[EM] Alexander Praetorius, regarding Frome, U.K.

Gervase Lam gervase at madasafish.com
Thu Jul 16 18:18:05 PDT 2015


I've been loosely following this thread and had a few questions.  As one
thing that Fred mentions near the start of his reply below relates to
one of my questions, I thought I would ask:-

(1) Do you expect individuals like those who are both deaf and blind,
itinerant gypsies, prisoners, those with dementia or other mental
disability, or a family member who is caring 24 hours a day for a
relative with such illnesses, to set up as their own business so that
they are self employed, which would enable them to have their say?

(2) From what I can tell, a large proportion of China consists of small
personal businesses, a good example being sole market sellers.  Is this
a better start for a democracy than what several European countries
have, who are more dependent on big businesses?

(3) Every business in the UK needs an external accountant to audit the
business.  Each business must pay for such a compulsory "service".  Do
you expect each self employed individual, whose main aim is to have a
voice in society, to pay for such a "service"?


On Thu, 2015-07-16 at 14:40 -0400, Fred Gohlke wrote:
> Good Afternoon, Alexander
> We know our views differ.  These comments are a different way of looking 
> at some of the topics you raised.
> To the best of my knowledge, in the so-called 'democracies' that 
> presently exist, votes are cast by human individuals.  I know of no 
> instance where votes are cast by money.  We know that money can be used 
> to buy votes but that does not move us closer to democracy than we are 
> at present.  Quite the reverse.
> Using money to buy hula hoops is certainly one way of voting with money, 
> but it has drawbacks.  For one, it tends to lead to 'conspicuous 
> consumption' by those who exploit the system better than their peers. 
> For another, it is not available to those who need their resources to 
> feed their families; those who "work for cheap under horrible conditions".
> You say, "The FAKE BULLSHIT (you describe) has to disolve.", but you 
> don't explain its failings.  I've seen many such assertions, but never 
> one that provided an explanation of what is wrong with the system or why 
> it failed.  Without knowing and understanding why it failed, it is 
> impossible to improve upon it.
> Existing pseudo-democratic political systems fail because they treat the 
> people like children whose Mommy gives them a choice between Corn Flakes 
> or Wheaties for breakfast.  Political parties, acting like Mommies, tell 
> the people what political choices they can make.
> Over the past one hundred years, the explosion of mass communications 
> and the application of behavioral science have given party politics a 
> stranglehold on the people.  They have robbed the people of their right 
> to govern themselves.  Instead, as many have known for years and 
> researchers at Princeton and Northwestern are starting to learn, even 
> America has turned into an oligarchy.
> http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2014/apr/21/americas-oligarchy-not-democracy-or-republic-unive/#ixzz3ftXIhT7n
> The oligarchs who control the psuedo-democracies maintain their power by 
> the most basic rule of success:  Divide and Conquer.  In the United 
> States, they use two political parties to divide the people and control 
> the government.  Other countries claim to be 'more democratic' because 
> they introduce more parties.  They're not.
> Political parties are divisive by definition.  They do not seek to serve 
> the common interest; they seek to assert the interests of a select few. 
>   They do not improve democracy, they empower a relatively radical 
> portion of the electorate at the expense of the common interest.
> Any system that lets small groups of people decide who can be a 
> candidate for public office and raise immense amounts of money to peddle 
> their candidate to the public is flawed.  The only product the parties 
> have have to sell is the laws their candidates enact and that creates a 
> conflict of interest that has tragic consequences for the people.
> It need not be so.  There is no shortage of people among us with the wit 
> and wisdom to resolve adversarial issues in the public interest.  What 
> we lack is a means of identifying them and raising them to leadership 
> positions.
> It is unfortunate that the many bright and thoughtful people who post on 
> this site do not think it worthwhile to help the Frome Town Council find 
> a way for every member of the community to help decide which of their 
> peers are the most attuned to the needs of the community and have the 
> qualities required to advocate the common good.
> Fred Gohlke
> ----
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