Supposedly the best government system.
And yet, this is the one and only reason for the imminent death of human kind.
Those who do know are always a minority.
‘Fools’ (as per a specific topic) are always a majority.
As Socrates asked thousands of years ago: Would you trust the majority to decide on what will you do upon a boat in the midst of a hurricane or would you trust the “aristocracy” of the captain who really knows what to do?
Churchill said it elonquently: The best argument against democracy is a 10 minute discussion with the average voter.
So come on.
I was taught our country used to have literacy tests, ostensibly to help provide for an informed electorate, but they were thrown out because their purpose was abused by some to disenfranchise others. I think that even if that abuse didn’t exist the losing side of an issue would always create discontent focused on the ‘undemocratic’ principles of an informed electorate.
In the meantime it looks like the result of the referendum may well be the opposite of the vote. It is being reported here that a new deal has been reached with only slight differences from the one that was voted on. I do hope things work out well for you no matter how it all shakes out.
Indeed the main problem is that it is difficult to know who knows. Who will decide on who is knowlegable and intelligent enough to decide? However I believe that a specific methodology could be developed to solve this problem. For example a small test before someone votes for a specific referendum could apply a different gravity of importance to each vote depending on the knowledge of the voter on specific details related to the thing he is called to vote for. Although such a system could be proved difficult to implement I believe it is worth the try. Trustuing everyone for everything cannot be the solution in 2015. I am not talking about specific in depth knowledge (because something like that would lead to an eliticism that we need to avoid if we are to have a just form of governance) but simple basic things: for example how can a person who does not know how banks work decide on a referendum related to economic decisions?
It is always good to have this discussion. I believe Churchill is also credited with a quote about how Democracy is the worst form of government except all others.
My belief is that Democracy (maybe not in its current form) holds the most potential of all forms of government. I do not believe that the imminent death of humankind is upon us. Yes, there may be a great upheaval coming, that will be painful for most of us. Change does not mean death, at least not how I think of death.
The biggest problem with this discussion is how does a person know who knows? You says those who know will always be a minority, but what is it that they know? A captain may know the best way to steer the rudder in a direction that will keep the ship from capsizing, but the captain will never consider it may not be that important to keep that particular ship on that particular journey upright.
What is it that we are looking for out of Democracy? Certainly I am amazed by who gets elected, how certain things I think are wrong are tolerated, while what I view as minor are not. Hopefully Democracy will be able to raise it from how I think to how we think. Make no mistake we mat still be in the infancy of individual and collective evolution.
Thank you for your inquisitiveness. I truly enjoy your blog.