Democracy, Schemocracy?

More than two decades ago I was taught what Democracy meant. I don't remember the exact words but I pretty much recall these phrases - "By the People", "For the people" ... The key word to notice here is "By

So will imposing it from outside, ever work in the Arab world? I have my doubts. It challenges the basic premise behind the philosophy. The process is designed to work when it is selected, respected and followed by the people - on their own terms. For democracy to be meaningful it needs to be inspired by the local cultural, political and economic practices

Imagine this: A responsible neighbor comes to my house.. sets up the TV, fridge, elects me a Mom and a Dad, gives me a brother, teaches me to respect the younger siblings (minorities) in a way that is acceptable to the neighborhood, convinces some of the family members on his principles (that may not be present in my book of virtues) ... also promises me to give me money on a frequent basis to start off my family "progress" (that I promise not to squander on getting intoxicated and other good things in life) ... and blah blah blah... 

I'd say that person is nice, but something tells me it won't work. I am not going into the debate of who deserves what, but it can only grow slowly when the people want it. Democracy is an organic process not a computer program. It can't just be installed!


  1. Anonymous15.3.11

    True. I agree a 93 percent. Democracy is indeed a very elevated theory and to succeed in practice it needs to go through an organized evolution into it, not just a simple revolution. Anarchy and the "D" word to justify it is effective bringing down the house but falls way short of building a healthy one again. The world will tell you "Are you blind? Can't you see it is the People?" What,really?? A country of 83 million is apparently well-represented by a mob of 5 million (Democracy???!!!?!!) as long as they are skillfully pelting plenty of stones and some getting killed in the process by the unfair and tyrannous efforts of law and order by the elected villains of the govt. And they are still protesting. Against whom? Themselves? I think the people do not know what the rest of the world imagines them to be doing. People would hold on to any buzz word that will get them external support and sympathy. But what after? It's your country the effort is a thousand times greater when it comes to building. Did anyone think about that? I think the majority is really passive or more carefully planning. The vocal ones end up as the so-called 'People' visible to the World who does not any better beyond protesting. That was Egypt, may they protest in peace. And by the way, it seems everybody knew Mubarak was such a villain all the while but NO ONE told me that. Why not? In fact I was told quite the opposite all these years - by the UN, USA, Arabs, Eastern, Western, Arabic, Israeli Media. Was it only a scheme against me that I have been deprived of this dark wisdom? Or is it that I am the biggest ignorant on Earth?

    And I can't even start talking about Libya... maybe another time, in another vain babble. But who is listening anyways.

    kintu Haal Chhedona Bondhu...

  2. Boy this has to be the biggest and the most passionate comment I have seen on my posts. Thank you for that :)

    But coming back to the purpose of democracy. Lets drop India for a moment. Israel has been holding the D burden in the Arab world for some time now. They have also been a US ally for a long time. Has it worked for them? I guess in a lot of ways it has. I don't know if they exemplify the democratic process (citizenship, border disputes...) but they sure have some great economics to boast of. It really matters if a country has a fair system of selection. The stress here is on "system". What you do with the system - is anybody's game.

    We (and a lot of other countries) have a "garbage in, garbage out" system as far as the political system is concerned. But then it is not true that we have a poor voter turnout all across the country. We have a decent voter turnout in villages and low in cities and together it comes to around 55-60%. Now if you wanted to win.. whom would you target? Also to win in that demographic what kind of qualifications do you think the political leaders will have to have? We can balance it a little by voting more in the cities.. but the majority will always win. And "we" are not in majority brother.

    Yes, even I didn't pay too much attention to Egypt's leader until recently. Mostly because he is not the only one and it doesn't affect me more than a data point in the hobby I have (for collecting political junk). One of my friends who happens to share this hobby has commented something similar on my Facebook wall with regards to this post. I think you both will like each other's company in shooting the breeze. Check out my FB Wall :)

    Love your thoughts... keep commenting!