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Category: The Story of Democraczy

The Story of Democraczy: Epilog

Collisions, Desire, and the Tipping Point   2,013 AD

Secrecy                                                1,917 AD

Capitalism and . . . Globalization              1,787 AD

The Theological Impulse                         1,775 AD

Morphosis of a Citizen                            1,819 AD

Freedom of . . .                                     1,791 AD

Revolution                                             1,775 AD

Enlightenment and Romanticism              1,700 AD

Very Early Modern                                 1,500 AD

Late Middle Ages                                   1,300 AD

High Middle Ages                                   1,000 AD

Early Middle Ages                                     400 AD

Pericles:                                                   450 BC

Ephialtes:                                                 465 BC

Cleisthenes:                                              500 BC

Solon:                                                      600 BC

Hammurabi:                                           1,800 BC

Ur Nammu:                                            2,000 BC

Gilgamesh:                                             2,500 BC

Sumeria:                                                5,300 BC

Lascaux:                                              30,000 BC

Religious activity:                                100,000 BC

Homo sapiens:                                    130,000 BC

Homo erectus:                                 1,500,000 BC

Homo habilis:                                   2,500,000 BC

Epilog

The Story of Democraczy: Chapter Seventeen

Secrecy                                                1,917 AD

Capitalism and . . . Globalization              1,787 AD

The Theological Impulse                         1,775 AD

Morphosis of a Citizen                            1,819 AD

Freedom of . . .                                     1,791 AD

Revolution                                             1,775 AD

Enlightenment and Romanticism              1,700 AD

Very Early Modern                                 1,500 AD

Late Middle Ages                                   1,300 AD

High Middle Ages                                   1,000 AD

Early Middle Ages                                     400 AD

Pericles:                                                   450 BC

Ephialtes:                                                 465 BC

Cleisthenes:                                              500 BC

Solon:                                                      600 BC

Hammurabi:                                           1,800 BC

Ur Nammu:                                            2,000 BC

Gilgamesh:                                             2,500 BC

Sumeria:                                                5,300 BC

Lascaux:                                              30,000 BC

Religious activity:                                100,000 BC

Homo sapiens:                                    130,000 BC

Homo erectus:                                 1,500,000 BC

Homo habilis:                                   2,500,000 BC

secrecy5

redacted24

“The attack on the New York Harbor and, more broadly, the beginning of the United States involvement in World War I marked the birth of the modern secrecy movement. During the first days of World War I, the Army implemented the first modern information-classification system. And just weeks after the United States entered the war, Congress passed the Espionage Act of 1917, which made it unlawful to disseminate information relating to the broad categories of national defense or public defense.”

–       John D. Podesta and Judd C. Legum

redacted27

For me there is almost nothing ””””” ”””””” ”””””””””””””’ ”””””””””””””” the concept of democracy than the ””””””””””””””’ ””’ ”””””’ secrecy. For starters, openness ””’ ””””’ ””””””””””” ”””””””””””’ ””” ”’ ”””””””””””’ ””””””””””””””’  ”” is impossible ””’ ””””””’ ””” ””””””””””’ ”””””””””’ ””’ ”””””””””””’ without it. For a ”””””” ”””””””””””’ ””””” ”””””””” to have the ”””””””’ ””’ ”””””””” ””””””’ ””””’ ”””””””’ ””’ ”” whim is ””””””””””””” ””’ democracy’s mandate.

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Aside ”””””” ”””””””””” ””’ ””””””””””’ ””””””””””””””””’ on the Constitution or infractions of law, or of circumventing or interfering with the legal system, there is a ””””””””””””””””’ elite who ”””””’ ”””””’ can, with the ””””””” ””’ ”””””’ Sharpie, ””””””””””’ information ””””” ”””””’ ”””””””” ”””””” ”””’ ”””””””’ ”” ””””” ””””””””””””””’

redacted18

One other side ””””””’ ””’ ””””””””””””””’ ””””’ ”””””””” secrecy ”” ””””’ bureaucracies, ”””””””’ ” ”””””” ””””” ”””’ ”’ ”””””””””””” ”””””””””””””’ ””’ ””” effective ””””””””””””” ”””””””””’ ””””’ ”””””” ”’ tool ””” ””””””’ ””’ ””””””””””” ””’ obstruct ””””””””””””””””” ”””””””””””’ ”” ””””” ””””””””””””’.

