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History Analysis / DemocracyIsFlawed

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Remember that democracy as we identify and live it today, not only in the kind of government (representative democracy) but also the democratic society, is [[NewerThanTheyThink a very recent development]] in the history of mankind. A modern democracy is expected to have universal suffrage for every adult, male and female, equal rights for individuals of all races and beliefs, protections for minorities, and a society of freedom of speech and expression. This idea of democracy would be regarded as "crazy talk" in the imagination of not only the ancients, but also the Founding Fathers, the Whigs and Tories of the 1700s and to some extent, the Jacobins of the French Revolution. Universal suffrage only became a reality towards the end of the 19th Century, female suffrage would achieve its centennial in the second decade of the 21st Century in the Anglophone world, while France only gave women the vote in 1944! Switzerland was even later, in ''1971''.

In the ancient world, Athens and the Roman Republic believed that the vote should be restricted to elite property owners, that citizenship is not a right but a privilege, and that it was okay for a class of people to serve as chattel slaves without any rights or voice in the government. Features that we identify as pillars of democratic society, such as civil codes, UsefulNotes/TheCommonLaw, and religious tolerance were historically achieved by Kings and Emperors such as UsefulNotes/CyrusTheGreat, UsefulNotes/HenryTheSecond, and UsefulNotes/NapoleonBonaparte. As much as the world has accepted GoodRepublicEvilEmpire as a given, the historical record has not always been as clear on that front as it should have been, since the representative elites of old republics were always wary of expanding the franchise, which allowed kings and emperors to ride to power on a surge of populism. This SelfFulfillingProphecy meant that the word "democracy" was often used to signify mob rule, and elites often believed that mobs were easily swayed by dictatorship. Their refusal to extend the franchise to these groups [[SuspiciouslySpecificDenial had no role]] [[NeverMyFault in creating these problems at all]]. As noted by R. R. Palmer, it isn't until the latter half of UsefulNotes/TheEnlightenment that you would find positive invocations of democracy, and the fact that it was made by the likes of UsefulNotes/MaximilienRobespierre only proves how radical and fringe these ideas were regarded back then.

The real reason democracies are flawed, as you might guess, is that it has to constantly renew and reform itself in order to survive. Kingdoms and empires maintain power by means of marriage and lines of succession, which, barring the occasional SuccessionCrisis, is easier to maintain on the whole than democracies. Democracies survive on the strength of its institutions and the power of its values and ideology, and the responsibility of each generation to maintain and build on these preexisting institutions and values while meeting new demands.

to:

Remember that democracy as we identify and live it today, not only in the kind of government (representative democracy) but also the democratic society, is [[NewerThanTheyThink a very recent development]] in the history of mankind. A modern democracy is expected to have universal suffrage for every adult, male and female, equal rights for individuals of all races and beliefs, protections for minorities, and a society of freedom of speech and expression. This idea of democracy would be regarded as "crazy talk" in the imagination of not only the ancients, but also the Founding Fathers, the Whigs and Tories of the 1700s 1700s, and to some extent, the Jacobins of the French Revolution. Universal suffrage only became a reality towards the end of the 19th Century, century, female suffrage would achieve its centennial in the second decade of the 21st Century century in the Anglophone world, while France only gave women the vote in 1944! Switzerland was even later, in ''1971''.

In the ancient world, Athens and the Roman Republic believed that the vote should be restricted to elite property owners, that citizenship is not was a right but privilege rather than a privilege, right, and that it was okay for a class of people to serve as chattel slaves without any with no rights or voice in the government. Features that we identify as pillars of democratic society, such as civil codes, UsefulNotes/TheCommonLaw, and religious tolerance were came historically achieved by from Kings and Emperors such as UsefulNotes/CyrusTheGreat, UsefulNotes/HenryTheSecond, and UsefulNotes/NapoleonBonaparte. As much as the world has accepted GoodRepublicEvilEmpire as a given, the historical record has not always been as clear on that front as it should have been, since the representative elites of old republics were always wary of expanding the franchise, which allowed kings and emperors to ride to power on a surge of populism. This SelfFulfillingProphecy meant that the word "democracy" was often used to signify mob rule, and elites often believed that mobs were easily dictatorship swayed by dictatorship.mobs easily. Their refusal to extend the franchise to these groups [[SuspiciouslySpecificDenial had no role]] [[NeverMyFault in creating these problems at all]]. As noted by R. R. Palmer, it isn't until the latter half of UsefulNotes/TheEnlightenment that you would find positive invocations of democracy, and the fact that it was made by the likes of UsefulNotes/MaximilienRobespierre made them only proves how radical and fringe these ideas were regarded back then.

then.

The real reason democracies are flawed, as you might guess, is that it has to every democratic regime must constantly renew and reform itself in order to survive. Kingdoms and empires maintain power by means of marriage and lines of succession, which, barring the occasional SuccessionCrisis, is easier to maintain on the whole than democracies. Democracies survive on the strength of its their institutions and the power of its their values and ideology, and the responsibility of each generation to maintain and build on these preexisting institutions and values while meeting new demands.demands. A democratic person would likely distinguish the superficial ease of this sort of 'dictatorship' from the 'righteousness' of democracy.


You might notice that the opposite of DemocracyIsBad is DemocracyIsFlawed rather than good. From this you might guess that Democracy on the whole is judged on a different scale than kingdoms, empires, and dictatorships. Saying that kingdoms and empires are bad or flawed won't raise any eyebrows. If it was flawed, it was because there was a bad king and we need to wait for TheGoodKing. Indeed, monarchists often note that revolutions only happen against weak rulers (Charles I, Louis XVI, Nicholas II) rather than strong rulers, which means that TheKingdom as a system is not invalid except for the weak rulers who potentially come to power. In the case of a democracy, a bad elected official is, by this light, a comment on the entire system, since it proves that A) a particular portion of the electorate chose wrongly or B) they were fooled by the candidate into thinking he was more competent or benevolent than he actually is. Either way, the people look bad in a way that subjects of a kingdom do not.

to:

You might notice that the opposite of DemocracyIsBad is DemocracyIsFlawed rather than good. From this you might guess that Democracy on the whole is judged on a different scale than kingdoms, empires, and dictatorships. Saying that kingdoms and empires are bad or flawed won't raise any eyebrows. If it was flawed, it was because there was a bad king and we need to wait for TheGoodKing. Indeed, monarchists often note that revolutions only happen against weak rulers (Charles I, Louis XVI, Nicholas II) rather than strong rulers, which means that TheKingdom the kingdom as a system is not invalid except for the weak rulers who potentially come to power. In the case of a democracy, a bad elected official is, by this light, a comment on the entire system, since it proves that A) a particular portion of the electorate chose wrongly or B) they were fooled by the candidate into thinking he was more competent or benevolent than he actually is. Either way, the people look bad in a way that subjects of a kingdom do not.


You might notice that the opposite of DemocracyIsBad is DemocracyIsFlawed rather than good. From this you might guess that Democracy on the whole is judged on a different scale than kingdoms, empires and dictatorships. Saying that kingdoms and empires are bad or flawed won't raise any eyebrows. If it was flawed it was because there was a bad king and we need to wait for TheGoodKing. Indeed monarchists often note that revolutions only happen against weak rulers (Charles I, Louis XVI, Nicholas II) rather than strong rulers, which means that TheKingdom as a system is not invalid except for the weak rulers who potentially come to power. In the case of a democracy, a bad elected official is, by this light, a comment on the entire system, since it proves that A) a particular portion of the electorate chose wrongly or B) they ere fooled by the candidate into being more competent or benevolent then he was. Either way, the people look bad in a way that subjects of a kingdom do not.

