Saturday, December 1, 2012

Self Governance

I came across a quote a couple months back - I don't even remember exactly where anymore - that, in light of the election results, the hand-wringing afterward, and now the talks over the so-called "fiscal cliff," continues to be relevant:
"...the fact will remain that the GOP is both an asylum run by its inmates and a den of authoritarian and/or totalizing religious figures who reject the central premise of democracy:  that society self governs through iterative decisions, and not from some set of revealed rules or via some charismatic Dear Leader."
Emphasis mine. The idea that there are no set principles in a democracy that can guide every policy decision is tough for a person of any political persuasion to swallow sometimes - I know that, especially in my youth, I reflexively thought that adhering to an ideology was the only way to solve political problems. It seems so naive now - unscientific, unproductive, impractical, undemocratic.

If the idea of democracy is that a group of people is capable of confronting and solving the problems it faces, in order to be successful, the group must be flexible, open to compromise, and most importantly willing to learn and accept new information. And yet the current GOP seems more intractable, more brazen, more backward-looking, and more beholden to Mammon than ever before.

No comments: