Friday, June 24, 2011

Athens Burning

It's an old article but a good one and pertinent once again to contemporary financial events.
It is perhaps an inherent problem wherever the universal franchise is unaccompanied by widespread virtues such as honesty, self-control, providence, prudence and self-respect. Greece is therefore a cradle not only of democracy, but also of democratic corruption.

The Greek demonstrators did not understand, or did not want to understand, that if there were justice in the world, many people, including themselves, would be worse rather than better off, and that a reduction in their salaries and benefits was not only economically necessary but just.
Read of the rest of the article here. The American Founding Fathers knew the score: Democracy ends when the mob becomes corrupted. It's not just the bankers and politicians which are wicked, so are the people.


Anonymous said...

The "rest of the article" link goes right back to your own website.

The Social Pathologist said...

Link Fixed.

Anonymous Protestant said...

The American founders, scattered though they were from Deism to various forms of Protestantism to Catholicism all would have scoffed, some violently, at the notion of human perfectability. All of them knew all too well of the evil that men can do. And so the American Republic was constructed ingeniously to pit interest against interest, government branch against branch, diffusing power as widely as possible while remaining workable.

Many of those protections were chipped away starting about 100 or so years ago, and yet there is still some semblance of the old Republic. One of the weaknesses of pure, unicameral, proportional legislatures or parliaments can be seen at work in Greece.

And yes, the people, bless their dirty, sinful hearts, are just as prone to do evil as any banker, any general, any rabble rouser. Which is why they must have some authority, but not too much.

The Social Pathologist said...

Many of those protections were chipped away starting about 100 or so years ago,

I still think universal suffrage was the most toxic change.