Democracy as such is always on trial for its effectiveness and even today, it is judged on a perceived closeness or distance from a certain standard of perfection, from both the right and the left. From this you can derive the idea that democracy has aspects of it that are tied to a kind of utopian ideal for society. And in a certain way it is.

Remember that democracy as we identify and live it today, not only in the kind of government (representative democracy) but also the democratic society, is [[NewerThanTheyThink a very recent development]] in the history of mankind. A modern democracy is expected to have universal suffrage for every adult, male and female, equal rights for individuals of all races and beliefs, protections for minorities and a society of freedom of speech and expression. This idea of democracy would be regarded as "crazy talk" in the imagination of not only the ancients but also the Founding Fathers, the Whigs and Tories of the 1700s and to some extent, the Jacobins of the French Revolution. Universal suffrage only became a reality towards the end of the 19th Century, female suffrage would achieve its centennial in the second decade of the 21st Century in the Anglophone world, while France only gave women the vote in 1944! Switzerland was even later, in ''1971''.

In the ancient world, Athens and the Roman Republic believed that the vote should be restricted to elite property owners, that citizenship is not a right but a privilege, and that it was okay for a class of people to serve as chattel slaves without any rights or voice in the government. Features that we identify as pillars of democratic society, such as civil codes, UsefulNotes/TheCommonLaw and religious tolerance were historically achieved by Kings and Emperors such as UsefulNotes/CyrusTheGreat, UsefulNotes/HenryTheSecond and UsefulNotes/NapoleonBonaparte. As much as the world has accepted GoodRepublicEvilEmpire as a given, the historical record has not always been as clear on that front as it should have been, since the representative elites of old republics were always jealous of expanding the franchise, which allowed kings and emperors to ride to power on a surge of populism. This SelfFulfillingProphecy meant that the word "democracy" was often used to signify mob rule, and elites often believed that mobs were easily swayed by dictatorship. Their refusal to extend the franchise to these groups [[SuspiciouslySpecificDenial had no role]] [[NeverMyFault in creating these problems at all]]. As noted by R. R. Palmer, it isn't until the latter half of UsefulNotes/TheEnlightenment that you would find positive invocations of democracy, and the fact that it was made by the likes of UsefulNotes/MaximilienRobespierre only proves how radical and fringe these ideas were regarded back then.

The real reason democracies are flawed, as you might guess, is that it has to constantly renew and reform itself in order to survive. Kingdoms and empires maintain power by means of marriage and lines of succession, which barring the occasional SuccessionCrisis is easier to maintain on the whole than democracies. Democracies survive on the strength of its institutions and the power of its values and ideology, and the responsibility of each generation to maintain and build on these preexisting institutions and values while meeting new demands.

to:

You might notice that the opposite of DemocracyIsBad is DemocracyIsFlawed rather than good. From this you might guess that Democracy on the whole is judged on a different scale than kingdoms, empires empires, and dictatorships. Saying that kingdoms and empires are bad or flawed won't raise any eyebrows. If it was flawed flawed, it was because there was a bad king and we need to wait for TheGoodKing. Indeed Indeed, monarchists often note that revolutions only happen against weak rulers (Charles I, Louis XVI, Nicholas II) rather than strong rulers, which means that TheKingdom as a system is not invalid except for the weak rulers who potentially come to power. In the case of a democracy, a bad elected official is, by this light, a comment on the entire system, since it proves that A) a particular portion of the electorate chose wrongly or B) they ere were fooled by the candidate into being thinking he was more competent or benevolent then than he was.actually is. Either way, the people look bad in a way that subjects of a kingdom do not.

Democracy as such is always on trial for its effectiveness effectiveness, and even today, it is judged on a perceived closeness or distance from a certain standard of perfection, from both the right and the left. From this you can derive the idea that democracy has aspects of it that are tied to a kind of utopian ideal for society. And in a certain way way, it is.

