Why Is Democracy Such A Fragile Form Of Governance?

The short answer is that it is an unnatural contrivance. Our most basic impulses are tribally oriented. That is to say we are endowed by nature to line up behind the big chief, the alpha male, the king. But since the big chief is often a self-serving brute, society has struggled for a replacement to the big chief as the all-wise, ultimate group authority — the tribal system of governance.

Democracy, an attempt at a limiting system of majority group rule, seems to have become the best replacement to that of being directed by an all-powerful, tribal chieftain. Unfortunately our primitive tribal impulses keep trying to break out of democracy’s restraints. And as might be expected, would-be dictators/demagogues are only to ready to oblige, beyond all reason, our most primeval impulses for a all powerful chieftain.

Mussolini, Stalin, Hitler and now Putin and Trump come to mind as modern day, brute, tribal chieftains, although Trump is still as yet in his “apprentice” stage of dictatorship, but, still, seriously threatening to smash to kingdom come the world’s, as yet, greatest democracy.

You see, my friend, democracy is a very sophisticated form of governance, requiring at least a minimum degree of cooperation among the governed. And since within every society there is a significant number of tribally primitive minds that have no idea of what democracy really means and how ii works, and frankly could care less, they are naturally drawn toward their primitive authoritarian impulses.

In other words these folks have never evolved a level of intellect required of a democracy. Moreover, it is those whom expect to economically profit from a dictatorship — much of Wall Street — that joins them. Indeed, it is this split between the intellectually un-evolved joined by the excessively greedy, being in opposition to the more sophisticated, democratic loving members of the American society that forms the true political divide within our nation, thus making democracy a very fragile concept.

Jim Ridgway, Jr. military writer — author of the American Civil War classic, “Apprentice Killers: The War of Lincoln and Davis.” Christmas gift, yes!

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