For anyone reading this in the future, the US is in the midst of a highly contested election. I don’t have the space to go over all the details, but the short version is that Donald Trump appears to be the victim of election fraud, as hundreds of thousands of mail-in ballots, all for his opponent Joe Biden, were “discovered” overnight, only in key battleground states and districts controlled by the Democrat party.
This, however, provides a great time to talk about systems, processes, and the appeal to processes as a stand-in for the good.
“Democracy” is something the American left frequently appeal to, along with the global far-left (which is why so many communist states use the word “democratic” in their new-speak self-titling), as if democracy is something that is good itself.
Processes in general are not things which are “good” in and of themselves, but are conditionally good – that is, they are good because they produce the desired results. You judge your exercise routine by how well it improves your fitness and appearance; you wouldn’t pretend that lifting weights is something you should do simply because it is obviously good.
And yet, “democracy” is treated as though it is unquestionably good. In reality, the appeal to the process is just an appeal to selfishness: You should have the power! Also reality: democracies are illusory.
We don’t need to get into the semantics of how we live in a republic, not a democracy. For now, the point is that the “democracy” buzzword refers to a basic system where everyone can vote and every vote counts the same.
Given our election results, we can infer a few things:
- We do not, in practical terms, have a functioning democracy
- If we did have a functional democracy, the results are not good
We do not have a function democracy (or republic) because we lack the ability to accurately count votes. We don’t have a functional democracy because the voting system is subject to control and manipulation to the benefit of one party, er go it is incapable of representing the will of the people.
If you were to somehow table these, or if we are to pretend that Joe Biden did in fact get hundreds of thousands of mail-in voters to vote for him, and got more votes than his uber-popular predocessor Barak Obama, then the results of the election undermine any conditional good of the election. Joe Biden clearly suffers from alzheimer’s and has a long history of curruption, of which the scandals involving trading his power for the benefit of his son are likely just the tip of the iceberg.
In other words, the voters elected someone who is incapable of holding office both morally and mentally.
The US is not the only accusor of democracy’s failings – just take a look at Venezuela, an oil-rich country that is on the brink of starvation due to the “election” of socialists. Clearly, looking at the outcome of their country, the system must be replaced with something that functions better.
So the appeal to democracy is unsound if you are at all concerned with outcomes.
It is also, however, deeply insincere. Republicans are well known for playing by the rules, and the anger of Trump supporters right now boils down to this assymetry: We won, but you cheated.
Of course, they cheated. They have been cheating for a long, long time, and I don’t just mean having dead people vote from the grave. The American Left has been quite happy to end-run around democracy whenever possible to achieve aims that are in opposition to the will of the majority. Gay marriage was never legalized in California in the traditional sense. Before the legislature could even decide that, California voters passed through direct democracy a constitutional ammendment defining marriage as being between one man and one woman, thus making all same-sex relationships automatically fall outside of this boundary.
The law was struck down as unconstitutional by the unelected court, and the state government refused to defend its law, because the politicians (again) don’t respect democracy, and the SCOTUS refused to hear the case because the petitioners (who had spearheaded the ballot initiative) didn’t have standing to sue.
They did the same thing with Abortion, and untold millions have been murdered as a result.
If, somehow, a law is still kept on the books, they will refuse to enforce it. If they cannot get a law on the books, they will enforce it extra-legally. People “guilty” of improper political speech will get fired from their jobs or banned from the platforms they rely upon to make money. It goes on an on.
What the left actually cares about is winning. There is no process that matters, and no rules to a contest that they will respect. The right needs to be realistic about this and stop letting them control the narrative, the courts, and the voting box. At least Trump is willing to fight, not just say that there was nothing to do about a ref that was paid-off, take the loss and walk out of the stadium to boos. As a result there might, just might, be a chance of making the process actually function.
We do not live in a democracy, not just as a matter of semantic truth, but as a matter of practical reality. Stop the theater of pretending we do.