Author Topic: End of the Monarchies  (Read 44636 times)

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Offline grandduchessella

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Re: End of the Monarchies
« Reply #45 on: January 07, 2008, 10:25:40 PM »
What can be done? Hope that the American public actually gets a fire under their butts--enough to stop just complaining and actually get out and vote. Every election since 2003 has resulted in more anti-Iraq war people being elected (save for the top spot) yet nothing gets done. Even our last election, that brought Democrats control of the House & Senate, and sent a clear message of change has resulted in nothing. Congress is held hostage by the various voting tricks that can be brought up to stall or kill a bill--and it's something they themselves used often when they were in the minority. It mostly revolves around now needing a veto-proof 2/3 majority to get them to even debate an issue rather than the simple majority needs for actual passage. It's a very sad state of affairs and Congress is about the only ones with a lower approval rating than the President at this point.

I've got a very politically aware 13-year-old who will be chomping at the bit to vote when she's old enough--and she's probably more ready than those who are already of age! I couldn't wait until I could cast a vote and I think it's disgraceful the pitiful turnout presidential elections get. Women and minorities need to really treasure it since it was long-fought for and only achieved in the 20th century. My grandmother was a suffragette who marched for the vote and she'd roll over in her grave if she thought I wasn't voting or encouraging my girls to recognize it as a civic duty not a chore or a waste of time. I can't remember the last time a President was actually elected with a majority of the population actually voting--Kennedy? I mean, if 42% vote and you get 50% of that (basically Bush v Gore in 2000) you're getting about 21% of the actual voting age population--not exactly a ringing mandate.  ::)

Alixz--can't believe I left off the Roosevelt's! TR is my favorite president.  :) Yes, Eleanor Roosevelt was indeed Eleanor Roosevelt Roosevelt with Franklin being about a 5th cousin, I believe. Alice Roosevelt (whose husband could've been President, he became Speaker of the House) was a legend in her day. Eleanor herself can't be left off the political equation since she became a political figure, a delegate to the UN General Assembly in 1945 and chaired the committee that drafted and approved the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. In fact, she was courted for various offices as a letter she wrote (which sounds like one Hillary Clinton might have herself written):

In the late 1940s, Roosevelt was courted for political office by Democrats in New York and throughout the country.

At first I was surprised that anyone should think that I would want to run for office, or that I was fitted to hold office. Then I realized that some people felt that I must have learned something from my husband in all the years that he was in public life! They also knew that I had stressed the fact that women should accept responsibility as citizens. I heard that I was being offered the nomination for governor or for the United States Senate in my own state, and even for Vice President. And some particularly humorous souls wrote in and suggested that I run as the first woman President of the United States!

These 2 Roosevelt women are fascinating but they deserve their own thread somewhere probably.  :)
« Last Edit: January 07, 2008, 10:31:04 PM by grandduchessella »
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Offline Ilias_of_John

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Re: End of the Monarchies
« Reply #46 on: January 08, 2008, 02:43:46 AM »
Compulsory universal suffrage is the only way. All adults over the age of 18 who are not in jail or mentally incapable MUST vote if they are citizens of a nation.That is the most BASIC of first steps towards a democratic system. Not this ridiculous "if i feel like it i will" system the Americans have.!
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Offline Robert_Hall

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Re: End of the Monarchies
« Reply #47 on: January 08, 2008, 03:10:47 AM »
The USA is not the only country that does not have compulsory voting. Very few countries that I know of do. Voter apathy is pretty universal.
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Offline Imperial.Opal

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Re: End of the Monarchies
« Reply #48 on: January 08, 2008, 04:30:54 AM »
Australia still has compulsory voting in Municipal Council,State and Federal elections, not sure about New Zealand

Offline Adagietto

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Re: End of the Monarchies
« Reply #49 on: January 08, 2008, 05:26:57 AM »
I don't at all approve of compulsory voting; if people are so uninterested that they have to be forced to vote, what is the value of their vote?

