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neverfail
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Re: we have been there already cass.

Post by neverfail » Sat Jan 05, 2019 10:57 pm

cassowary wrote:
Sat Jan 05, 2019 4:49 pm

I did not propose that in my book. What I suggested was that Votes for Senators be based in the amount of taxes each voter pays. In other words, those who pay more taxes get more votes. The voting rules for the lower House of Representatives remain the same
, ie one man one vote.
The Senate in the USA, as here in Australia, is a house of review. It cannot inaugurate legislation (which emanates from the lower house) but it can block it.

We (or at least the United States) has been there before. Do you recall the Missouri compromise?

Well, it was inaugurated by President Andrew Jackson's administration to placate the slave owning southern states after one of them (South Carolina) threatened to succeed in 1831. The goal of that agreement was to keep the number of slave states and the number of free states in the American union equal. If a new free state carved from their western frontier were admitted then likewise a new slave state had to be accepted to balance that up.

Why was maintaining that balance so important? Because under their constitution each state (then as now) had the same number of senators to represent it. Furthermore, senators were in those days appointed by state governments, not elected by the public as they are now. It meant that there were equal numbers of senators permanently in place representing the slave and free states. Under the rules of the US Senate any bill in which there are an equal number of yes and no votes in ruled to be in the negative; it has not passed.

It was in other words an institutionalised filibuster designed to ensure that the interests of the slave owning plantocracy were protected from the tender mercies of the northern abolitionists.

One might argue that you cannot compare modern multi-billionaire businessmen with the slave owning Dixie planters of yore. Well, you can! For throughout much of the first half of the 19th century it was exports of plantation crops like cotton and tobacco that earned the United States the lion's share of its foreign exchange - thereby helping to keep the young republic solvent.

I reject your view that the Senate ought be elected on the basis of voter's incomes for the reason that I would have rejected the effects of the Missouri Compromise. It has all of the potential to corrupt American public life further just as empowering the southern plantocracy thus in days of yore did.

neverfail
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Re: we have been there already cass.

Post by neverfail » Sat Jan 05, 2019 11:01 pm

Milo wrote:
Sat Jan 05, 2019 9:23 pm

Again it's how they do it in Singapore and the chickens of tyranny have yet to come home to roost, so Cass doesn't (want to) see the problem.

I figure this generation of Lees will be the last before Singapore slides into full-on corrupt dictatorship.
An illuminating observation Milo.

Singapore is still a young, rather cocksure, republic. It is yet to reap the whirlwind it has sown by a system apparently designed to ensure unrelenting economic growth instead of empowering ordinary members of the public.

Canada and Australia might grow more slowly: but I would wager my money on both outlasting Singapore.

Jim the Moron
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Re: we have been there already cass.

Post by Jim the Moron » Sun Jan 06, 2019 10:08 am

neverfail wrote:
Sat Jan 05, 2019 10:57 pm
cassowary wrote:
Sat Jan 05, 2019 4:49 pm

I did not propose that in my book. What I suggested was that Votes for Senators be based in the amount of taxes each voter pays. In other words, those who pay more taxes get more votes. The voting rules for the lower House of Representatives remain the same
, ie one man one vote.
The Senate in the USA, as here in Australia, is a house of review. It cannot inaugurate legislation (which emanates from the lower house) but it can block it.

We (or at least the United States) has been there before. Do you recall the Missouri compromise?

Well, it was inaugurated by President Andrew Jackson's administration to placate the slave owning southern states after one of them (South Carolina) threatened to succeed in 1831. The goal of that agreement was to keep the number of slave states and the number of free states in the American union equal. If a new free state carved from their western frontier were admitted then likewise a new slave state had to be accepted to balance that up.

Why was maintaining that balance so important? Because under their constitution each state (then as now) had the same number of senators to represent it. Furthermore, senators were in those days appointed by state governments, not elected by the public as they are now. It meant that there were equal numbers of senators permanently in place representing the slave and free states. Under the rules of the US Senate any bill in which there are an equal number of yes and no votes in ruled to be in the negative; it has not passed.

