Democracy : LUSENET : Countryside : One Thread

When the thirteen colonies were still a part of England, Professor Alexander Tyler wrote about the fall of the Athenian Republic over two thousand years previous to that time.

"A democracy cannot exist as a permanent form of government. It can only exist until the voters discover that they can vote themselves money from the public tresury. From that moment on the majority always vote for candidates promising the most money from the public treasury, with the results that a democracy always collapses over loose fiscal policy followed by a dictatorship."

"The average age of the world's greatest civilizations has been two hundred years. These nations have progressed through the following sequence: From bondage to spiritual faith, from spiritual faith to great courage, from great cpourage to liberty, from liberty to abundance, from abundance to seflishness, from selfishness to complacency, from complacency to apathy, from apathy to dependency, from dependency back to bondage."

Alexander Tyler

-- Hendo (OR) (, November 18, 2000


The worst thing in the world next to anarchy, is government. -Henry Ward Beecher Bureaucracy is the technical embodiment of hell itself. - C.S. Lewis

-- Ed Weaver (, November 18, 2000.

How true, Hendo! Benjamin Franklin said, when questioned as to if we were to be a democracy, or a republic, answered, " A republic, if we allow it to exist". We are the ones responsible for changing the direction this country is taking, that of one away from being being a true Republic, we must demand a return of Constitutional responsibility by all elected officials. It saddens me to see so many Americans still clinging to the archaic two party system, there exists recourse, but most Americans are reluctant to take it. Perhaps that alone speaks volumes in itself. Annie in SE OH.

-- Annie Miller (, November 18, 2000.

I'd say we've progressed to dependency. In line with what Annie said, I've gotten responses to emails about Truck Stop 2000. Four or five are spreading the word and they are conservative groups. One was a trucking company saying they're going to stick with the status quo and will have their business open for regular working hours that day. One was a constitutional org which said timing was bad, wait until after the holidays and the house is back in session, to which the reply was: then what? Easter and bills have already been started to pass. Although businesses and news orgs won't spread the word, enough of your working class can make a difference. Let's hope we can reverse the process.

-- Epona (, November 18, 2000.

I had my boys read this and they agree with me, we have fast moved from apathy to dependency. I feel bad that those who are the worst in this aspect, will never believe it. The human has a great capacity to fool themselves.

-- Cheryl (, November 18, 2000.

Once again, history will repeat itself. We are in a state of dependency because history is not taught at home or in the public schools.

Our politics are not divided between Democrats and Republicans. We are divided between taxpayers and tax consumers.

-- Laura (, November 18, 2000.

Laura, like Joel says, let's stop feeding the beast, we should all stop paying Federal income taxes, no money, no power, they will have to listen to us then. We all know it's the middle class that shoulders the burden of paying taxes, the never ending "bank" has got to close the doors. There are very creative ways of complying with this. Annie in SE OH.

-- Annie Miller (, November 18, 2000.

I am lost as to the fear of anarchy ? To myself it makes mandatory the use of ones ones own assets to care for themselves. Do I have your definition wrong ? Or, is no government what you fear ? I have no need of anyone on earth to direct my life, do you ? What is your fear of no government ?

My eutopia on earth would involve a sealed county where we all share the wealth and have no need of outside influences. I don't need their oil, their interference or their precious metals. I need food, water, heat and God and these I already have ! So tell me please, why do I need anything else ?

-- Joel Rosen (, November 19, 2000.

Without some form of Republic to guarantee a measure of freedom for all, there would soon be no clean water, no breathable air, and land will only be held by those most powerful to guard, and hold it. It is human nature to have those both good, and evil, the evil always trying to take advantage of all they can, be it polluting your water supply upstream, or burning their toxic waste and poisoning you, or forcing you off your place, and taking it by brute force. I believe this is has already existed in the past as the Feudalism period in the Middle Ages, I wouldn't want to return to that period of history. Something has to exist that protects the rights of those not powerful enough to keep their freedoms themselves, such as single or widpwed women, the sick, and the elderly. A true Republic is the answer in my opinion, Annie in SE OH.

-- Annie Miller (, November 19, 2000.

Annie, the thing which is upposed to provide for the widows and the down trodden is the Church. The idea that a good government can exist wiothout direct acknowledgement od God flies in the face of the creator. Remember, one Nation under God, endowed by their Creator, etc., etc. We have successfully allowed the socialistic services of government to usurp the place of the church and most churchres are held hostage to the IRS with the 501c3. This is a DIRECT affront to the First amendment and there is no giant public outcry.

