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Mikel Hansen

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As population increases and voting rates remain extremely low, is it realistic to maintain a capitalistic democratic government economicaly?

As population grows and corporations become more and more influential in politics, is it realistic to maintain our limited government involvement economically?

And yes economically has two l's unfortunately my character space was limited. :(

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  • Apr 21 2014: Who cares about voting rates when you have just two options out of which both are chosen by same set of special interests and differ between each other on mocked up grounds?

    During communism totalitarian regime in Yugoslavia there were elections where you could choose between two or more communist party candidates and people didn't go to elections because it was the same who got elected - the communist party policy would be continued and the people had no say in it,

    in US you now have elections in which you can choose between two corporate-approved candidates and people don't go to elections because it's pretty much the same who gets elected, the corporate-approved policy would be continued and the people have no say in it


    PS http://www.princeton.edu/~mgilens/Gilens%20homepage%20materials/Gilens%20and%20Page/Gilens%20and%20Page%202014-Testing%20Theories%203-7-14.pdf
    • Apr 21 2014: Very well thought out and excellent examples Borna, you have as clear a picture of the problem as I have heard and I whole hardly concur with all your observations. We are in fact corporate slaves just as the Yugoslavia people were slaves of communism except I believe they were more aware as the communist do not pretend to be otherwise. Where as in America both the slaves and the slave holders continue to pretend it is a democracy because it sounds better than a dictatorship. And no the president is not "the" dictator, he is also a slave just higher up on the chain, World Bank owners are the dictators in this country and the entire world. The "New" World Order, names like Rothschild, Morgan, Rockefeller. America was bought and sold years ago and now they are in the process of breaking it up and selling it off to the higher bidder, piece by piece. They are carefully keeping the military industrial complex in tack because it is the ultimate force used whenever necessary to accomplish there goals anywhere in the world, and they do it in the name of Democracy, just like Religion commits it's crime in the name of God. Whenever the spotlight shines on them they quickly become the three monkeys, hear no evil, say no evil and see no evil, and the rest of the world says "oh look the cute little monkeys, how adorable".
      • Apr 23 2014: Either party loses its corporate donors, it will go down. At least the Republicans lie less about that. Of course, that means our choices are still between Cthulhu and Nyarlathotep.
        • Apr 23 2014: I only see two sides of the same turd, both sides stink.
        • May 1 2014: Bryan, Thank you for the effort.
          The corporate donors are the most important.
          Truly we have no choices.

          I never had the pleasure of reading the author's characterizations.
          I don't think I had the time to waste.
          And I had a lot of time to spend.
      • Apr 24 2014: Obviously, literary allusions are lost in the present era.
    • May 1 2014: Borna, You are smarter than the superior bear.
      The average bear is hiding from your glow.
    • May 1 2014: I see you stopped leaving "reply" on your comments (down below). Why?
      This is a debate, or am I wrong?

      Do you know who runs the Democrat and Republican Parties?
      The masters of Americans? Black, White, Green or Blue...
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    Apr 17 2014: Mikel,

    I am a little confused. Your header is one question and your statement is a different question.

    As to the first, I cant see the relationship of the first phrase with the second...population? voting rates? What or how would this effect the maintenance of government... what ever it's form?

    As to the second, more population it is likely more people to form more corporations. As far as corporate influence in politics, that has been always a question in my mind as corporations by design are groups of people who gather to create goods or services with the intent of making a profit. I guess it would be fair to say that one group of people could politically attempt to influence political situations. It has been done. But why would government be involved economically on either a limited basis or some greater level? Are you suggesting that government should invest or transfer funds in some manner to sustain political influence?

    Of course, I am not that familiar with a capitalistic democratic government. I am more familiar with our government which is a constitutional republic. The is no clause in the constitution which establishes the form of economic activity with in the country. I do believe that in early America, the citizens of that time found capitalism was a preferred economic method. OK.
    So, what was your question?
    • Apr 21 2014: I agree that, in theory, the government of the USA is supposed to be a Republic (constitutionally-limited representative government led by an elected official). However, "capitalist democratic" isn't too bad an approximation of how things too often work in the USA, regardless of how things are supposed to work. An unwitting "alliance" of "the mob" and corporate interests often coalesces to defeat any Republican ideals.
  • Gord G 50+