Offline dmitri

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Re: End of the Monarchies
« Reply #50 on: January 08, 2008, 05:51:47 AM »
I didn't mean to open up such a can of worms. It's good though people can debate such issues. It is very interesting to see other opinions. I have to ask the question whether the founding fathers of the United States ever envisaged a situation where a President and Congress would be at each others throats constantly impeding the ability to enact legislation for the good of the people? With a President using the veto and a Congress deliberately vetoing iniatives from the President? That surely is a constant enemy of democracy.

Offline Ilias_of_John

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Re: End of the Monarchies
« Reply #51 on: January 08, 2008, 07:09:21 AM »
I don't at all approve of compulsory voting; if people are so uninterested that they have to be forced to vote, what is the value of their vote?



The value of someones vote is the entire ethos of our democratic way of life. People have to be responsible for their actions and deeds and leaders need to be elected by the entire citizenry whom they will represent. Kennedy once said "ask what you can do for your country", well the first thing is to vote and to elect leaders who you want to represent you!.If enough people had voted at the last US presidential election, we would not have had a fiasco where the Supreme court had to announce that Dubya won nor perhaps would we be in the middle east quagmire that we are in today.
Demos means people and cratia means nation, it literally means goverment of the people.
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Alixz

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Re: End of the Monarchies
« Reply #52 on: January 08, 2008, 08:07:41 AM »
"Lethargy [is] the forerunner of death to the public liberty." --Thomas Jefferson to William Stephens Smith, 1787

Offline grandduchessella

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Re: End of the Monarchies
« Reply #53 on: January 08, 2008, 03:42:23 PM »
I have to ask the question whether the founding fathers of the United States ever envisaged a situation where a President and Congress would be at each others throats constantly impeding the ability to enact legislation for the good of the people? With a President using the veto and a Congress deliberately vetoing iniatives from the President? That surely is a constant enemy of democracy.

Considering they were constantly at each other's throats from the time of the Constitutional Convention and continuing throughout history, they probably could. There's a somewhat rosy view that the Founding Fathers got together and calmly and rationally created the Constitution. In reality, it was quite an ugly business with some real principles trading going on (notably on the issue of slavery), yet they somehow created a magnificent document. That seems to have been the difference--compromise is now regarded as an incredibly ugly word in US politics and the machinery of government practically grinds to a halt over some of the most serious issues facing the country. The few decades leading up to the Civil War were also particularly ugly--with one Senator almost being beaten to death with a cane by another during a debate over the slavery issue.
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Alixz

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Re: End of the Monarchies
« Reply #54 on: January 08, 2008, 04:22:30 PM »
Perhaps that is the fault of the two party system.  If there is no compromise between the two parties and everyone sticks to his/her own agenda, then nothing can be accomplished.

However another fault is the idea of being a "good" Republican or "good" Democrat and sticking to the party line for the good of the party instead of the good of the country.


Offline HerrKaiser

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Re: End of the Monarchies
« Reply #55 on: January 09, 2008, 11:51:13 AM »
Of course, the two party system, in spite of dead locks often occuring, is superior to a one party system where a single point of view is moved forward. it is also superior to a multi party system where a minority point of view could dominate the landscape by the concept of simple majority. Neither is in my opinion a more favorable means to an end.

the problem with the system is not the system...rather the fools who have been elected. There seems to be a innate desire to cheat, mislead, fabricate, advance themselves in almost psyschotic terms among most of those who enter the political arena. Everyone hypes the low approval ratings for Bush (in the 30s) but the Congress approval rating is at 11%. The two party system truly breaks down in Congress when they do not do the job people elected them to do, but instead fight amongst themselves for power and lots of our money.

In former times, prior to the viciousness that began around the Nixon era, within the two party system one would refer to the other party as "the loyal opposition". For the recent past and particulary evident during the Bush adminsitration and somewhat similarly during the Clinton years it had become the "disloyal opposition". It seem abundantly obvious that the Congress would allow the nation to be harmed just to succeed personally at winning political battles with the administration. The nation suffers and the people are indeed smart enough to see it, hence the abysmally low ratings for Congress.

