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January 10, 2020 / Congau

Deceitful Democracy

Democracy can never fail because if it does it’s not a democracy anymore. This, of course, is a meaningless observation since the concepts are tied according to definition and nothing could conceivably happen that would prove it wrong. Nevertheless, it is often used as a sophistic trick, probably without realizing that the claim lacks substance.

Democracy needs a certain stability to exist. In times of turmoil it’s not possible to organize proper elections and when attempts are made, they are bound to fail. Then it will not be said that democracy has failed since it was not carried through anyway.

Also, when a seemingly working democracy is suddenly disrupted, it will not constitute a failure since it then goes out of existence, and what doesn’t exist, doesn’t fail.

It has been said that two democracies have never fought a war against each other. Of course not. In a war at least one of the sides, usually the other side, the one you don’t belong to, will be considered an unjust and messy place (why else would you fight it?) and consequently not a democracy.

All other political systems may fail. Communism is generally condemned as a failure whenever it doesn’t work perfectly, which is always, while perfection is not expected of democracy.

The meaning of democracy is sufficiently vague to serve as a label for whatever is on your side; whatever falls relatively neatly into place as a stable mainstream.

Words are deceitful. They are used for persuasion and manipulation, and when their definitions are unclear but their positive sound undisputed, anything can be proven.

Democracy is good, and whenever something is good, it is democracy. If that is the underlying secret premise, it is better not to reach a conclusion, for it will not say what you think it says. Don’t talk about democracy until you know what it means. I will say no more.

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