    • +1
    May 1 2014: Population size is not the deciding factor. The level of apathy determines the strength of a democracy. Apathy is the opposite of revolution. It represents the level at which comfort is slightly greater than discontent.
  • Apr 17 2014: At this point is seems China has the most successful system. No country or system has moved 600 million people from poverty to middle c;ass in such a short time. To us per person income of China may look low but it has more purchasing power for most Chinese. We pay several time more then them for middle class lifestyle, Besides still most chines have their parents and even adult children form one household. It is changing in big cities but still for majority it is joint family that has lesser cost for same purchasing power. Most third world people like to live live in joint family unlike us.
    • Apr 21 2014: Raj,

      could you cite your reference concerning 600 million moving from poverty to the middle class?
        • Apr 22 2014: thanks checked out the 2 talks -

          1. eric li - not sure, he is selling china (not say bad but that is what i got from the talk) want investment money to manage.

          2. Hans rosling - interesting stats but log log and averages give indications, like correlation factors, but does not indicate trends or causality - for trends need it over time and need linkage for causality.
      • Apr 21 2014: WAYNE

        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Poverty_in_China

        WIKIPEDIA states that since 1981 (opening up of China and starting relations with USA)

        Like USA poverty rate does not define that the level or that all the people above that have equal life style. Just like us there is last expanse of middle class there like us that struggle to pay the bills or send their kids to decent school.

        Poverty is higher away from the cities. Good news for China is that by 2030 the 80 % of the people will be in big cities and lots of services will be more accessible like in USA

        thanks
        RAJ

        THANKS
        raj
        • Apr 22 2014: Raj,

          thanks - i always think of wikipedia as a good starting point with a grain of salt and need more research. I was reading some of the comments of the talks that Borna suggested above, I found that the comments from people from China most interesting.
    • Apr 21 2014: The USA has a lower Gini coefficient than does China. Likewise, the average family in China lives on between $3,000-$3,500 (roughly) a year, using purchasing power parity and not "exchange rates", which are heavily manipulated. I would hardly call living on that little per year to be "middle class". There is a great deal of wealth in Chinese cities, but it is heavily concentrated, and there is very little wealth in the Chinese countryside. According to the World Bank, about 27% of the population of China lives on $2 or less per day.
      • May 16 2014: Bryan

        Purchase power parity applies under equal level of lifestyle.

        If parents, couple, their son and his wife and two children, seven people live in same house, cook and eat jointly, use one vehicle adjusting each others need the resulting savings is beyond purchase power parity. That family living like USA will need three residences, baby sitter, three kitchen and buying lots of ready made foods. This is how third world lives. Kids are not kicked out of the house at 18 or once education is done. They stay jointly in same place as before.
  • Apr 16 2014: NO! Impose dictatorship! Appoint me God-Emperor with full executive, legislative, and judicial authority plus personal extraterritoriality, personal extralegality, personal extraconstitutionality, and permanent emergency powers.

    Any other solution would be stupid, since I am the only person who could be trusted to replace "capitalist democratic government". At least, I'm the only person *I* would trust to do it. If you don't trust me to that level, you're being sensible, since the only person *YOU* could trust to replace "capitalistic democratic government" would have to be you.

    "No one pretends that democracy is perfect or all-wise. Indeed, it has been said that democracy is the worst form of government except all those other forms that have been tried from time to time." Winston Churchill, speech in House of Commons, 1947.
    • Apr 21 2014: Thing is.. There are alternatives.

      Dictatorships work a lot better then democracy in the long run when the dictator is person of integrity, but the risks of getting the wrong one are all too known.

      And "democracy" is a very broad term by itself: what we usually conceive as "democracy" is in fact "electoral democracy", a legacy from the Roman empire in which the senate was conceived so the oligarchy could make mutually satisfying decisions - not to enforce the will of the people and this is what we see today.

      Actual democracy in Athens did not have an exclusive body into which you could not enter without the approval of the oligarchy structures, in Athens random people were chosen for the disruptive and stressful duty of making operative decisions for the rest of the nation and after 1 year they would be returned back into their old positions - carpenters, fishermen...

      Actual democracy worked like jury duty - ruling the nation was not something you wished for to get famous or rich or powerful, it was a duty to the people that was imposed on you.

      Long term decisions were made by popular vote of all the population - we have the technology today to do this at scale btw, but the the oligarchy would not like this one bit.

