Posts Tagged ‘democracy’

DEMOCRACY? WRONG, MR. CHURCHILL

Monday, May 4th, 2015

“Many forms of Government have been tried and will be tried in this world of sin and woe. No one pretends that democracy is perfect or all-wise. Indeed, it has been said that democracy is the worst form of Government except for all those other forms that have been tried from time to time . . . .” -Winston Churchill, House of Commons (11NOV1947)

Churchill, Sir Winston Leonard Spencer (1874-1965): statesman, British Prime Minister (1940-1945, 1951-1955)

Winston Churchill has become a curious and somewhat paradoxical hero to most Americans — most Americans, that is, with the notable exception of Barack Hussein Obama II. Yet, consider the following:

Churchill was a man who never met a war he didn’t like. By his own account, he suffered from recurrent depressions — his “black dog days” as he characterized them — for which he self-medicated with alcohol; a depressant and, therefore, an ill-chosen choice. One well might speculate that wars excited him; thereby, counteracting his vulnerability towards those painful periods.

From early in his long political career, Churchill was a man lowly trusted by his fellow politicians but highly distrusted. Many considered him brash, impulsive, and imprudent. The common notion among his detractors is that his impaired judgement revealed itself with deadly consequences for others, for example, during both the Great War then its sequel.

During World War I when Euro-Caucasians engaged in a massive self-slaughter, it was his attack at Gallipoli against Turkey, which he characterized incorrectly as “the sick man of Europe”. The antecedent for his attack was the plight of Russia, then an ally. The consequence was the bloodiest carnage of the war until that time, including of Australians and New Zealanders, ending in defeat.

During World War II when Euro-Caucasians decided to resume their massive self-slaughter, it was his attack against Italy, which he characterized incorrectly as “the soft underbelly of Europe”. The antecedent was the threat in North Africa to the Empire. The consequence was the Southern Front of the Wehrmacht being the only front still capable of fighting when the carnage, beginning in the Autumn of 1943, ended in the Spring of 1945. It proved the campaign with the most casualties of the entire war for the Americans and British.

His tactical mistakes notwithstanding, more misplaced was his overall strategy. Churchill’s long-held, primary, targeted goal was to have maintained the British Empire intact. As noted, that goal guided his decision to attack Italy, for example. In fulfilling that goal, Churchill hardly could have failed more completely, possibly even had Hitler won the war. Instead of bringing his behavior under the long-term consequence comprising his primary, targeted goal, he allowed his behavior to come under the control of an immediate antecedent — the military adventurism of Nazified Germany.

Antecedents-Behaviors-Consequences — the ABC’s

Science says. “According to the Law of Effect, behavior is under the control of its consequences.”

behavior n.: the manner of conducting oneself. –Webster’s New Collegiate Dictionary

Ultimately, behavior comes under the control of its consequences, the events following a behavior. Ultimately, but not necessarily initially. Initially, the controlling factor can be an event preceding the behavior — the antecedent.

“The woman Folly is riotous; She is thoughtlessness and knoweth nothing.” -Proverbs 9:13

In his own way, Churchill allowed himself to commit a universal and timeless error in human behavior; namely, allowing attractive but fatal antecedents to control behavior not ugly but vital consequences. Doing so has been the ruin of many a person, good and bad.

Doing so was the ruin of Adolf Hitler. As the Winter of 1942 approached, the Wehrmacht had not secured the victory that they mistakenly had believed achieved earlier and easily. Instead, the Russians mounted a successful but costly resistance at Stalingrad — the antecedent. Hitler’s behavioral response? He refused to allow his ill-clad troops to withdraw to defensible positions. Consequence? He lost the battle and with it the war.

So, there are antecedents that precede and prompt behaviors. There are the behaviors themselves. There are the consequences that follow behaviors and either strengthen or weaken them. The ABC’s (www.inescapableconsequences.com).

Allowing behavior to fall under the control of its antecedents often ends ill. Maintaining behavior under the control of its consequences more often ends well. Hitler’s behavior illustrates the validity of this scientifically-documented concept.

