This really isn’t all that shocking. After all, “This is what democracy looks like!” is what these fine upstanding citizens and Rhodes Scholars are only too willing to chant when gathered in large groups, sometimes with fists pumping the air. The thing is, they’re right. Democracy is a large, undisciplined group, its members wanting what they want, with no checks or stops on their behavior. Whatever 50% plus 1 thinks is appropriate, without regard for the law and without a whit of consideration of the idea that someday, they might be part of the 49%.
And it’s why the Framers designed something different.
From this view of the subject it may be concluded that a pure democracy, by which I mean a society consisting of a small number of citizens, who assemble and administer the government in person, can admit of no cure for the mischiefs of faction. A common passion or interest will, in almost every case, be felt by a majority of the whole; a communication and concert result from the form of government itself; and there is nothing to check the inducements to sacrifice the weaker party or an obnoxious individual. Hence it is that such democracies have ever been spectacles of turbulence and contention; have ever been found incompatible with personal security or the rights of property; and have in general been as short in their lives as they have been violent in their deaths. Theoretic politicians, who have patronized this species of government, have erroneously supposed that by reducing mankind to a perfect equality in their political rights, they would, at the same time, be perfectly equalized and assimilated in their possessions, their opinions, and their passions.
A republic, by which I mean a government in which the scheme of representation takes place, opens a different prospect, and promises the cure for which we are seeking.
-James Madison, The Federalist No. 10
Now, the Occupy crowd has excuses why it isn’t interested in seeking change through participation in the existing political process, ranging from “they are all corrupt” to “the corporation’s influence the political process, and that’s why we’re Occupying Wall Street and not Bwarney Fwanks’ office in Washington D.C.”
However, it is all nonsense. While the brighter lights among them would die before admitting that the Tea Party laid this lie bare when it worked to elect over 100 candidates to Congress in the last election, it demonstrated what a “small” representative “silly”, “racist” group of “insane” citizens can do. And if the Occupiers are really 99% of the country, as they so boldly claim, then electoral change shouldn’t be too difficult at all.
They don’t forego this route because it is impossible. They forego this route because they don’t want to do that. Because the rest of us (Wait! I thought they were 99%?) won’t “vote in our best interests”. What is our best interest? Why, what THEY say it is, of course. Which brings us to the irony. They only want democracy when it is a mob. They don’t trust the ballot box, and will do anything to invalidate electoral results that are between them and what they want. A great example?
Shocked when the “democratic” process in the state brought an end to the free-for-all for public sector unions at the public trough, they banded together and massed at the capitol in Madison, and proceeded to throw a months long temper tantrum, complete with intimidation, lawlessness, and futile recall efforts funded with millions of union dollars.
And now my perpetually misguided friend Rutherford wants to paint the Occupy! nonsense as equivalent to the Tea Parties. It is silly and wrong, but he’s never let that stop him when he feels he has it all figured out. Of course, I don’t recall any Tea Party gathering where they told the participants how to get out of hand cuffs, or passed out condoms, “expressed” themselves with defecation, or the participants rolled over to people’s residences to “protest”.
I’m not surprised, though. It isn’t like the community organizer in chief sets a good example for them.
Its funny, but I don’t hear so much anymore about how “democracy” made Egypt a better place. But then, much like the Occupiers here, the protestors there were being used by people who wanted “democracy” to accomplish for them what they couldn’t accomplish on their own.
Its funny where you find wisdom sometimes. Especially when its lurking right under your nose, or has been in your ears for years.