      The best ruling system I have so far seen in practice (in a virtual community heh) involved a despot with absolute power and a democratic structure beneath him, the despot rarely ever took action and only to set long term development goals, settle disputes and force people to behave when institutional corruption would start appearing, he kind of behaved like this Lao Tzu quote http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/l/laotzu121709.html

      Now only if there were a way to export that....
      • Apr 21 2014: There is no such thing as a dictator with integrity.

        "A leader is best when people barely know he exists, when his work is done, his aim fulfilled, they will say: we did it ourselves" - Lao Tzu http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/l/laotzu121709.html
        • Apr 21 2014: That's a hard statement Rodrigo :)

          And a false one,


          I'll just throw a couple names by wit that might fit the bill of "dictator with integrity"

          Joseph II of Habsburg, Suleiman I of Otoman Empire, James I of England, Cyrus II of Persia, Frederic the Great of Prussia, Peter the Great of Russia, Mustafa Kemal Ataturk of Turkey, ....
        • Apr 21 2014: All of those men actually planted noxious weeds. All of their countries, after their reigns, either degenerated to tiresome repetitions of oppression and stagnation or, in the case of England, underwent violent political convulsions to ultimately purge themselves of the poison of dictatorship.
        • Apr 23 2014: Dear Brian, *all* is such a heavy and (usually) wrong word :)

          Please bear in mind I used the word "candidates" there, my argument is valid if you find one of those in the list which is a positive persona, not if you find one of the list which was not a positive persona
      • Apr 21 2014: Please cite the evidence to prove that the Athenian system is "actual" democracy, meaning all others are just fakes. Let me guess, you're indulging in the logical fallacy of "first out the gate", in which the first thing called by a name has automatic claim on being the only "true" form.
        • Apr 21 2014: No Bryan,

          Athenian democracy wasn't better then what we have today just because it was first ;)

          I consider it better for many today's use cases because it dealt with officials corruption in a pretty interesting way.

          Think about it:

          1. how many senates of the world would be better, how many would be worse of if they had a randomly chosen 200 members of the electorate instead of the "cream members of top political parties"
          2. how corruptible would random-chosen members of the population be in their governing duties if they knew that in one year they would be back in their old life and answer to their friends, families, work colleagues and neighbors?

          This principle had a couple more interesting consequences - such as more interest in politics for the average joe and more drive to make sure everybody is as educated as they can be.


          I'm not saying "we should all go athens-style" - we shouldn't -

          introducing that kind of responsibility on members of a nation that has consistently destroyed its education like the US of A would be a disaster, but it may be a place to draw inspiration from for some other parts of the world
      • Apr 23 2014: The Athenian system defined "citizen" very differently than it is defined in any modern civilized country. Those eligible for office were not the "ordinary men" of Athens. First, they were all men. Second, they all had some substantial property. Ordinary tradesmen? Not citizens. Ordinary craftsmen? Not citizens. Laborers? Not citizens. Slaves? Certainly not citizens. The selection was by random lot, but the pool for selection was already the elite.
        • Apr 23 2014: Your post is correct on some accounts even though I'm not 100% certain on the relevance of it for the discussion,

          the ruling body of athens was not quite the elite according to wikipedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Athenian_democracy#Citizenship_in_Athens - this article explicitly states that material wealth was not a consideration - just being male, athenian, not slave and passed obligatory military training.

          Can you cite your source?

          And what's the relevance? Surely you aren't saying that athenian model worked just because women weren't allowed to vote? :o)
      • Apr 25 2014: Speaking of dictators; where is the fearless leader of this conversation in all this? I'm still curious to hear the agenda behind this conversations founding question.
    • Apr 23 2014: Bryan,

      It's NOW time to actually employ a better form of government that is perfect and all-wise based on enriching integrity that be sustainable-desirable-congruent with life ways; in theory in practice in actuality! Rather than enforce the arbitrary subjective will of the people we better 'implement' what be right to do. Evidently this begs the question: "How to actually determine what be right"?

      Taking and expanding on something Borna sort of pointed out :
      ruling is not something wished for to get famous or rich or powerful, it be a duty to do as it ought to be done!

      Said in a different form if one wants to get the claim right one better do it right for only the right claim gets to be the right claim! To claim what be right; is not something wished for, it be a task to do as it ought to be done!