As for anarchy, I don't like it and I don't want it, but it is the natural progression of things. In order to really clean the house it has to be made completley messy first.

-- Doreen (, November 19, 2000.

If men will not be governed by the Ten Commandments, they will be governed by the ten thousand commandments.- G.K.Chesterton

-- Ed Weaver (, November 19, 2000.

There is a clear separation of the Church and State made in the Constitution, I personally don't want the Church to be responsible for the care and welfare of anyone not a willing member of said Church. Religion, especially, Christianity, has started more wars in this world, and pain and suffering, than the two World Wars combined. I follow the general teachings of the Bhuddist beliefs, and find that a lot of the Christian teachings to be hypocritical, and illogical. Thomas Jefferson and I have a lot in common concerning religion and government, thank goodness that freedom of, or from, religion is guaranteed us all under the Constitution. Annie in SE OH.

-- Annie Miller (, November 19, 2000.

I guess I'm just different. I try to live by natural law and won't live with the 10,000 commandments and, BTW, we have way more than 10,000 of them. I have no fear of anyone taking from me an I have no desire to take from them. I fear God but I'll respect your right to go to hell in a handbasket with no dispute. I have the ability to grow and protect my own food and clean water. I will take respndibility for my aging parents and my sons and daughters will take respondsibility for their mothers. I have no need of government of any type. I just don't ! I'll respect your right to have one as long as it does not tax me or interfere in my affairs. If you do require a government than perhaps it is you who needs to put your own house in order and stop looking for an entity to do it for you. The last line is a comment for society in general and not intended at any individual.

-- Joel Rosen (, November 20, 2000.

"No man is an island", Joel, not all of us have a private militia to protect what is ours, nor would I want to have to have one to live peacably amongst others. How would you prevent others from polluting the air you breathe, and the ground water you drink, if some order were not maintained? Even children need strict guidelines to grow up as responsible adults, morals and ethics do not appear in one spontaneously, they are taught, and enforced. Annie in SE OH.

-- Annie Miller (, November 20, 2000.

Annie is right -- and believe it or not, Annie, what you just said is right out of the Bible!!

-- Kathleen Sanderson (, November 20, 2000.

Annie is right -- and believe it or not, Annie, what you just said is right out of the Bible!! I don't think that you realize just how much of our cultural values and mores are Bible-based. I'm sorry that you take such offense at Christianity. I wonder if you realize that most of what calls itself Christianity is, in fact, not? The word "Christian" means 'follower of Jesus Christ', and I'm afraid that many people who think of themselves as Christians are in no way followers of Jesus Christ. You would have to do some serious in- depth study of the Bible to see what Jesus Christ was like, so you would know how to identify His followers. But people who start wars in His name are doing so in direct disobedience to His word, so can't possibly be followers.

Now, I have no problem with you believing in Buddha (even though he's dead) rather than Jesus Christ (who is alive), but I love Jesus Christ with all my heart. I'm sorry if that offends you, but I have to wonder why? Would it offend you if I mentioned that I believed something my husband or a friend told me? Yet, Jesus Christ means more to me than my husband, and is the best friend I have ever had. He is real, living, almighty God; He has changed my life, my dreams, goals, standards, values, and morals. I can no more speak of anything important without mentioning Him than I could live without breathing. If it's okay for you to mention that you are a Buddhist, why is it NOT okay for me (or other Christians) to mention our beliefs? Let's not have a double standard here, please.

Sorry if I seem to sound a little upset (I am, but I do realize that God doesn't need to be defended by me!), but I'm getting really tired of the current New Age fad of Christian bashing.

-- Kathleen Sanderson (, November 20, 2000.

Kathleen, I believe you have found the source of my sometimes frustration with Christians, which if they practice what they preach, does not offend me at all. It is the hypocrisy that offends only, not the person, we all have our faults, and I should be more understanding of other's faults additionally.

I do not worship Buddah, I try to follow the teachings of the Dalai Lama to achieve harmony of body, mind, and soul, within myself, and to live more peacefully with others. I find this not unlike the teachings of Jesus, his "Love your neighboor as yourself" is most similiar, or perhaps it is more familiar as "the Golden Rule".

I find it hard to understand how people who call themselves Christians constantly fail to follow the Ten Commandments, especially , the "thou shalt not kill" one in particular, perhaps I have misunderstood that this is not a requirement?

I apologize, Kathleen, for any offense I have made to you, or other Christians, and will try to be more understanding in the future. Annie in SE OH.

-- Annie Miller (, November 20, 2000.

(I'll get to the Democracy discussion in a paragraph or so...)

