Democracy?

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posted on Sep, 25 2012 @ 01:16 AM
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I apologize beforehand if my question is naive, or just downright stupid,
but I am going to go ahead and zip up my flame suit here.
There is something that I have wondered for so long and it seems to be a question one is not allowed to ask- people just get offended and don't answer it.
But we have some people here with a cool head that might be able to just explain to me without losing it.

I have always wondered why the US speaks of wanting to set up, encourage, or somehow help other countries become Democracies.

And yet, America itself is not a Democracy, and it's fundamental values that it was set up on and that the Constitution protect were anti-democratic. Our founding fathers believed that it was more important to defend the minority from the majority, the individual against the collective, and NOT let the majority run things.

They believed that ends up with the least educated, the least disciplined, population in charge- which is bad for the nation as a whole.

So why do they want to push other nations to have it?????
edit on 25-9-2012 by Bluesma because: (no reason given)




posted on Sep, 25 2012 @ 01:25 AM
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Originally posted by Bluesma
I apologize beforehand if my question is naive, or just downright stupid,
but I am going to go ahead and zip up my flame suit here.
There is something that I have wondered for so long and it seems to be a question one is not allowed to ask- people just get offended and don't answer it.
But we have some people here with a cool head that might be able to just explain to me without losing it.

I have always wondered why the US speaks of wanting to set up, encourage, or somehow help other countries become Democracies.

And yet, America itself is not a Democracy, and it's fundamental values that it was set up on and that the Constitution protect were anti-democratic. Our founding fathers believed that it was more important to defend the minority from the majority, the individual against the collective, and NOT let the majority run things.

They believed that ends up with the least educated, the least disciplined, population in charge- which is bad for the nation as a whole.

So why do they want to push other nations to have it?????
edit on 25-9-2012 by Bluesma because: (no reason given)


democracy does not mean what u think it to mean. democracy means "War". countries around the world have unique things they trade or use for trade and tourism. one country may have exotic spices.. another exotic cloths etc. in the US's case what u have to offer the world market is weapons. that's the only thing u have to export and the military force trained to use those weapons. so selling the weapons was just the first step. then ur government realized they can sell the military personnel with the weapons since their soldiers are just dogs anyway and can be used in commerce. the soldiers have become assets.. not in a human way.. but in an inanimate object sort of way.

So when next you hear about America spreading democracy and think it's about ppl's rights and values.. just look at your election process and how corrupt it is. the two party system just playing everyone against eachother when in fact democrats run both parties. and the president chosen for that year in a closed room about 10 years before anyone even voted. there's my 2 cents for ya.
edit on 25-9-2012 by 0mage because: (no reason given)



posted on Sep, 25 2012 @ 01:34 AM
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I ask the same question myself. It would seem that by the actions of many ME nations, many don't actually want democracy. So why are we trying to bring it to them. Surely the best thing would be to leave these countries develop on their own, without interviewing and promoting a system the majority either do not want or are not ready for.

I wonder if it's less about spreading democracy, more about spreading our influence of power under the guise of democracy. how can we expect democracy in Afghanistan, when we have already installed the president and his corrupt brother.



posted on Sep, 25 2012 @ 01:45 AM
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And yet, America itself is not a Democracy


America's a liberal democracy.

What you probably mean by democracy, is the literal, socialist 'rule of the masses', which is pure unadulterated nonsense. Read F.A Hayek's 'the fatal conceit'.



Our founding fathers believed that it was more important to defend the minority from the majority, the individual against the collective, and NOT let the majority run things.


Have you read the Federalist Papers? They tried to mix the two aspects. Ultimately, the Jeffersonian constitution sought to protect the rights of the individual over the collective, and indeed, really encouraged the particularism that has made American society so great.



posted on Sep, 25 2012 @ 01:58 AM
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Tricky stuff, good topic for a complicated discussion.

The American and Western value of democracy roots in the idea that each individual should have an opportunity to express their interests in government. However illusory our share of government is, it is generally accepted. (That's a whole topic in itself, because I believe if a person is active enough they can in fact effect the political process, most however choose to sit back)

So combined with the worlds most prolific economy and military, the belief in a superior societal model can lead to the desire to intervene in other nations. The problem is that America is selective in where we initiate regime change, with economic interests seemingly playing a factor. For example, there is no talk of overthrowing an oppressive monarchy in Saudi Arabia. The point, though, is that since the population truly believes that the Western system of government is in the best interests of people, the government can intervene and influence with little dissent.

I think it is correct to strive for a society in which each individual is represented in government. I am less sure on that belief justifying foreign intervention. The more effective means of liberating people from oppressive governance is probably selling them mass media technology and sharing ideas, as opposed to putting boots on the ground.

America as a democracy is not perfect, but has potential to approach a truly fair and empowering equally representative society. It is up to individuals to improve themselves, use voice beyond vote, and initiate a mass culture change toward increasing participation.

If this is done and Middle Eastern countries have access to information, then an example of a better America will lead other nations to strive for improvements themselves.