It was in other words an institutionalised filibuster designed to ensure that the interests of the slave owning plantocracy were protected from the tender mercies of the northern abolitionists.

One might argue that you cannot compare modern multi-billionaire businessmen with the slave owning Dixie planters of yore. Well, you can! For throughout much of the first half of the 19th century it was exports of plantation crops like cotton and tobacco that earned the United States the lion's share of its foreign exchange - thereby helping to keep the young republic solvent.

I reject your view that the Senate ought be elected on the basis of voter's incomes for the reason that I would have rejected the effects of the Missouri Compromise. It has all of the potential to corrupt American public life further just as empowering the southern plantocracy thus in days of yore did.
I waited a bit - but, must I be the only one to correct n'fails gross misunderstandings of the American political system? I, for one, would never venture to comment on Australian politics (of which I know squat)). But n'fails ignorance of US matters has never deterred him from commentary thereupon.

"The Senate in the USA, as here in Australia, is a house of review. It cannot inaugurate legislation . . ." You are guessing, n'fail, and you guessed wrong.

neverfail
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Re: we have been there already cass.

Post by neverfail » Sun Jan 06, 2019 6:14 pm

Jim the Moron wrote:
Sun Jan 06, 2019 10:08 am

"The Senate in the USA, as here in Australia, is a house of review. It cannot inaugurate legislation . . ." You are guessing, n'fail, and you guessed wrong.
Then why don't you enlighten me on this point?

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cassowary
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Re: we have been there already cass.

Post by cassowary » Sun Jan 06, 2019 9:14 pm

neverfail wrote:
Sat Jan 05, 2019 11:01 pm
Milo wrote:
Sat Jan 05, 2019 9:23 pm

Again it's how they do it in Singapore and the chickens of tyranny have yet to come home to roost, so Cass doesn't (want to) see the problem.

I figure this generation of Lees will be the last before Singapore slides into full-on corrupt dictatorship.
An illuminating observation Milo.

Singapore is still a young, rather cocksure, republic. It is yet to reap the whirlwind it has sown by a system apparently designed to ensure unrelenting economic growth instead of empowering ordinary members of the public.

Canada and Australia might grow more slowly: but I would wager my money on both outlasting Singapore.
You may well be right. But it won't be for the reasons you stated. Canada and Australia have natural resources while we have none. We are a small country surrounded by you know who. If anything, a less democratic government may be what the doctor recommends given the ethnic make up both within and without Singapore. You don't have a large you-know-who population in Australia and Canada.

In my book, I pointed out the case of Yugoslavia. Under both kings and strongman Tito, Yugoslavia remained united. There was peace despite many ethnic groups. But the moment there was democracy, civil war tore the country apart. That's because in a democracy, it pays for politicians to play identity politics. I see that happening in the US too.

Politician portray themselves as champion of their ethnic or religious group against real, exaggerated or imagined threats from the others. That's how they gain power. It is bad for the country but good for their election prospects. Remember, most politicians just want power, money and girls. That's their priority and not the good of the country.

A more democratic Singapore will unleash the demons of communal strife - just like in multi-ethnic Yugoslavia. Add in the ingredient of you-know-who within and without Singapore, a touchy lot prone to violence, we have a combustible situation.

Please don't get the idea that Singapore is not a democracy. It is, according to the Economist Intelligence Unit. We are classified a flawed democracy - just made it. Raising the standards will result in disaster.
The Imp :D

neverfail
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Re: we have been there already cass.

Post by neverfail » Sun Jan 06, 2019 10:23 pm

cassowary wrote:
Sun Jan 06, 2019 9:14 pm


You may well be right. But it won't be for the reasons you stated. Canada and Australia have natural resources while we have none. We are a small country surrounded by you know who. If anything, a less democratic government may be what the doctor recommends given the ethnic make up both within and without Singapore. You don't have a large you-know-who population in Australia and Canada.

