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Tags: voting | rights

The Mediocre Results of Voting Rights

By    |   Thursday, 06 September 2007 03:18 PM EDT

Let us imagine the hypothetical elections in 1950 of the world’s best physicist. That would be Einstein! But my assistant tells me that a friend of his in Texas has sent him two quotations from Einstein: “It is amazing that curiosity survives formal education,” and, “Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex, and more violent. It takes a touch of genius — and a lot of courage — to move in the opposite direction.”

A Russian admirer of Einstein told me that Einstein (who died in 1955) used to say that he was understood by seven people in the world. So the electorate, electing him, should consist of seven voters, for in order to even vote against Einstein, a voter should be able to understand him.

I would presume that the rescue of the free West today from the Sino-Russian danger takes a mind no less exceptional (in geostrategy) than Einstein’s (in 20th-century physics).

Officially, the form of government in England is called a “constitutional monarchy” (and that in the United States a “constitutional republic”). As for “democracy,” it came from Athens and was opposed to “aristocracy.” If democracy means the right of “demos,” that is any psychiatrically normal adult, to vote, democracy did not exist in England until the 20th century, while its constitutionalism goes back to the Magna Carta of 1215.

Democracy grants the right to vote to every psychiatrically healthy adult. But the greater the number of voters, the lower their average mental level.

In the 19th century, British constitutionalism tried to maneuver between democracy, demanding “universal suffrage”; that is, the right of every psychiatrically normal adult to vote, and the fact that the percentage of mental ability, talent, and genius is in inverse ratio to the size of the electorate.

The Reform Act of 1832 was new for the constitutional monarchy of Britain (the United Kingdom). The Act extended the voting rights of adult males, thereby allowing 1 in 7 adult males (about 14 percent) to vote. Women had no voting rights since they were supposed to be smart about “domesticity,” not the political affairs of the state and of the world. Of course, in the next century, Marie Curie became world-known in 20th-century physics (she was 12 years older than Einstein). But such women could be expected to be too few to justify the voting rights of 14 percent of adult women.

You may recall that in those days the Western countries were militarily more powerful than the rest of the world, owing to the technology of the Industrial Revolution. Compare the geostrategic situation of those days with what it is today, owing to the dictatorship of China and its 1.3 billion inhabitants, in cooperation with Russia, whose post-nuclear super weapons go back to the 1950s.

All TV stations have been showing for years the current U.S. president; and last June and July, CNN presented to us 18 presidential candidates for 2008. What can be said about them?

The elections in the West descended from the elections by a primitive tribe of its chief. That worked. Every tribesman could see that the candidate is the tallest, heaviest, and hence probably strongest man in the tribe. He was also the bravest, since he was the first to attack an enemy tribe. And look how well he uses sticks, stones, and other weapons!

But how can American voters today evaluate their prospective chieftain?

Their current chieftain, a former failed oilman from Texas, is illiterate geostrategically. He has never even mentioned the fact that the dictatorship of China is preparing, in cooperation with Putin’s Russia, the demise of the free West. Who elected the current U.S. president and will elect his successor? Those who themselves are illiterate geostrategically; and, like Hillary Clinton, were ready to play with the oil-seeking Bushes at oil-rich Iraq until Iraq became too costly in terms of American lives and American money, and perhaps will be more hostile (in the oil business as well!) to the United States than it was under Saddam Hussein.

The present U.S. chieftain and his dear father do not seem to have read, before the war in Iraq, even a five-line paragraph from “The World Almanac,” “THE AUTHORITY SINCE 1868,” on sale at any stationery store in the U.S. If either had read just this tiny bit, it would have been obvious that the overthrow and murder of Saddam Hussein, a Sunni, by Shi’a, backed by foreign troops, would result in a Sunni guerrilla war which the failed Texas oilman may call “terror,” for any war can be called “terror,” except his own.

While finding China in cooperation with Putin’s Russia, ideally peaceful, the current and future U.S. presidents (or U.S. nincompoops) may also provoke an Islamic revolt against the U.S., which may help the Sino-Russian bloc. True, there are fewer Muslims (about 1 billion) than there are Chinese; but the U.S. nincompoops may find that fighting the “terror” of 1 billion Muslims is more difficult than fighting the “terror” of Iraqi Sunni, even when their guerrilla attack involved a dozen or two dozen of them.

The U.S. movement to universal mediocrity (or nincompoopery) could be relieved by political thinkers, but where are they? Will “the mass communication media” let them appear before the microphones and TV cameras unless they are as mediocre as any consumer of their “mass communications”? The winners are those who can attract the greatest number of radio listeners or TV viewers and thus ensure the greatest profit from whatever they advertise for sale — without paying attention to the fact that their audience has the lowest common denominator as the electorate of the U.S. president and members of the U.S. Congress.

As an alternative, the “mass communications media” interview nincompoops “with a string of academic degrees.” Every radio listener or TV watcher is just bored but “science” requires the same respect that “church” once did. What were the “academic degrees” of Einstein, Marie Curie — or Eric Drexler? Nobody knows. A thinker was surrounded by an admiring elite that bought his or her books and the magazines in which he or she published. This was devoid of that awe that “academia” instills with its rituals, but saved the country from smug ubiquitous (and geostrategically suicidal) mediocrity.

* * *

You can e-mail me at navlev@cloud9.net.

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Let us imagine the hypothetical elections in 1950 of the world’s best physicist. That would be Einstein! But my assistant tells me that a friend of his in Texas has sent him two quotations from Einstein: “It is amazing that curiosity survives formal education,” and, “Any...
Thursday, 06 September 2007 03:18 PM
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