Democracy?

Posted:
in General Discussion edited January 2014
With all this rhetoric about democracy being the catch-all answer for the world's problems, it's interesting that so many people forget Fareed Zakaria's writings on the rise of illiberal democracy.

Quote:

THE AMERICAN diplomat Richard Holbrooke pondered a problem on the eve of the September 1996 elections in Bosnia, which were meant to restore civic life to that ravaged country. "Suppose the election was declared free and fair," he said, and those elected are "racists, fascists, separatists, who are publicly opposed to [peace and reintegration]. That is the dilemma." Indeed it is, not just in the former Yugoslavia, but increasingly around the world. Democratically elected regimes, often ones that have been reelected or reaffirmed through referenda, are routinely ignoring constitutional limits on their power and depriving their citizens of basic rights and freedoms. From Peru to the Palestinian Authority, from Sierra Leone to Slovakia, from Pakistan to the Philippines, we see the rise of a disturbing phenomenon in international life -- illiberal democracy.



It has been difficult to recognize this problem because for almost a century in the West, democracy has meant liberal democracy -- a political system marked not only by free and fair elections, but also by the rule of law, a separation of powers, and the protection of basic liberties of speech, assembly, religion, and property. In fact, this latter bundle of freedoms -- what might be termed constitutional liberalism -- is theoretically different and historically distinct from democracy. As the political scientist Philippe Schmitter has pointed out, "Liberalism, either as a conception of political liberty, or as a doctrine about economic policy, may have coincided with the rise of democracy. But it has never been immutably or unambiguously linked to its practice." Today the two strands of liberal democracy, interwoven in the Western political fabric, are coming apart in the rest of the world. Democracy is flourishing; constitutional liberalism is not.



In fact, since the rise of democracy we have seen that in places with existing class and ethnic conflict, the democratic system often leads to violence, oppression and corruption. Latin america, for instance, is filled with all sorts of example like this over the century.

Quote:

The tension between constitutional liberalism and democracy centers on the scope of governmental authority. Constitutional liberalism is about the limitation of power, democracy about its accumulation and use. For this reason, many eighteenth- and nineteenth-century liberals saw in democracy a force that could undermine liberty. James Madison explained in The Federalist that "the danger of oppression" in a democracy came from "the majority of the community." Tocqueville warned of the "tyranny of the majority," writing, "The very essence of democratic government consists in the absolute sovereignty of the majority."



The tendency for a democratic government to believe it has absolute sovereignty (that is, power) can result in the centralization of authority, often by extraconstitutional means and with grim results. Over the last decade, elected governments claiming to represent the people have steadily encroached on the powers and rights of other elements in society, a usurpation that is both horizontal (from other branches of the national government) and vertical (from regional and local authorities as well as private businesses and other nongovernmental groups). Lukashenko and Peru's Alberto Fujimori are only the worst examples of this practice. (While Fujimori's actions -- disbanding the legislature and suspending the constitution, among others -- make it difficult to call his regime democratic, it is worth noting that he won two elections and was extremely popular until recently.) Even a bona fide reformer like Carlos Menem has passed close to 300 presidential decrees in his eight years in office, about three times as many as all previous Argentinean presidents put together, going back to 1853. Kyrgyzstan's Askar Akayev, elected with 60 percent of the vote, proposed enhancing his powers in a referendum that passed easily in 1996. His new powers include appointing all top officials except the prime minister, although he can dissolve parliament if it turns down three of his nominees for the latter post.



Horizontal usurpation, usually by presidents, is more obvious, but vertical usurpation is more common. Over the last three decades, the Indian government has routinely disbanded state legislatures on flimsy grounds, placing regions under New Delhi's direct rule. In a less dramatic but typical move, the elected government of the Central African Republic recently ended the longstanding independence of its university system, making it part of the central state apparatus.



Usurpation is particularly widespread in Latin America and the states of the former Soviet Union, perhaps because both regions mostly have presidencies. These systems tend to produce strong leaders who believe that they speak for the people -- even when they have been elected by no more than a plurality. (As Juan Linz points out, Salvador Allende was elected to the Chilean presidency in 1970 with only 36 percent of the vote. In similar circumstances, a prime minister would have had to share power in a coalition government.) Presidents appoint cabinets of cronies, rather than senior party figures, maintaining few internal checks on their power. And when their views conflict with those of the legislature, or even the courts, presidents tend to "go to the nation," bypassing the dreary tasks of bargaining and coalition-building. While scholars debate the merits of presidential versus parliamentary forms of government, usurpation can occur under either, absent well-developed alternate centers of power such as strong legislatures, courts, political parties, regional governments, and independent universities and media. Latin America actually combines presidential systems with proportional representation, producing populist leaders and multiple parties -- an unstable combination.



