mordicai caeli (mordicai) wrote,
mordicai caeli
mordicai

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you know, i've sort of slowly caught myself up in this wave of admiration for samurai. i should explain that by samurai i don't mean actually historical samurai, but rather the kind of archetype of what a samurai could be, should be; a representative figure rather than a historical one. really, thinking about government always leads me down a similar road, so i shouldn't be surprised. i mean, i have a hard time considering a governmental system that doesn't have an aristocracy. how fluid a definition for aristocracy you have might lead to a semantic argument, but lets assume that again, i mean the word as a stand-in for "ruling elite." i certainly think true direct democracy would be a stunning failure; i have never seen anything to incline me to the opinion that as a group humans are capable of self government. rather, i've seen quite the contrary. this leads to a great deal of disenfranchisement with democracy over-all, as well as corporations (a more truer democratic model, i don't know of). clearly a hereditary system is deeply flawed as well, despite the stop-gap measures of training & duty, you still are essentially electing at random. a lot of systems have been smart variations of these themes- the roman heredity-by-adoption system is somewhat admirable, & the american system of republic is conceptually a good kludge of pragmatics with idealism. still...not complete systems, instead, deeply flawed. america is really a hereditary plutocracy, existing with a mandate from the masses. i think clipping the strings of that plutocracy with "absurd" inheritance taxing is probably a good idea, but also sort of opens the door to corporate neofeudalism. i don't have a solution for corporations, yet. man, those are some tricky darwinian constructs. i think there is a good chance that interconnection of information may spell their eventual downfall, but we'll see.

what it comes down to is selection of aristocracy, i figure. which is difficult to actually consider, because the temptation is there to just wave a magic stick in the air. "choose on merit!" yeah, that is a fantastic idea, except for being a totally meaningless statement. i would like a system that developed an understanding of the attributes of government, but even then i would mistrust any test of them. aasimov's psychohistory is a mcguffin, & an alluring one, but you can't just push the buck to it. well, you can, if you are writing a book. i think about psychohistory sometimes; it is essentially the government style in a lot of distopian novels too, right? i like it, but that is the allure of a macguffin; it solves your problem in one fell swoop. the best compromise i could come up with? ideology. ruthless ideology encodes whatever values you choose in your meme-government, allowing for diversity (a must in an ecosystem, especially an intellectual one) while establishing loyalty & commonality. & the exemplars of that ideology, those who sacrifice personal & individual liberty for it, rise to govern. this is sort of the system exposed by a lot of religions, & i got to tell you, maybe secular religion needs to have its day on the stage of the state. the french revolution had a lot of good things to say in that direction.
Tags: government, ideology, samurai
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