Oct 22 2008

Not new, but probably true

Category: freedom,philosophy,politicsharmonicminer @ 9:39 am

I was reminded of this at azusapacificalumni.com

About the time our original thirteen states adopted their new constitution in 1787, Alexander Tyler, a Scottish history professor at the University of Edinburgh, had this to say about the fall of Athenian Republic some 2000 years earlier: “A democracy is always temporary in nature: it simply cannot exist as a pemanent form of government.”
“A democracy will continue to exist up until the time voters discover they can vote themselves generous gifts from the public treasury.”

“From that moment on, the majority always vote for the candidates who promise the most benefits from the public treasury, with the result that every democracy will finally collapse due to loose fiscal policy, which is always followed by a dictatorship.”
“The average age of the world’s greatist civilizations from the beginning of history, has been about 200 years.”
“During those 200 years, those nations always progressed through the following sequence:
1. From bondage to spiritual faith;
2. From spiritual faith to great courage;
3. From courage to liberty;
4. From liberty to abundance;
5. From abundance to complacency;
6. From complacence to apathy;
7. From apathy to dependence;
8. From dependence back into bondage

Professor Tyler missed an essential point, because he would never have been able to predict a democracy in which people who do not produce anything would be allowed to vote. Allowing people to vote for themselves, to get benefits paid for by others, was never on Tyler’s radar. He would have laughed at the idea of unemployed people having the same vote as employed people, and being allowed to vote for the employed people’s goods to be taken from them and given to the unemployed.

So I would change a couple of the steps, I think. For one group of people, the chain of change is this:

5 From abundance to envy.
6 From envy to demand.
7 From demand to acquiescence (the best word I could think of to convey settling for less freedom to get more [temporary] security)
8 From acquiescence to dependence.
9 From dependence to bondage.

If our envying class was sufficiently complacent or apathetic, they wouldn’t get out and vote for what they demand, and so would never have the chance to acquiesce to the loss of freedom for the sake of another government handout.

And for some of those who have abundance:

5 From abundance to guilt… or fear.
6 From guilt or fear to acquiescence.
7 From acquiescence to dependence.
8 From dependence to bondage.

In either case, the result is the same. The critical step, the one that cannot be retraced in the opposite direction, is acquiescence. Once you give up your liberty (including the liberty NOT to have abundance), you have to start at the very beginning, and do it all over again. You cannot simply turn the clock back a step.

So, clarity: our freedom will be lost for us by those who envy, and those who harbor guilt and fear. When they are in the majority, it’s all over but counting the hanging chads.

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One Response to “Not new, but probably true”

  1. enharmonic says:

    So who is this azusapacificalumni.com nutcase anyway? Sheesh!

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