is cipro safe for stage 3 kidney disease can you take ambien after viagra prednisone 10 mg and weight gain sildenafil zentiva 100 mg preis is it safe to take advil with ciprofloxacin buy generic cialis online canada pharmacy safe website to buy cialis gi specialists in shreveport la 150 mg viagra reviews q pasa despues de usar cytotec australian customs and viagra costco accutane how to use viagra doctor advice in hindi finasteride 1 mg composicion doxycycline 100 mg how to take novapirina 25 mg of zoloft how long those it take for cialis to go in effect safest way to take accutane cialis nachnahme kaufen slabesti cu metformin buy viagra from lloyds interactions with doxycycline is singapore viagra safe what is a safe dose of cialis cipro basics 500 mg filmtabl viagra spray cost in india prednisone 2.5 mg viagra kaufen ohne rezept schweiz metformin hcl er generic name hydrocortisone ciprofloxacin europe purchase glucophage guercmorteo dove acquistare viagra online sicuro can you get cialis in cabo and take through customs is it ok to take zithromax 500 mg for 6 days daily viagra for cheap comprar cialis confianza buy herbal viagra jellies agua oxigenada 20 volumenes donde comprar viagra diflucan 150 mg 1 dose antibiotic for chlamydia missed dose of propecia free viagra sample cipro eye drops brand name zoloft price chemist warehouse prednisolone 50 mg preisvergleich schweiz kamagra viagra uk cost of viagra nhs que es el amoxil grupo farmacologico metformin 500 mg comprar cialis de forma segura viagra cialis india price will viagra gold 800 my really work anyone take clomid for 6 days brand cialis lowest price about generic cialis doxycycline 100mg uses propranolol 40 mg restless leg syndrome cialis 2.5 mg cheep what is safer cialis or viagra viagra in farmacii pret cost of viagra in tx levofloxacin vs ciprofloxacin kann viagra verkaufen how can i buy viagra from ksa is 150 mg too high a dose of viagra how to test generic viagra clarity xl 500 mg metformin cost doxycycline malaria prevention cheapest place to get clomid onde comprar priligy dapoxetina ciprofloxacin dergboadre cost receita para comprar clomid prednisolone acis 50 mg tabletten dispenser is viagra safe when on methadone is there generic metformin is 20mg accutane strong enough break down viagra price in australia liskantin 250 mg wirkstoff cialis buying prescription cialis clomid reviews uk cialis 5mg stay in system cheapest prices for viagra propecia prix maroc clomid no prescription canada best cum with viagra viagra in celebrities cipro 1000 mg bid dental abscess lisinopril viagra combination buy cialis 40mg online australia what is the generic drug for cipro 300 mg zoloft ocd viagra kanaren kaufen web md generic cialis what can i be allergic to in cialis sildenafil 20 mg uses componenta formatiei generic viagra metformin causing hair loss in men pilule viagra prix auto comprar viagra lisboa what is cipro 500mg furoxona tabletas generico do viagra cialis recreational use effects doxycycline 100mg in the sun remedio levoid 50 mg zoloft viagra 50 mg cost buy nolvadex with paypal online clomid and proviron in male infertility doxycycline for mrsa in lungs bula do tolrest 25 mg zoloft 1 semana de embarazo cytotec online cheap viagra top is 750 mg of cipro bad diflucan safe for breastfeeding semillas de amapolas donde comprar viagra can lasix cause vomiting cheap tadalafil 5mg without a prescription thuoc adalat la 60 mg prednisone real life experience with clomid ovulation viagra femenino en farmacias como comprar viagra en farmacia sin receta priligy dapoxetina generico brasil buy online p viagra viagracheap onesite com doxycycline antibiotic acne reviews non prescription viagra alternatives over the counter propecia for sale paypal viagra 100mg price in bangalore brand pills viagra viagra paypal paymend what does female viagra do to a woman 100 mg clomid and ovulation cialis with no prescription canada pil cytotec online pharmacy where to buy generic cialis overnight cuantas veces se puede usar la pastilla cytotec best time to take metformin once a day viagra tabletonline effets secondaires du cialis 20mg asda generic viagra generic doxycycline shortage cialis price at target pharmacy generic viagra capsules and india where can u buy clomid in the uk treatment for doxycycline resistant chlamydia lasix dosage pulmonary edema buy bags online india cheap viagra cialis how much manila price dapoxetine 30 mg and sildenafil 50mg tablets sale canadian cialis pharmacy online importing cialis to european union mode action viagra for sale cialis 10 mg tablete cjene 50mg viagra sales ascites esenciales puros donde comprar viagra viagra suppliers in montreal dosaggio viagra 25 mg zoloft online australia vigorex sildenafil 50 mg viagra airport uk sildenafil 20 mg for ed how much per pill viagra einzeln online bestellen lacticare lotion generic viagra viagra generico en mexico precio de gasolina buy viagra from canada without perscription viagra in men walmaer cost of cialis generic doxycycline 50mg furosemide lasix dosage sulfacet prednisolone oph sol 5 ml is viagra covered by medicare australia 3 400 a8 25 mg of zoloft viagra pfizer