To: email@example.com Subject: Re: [JBirch] America's forgotton history (fwd) From: David McDivitt <firstname.lastname@example.org> Date: Thu, 25 Dec 2003 14:00:34 -0600
A few misstatements are made in your posting, William, worth being challenged. First, the term "democracy" is very broad. For the most part it means "government by the people", with the idea of "majority rule" stressed, but not necessarily true. The United States is a republic, yes, but democracy is a broad enough term to include republicanism. So, the United States is a democracy and always has been. The parliamentarianism practiced in Britain is not too much different than our form of democracy, to the extent people elect representatives who in turn set policy. There is no government in existence today which puts every single issue before the people, for consensus, in the manner Bill Clinton proposed, which in my opinion was a ruse because such is not doable.
The French did not fight "for" democracy at all. They fought to establish socialism based on idealistic principles. Modern day concepts of socialism and communism originated in France and French philosophy, almost exclusively. Two competing ideologies have existed in and dominated the West: the British view, one of parliamentarianism, and the French view, one of enforced social ideals. Each of these came through rebellion against feudalism. The British approached it one way, the French another. Napoleon was seen as a savior, golden boy, or hero to the French, who went about trying to conquer Europe and enforce social ideals. Unfortunately those ideals were not economic in nature, but had to do with the arts and constructing a society based on aesthetics. French people continued in poverty while artists and philosophers did their privileged work. Looking at the Soviet Union, many parallels are evident in their focus on idealism, art, and human excellence.
Whether we have democracy is not the issue, but what form of democracy, and how far removed that democracy is from enforced idealism. In my opinion the British were more successful than the French because England separated itself from the established church of that day and went its own way. The fact they formed the Church of England, or Episcopal Church, is beside the point. They did effectively separate from Catholicism. Britain is an island, separate from the rest of Europe, with that separatism defendable. To this day England still maintains a degree of separatism from the European Common Market. France on the other hand, has never fully separated from the Catholic Church.
Finally, what alternative is there to democracy? Must we seek out bigoted intransigent fascism and rule by a dictator, whom we accept because he spouts so-called American values? America is based on challenge. May be the best idealism win. It is up to us therefore to contend with whatever French influence, one of enforced social values, showing it to be what it is: humiliating, and representing no increase to the livelihood of people. For our society to have abundant increase in art does not make common people any better off economically. For people in our society to live properly, pursuant to idealistic humanistic standards, does not serve people, but bureaucracy, which seeks an aesthetically clean human environment, only.
The United States cannot last forever. What, 10,000 years? Another one thousand years? Maybe only another hundred years. Before it goes however, we can surely make a lasting effect on the world and whatever valuations people have in future. If we love liberty, let us contend with French influence around the world, that there is more importance than art. I welcome their viewpoint, for all can do with a little prettiness, but I most certainly refuse to be dominated by it. I will be dominated by what I want, and not what society says I should want.>From: William Bacon <email@example.com>
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