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The Story of Democraczy: Chapter Sixteen

Capitalism and . . . Globalization              1,787 AD

The Theological Impulse                         1,775 AD

Morphosis of a Citizen                            1,819 AD

Freedom of . . .                                     1,791 AD

Revolution                                             1,775 AD

Enlightenment and Romanticism              1,700 AD

Very Early Modern                                 1,500 AD

Late Middle Ages                                   1,300 AD

High Middle Ages                                   1,000 AD

Early Middle Ages                                     400 AD

Pericles:                                                   450 BC

Ephialtes:                                                 465 BC

Cleisthenes:                                              500 BC

Solon:                                                      600 BC

Hammurabi:                                           1,800 BC

Ur Nammu:                                            2,000 BC

Gilgamesh:                                             2,500 BC

Sumeria:                                                5,300 BC

Lascaux:                                              30,000 BC

Religious activity:                                100,000 BC

Homo sapiens:                                    130,000 BC

Homo erectus:                                 1,500,000 BC

Homo habilis:                                   2,500,000 BC

25 CEOs    2008

25 CEOs 2008

“Many economically successful nations — from Russia to Mexico — are democracies in name only. They are encumbered by the same problems that have hobbled American democracy in recent years, allowing corporations and elites buoyed by runaway economic success to undermine the government’s capacity to respond to citizens’ concerns.”                           – Robert B. Reich

25 Stock Exchanges  2010

25 Stock Exchanges 2010

There seem to be two general ways of looking at the relationship between capitalism and democracy, besides those people who actually confuse or conflate the two. There are those who see them as inextricably intertwined in some symbiotic relationship wherein each supports and embellishes the other – or even to the point where they cannot exist without each other. And there are those who see democracy as having been created by white men of wealth who, while somehow building in certain rights for, well, at the time just themselves, also created a system whereby they effectively built in a veto over the critical issues that affect the maintenance of their estates. In addition it is stated that a democratic government, because of its dependence on economic growth, and because of the system of campaign financing which basically has no oversight, eventually becomes subservient to and dependent upon, capitalism’s priorities.

25 Stock Traders  2011

25 Stock Traders 2011

Additionally, it appears that the global economy is in certain ways taking this debate out of the hands of national governments. The commingling of funds, dispersal of production, and diffusion of accounting systems make it difficult for national governments to maintain oversight of these international companies. It is possible to visualize a time when global capital will have created its own quasi government that would be independent of national, and perhaps international, popular control. One does not even have to straighten one’s arm to reach back to the first Obama administration’s quizzical enchantment with Goldman Sachs alumni to have reason to ponder such questions.

25 Credit Default Swaps  2011

25 Credit Default Swaps 2011

Still, the citizenry within this particular national entity, the United States, do have, through their use of the vote, the capability of taking control in such a way that wealth can be more equitably distributed even while maintaining a viable capitalist structure. This restructuring has been approached a few times historically and, while sometimes falling back, it is the awareness that some success has occurred that can lead to its further achievement.

25 Sweatshops  2009

25 Sweatshops 2009

“It fell, therefore, to the working class itself to fight for its right to vote, and a long fight it was, passing through many momentous battles such as the Peterloo Massacre in 1819, the great Chartist campaign from 1838 to 1859, the revolutions of 1848, the Paris Commune of 1871, the Belgian General Strike of 1893, the campaigns for votes for women, and right down to the US Civil Rights movement of the 1950s and 60s.”  – John Molyneux

25 Big Macs  2008

25 Big Macs 2008

The Story of Democraczy: Chapter Fifteen

The Theological Impulse                         1,775 AD

Morphosis of a Citizen                            1,819 AD

Freedom of . . .                                     1,791 AD

Revolution                                             1,775 AD

Enlightenment and Romanticism              1,700 AD

Very Early Modern                                 1,500 AD

Late Middle Ages                                   1,300 AD

High Middle Ages                                   1,000 AD

Early Middle Ages                                     400 AD

Pericles:                                                   450 BC

Ephialtes:                                                 465 BC

Cleisthenes:                                              500 BC

Solon:                                                      600 BC

Hammurabi:                                           1,800 BC

Ur Nammu:                                            2,000 BC

Gilgamesh:                                             2,500 BC

Sumeria:                                                5,300 BC

Lascaux:                                              30,000 BC

Religious activity:                                100,000 BC

Homo sapiens:                                    130,000 BC

Homo erectus:                                 1,500,000 BC

Homo habilis:                                   2,500,000 BC

“The more the conditions of men are equalized and assimilated to each other, the more important is it for religion, while it carefully abstains from the daily turmoil of secular affairs, not needlessly to run counter to the ideas that generally prevail or to the permanent interests that exist in the mass of the people.” – Alex de Tocqueville

Some experts like to say that the ideas of good and bad, right and wrong, and the “natural” (inalienable) rights on which the United States Constitution and the Bill of Rights are based, were endowed by a god. That issue aside, it is inescapable that the vast majority of the citizenry at the time of the founding and, it follows, the same majority of those making the decisions about how the above documents were written, were, though multi-denominational, deeply immersed in religious observance.