Read the whole thing if you never have.



The question that arises is whether we should actually be promoting constitutionalism and economic liberalism instead of manufactured democracy.



Somewhat seperate from this, but also on the topic of democracy and US policy, is Josh Marshall's recent post demonstrating that the bush admin in particular is not as pro-democratic as popular thought believes.

Quote:

I don't mean simply that the Bush administration has been unsuccessful or incompetent in pursuing its plans for democratization. I don't even mean that they've been hypocritical or inconsistent. I mean that democratization as a moral or strategic goal simply doesn't figure into the White House's plans.



Let's start with a review of the administration's record in the 189 UN member states whose governments the US has not overthrown in the last three and one half years.



In Central Asia the administration has strengthened ties with coalescing autocracies like Uzbekistan, supporting and facilitating the intensification of domestic repression. No one even disputes this.



In Libya, the US has reestablished diplomatic ties with the Qaddafi government even though it is widely conceded that we are doing so in the context of a domestic crackdown.



We have just recently awarded Pakistan the title of "major non-NATO ally" despite the fact that that the country is governed by a thinly-veiled military dictatorship, that it is a serious offender by most human rights and democracy measures, and has the added benefits of being both a major proliferator of weapons of mass destruction and possessing an intelligence service with longstanding ties to al Qaida.



Other cases are less clear-cut. But attention must be given to Russia where Vladimir Putin has slowly de-democratized the state while enjoying undiminished friendship from the Bush administration. In other cases, where on-going projects of democratization hang in the balance -- the Balkans being the clearest, but by no means the only case -- the administration has pursued a policy of, at best, studied inattention.



One might further add that our most serious fallings-out with longstanding allies have been in cases -- like Germany, South Korea, Turkey and perhaps now Spain -- where governments have bucked our policies -- sometimes seeking political advantage in the doing of it, to be sure -- because their populations overwhelmingly oppose our policies.



I don't pretend that all of these decisions were wrong. In the case of Pakistan I think it has been, by and large, the correct and unavoidable course, though I think the "major non-NATO ally" business was perhaps laying it on a bit thick. And to one degree or another many instances of the Bush administration's cozying up to dictators has been the result of the exigencies of its 'war on terror.'



In essence, if you support the US war on terror, how you run your country is your own business.



But pleading broader geostrategic interests as a defense for supporting dictatorships and human rights abusers is irrelevant as a defense precisely because it is always the defense -- and sometimes even a valid one.



American governments have seldom supported autocracies and tyrants simply for the fun of it. In most cases, we have done so because it served our broader geostrategic interests as we understood and defined them at the moment, whether that be 'stability', American economic interests, fighting communism, ensuring the steady flow of oil, etc. The fact that our priority interest is now opposing terrorism is just the newest defining national goal.



Of course, the two cases where the Bush administration's advocates would beg to differ would be those two cases I chose to set aside at the outset: Afghanistan and Iraq. Yet, I think that at any time in recent history any American government would have attempted to put in place a government that is at least nominally democratic in any state it overthrew. And the case of sorry inattention to Afghanistan makes a very good argument for the proposition that actual democratization is very lower on the list of the administration's priorities.



The administration's advocates would also note various initiatives put forward by the White House to advance the cause of democracy, particularly in the Middle East. But these have tended to be ineffectual or quickly forgotten.



Remember, the key here is the advancement of democracy not only as a good thing, a humanitarian gesture, a form of state-imposed meta-philanthropy, but as a way of advancing American national security. But for that to mean anything one would have to point to cases where we, or in this case, the administration made short-term geopolitical sacrifices to advance our longterm interest in democratization.



And I cannot think of a single case whether in Egypt or Saudi Arabia or Pakistan or Russia or China or Uzbekistan or anywhere where that has happened.



