Talk:Democracy

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Nothing in the definition of democracy includes "liberal". Lets not get flustered just because democracy and democrat share the same linguistic root. Please feel free to expand the article if you would like to define "liberal democracy".PKBear 00:55, 23 March 2007 (EDT)

Liberal democracy has nothing to do with the Democrats or left-wing politics. I think you're confusing the many meanings of the word 'liberal'. Here, it means the protection of civil liberties, the rights of minorities, freedom of speech etc. I've tried to clear that up in the article. --Rafa 09:04, 25 March 2007 (EDT)

The update I made was entirely consistent with other conservapedia pages, and I cited my references (indeed, I suprisingly had to add the reference tag to the article...). Why was the change reverted?

Contents

Democratic Republic

I changed the term "representative democracy" to "democratic republic", which means exactly the same thing. I did this because the Founding Fathers did not once use the word "democracy" in the Declaration of Independence or the Constitution and it better reflects the ideals that the Founders had in mind when the nation was born.--Porthos 14:37, 13 July 2007 (EDT)


Heretical but more probable

Though it's popular to proclaim that the U.S.A. is a "democracy" that is untrue. The U.S. Constitution guarantees a "republican form" to the States. The Federal government, itself, is organized as a constitutional democracy, but the U.S.A. is technically not a democracy. The key difference is founded in the distinction between sovereign powers and how they're exercised.

"The United States shall guarantee to every State in this Union a Republican Form of Government, and shall protect each of them against Invasion; ...." [United States Constitution, Article 4, Section 4]

REPUBLICAN GOVERNMENT. One in which the powers of sovereignty are vested in the people and are exercised by the people, either directly, or through representatives chosen by the people, to whom those powers are specially delegated. In re Duncan, 139 U.S. 449, 11 S.Ct. 573, 35 L.Ed. 219; Minor v. Happersett, 88 U.S. (21 Wall.) 162, 22 L.Ed. 627. - - - Black's Law Dictionary, 4th ed.

This is entirely different from the definition for a democracy:

"DEMOCRACY - That form of government in which the sovereign power resides in and is exercised by the whole body of free citizens directly or indirectly through a system of representation, as distinguished from monarchy, aristocracy, or oligarchy." - - - Black's Law Dictionary, Sixth Edition, P. 432

The distinction is found in the identity of the sovereign power and the means of its exercise.

Republican form : People are sovereign, and directly exercise sovereignty.

Democratic form : Whole body of free citizens (collectively) exercise sovereignty, indirectly.

As you can see, the court cites AND the definition of the republican form are congruent. The U.S. governments, Federal and State, admit that the PEOPLE are sovereign.


Government is not Sovereignty. Government is the machinery or expedient for expressing the will of the sovereign power. City of Bisbee v. Cochise County, 78 P. 2d 982, 986, 52 Ariz. 1

WHO are sovereign?

"People are supreme, not the state."

Waring v. the Mayor of Savannah, 60 GA at 93.

"The people of the state, as the successors of its former sovereign, are entitled to all the rights which formerly belonged to the king by his own prerogative."

Lansing v. Smith, (1829) 4 Wendell 9, (NY)


"At the Revolution, the sovereignty devolved on the people and they are truly the sovereigns of the country."

Chisholm v. Georgia, 2 Dall. 440, 463

"It will be admitted on all hands that with the exception of the powers granted to the states and the federal government, through the Constitutions, the people of the several states are unconditionally sovereign within their respective states."

Ohio L. Ins. & T. Co. v. Debolt 16 How. 416, 14 L.Ed. 997

In Europe, the executive is almost synonymous with the sovereign power of a State; and generally includes legislative and judicial authority. When, therefore, writers speak of the sovereign, it is not necessarily in exclusion of the judiciary; and it will often be found that when the executive affords a remedy for any wrong, it is nothing more than by an exercise of its judicial authority. Such is the condition of power in that quarter of the world, where it is too commonly acquired by force or fraud, or both, and seldom by compact. In America, however, the case is widely different. Our government is founded upon compact. Sovereignty was, and is, in the people.

Glass vs The Sloop Betsey, 3 Dall 6 (1794)

"...While sovereign powers are delegated to ... the government, sovereignty itself remains with the people..."

Yick Wo vs Hopkins, 118 U.S. 356,370

WHO are not sovereign?

"CITIZEN - ... Citizens are members of a political community who, in their associative capacity, have established or submitted themselves to the dominion of government for the promotion of the general welfare and the protection of their individual as well as collective rights. " - - - Black's Law Dictionary, Sixth Ed. p.244

"SUBJECT - One that owes allegiance to a sovereign and is governed by his laws. ...Men in free governments are subjects as well as citizens; as citizens they enjoy rights and franchises; as subjects they are bound to obey the laws. The term is little used, in this sense, in countries enjoying a republican form of government ." - - - Black's Law Dictionary, Sixth Edition, p. 1425

"... the term `citizen,' in the United States, is analogous to the term "subject" in the common law; the change of phrase has resulted from the change in government." - State v. Manuel, 122 N.C. 122


In essence, though most Americans presume that they're "U.S. citizens" at birth (and obligated to perform), the fact is that freeborn American nationals are people unfettered by compulsory duties. However, they may choose to exercise political liberty (vote and hold office) and drop in legal status, moving from the republican form to the democratic form of government.--Jetgraphics 12:41, 14 November 2007 (EST)


Discussion of the merits

"Democracy may have its problems; an uneducated populace, for example, is the bane of any democracy, since unless people know what they need, they can not properly elect people to serve these needs."

Actually, there is another fundamental flaw - the threat to individual life, liberty and property. Any time a majority can override the minority, or the one, it can result in tyranny.

Other problems emerge from a capricious electorate, which caused Winston Churchill to remark that, "Democracy is the worst form of government... except for all the other forms that have been tried," a quote which eloquently notes that, despite its problems, democracy almost universally provides for peace and prosperity.

Generally, most Americans are ignorant of the republican form of government, as defined in law. Therefore, they often are misled to argue about forms of democracy which are foreign to the original framework. However, the key feature of the republican form is the sovereignty of the people, and their immunity from depredation by any democratic majority, when it comes to life, liberty and private property. Of course, when the people exercise political liberty, register to vote, and hold public office, they become citizens, subject to the civic duties and obligations inherent with their new status at law.

--Jetgraphics 18:31, 8 December 2007 (EST)

Majority rule

Deleted text:

Majoritarian systems are, however, problematic in that, in theory, they permit a majority to debase the welfare of a minority. In addition, inequalities in wealth can distort the principles of political equality, giving considerable power to the wealthy to control economic policy outside of electoral politics. This may curtail the practical power of groups to effect radical change and to enact measures which might threaten the wealth and power of these elites. Socialists argue that a high degree of socio-economic equality is required for real political equality, but also contend that solidarity and fraternity may be sufficient to overcome the distorting effects of unequal wealth and enact pro-labor policies.

I actually think this makes sense. It also presents Socialist properly, i.e., as an attributed viewpoint. --Ed Poor Talk 13:46, 4 January 2008 (EST)

Cut from article:
In addition, inequalities in wealth can distort the principles of political equality, giving considerable power to the wealthy to control economic policy outside of electoral politics. This may curtail the practical power of groups to effect radical change and to enact measures which might threaten the wealth and power of these elites.
Whose idea is this? --Ed Poor Talk 15:35, 4 January 2008 (EST)
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