Given this entrenched deism, it is still somewhat astonishing that after much consideration they decided that it was critical to officially separate the government they were creating from religious practice. It is said that this was as much due to their fear that the government might ultimately begin to affect and dictate matters of observance as it was for reasons of religious belief interfering with matters of governing. The salient point in all of this is that regardless of any statement in the founding papers, the U.S. began its tenure as a democracy behind a deeply entrenched position in religious moral belief, and that position continues today in various public ways: in the pledge of allegiance, in the swearing in of witnesses in court, and in the swearing in of elected and non-elected public servants – regardless of whether these officials are or are not actually religious.

We are aware that moral ideas inherent within the doctrines of traditional belief may be applied by believers in ways that are sometimes considered questionable, and it appears to me that within this contradiction lies the moral dilemma that has hounded the USA, and the practice of democracy, from its inception – the fact that an overreliance on inconsistent moral values can instill limitations in terms of how one assesses and processes indeterminate change.

This is not to cast religious belief itself in any negative loom, but is to say that preordained moral beliefs originating from an entrenched and formidable attitude weigh heavily on the growth of a polity. As an observation, recent readings on this subject seem to find little questioning about the appropriateness of religious teaching as it applies in this area. Religion continues to be the untouchable cow of political discussions. I don’t see a similar hands-off approach to arguments about corporate belief and involvement or that of unions. It seems to be in a singular class with regard to the tolerance (toleration) of its engagement.

But again, the right of religion to participate in the political body and to speak equally is not the issue here (though the effect of its inherent size and power, along with other types of large, activist organizations, to my mind, is one); rather it is our awareness that religion’s continuing contemporary involvement does reinforce the historical weight pressing on our consideration of moral issues.

The success of a system, such as there is in the United States (and I know this reeks of an idealist imperative), requires the maintenance of a common belief based on the goals (and notice I don’t use the word missions) of the society as expressed in and stemming from its constitution and bill of rights. And it is the ability to freshly reassess our moral precepts in relationship to these goals and our knowledge of a dynamic world, that is preeminent to an evolving democracy.

The Story of Democraczy: Chapter Fourteen: Morphosis of a Citizen

Morphosis of a Citizen    1,819 AD

Freedom of . . .             1,791 AD

Revolution                     1,775 AD

Enlightenment                1,700 AD

and Romanticism

Very Early Modern         1,500 AD

Late Middle Ages            1,300 AD

High Middle Ages            1,000 AD

Early Middle Ages              400 AD

Pericles:                            450 BC

Ephialtes:                           465 BC

Cleisthenes:                       500 BC

Solon:                               600 BC

Hammurabi:                    1,800 BC

Ur Nammu:                     2,000 BC

Gilgamesh:                      2,500 BC

Sumeria:                          5,300 BC

Lascaux:                        30,000 BC

Religious activity:          100,000 BC

Homo sapiens:               130,000 BC

Homo erectus:            1,500,000 BC

Homo habilis:              2,500,000 BC

Power is not an institution, and not a structure; neither is it a certain strength we are endowed with; it is the name that one attributes to a complex strategical situation in a particular society.- Michel Foucault

Chronology of Court Rulings Toward Corporate Citizenship

Trustees of Dartmouth College v. Woodward (1819)
Corporate charters are ruled to have constitutional protection.

Munn v. State of Illinois (1876)
Property cannot be used to unduly expropriate wealth from a community (later reversed).

Santa Clara County v. Southern Pacific Railroad (1886)
The substance of this case (a tax dispute) is of little significance, but this fateful case subsequently was cited as precedent for granting corporations constitutional rights. Several articles linked above detail how this happened.

Noble v. Union River Logging Railroad Company (1893)
A corporation first successfully claims Bill of Rights protection (5th Amendment)

Lochner v. New York (1905)
States cannot interfere with “private contracts” between workers and corporation — marks the ascension of “substantive due process” (later mitigated after President Roosevelt threatend to add Justices to the Court).

Liggett v. Lee (1933)
Chain store taxes prohibited as violation of corporations’ “due process” rights.

Ross v. Bernhard (1970)
7th Amendment right (jury trial) granted to corporations.

U.S. v. Martin Linen Supply (1976)
A corporation successfully claims 5th Amendment protection against double jeopardy.

Marshall v. Barlow (1978)
The Court creates 4th Amendment protection for corporations — federal inspectors must obtain a search warrant for a safety inspection on corporate property.