At the risk of repeating myself, this is not to say that the US should, willy nilly, upend friendly non-democracies with an indifference to American strategic interests. But if that's the model the administration is following then there's really, at best, no difference with previous administrations and the whole premise -- so widespread now in our political and foreign policy debates -- that the Bush administration is hawkish on democracy or neo-Wilsonian -- and that this is a departure from previous administrations or a potential Kerry administration -- is just an empty claim embraced by the inattentive and incurious.



«1

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 22
    placeboplacebo Posts: 5,767member
    Yeah, it's like five predators against a hive of...AvP thread, please!



  • Reply 2 of 22
    giantgiant Posts: 6,041member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by segovius

    The problem is that the west is not in any way democratic on a very fundamental level. There is instead of democracy choice which is not the same thing (although the mass of people have allowed themselves to be persuaded it is) - but the choice is circumscribed by over-riding choices that the powers that be want to allow the populace.



    One can choose between Bush and Kerry for example (two politicians who believe in and uphold the system) but one is not allowed to choose for the dissolution of the system as would be the case in any true 'democracy'.




    What's interesting is that this demonstrates the fallicy of thinking about democracy in one-size-fits-all terms. For example, the PRI in mexico brought stability to the country that contrasted greatly with the rest of coup-ridden latin america. While certainly undemocratic and corrupt, the party was able to appropriate all of the various ideologies and incorporate them into the system. So while a marxist ptofessor (and this is a real-life example) would be persecuted in most of latin america, they could find a comfortable home at a mexican university ... so long as they didn't try to over-throw the PRI. Freedom of that sort was almost unheard of in the region.



    However, with the US, our long tradition of democracy is due for a tune-up. The US would likely run far more effeciently with a more representative system. Much of the political bickering that gets in the way of true policy success seems largely due to the winner take all aspect of all government decisions.



    Different stages require different solutions.
  • Reply 3 of 22
    haraldharald Posts: 2,152member
    Fundamentally important article.



    The assault on 'the liberal' is profoundly frightening. People really are keen to throw away their rights not to be held indefinitely on the whim of ... someone they voted in. Bizarre. They're HAPPY to do so. When the Supreme Court rules that this is against the founding principles of the State, people -- people on this board -- wonder out loud how to circumvent the problem of a 'liberal' Supreme Court.



    Oh, and our democracies are not making happy people. They have nice toasters, but they're also on Prozac.



    Me, liberal? How can you be, right now? I'm getting more and more *radical* by the day, because the logic of the changes happening to the US and our 'democracies' mean I'm going to end up on someone's list. And the funny thing is, I'm not changing. I'm still a capitalist, but one who believes the reality of freedom, not the bullshit version peddled by Bush.
  • Reply 4 of 22
    giantgiant Posts: 6,041member
    Two additions to my statement above:



    1. In the problem with choices inside a certain system, this is likely a fundamental problem with all political systems. The reason I brought up the PRI is that it is an extreme example of living freely within a 'regime' so long as you don't try to change it. 'Regime change'* is often violent as it is the transformation of the governing body and all of the society under it (including the people). Personally, I feel that the fundamental ideas upon which US governance is founded are sound, it is the application that needs to change.



    *In the aristotelian sense, which happens to also be the source of the widely misunderstood neoconservative (straussian) term.



    2. And obvious possible objection to a more representative system for the US is the notorious 'weakness' of coalition governments. However, many of the problems seen in the Bush administration have been caused by power becoming too centralized in a group unresponsive to outside input. For instance, the fact that the current admin has been unwilling to shake the state vs state model for all policy even though there is little to support it. By contrast, in future democratic (in the party sense) strategies we can see a williness to accept and consider outside paradigms. In addition, I feel (and I could be wrong) that there is a large portion of the left that feels they have no representation. Some of the ideas would be useful and likely beneficial, but as the democrats move further to the right, the mistakes made by the pseudo-republicans (ironically referred to as the republican party) have less opposition.



    In short, there needs to be a balance between decisive action and multi-party deliberation, thus, a shift to more representation can only help the US. This goes back to the problem with believing in one-size-fits-all models, since what is needed in the US may be very harmful elsewhere.
  • Reply 5 of 22
    giantgiant Posts: 6,041member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by Harald

    Me, liberal? How can you be, right now? I'm getting more and more *radical* by the day, because the logic of the changes happening to the US and our 'democracies' mean I'm going to end up on someone's list. And the funny thing is, I'm not changing. I'm still a capitalist, but one who believes the reality of freedom, not the bullshit version peddled by Bush.