      Now what is meant by 'a capitalistic democratic government'?
      While we delve into the notion of 'capitalistic', I wonder if the idea -to maintain something economically -- fit's into what be capitalism? Seems to me that -to maintain something economically - be the antithesis of to make an economic profit from something! IF capitalism be an economic and political system in which a country's trade and industry are controlled by private owners for profit, rather than by the state THEN it follows that a capitalistic government is an oxymoronic claim. Adding to that the notion of democratic further obfuscate the matters in my perception. Thus my inquiry what is meant by 'a capitalistic democratic government'?
  • May 13 2014: That is a beautiful question.
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    May 6 2014: Democracy is a good idea on paper; but it is very easy for pseudo-democracy to look like the one on paper while at the same time doing all the evils it blames on other forms of government.

    There has to be government on earth. Very soon, any form of government that is not what it is or what it should be, will scheme itself out of power.
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    May 5 2014: Do you have independent views ?
    Do you have values you believe in ?
    Are you ready for hard work ?
    If so, you can introduce an alternative in the elections.
  • May 3 2014: "Capitalist" and "democratic" refer to two different social constructs that sometimes but don't always overlap. I think the idea that we are a true representative democracy, or that a true representative democracy could actually exist is, in itself, flawed. As far as the United States is concerned the study referenced in this(1) article shows that statistically, there is a far stronger correlation between the agenda of elites and government policy than the populist agenda and government policy. Specifically it points out - when the agenda of the elites conflict with the desires of the majority public, the majority ALWAYS loses. So, we don't have a democracy. As a side note, we don't really have a capitalist system either, as a large number of industries are actually controlled by colluding oligopolies, which are functionally equivalent to monopolies.

    We don't have a democracy, and we don't have capitalism - at least we don't have worry about losing something we don't have, right?

    (1) http://talkingpointsmemo.com/livewire/princeton-experts-say-us-no-longer-democracy
  • May 1 2014: NO
    Only if you go to War against the lowest the annual economic scale of nations.
    Keep in mind, that going to War and winning are two different things.

    Genocides and killing youthful members of War participants keep populations in check.

    Some history for those of you who want to find the truth.
    There is a listing by each year, on Wikipedia. Look it up. Then match it to the listings on Wikipedia,
    of opponents that the United States warred against each year. It is fairly easy to see that the United States,
    with only a couple of exceptions, has warred upon the opponents holding the bottom rank on the annual
    economic scale of nations. Many of the nation's and organizations who were US opponents, had their
    nation's names changed, new government's installed, or have been eliminated.

    (This is coming off the top of my head, please forgive me, but I have not copied the links for you to verify
    this to be true. I consume so much data every day, and need it much later, like this, I just tend to forget.)

    We human beings who populate this planet, are liken to Army Ants. We do terrible things to one another.
    We name it Enforcement.
  • Apr 30 2014: People are so disgusted with American politics that they refuse to vote. They've come to realise that it doesn't matter WHO is in office; it's all the same. The rich get richer and the overwhelming majority of poor are getting poorer. Government has meely become an arm of Wall Street and CEO's.
  • Apr 25 2014: Hi, I live in Venezuela, and a capitalistic economy is the best for anyone. Of course government should do social stuff like helping people giving then the tools to make then able to get a job and a house, things like that. The economy in my country is too bad because socialism is not good economically talking so.....
  • Apr 23 2014: Your question states that the U.S. has a democratic government and capitalistic economy. The U.S. has a Republican Government. For reference refer to the U.S. Constitution. As for capitalistic economy existing in the US is false. The U.S. has a mixed economy-mixture of mostly socialism and some minor capitalism. The controls in the economy were in put by the majority of citizens through government legislation. The actual case is that government is too involved in the economy therefore, impeding private citizen's innovation and competition.
  • Apr 22 2014: Wayne:
    :
    What ever fudge factor may be there is no doubt of extra ordinary progress in China. No one in economics disputing that, We have to recognize and respect when foreign countries do good. If we do not we are not such a great. Humility is the most precious quality of ones greatness.
  • Apr 21 2014: BRYAN

    In Omaha, NE if I am making 50000 dollar a year I will be happy. in Manhattan NY, I will struggle to find a studio apartment for 50000 a year.

