Democracy’s Dog Days by Victor Davis Hanson. August 26th, 2013
We all want democracy to thrive and flourish, but can it?
The Obama administration was quite pleased that the anti-democratic Mohamed Morsi and his Muslim Brotherhood had come to power through a single plebiscite. That confidence required a great deal of moral blindness, both of the present and past.
Like other once-elected authoritarians who believe that democracy is similar to a bus route — in the words of Mr. Erdogan of Turkey, once you get to your stop, you get off — Morsi had no intention of fostering the sort of consensual institutions so necessary for republican government. Almost immediately he gave a de facto green light to cleanse the government of his opponents, to Islamicize a once largely secular society, and to persecute religious minorities.
. It appears that the Turkish Erdogan government and the Islamic Brotherhood utterly hoodwinked the US State Department and Obama into believing a rather threadbare lie, about their support of broad base elective government.
But more basically, only fools believe that good government is simply about elections. We spout ‘democracy!’ and yet our own nation is a republic not a pure democracy and is vastly better off because of that difference. You have to believe in government by and for the people before plebiscites, elections, voting, matter much. Our nation has evolved towards more direct elections over centuries, decades, years, and it is clear some of this is good, but even in our highly stable elective system it is not clear all direct ‘democracy’ is good