    For the record, I'm a pretty hardcore capitalist. I think that there is little question that, for the most part, capitalism is by far the best system and most conducive to freedom. Of course, there are times when it is not the best, such as certain peasant societies like vietnam before the US manufactured war. I do also think that there should be constraints on business' political power. But by and large, capitalism works pretty well and I agree with Fareed Zakaria that is the best vehicle for social freedom.



    Is that model being applied in Iraq? I don't believe so. Iraqis and their businesses do not have economic freedom in the new Iraq dominated by western companies and cronyism. There are many examples of infrastructure redevelopment costing far more than if done by Iraqi companies, so the supposed economic freedom of iraq is only an illusion.
  • Reply 6 of 22
    giantgiant Posts: 6,041member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by segovius

    Things are no different than ever but all that is happening at the moment is that the US and UK tried to implement the neocon agenda and export this abomination to people who could see through it because they had no tradition of it (hence the necessity of force to accomplish it) and in failing (as was inevitable) they drew the attention of their own people in the west to the bankruptcy of the system.



    And that's the thing that never ceases to amaze me. This group somehow thought they could transform this country seamlessly, even when being told it couldn't happen. What could have possibly made them think it was possible?
  • Reply 7 of 22
    jimmacjimmac Posts: 11,898member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by giant

    What's interesting is that this demonstrates the fallicy of thinking about democracy in one-size-fits-all terms. For example, the PRI in mexico brought stability to the country that contrasted greatly with the rest of coup-ridden latin america. While certainly undemocratic and corrupt, the party was able to appropriate all of the various ideologies and incorporate them into the system. So while a marxist ptofessor (and this is a real-life example) would be persecuted in most of latin america, they could find a comfortable home at a mexican university ... so long as they didn't try to over-throw the PRI. Freedom of that sort was almost unheard of in the region.



    However, with the US, our long tradition of democracy is due for a tune-up. The US would likely run far more effeciently with a more representative system. Much of the political bickering that gets in the way of true policy success seems largely due to the winner take all aspect of all government decisions.



    Different stages require different solutions.




    The problem as I see it is that our original notion of democracy has been grafted so many times to fit the new situation it seems to have lost the original theme it was intended to have.



    What happens when you add on to an old operating system for computers to fit what's going on in the rest of technological development ( OS 9 ).



    And then there's those who exploit the old system in ways that people would have never thought of when it was founded.



    The last election was a good example of how antiquated our system of electing our leaders is.



    Yeah Giant you're probably right something new needs to happen. But I think it'll take a long while. you know how resistant people are to change. Especially people who are doing quite well under the old system.
  • Reply 8 of 22
    scottscott Posts: 7,431member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by giant

    ...



    However, with the US, our long tradition of democracy is due for a tune-up. The US would likely run far more effeciently with a more representative system. Much of the political bickering that gets in the way of true policy success seems largely due to the winner take all aspect of all government decisions.



    Different stages require different solutions.








    Political bickering is a representative system. And what policy successes do you want to facilitate? That can be a two way street, right? Careful what you wish for.



    We have nothing like a winner take all system now. There's plenty of democrats and republicans that cross the aisle to vote on the other side of a law. Enough that many laws, good or bad (which is subjective for each person), a dead in the water and rightly or wrongly so.



    I don?t see how things that are more representative are going to make it easier to set good policy.
  • Reply 9 of 22
    sdw2001sdw2001 Posts: 16,937member
    "Now it's failed and the only people who can't see it are those that have bought into the ersatz decaf branded version of 'democracy-lite' touted by Bush and Blair and all the rest of the snake-oil salesman who have nothing to offer but the same old tired cliches that are only bought by the populace because they are too scared to try to think for themselves."







    This discussion is both hysterical and frightening. So far, we've had:



    1) Bush bashing

    2) Blair bashing

    3) Democracy bashing

    4) The notion that our system of government is outmoded

    5) The notion that we should not promote Democracy because we're afraid of who might be elected.

    6) The notion that Democracy is no better than other forms of governments

    7) The notion that Democracy has failed in the west.



    My god, it's like the 1980 Presidential election all over again. Democracy does work. It works better than all other forms of government, because it is human nature to seek self-government and self-determination.



