[EM] Conceiving a Democratic Electoral Process

Kristofer Munsterhjelm km_elmet at lavabit.com
Mon Jul 9 04:31:08 PDT 2012

On 07/09/2012 09:45 AM, ⸘Ŭalabio‽ wrote:
> 2012-07-08T17:04:50Z, “Fred Gohlke”<Fredgohlke at Verizon.Net>:
>> Whether or not 'rule by the best' can work depends in large part on
>> how well the electoral method integrates the reality that the
>> common good is dynamic.
> All of this time, I thought that you meant political dynasties like
> the Bushes.  I know that English is not your first language, so I do
> not blame you for the mistake, but you use the wrong word:
> Aristocracy means ruling families in English.
> Meritocracy is the best rising to rule, even if they are born in
> obscure poverty, such as being born in a logcabin on the edge of the
> frontier in poverty to illiterate parents like Lincoln was.
> If you mean rule by the best, regardless of the circumstances of
> their birth, you mean meritocracy.

When I used the word "aristocracy" in my own post, I referred to 
Aristotle, who used it in the sense of "rule by the best". There, 
aristocracy is a compound word of aristoi and kratia, the first of which 
is derived from aristos ("the best"), and the second which is derived 
from kratos ("rule", also possibly "might").

Furthermore, dictionary.com's definition of the English word 
"aristocracy" includes:

3. government by those considered to be the best or most able people in 
the state.
4. a governing body composed of those considered to be the best or most 
able people in the state.

So I don't think Fred was wrong.

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