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spud_meister

Democracy and Republicanism

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I see often on this site of the terms democracy and republic being misused, and being presented as contradictory systems of governance, but they're not, what the people who misuse them are referring to is direct democracy and a constitutional republic, the first being a system where governance is decided by direct vote, the latter a system where the government powers are limited and people are represented by elected officials, put succinctly by John Adams as "a government of laws, and not of men". However the terms, correctly used, are not this contradictory dichotomy, a democracy is still a democracy regardless if it's direct or representational, it is a system where people's votes decide the course of government, as opposed to an autocratic system. A republic is any state not governed by a monarch, completely independent of whether it's democratic or not, China is a republic, Iran is a republic, Cuba is a republic, and they're not exactly shining samples of represented peoples; Australia, Great Britain, Canada and New Zealand are not republics, though they all are representative democracies, they all have Queen Elizabeth as their head of state. So before you go claiming that America is a republic, not a democracy, just remember IT'S BLOODY WELL BOTH, a representative democracy and a constitutional republic.
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  1. avaris's Avatar
    I agree that america is a representative democracy. However, I feel that in our current social and economic environment, a 'representative democracy' is no more a democracy than breathing equals a quality life. the officals are more often than not bought in several different ways, through corporate campagin contributions disclosed or not. The canadites say one thing in the elections and then blantenly do not deliver or even support what they said they would. A republican canidate as an example may get many votes for his/her stance against abortion, one issue. However, although he/she may stand on this issue, it seems to fail to cross the peoples minds that he will cut your jobs, take away your health care or enable the insurance companies to make the system rediculously expensive, cut your job and or your wages, raise your taxes, lower the taxes on those who can most afford it, ship jobs oversees, and generally make it very difficult to earn a living unless you are a business owner. We all cant be business owners, some of us have to be the workers, and the workers deserve a little more of the pie than say......1/1000th of the pie. Just enough to keep you alive so that you may continue making profits for the business. The only true democracy is a pure democracy, where all major decisions are voted on by all the individuals that are effected by that decision, that is, the citizens. Thats the only way to take corporations out of the picture. As it stands, corporations run the government, and most of us work for corporations, i thought working for the government was supposed to have good pay and benifits? doesnt seems the case in current america that is and will continue to see a step decline in living standards of the average person, all in the name of 'representative democracy' and 'greed'.
  2. American's Avatar
    I think maintaining the distinction between democracies and republics is important, because more Americans these days don't know govt or their asses, from a hole in the ground. They think they have a right to vote for everything. They don't understand why we don't use popular vote for every sing thing. Our education system, run by liberal (sorry), is woefully inept and teaching them what they need to know about our republic or the Constitution.

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