[FoRK] "What did the president know and when did he know it?"

Ian Andrew Bell FoRK fork
Wed Jul 6 13:40:22 PDT 2005


On 6-Jul-05, at 12:22 PM, Stephen D. Williams wrote:

> It isn't hard to imagine that Western Democracy has pretty much  
> proven better than all other tried or known alternatives.

It sure isn't, as long as you're a Western capitalist.  I should  
suggest that the game is undoubtedly rigged for Western Democracy to  
look great if you only view the political spectrum from a Western,  
Democratic perspective.  Just because Communism (Soviet-style)  
doesn't really exist anymore doesn't mean it's better or worse than  
Western Democratic (read:  Free Market Capitalism) systems ... it  
means that it has difficulty existing in competition with Western  
Capitalism.

By example, note that except for consistent attempts at interference  
on the part of Western Capitalist nations in supporting corrupt drug- 
dealing rebels and puppet governments; burying nations in foreign  
debt; and placing restrictive trade barriers in their stead, the  
countries of Latin and South America have over the course of history  
always tipped toward communist, or at least socialist,  
governments.    Why do you think that is?  Collective delusion?  How  
does such a delusion differ from the American Delusion known as the  
Republican Party?

> Make that 10-20 years ago, assuming that the thorough education of  
> the world's peoples is primarily based on the Internet and other  
> pervasive communication (cheap long distance, satellite TV).

...which will teach them to buy so much Pepsi they can't afford  
goat's milk for the babies, or will convince them to buy Levi's Jeans  
instead of books for their kids.  Technology alone is not equal to  
education.  In fact, the great social experiment that is America  
seems to have proven it detracts from education, especially when it  
is relied upon to do the job unsupervised.

Americans have had broadcast TV for 50+ years now, radio for 80,  
telephones for about as long, satellite TV for 20 years, the public  
internet for 10 years, and the kids you're cranking out of your  
schools are bigger idiots now than ever before.  Ironically, while  
they're in the bottom 10% of the global educational system, they all  
assume that they're in the top 10%.  Of course, nobody in standard  
U.S. math courses taught the kids what the "tenth percentile"  
actually means, so they can't possibly understand the academic  
surveys which reveal statistically how stupid they really are.. an  
excellent strategy!

Since when was the US a functional democracy?  Or Canada, for that  
matter, which has been dominated by a single party virtually  
uninterrupted since Confederation?  We Canadians have an oligarchy  
which is inconveniently interrupted by ultimately meaningless elections.

I realize this is a group of technology professionals but please,  
folks, develop some perspective by realizing where you sit, and how  
that stands in stark contrast to where the rest of the world sits.  I  
might agree that Western Democracy is pretty good for ME but I am not  
about to smash around the neighbourhood imposing MY perspective on  
the peoples in nations I know little (if not nothing) about.

-Ian.




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