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Tribesmen were informed through mosque loudspeakers early Saturday that no woman would be allowed to leave home and cast a vote, according to a local resident in North Waziristan’s main town of Miranshah.
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Reagan was a neocon technically, but the whole free-market thing and the general promotion of ‘American values’ is liberal to the nth degree. The US political scene isn’t quite as homogeneous as it is here in the UK, but both major parties fundamentally agree on economic matters at least.
And claiming you want commoners to have a direct say in the workings of government is Marxist, my friend…
Hardly. The only thing Marxist about it is the adherence to an ideal above the people, or even reality.
Direct democracy is an election — voting — and although this is a very good thing it is a very inefficient thing. As I used to be fond of pointing out, if left to a vote America would have had national healthcare years ago… only to abolish it… only to bring it back… only to abolish it…
What I talked about was representative democracy, the closest thing to actual existence in America being the Jury — Jury Duty. You get a summons, you show up and if they need you and nobody challenges you as possibly prejudicial to one side of the case, you sit for the duration.
The greatest foreseeable issue with such a system, applied to a government body, would be a rise of the bureaucrats, the ascension of the Civil Servant above citizen and office holder alike.
As a Brit you’re probably blind to it, but in the U.K. the civil servants hold most of the power… plus they swear an oath to the royal family, not the people. With term limits here the civil servants could become as powerful as they are in the U.K., and with a jury duty type system they could potentially become even more powerful (if that is at all possible).
See, if you replace career professionals with temporary common people, the office holders would rely more & more on the civil servants to guide them through the system, explain the rules… explain what all the legal jargon means… tell them what is and isn’t possible. This has already surpassed the joke point in the U.K. (though, oddly, most Brits will insist that the opposite is true), and it’s something that freshman members of congress complain about.
…one story was from a member discussing his first committee meeting. Someone was testifying before the committee, and as a member he asked a few questions. Afterwards the committee staff (the civil servants) were all upset because he had asked questions when they hadn’t prepared any for him! Yes, the civil servants were telling the congressmen what questions to ask. THAT’S POWER!
And, yes, they would become even more powerful with a jury duty type system…
Which brings us back to terms limits.
Term limits are touted as the solution to the problem. The good politicians, or so we are told, will keep rising higher & higher into new offices (taking their experience with them) while the bad politicians will eventually reach their level of incompetence and be pushed out. So, in theory at least, the longer they’re in office the LESS reliant they are on the civil servants, and the more power the representatives of the people have…
Fact is, there is no “Good” solution to any problem, and any true liberal knows this. Marxists & Conservatives alike have their dogmas, while liberals are mired in the here & now, the reality we all must face and the lives that people are living…
There are no good solutions. Some are better than others, one may be the best amongst all the known alternatives, but none are good. All have flaws, which brings me to something the (Liberal) Democrats used to say a lot when I was a kid:
“Any jackass can kick down a barn, but it takes a carpenter to build one.”
The meaning, of course, is that it’s real easy to complain about people, parties or ideas, but it’s damn hard to come up with a good party, person or idea. Most political arguments melt down to a smearing of the other side in the lame belief that, assuming you can tear them down, by default your side will have to be the alternative.
….but your side — whatever that side may be — is just as imperfect, just as easily torn down as their side was.
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