In my book, I pointed out the case of Yugoslavia. Under both kings and strongman Tito, Yugoslavia remained united. There was peace despite many ethnic groups. But the moment there was democracy, civil war tore the country apart.
Marshall Josef Broz Tito was indeed an astute manager of his country's unity. A lesser person could not have done it. But bearing in mind that Yugoslavia broke up after his death, it is as much as conceding that an inherently fractious multi-ethnic state held together by the wisdom of but one statesman, is not sustainable. As soon as the great man is gone then the country convulsively, violently breaks up.

By the way, Yugoslavia did not even hold its first election until 1990: fully a decade after Tito's death in 1980 and only after years of nationalist agitation. By then it was too late to save the country. Especially rehensible was the rise and subsequent machinations of the Serbian dictator Slobodan Milošević. Other component republics remained loyal to the concept of a united Yugoslavia until finally driven to succession by Milošević .

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Breakup_of_Yugoslavia

One election does not constitute a democracy.

Perhaps if they had a functioning democracy right through the Tito years enough Yugoslavs of the differing ethnicity might have developed a strong enough sense of shared destiny; of equity in their country, for the Yugoslav federation to that survived the machinations of those who sought to divide it.
cassowary wrote:
Sun Jan 06, 2019 9:14 pm
Politician portray themselves as champion of their ethnic or religious group against real, exaggerated or imagined threats from the others.
Irresponsible, opportunistic turds (of whom I agree there are far too many in politics in our times) do that but real statesmen don't.

And No! I do not accept your (or your grandmother's) jaundiced smear that ALL politicians are in the game for the power, money and girls. Some are like that but not all. Modern democracy tends to elect an assorted mix of statesmen and turds and all of the varying gradations in between. We have had some venal types even in my country but luckily the most powerful have always been men and women

cassowary wrote:
Sun Jan 06, 2019 9:14 pm
A more democratic Singapore will unleash the demons of communal strife ...-
How do you know?
..................................................................................................

P.S. Cass, thanks for your post. It has brought back to my mind the undeniable fact that democracy works only in a country whose people are united by a shared sense of history and destiny. In the case of my own country that is luckily very strong.

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cassowary
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Re: we have been there already cass.

Post by cassowary » Mon Jan 07, 2019 2:19 am

neverfail wrote:
Sun Jan 06, 2019 10:23 pm
cassowary wrote:
Sun Jan 06, 2019 9:14 pm


You may well be right. But it won't be for the reasons you stated. Canada and Australia have natural resources while we have none. We are a small country surrounded by you know who. If anything, a less democratic government may be what the doctor recommends given the ethnic make up both within and without Singapore. You don't have a large you-know-who population in Australia and Canada.

In my book, I pointed out the case of Yugoslavia. Under both kings and strongman Tito, Yugoslavia remained united. There was peace despite many ethnic groups. But the moment there was democracy, civil war tore the country apart.
Marshall Josef Broz Tito was indeed an astute manager of his country's unity. A lesser person could not have done it. But bearing in mind that Yugoslavia broke up after his death, it is as much as conceding that an inherently fractious multi-ethnic state held together by the wisdom of but one statesman, is not sustainable. As soon as the great man is gone then the country convulsively, violently breaks up.

By the way, Yugoslavia did not even hold its first election until 1990: fully a decade after Tito's death in 1980 and only after years of nationalist agitation. By then it was too late to save the country. Especially rehensible was the rise and subsequent machinations of the Serbian dictator Slobodan Milošević. Other component republics remained loyal to the concept of a united Yugoslavia until finally driven to succession by Milošević .
All it took was one election to unleash the demons of communal strife that wrecked the county. You may have a blind spot, neverfail. I agree that democracy is the best form of government but you must not be blind to its flaws. Democracy does not work well in a multi ethnic population.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Breakup_of_Yugoslavia
One election does not constitute a democracy.