HerrKaiser

Alixz

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Re: End of the Monarchies
« Reply #56 on: January 09, 2008, 01:48:33 PM »
After yesterday's primary results in New Hampshire, it looks as if the voters want to return to the Clinton era.  They want a repeat of the 8 years that began the "disloyal opposition" in congress.  I can't imagine why we would want to return to the cheating and lying of the Clinton years.  How soon we forget.  Nixon had Watergate and Clinton had Whitewater, and Monica, and impeachment and the suicide of Vincent Foster under mysterious circumstances and the many questionable pardons that he granted at the end of his term.  Hillary says that she was his closest advisor.  Is she admitting that she was privy to all of this and that she knew and approved (except perhaps for the Monica thing, and I think that she always knew he was a womanizer, but as long as it was a private thing , she tolerated it).

Special interest groups, political actions groups, and other lobbyists should be disallowed by law.  And that old bugaboo the "pork barrel" has to be eliminated and the only way that the pork can be cut is by a line item veto.  Many very good laws are vetoed because of lines that make no sense and much pork is included because the law is necessary and to veto it to cut the pork would veto the whole law.

Of course two parties are better than one and perhaps as you say better than multi-parties.   In every general election we all say that the independent candidates or the Green Party or the Libertarians don't truly make a statement, they simply take votes away from one major candidate or the other.

I just don't want to see our American President in tears over questions asked in the briefing room.  If questions on the campaign trail cause weepy eyes, what is going to happen when harder questions are asked by the press in Washington? (And I think that the question was another plant by the Clinton team.  No one and I mean no one would ever have asked a male candidate that question.)

Back to topic - it would seem that most forms of government last no more than about 200 years at their longest.  Even those which we still see have undergone changes some major and some minor, but none are the same as when they began.

The US passed the 200 year mark in 1976 and it does seem that we have undergone a downward swing since then.  The downward swing that began with Nixon.  Ford was just a marker to hold the office open.  Carter makes a much better ex-president that he ever did a president.  Reagan has been said to be "great" but in some ways he was just in the right office at the right time.  Then of course we had GHW Bush who started the whole Iraqi thing and Clinton who failed to do anything about a conclusion (remember the first attacks on the World Trade Centers occurred during his administration) which brings us to GW Bush.

If the Mayans were correct in their calculations, then we only have until 2012 to worry about this anyway.  And that will be the next general election in the US unless of course our next president is so incompetent that we never get to hold another general election.  Just 236 years, right on schedule.  Right up there with Rome and Greece and even the Romanovs who lasted only 304 years. 


Offline Adagietto

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Re: End of the Monarchies
« Reply #57 on: January 09, 2008, 03:37:40 PM »
Looking in from the outside, it seems to me that the presidential system doesn't work too well in this media age, it has become a lottery in which superficially attractive candidates (attractive I mean to a sufficiently large section of the electorate) are likely to be chosen over people of solid worth.  A bad sign too that the dynastic principle seems to be coming to the fore. Extraordinary to believe that you might have a Bush-Clinton-Bush-Clinton succession!

Offline Norbert

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Re: End of the Monarchies
« Reply #58 on: January 09, 2008, 03:51:32 PM »
Can we get back to the subject please? Not airing our views on the state of the Republic of North America

Offline grandduchessella

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Re: End of the Monarchies
« Reply #59 on: January 09, 2008, 04:46:18 PM »
The postings, by myself included, can get somewhat off-topic, but I don't think all the statements about the US are completely so. The creation of the US was the modern precedent for the abolition of monarchies, followed shortly thereafter (with much less success) by the French Revolution. And the issue of dynastic families, the equivalent in some ways of royalty, is an interesting one and not just confined to the US and North America--witness the Bhutto family in Pakistan and the Nehru/Gandhi one in India. Even former colonies often contain a vestige of the dynastic system they threw off. As for Bush-Clinton-Bush-Clinton(?) it goes back further--if Hillary Clinton receives the nomination, wins and serves 2 terms, there will have been a Bush or Clinton on the ticket for 36 years (from 1980 with GHWB ran with Reagan until the end of Hillary's term in 2016). That, I think, will continue to be a factor to dog the Senator--just how much dynastism (is that a word?) we're willing to accept.
They also serve who only stand and wait--John Milton
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