uk sites propecia costs expensive can you take viagra 3 days in a row ciprofloxacin hcl 100 mg capsule viagra tongue pills finasteride price paypal do clomid really work made in sud gomorroidi prednisone cialis 30 mg paypal kilo sports clomid reviews cost of cialis 5 mg. at walgreens welches ist das beste viagra generic substitute for ciprodex otic suspension generic cialis ervaringen travelbird is viagra legal cialis in store in uk viagra spray dooz 99000 online edmonton supplier uk propecia diflucan jack newman medication dose for diflucan liquid accutane cost in mexico mono amoxil rash metformin and prometrium lowest price viagra 100mg diflucan capsule 150mg price in peso cialis tablets tadalafil pramil viagra online sildenafil price uk stamps zovirax 200 mg tabletas digitalizadoras how often do you take doxycycline 100mg cialis daily use cost medicare coverage does doxycycline cause facial flushing target pharmacy prices cialis 20 mg ms magazine founded buy cialis online feedback of mankind sildenafil 100 in india same day delivery cialis hong kong hotel propranolol in capillary hemangiomas study island why is ampicillin used in growth medium for shoot genuine cialis purchase ampicillin dosage for gbs best cost for accutane 30 mg where to buy viagra in singapore airport take finasteride safely metformin hcl 500 mg tablet zydot how do i get generic cialis ship into canada can you get female viagra maximum dose amoxil how much does a month supply of cialis 5mg cost clomid increase to 100 mg 60 mg prednisolone asthma boots private prescriptions for viagra viagra online order safe cipro hereisthebestin without prescription tadalafil made in india is it good or bad doxycycline hyclate 100 mg sunlight vibramycin 100 mg indications of pregnancy daily cialis buy nolvadex online apotheke 14 dns genericos do viagra ciprofloxacin hcl 500 mg tab and fatigue where do i get viagra uk vibramycin 100 mg dispersible tablets meaning generic cialis berlin name of socialist countries in world where to buy accutane in singapore precio de sildenafil generico norwood 6 propecia generic buy cialis pills ukiah misoprostol cytotec como se usa socialist vision on market prices erofast sildenafil 50 mg onde comprar oleo donde comprar priligy en venezuela if 10 mg cialis did not work nolvadex hereisthebestin overnight epival sprinkle generico de cialis it support specialist jobs in nh cialis sales information where to find viagra pills in columbus campus drive cheap viagra sale in england viagra pay using paypal cuantas pastillas usar de cytotec propecia im internet bestellen how long to get prednisone out of system is ordering accutane online safe india buy viagra finasteride from india reviews prednisone psoriatic arthritis doxycycline in asthma zoloft 25 mg for ocd best cum cialis paracetamolo 1000 prezzo generico do viagra liquid viagra ingredients buy lasix 40 mg diuretics uk beanshell generics for viagra brand name depakote er vs generic viagra can you take l tryptophan with zoloft generic where to buy diflucan pills esomeprazole nombre generico de amoxil para que sirve el metformina 850 mg cialis viagra discount causas de cytotec wieviel mg viagra braucht man priligy generico opinioni isole how old can you be to use viagra ventas de cialis en canada toxic dose of doxycycline costo cytotec ecuador earthquake is sildenafil generic available in u prices cialis costco micro framework generics for viagra viagra online answers half dose of propecia can you dissolve doxycycline in water cialis high price doxycycline capsules 100mg for acne famous indian viagra 20 mg prednisone used how long should i take cialis before viagra discount uk best discount pill viagra viagra viagradrugs net can you take clomid whilst breastfeeding donde comprar cytotec panama prednisone liquid dosage chart clomid steroids price propranolol paranoia mg rk2928 generic cialis generic finasteride vs propecia doxycycline safety in breastfeeding viagra in egitto dapoxetine trial pack diflucan fluconazole cheap cipro for pneumonia mechanism of action of metformin in obesity definition viagra online shipping ulcedine 20 mg cialis cialis generico pago contrareembolso viagra 1 tablet price in pakistan se toma cialis 5 mg clomid canada overnight shipping is 150 mg of viagra safe how to buy viagra over the counter in delhi considered long term prednisone usage bula do cialis 20mg can you donate blood if you take accutane cialis gran canaria kaufen roxysatelier comcheap viagra generic ampicillin name avoid metformin in heart failure zelix 150 mg zoloft round generic cialis blue berry viagra prices quanto tempo posso usar o clomid where can i buy viagra over the counter in nsw does doxycycline make you burn in the sun can you take cialis and warfarin ciprofloxacin 500 mg capsulas price of viagra in tesco prednisolone 50 mg vielen how much is for 50 mg viagra at walgreens cialis canada for sale where can viagra be purchased or a similar order brand viagra online order viagra online no perscrition is viagra safe yahoo propecia cause gynecomastia costo de cytotec en ecuador cuales can i take supplements while on accutane buying cialis at a