    I grant you that there have been corrupt Democratic regimes. Perhaps we should stop promoting generic "Democracy", and start promoting "Constitutional Democracy". I would of course agree that any government must be based on the rule of law.
  • Reply 10 of 22
    sdw2001sdw2001 Posts: 16,937member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by jimmac

    The problem as I see it is that our original notion of democracy has been grafted so many times to fit the new situation it seems to have lost the original theme it was intended to have.



    What happens when you add on to an old operating system for computers to fit what's going on in the rest of technological development ( OS 9 ).



    And then there's those who exploit the old system in ways that people would have never thought of when it was founded.



    The last election was a good example of how antiquated our system of electing our leaders is.



    Yeah Giant you're probably right something new needs to happen. But I think it'll take a long while. you know how resistant people are to change. Especially people who are doing quite well under the old system.




    Pardon me, but wrong...wrong and WRONG.



    Your point is that our system needs to be "revised"? In other words, it's out of date? Wow.



    Jimmac, you only think the last election was an example of how antiquated our system is because your man didn't win. Had he won, you'd be touting the wisdom of the founding fathers.



    The 2000 election was the ultimate example of our system of government and laws "working." I am speaking without regard to the outcome. Of course, the accuracy of the election process is a serious concern...for both parties. That's a separate issue. But look at what happened: We had an extremely close election with an uncertain outcome. The electorate was highly polarized. Yet, we still had a peaceful transfer of power despite the fact that 50 million people did not get the President they wanted. No martial law. No looting. No tanks in the streets. The nation simply went on, and accepted the outcome.



    That's our system for you. It works.
  • Reply 11 of 22
    giantgiant Posts: 6,041member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by SDW2001

    Perhaps we should stop promoting generic "Democracy", and start promoting "Constitutional Democracy". I would of course agree that any government must be based on the rule of law.



    Wild. You just spent a whole post arguing with your imaginary picture of "this discussion" and ended up arguing the exact point that this thread started with. That's quite a talent you have there.
  • Reply 12 of 22
    jimmacjimmac Posts: 11,898member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by SDW2001

    Pardon me, but wrong...wrong and WRONG.



    Your point is that our system needs to be "revised"? In other words, it's out of date? Wow.



    Jimmac, you only think the last election was an example of how antiquated our system is because your man didn't win. Had he won, you'd be touting the wisdom of the founding fathers.



    The 2000 election was the ultimate example of our system of government and laws "working." I am speaking without regard to the outcome. Of course, the accuracy of the election process is a serious concern...for both parties. That's a separate issue. But look at what happened: We had an extremely close election with an uncertain outcome. The electorate was highly polarized. Yet, we still had a peaceful transfer of power despite the fact that 50 million people did not get the President they wanted. No martial law. No looting. No tanks in the streets. The nation simply went on, and accepted the outcome.



    That's our system for you. It works.




    Nope I'm sorry but it's you that are wrong. The system doesn't work when thousands of individual votes don't get counted.



    And please don't play dumb ask what these were. I'm not looking it up for you ( again ).



    You just say it works because Bush won the election.



    Well No.
  • Reply 13 of 22
    giantgiant Posts: 6,041member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by Scott

    I don?t see how things that are more representative are going to make it easier to set good policy.



    I answered this objection in my follow-up and recognize that the way I put it was not the best.
  • Reply 14 of 22
    sammi josammi jo Posts: 4,634member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by SDW2001



    That's our system for you. It works. [/B]



    So if it works, then why change it? Electronic voting machines are going to be used in this coming election, in 35% to 75% of polling stations. These machines crash, they have produced some bizarre results, computer savvy people (including 9 year old kids!) can hack them or register multiple votes, they run on Windows operating systems, you can't run recounts with them, printed hard copies of ballots are being boycotted by the manufacturers, the vote registered on a hardcopy printout may not necessarily reflect the intention of the voter, and worst of all, the source code for these machines that run elections of public officials for public office is PRIVATELY owned and unavailable for scrutiny!!!!!!!!!!! And....just FYI, the CEO of the main DRE manufacturer Diebold Inc. stated in an internal memo that "he was committed to getting G.W. Bush returned for a second term".....



    The CA Sec. of State Kevin Shelley recently banned certain Diebold machines from being used because of their unreliability. These same machines are going to used nationwide come November. Unless the election is an obvious landslide, either way, then we will no real way in knowing who actually won.



    There's our new system for you SDW....I guess you approve???