PART TWO

Consequences For Churchill and Others

“I have always said that if Great Britain were defeated in war I hoped we should find a Hitler to lead us back to our rightful position among the nations. I am sorry, however, that he has not been mellowed by the great success that has attended him.” -Winston Churchill, The London Times (07NOV1938)

Despite the erroneous inferences drawn from this statement, Churchill never liked Hitler although he apparently admired the success that Germany was enjoying at the time under Hitler versus, say, the USA under Roosevelt. In September1939, Germany invaded Poland. The invasion was the antecedent for the British under then-Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain and the French declaring war against Germany. The consequences would be the defeat of Germany; the end of European, colonial empires; and the occupation of Eastern Europe by the Soviet Union for the following seventy-five years.

With the advent of the state of war with Germany, Churchill might have re-read Hitler’s internationally best-selling book, Mein Kampf. Clearly, Hitler admired Britain and viewed her empire as a stabilizing force worldwide. Notes from a secret conference in 1937 attended by the Nazis’ highest leadership and general staff document that Hitler’s view for the world did not include destruction of the British empire nor even invasion of Britain herself. Hitler wanted Russia in order to provide Germans with lebensraum.

From September 1939 until April 1940, the opposing forces essentially remained idle militarily — the so-called Sitzkreig. Beginning in October 1939, Hitler made the first of several supposedly peaceful overtures to Britain and France — all summarily rejected.

Were they sincere? Some say yes; some say no. In that regard, it may be of interest to read views from the other side, such as the following:

http://www.wintersonnenwende.com/scriptorium/english/archives/nothanks/wwr00.html .

In April 1940, Germany invaded Denmark as a launching pad to invade Norway. It had been no secret that Britain and France planned the same invasion in order to block German access to the North Atlantic. In May 1940, Germany invaded France via the low countries. Chamberlain’s government fell. Parliament elected Winston Churchill the succeeding Prime Minister.

Had Churchill withdrawn Britain from the war, would he have saved the British Empire and possibly the French Empire as well as France itself? Whatever might have been, like an English bulldog, he refused to release his grip on the pursuit of total warfare; thereby, ultimately destroying that which he prized above all else — the Empire.

Might he have obviated the mass murder of Jews, a decision made in 1942 at the Wannsee Conference — a conference attended by neither Himmler of the SS nor Hitler himself? Prior to the war, the Nazis had been only too pleased to allow Jews to emigrate voluntarily albeit with few possessions. Although plans had remained vague, the Nazis debated about a destination to which to deport the rest involuntarily. Murder had not been on the menu.

During the Great War, Turkish troops murdered surrendering enemy troops then treated the remainder harshly, including forced labor. Consequence? 70% of Allied troops in Turkish captivity died. The controlling factor was the economic context. Turkey could not afford to house, guard, and feed prisoners of war.

During its sequel, the context was the same. Germany could not afford to house, guard, and feed inmates of the concentration camps. The alternative selected was mass murder, at which the Germans were expertly efficient. Ironically, it had been a German-Jewish chemist, Fritz Haber, who had invented the precursor to the gas used later to murder his own people.

Had Churchill made peace with Germany at the start would the Nazis have committed such an atrocity? No one can say with certainty. Does Churchill’s decision make him responsible in any way for the Nazis’ decision? No, but the consequences of Churchill’s decision illustrate the unintended but inescapable consequences of behavior under the control of antecedents and short-term consequences, especially political behavior.

PART THREE

Democracy and the United Kingdom

In 1707, England and Scotland formally united to create the United Kingdom. At one time, its precursor, England, had been just that — a kingdom; not a democracy but a monarchy governed under “the divine right of kings”, a concept initiated in the late16th-century. Beginning, nevertheless, with the Magna Carta, initially drafted in 1215 with subsequent revisions, the British political system slowly evolved towards democracy to the point of neutering the House of Lords with recent calls even to abolish it.

In 1831 while writing of democracy in the newly-founded United States of America, the Frenchman, Alexis de Tocqueville, noted that a benefit of aristocracy is social continuity. Aristocracy weakens the tendency of a society to bring its behavior under the control of antecedents and short-term consequences and strengthens the tendency to bring its behavior under the control of long-term consequences.

