Hmmm, I’m noticing a trend that flies in the face of all that Kumbaya, feel-good, Arab Spring democracy-spreading cheering that was emitting from this same circle not too long ago.
So now democracy (which is a general term here for setting up a constitution, following it, and having a system of freedom wherein the people get to vote on a regular basis … good or bad) is now somehow passé.
To hear North Carolina’s governor address the democratic practice of voting on schedule you would think it is such a major problem to the democracy … even more so to a representative democracy.
Early buffering of Gov. Perdue’s remarks to not have elections for Congress for a few years were fluffed-off as a joke. But the above audio appears not to have any sort of punchline delivery to it.
The governor’s remarks, in and of themselves, might fall under the radar quickly enough, except that they are a bit echoed in Obama’s former budget guy, Peter Orszag’s column …
In an 1814 letter to John Taylor, John Adams wrote that “there never was a democracy yet that did not commit suicide.” That may read today like an overstatement, but it is certainly true that our democracy finds itself facing a deep challenge: During my recent stint in the Obama administration as director of the Office of Management and Budget, it was clear to me that the country’s political polarization was growing worse — harming Washington’s ability to do the basic, necessary work of governing. If you need confirmation of this, look no further than the recent debt-limit debacle, which clearly showed that we are becoming two nations governed by a single Congress — and that paralyzing gridlock is the result.
So what to do? To solve the serious problems facing our country, we need to minimize the harm from legislative inertia by relying more on automatic policies and depoliticized commissions for certain policy decisions. In other words, radical as it sounds, we need to counter the gridlock of our political institutions by making them a bit less democratic. […]
And now comes an article by the New York Times expressing how people all around the world just see voting as “useless”.
Increasingly, citizens of all ages, but particularly the young, are rejecting conventional structures like parties and trade unions in favor of a less hierarchical, more participatory system modeled in many ways on the culture of the Web.
In that sense, the protest movements in democracies are not altogether unlike those that have rocked authoritarian governments this year, toppling longtime leaders in Tunisia, Egypt and Libya. Protesters have created their own political space online that is chilly, sometimes openly hostile, toward traditional institutions of the elite.
The critical mass of wiki and mapping tools, video and social networking sites, the communal news wire of Twitter and the ease of donations afforded by sites like PayPal makes coalitions of like-minded individuals instantly viable.
“You’re looking at a generation of 20- and 30-year-olds who are used to self-organizing,” said Yochai Benkler, a director of the Berkman Center for Internet and Society at Harvard University. “They believe life can be more participatory, more decentralized, less dependent on the traditional models of organization, either in the state or the big company. Those were the dominant ways of doing things in the industrial economy, and they aren’t anymore.”
Yonatan Levi, 26, called the tent cities that sprang up in Israel “a beautiful anarchy.” There were leaderless discussion circles like Internet chat rooms, governed, he said, by “emoticon” hand gestures like crossed forearms to signal disagreement with the latest speaker, hands held up and wiggling in the air for agreement — the same hand signs used in public assemblies in Spain. There were free lessons and food, based on the Internet conviction that everything should be available without charge.
Someone had to step in, Mr. Levi said, because “the political system has abandoned its citizens.”
The rising disillusionment comes 20 years after what was celebrated as democratic capitalism’s final victory over communism and dictatorship. […]
Get it? Democracy is hard and messy, and sometimes needs a kick in the ass…
But, you know, socialism (and in that manner communism/Marxism) is just so much more neat and easy … and fair, to be sure. So, why bother, huh? Let’s just chuckitall and designate a King of The World. Got anyone in mind?