    More about the DRE debacle and potential electoral chaos:



    http://www.verifiedvoting.org/



    http://www.blackboxvoting.org/



    The best way to conduct fair elections is the time honored method of pen and ink, and supervised hand counts in public places. Keep all machines, both electronic and mechanical OUT of elections
  • Reply 15 of 22
    whisperwhisper Posts: 735member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by sammi jo

    There's our new system for you SDW....I guess you approve???





    No, that's not the system. The system is that we vote, count the votes, decide who won, and move on with life without throwing hissy fits over who lost.



    Oh, BTW, yeah, I'm scared of the electronic voting machines too.
  • Reply 16 of 22
    jimmacjimmac Posts: 11,898member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by Whisper

    No, that's not the system. The system is that we vote, count the votes, decide who won, and move on with life without throwing hissy fits over who lost.



    Oh, BTW, yeah, I'm scared of the electronic voting machines too.




    I guess you don't know too much about the last election.
  • Reply 17 of 22
    scottscott Posts: 7,431member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by giant

    I answered this objection in my follow-up and recognize that the way I put it was not the best.



    Maybe you could provide a footnote?
  • Reply 18 of 22
    sdw2001sdw2001 Posts: 16,937member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by jimmac

    Nope I'm sorry but it's you that are wrong. The system doesn't work when thousands of individual votes don't get counted.



    And please don't play dumb ask what these were. I'm not looking it up for you ( again ).



    You just say it works because Bush won the election.



    Well No.




    "Nuh-uh! Nuh-Uh!" Please.



    What you can't get through your skull is that "all" the votes have NEVER been counted. There is a margin of error and always has been. Nothing that happened was outside the normal margins.



    And, while you spout off about democratic disenfranchisement, millions of Republican voters in the Western times zones were basically told the election was over at 8:00 EST. Now that's disenfranchisement.



    But the above is all besides the point. I was talking about the basic concepts of the electoral college and the peaceful transfer of power. Our system works.



    Oh, and jimmac: Why are you not upset about Gore's lawyers getting hundreds of military ballots disqualified on a technicality? I thought you wanted to have all the votes counted? Guess not.









  • Reply 19 of 22
    sdw2001sdw2001 Posts: 16,937member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by giant

    Wild. You just spent a whole post arguing with your imaginary picture of "this discussion" and ended up arguing the exact point that this thread started with. That's quite a talent you have there.



    Excuse me, but that is NOT what the majority of comments alude to.



    segovius:



    Quote:

    It is obvious that many eastern muslims are satisfied with their lives and religion - or would be if the west butted out, and that many in western democracies are very dissatisfied with their lives. Western leaders know and fear this - democracy was an experiment. That's all. Our older, wiser leaders from an older, wiser time knew this.



    Now it's failed and the only people who can't see it are those that have bought into the ersatz decaf branded version of 'democracy-lite' touted by Bush and Blair and all the rest of the snake-oil salesman who have nothing to offer but the same old tired cliches that are only bought by the populace because they are too scared to try to think for themselves.



    this one is by you:







    Quote:

    However, with the US, our long tradition of democracy is due for a tune-up. The US would likely run far more effeciently with a more representative system. Much of the political bickering that gets in the way of true policy success seems largely due to the winner take all aspect of all government decisions.



    Different stages require different solutions.







    Quote:

    And obvious possible objection to a more representative system for the US is the notorious 'weakness' of coalition governments. However, many of the problems seen in the Bush administration have been caused by power becoming too centralized in a group unresponsive to outside input.



    Somehow I wonder if you'd say that if another person was in the White House.

    Wait..no I don't.
  • Reply 20 of 22
    jimmacjimmac Posts: 11,898member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by SDW2001

    "Nuh-uh! Nuh-Uh!" Please.



    What you can't get through your skull is that "all" the votes have NEVER been counted. There is a margin of error and always has been. Nothing that happened was outside the normal margins.



    And, while you spout off about democratic disenfranchisement, millions of Republican voters in the Western times zones were basically told the election was over at 8:00 EST. Now that's disenfranchisement.



    But the above is all besides the point. I was talking about the basic concepts of the electoral college and the peaceful transfer of power. Our system works.



    Oh, and jimmac: Why are you not upset about Gore's lawyers getting hundreds of military ballots disqualified on a technicality? I thought you wanted to have all the votes counted? Guess not.










    Thanks for examples which support the idea we need to update the system!



    And by the way a lot of people say the electoral college needs to go.
Sign In or Register to comment.