In the Britain of 1940, had the House of Lords possessed ultimate power over the House of Commons, would Winston Churchill have become Prime Minister? Would Britain have pursued another war so destructive to her empire?

Of uncertain origin is the quip that the Sun never sets on the British Empire because God would not trust an Englishman in the dark. Truly, in governing their empire, the British had their faults but none compared to those of the Spanish or even the Belgians.

Also, it has been said that Britain brought civilization to the rest of the world. Thereto, a case can be made. Without British governance, India, for example, likely would have remained a collection of backward, feudal states without a common language.

If Britain brought civilization to the rest of the world, did democracy bring termination to the British Empire and to Britain herself? Here again, a case can be made.

Democracy and the United States of America
“Remember, democracy never lasts long. It soon wastes, exhausts, and murders itself. There never was a democracy yet that did not commit suicide.” -John Adams (1725-1836)

Adams sentiments were echoed by many of the Founding Fathers of the United States of America, including Jefferson and Madison. To them, the word, democracy, represented an obscenity.

“The best argument against democracy is a five-minute conversation with the average voter.” -Winston Churchill

Despite Winston Churchill’s begrudging accepting of democracy as the least worst system of governance, he apparently held a jaundiced view of the voting public itself. That view supports the argument in favor of a participatory republic instead of a democracy.

Clearly, Churchill’s words merely echoed the views of both Federalists and Anti-Federalists. The respective goal of both was to have created not a democracy but a participatory republic. The Federalists prevailed overall, however. Who could participate in voting, they delegated largely to the States. Today, fulfilling the Anti-Federalists’ concerns, an overpowering, increasingly tyrannical, federal government has reversed that which the Federalists had tried to create.

The Constitution stipulates only one crime, sedition. Today, federal laws stipulate more than 3,000 comprising more than 23,000 pages of verbiage. Total laws exceed 40,000. Many of these laws contradict one another. The average American on an average day cannot arise from bed without breaking some law. Therein lies one of the bitter fruits of democracy.

“Well, Doctor, what have we got — a Republic or a Monarchy?” Benjamin Franklin was asked.

 “A Republic if you can keep it,” warned Dr. Franklin.

Americans could not. Instead, the nation has descended increasingly into the depths of democracy with all its predictable consequences.

The descent began a long tome ago in the 1880s with the rise of the so-called Progressives, a catchy name that ignores the obvious fact that progressive for one man may be regressive for another. Under the phony banner of democracy, the Progressives — notably via Theodore Roosevelt, Woodrow Wilson, Franklin Roosevelt, and Lyndon Johnson — have dispossessed the majority and disestablished the Constitution of the United States of America and traditional American ideals and values. They have been replacing liberty with tyranny, all while waving their phony banner. Under Obama, who occupies a category of his own, the pace has been accelerating.

Churchill’s later sentiments notwithstanding, the founders of this nation believed that they were establishing a nation for Christian Euro-Caucasians based upon a written constitution reflecting English law and custom. The targeted goal of that constitution was to have protected life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.

Since the ratification of the Constitution then the Bill of Rights, the United States of America continuously has evolved from the orderly governance of a republic with limited but widespread participation towards the disorderly governance of a democracy racked by mob-rule among competing minorities — a nation on fire merely masquerading as the republic envisioned by the Federalists. Witness Negroes burning Korean-owned shops in Baltimore recently and in Los Angeles previously.

So, what to do? Complaining may feel good; it implies action, but it itself changes nothing. Only action changes context. Ah, but what action (www.inescapableconsequences.com)?

-End-

REPUBLICANISM OR DEMOCRACY

Monday, January 27th, 2014

Note (03FEB2014): Part Two added.

“The rich ruleth over the poor, And the borrower is servant to the lender.” -Proverbs 22:7

Democracy: Rule from the bottom.

Aristocracy: Rule from the top.

Republicanism: Rule from the middle.

To the Founding Fathers, aristocratic rule comprised the context in which occurred the American Revolution even though, subsequently, some favored crowning General George Washington King not electing him President.

To the Founding Fathers, democratic rule meant mob-rule. They, therefore, regarded the word, democracy, as an obscenity.

