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Thread: Founding Fathers Visiting Egypt

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    Re: Founding Fathers Visiting Egypt

    Quote Originally Posted by Morality Games View Post
    Some aspects of American government are laudable (as far as I am concerned, our judiciary is second to none), but over long periods of time, parliaments are generally superior legislatures.
    I completely agree; I was just going to say the same thing. Although it makes Americans feel warm and fuzzy to see nascent democrats inspired by our Constitution, I would strongly advise Egypt against adopting a presidential system. This is a very very bad idea for a country with a history of strongmen and military rule. They'd be much better off with a Parliament where power is more diffuse.

    I've heard the presidential system described as America's most dangerous export...and for good reason.
    Last edited by Kandahar; 02-13-11 at 10:18 PM.
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    Re: Founding Fathers Visiting Egypt

    Quote Originally Posted by Gardener View Post
    You must not realize that Iran's literacy rate is close to 20 points higher than Egypt's.
    ...and if the only thing you read is the Koran and associated texts, literacy doesn't help avoid extremism...


    ... but here's hoping for the best.

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    Re: Founding Fathers Visiting Egypt

    Quote Originally Posted by Morality Games View Post
    Some aspects of American government are laudable (as far as I am concerned, our judiciary is second to none), but over long periods of time, parliaments are generally superior legislatures.
    I disagree. I like the Separation of Powers that exists in the American system and is largely absent in the Parliamentary system...

    There isn't one "right" form of Democracy. Different cultures have different ways of expressing the will of the people, but I do have a preference for the Presidential System...
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    Re: Founding Fathers Visiting Egypt

    Quote Originally Posted by Walter View Post
    Strange that an Islamic Society would wish to reference a Constitution whose precepts were based upon Blackstone's Commentaries on Law...which in turn was completely based upon Judeo/Christian philosophy.

    Commentaries on the Laws of England - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    Sir William Blackstone - Constitution, America, Law, Oxford, Bible, Witchcraft
    Why is that so strange when Islam has similar roots to Christianity?
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    Re: Founding Fathers Visiting Egypt

    Quote Originally Posted by Morality Games View Post
    Not a fair comparison. The Civil War and all the political conflict leading up to it illustrates the fragility of our legislative branch. Additional tension was subverted by technological achievements which vastly altered the landscape of the human condition across the world, in a relatively short period of time.

    Anyway, if anything, the English Civil War illustrates the strength of Parliaments, since it united a geographically and culturally divided group against a hereditary monarch and won.

    Parliaments have a better track record when it comes to building a consensus which represents the full spectrum of political opinions held by a nation's inhabitants while still maintaining effective policies that guard against the encroachments of time. They satisfy both the psychological and economic demands of a democratically-inclined population.

    Our Congress would be great if we had learned gentry with strong civil service ethic and a culture which supported them, but a lasting rift between the average American and the Founding Fathers is that the former has very strong populist inclinations.

    Populism and Republicanism don't go together. Republicanism imposes heavy demands on the thoughts and behavior of its adherents, whereas populism imposes any demand it wants upon the systems governed by it. Unfortunately, our legislature does not support those demands.
    It works in some countries, but Italy and Japan, among others, are notably unstable and regulary change governments. Even England has a rather tricky coalition government right now that has the potential to cause problems there as the term goes on...
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    Re: Founding Fathers Visiting Egypt

    Quote Originally Posted by ludahai View Post
    It works in some countries, but Italy and Japan, among others, are notably unstable and regulary change governments. Even England has a rather tricky coalition government right now that has the potential to cause problems there as the term goes on...
    Japan has traditionally been very stable. Only within the last 10 years or less has it had any other government then the LDP after WW2 ( short exceptions of course)
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    Re: Founding Fathers Visiting Egypt

    Quote Originally Posted by ludahai View Post
    I disagree. I like the Separation of Powers that exists in the American system and is largely absent in the Parliamentary system...
    And that's fine...for the United States. It's not so good for fledgling democracies, especially if they have a history of authoritarianism.

    Quote Originally Posted by ludahai
    There isn't one "right" form of Democracy. Different cultures have different ways of expressing the will of the people, but I do have a preference for the Presidential System...
    I see no reason to believe that having a president versus having a parliament is a cultural phenomenon, or that Egypt in particular is better able to express the will of the people through one rather than the other. However, there is plenty of reason to believe that the probability of making a successful transition from autocracy to democracy is much better with a parliamentary system.
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    Re: Founding Fathers Visiting Egypt

    Quote Originally Posted by Lord Tammerlain View Post
    Japan has traditionally been very stable. Only within the last 10 years or less has it had any other government then the LDP after WW2 ( short exceptions of course)
    1. It is quite rare for a government to last even as long as 18 months. -- 50 governments since WWII is hardly stable...
    2. The notion that the LDP dominated government is very misleading as there are many factions within the LDP that have been vying for power, resulting in a highly unstable system in the country.
    Last edited by ludahai; 02-14-11 at 01:18 AM.
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    Re: Founding Fathers Visiting Egypt

    Quote Originally Posted by ludahai View Post
    It works in some countries, but Italy and Japan, among others, are notably unstable and regulary change governments. Even England has a rather tricky coalition government right now that has the potential to cause problems there as the term goes on...
    And I think most Egyptians would be thrilled if their political system resembled that of Italy, Japan, or the UK. That would be a huge step forward. It's getting there that's the problem. It's a mostly academic debate whether a parliament or a president is better for well-established democracies...but it's a very important and practical matter for countries trying to make the transition, which have a far better chance with a Parliament. If Egypt firmly establishes democracy and it looks like Italy in 20 years...THEN maybe it would be time to consider a presidential system.
    Last edited by Kandahar; 02-14-11 at 01:15 AM.
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    Re: Founding Fathers Visiting Egypt

    Quote Originally Posted by Gardener View Post
    You must not realize that Iran's literacy rate is close to 20 points higher than Egypt's.
    Indeed. And if they had "real" elections there, they'd vote out the theocracy in a heartbeat. But they don't have real elections, and the Iranian army WILL slaughter protesters without a moment's hesitation.

    The protesters won in Egypt for one reason, and one reason only: The army refused to fire upon them.

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