pharmacy. united states federal government socialist generic for doxycycline monohydrate viagra over the counter portugal prednisone safe baby buy lasix rx com amoxil 500 mg philippine peso cost carbo activatus 125 mg zoloft nombres de viagra generico exjade disp tablet 500 mg metformin cheapest place to buy cialis uk cialis canada illegal buy en iyi viagra hangisi diademas accutane generic does blue cross in virginia cover viagra lipitor 10 mg bijsluiter cialis does viagra cause a stuffy nose can you use lasix to pass a drug test clomid ie online ireland will amoxil treat a bladder infection best canadian online pharmacy for cialis nombre generico y comercial lasix metoprolol retard 50 mg bijsluiter nolvadex generic sildenafil dergboadre what endocrinologists in london use clomid for men zyprexa 10 mg beipackzettel ciprofloxacin can i buy clomid in the uk without prescription comprare priligy originale online procytox 50 mg viagra where to get cialis local stockist of generic viagra panatus forte 50 mg zoloft where to buy generic cialis online selling viagra in brazil over the counter generic viagra how to buy manfaat obat sdf sildenafil 50 mg guantes de vinilo donde comprar viagra is zithromax safe during pregnancy can buy cytotec cialis and viagra mix cheap viagra furthermore wellbutrin ordering online zoloft 50 mg third trimester buy cialis 5mg with paypal doxycycline online yahoo cialis philippines price doxycycline dosage for tooth abscess safe to stop zoloft allowed viagra substitute in qatar periodo despues usar cytotec what is the recommended dosage of clomid prednisolone liquid inactive ingredients in allegra viagra united states source finasteride doc 5 mg propranolol sa 60 mg for anxiety que problemas causa el sildenafil when to use viagra tablets propecia genital shrinkage how many ml of zithromax can be given to a 5 year old generic drugs and viagra legit place to buy cialis cipla finasteride 1 mg viagra maximum safe dosage and how often does generic female viagra work buying cialis online ca dapoxetine india rates usn master training specialist recommendation generic diflucan price metformin 500 mg e tab sunpass how many months should you take clomid cialis online offer prilosec and zoloft safe cialis brand 20mg viagra online is the solution dapoxetine ukmix priligy per nachnahme bestellen metformin in kidney transplant remedio valeriana 50 mg zoloft viagra in anus cialis prices rising 3000 mg sildenafil how much is cialis cost viagra as a recreational drug cialis 30 mg dose minioxidil and finasteride cost how often can one take viagra gel super j33 2 womens reviews on cialis what is cost of metformin buy generic cialis in uk priligy safe buy male and female cialis name of doxycycline in japan what the differ between viagra 50 mg and 100 mg order cytotec online for under 1.00 per pill buying cialis 80 mg powder how to prepare 100 mgml ampicillin and pregnancy how we can use viagra in hindi is viagra from mexico safe glucophage 1000 mg kullanim sekli chlamydia treatment antibiotics doxycycline buy sildenafil dapoxetine uk costco finasteride 1mg generic price nsorderedset generic viagra authentic cialis price no dairy with cipro para que sirve ciprofloxacino tabletas de 250 mg how much potassium for lasix 20 mg viagra samples in canada is it safe to give a dog viagra precio de priligy 30 mg cialis manufactured in china best online source for arimidex and nolvadex comprar cialis line intensol generic cialis efeitos viagra generico para que se usa tadalafil still losing hair with propecia cost can clomid cause fibroids meilleurs prix cialis 20mg is there an over the counter cialis for women can you take doxycycline with fish oil undigested pills in stool metformin for pcos is viagra 150 mg bogus how long will it take to ovulate after clomid cipro dose in humans is zithromax available in the uk zoloft side effect in elderly cialis no prescription no generic can import cialis into australia vendita cialis in francia thuoc lauritz 10 mg prednisone generic ciprofloxacin eye drops generic prednisone canine petco testogel kaufen rezeptfrei viagra cialis 5 mg comprimidos excedrin sinus headache generic viagra we can i buy viagra without a prescription raccomandata disdetta contratto generic a viagra clomid at walmart cost street prices for cialis what does sildenafil citrate tablets work in the body cipro over the counter walgreens generico propecia hair viagra patent expiration uk map ciprofloxacin hexal 500 mg alkoholizm cheap cialis 2 day express how long do you take ampicillin socialism in american government zoloft at 150 mgs price on generic cialis canadian no prescription prednisone zovirax creme bestandteile clomid causa dor buying deal pill viagra viagradrugs net ganaric cialis 5 mg price buy cheap clomid pills length of doxycycline treatment can am spiders for sale in uk zithromax denver viagra cost per pill viagra lloyds chemist whalley doxycycline hyclate cause yeast infection metformin axcount 1000 mg beipackzettel doxycycline for chlamydia dose viagra compra online cost of purchasing genuine viagra Kiwipolitico » Blog Archive » Deconstructing Democracy: Introduction.

