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Democracy is fucked up
#11
RE: Democracy is fucked up
(January 10, 2017 at 4:07 pm)Zenith Wrote:
(December 12, 2016 at 4:59 pm)Minimalist Wrote: Yeah.... same thing happened here, too.

@Tazzycorn  --- something's wrong with the page, it brings Minimalist's post when I issue the reply to you.

I used to believe that as well.

But you have to consider how it actually works in practice, and if it tends to yield good results or bad results, in most democratic countries.
That is, if, say, only 5-10% of the democratic countries are performing well, then it's very likely that the cause in those countries are the people (e.g. a better culture, mentality), rather than say that the system is the cause.

Otherwise, even the Feudal system, or Communism, or Christianity, for that matter, you could say is good - and that it is the people who keep them from working properly.

I believe, a good system is one that takes into account the weaknesses of the people, considers its deficiencies, and thus keep risks low, not one that blames the people for not being able to make it work.

Um no, it isn't either or, but both. If you have a lopsided government, like our now monopoly GOP gerrymandered government, that part is NOT the fault of Dems, but their party's effective marketing to get voters to support them. But, it is our fault as voters for not participating especially at local and state and midterms. Outside that I do agree that our corporate climate is far too full of assholes who like socializing the profits to the CEOs and shareholders and socialize the loses on the tax payers when they lose. That part I do not like. 

I think it is more a time frame issue. Right now the GOP has no right to blame anyone for the corporate welfare they set up and they most certainly are to blame for using the bullshit slur that anyone pointing this out is anti private sector.
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#12
RE: Democracy is fucked up
(December 13, 2016 at 4:19 pm)Tonus Wrote:
(December 12, 2016 at 4:48 pm)Zenith Wrote: 1. In Democracy, everybody - of some minimum age - can vote, and the candidate who wins is he who wins most votes (in most systems)
Problem: When you have 10% of people going to vote, you've got 10% of people deciding the fate for the whole 100% of people.

If 90% of the population made the choice to leave their fate in the hands of the other 10%, then there's not really a problem.  Or if there is, the solution is pretty obvious: the 90% can head to the voting booth.

Your first point is followed by several points about how the electorate is mostly unqualified to make an informed selection at the voting booth.  In which case, if 90% of the voting public is low-IQ, uninformed, incompetent, and has unrealistic expectations... then maybe it's not a problem that only the other 10% are voting.  Maybe that's when democracy works best.

The problem, Tonus, is that in a scenario where 10% of the population go to vote scenario, it is not the smart, knowledgeable ones who go to vote, but the gullible.

I.e. you'll have a distribution such as this one - I take the whole population now:
1% - smart and knowledgeable people who go to vote
9% - gullible, misinformed, manipulated people who go to vote
90% - "I'm not interested in politics!", "all politicians are the same!", "my vote cannot make a difference!", "do you really believe you can change the country?" kind of people, who don't go to vote.

(January 10, 2017 at 4:17 pm)Brian37 Wrote:
(January 10, 2017 at 4:07 pm)Zenith Wrote: @Tazzycorn  --- something's wrong with the page, it brings Minimalist's post when I issue the reply to you.

I used to believe that as well.

But you have to consider how it actually works in practice, and if it tends to yield good results or bad results, in most democratic countries.
That is, if, say, only 5-10% of the democratic countries are performing well, then it's very likely that the cause in those countries are the people (e.g. a better culture, mentality), rather than say that the system is the cause.

Otherwise, even the Feudal system, or Communism, or Christianity, for that matter, you could say is good - and that it is the people who keep them from working properly.

I believe, a good system is one that takes into account the weaknesses of the people, considers its deficiencies, and thus keep risks low, not one that blames the people for not being able to make it work.

Um no, it isn't either or, but both. If you have a lopsided government, like our now monopoly GOP gerrymandered government, that part is NOT the fault of Dems, but their party's effective marketing to get voters to support them. But, it is our fault as voters for not participating especially at local and state and midterms. Outside that I do agree that our corporate climate is far too full of assholes who like socializing the profits to the CEOs and shareholders and socialize the loses on the tax payers when they lose. That part I do not like. 

