Monday, March 12, 2007


I dont know how many times I have heard it: "We need to bring democracy to the middle east ... or the far east ... or South America ... or .

This mindset could not be further from the mark if they tried. There is NOTHING inheritly good (or evil for that matter) in democracy. Democracy is not an ideal or even a philosophical entity. Democracy is really almost mathematics applied to government. Count votes, make laws. It says nothing for quality of a government. It says nothing for if it is or is not friendly to the US. Why in the world would you fight and die for someone else to have democracy?

How well has democracy worked in Lebanon, where Hamas is now the legal ruling party? How well has democracy worked in Iraq? How well has democracy worked in Venezuela, electing Hugo Chavez? How well did democracy work when pre-war Germans elected Adolf Hitler (with the complete knowledge of what his plans were)?

What really is needed is individual rights, not democracy. The concept of individual rights is an ideal. It is a philosophical principle. Individual rights, properly implemented, would make the government slave to the individual. It would structure laws such that the rights of the individual would not be superseded by the rights of the majority.

The individual rights concept is exactly what the US government was based on, though assuredly flawed in its implementation. (How in the world could you make an individual supreme and then go and remove rights for a particular sex or for various racial classes? But that is another problem and another rant...) In short, if you can accept individual rights, we can make pretty much ANY controversial right wing or left wing argument go away. Completely. And then maybe Congress can get back to important things like having hearings on professional baseball players.

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