I think a person's best chance of improving a nation is to improve themselves, and a nations best chance at improving the world is also to improve within.

So, I agree with your point that America is overextending in many interventionist cases.
edit on 9/25/2012 by PatrickGarrow17 because: (no reason given)
edit on 9/25/2012 by PatrickGarrow17 because: (no reason given)



posted on Sep, 25 2012 @ 05:23 AM
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reply to post by 0mage
 


Hm. I hadn't thought of it in terms of economics and trade, that is an interesting viewpoint. Thanks for putting it up there.
My question, however, is more along the lines of the strange hypocrisy there-
" WE won't have democracy, it is bad.But we think OTHERS should!"



posted on Sep, 25 2012 @ 05:26 AM
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Originally posted by woodwardjnr
I ask the same question myself. It would seem that by the actions of many ME nations, many don't actually want democracy. So why are we trying to bring it to them. Surely the best thing would be to leave these countries develop on their own, without interviewing and promoting a system the majority either do not want or are not ready for.

I wonder if it's less about spreading democracy, more about spreading our influence of power under the guise of democracy. how can we expect democracy in Afghanistan, when we have already installed the president and his corrupt brother.


Especially- why do we want to bring something to others that we ourselves don't want?
That is suspicious. Even without examining the question of whether democracy is a good or bad thing, whenever I see someone trying to convice another to do something they themselves will not do, it attracts me to question their motives....



posted on Sep, 25 2012 @ 05:30 AM
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reply to post by Bluesma
 


Prof. John Mearsheimer's presentation will answer the question you've asked. It is, yes, a long video; nonetheless, it is well worth listening to if you wish to better understand some of the ideas that have driven U.S foreign policy.



I offer this brief synopsis in the event you're unable to watch the video.

You may recall that the reason often cited for the 11 Sep 2001 attacks had been compactly summarized as follows: They hate us because of our freedoms--who we are. That reason, however, neglects the more astute observation that U.S. foreign policy encourages violence, and so stands in opposition to promoting its ostensible purpose of promoting peace and stability

Prof. M. then goes on to suggest that from the beginning it was understood that U.S. foreign policy was the root cause of the 9-11 attacks, however, the grand strategy would not allow for this admission. So rather than modify U.S. foreign policy it became necessary to pursue a policy that modified external behaviors by "making them like us," so to speak.

That is Prof. M's theme, or his central thesis; and I agree with him. The thesis corresponds with an I.R. (international relations) idea that democracies do not go to war with each other; therefore, reshape nations into democracies. I think this idea, if I remember correctly, falls within the "realists" camp. At any rate I'm not convinced the idea is all that it is cracked up to be. Prof. H. H. Hoppe has cast doubt on democracy building with convincing effect (I'll not elaborate on his argument, but will post ref. if you're interested in reading them). Prof. Hoppe is probably a much more controversial figure ... but I do tend to agree with many of his insights as well.

In any case I think Prof. M. provides one of the best answers to your question in this video presentation.



posted on Sep, 25 2012 @ 05:42 AM
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Originally posted by dontreally


America's a liberal democracy.
What you probably mean by democracy, is the literal, socialist 'rule of the masses', which is pure unadulterated nonsense. Read F.A Hayek's 'the fatal conceit'.


Have you read the Federalist Papers? They tried to mix the two aspects. Ultimately, the Jeffersonian constitution sought to protect the rights of the individual over the collective, and indeed, really encouraged the particularism that has made American society so great.


We have a Republic, which has evolved through time to be able to be called a Democratic Republic.

I am glad you added a comment illustrating pure democracy as considered bad by the Americans-

It sometimes seems that many people are not aware of that, they use the word freely, assuming that democracy is considered "good" by everyone.

The Constitution attempted to keep democracy out, they felt that mob rule is just as threatening to freedom as a king would be.

In Federalists 63, Madison says representation "is sometimes necessary as a defense to the people against their own temporary errors and delusions.”

Since then, we made some Amendments through time, to move us a bit more towards a democratic Republic.

But the Revolution opened the door for certain landowners who wanted to rule the colonies themselves, take land from the Indians and make slavery legal, to do so. But it did NOT let a Democracy in.

So.... it makes me question why we think other lands should adopt a democracy (we never suggest a republic) when we ourselves felt it is not good?
edit on 25-9-2012 by Bluesma because: (no reason given)



posted on Sep, 25 2012 @ 05:53 AM
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reply to post by PatrickGarrow17
 


You said so much that is truly thought provoking.
As I made a point to some of the other responders here though, it seems to have been misunderstood that I am asking "why does America search to influence other countries? (get into their business) That, I understand, it is part of getting and having power.

But rather, I ask, why does a country that is a REPUBLIC, that was founded on the idea that Democracy = mob rule, and is a threat to freedom (people become victim to their own stupidity, lack of knowledge, and herd instinct) not then desire other countries to do like them, and also become Republics?

I always find it suspicious when someone wants to offer another a drink from a cup they themselves won't drink from!