I think it is more a time frame issue. Right now the GOP has no right to blame anyone for the corporate welfare they set up and they most certainly are to blame for using the bullshit slur that anyone pointing this out is anti private sector.


I believe elections in a democracy is more about gut-feeling than reasoning and scrutinizing candidates and weighing possibilities.
People are biased. They like some candidates, others they do not. Therefore, they find all kinds of excuses for the candidate they support, while the guy they don't like is "corrupt until proven otherwise".

Also, democracy tolerates and even encourages irresponsibility: It is not individuals who work together, hard, for a common goal and evaluate their decisions, but rather people who expect welfare to be given to them by those who have the power.
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#13
RE: Democracy is fucked up
Sure, a democracy can promote that.  We just had a bunch of morons vote for the Trumpster because he promised them handout jobs.  Nevermind that they're underskilled overpriced privilege seekers, that couldn't have been the problem. Somebody took der jyobs!

A democracy, in theory, can promote anything.  The democratically elected leader of a country full of dirtbags is going to be a dirtbag.  Personally, though, I trust in the essential decency of humanity, lol.
I am the Infantry. I am my country’s strength in war, her deterrent in peace. I am the heart of the fight… wherever, whenever. I carry America’s faith and honor against her enemies. I am the Queen of Battle. I am what my country expects me to be, the best trained Soldier in the world. In the race for victory, I am swift, determined, and courageous, armed with a fierce will to win. Never will I fail my country’s trust. Always I fight on…through the foe, to the objective, to triumph overall. If necessary, I will fight to my death. By my steadfast courage, I have won more than 200 years of freedom. I yield not to weakness, to hunger, to cowardice, to fatigue, to superior odds, For I am mentally tough, physically strong, and morally straight. I forsake not, my country, my mission, my comrades, my sacred duty. I am relentless. I am always there, now and forever. I AM THE INFANTRY! FOLLOW ME!
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#14
RE: Democracy is fucked up
What's the alternative?

You have to pick a point somewhere between anarchy and dictatorship. You have to balance personal liberty and societal responsibility. Democracy (or something resembling it) seems to be the best compromise. Of course it has problems. But what else can we do? The tighter the leash, the more open the system is to corruption. And trying to have no government at all would quickly be a hideous failure, I would imagine.
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#15
RE: Democracy is fucked up
I wonder if you are familiar with the concept of 'collective wisdom.' It's a fact that if you have a jar of jelly beans and have people guess, when you average out the guesses of large number of people, it comes out very close to the real number. Another good example is that when people play chess collectively, ie if 100,000 random people vote on what move to do, they play chess at a grandmaster level.

https://www.diplomacy.edu/resources/book...marter-few

That's why even when individuals make it seem like democracy is just a collection of dumbshits making decisions, it works very well.
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#16
RE: Democracy is fucked up
(January 11, 2017 at 11:59 am)CapnAwesome Wrote: I wonder if you are familiar with the concept of 'collective wisdom.' It's a fact that if you have a jar of jelly beans and have people guess, when you average out the guesses of large number of people, it comes out very close to the real number. Another good example is that when people play chess collectively, ie if 100,000 random people vote on what move to do, they play chess at a grandmaster level.

https://www.diplomacy.edu/resources/book...marter-few

That's why even when individuals make it seem like democracy is just a collection of dumbshits making decisions, it works very well.

I disagree. Sorry, but I don't understand how that could work (I only read a few lines from the article). If people just guess, then that's basically just as people throwing dices. And if one guy throws one dice and decides on that, or he throws the dice a dozen of times and averages out, or a bunch of people throw the dice, I don't see how there could be a difference among them, how the odds could change for the better.