Remember that democracy as we identify and live it today, not only in the kind of government (representative democracy) but also the democratic society, is [[NewerThanTheyThink a very recent development]] in the history of mankind. A modern democracy is expected to have universal suffrage for every adult, male and female, equal rights for individuals of all races and beliefs, protections for minorities minorities, and a society of freedom of speech and expression. This idea of democracy would be regarded as "crazy talk" in the imagination of not only the ancients ancients, but also the Founding Fathers, the Whigs and Tories of the 1700s and to some extent, the Jacobins of the French Revolution. Universal suffrage only became a reality towards the end of the 19th Century, female suffrage would achieve its centennial in the second decade of the 21st Century in the Anglophone world, while France only gave women the vote in 1944! Switzerland was even later, in ''1971''.

In the ancient world, Athens and the Roman Republic believed that the vote should be restricted to elite property owners, that citizenship is not a right but a privilege, and that it was okay for a class of people to serve as chattel slaves without any rights or voice in the government. Features that we identify as pillars of democratic society, such as civil codes, UsefulNotes/TheCommonLaw UsefulNotes/TheCommonLaw, and religious tolerance were historically achieved by Kings and Emperors such as UsefulNotes/CyrusTheGreat, UsefulNotes/HenryTheSecond UsefulNotes/HenryTheSecond, and UsefulNotes/NapoleonBonaparte. As much as the world has accepted GoodRepublicEvilEmpire as a given, the historical record has not always been as clear on that front as it should have been, since the representative elites of old republics were always jealous wary of expanding the franchise, which allowed kings and emperors to ride to power on a surge of populism. This SelfFulfillingProphecy meant that the word "democracy" was often used to signify mob rule, and elites often believed that mobs were easily swayed by dictatorship. Their refusal to extend the franchise to these groups [[SuspiciouslySpecificDenial had no role]] [[NeverMyFault in creating these problems at all]]. As noted by R. R. Palmer, it isn't until the latter half of UsefulNotes/TheEnlightenment that you would find positive invocations of democracy, and the fact that it was made by the likes of UsefulNotes/MaximilienRobespierre only proves how radical and fringe these ideas were regarded back then.

The real reason democracies are flawed, as you might guess, is that it has to constantly renew and reform itself in order to survive. Kingdoms and empires maintain power by means of marriage and lines of succession, which which, barring the occasional SuccessionCrisis SuccessionCrisis, is easier to maintain on the whole than democracies. Democracies survive on the strength of its institutions and the power of its values and ideology, and the responsibility of each generation to maintain and build on these preexisting institutions and values while meeting new demands.


The real reason democracies are flawed, as you might guess, is that it has to constantly renew and reform itself in order to survive. Kingdoms and empires maintain power by means of marriage and lines of succession, which barring the occasional SuccessionCrisis is easier to maintain on the whole than democracies. Democracies survive on the strength of its institutions and the power of its values and ideology, and the responsibility of each generation to maintain and build on these preexisting institutions and values while meeting new demands.

to:

The real reason democracies are flawed, as you might guess, is that it has to constantly renew and reform itself in order to survive. Kingdoms and empires maintain power by means of marriage and lines of succession, which barring the occasional SuccessionCrisis is easier to maintain on the whole than democracies. Democracies survive on the strength of its institutions and the power of its values and ideology, and the responsibility of each generation to maintain and build on these preexisting institutions and values while meeting new demands.demands.
----


You might notice that the opposite of DemocracyIsBad is DemocracyIsFlawed rather than good. From this you might guess that Democracy on the whole is judged on a different scale than Kingdoms, Empires and Dictatorships. Saying that Kingdoms and Empires are bad or flawed won't raise any eyebrows. If it was flawed it was because there was a bad king and we need to wait for TheGoodKing. Indeed monarchists often note that revolutions only happen against weak rulers (Charles I, Louis XVI, Nicholas II) rather than strong rulers, which means that TheKingdom as a system is not invalid except for the weak rulers who potentially come to power. In the case of a democracy, a bad elected official is, by this light, a comment on the entire system, since it proves that A) A particular portion of the electorate chose wrongly or B) Were fooled by the Candidate into being more competent or benevolent then he was. Either way, the people look bad in a way that subjects of a Kingdom do not.

Democracy as such is always on trial for its effectiveness and even today, it is judged on a percieved closeness or distance from a certain standard of perfection, from both the right and the left. From this you can derive the idea that democracy has aspects of it that are tied to a kind of utopian ideal for society. And in a certain way it is.

Remember that democracy as we identity and live it today, not only in the kind of government (representative democracy) but also the democratic society, is [[NewerThanTheyThink a very recent development]] in the history of mankind. A modern democracy is expected to have universal suffrage for every adult, male and female, equal rights for individuals of all races and beliefs, protections for minorities and a society of freedom of speech and expression. This idea of democracy would be regarded as "crazy talk" in the imagination of not only the ancients but also the Founding Fathers, the Whigs and Tories of the 1700s and to some extent, the Jacobins of the French Revolution. Universal suffrage only became a reality towards the end of the 19th Century, female suffrage would achieve its centennial in the second decade of the 21st Century in the Anglophone, while France only gave women the vote in the year of 1944!

In the ancient world, Athens and the Roman Republic believed that the vote should be restricted to elite property owners, that citizenship is not a right but a privilege, and that it was okay for a class of people to serve as chattel slaves without any rights or voice in the government. Features that we identify as pillars of democratic society, such as civil codes, UsefulNotes/TheCommonLaw, religious tolerance were historically achieved by Kings and Emperors such as UsefulNotes/CyrusTheGreat, UsefulNotes/HenryTheSecond and UsefulNotes/NapoleonBonaparte. As much as the world has accepted GoodRepublicEvilEmpire as a given, the historical record has not always been as clear on that front as it should have been, since the representative elites of old republics were always jealous of expanding the franchise, which allowed Kings and Emperors to ride to power on a surge of populism. This SelfFulfillingProphecy meant that the word "democracy" was often used to signify mob rule, and elites often believed that mobs were easily swayed by dictatorship. Their refusal to extend franchise to these groups [[SuspiciouslySpecificDenial had no role]] [[NeverMyFault in creating these problems at all]]. As noted by R. R. Palmer, it isn't until the latter half of UsefulNotes/TheEnlightenment that you would find positive invocations of democracy, and the fact that it was made by the likes of UsefulNotes/MaximilienRobespierre only proves how radical and fringe these ideas were regarded back then.

The real reason democracies are flawed, as you might guess, is that it has to constantly renew and reform itself in order to survive. Kingdoms and Empires maintain power by means of marriage and lines of succession, which barring the occassional SuccessionCrisis is easier to maintain on the whole than democracies. Democracies survive on the strength of its institutions and the power of its values and ideology, and the responsibility of each generation to maintain and build on these pre-existing institutions and values while meeting new demands.

to:

You might notice that the opposite of DemocracyIsBad is DemocracyIsFlawed rather than good. From this you might guess that Democracy on the whole is judged on a different scale than Kingdoms, Empires kingdoms, empires and Dictatorships. dictatorships. Saying that Kingdoms kingdoms and Empires empires are bad or flawed won't raise any eyebrows. If it was flawed it was because there was a bad king and we need to wait for TheGoodKing. Indeed monarchists often note that revolutions only happen against weak rulers (Charles I, Louis XVI, Nicholas II) rather than strong rulers, which means that TheKingdom as a system is not invalid except for the weak rulers who potentially come to power. In the case of a democracy, a bad elected official is, by this light, a comment on the entire system, since it proves that A) A a particular portion of the electorate chose wrongly or B) Were they ere fooled by the Candidate candidate into being more competent or benevolent then he was. Either way, the people look bad in a way that subjects of a Kingdom kingdom do not.

Democracy as such is always on trial for its effectiveness and even today, it is judged on a percieved perceived closeness or distance from a certain standard of perfection, from both the right and the left. From this you can derive the idea that democracy has aspects of it that are tied to a kind of utopian ideal for society. And in a certain way it is.