Hey, I'm a Christian, and folks that I meet are terrified when they find out that *I* am. (slight exaggeration...I haven't seen them quake with fear or anything...) They EXPECT me to start proselytizing and asking them to accept the Lord Jesus Christ as their personal Savior. This shows you how some people perceive Christians these days. It's based on their experiences with some very vocal, and possibly somewhat obnoxious Christians. I have gently led more people to my faith by being an example, and talking about it to them, ONLY if they express an interest in it (which happens eventually b/c they want to know how I deal with those human problems we all have from time to time.) I also don't put them down for their beliefs. That always keeps the dialog going. God gave us free will, so they can exercise theirs, too.

btw, on the subject of democracy... It worked in 5th century Athens ok. Small population, most folk not enfranchised (slaves, women, children.) One black pebble for yea, one white pebble for nay (or maybe the other way around.) They voted on everything. It would be hard to have a true democracy with our set-up these days. DEMOCRATIC values, though, should always be considered.

And, just like medicine has expanded the human life span, better communication has expanded the lifespan of a great civilization, imho. (Except for bad technology, like antique voting machines!)

-- sheepish (, November 20, 2000.

I would like to suggest that we are past dependency, we are in bondage (or slavery). The ownership of land is an illusion, as we are not allowed to use it or build on it as we please, and we have to ask permission everytime we'd like to do something with it- even to dig an outhouse hole or paint a house. The IRS can bill you for taxes and fees you don't owe( even if you pay taxes), and steal your land without a trial. The government can come and assume custody of your children and make them a ward of the state. The children, if they are in public school, are taught to be good slaves-oops I meant citizens. To make sure we don't have any time to teach them anything subversive, they are sent home with reams of homework. The gov't also steals a portion of whatever money you earn, and if you are a good little sheep, gives you a refund so you'll keep cooperating every year. True, our bondage is still voluntary, and most of us volunteer into it. But it's getting to the point where they just assume you are a voluntary slave even if you've taken great pains to avoid their snares. Every baby born in a hospital becomes a citizen with a SSN#, and they are after the midwives to make sure that this applies to home births too. I saw the movie, the Patriot, a few nights ago. It brought tears to my eyes to realize how greivious the cost of our freedom was, and how casually we have let it slip away. Just promise us peace and prosperity, and we'll let them get away with just about anything. When and where are we going to draw the line and quit enabling this corruption, under the illusion that our country is the best in the world?

-- Rebekah (, November 20, 2000.

Rebekah, since it has taken awhile for the country to get this bad, since the time FDR was in office, and made such a mess of our Constitution, it is going to take a while to straighten things back out, but I firmly believe it can be done, as long as folks like you are there to demand a return to the Constitutional principals.

I think that this current mess of an election will be good for the cause of furthering the "Third Party" initiative, that people don't have to vote for the "lesser of two evils" anymore, that there exists many other alternatives. Have you investigated the principals of the Libertarian party, if not, I urge you to visit their website, , they may have some answers to the questions you pose, and provide a direction for the future. Annie in SE OH.

-- Annie Miller (, November 20, 2000.

Annie, I can't answer for everyone that calls themself a Christian; nor can I say that I am an infallible example of the Lordship of Christ. This is my perception of Christianity, and perhaps why I don't mesh with the institutions AT ALL. Jesus, Who came to this fallen planet as God in the flesh; was born in humility in a barn foster-son to a common laborer. He lived, He worked, He loved, and He dwelt amongst the earthy, common man...touching the lepers, talking to the harlots, taking as His disciples the publicans, tax collectors, fisherman--those most despised by the soft-handed religious elite. He taught us that the wisdom of God comes through the revelation of the Spirit.(Not in semanaries, colleges, etc.) In taking off His robes, He teaches us how to wash one another's feet.How much "education does one need to be a foot washer? In going to the Cross He teaches us how to lay down our lives (selfish pursuits? sin nature...all that is not in symbiosis with life in the Spirit) for the care of others...and so that the power of God will us. I'm sorry you find Christianity to be hypocritical; I do too, but I don't let it become a stumbling block; my prayer is that everyone would be so hungry in their spirits that they would not rest until their spirits found union with the living God as well. It is only through this union that wars cease, love pours freely, healing comes, as well as the power of God!!! Please check out a post I'm putting up called "The review that turned into a devotional...." ok??!!Love in Christ, Beth

-- Beth Weber (, November 21, 2000.