The way I see it, democracy can improve a country as best as the average citizen can. You may have brilliant and extremely competent people in a country, but since the best make up less than 5%, they have little to no chance to make a difference - the average people make up 60-90% of the people and they think differently. (and yes, the average people can be idiots)

To make an alegory:

Let's say there is a cat in a room, and the cat needs a surgery because of a health problem.
You select 20 people (1->20), who have a knowledge about surgering a cat, like this:
1,2 - "what's that a cat?"
3->6 - "Yeah, I know what a cat is. What is surgery?"
7->14 - ordinary people who know what surgery is and what a cat is, but have no idea how to treat a cat.
15->18 - inexperienced veterinarians and ordinary medics.
19,20 - experienced veterinarians, who can do surgery on cats.

Now you go to each in his turn and present him the problem - the symptoms the cat experiences. And you give each a piece of paper and tell him "write there what you think should be done, and if it needs a surgery, how it should be done."
Then you pick the notes from everyone, average out the result, or find the most common response.

In this scenario, what chances do you think the cat has to be healed?

That's quite how democracy works. And yes, if such an experiment were to be attempted by hundreds of groups, I suppose some of them would be able to heal the cat.
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#17
RE: Democracy is fucked up
(January 11, 2017 at 1:46 am)Khemikal Wrote: Sure, a democracy can promote that.  We just had a bunch of morons vote for the Trumpster because he promised them handout jobs.  Nevermind that they're underskilled overpriced privilege seekers, that couldn't have been the problem.  Somebody took der jyobs!  

A democracy, in theory, can promote anything.  The democratically elected leader of a country full of dirtbags is going to be a dirtbag.  Personally, though, I trust in the essential decency of humanity, lol.

A democray can, in practice, become an authoritarian dictatorship. It happened before. And if that happens in the future, calling people dirtbags will probably no longer feel gratifying.

Thinking about Trump and USA, I have heard enough anti-Trump people who laugh "Trump supporters are such idiots!", and Trump-supporters who laugh "These anti-Trump people are such idiots!"
For everything I heard that Trump did or did not, the anti-Trump guys laughed at Trump and his supporters how idiots they are, while the Trump supporters laughed back, because for them, the same event was obvious evidence that Trump is great and that the anti-Trump reaction is retarded.
Calling the others stupid or dirtbags is simple and easy, but pointless.

And as for myself, I don't trust in the essential decency of humanity. After all, humanity managed to commit outrageous genocides using people who believed they were doing good.

I have seen even otherwise-intelligent persons who value justice supporting corrupted politicians and supporting the idea of removing important people from the justice system - people who were responsible for throwing corrupt politicians and corrupt business people to jail. How? The answer is propaganda.

Basically, if a powerful political party (as big & powerful as the Republican for USA) controls the media - the ones the majority of the people follow, they can convince many that the heads of the justice system are extremely corrupt and puppets of the other political party, that all those found guilty and those sentenced are actually not only innocent people, but victims fallen to illegal & disgusting political attacks (such as the Nazi party sending to prison their political opponents), and that the real corrupt and evil people are out there, free. Then you can see good people, even intelligent ones, who value justice, support a battle against it.

It all comes down to the enviroment you live in, which influences how likely you are to scrutinize one thing, and which you are more readily able to believe, how knowledgeable you are about how people are, perhaps some psychology and understanding how manipulation of the masses works, how the economy of a country works, etc. And a good understanding of the self.

But for the ordinary citizen, who is not aware nor knowledgeabe about everything, who cannot defend himself against all kinds of manipulation, it all comes down to trust. If a political party (e.g. Social Democrats) convinces the majority to trust them, then they will easily buy into every piece of propaganda and of 'evidence' they say.

So yes, in the mix of democray you also have media, propaganda, and human frailty. Which, if you apply to a whole country, you can also get Nazism or Communism.

(January 11, 2017 at 7:10 am)robvalue Wrote: What's the alternative?

You have to pick a point somewhere between anarchy and dictatorship. You have to balance personal liberty and societal responsibility. Democracy (or something resembling it) seems to be the best compromise. Of course it has problems. But what else can we do? The tighter the leash, the more open the system is to corruption. And trying to have no government at all would quickly be a hideous failure, I would imagine.

What's the alternative? Perhaps the same thing people in the middle ages thought about their own system, Feudalism. And did nothing.

My point is, the only way for the system to change, or to improve, is if people spend time thinking, conceptualizing what would work better.
Even though I have no hope of changing the Constitution of my country, nor you of yours, trying to observe the problems that are now and trying to figure what could solve them I find a better thing to do than hope for a messiah candidate or for a saviour political party to make the country better.

For instance, one particular thing I've been thinking:
I don't like that in my country the government is basically established by the parliament. This means that if a political party managed 51% of votes in parliament, they kick out the previous government and set their own. And for the ministry of health, for instance, you get an idiot to manage the health system, one who barely visited a hospital in all his life. And all this happens because a great bunch of schmucks, who have no idea about anything around them, happened to trust that political party.

I'm wondering how it would be like if the minister of health was elected not by the politicians who care to implement their own agenda, not by people who have no idea what they're doing, but by medics, who do actually live a great part of their lives in hospitals treating patients and experience themselves the problems in the health system.
I suppose such a thing would be neither democratic - it is not all people who vote - nor dictatorship / authoritarian.
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#18
RE: Democracy is fucked up
(January 10, 2017 at 4:19 pm)Zenith Wrote: The problem, Tonus, is that in a scenario where 10% of the population go to vote scenario, it is not the smart, knowledgeable ones who go to vote, but the gullible.

How smart can they be if they're leaving their fate in the hands of a small group of gullible people, whose influence they could negate by taking the simple action of voting?
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#19
RE: Democracy is fucked up
(January 21, 2017 at 3:31 pm)Zenith Wrote:
(January 11, 2017 at 11:59 am)CapnAwesome Wrote: I wonder if you are familiar with the concept of 'collective wisdom.' It's a fact that if you have a jar of jelly beans and have people guess, when you average out the guesses of large number of people, it comes out very close to the real number. Another good example is that when people play chess collectively, ie if 100,000 random people vote on what move to do, they play chess at a grandmaster level.

https://www.diplomacy.edu/resources/book...marter-few

That's why even when individuals make it seem like democracy is just a collection of dumbshits making decisions, it works very well.

I disagree. Sorry, but I don't understand how that could work (I only read a few lines from the article). If people just guess, then that's basically just as people throwing dices. And if one guy throws one dice and decides on that, or he throws the dice a dozen of times and averages out, or a bunch of people throw the dice, I don't see how there could be a difference among them, how the odds could change for the better.

The way I see it, democracy can improve a country as best as the average citizen can. You may have brilliant and extremely competent people in a country, but since the best make up less than 5%, they have little to no chance to make a difference - the average people make up 60-90% of the people and they think differently. (and yes, the average people can be idiots)

To make an alegory:

Let's say there is a cat in a room, and the cat needs a surgery because of a health problem.
You select 20 people (1->20), who have a knowledge about surgering a cat, like this:
1,2 - "what's that a cat?"
3->6 - "Yeah, I know what a cat is. What is surgery?"
7->14 - ordinary people who know what surgery is and what a cat is, but have no idea how to treat a cat.
15->18 - inexperienced veterinarians and ordinary medics.
19,20 - experienced veterinarians, who can do surgery on cats.

Now you go to each in his turn and present him the problem - the symptoms the cat experiences. And you give each a piece of paper and tell him "write there what you think should be done, and if it needs a surgery, how it should be done."
Then you pick the notes from everyone, average out the result, or find the most common response.

In this scenario, what chances do you think the cat has to be healed?

That's quite how democracy works. And yes, if such an experiment were to be attempted by hundreds of groups, I suppose some of them would be able to heal the cat.

It doesn't matter if you don't think it would work, it does work. People in large groups play as a grandmaster. 50,000 people on plurality vote played a very close game with Gary Kasporav, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kasparov_versus_the_World Also the thing about the Jelly beans is a repeatable experiment that's been done hundreds, if not thousands of times. People make more accurate decisions in large group votes.
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#20
RE: Democracy is fucked up
(January 21, 2017 at 5:34 pm)Zenith Wrote: A democray can, in practice, become an authoritarian dictatorship.
-and a pile off eggs and flour and sugar can become a cake..but then it;s no longer a pile of eggs and flour and sugar.  / shrugs

Quote:It happened before. And if that happens in the future, calling people dirtbags will probably no longer feel gratifying.
Agree to disagree?  It's always going to be fun, to me, to call a dirtbag a dirtbag.  