Deconstructing Democracy: Introduction.

datePosted on 19:38, May 26th, 2009 by Pablo

Anita’s post below on raising democratic children was meaningful to me because I was primarily raised in authoritarian societies, was involved in anti-authoritarian activities in my youth and first got to vote when I arrived in the US to attend university (under Nixon!). Later as a single parent I worked hard to raise my kids in what I liked to call a “triangular” social democratic family (Dad and two kids with a reasonably equitable sharing of household rights and responsibilities given our respective life positions). Although we do not agree on many issues, I can confidently say that they are both politically engaged.

I spent a large part of the Reagan years living on and off in Latin America studying processes of authoritarian demise and democratic (re)constitution, spent the early 1990s working in and out of the US government, then decided to emigrate to NZ once the kids were old enough to fend for themselves. In NZ I initially found one of the two freest places I have lived in (along with Uruguay), but then unhappily watched the corrosion of democratic values in both political and civil society over the next decade. I am now again involuntarily living under yet another authoritarian regime (not quite as murderous as the ones of my youth), and having written previously about the dilemmas of democratic consolidation in post-authoritarian societies, I have time to reflect from afar on what the term means to me, with specific reference to NZ.  Once I finish the current book project I am working on, I intend to write a book about the subject of democracy in transitional societies, and to that purpose have begun to deconstruct my thought on what democracy involves.

Over the next few blog posts I will sketch out my preliminary thoughts on the issue (these are too long for one post). The reason I do so is not so much as a self-indulgent attempt to see what the thoughts look like on paper, but because I think that sometimes people who have lived their entire lives in a democratic society lose sight of what that really means and what it involves. Perhaps it takes someone who has experience with both dictatorial and democratic systems to cast fresh light on the latter. That is my purpose here.

To begin with, we must separate “democracy” into its procedural and substantive dimensions. Procedural democracy refers to the means (procedures) by which political power is acquired and maintained. Substantive democracy refers to the three dimensions on which democratic societies are reproduced: institutional, societal and economic. I explain each in turn.

Procedural democracy is characterised by free and open competitive elections between self-constituted political actors awarded equal legal status and free from interference from the state, with an unencumbered right to vote shared by the entire adult population of citizens (and in the case of NZ, permanent residents, of which I am one).  This much is the obvious procedural minimum–there is more with regard to how the selection of incumbents of political decision-making positions is accomplished. But the key points are the freedom of expression, preference and competition embedded in the concept of procedural democracy; and the fact that elections, in and of themselves, have no intrinsic worth. By themselves elections are just a procedure, or as a Chilean observer once commented, a type of “secular communion” held at regular intervals by the electorate to consecrate their commitment to the political form as well as to select those who shall temporarily rule.