    If in USA three or four generations live together that can be 5-10 people, which is normal they can do better than 50000 Omaha dude. I make 95 % of food that I eat at home. My gas and heat is included with my rent. I eat like a king. My friend who lives in other apartment in same building he never cooks and many time orders in. His average food bill is $ 25 a day. I ma happy and he is happy. I eat lot more fresh vegetables, flat bread from flour, lot so beans that I like. I cook about 200 different dishes and it makes me very happy to eat my own cooked food that is sugar, salt and chemical reduced to great level than my friend. Imagine rent per person, washing cost per person. Imagine driving a bike compared to car and cost. Here to go to work on bike is a style. There it is normal life.

    I bet 3000 dollar that is 20000 Chinese currency they live lot better that 40000 dollar family income in Chicago. Many many family live with lots lesser income. Lots of Latin immigrant lives on lot less after the cost of Chicago and having a wife and 2-3 children with wife often not skilled in cooking or neither works or cooks.

    Bryan, you have to study lo more culture beyond statistics. In any country middle class is defined by that countries statistics and that of USA. European middle class do not live like American Middle class. Less meat, poultry, eggs, living space, smaller cars. less driving, less eating out, less clothes, less toys. In Italy and Spain it is still lesser.

    Currently in India with 810 Million registered voters, and 70 % expected voting participation and voting by machine. No problems so far. talk about USA less that 150 M and we have problems.

    I have been to China, India, Kenya, Tanzania, Nigeria. My life style is expensive compared to their normal in food. You got to go and see the world.
    • Apr 23 2014: Go look up "purchasing power parity". I was very careful in the choice of my terms. Too bad you're too ignorant to understand me.
      • Apr 23 2014: Appreciate compliment. I am just mentally retarded..
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    Apr 21 2014: Two things come to mind ... First: Politicians have two goals only 1. Get elected and 2. Get reelected; Second that nations have goals, interests, and needs.

    One of the first things we must do to consider your question is to define the parties involved. The two major Democratic and Republician and the lessor known Independent and Liberterians. There are others but these are the major attention getters.

    The Chairman of the Communist Party USA stated "I no longer have to run for office ... the Democrats have adopted our cause". It is my opinion that the Democrats are now Liberal / Socialists. They adopted Keynesian economics which supports big government with centeral control and spending without regard to either budget or projected income.

    Republicians are Conservative and adopted Austrian Budget which says that spending must be balanced and budgeted to insure stability and growth and that government must remain small with the power resting in the several states.

    Independents tend to think for themselves and select the lessor of the evils that run for office.

    Libertarians place liberty as the highest political end. This includes emphasis on the primacy of individual liberty, political freedom, and voluntary association. They are somewhat divided on other issues. Please look up defination for yourself to ensure full understanding.

    These are my assessments and not carved in stone. (Be aware I am Independent).

    So we come to the question. Elections are about brainwashing and finances ... seldom about issues. The money comes from Banks, corporations, and super donors. The winner owes these people. They could care less about the common man. Our elected are the elite and no longer represent you and me ... they make laws to allow them to be corrupt ... it is our fault ... we are a Republic and need to return to a Constitutional government.

    Thus voting has a small impact ... the power is elsewhere. Egos and greed rule.

    Bob.
  • Apr 19 2014: Population expansion is largely related to economy and lack of human rights, most especially, women's rights; impoversihed girls and women have no rights = children delivering children. Time has proven that liberated, educated people with opportunity to grow/realise their ambitions etc choose to have fewer and even no children - birth rates fall, population stabilises. But then, another problem is identified = an aging population. However, with advanced knowledge of nutrition & human body's true needs, we know an alkaline-rich diet will improve our health and physical longevity i.e. thinning bones etc are due to very high acidic-diet - we eat 80% acidic & 20% alkaline - in reality we should eat 70% alkaline & 30% acidic - so no wonder we're all falling apart by age 60+. I think we could solve the problem of an 'aging population' by making sure we are super-fit. Maybe we need to think more about what we're actually voting FOR - is what's on offer right now really worth a vote?
  • Apr 19 2014: Mikel

