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View Full Version : The Myth That America Is Not A Democracy.



DiabloViejo
07-23-2012, 03:02 PM
(Courtesy of Perishable Democracy)

Myth: The U.S. is not a democracy.

Fact: The U.S. is a representative democracy in every branch of government.

Summary

The U.S. is a democracy -- just not a direct one. Every branch of our government -- executive, legislative, judicial, monetary -- ultimately derives its power from majority rule or approval. By making our democracy indirect instead of direct, the Founders prevented unrestrained mob rule, allowing a more reasonable pace of majority rule, and greater room for compromise.

Argument

Conservatives continually point out that America is not a democracy, but a constitutional republic. This is a quibble over definitions, because a constitutional republic is a type of democracy. Democracy comes in two forms: direct and republican. In a direct democracy, the people vote directly on proposed laws, and government (to the extent that it exists) serves only to put their laws into action. By contrast, a republic is a representative democracy, where laws are passed not by the people, but their elected representatives. Adding the term "constitutional" to the word "republic" is frivolous, since all nations have constitutions.

Why, then, do conservatives insist on this distinction? There are two reasons, both of them trivial. One is to embarrass those who make casual use of the term "democracy." Another is that conservatives are so hostile to democracy that they seek to deny its very name.

But a democracy we are. No matter which branch of government you look into, you'll find the fingerprints of democracy everywhere:

Congress: the people vote on their Senators and Representatives, who then vote on their laws.

The White House: the people vote on a slate of electors, who then vote for the president.

Supreme Court: nine justices vote on the constitutionality of laws.

Supreme Court justices: an elected president nominates a Supreme Court justice, who must pass a vote of confidence from the people's elected Senators.

Constitutional amendments: the people's elected representatives vote on the amendments, which must pass by a supermajority of elected state legislatures.

Cabinet appointees: an elected president nominates cabinet officials, who must pass a vote of confidence from the people's elected Senators.

The Federal Reserve: a board of Federal Reserve governors votes on monetary policy.

The Federal Reserve Board: an elected president nominates members to the Federal Reserve Board, who must pass a vote of confidence from the people's elected Senators.

Notice that a spectrum of democracy exists within these examples. On the more direct end lies the House of Representatives, which elects legislators from relatively small districts every two years. On the more republican end lies the Senate, which elects legislators from much larger states every six years. The extreme in republicanism is the Supreme Court, where the people's representatives elect justices to lifetime tenure.

Also notice that there is no such thing as a 100 percent direct democracy, since voters would be overwhelmed with the requirements of voting on the nuts and bolts of every government operation. Inevitably, democracy requires some degree of delegated authority. Still, the Founders feared more direct forms of democracy, since they believed -- with historical justification -- that they increased the volitility of mob rule, reduced the chances of compromise, allowed more uninformed legislation to pass, and were usually short-lived. Thus, they insisted on a more republican form of government. However, they also knew the danger of going too far in the opposite direction. Too republican, and representatives become impervious to the will of the people. The challenge in designing a democracy is to find the right balance between direct democracy and republicanism.

Ultimately, all democracies -- including republics -- operate at the consent of the majority. By making our democracy more indirect than direct, the Founders did not stop majority rule; they merely slowed it down somewhat. We could fine tune our position on this spectrum either way, of course, but we would have to go miles in the direction of republicanism before we were no longer a democracy.

https://sphotos-a.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ash4/416885_341602139209296_1549407695_n.jpg

cushioncrawler
07-23-2012, 03:38 PM
Truth -- democracy iz a myth.
The best form of rule iz a ruler, a monarchy. No elections.

The worst form of gov and law iz democracy.
The population shoodnt hav a major say or a major vote in anything. A show of hands iz ok.

The living are selfish, and the future will suffer.
And the living are mostly idiots. Did i mention superstitious.
mac.

Soflasnapper
07-23-2012, 05:05 PM
I agree, except for the part about the Fed.

The president's control of the Fed is nearly nil.

He does not nominate for Senate approval all the board, but rather 7 of the 12, iirc. The Fed chairman's term is not coterminous with the president's term, so presidents end up stuck with someone else's Fed chair for some years until they can get their own nominee.

And basically, the banking system itself passes on who CAN BE NOMINATED well before the president can weigh in.