First National Bank of Boston v. Bellotti (1978)
Struck down a Massachusetts law that banned corporate spending to influence state ballot initiatives, even spending by corporate political action committees. Spending money to influence politics is now a corporate “right.” Justice Rehnquist’s dissent is a recommended read.
Related articles: * Ballot Initiatives Hijacked   *   Behind the Powell Memo

Central Hudson Gas v. Public Service Comm. of NY (1980)
This oft-cited decision concerns a state ban on ads promoting electricity consumption.

Austin v. Michigan Chamber of Commerce (1990)
Upheld limits on corporate spending in elections.

Thompson v. Western States Medical Center (2002)

Nike v Kasky (2002)
Nike claims California cannot require factual accuracy of the corporation in its PR campaigns. California’s Supreme Court disagreed. The U.S. Supreme Court took up the case on appeal, then issued a non-ruling in 2003. See our comprehensive archive on this case.

Randall v Sorrell (2006) While this case dealt with the legality of Vermont’s contribution limits, not corporations directly, it carried important implications for corporate political influence, as Daniel Greenwood detailed in our amicus brief to the U.S. Supreme Court.

Citizens United v Federal Election Commission (2010). In a 5-4 ruling, the U.S. Supreme Court overrules Austin and a century of federal legislative precedent to proclaim broad electioneering rights for corporations.

I believe there are more instances of the abridgment of the freedom of the people by gradual and silent encroachments of those in power, than by violent and sudden usurpations.- James Madison, Federalist Papers

The Story of Democraczy: Chapter Thirteen

Freedom of . . .             1,791 AD

Revolution                     1,775 AD

Enlightenment                1,700 AD

and Romanticism

Very Early Modern         1,500 AD

Late Middle Ages            1,300 AD

High Middle Ages            1,000 AD

Early Middle Ages              400 AD

Pericles:                            450 BC

Ephialtes:                           465 BC

Cleisthenes:                       500 BC

Solon:                               600 BC

Hammurabi:                    1,800 BC

Ur Nammu:                     2,000 BC

Gilgamesh:                      2,500 BC

Sumeria:                          5,300 BC

Lascaux:                        30,000 BC

Religious activity:          100,000 BC

Homo sapiens:               130,000 BC

Homo erectus:            1,500,000 BC

Homo habilis:              2,500,000 BC

“The root of the ancient estimation of politics [was] the conviction that man qua man, each individual in his unique distinctness, appears and confirms himself in speech and action, and that these activities, despite their material futility, possess an enduring quality of their own because they create their own remembrance.”   – Hannah Arendt

Fire is the rapid oxidation of a material in the chemical process of combustion, releasing heat, light, and various reaction products. In its most common form fire can result in conflagration, which has the potential to cause physical damage through burning. The positive effects of fire include stimulating growth and maintaining various ecological systems. The negative effects of fire include water contamination, soil erosion, atmospheric pollution and hazard to animal and human life.   – Wikipedia

It may be a fire

Tomorrow it may be nothing

It may reach up to the sky

Light up everything I know

Everywhere I go from now

I will see better than before

–  Moody Blues

The Story of Democraczy: Chapter Twelve

Genesis                         1,787 AD

Revolution                     1,775 AD

Enlightenment                1,700 AD

and Romanticism

Very Early Modern         1,500 AD

Late Middle Ages            1,300 AD

High Middle Ages            1,000 AD

Early Middle Ages              400 AD

Pericles:                             450 BC

Ephialtes:                           465 BC

Cleisthenes:                       500 BC

Solon:                                600 BC

Hammurabi:                    1,800 BC

Ur Nammu:                     2,000 BC

Gilgamesh:                     2,500 BC

Sumeria:                          5,300 BC

Lascaux:                        30,000 BC

Religious activity:          100,000 BC

Homo sapiens:               130,000 BC

Homo erectus:            1,500,000 BC

Homo habilis:              2,500,000 BC

Put yourself in the moment. You have been a revolutionary, energized by your anger at being subjected to and controlled by rules and situations conceived and authored by those with whom you violently disagree. Suddenly you realize that you have accomplished the practically impossible and have won!  Now what?

It is fascinating to try to imagine, or even conjure, the “now what?” moment when Revolutionary leaders realized they had actually achieved this surprising and perhaps unexpected military victory. It was almost enough fulfilled in gathering the momentum and carrying out such an insane, perhaps impossible, venture. But then to prevail unexpectedly may leave one in a state of bewilderment. It is not unusual in history for revolutionaries to lack the skills to transition into domestic leadership. As determined as it was and by knowledgeable people, one still feels the impression, in the thoughts following their victory, of a certain amount of naive flailing – as if blind will were carrying their efforts toward an optimistic conclusion.