That is where substantive democracy comes in. Elections without institutional, societal and economic underpinnings are all procedure and no substance. Ferdinand Marcos held (and won) regular elections, as did the PRI regime in Mexico and Brazilian military regime of 1964-1985. The country where I am currently living has regular elections as well, but the outcome is pre-determined: the ruling party always wins. Thus, what matters most for the constitution and consolidation of democracy is not holding elections, but the substantive reproduction of democracy in its institutional, societal and economic dimensions.

Institutional democracy refers to the organization of the state apparatus and collective actors, the rules that bind them, and the forms of interaction they engage. The guiding principle of institutional democracy is transparency, equality and accountability. Institutions, both public and private, big and small, operate in away that minimizes preferential bias or ascriptive intrusions in their governance and outputs. The notions of polyarchy and pluralism apply here. Good representation of the concept is the notion that “justice is blind” or that collective agents and public officials are responsible (effectively answerable) to their principals. Needless to say, even in an advanced liberal democracy like NZ, the reality is somewhat less than the ideal.

That may be due to difficulties at the societal level. Societal democracy refers to the inculcation of notions of consent, concession, compromise, collective interest, equality, solidarity, individual rights, mutual consideration, egalitarianism and legitimate exchange. This promotes general belief in tolerance, respect for difference, non-hierarchical outlooks and negotiated solutions in the pursuit of mutual second-best collective outcomes (as opposed to self-interested first choice maximization of opportunities). It also promotes a (relatively) high degree of public participation in politically-oriented activity (including participation in the type of demonstrations seen in Auckland the past few days). This is what distinguishes democratic from authoritarian societies. Yet here too the ideal is not matched by reality even in the most mature of democracies–but it remains an aspirational objective.

Part of the reason societal democracy is less than perfect is due to failures to achieve economic democracy. At an economic level substantive democracy involves a general agreement within society that favours political guarantees for maintaining a minimum standard of living and just compensation for productive labour. It includes acceptance of minimum health and welfare standards for those who are structurally unemployable (i.e., through no fault of their own). The means of achieving economic democracy are much debated, but the fact of its necessity is not.

There is a fair bit of argument about what dimension should come first. Does procedural-institutional democracy precede societal and economic democracy (as liberal theorists claim), or, as Marxists argue, is the process the reverse? Can it be imposed by external actors, and if so, on which dimensions? (I would argue that in most cases it cannot). The degree to which a society has moved towards achieving procedural and substantive democracy helps distinguish between liberal, illiberal, exclusionary, delegative and radical democratic systems. As an example, let us imagine that we can “score” democratic “value” points based on a continuum from least to most (please note that this is my subjective rating for heuristic purposes and does not use Freedom House or Transparency International scores). Generally speaking, arrayed on a scale of 1-10 (1=undemocratic; 10=democratic utopia), countries are considered democratic if they score above 5 on all dimensions (a minimum of 20 points). Moreover, that score is not static or immutable–it varies over time depending on socio-economic, demographic and political conditions. Thus, when I arrived in NZ in 1997 I scored the country as a 8 on a procedural level, 8 on an institutional level, 9 on a societal level and a 7 on an economic level. By 2007 my scores for NZ were 7.5, 7, 8 and 8 ( a net decline of 1.5 democratic “value” points). In contrast, I had the US scored in 1997 as 6, 6, 8 and 7, moving to 5., 5.5, 7.5 and 6 under the reign of George W. Bush. As for the country I am currently living in, the scores are 1.5, 5, 6.5 and 1.

The point is not to argue for the precision of these scores. The point is that democracy is a living, breathing entity, one that reproduces dialectically across the above-mentioned dimensions, and one that is susceptible to decline if it does not reproduce a minimum threshold of democratic “value” across them. In subsequent posts I shall elaborate on the five factors that need to be reconciled for this to occur. These are consent, uncertainty, contingency, entitlements and self-restraint. In the next post I shall address the issue of consent as the foundation of hegemonic rule, and of  democracies specifically. 

For the moment suffice it to say that I endorse Anita’s insightful remarks about the early political socialisation of children, as that constitutes a precondition for the achievement of societal and institutional democracy.

PS: Please feel free to weigh in. All reasoned views welcome–after all, I have a book project in mind!

6 Responses to “Deconstructing Democracy: Introduction.”

  1. Matt on May 27th, 2009 at 06:42

    I wish you all the best in your project, Pablo. Democratic societies are under constant pressure from authoritarian influences. It must be acknowledged that the reverse is also true. Please do your best to make the book accessible to as wide an audience as possible.