The Fed is NOT part of the government, and the Federal Reserve Board of Governors doesn't particularly really control the action, which is centralized in the Open Market Committee controlled out of the New York Regional Federal Reserve and the president that bank itself elects.

LWW
07-24-2012, 01:06 AM
It's typical that your truth is based on lies.

Can you cite for me where you have any right to vote for POTUS?

How about the SCOTUS?

What's that?

You can't?

But ... I already knew that.

The reality is that nearly all of the nation's fiscal problems stem from both houses of congress being elected by popular vote.

LWW
07-24-2012, 01:10 AM
<div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Originally Posted By: DiabloViejo</div><div class="ubbcode-body">

https://sphotos-a.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ash4/416885_341602139209296_1549407695_n.jpg </div></div>

Don't you feel better speaking your true belief.

Qtec
07-24-2012, 01:38 AM
<div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Quote:</div><div class="ubbcode-body">It's typical that your truth is based on lies. </div></div>

What lies?

Q

LWW
07-24-2012, 02:01 AM
That America is a democracy ... that you have a right to vote in a federal election ... I could go on, but I'm way over your head already.

Qtec
07-24-2012, 02:08 AM
Geez, wasn't there just a general election where a President was chosen?

Its strange that that such a fraud could go unnoticed! /forums/images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/crazy.gif

When Bush was elected POTUS, I didn't hear any objections from you, or is this just a recent thing?

Q

Qtec
07-24-2012, 02:09 AM
<div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Quote:</div><div class="ubbcode-body"><span style='font-size: 20pt'>That America is a democracy</span> </div></div>

Are you NOW saying America IS a Democracy? This is a major flip-flop!

Q

DiabloViejo
07-24-2012, 02:13 AM
You are absolutely right about one thing..you are absolutely way over your head. Please continue to elaborate on your views.

LWW
07-24-2012, 03:19 AM
<div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Originally Posted By: Qtec</div><div class="ubbcode-body">Geez, wasn't there just a general election where a President was chosen?

Its strange that that such a fraud could go unnoticed! /forums/images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/crazy.gif

When Bush was elected POTUS, I didn't hear any objections from you, or is this just a recent thing?

Q </div></div>

Why don't you answer the question?

LWW
07-24-2012, 03:20 AM
<div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Originally Posted By: Qtec</div><div class="ubbcode-body"> <div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Quote:</div><div class="ubbcode-body"><span style='font-size: 20pt'>That America is a democracy</span> </div></div>

Are you NOW saying America IS a Democracy? This is a major flip-flop!

Q </div></div>

Nope ... You asked whatthe lie was, and I gave you a direct answer.

But, truth always has confused you.

LWW
07-24-2012, 03:21 AM
<div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Originally Posted By: DiabloViejo</div><div class="ubbcode-body">You are absolutely right about one thing..you are absolutely way over your head. Please continue to elaborate on your views. </div></div>

Why don't you answer the questions?

Gayle in MD
07-24-2012, 06:02 AM
<span style="color: #990000">The only thing that Repiglicans are good at, is using semantics to cover up whatever reality they need to deny.

Of course, we are a Democratic Representative Republic!

Wonder why it never occurs to the RW deniers that if we are not a Democratic Representative Republic, what the hell Bush was doing "Spreading Democracy" in the Middle East???? Oh, and what number was that, BTW? His mission changed daily as his mission failed and his lies were exposed!

Hundreds of thousand died all because of George W. Bush, Dickhead Cheney, and The American Enterprise Institute, and all for nothing!

What a crock of bull****~ they always are!

G.</span>

LWW
07-24-2012, 02:55 PM
<div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Originally Posted By: Qtec</div><div class="ubbcode-body">Geez, wasn't there just a general election where a President was chosen?

Its strange that that such a fraud could go unnoticed! /forums/images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/crazy.gif

When Bush was elected POTUS, I didn't hear any objections from you, or is this just a recent thing?

Q </div></div>

Upon futher review ... you obviously never understood the question.

No POTUS has ever been elected by a general election.

DiabloViejo
07-24-2012, 03:18 PM
"The procedure for electing a president is spelled out in Article II (http://www.law.cornell.edu/constitution/articleii/) . Each state is entitled to a number of electors equal to that state's representation in Congress (Senate + House). Since each state has two senators and at least one Representative, every state has at least three electors. Currently California has the largest number of electors: 55. The electors meet in their respective state capitals in December of each election year to cast their votes for president and vice president. These electors, who together form the electoral college, are the ones who actually elect the president. If no candidate gets a majority of the electoral vote, the House of Representatives elects the president, with each state having one vote. This happened in 1800 and again in 1824.