What will happen if Christ comes back? Easy, he will be killed again. The human animal has not changed in thousands of years. Man has better manners and can hide what they do much better.The spirit of man has not changed. The meek will only inherit death. The strong will take everything if there is not an equal power to stop them. So joel if several large companies build all around you and start to kill you by polution and items dumped on your land what will you do? You by yourself would die and your family with you. Unless of course you had some kind of power base (like Government regulation)to help you. It's funny really because government is you, good or bad. You can make it what you want. All religions are made of rules for people to get along with each other. Most do not follow what they claim they believe or say they believe. No one believes christians anymore because so many lie. Who's fault is that? I don't mean on a National level. We learn from those near us. If more christians would live the life and talk about it a lot less it would help make the religion stronger. Right now all the talk is destroying it. Take a good look at the religious leaders in this country and you will see the problem. They want to control government like it was done a thousand years ago. For somewhere around 500 years the christian religion simply controled governments and collected wealth. There were no religious teachings. It was a very good example of what happens when religion crosses with government. Not Good.

-- Nick (, November 24, 2000.

Nick, it isn't if, it is WHEN. And we will not kill him again. You may have heard the phase "once for all" and that is it. Christ was/is God and he sacrificed His life for us oNE TIME ONLY. When He returns, many will try to kill Him and be deluded by the power of Satan into thinking that they might be able to do it, a litlle altercation called Armeggeddon might ring a bell with you. When Jesus returns it will not be meek and gentle. He will return with a sword and power and majesty and EVERYONE will know that He is God and no longer be decieved by their own imaginings. He will then bring us into the millenial kingdom which is a return to a dictatorship, but it will be under God, not man.

You are right about religious leaders and government. That is man tyrying to get control for himself. You are dead wrong about the return of Christ.

-- Doreen (, November 24, 2000.

I guess we will just have to wait and see.

-- Nick (, November 24, 2000.

Don't's coming. It's a good thing,too!

-- Doreen (, November 24, 2000.

It really doesn't matter to me one way or the other. I can survive just about anywhere. I live life in such a manner that if I died tomorrow I have no fear. But since people have been saying he is coming for quite a long time, I won't hold my breath. Now if you know something about the actual date. You do realize that he is going to have to hurry up if he wants to see anything left on the earth. We only have about 20 to 50 years before all hell breaks loose(no pun intended). I would like to believe that the good people will be taken care of, but there is only one way to know for sure.But I'll keep an eye out and let you know if I see something.

-- Nick (, November 25, 2000.

Nick, don't worry, when He comes back next time, everyone will know it, there won't be any room for mistakes!! But we don't have any dates, and in fact, the Bible forbids us to speculate about dates. There are some signs given, by which we can know that the end is drawing closer, and we see many of these signs being fulfilled in our lifetimes, but there is no use guessing as to dates. There is a very good reason for this -- it would affect how we live if we *knew* that Jesus would be returning tomorrow -- and it would also have affected the early disciples if they had known that two thousand years later, we would still be waiting for a return which they thought was imminent. It is imminent, and always has been, in God's eyes, as He exists outside of the dimension of time that we live in. Even though it has been so long in human terms, I don't have any doubt that Jesus will return, just as He said He would. All the prophecies in the Bible, except the ones pertaining to the end times, have been fulfilled, and the ones pertaining to the end times are in the process of being fulfilled, just on God's timetable rather than ours! Will I be here still alive to see it? I don't know, but I've been trusting Him with my moments and my days for over twenty-six years, and I am content to trust Him with my eternity.

I was going to say that we've really gotten off topic here, but then I re-read the last sentence of the original post. Notice where spiritual faith comes in that list? As a nation we've left that way behind. Here on this forum there are an unusually large percentage of people who truly believe in God, yet even here I think we are a minority. At any given time, individuals can be any place on the continuum of bondage > spiritual faith > great courage > liberty > abundance > selfishness > complacency > apathy > dependency > bondage. But where is our nation as a whole?

-- Kathleen Sanderson (, November 26, 2000.

This has kind of turned into discussion on if and when christ will come back. This is not what was intended. It reminds me of an arguement I witnessed a long time ago. When you work Midnight to eight in a tower in the prison system you need to find ways to stay awake. All towers are connected by an intercom system. An old officer I knew liked to start discussions or just pull peoples chains to see what would come of it. There were 3 well known and respected christians in the towers and all were from different churches. I don't remember the question but I never heard such a discussion in my life. They went on for 7 straght hours and then went at it for 3 more nights. Anything and everything you ever wanted to know about the bible was discussed. They didn't speak to each other for the next 6 months after thet. The best part is that they agreed on very little.The rest of the towers were laughing so hard it's a wonder an inmate didn't excape.

-- Nick (, November 26, 2000.

Moderation questions? read the FAQ