One can sense, in the records of the various meetings and in the Federalist Papers, outlined below, that those, suddenly responsible, representatives had to devise a system that played to all of their various needs, requirements, and prejudices. What was of course unique to the American ex-colonies was that there was no historic system already in place. There was no royalty to take into account nor was there was an instituted military to contend with. There were only landowners, shopkeepers, politicians, and theorists (which, in my book, were already quite enough).

So there was a blank slate with only the histories and unproven philosophies of others to reference, and their own prejudices, both personal and represented. You can see the intense and unsettling struggle between those who felt a largely centralized system would be more effective (as evidenced by the heavy hitters John Jay, Alexander Hamilton, and James Madison below) and those who desired a more localized, separate, and independent existence (backed by an equally heavy lineup). One can also see, from the vantage point of 225 years later, that the issue was never fully resolved – or shall I say: agreed to.

All this is just to say that when one thinks about democracy in the United States of America, that is the system, there were perhaps a half dozen basic issues that tilted the balance toward a primarily, though much less in those days, centralized system, while still providing cover for those who were concerned about individualism and localized control. From today’s perspective what was explained to me in early education as the “flexibility and adaptability” of the system, I now see as really the perpetuation of the original struggle.

The Federalist Papers

1 General Introduction Hamilton For the Independent Journal – –
2 Concerning Dangers from Foreign Force and Influence Jay For the Independent Journal – –
3 The Same Subject Continued:
Concerning Dangers from Foreign Force and Influence
Jay For the Independent Journal – –
4 The Same Subject Continued:
Concerning Dangers from Foreign Force and Influence
Jay For the Independent Journal – –
5 The Same Subject Continued:
Concerning Dangers from Foreign Force and Influence
Jay For the Independent Journal – –
6 Concerning Dangers from Dissensions Between the States Hamilton For the Independent Journal – –
7 The Same Subject Continued:
Concerning Dangers from Dissensions Between the States
Hamilton For the Independent Journal – –
8 The Consequences of Hostilities Between the States Hamilton From the New York Packet Tuesday, November 20, 1787
9 The Union as a Safeguard Against Domestic Faction and Insurrection Hamilton For the Independent Journal – –
10 The Same Subject Continued:
The Union as a Safeguard Against Domestic Faction and Insurrection
Madison From the New York Packet Friday, November 23, 1787
11 The Utility of the Union in Respect to Commercial Relations and a Navy Hamilton For the Independent Journal – –
12 The Utility of the Union in Respect to Revenue Hamilton From the New York Packet Tuesday, November 27, 1787
13 Advantage of the Union in Respect to Economy in Government Hamilton For the Independent Journal – –
14 Objections to the Proposed Constitution from Extent of Territory Answered Madison From the New York Packet Friday, November 30, 1787
15 The Insufficiency of the Present Confederation to Preserve the Union Hamilton For the Independent Journal – –
16 The Same Subject Continued:
The Insufficiency of the Present Confederation to Preserve the Union
Hamilton From the New York Packet Tuesday, December 4, 1787
17 The Same Subject Continued:
The Insufficiency of the Present Confederation to Preserve the Union
Hamilton For the Independent Journal – –
18 The Same Subject Continued:
The Insufficiency of the Present Confederation to Preserve the Union
Hamilton and Madison For the Independent Journal – –
19 The Same Subject Continued:
The Insufficiency of the Present Confederation to Preserve the Union
Hamilton and Madison For the Independent Journal – –
20 The Same Subject Continued:
The Insufficiency of the Present Confederation to Preserve the Union
Hamilton and Madison From the New York Packet Tuesday, December 11, 1787
21 Other Defects of the Present Confederation Hamilton For the Independent Journal – –
22 The Same Subject Continued:
Other Defects of the Present Confederation
Hamilton From the New York Packet Friday, December 14, 1787
23 The Necessity of a Government as Energetic as the One Proposed to the Preservation of the Union Hamilton From the New York Packet Tuesday, December 17, 1787
24 The Powers Necessary to the Common Defense Further Considered Hamilton For the Independent Journal – –
25 The Same Subject Continued:
The Powers Necessary to the Common Defense Further Considered
Hamilton From the New York Packet Friday, December 21, 1787
26 The Idea of Restraining the Legislative Authority in Regard to the Common Defense Considered Hamilton For the Independent Journal – –
27 The Same Subject Continued:
The Idea of Restraining the Legislative Authority in Regard to the Common Defense Considered
Hamilton From the New York Packet Tuesday, December 25, 1787
28 The Same Subject Continued:
The Idea of Restraining the Legislative Authority in Regard to the Common Defense Considered
Hamilton For the Independent Journal – –
29 Concerning the Militia Hamilton From the Daily Advertiser Thursday, January 10, 1788
30 Concerning the General Power of Taxation Hamilton From the New York Packet Friday, December 28, 1787
31 The Same Subject Continued:
Concerning the General Power of Taxation
Hamilton From the New York Packet Tuesday, January 1, 1788
32 The Same Subject Continued:
Concerning the General Power of Taxation
Hamilton From the Daily Advertiser Thursday, January 3, 1788
33 The Same Subject Continued:
Concerning the General Power of Taxation
Hamilton From the Daily Advertiser Thursday, January 3, 1788
34. The Same Subject Continued:
Concerning the General Power of Taxation
Hamilton From the New York Packet Friday, January 4, 1788
35 The Same Subject Continued:
Concerning the General Power of Taxation
Hamilton For the Independent Journal – –
36 The Same Subject Continued:
Concerning the General Power of Taxation
Hamilton From the New York Packet Tuesday, January 8, 1788
37 Concerning the Difficulties of the Convention in Devising a Proper Form of Government Madison From the Daily Advertiser Friday, January 11, 1788
38 The Same Subject Continued, and the Incoherence of the Objections to the New Plan Exposed Madison From the New York Packet Tuesday, January 15, 1788
39 The Conformity of the Plan to Republican Principles Madison For the Independent Journal – –
40 The Powers of the Convention to Form a Mixed Government Examined and Sustained Madison From the New York Packet Friday, January 18, 1788
41 General View of the Powers Conferred by the Constitution Madison For the Independent Journal – –
42 The Powers Conferred by the Constitution Further Considered Madison From the New York Packet Tuesday, January 22, 1788
43 The Same Subject Continued:
The Powers Conferred by the Constitution Further Considered
Madison For the Independent Journal – –
44 Restrictions on the Authority of the Several States Madison From the New York Packet Friday, January 25, 1788
45 The Alleged Danger From the Powers of the Union to the State Governments Considered Madison For the Independent Journal – –
46 The Influence of the State and Federal Governments Compared Madison From the New York Packet Tuesday, January 29, 1788
47 The Particular Structure of the New Government and the Distribution of Power Among Its Different Parts Madison From the New York Packet Friday, February 1, 1788
48 These Departments Should Not Be So Far Separated as to Have No Constitutional Control Over Each Other Madison From the New York Packet Friday, February 1, 1788
49 Method of Guarding Against the Encroachments of Any One Department of Government by Appealing to the People Through a Convention Hamilton or Madison From the New York Packet Tuesday, February 5, 1788
50 Periodic Appeals to the People Considered Hamilton or Madison From the New York Packet Tuesday, February 5, 1788
51 The Structure of the Government Must Furnish the Proper Checks and Balances Between the Different Departments Hamilton or Madison From the New York Packet Friday, February 8, 1788
52 The House of Representatives Hamilton or Madison From the New York Packet Friday, February 8, 1788
53 The Same Subject Continued:
The House of Representatives
Hamilton or Madison From the New York Packet Tuesday, February 12, 1788
54 The Apportionment of Members Among the States Hamilton or Madison From the New York Packet Tuesday, February 12, 1788
55 The Total Number of the House of Representatives Hamilton or Madison From the New York Packet Friday, February 15, 1788
56 The Same Subject Continued:
The Total Number of the House of Representatives
Hamilton or Madison From the New York Packet Tuesday, February 19, 1788
57 The Alleged Tendency of the Plan to Elevate the Few at the Expense of the Many Considered in Connection with Representation Hamilton or Madison From the New York Packet Tuesday, February 19, 1788
58 Objection that the Number of Members Will Not Be Augmented as the Progress of Population Demands Considered Madison – – – –
59 Concerning the Power of Congress to Regulate the Election of Members Hamilton From the New York Packet Friday, February 22, 1788
60 The Same Subject Continued:
Concerning the Power of Congress to Regulate the Election of Members
Hamilton From the New York Packet Tuesday, February 26, 1788
61 The Same Subject Continued:
Concerning the Power of Congress to Regulate the Election of Members
Hamilton From the New York Packet Tuesday, February 26, 1788
62 The Senate Hamilton or Madison For the Independent Journal – –
63 The Senate Continued Hamilton or Madison For the Independent Journal – –
64 The Powers of the Senate Jay From the New York Packet Friday, March 7, 1788
65 The Powers of the Senate Continued Hamilton From the New York Packet Friday, March 7, 1788
66 Objections to the Power of the Senate To Set as a Court for Impeachments Further Considered Hamilton From the New York Packet Tuesday, March 11, 1788
67 The Executive Department Hamilton From the New York Packet Tuesday, March 11, 1788
68 The Mode of Electing the President Hamilton From the New York Packet Friday, March 14, 1788
69 The Real Character of the Executive Hamilton From the New York Packet Friday, March 14, 1788
70 The Executive Department Further Considered Hamilton From the New York Packet Friday, March 14, 1788
71 The Duration in Office of the Executive Hamilton From the New York Packet Tuesday, March 18, 1788
72 The Same Subject Continued, and Re-Eligibility of the Executive Considered Hamilton From the New York Packet Friday, March 21, 1788
73 The Provision for Support of the Executive, and the Veto Power Hamilton From the New York Packet Friday, March 21, 1788
74 The Command of the Military and Naval Forces, and the Pardoning Power of the Executive Hamilton From the New York Packet Tuesday, March 25, 1788
75 The Treaty Making Power of the Executive Hamilton For the Independent Journal – –
76 The Appointing Power of the Executive Hamilton From the New York Packet Tuesday, April 1, 1788
77 The Appointing Power Continued and Other Powers of the Executive Considered Hamilton From the New York Packet Friday, April 4, 1788
78 The Judiciary Department Hamilton From McLEAN’s Edition, New York – –
79 The Judiciary Continued Hamilton From McLEAN’s Edition, New York – –
80 The Powers of the Judiciary Hamilton From McLEAN’s Edition, New York – –
81 The Judiciary Continued, and the Distribution of Judicial Authority Hamilton From McLEAN’s Edition, New York – –
82 The Judiciary Continued Hamilton From McLEAN’s Edition, New York – –
83 The Judiciary Continued in Relation to Trial by Jury Hamilton From McLEAN’s Edition, New York – –
84 Certain General and Miscellaneous Objections to the Constitution Considered and Answered Hamilton From McLEAN’s Edition, New York – –
85 Concluding Remarks Hamilton From McLEAN’s Edition, New York