    You speak of a 'limited government involvement economically'. This is not currently America. I believe you are speaking of what was and not what is. With the government take over of the health care system, mortgage and banking institutions and the shutting down of the coal industry, not to mention the strangle hold on oil production; we do not have a limited government. The list continues for government encroachment, not only into our personal lives, but education, communications and obviously the minor problem of spying on the citizenry.
    Limited government in America is no longer. We have a very big and very controlling entity that waves an American flag, but looks more and more like a hammer and sickle.
    "When the people find that they can vote themselves money, that will herald the end of the republic." Ben Franklin
    The men who founded this country and wrote it's founding documents well understood the greed and weakness of people, as we are seeing today in America under the guise of something called social justice.
    Democracy cannot retain freedom due to the obvious fact that to many people want what they have not earned, what they do not deserve and government becomes a willing tool to provide these gifts of welfare and cell phones in exchange for their votes.
    Another great quote by one Karl Marx, "Democracy is the only road to socialism." And would it not follow that, "Socialism is the only road to Marxism."
    Your question, I think, is essentially academic and even rhetorical; humorous, perhaps.
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      Apr 21 2014: Charles,
      You got me. I was politely trying to say that this conversation was difficult for me to understand and address. I thought there might be something here... so I was hoping for clarification.

      I also understand you concern about what the country has become.... some have said we were a constitutional republic, but have we become an oligarchy?.
      Several things have happened to form the perfect storm. First, our public education system has failed too many of our youth. Then some have found they can make fortunes bribing elected officials. This is often done by lobbyists making campaign contributions. Then there are the elected, who assume a mantel of superiority after subsequent elections or coronations.
      We have basically eliminated one house of congress and now have a upper and lower house of representatives... we have given the congress unlimited taxing powers, and they have used it to the fullest.
      and my favorite.... from law school 101.... "any law that can be interpreted, is no law at all" and there must be a thousand of them.
      .
      • Apr 21 2014: Hello Mike

        I would seem that we have agreement in some areas.
        My understanding of an oligarchy, Marxism, Communism, Fascism, Nazism or any other type of totalitarian rule, is that they are essentially all the same, totalitarian. Therefore, it really does not matter. In all such forms of rule there will be the wealthy elite, oligarchs, who will stand with or behind a figure head. Hitler, Mussolini, Stalin all had such people behind the scenes.
        For some, after the accumulation a few billion it is no longer a drive for wealth, but a drive for power over others, as a sense of omnipotence takes over the personality.For others no money is required, only an agenda for the accumulation of power over others. All promise a promise of a utopia free of all negative human traits, a chicken in every pot and pot in every hand.

        There are some who will fault capitalism for this, but the fault is the peoples desire to get something for nothing, as the saying, 'You can't cheat an honest man." Detroit is a shinning example of that reality

        In the early 60's I was in Europe and spent a lot of time in London pubs and Paris coffee shops talking and arguing politics and religion with the locals. Many were hard core Communists and outlined several different plans that would destabilize the US and destroy it. No war was involved.
        Being naive I dismissed their rants with the fervent belief that Americans were much stronger and we had the Constitution.
        In that late 70's I began to notice the materialization of many of these plans. They can be found here, http://www.uhuh.com/nwo/communism/comgoals.htm
        Lobbyists are not the bad guy here, although I understand your point. It is the publicly elected and trusted politician, who values greed and power over the people and the Constitution. The politician who then parcels out crumbs to his greedy constituents, the people.
        • Apr 21 2014: Your understanding of totalitarianism is flawed. What you label as totalitarianism is much closer to authoritarianism, which often uses "figureheads" to enact the wishes of an oligarchy. What authoritarianism wants is servile order. Authoritarian states have abandoned Great Causes and only pay lip service to them or trot them out when politically convenient. Totalitarian states, on the other hand, are almost always dictatorships of personality. There is a coiterie around the Leader, but they are all severely flawed or limited individuals who each look to the Leader to make things work. In an authoritarian state the leader can easily be replaced with no glitches. In a totalitarian state, losing the Leader is usually a disaster.

          An authoritarian state can outwardly embrace a totalitarian philosophy. But no matter how much the PRC calls itself "communist", it is a bureaucratic, authoritarian polity, not a revolutionary, totalitarian place. Authoritarians are in for the long haul. Totalitarians have to conquer the world or they will go down within a single generation--usually much sooner. That being said, authoritarian states can have goons and dupes who adopt totalitarian philosophy, but the goons and dupes are kept away from running the government.

