism’ will, eventually collapse when the oppressed revolt against their oppressors. History shows that America’s founding fathers tried to protect the rights of the minority against the power of the majority. And tried to ensure effective governance by a limited government.

Yet, here in 2018 these questions are still unresolved. Personal freedom -vs- Public order?

Individual rights -vs- Public purposes?

Police power vs- Individual rights?

Big money -vs- Free speech?

Can regulated speech be free speech?

The Supreme Court gives equal time to each side. This is regulated speech, so in this case, regulation ensures fair and vigorous debate. Also, years ago, the Supreme Court ruled that your right to speak doesn’t include the right to drown out your opposition. As I see it, the concept of ‘free speech’ has been corrupted to mean “I talk”. But “I listen” has no place in society today.

Recently I came across a talk show on Public Radio called “1A” – They boast that their name reflects the First Amendment. And they certainly exercise their right to be heard. The host and the selected panel all have the same perspective, all safe, secure professionals. Call-ins are permitted but are promptly ignored if they digress from the ‘party-line’.

I was always taught “You listen – You Learn!” After all, everyone in the world knows something that I don’t.

What a goofy idea!

’til next time……..

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