Tuesday, January 7, 2020

paradox or simultaneity

Is it "paradox" or is it simple "simultaneity?"  Paradox suggests a problem to be fixed. Simultaneity suggests oh-well-that's-just-the-way-it-is.

At issue, so to speak:

On the one hand: "democracy is the worst form of government except for all the rest." Never mind who said it or when or how. The meat on the bone remains and the probable truth remains with it, I think. Governments are a risky business at best. But for all that, the word "democracy" is flung about like some much-loved Teddy bear. One man, one vote. Yum.

On the other hand Baron Rochefoucault's maxim, "the intelligence of the mass is inversely proportionate to its number." Or, the greater the number, the dumber things get.

So ... which is it? I think the answer is both. Both are true and it's just tough-titty who may try to unravel what some call a paradox.

Everyone should have a say. That's democracy. And yet when everyone has a say, everyone ends up saying much the same thing: It's cozier that way. Cozier and yet dumber. Democracy is smarter in some ways and yet its stupidity hangs out like some untucked T-shirt.

Oh well, I'm working on this.....


  1. Paradox or Simultaneity?

    The matter is far more complex than any ordinary short form can encapsulate. Thank you for trying.

    We live in a country whose governing form is s republic, which has certain characteristics of a so-called democracy. (Such terms as "democracy" and "republic" gave legal and historical aspects which are barely understood by most Americans, unfortunately.)

    Our government nominally considered a republic with certain democratic features lives in the raw unfettered world of politics, power, money, greed, anger, disinformation, as well as generosity, compassion, science and wisdom.

    Right now our government is not working properly. Many of the people who are supposed to advocating the best interests of the American people are not doing their jobs correctly.

    I came across this little nugget which made me realize once again that good governance takes many forms and that the best guidelines for good governance can be shredded all too easily.

    "When the best leader governs, the people
    are hardly aware that he exists.
    Next best is a leader who is loved.
    Next, one who is feared.
    The worst is one who is despised.

    "If you don't trust the people,
    you make them untrustworthy.

    "The best leader doesn't talk, he acts.
    When his work is done,
    the people say, 'Amazing:
    we did it, all by ourselves!'"

    - Tao Te Ching chapter 17