Thursday, December 01, 2005

#81, The Overthrowing

In the name of Allah, the Compassionate, the Merciful.
When the sun is overthrown, and when the stars fall, and when the hills are moved, and when the camels big with young are abandoned, and when the wild beasts are herded together, and when the seas rise, and when souls are reunited, and when the girl-child that was buried alive is asked for what sin she was slain, and when the pages are laid open, and when the sky is torn away, and when hell is lighted, and when the garden is brought nigh, then every soul will know what it hath made ready.
Oh, but I call to witness the planets, the stars which rise and set, and the close of night, and the breath of morning, that this is in truth the word of an honoured messenger, mighty, established in the presence of the Lord of the Throne, one to be obeyed, and trustworthy; And your comrade is not mad. Surely he beheld Him on the clear horizon. And he is not avid of the Unseen. Nor is this the utterance of a devil worthy to be stoned.
Whither then go ye? This is naught else than a reminder unto creation, unto whomsoever of you willeth to walk straight. And ye will not, unless (it be) that Allah willeth, the Lord of Creation.


Our honourable treasurer says there is no place in our democracy for people who want to introduce Shari’a- what a tosser! You can’t just suddenly arbitrarily decide that our present system is the acme of excellence and try to preserve it exactly how it is forever. It wasn’t so many years ago I remember his telling us that our constitution was no good and we had to throw it our and get a new one. There is no difference in principle between replacing the Queen with some party political hack and replacing her with a Caliph or a democratically elected council of mullahs. Show some consistency, Pete! If someone thinks the country should be run in a completely different way, they have the right to form a political party with a clearly stated platform of introducing cargo-cult socialism, or Islamic Law, or whatever, and if they manage to get voted in, they should be able go ahead and do it.* That is what democracy is supposed to be about. A party tells you what its policy is, and then you vote for it or not. You don’t say, for instance, that you’re ‘never ever’ going to do something, and then do it...

*: If Barnaby Joyce lets them.

5 comments:

Marco said...

You better watch it! You'll be done for sedition. However, he's trying to run the country more like a dictatorship now, because, dictatorship-type pollicies make a country more immune to "terrorism", as well as other possible advantages over other too democratic countries that have stopped growing, and have miserable populations (EU economies for instance)

Dr. Clam said...

Yes, I think we have a duty to test the limits of these bstardly new sedition laws!

Are you now agreeing with my criticism of your invisible hand argument and agreeing that pandering to the selfish wishes of the electorate has brought France and Germany to their present state of decay? :) You can't say all democracies have stopped growing and are miserable- my exhaustive research to disprove this thesis has involved watching the Country Music Channel and a few Bollywood musicals, but last I noticed the USA and India were thriving optimistic democracies...

I think the main difference between terrorism in democracies and dictatorships is simply that we get to hear about terrorism in democracies: for example, those Uighur groups that the Renegade Mainland Provinces call terrorists probably *really are* terrorists and have caused all sorts of trouble in East Turkestan, but we just don't get to hear about it here!

Marco said...

Are you now agreeing with my criticism of your invisible hand argument and agreeing that pandering to the selfish wishes of the electorate has brought France and Germany to their present state of decay? :)

Well, yes and no. The sytem of proportional representation in these European countries is the real culprit. Any reasonable analysis of the political dynamics that cause the badbutpopular policies at fault there, will demonstrate that to be effective, democracies need to be run like one-party-states between elections. Also, there needs to be enough time between elections for unpopular policies to show popular effects. However well India is doing, China is doing better partly because it can implement policies without being held hostage by interest groups. My "invisible hand" point is the structure of government will determine whether individual greed will work for good or bad in a democracy, as tax and trade policy does in economics.

Dr. Clam said...

You've got it wrong- China might be doing better than India, but it is a functioning multiparty democracy with a much smaller, wealthier, and more ethnically homogeneous population.

Oops, you were talking about the renegade mainland provinces. Well, I think their policies are unsustainable. Given a proper valuation of the yuan and emancipation of their pool of slave labour, sometime in the next decade they will fall over and end up well behind India. That's only my poorly-researched opinion, but I'd be willing to bet Sandor's life on it.

Marco said...

Sure! You're on - Sandor's been missing too many volleyball games lately anyway :-). As for the invisible hand, you are not addressing my point that there are similar dynamics in democracies that are very analogous to economic ones. Surely you can recognise similar patterns of behaviour, game play (as in game theory), competition between individuals, corporations and countries. Turn off your logic circuits for a moment and turn on your pattern recognition sensors!