Accepting, for the moment, your statement we still have the problem of figuring out who the idiots are. To often it comes down to people who don’t think, look, or act like who is the dominate ruling class/culture and as things tend to change and shift that can end up being anyone. (I’m not saying you’d do this, but it just often happens that way.) I’d let idiots have the vote for fear that if I restrict it I’ll one day be labeled the idiot.
The problem will always be deciding who gets to decide who the idiots are.
And who gets to decide who counts as an ‘idiot’? I’m seriously asking. 'Cause it seems to me that the ability to disenfranchise an entire group or class of people, that’s a pretty potent political power. The kind of thing a dictator would love to have. What fair and just way can you possibly imagine to filter the voting public that won’t, in the end, boil down to some person or committee saying “this guy is an idiot because he doesn’t vote the way we want him to”?
I might go so far as to argue that the entire point democracy is to prevent group A from telling group B “you don’t get to exercise political power because you don’t deserve it.”
EDIT: curse my slow typing fingers!
Right, but it should be obvious that not everyone is equal. Some people are smarter, some people are better educated, some people are stronger, some people are wiser, some people are better leaders.
Are you pulling my leg?
I don’t think so.
Any one person can entertain thoughts like that. the question is whether a mass of people smears itself into an enlightened choice. Collectively are we wise? The last 2 elections makes you wonder .
Those two statements are not related. Some people are better at certain things than other people, but we are all people, and we all deserve a voice.
I think that most people will agree that everyone is not equal when it comes to abilities, but the way the word is usually used is this situation pertains to people’s rights and worth as a person.
How do you feel about that kind of equality?
Easy answer: let our senators decide (and/or representatives). We elect the senators, and every four years they pick a president. This makes politics local again, and keeps the federal government, you know, federal. Every single thing that both candidates are campaigning on (not having national security implications) are things we should be blaming our governors for.
No, I don’t mean a Canada-style parliamentary system where whole new governments are formed and fired.
Another populist B.S. election like this one, and we’ll end up with our own Chavez. Who knows, we might swear-in our own Chavez on January 20th.
I don’t know how you’d prove that. You’d probably have to start by defining “rights” and “worth”.
If we voted directly for policies, rather than for people, we’d have a different kind of system. But I feel even less qualified to make decisions about policies than about people.
That’s why we vote for whom we trust the most to actually make the decisions (after, it is hoped, much study, cogitation, and consultation with experts that we ourselves don’t have the time or access for).
People, I’m not saying that the system of government needs changing. I’m saying that maybe not everyone should vote for every office. I’m saying that in some circumstance, when you aren’t sure what the office is for, or who the best person is, you should decide it’s in the best interest of all if you forgo your vote. It’s wrong to make people feel guilty, when they don’t vote based on ignorance. An ignorant person, who decides to not vote, is performing the best public service there ever can be. Isn’t it possible that the people who need encouragement to vote, are likely to be uninformed anyway. I know that with me, the more I learn, the more I want to participate. I’m suggesting that ignorant people should be encouraged to not vote, or become educated before voting, or to vote only for certain offices. This ‘you must vote, no matter what’ mentality is the criminal aspect, which needs to be changed. Democracy doesn’t always get better with participation. Either ignorant voters need to be limited, or informed voters need to be incorporated.