The Veil of Democracy — Money and State

Let the people in eastern Ukraine decide Russia or Ukraine?

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After the WHO “Pandemic Preparedness Treaty” - democracy? What democracy? Rights? What are those. Consent? Are you kidding? It is OVER. Our rulers WANT this.

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There are different forms of “democracy”.

There is Direct Democracy where the citizens actually vote on specific narrowly focused items – Shall we tax ourselves to send a whole pile of money to Zelensky?

Then there is Representative Democracy, where the citizens choose one of their members who learns all the details and then gets a single vote on a compendium of issues – Shall we borrow money to send it to a diverse slew of shady characters?

That leads to Unrepresentative Democracy, such as we have now in most of the West. Most “Representatives” are representing only themselves, which is why (for example) Congress is held in contempt by the vast majority of the citizens who elect them.

And then we have “Ukrainian Democracy”, where the rulers dispense with the whole messy business of pretending to have elections. Now that is the kind of “Democracy” that it is worth dying for! Sadly, it is the wrong people who are dying.

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Back in 2001, I became aware of Hans Hermann Hoppe, a most scholarly libertarian. Also a charming fellow. Back in those pre-coronary artery stenosis revelation times, I was a smoker and we inhaled together during a break in the conference where he spoke in Zurich. Then the propaganda I had imbibed all those years of the 50’s, 60’s, 70’s, etc. was still in full effect. There was no doubt I lived under a system of democracy.

Hoppe’s new book that year was Democracy the God that Failed. I wasn’t quite ready for it. After all, the past 23 years hadn’t yet driven home the correctness of his theory. There is no doubt in my mind that my former beliefs as to the true nature of our state, in no way actually resembles “of the people, by the people, and for the people”. That, like “consent of the governed”, “it’s a free country” (still applies, but only to illegal aliens) or “the rule of law” is nothing but a tired slogan.

In the former Soviet Union, in an effort to retain a shred of sanity, cynical slogans were elevated to rococo proportions. For example “In the Soviet Union, the past… is very hard to predict”. Or, “I pretend to work and they pretend to pay me”.

A case of convergent evolution at the level of nations, no?. Is there any form of government which does not evolve to tyranny? It took clever lawyers a mere 200 years to undo even the “structural” components of the Constitution (not to mention the mere meaning of words) which were thought to prevent centralization of power - eroded as sure as eternal water over boulders, now reduced to grains of sand on which our civilization now rests.

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Can this ‘decentralized’ American democracy can even survive in a competition with hyper-centralized powers of Russia and China? But I can definitely see how Russia and China might want more Americans to call for decentralization :slight_smile:

It’s pretty typical for systems to decentralize in peaceful times and centralize in problematic times, this goes back to slime molds.

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Respectfully, that is the wrong question. The intended US democratic republic has evolved into what is economically a neo-fascist state – government controls essentially everything, right down to the low-flo toilet we must install in our bathrooms, but private ownership is allowed as long as it kisses the Political Class’s ring. Frankly, this is not wildly different in character from the neo-fascist states which have evolved out of Communism in China and Russia.

The appropriate question about survival is – Are our neo-fascists more competent & smarter than their neo-fascists? Given the evidence of China’s recovery from Mao and Russia’s recovery from the collapse of the USSR, I think the answer is obvious.

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How about “no one died working, but why take a risk?”

Or “we are not afraid of working because we know how to avoid it”

And countless other Radio Yerevan jokes…

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What a fascinating (group of?) organism! It must be a fascinating life form to study in various aspects, at the margin between unicellular and multicellular organisms. There are a few scanning electron microscopic images. I didn’t find any EM sections, though, showing internal structures of junctions. As part of that transition between uni- and multi-cellular organisms, it would be interesting to see the ultrastructure of the junctions which form between these cells and compare them to known junction types in other multicellular organisms. Thanks for linking this. (do you suppose the left are studying these to refine their never ending strategy of ‘divide and conquer’?)

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I’ll answer with a chart, which doesn’t just explain the systems but also the weakness of Russia in Eastern Europe:

The trouble with the Left is that they’re in denial of human nature and biology. All ought, no is.

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Notice that the fall of Communism on that chart is placed at 1990 – which is 34 years ago, two generations in the less salubrious parts of Chicago. Time flies!

The fact that Communism fell back then makes it a reasonable premise that the generation of the likes of Ronald Reagan was smarter & more competent than the generation of the likes of Gorbachev. But time flies. The question today is whether the likes of “Joe Biden” are smarter & more competent than the likes of (their fellow fascists) Putin and XI? To ask the question is to answer it.

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Has anyone read “Take Back Your Government!: A practical handbook for the private citizen who wants democracy to work” by Robert A. Heinlein?

I’ll get around to reading it eventually if for no other reason than that toward the end of his life he must have seen the Reagan Amnesty for what it was bound to become. It’s hard to believe he wouldn’t have had something to say about when politics is hopeless as a remedy and arms must be taken up.

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That’s why we have wars – to establish who was right and who was deluding themselves. :wink:

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While a fascinating book, and completely worth reading, it is more a time capsule of a past era in US retail politics, having been written in 1946. RAH was unable to find a publisher for it then. It was published in 1992, allegedly hurried to coincide with the Ross Perot campaign.

For more recent RAH political statements, Starship Troopers, Expanded Universe and Grumbles from the Grave are informative.

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I’m a massive fan of Heinlein, but I just can’t stomach Starship Troopers like I once did knowing what I now know about war (or rather the BS reasons governments give for going to war). I will never trust anything any government tells me ever again.

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The important part of Starship Troopers from a political perspective is the History and Moral Philosophy class and the history of the book’s timeline. Read it carefully and you’ll see that ST is a cautionary tale in the If This Goes On… vein. This was confirmed later by RAH in (I think, I don’t have it handy) Grumbles. It is also instructive to compare it to Glory Road and Scar Gordon’s discussion of his experiences fighting a jungle war.

In ST’s timeline, there is an international revolt by military veterans against the various governments that badly mistreated them, particularly after the conflicts. They succeed because they were better at cooperating than the corrupt govts. I leave it to you to determine how much this could possibly apply in 1960 (or now) in our timeline.

ST is also a transitional work. It crosses the period between the juvies (Have Space Suit, Will Travel) and Stranger in a Strange Land and it shows. He originally wrote it to have some chance of being published by Scribners (Who had published almost all of the juvies), but they turned it down. There are stylistic elements that perhaps do not match our expectations for a war story, and you can argue that the HMP class and some other elements were not as obvious as they could be [1]. OTOH, RAH never forgot that his first job was to entertain, and this book is him working out how to present more of moral topics without losing the reader.

(As a general rule, assigning any particular view to RAH based solely on the content of his fiction and characters is a suboptimal position.)

[1] The Nature of “Federal Service” in Robert A. Heinlein’s Starship Troopers, James Gifford, pdf

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