          One big exception to the inherent instability of totalitarianism is North Korea, but it is maintained by keeping up a feeling of a constant state of war vs. South Korea and the USA and propped up by China.
  • Apr 18 2014: What has voting got to do with anything? “It’s not who votes that counts, it’s who counts the votes”- Joseph Stalin
    So much for so-called Democracy. Let me ask you: Did you vote on having all your personal information sold to the highest bidder? Did you vote on the NSA recording everything everybody in the entire world says and does? Did you vote on using are military to bully the entire world into turning their resources over to the One World Order through corporations? You live in Las Vegas, did you vote on your energy and water bills skyrocking because they are sending both to California from your backyard (Lake Mead and Hoover Dam)?
    Democracy? What we have does not even remotely resemble a Democracy. Russia, China and the good ole USA are looking more and more alike, "all" ruled by Corporations which are themselves ruled by Banking. Now there is a true democracy, the banks get together and caste their vote as to how the "New World Order" will rule.

    Any more questions? By the way are you really a linebacker #65?
    • Apr 21 2014: "if elections could change anything, we would not be allowed to do it"
    • Apr 21 2014: Democracy? Isn't that two wolves and a lamb voting on supper?
      • Apr 21 2014: "Dictatorship of the majority over the minority" ? :)
        • Apr 21 2014: Democracy is "dictatorship of the majority". This is why the authors of the US Constitution intentionally limited the power of the majority--they did not want a democracy and denounced the idea of instituting a democracy.
      • Apr 21 2014: More like two wolves with AK47's and a thousand lambs with the two wolves deciding what is going to be for dinner and sport. The difference is animals unlike humans don't kill everything just because they can, they only kill for survival and only what they need for survival.
        • Apr 21 2014: You are completely distorting the model. Democracy is majority rule, and if the majority wants something evil, then democracy will produce an evil outcome. This is one reason why democracy is a bad idea and every country that has adopted some democratic method but not descended into mob rule has constitutional limits on the power of democracy. Likewise, abandon your childish superstitions about what "animals" do "unlike humans". I have personally witnessed raccoons go on killing sprees, where they go from target to target, killing and killing. Then they eat a bit and leave all the rest to rot. The idea that humans are fundamentally different in behavior from all other animal species (we are animals) is just a childish superstition. The major difference between how we treat "the environment" and how other animals treat "the environment" is that we're merely far better at doing what all animal species try to do.
      • Apr 21 2014: Bryan if you trying to be friendly then I suggest you try another approach because calling other people offensive names is probably not going to have effect you desire. Whether you are right or wrong most people at this point will just stop talking with you. Good luck.
        • Apr 25 2014: Therefore, according to you, substance means nothing. All that matters is having a good shuck-and-jive game. So long as one has a good advertising campaign, nothing else matters. Truth does not matter. Reason does not matter. Logic does not matter. Facts do not matter. All that matters is putting on a good facade. If that is how things really work, then the world deserves to go down in flames and humanity deserves extinction.
      • Apr 25 2014: All I am saying is surely you can present your views without calling other peoples views "childish superstitions". That is not conducive to a healthy discussion, that just invites more slander. I know you are bright guy but some times your emotions overtake you common sense and I know that because I have the same problems at times. Why don't we both just try to be a little more civil? Now, in my senility I forgot what we were even talking about.
  • Apr 17 2014: 1. As to the question, I think not. Capitalism doesn't work. In fact, our system is not capitalism.

    2. As to the statement, our government is not limited in the USA. It can do whatever it wants.
  • Apr 17 2014: Democratic Government is Important And and Its Not necessary to maintain our limited government economically Only if country had an good leaders and good parties..
  • Apr 17 2014: It is unrealistic to let corporations take over the job of centralised redistribution that collects taxes to pay for defence, police, roads, social security, national parkland, large-scale projects (dams, space exploration)...
  • MR T

    • 0
    Apr 16 2014: Are you saying the recent economic downturn was the result of population increase and low voting rates?

    I was under the impression that it was the banker's fault...
  • Apr 16 2014: Do corporations become more and more influential in politics BECAUSE population grows? Does anti-corporation politics become more and more influential as corporations become more and more influential in politics?
    • Apr 21 2014: It's the other way around,

      more money buys more politicians, once you manage to buy most then you're golden
  • Apr 16 2014: What do you really mean by " limited government involvement " ? Because if one consider the simple historical and present facts for US economy (myself being an EU person) your definition I simply false. One can start with Anna Schwartz. Then look closer to Mr. Greenspan's activity, moving from monetary policy towards involvement in financial markets, then Mr. Bernake's involvement in banking and then businesses to the today Mrs. Yellen intentions to go into Labor Market. Do not see anything left untouched !