The Story of Democraczy: Chapter Eleven

Revolution                     1,775 AD

Enlightenment                1,700 AD

and Romanticism

Very Early Modern         1,500 AD

Late Middle Ages            1,300 AD

High Middle Ages            1,000 AD

Early Middle Ages              400 AD

Pericles:                             450 BC

Ephialtes:                           465 BC

Cleisthenes:                       500 BC

Solon:                                600 BC

Hammurabi:                    1,800 BC

Ur Nammu:                     2,000 BC

Gilgamesh:                     2,500 BC

Sumeria:                          5,300 BC

Lascaux:                        30,000 BC

Religious activity:          100,000 BC

Homo sapiens:               130,000 BC

Homo erectus:            1,500,000 BC

Homo habilis:              2,500,000 BC

I have alluded somewhat vaguely to the merits of democracy. One of them is quite obvious: it is, perhaps, the most charming form of government ever devised by man. The reason is not far to seek. It is based upon propositions that are palpably not true and what is not true, as everyone knows, is always immensely more fascinating and satisfying . . . . . .          H. L. Mencken

This is the juncture of a narrative that has spanned at least several thousands of years. Clearly, from the list you can browse below, the American, as followed by the French, Revolution was not the first popular rebellion or revolt; but it was, at the very least, a high point in the evolution of human rights. The authors of the period of enlightenment, having drawn from the continual outcry of a multi-millennial chronicle, released a pent-up reserve that resulted in a new level of humans’ heretofore little realized expression of their desire for participation in their own destiny.

The American Revolution was induced by an array of actions that constrained the economic activity and viability of colonists and also had the effect of limiting their participation in governance. This control on the part of their British rulers was enough to cause these colonists to decide to put their bodies, and their lives, at peril. One must stand in awe of the decision to take such a step (though the commitment varied within the colonies, to wit the Virginia gentry’s willingness to be indignant about the limitations placed on them, but their hesitance, almost refusal, to offer themselves to the potential of physical risk). Still, it is important to try to apprehend the conditions that aligned in order for people to resolve to defiantly alter their circumstances.

But the story of democracy does not stop at the successful conclusion of these one or two Revolutions – immense as they were. The system of republican democracy, for it is that – a system, only began then. It was what those people determined to be appropriate toward the accomplishment of their goals . . . . and desires. We, each generation of Americans, since this system was initiated, are the beneficiaries of their determination; and each successive generation had/has the ability, if not the obligation, to look at this institution anew – as if never before seen. We get to parse it and to understand how it applies to us in the present – over 200 years later, when, as compared to the original states, the population has multiplied 100 times, the occupied land has at least quadrupled, most of us will never personally see or have a conversation with our federal representatives (much less our local ones), and the world’s opposite longitude is reached physically in hours and electronically in microseconds.

