So, my last post (Just Sayin: How A Democracy Would Go To War) turned out to be waaaaay more timely than I’d planned.
That’s probably not a good thing.
I’m not trying to be timely.
I decided to start writing here as a form of self-imposed therapy, to try to get myself to focus on the fact that there are solutions to the things that bother me about the world and to focus less on the fact that very little actually gets solved.
(My other approach is a diaspora* account , Awesome Itemz and the associated Twitter account, where I try to only write about things that are awesome to make myself focus on the positive side of things. It’s difficult.)
And then this comes along. Hello this.
So let’s take a moment to consider whether, gauged against the system I suggested yesterday, the United States does a decent job of being a democracy.
(Spoiler alert: it does very, very badly.)
I suggested that a democracy would go to war via ballot, with the costs and responsibility for waging the war to be borne entirely by those who voted in favor.
Instead, we have one man, one vote: he’s the man, he has the vote.
The United States, in contrast, has very probably just started another war by the decision of one person who received well less than half the votes in the election by which he took the Presidency. The war will be paid for from the general tax funds and will be waged by the shrinking pool of volunteers and (if the recent past is any guide) a larger force of mercenaries.
So, wrong on pretty much all counts then.
(That’s not even considering that, per the actual Constitution, the Presidency doesn’t even have the power to start a war on it’s own initiative; the fact that the United States largely ignores its Constitution is a whole ‘nother barrel of monkeys.)
The United States today is really less a democracy than a sort of serial autocracy.
Which is appropriate (I guess) since our primary social relationship is serial monogamy.