• People Talk and My Ear Bleeds


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    Saturday, March 05, 2005

    Vova Putin

    I'm incredulous. Nina Kruscheva elucidates why the Russian people would want an autocrat like Putin running their country. It makes sense. I just shake my head. Why can't they see? What can be done to show them the blessings of true democracy? You can have pride in your country without sacrificing individual liberties and possibly life itself to a strong central government and powerful ruler.

    In fact, this causes me to think about democracies in general. The founding fathers must have been inspired by Deity. They came together with a new experiment, a government based on the will of the people, directed by the people. It was the first of its kind since the "old experiment," the all-male democracy of athens, or possibly the Roman Republic.

    Our fathers set up a system of checks and balances. They dreamt of a government that protected the individual liberties of the citizens and evinced their collective desires. It had three branches, a strong executive to lead, a Congress to represent the collective voices of their consituents and check the executive from dictatorial power, and a judicial court that ruled on the legality and morality of moves by both branches (and the public) to keep the government true to the principles it was founded upon.

    Yet other democracies do not follow this plan. Admittedly, I don't understand them thorougly, but I do realize that the head executive is the Prime minister, who is also the head of the parliament. This effectively melds both Congress and the executive into one branch. And while I don't know specifics of this system, I am aware that the penchant for autocracy among democracies in this form is greater than ours. A blended executive and congress seems to give great power to those elected, instead of using the voice of the people as a check.

    Why is it that America, the first democracy, who touts it throughout the world, sets up government systems along the other style? Shouldn't we be proud of our form of government? How the founding fathers drew it up? When we help raise up new democracies in other parts of the world (like Iraq) shouldn't we set it up along our model? Are we implicitly saying our model isn't the best by not using it?

    I am going to look into these alternate forms of government so that I can be more informed. But from what I know, the structure of our government is inspired, it runs well, and it should be propagated as the standard of democracy. Then, maybe, the Russians could have their cake (a strong leader) and eat it too (individual liberties and national pride).

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