Quote:Thinking about Trump and USA, I have heard enough anti-Trump people who laugh "Trump supporters are such idiots!", and Trump-supporters who laugh "These anti-Trump people are such idiots!"
Sure.

Quote:For everything I heard that Trump did or did not, the anti-Trump guys laughed at Trump and his supporters how idiots they are, while the Trump supporters laughed back, because for them, the same event was obvious evidence that Trump is great and that the anti-Trump reaction is retarded.
Right, because some people think that racism is retarded, but racists think it's just swell and non-racists are retarded.......?

Quote:Calling the others stupid or dirtbags is simple and easy, but pointless.
OH, idk, you might catch a few that aren't too far gone...just caught up in something retarded.

Quote:And as for myself, I don't trust in the essential decency of humanity. After all, humanity managed to commit outrageous genocides using people who believed they were doing good.
A lopsided view of what humanity managed...but yeah, sure...genocide has occurred...and even then there were little rays of human sunshine.  

Quote:I have seen even otherwise-intelligent persons who value justice supporting corrupted politicians and supporting the idea of removing important people from the justice system - people who were responsible for throwing corrupt politicians and corrupt business people to jail. How? The answer is propaganda.
Sure.  Propaganda, however, isn't a problem for democracy uniquely.  It works (or doesn't) on us individually.  

Quote:Basically, if a powerful political party (as big & powerful as the Republican for USA) controls the media - the ones the majority of the people follow, they can convince many that the heads of the justice system are extremely corrupt and puppets of the other political party, that all those found guilty and those sentenced are actually not only innocent people, but victims fallen to illegal & disgusting political attacks (such as the Nazi party sending to prison their political opponents), and that the real corrupt and evil people are out there, free. Then you can see good people, even intelligent ones, who value justice, support a battle against it.
Human beings have predictable and exploitable flaws, agreed.

Quote:It all comes down to the enviroment you live in, which influences how likely you are to scrutinize one thing, and which you are more readily able to believe, how knowledgeable you are about how people are, perhaps some psychology and understanding how manipulation of the masses works, how the economy of a country works, etc. And a good understanding of the self.
Most of the time...it;s not so complicated as all that.  Not because it couldn't be, because it doesn't have to be.  How much of the above do you think has any play to a racist?  Even if they -knew- x y and z...they'd still be racist dirtbags.  Plenty of smart assholes in the world.  

Quote:But for the ordinary citizen, who is not aware nor knowledgeabe about everything, who cannot defend himself against all kinds of manipulation, it all comes down to trust. If a political party (e.g. Social Democrats) convinces the majority to trust them, then they will easily buy into every piece of propaganda and of 'evidence' they say.
Sure

Quote:So yes, in the mix of democray you also have media, propaganda, and human frailty. Which, if you apply to a whole country, you can also get Nazism or Communism.
Neither of which were democracies...bringing us pack round to piles of eggs, flour and sugar.
I am the Infantry. I am my country’s strength in war, her deterrent in peace. I am the heart of the fight… wherever, whenever. I carry America’s faith and honor against her enemies. I am the Queen of Battle. I am what my country expects me to be, the best trained Soldier in the world. In the race for victory, I am swift, determined, and courageous, armed with a fierce will to win. Never will I fail my country’s trust. Always I fight on…through the foe, to the objective, to triumph overall. If necessary, I will fight to my death. By my steadfast courage, I have won more than 200 years of freedom. I yield not to weakness, to hunger, to cowardice, to fatigue, to superior odds, For I am mentally tough, physically strong, and morally straight. I forsake not, my country, my mission, my comrades, my sacred duty. I am relentless. I am always there, now and forever. I AM THE INFANTRY! FOLLOW ME!
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