Perhaps if they had a functioning democracy right through the Tito years enough Yugoslavs of the differing ethnicity might have developed a strong enough sense of shared destiny; of equity in their country, for the Yugoslav federation to that survived the machinations of those who sought to divide it.
Then the breakup would have happened sooner.
cassowary wrote:
Sun Jan 06, 2019 9:14 pm
Politician portray themselves as champion of their ethnic or religious group against real, exaggerated or imagined threats from the others.
Irresponsible, opportunistic turds (of whom I agree there are far too many in politics in our times) do that but real statesmen don't.
I think the responsible politicians are in the minority. This is especially so in Third World countries.
And No! I do not accept your (or your grandmother's) jaundiced smear that ALL politicians are in the game for the power, money and girls.


Actually, I agree with you. Not all are like that. But most are.
cassowary wrote:
Sun Jan 06, 2019 9:14 pm
A more democratic Singapore will unleash the demons of communal strife ...-
How do you know?
Because I live here. I know that the racial harmony is only superficial. Only a powerful leader can keep it in check. A high standard democracy such as your country will not be able to produce such a leader. As I said before, you must not be blind to democracy's flaws. It really does not work well in a multi ethnic country.
..................................................................................................
P.S. Cass, thanks for your post. It has brought back to my mind the undeniable fact that democracy works only in a country whose people are united by a shared sense of history and destiny. In the case of my own country that is luckily very strong.
After going through all that, you have finally come round to my thinking. This is a flaw in democracy. That is why we have to be careful in Singapore not to grant too much freedom of expression when it comes to race and religion.
The Imp :D

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Sertorio
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Re: we have been there already cass.

Post by Sertorio » Mon Jan 07, 2019 3:59 am

cassowary wrote:
Mon Jan 07, 2019 2:19 am
As I said before, you must not be blind to democracy's flaws. It really does not work well in a multi ethnic country.
Democracy works fine in Switzerland, and they speak four different languages...

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SteveFoerster
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Re: we have been there already cass.

Post by SteveFoerster » Mon Jan 07, 2019 8:35 am

neverfail wrote:
Sun Jan 06, 2019 6:14 pm
Jim the Moron wrote:
Sun Jan 06, 2019 10:08 am

"The Senate in the USA, as here in Australia, is a house of review. It cannot inaugurate legislation . . ." You are guessing, n'fail, and you guessed wrong.
Then why don't you enlighten me on this point?
The U.S. Senate is not a house of review. It can initiate legislation on any matter other than bills of revenue. Those are the only ones that must originate in the House of Representatives. And even with those bills often change significantly due to negotiations between the leaders of the two houses, because the House can pass one version and the Senate another, leading to what's called a "reconciliation committee".

There's also a requirement for the U.S. Senate to "advise and consent" on high level executive appointments, like Cabinet members and federal judges and Supreme Court justices, but that's not legislation.
Writer, technologist, educator, gadfly.
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neverfail
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Re: we have been there already cass.

Post by neverfail » Mon Jan 07, 2019 12:26 pm

SteveFoerster wrote:
Mon Jan 07, 2019 8:35 am

The U.S. Senate is not a house of review. It can initiate legislation on any matter other than bills of revenue. Those are the only ones that must originate in the House of Representatives. And even with those bills often change significantly due to negotiations between the leaders of the two houses, because the House can pass one version and the Senate another, leading to what's called a "reconciliation committee".

There's also a requirement for the U.S. Senate to "advise and consent" on high level executive appointments, like Cabinet members and federal judges and Supreme Court justices, but that's not legislation.
Thanks Steve. it seems that I stand corrected and am better off as a consequence.

Jim the Moron: why couldn't you have respectfully informed me like that instead of slagging me for my misconception?.
................................................................................................

it seems that the US Senate has a greater diversity of powers than I previously imagined. All the more reason why it should continue to be elected by a popular vote and not, as Cassowary suggests, by a privileged elite constituency of multi-millionaire (and billionaire) businessmen.

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