Feed on

I have these faint remembrances from time to time of things my mom and grandmothers used to say to us, “if everyone wants to jump off the Brooklyn Bridge …”

Well, some lessons from our youth deserve to live on in posterity. Have you ever heard an argument that goes something like, “well, most Americans want XYZ …?” I hear it regularly, particularly as it pertains to single-payer health insurance in the United States. And for some they believe that the virtue of democracy is that it is a tool to ensure that the majority get exactly what they want. Of course, I see this as the major problem with democracy too, and the reason we have those stuffy old annoying pieces of paper called Constitutions. You might even see what some old dead white guys’ thoughts were on this very idea. This one is well known.  This perhaps should be better known.

What was it that Mencken said? “Democracy is the theory that the common people know what they want, and deserve to get it good and hard” … a bit harsh, I know.

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