  2. Pablo on May 27th, 2009 at 15:51

    Thanks Matt. I have to get through the security book first (the dislocations of the past couple of years has slowed progress on that front). But I am already thinking of the next project, hence this series of posts. My major concern with regard to NZ is the decline in civility of political discourse, growing lack of transparency in government and increased institutional manipulation by elites for self-serving or partisan purposes (on the latter you might check out Cactus Kate’s dissection of the NZX in some recent posts on her blog, which is just one example of the larger negative trend).

  3. marty mars on May 28th, 2009 at 09:08

    Kia ora Pablo,
    I’m looking forward to the book too.
    I’m interested in your view about what happens to a democracy when external macro events interact with it. Obviously there are external factors which can cause a democracy to slip away from the ideal and move towards the autocratic state. I suppose i’m thinking of wars as an example, but more specifically colonisation.

    Can you have a democracy when the majority population may score above the line for the catagories you mentioned, namely procedual, institutional, societal and economic. But a subset of that population may score below the line, from their perspective. A extreme example may be slavery. The slaves don’t live or participate in a democratic society yet the larger society could be seen as having a number of democratic features, and perhaps could score above the democracy line.

    Colonisation or more specifically de-colonisation is surely on the spectrum with slavery at one end and freedom at the other. Is there a correlation between these degrees of freedom and the amount of democracy? If a person is less free does that mean they have less democracy?

    If one of the tenents of democracy is personal freedom, does an indigenous, disadvantaged, colonised people actually live in a democracy? For them there is less freedom than for the majority. I suppose when the minority is 1% or 2% it is perhaps not such a major consideration but what if the minority is 30% of the population?

    So I suppose my questions (longwinded i know) are, Can a country be called democratic when there is a subset of indigenous, disadvantaged people living within that population who do not experience the same manifestation of democracy as the majority?
    And further, if that country cannot truely be called a democracy – what is the correct term for the political structure?
    Is colonisation a macro external event that affects democracy, like war, or is colonisation incorporated within the internal workings of democracy, as articulated by the various scoring you have mentioned. In other words if a country is colonised do we just score them lower in certain catagories because the overall theme of democracy is intact?

    Finally it all boils down to this… If a country cannot be actually called a true democracy while certain indigenous citizens are structurally disadvantaged… then is NZ a democracy? is the US a democracy? Is australia a democracy? and is canada a democracy? These 4 countries are all colonised and the indigenous peoples of those countries are disadvantaged. Also interesting to note they are the 4 countries that did not ratify the UN declaration on indigenous rights.
    I am born and breed in this country, I have never lived in an autocratic society, perhaps i haven’t ever lived in a democratic society either.
    Appreciate your thoughts.
    All the best.

    How much does the observer distort the observation by the very act of observing? For example an indigenous person placed into a society that has undergone colonisation may look at the minority who have less democracy than the majority and score/say that this society is not very democratic. The same person may instead identify with the majority and say there is a high degree of democratisation. I’m interested in how those views are reconcilled.

  4. […] but one of the `institutions of societal democracy’ referred to in Pablo’s recent post on the topic; a civic duty, to use Thoreau’s formulation, rather than an act of social […]

  5. Pablo on May 28th, 2009 at 18:03

    Thanks Marty for the insightful comment. What you are referring to appears to me to be variants of exclusionary or limited democracy. These are countries in which selected minorities are offered formal political rights but are denied structural opportunities equal to those of the majority (limited); or those in which the political rights of selected minorities are restricted (exclusionary). Since “democracy” is a form of majority rule, it always is biased in favour of the many rather than the few regardless of the origins of both. The true measure of democracy is not in the treatment of the majority, but in the treatment of minorities. In that measure it can be argued that conditions of post-colonialism, the most recent of which were created by capitalist imperialism, exacerbate rather than ameliorate the disadvantages of the minority, which means that capitalist democracies are limited by definition.

    As for issues of observations. Subjective assessments of objective phenomena vary according to the vantage point of the observer. But, as I noted in the post about conceptual stretching, that does not obviate the original objective condition. What makes for subjective difference is the objective insertion of the observer in the social milieu. It is recognition of this fact that gives credence to the more informed of post-modern analyses.

  6. […] help posting a section of Ani DiFranco’s Hello Birmingham. With an echo of Pablo’s recent posts, she is talking, at least in part, of the powerlessness of electors to make the changes that […]

Leave a Reply

Name: (required)
Email: (required) (will not be published)
Website:
Comment: