Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Change & Progress in a Demoracy

I wish to write on the real essence of what we are trying to do in the modern and enlightened world when we deal with the idea of democracy.

In a nutshell, when we talk about democracy, we are really thinking about change. Why?

The truth is that we sentient human beings are often ignorant - about where we are, where others are, and where everything will be - so we must as well own up to our inherent lack of knowledge and wisdom - not matter how much we pretend to think.

The idea of democracy is a fine ideal - of freedom of speech and action when everybody is given the leeway to do or say whatever they like in order to be happy - which we should all strive to achieve but which we know we can never really get. It sounds a bit like heaven and hell - not getting quite the real stuff.

In practice, everything collapses to majority rule, which gives rise to the tyranny of the majority. On the other hand, a small elite must control the majority, which thus give rise to apartheid or totalitarianism. In either case, the outcome really depends on the wisdom and kindness of those in power who have the right to determine who should live and die, and who should be comfortable and who should not be.

In politics, the Greek democratic ideal is reduced to the Roman republicanism which as we know through history can descend further to the monarchy of Caesar. After Caesar, tyrants and chaos.

The real uniqueness of the American Constitution is the limitation of the term of the president. A fool or a wise man can do damage or good for a period of eight years to a nation, and no more. Let the next best person try his hand to do something for the nation. There is nothing like variety.

It is this struggle for change that the freedom of speech has a critical role to play in the nation - that every man and woman who thinks he or she is good enough can stand up and argue his or her case. He or her should have a different point of view of how things should be run, no matter how good or bad, so long as the majority agree to suffer by him or her.

Without the flexibility for the change of the government or the leadership of the nation, freedom of speech is nothing but a beautiful decorative flower that only looks nice and nothing more. There is nothing to talk about, in that case.

By the same token, it is only that the last or previous leaders of the nation, having had their turn to do good, should now keep quiet and let the new prevailing leader do his or her job.

I think its sheer hypocrisy and deep disrespect for old leaders to think that they know all the answers to the problems of the nation when they already have had their chance to ruin it roundly, by being misguided in their policies when they were in power.

It is a fact that this nation has already had tried its favourite policies which have had their fair share of successes and failures. We have been there, and done that. Let us move on and try something new, something different. It may not be the perfect solution, but at least there are other parts of the nation which deserves some encouragement as well, if not anything, but to see whether that sector is still there or alive.

Furthermore, the world has also changed, and if we keep getting pestered by the same old arguments by the same old people, then I don't thing that we are giving the younger generations a fair chance to engineer their own future. The demons of the older generations cannot be inherited by the younger generations.

If indeed this nation wants to transform itself, restructure its society and obliterate race from the economy, then I think the educated young of all races should be conscripted to labour for the nation through their own private and individual interests.

It is foolhardy for any leadership to think that public largesse can be bestowed on private individuals in the hope they will repay the public by huge acts of great success and great generosity. We all know that what goes from the public purse to private pockets will only stay in private pockets provided those pockets do not have holes in them.

I do not necessarily think that the proposals of the current government are perfect and faultless. We do not know. Some of us may not like some of them. The harsh reality is the nearly impossibility to obtain a consensus in public matters. There also must be efforts to scrutinise the policy proposals. But once the time for planning is over and the time for implementation comes, we should just implement them. We shall bear the consequences and move on.

There is nothing like a rigorous debate (for new ideas to do things better. The old leadership may wish to argue that he or she also has a view as a member of the public. Fair enough, then say something new.)


Anonymous said...

We are not rich or achieving enough to chance social welfare as a standard policy. That is the first and final lesson learned.

Growing the economy and being constantly relevant to world markets are the twin challenges before us. They are challenges come about because of our social welfare standard policy.

But how do we meet those challenges today? What capability building resources do we have that we can draw upon now to meet those challenges today?

We talk about the hollowing out of our industrial backbone. Something else has also given way. Our society is also hollowing out.

One can assay we need right now at least twenty times more brains than we have at the moment to even kickstart the NEM and related programs. Where are they to be found? How are they to be polished out on time when our training centers don't even have the right calibre of lecturers and trainers? Who will be training these tutors to right-scope them to train their charges to be the future leaders of our industries?

Meanwhile some old hats have mused that their methods were still right because they said that during their time the economy was doing much better.

Maybe they are suffering from a capricious synaptic cross-relapse. Could it be the other way around? Namely, the economy was doing well from external causes until their methods laid the seeds of internal degradation?

Because of them, is it any surprise we are still dreaming away that we are capable and competent to take this nation to the next height?

The following can happen, probably will:

society will be divided; each community more its own;

offshore accounts will receive more intense focus;

those who are capable and can afford will migrate;

those who remain behind will make their money with a constant view to park it elsewhere;

people will keep to themselves, switch off all MSM, and watch their DVDs;

the industrial sector will be a skeletal shadow of its former self;

the agriculture sector will continue as it is but subject to the vagaries of commodity pricing decided elsewhere;

the services sector will be overpopulated and competition will push wages down because real skills can't be taught for reasons aforementioned;

the brand value of the country drops steadily year to year;

the cost of things go up too fast for those locked by fixed incomes; they suffer endlessly with no respite; social disorder becomes a norm, and a load on the increasingly beleaguered protection forces;

the desperate will grasp for straws see-sawed from one position to another from one day to another by political messiah wannabe's of all miens.

It will be just fire-fighting from silo planning and wild spending with snake-oil explanations and goalpost shifting.

Exactly the same methods as used in the past thirty years, isn't it?

semuanya OK kot said...

Some time ago, when laws constraining the royalty were being passed, Aliran asked who would constrain the new masters, namely the politicians.

Having demonised and taken communism apart, "democracy" has proven to be a demonic anti-human force in almost every country. It is a vast insider game of money-making at any cost. It fails even the fundamental principle: first do no harm.

Anonymous said...