Remember that democracy as we identity identify and live it today, not only in the kind of government (representative democracy) but also the democratic society, is [[NewerThanTheyThink a very recent development]] in the history of mankind. A modern democracy is expected to have universal suffrage for every adult, male and female, equal rights for individuals of all races and beliefs, protections for minorities and a society of freedom of speech and expression. This idea of democracy would be regarded as "crazy talk" in the imagination of not only the ancients but also the Founding Fathers, the Whigs and Tories of the 1700s and to some extent, the Jacobins of the French Revolution. Universal suffrage only became a reality towards the end of the 19th Century, female suffrage would achieve its centennial in the second decade of the 21st Century in the Anglophone, Anglophone world, while France only gave women the vote in the year of 1944!

1944! Switzerland was even later, in ''1971''.

In the ancient world, Athens and the Roman Republic believed that the vote should be restricted to elite property owners, that citizenship is not a right but a privilege, and that it was okay for a class of people to serve as chattel slaves without any rights or voice in the government. Features that we identify as pillars of democratic society, such as civil codes, UsefulNotes/TheCommonLaw, UsefulNotes/TheCommonLaw and religious tolerance were historically achieved by Kings and Emperors such as UsefulNotes/CyrusTheGreat, UsefulNotes/HenryTheSecond and UsefulNotes/NapoleonBonaparte. As much as the world has accepted GoodRepublicEvilEmpire as a given, the historical record has not always been as clear on that front as it should have been, since the representative elites of old republics were always jealous of expanding the franchise, which allowed Kings kings and Emperors emperors to ride to power on a surge of populism. This SelfFulfillingProphecy meant that the word "democracy" was often used to signify mob rule, and elites often believed that mobs were easily swayed by dictatorship. Their refusal to extend the franchise to these groups [[SuspiciouslySpecificDenial had no role]] [[NeverMyFault in creating these problems at all]]. As noted by R. R. Palmer, it isn't until the latter half of UsefulNotes/TheEnlightenment that you would find positive invocations of democracy, and the fact that it was made by the likes of UsefulNotes/MaximilienRobespierre only proves how radical and fringe these ideas were regarded back then.

The real reason democracies are flawed, as you might guess, is that it has to constantly renew and reform itself in order to survive. Kingdoms and Empires empires maintain power by means of marriage and lines of succession, which barring the occassional occasional SuccessionCrisis is easier to maintain on the whole than democracies. Democracies survive on the strength of its institutions and the power of its values and ideology, and the responsibility of each generation to maintain and build on these pre-existing preexisting institutions and values while meeting new demands.


You might notice that the opposite of DemocracyIsBad is DemocracyIsFlawed rather than good? From this you might guess that Democracy on the whole is judged on a different scale than Kingdoms, Empires and Dictatorships. Saying that Kingdoms and Empires are bad or flawed won't raise any eyebrows. If it was flawed it was because there was a bad king and we need to wait for TheGoodKing. Indeed monarchists often note that revolutions only happen against weak rulers (Charles I, Louis XVI, Nicholas II) rather than strong rulers, which means that TheKingdom as a system is not invalid except for the weak rulers who potentially come to power. In the case of a democracy, a bad elected official is, by this light, a comment on the entire system, since it proves that A) A particular portion of the electorate chose wrongly or B) Were fooled by the Candidate into being more competent or benevolent then he was. Either way, the people look bad in a way that subjects of a Kingdom do not.

to:

You might notice that the opposite of DemocracyIsBad is DemocracyIsFlawed rather than good? good. From this you might guess that Democracy on the whole is judged on a different scale than Kingdoms, Empires and Dictatorships. Saying that Kingdoms and Empires are bad or flawed won't raise any eyebrows. If it was flawed it was because there was a bad king and we need to wait for TheGoodKing. Indeed monarchists often note that revolutions only happen against weak rulers (Charles I, Louis XVI, Nicholas II) rather than strong rulers, which means that TheKingdom as a system is not invalid except for the weak rulers who potentially come to power. In the case of a democracy, a bad elected official is, by this light, a comment on the entire system, since it proves that A) A particular portion of the electorate chose wrongly or B) Were fooled by the Candidate into being more competent or benevolent then he was. Either way, the people look bad in a way that subjects of a Kingdom do not.

