Friday, August 26, 2016

America is a republic, not a democracy

The founding fathers of the United States, the people who created and signed our founding documents -- the U.S. Constitution and the Declaration of Independence -- did not like democracies because they believed they lead to chaos. They didn't want the new nation to become chaotic over time, so they created a republic and not a democracy. 

The founding fathers did their homework, and knew democracies did not work.  W. Cleon Skousen, discussed this in his book "The 5000 Year Leap: Principles of Freedom 101," discussed this fact. He said: 
"There are many reasons why the Founders wanted a republican form of government rather than a democracy. Theoretically, a democracy requires the full participation of the masses of the people in the legislature or decision making processes of government. This has never worked because the people become so occupied with their daily tasks that they will not properly study the issues, nor will they take the time to participate in extensive hearings before the vote is taken. The Greeks tried to use democratic mass-participation in the government of the city-states, and each time it ended in tyranny."
He said that while a democracy becomes "increasingly unwieldy and inefficient as the population grows," a republic "governs through elected representatives and can be expanded indefinitely."

So, a democracy demands the participation of all the people. A republic, according to founding father James Madison, "derives its power directly or indirectly from the great body of the people, and is administered by persons holding their offices during pleasure for a limited period, or during good behavior."

Madison continued:  It is essential to such a government that it be derived from the great body of the society, not from an inconsiderable proportion or a favored class of it; otherwise a handful of tyrannical nobles, exercising their oppressions by a delegation of their powers, might aspire to the rank of republicans and claim for their government the honorable title of republic."

Around the turn of the 19th century, progressives took the term republic hostage and started referring to their programs as democratic. They did this in order to make their agenda appear to be driven by the masses, as opposed to being created by a few people in an office. They did this to make their agenda appear more appealing to Americans. They did this to make their Marxist agenda appear democratic and American.

This was necessary, because Marxism, or fascism, or whatever you want to call it, had spread at the turn of the 19th century and had gained steam in Europe and the United States. It grew fast in many European nations, although was slow to grow in the U.S. due to the Constitution.The horrors of socialism were well known by Americans, and they did not want that here.

This was known by the progressives of the era, so they had to come up with a major public relations campaign to make their agenda appear less Marxist and more democratic. So, you see, they decided that what better strategy than simply to abscond the term democracy. Their writers were writing the history books and textbooks kids were reading in schools. So they simply decided to replace republic with democracy. 

A perfect example of this occurred in 1921 when Marxism fell out of favor in the U.S. due to what was happening in Europe. So anyone who wanted to implement progressive programs had to find a friendly way of referring to it. So this is exactly what happened.  Socialists in the U.S. started referring themselves as "The League for Industrial Democracy."  You see, this had a much more appealing taste than if they were true to their agenda and simply said "The League for Industrial Socialism." 

The long term consequence is that teachers and journalists started referring to the United States as a democracy. Younger generations of Americans grew up hearing democracy instead of republic. 

During WWI, Woodrow Wilson, a progressive, added to the confusion when he hailed, "Make the world safe for Democracy." 

I frequently hear people of various political affiliations referring to the U.S. as a democracy. I even did this once, and was corrected by a democrat. Recently I heard a democrat refer to the U.S. as a democracy, and I had to correct her. 

I think the only way to fix this problem is for teachers and journalists to start teaching about the founding intentions, and why the Constitution was written as it was. It was created in such a way so that, even after the founding fathers passed away, the country would continue to run strong. They believed a democracy would lead to chaos, and so they established a republic.