Each state is free to choose its electors as it wishes. In the 18th Century, America was largely rural and most people were farmers who knew little about politics. In this climate, a direct election of the president would probably have been difficult in any case. In the early days of the nation, electors were chosen due to their wisdom and knowledge of politics, not due to their preference for any particular candidate. Even in the modern world, direct election of a distant president is not always so easy. For example, the European Union does not have a direct election for its president. Instead, a complex system exists in which countries, not citizens, are the key players, exactly like the role of the states in the U.S.

Each state determines how its electors are chosen by state law and the process varies from state to state. In states with primary elections, each presidential candidate usually designates a slate of electors who then appear on the November ballot.<span style="color: #000099"> The voters are then actually voting for a slate of electors<u> pledged to one candidate or another</u>.</span> In caucus states, the electors may be chosen at the state caucus." LINK (http://electoral-vote.com/evp2012/Info/electoral-college.html)

<span style="color: #000099">Is there anything in the above that indicates that our Republic does not operate as a representative democracy? No. Class dismissed! LWW, please don your dunce cap and go sit in the corner and stew in your fear, ignorance, and loathing!</span>

LWW
07-24-2012, 03:40 PM
Declaring that a "representative democracy" exists is like declaring that "living dead" exist.

Declaring them to be does not make them be.

DiabloViejo
07-24-2012, 03:51 PM
I can explain things to you, but I can't understand them for you. This might just be the reason why you can't comprehend...

http://blog.lib.umn.edu/farre212/f11psy1001ds1415/small-brain-shanghai-homer-simpson.jpg

LWW
07-24-2012, 03:55 PM
And again ... when shown you are wrong you present evidence that I'm right and start personal attacks.

I am ashamed for you.

DiabloViejo
07-24-2012, 03:59 PM
ROTFLMMFAO! You should be proud of me! After all, I learned all my tactics from you! /forums/images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/laugh.gif /forums/images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/laugh.gif /forums/images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/laugh.gif

And btw you, haven't shown diddley-squat other than your blind ignorance!

LWW
07-24-2012, 04:06 PM
If by that you mean that you lack the intellectual horsepower to even stay in my rear view mirror, so you attempt to mimic ... much like an aboriginal member of a cargo cult mimics modern civilzation ... that which you can't understand, then I concur with you.

DiabloViejo
07-24-2012, 04:14 PM
Oh yes, you are indeed an intellectual colossus aren't you? /forums/images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/laugh.gif

http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-vA5yzp6VNIY/TfuIavgQgNI/AAAAAAAAARQ/vXrwIBfHKaQ/s1600/drooling_homer-712749.png

LWW
07-24-2012, 04:16 PM
From your point of view, hippie pool is an intellectual colossus.

DiabloViejo
07-24-2012, 04:49 PM
From my point of view, compared to you, he <u>is</u> an intellectual colossus! /forums/images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/grin.gif

LWW
07-25-2012, 03:49 AM
Mimicing again I see.

DiabloViejo
07-25-2012, 04:00 AM
<div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Originally Posted By: LWW</div><div class="ubbcode-body">Mimicing again I see. </div></div>

WTF is mimicing? /forums/images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/laugh.gif

Stretch
07-25-2012, 05:22 AM
<div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Originally Posted By: DiabloViejo</div><div class="ubbcode-body"><div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Originally Posted By: LWW</div><div class="ubbcode-body">Mimicing again I see. </div></div>

WTF is mimicing? /forums/images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/laugh.gif </div></div>

That must be, when LWW imitates South Park. St.

Qtec
07-25-2012, 08:02 AM
LOL


Q

LWW
07-25-2012, 03:52 PM
OOC ...did any of y'all actually read the linked article?

I suspect not, because the argument condensed requires massive doublethink.

The author's position ... clearly stated ... is that the USA is a democracy, not because it is a democracy, but because the author choses to redefine the word "DEMOCRACY" to mean "THAT WHICH IS NOT A DEMOCRACY" ... and our resident leftbots nod their heads in collectivist unison.