Have we, as J. L. Mencken  laughingly put it, been presented a magic trick, a sleight of hand that we believe in, as in a sacred cow, without knowing whether it actually works toward attaining those markers that we attribute to it? Is it supplying us with benefits that no other known or yet unknown system can provide? Does it fulfill the desire that we project as necessary to having a satisfactory life – that is, the existence that we attained when we each achieved original consciousness?

The History of Popular Rebellions

BC

1–999 AD

1000–1499

1500–1699

1700–1799

–  Wikipedia

The Story of Democraczy: Chapter Ten

Enlightenment                 1,700 AD

and Romanticism

Very Early Modern          1,500 AD

Late Middle Ages            1,300 AD

High Middle Ages            1,000 AD

Early Middle Ages              400 AD

Pericles:                               450 BC

Ephialtes:                              465 BC

Cleisthenes:                          500 BC

Solon:                                     600 BC

Hammurabi:                        1,800 BC

Ur Nammu:                         2,000 BC

Gilgamesh:                          2,500 BC

Sumeria:                              5,300 BC

Lascaux:                            30,000 BC

Religious activity:          100,000 BC

Homo sapiens:                130,000 BC

Homo erectus:             1,500,000 BC

Homo habilis:               2,500,000 BC

You’ll find as you go through life that great depth and smoldering sensuality don’t always win.”

Woody Allen

Having read the “Bible” page in Chapter Nine (below) about Gutenberg and De Docta Ignorantia one might be reveling in the notion that the spread of knowledge would induce rapid movement toward a more equitable society. However, a familiar battle between those who already have and those who never had had simply been joined. It turned out, as we should be well aware, that power does not want to let go of itself so easily.

The relationship between the philosophies of Enlightenment and Romanticism is not easily discerned. Initially, one was seen as an outspoken reaction to the other. But, ultimately, they were both efforts to liberate the intellect and psyche from centuries of social, as well as psychological, restraint.

In retrospect it appears that the Romantic reaction to reason and logic was a perhaps unconscious attempt to add another unexplored dimension to being and toward the accomplishment of a whole personality – one that could pursue a logical analytic process while also being capable of exploring inner sensations and feelings. What seems to have tipped both of these movements away from a pure exploration and expression of the personality and into the world of partisanship is, as always, those who have a prior agenda. Contentious justification from both camps was rampant during each of their eras, even as those times overlapped, as though the whole frightening aspect – separation from church and royalty – was, except for a vociferous few, too much to contemplate.

Most surprising and distressing, it was the lower classes that exhibited a preference, in England at least, for maintaining most of the status quo as it related to royalty and to resisting the concept of independence, rule by all people, and political liberty.

An amazing consequence of all this, it appears to me, is that the concept of popular spin became manifest during this time. Intellectual freedom, while permitted, engenders argument and adherents of both philosophies spent much paper on inventing validation for why one notion or the other was more significant and important.

And yet, at the overlap of these two movements, the waning of one and the inception of the other, two huge political revolutions occurred, in the United States and in France.

There are those contemporary citizens in the United States, I believe, who have still not accepted that England did not win the rebellion of 1776. The notion of privilege and exceptionalism, (perhaps an expression of personal desire), which once was endemic to descendants of our early settlers, now reigns through the breadth of our culture. In our era, which once seemingly prided itself on critique and comprehension, there are some who see knowledge as a threat to the maintenance of their positions, and a significant number who prefer to view the notion of reason as being hostile to a functioning society. That is to say that, in terms of social change, time moves (what was once) glacially.

The Story of Democraczy: Chapter Nine

Very Early Modern          1,500 AD

Late Middle Ages            1,300 AD

High Middle Ages            1,000 AD

Early Middle Ages              400 AD

Pericles:                             450 BC

Ephialtes:                           465 BC

Cleisthenes:                        500 BC

Solon:                                600 BC

Hammurabi:                    1,800 BC

Ur Nammu:                     2,000 BC

Gilgamesh:                      2,500 BC

Sumeria:                          5,300 BC

Lascaux:                        30,000 BC

Religious activity:          100,000 BC

Homo sapiens:               130,000 BC

Homo erectus:            1,500,000 BC

Homo habilis:              2,500,000 BC

When I got the chance
I asked them a slew of questions.
They offered to burn me;
it was the only thing they knew.

                                        Pablo Neruda

42 Line Page 2012