So, slightly associated with some of what you brought up, as far as access to technology and communication for the peoples,

Consider the way our society, since WW2, has created a huge power for the media and for corporations, which exceeds that of the government, through using our knowledge of the subconscious desires and the way they can be manipulated. (à la sauce Bernays)......


So..... if the mob has the power...... and they are watching our commercials...... what would you get then, hmmmm?????

edit on 25-9-2012 by Bluesma because: (no reason given)



posted on Sep, 25 2012 @ 05:55 AM
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reply to post by Kovenov
 


Thanks Kovenov, for the video and well thought out reply!
I will take the time to watch it and respond later!



posted on Sep, 25 2012 @ 01:37 PM
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reply to post by Kovenov
 





John Mearsheimer's


I lost all respect for Mearsheimer after he co-wrote that anti-Israel screed 'the israel lobby'...



posted on Sep, 26 2012 @ 08:41 AM
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reply to post by Bluesma
 


This link explains it.

www.youtube.com...



posted on Sep, 26 2012 @ 09:09 AM
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They want to bring democracy to these countries because they have been indoctrinated into the false ideology that thats what these countries need to develop. But reality has shown that democracy is inappropriate for countries in which there is, for instance an illiteracy rate of 70%, Democracy, which is socialism-lite, only works in super-high-IQ and super-rich nations such as Norway. What undeveloped countries need is Putin-style hardline conservativism until they reach a level where they can read, spell and do math, then you can unleash "power to the people"-democracy on them. What political system is appropriate depends on the development level of a nation.
edit on 26-9-2012 by Skyfloating because: (no reason given)



posted on Sep, 26 2012 @ 09:16 AM
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You bring up a really interesting point....I'll confess I never really gave it much thought.

I assumed, (perhaps naively) that when our govt spoke of bring "democracy" to other nations they were referring to switching nations from dictatorships to nations where citizens could vote. Or nations that had pseudo democratic elections in which the people's votes were not truly counted and the same war lords or corrupt parties won regardless....I thought those were the nations our govt was trying to get to become democratic.

And I do not think our govt was pushing direct democracy(mob rule) but rather they hoped that representative democracy would win out. But they made it seem like any type of democracy was better than fascist rule by force.....at least that is how i understood it.

Now, my question is....is that truly the case? Is that really what our govt wants for these nations? If so, why? If not, then why?

I'm afraid I have no answers to your question.....really just more questions, but hopefully some ATSers will come along and help with this thread, because I think it is a topic that needs to be addressed, S&F.



posted on Sep, 29 2012 @ 01:28 AM
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reply to post by dontreally
 


Yes well, there are academics/intellectuals whom I do not respect per se, and yet I try to be open to ideas because even those I disagree with will occasionally offer insights that I'd neither considered nor appreciated.
edit on 29-9-2012 by Kovenov because: typo
edit on 29-9-2012 by Kovenov because: typo x2



posted on Sep, 29 2012 @ 01:59 AM
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reply to post by Mijamija
 


Well, since I wrote this, I have discussed it with others and someone told me that my problem here is that I am focusing on the exact correct terms too much (which I tend to do, in general).

There are words that are used loosely by the public, because the subtle distinctions they either aren't aware of, or simply don't matter to them.
They also evolve this way through time, loosing some of their original meaning.

The word "Democracy" is used this way, casually. Many people do not even know the difference between a direct democracy and a representative democracy.

It was explained to me that for the general public a contrast is mde between a dictatorship and democracy, that's all. In the same way we are led to consider lots of other things as black and white- you are either left or right, colored or white, straight or gay, the biggest world power or a third world country, salty or sweet, good or evil, etc. etc.

This seems to be one of those, where it pushes people to make a choice quicker without too much thought.
I tend to see everything on a continuum, and so terms indicate very specific points on that line in between the extremes, so they are important to me. But not so to most people, I was told.

My attention being drawn to this question though, is something that I don't want to ignore, because sometimes that is how my intuition tries to tell me there is more to it than meets the eye. I might start out chasing the wrong detail, but it might get me there anyway. And it did, here.

For one-
_________________________________________
The original intents and goals of the founding fathers were not what many people today think. They did not want Democracy, and the reason we have it today is because the Constitution was ADDED on to over the centuries, to make it possible! I thought more people knew that- apparently not. At this time, with everyone acting like it is Sacred and not to be touched, it might be a good idea to remind them of this.
___________________________________________


Two-

___________________________________________
This made me suddenly see some of the hidden agenda my intuition was sniffing out. Our real masters in the western world are the corporations- we live in a Corporatocracy. The government and the military are simply doing the dirty work for them, and being the visible targets to blame.

Democracy enables them to get in and take the power over a country, through manipulating the subconscious drives of the people.

One could argue that we get manipulated anyway, no matter what the power is above us.
To try to split that into the view of two opposites or extremes.... manipulation that is acknowledged openly, or that is done covertly?

For me, in the long run, the biggest difference is that the actors of covert manipulation can avoid being held responsible for their acts. They get the power without the responsibility.
edit on 29-9-2012 by Bluesma because: (no reason given)





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