To the Founding Fathers, republican rule, somewhat idealistically perhaps, meant representational rule distributed among a moral class of responsible citizens with personal stakes in the well-being of society, preferably owners of real property according to Jefferson . . . a restriction opposed by Hamilton. Generally, Hamilton’s concept prevailed over Jefferson’s.

Given its immense size, abundant natural wealth of land and resources, and protection by two oceans, America prospered; admittedly, with some significant ups and downs. Such prosperity seemed to confirm the validity of Hamilton’s concept over Jefferson’s . . . seemed to, that is, until 1932 when FDR vastly accelerated Hoover’s “progressive”, economic policies while admitting that he had no clear concept according to which he was acting; no concept, that is, except promoting populism.

FDR’s policies failed economically. Two foreigners, however, inadvertently came to FDR’s rescue, Chancellor Adolf Hitler (1889-1945) in Germany and General Hideki Tōjō (1884-1948) in Japan.

In Europe, responding to the onerous economic demands of the Allies after WWI and to the depression of the early 1930s, a plurality of Germans elected Adolf Hitler and his Nazis. After the fall of France in 1940, America began switching to wartime production. The consequence? Increasing employment. The cost? Debt.

Meanwhile in Asia, responding to American embargoes upon exports of oil and steel coupled with the American military provocation of dispatching the fleet from San Diego to Pearl Harbor, Tōjō decided to expand Japanese domination in the Pacific. To achieve his goal of having captured the Philippines in order to secure his eastward flank, he attacked Pear Harbor in 1941, overruling his naval counterpart, Admiral Yamamoto (1884-1943). The economic consequence for America? Depletion of the pool of labor by drafting millions of American men. The cost?  More debt . . . borrowing that would generalize into increasingly massive debt for non-military, socio-political purposes.

The inadvertent economic rescuing of the American economy by the Axis powers proved temporary; nevertheless, it lasted more than thirty years. It masked the challenging reality that American territorial size, natural resources, and geographical isolation no longer could support financially Hamilton-favored democracy, especially as expanded by FDR and every one of his successors.

The inescapable consequences of a large and enlarging society based upon Hamilton-favored democracy now are upon us. As feared by the Founding Fathers, democratic rule has become mob-rule that, in turn, is leading to financial ruin. Representative John Boehner, Speaker of the House of Representatives, recently stated the situation succinctly, “We’re broke!”

PART TWO

What is the probability of a return to the republicanism envisioned by the Founding Fathers and promoted by Jefferson? Operationally, a majority of the electorate is “on the dole”, one way or another; witness the 47-million on Food Stamps and the 51% exempt from the income-tax. It is raiding the Treasury via the ballot-box, losing its freedom by exchanging liberty for legalized theft from its fellow citizens and from the unwilling unborn. In 1849, Frédéric Bastiat wrote in The Law that a simple test to determine whether a law is just and fair is to ask the following question: Does the law do for Citizen A at the expense of Citizen B that which would be a crime if A did it himself directly to B? If yes, the law is unjust and unfair.

The most socially and economically destructive aspect of this raiding is the democratically-sanctioned license for the recipients of the largesse to determine the amount received, and the most destructive aspect of that license is the income-tax and its agency of collection that finances the scheme. To paraphrase Psalms 49:14, Is not this the way of them that are foolish and of those who after them approve their sayings?

Given that context, the probability of a return to republicanism appears slim. Even so, what event conceivably could occasion a return? A coup by Obama and his cabal resisted by a successful armed rebellion? Unlikely. An economic collapse?

Should such a collapse occur, what might be the American response?  Some say a larger dose of the same toxins that poisoned us; e.g., “Quantitative Easing Infinity”. Some say a fragmentation of the one nation into several. Some say the rebellion cited above although proposing for it vague and often conflicting goals. Few, very few, say. . . firstly, a return to the original Constitution and Bill of Rights, slightly modified and strictly interpreted; secondly, a promotion of traditional American ideals and values of individual reliance and self-reliance; and, thirdly, the employment of policies and programs scientifically-based and scientifically-driven (www.inescapableconsequences.com).