Added DiffLines:

You might notice that the opposite of DemocracyIsBad is DemocracyIsFlawed rather than good? From this you might guess that Democracy on the whole is judged on a different scale than Kingdoms, Empires and Dictatorships. Saying that Kingdoms and Empires are bad or flawed won't raise any eyebrows. If it was flawed it was because there was a bad king and we need to wait for TheGoodKing. Indeed monarchists often note that revolutions only happen against weak rulers (Charles I, Louis XVI, Nicholas II) rather than strong rulers, which means that TheKingdom as a system is not invalid except for the weak rulers who potentially come to power. In the case of a democracy, a bad elected official is, by this light, a comment on the entire system, since it proves that A) A particular portion of the electorate chose wrongly or B) Were fooled by the Candidate into being more competent or benevolent then he was. Either way, the people look bad in a way that subjects of a Kingdom do not.

Democracy as such is always on trial for its effectiveness and even today, it is judged on a percieved closeness or distance from a certain standard of perfection, from both the right and the left. From this you can derive the idea that democracy has aspects of it that are tied to a kind of utopian ideal for society. And in a certain way it is.

Remember that democracy as we identity and live it today, not only in the kind of government (representative democracy) but also the democratic society, is [[NewerThanTheyThink a very recent development]] in the history of mankind. A modern democracy is expected to have universal suffrage for every adult, male and female, equal rights for individuals of all races and beliefs, protections for minorities and a society of freedom of speech and expression. This idea of democracy would be regarded as "crazy talk" in the imagination of not only the ancients but also the Founding Fathers, the Whigs and Tories of the 1700s and to some extent, the Jacobins of the French Revolution. Universal suffrage only became a reality towards the end of the 19th Century, female suffrage would achieve its centennial in the second decade of the 21st Century in the Anglophone, while France only gave women the vote in the year of 1944!

In the ancient world, Athens and the Roman Republic believed that the vote should be restricted to elite property owners, that citizenship is not a right but a privilege, and that it was okay for a class of people to serve as chattel slaves without any rights or voice in the government. Features that we identify as pillars of democratic society, such as civil codes, UsefulNotes/TheCommonLaw, religious tolerance were historically achieved by Kings and Emperors such as UsefulNotes/CyrusTheGreat, UsefulNotes/HenryTheSecond and UsefulNotes/NapoleonBonaparte. As much as the world has accepted GoodRepublicEvilEmpire as a given, the historical record has not always been as clear on that front as it should have been, since the representative elites of old republics were always jealous of expanding the franchise, which allowed Kings and Emperors to ride to power on a surge of populism. This SelfFulfillingProphecy meant that the word "democracy" was often used to signify mob rule, and elites often believed that mobs were easily swayed by dictatorship. Their refusal to extend franchise to these groups [[SuspiciouslySpecificDenial had no role]] [[NeverMyFault in creating these problems at all]]. As noted by R. R. Palmer, it isn't until the latter half of UsefulNotes/TheEnlightenment that you would find positive invocations of democracy, and the fact that it was made by the likes of UsefulNotes/MaximilienRobespierre only proves how radical and fringe these ideas were regarded back then.

The real reason democracies are flawed, as you might guess, is that it has to constantly renew and reform itself in order to survive. Kingdoms and Empires maintain power by means of marriage and lines of succession, which barring the occassional SuccessionCrisis is easier to maintain on the whole than democracies. Democracies survive on the strength of its institutions and the power of its values and ideology, and the responsibility of each generation to maintain and build on these pre-existing institutions and values while meeting new demands.

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