I had a crazy idea to write about some of the various political systems in this wonderful little world of ours, and to speculate what the future might hold. So, I did what any good writer would do and started some research. My quest seemed simple enough; to identify the political systems in a few of the larger countries. Well, let me tell you, I worked my way through Wikipedia and a few other sites and my head started to spin.
Here are a couple of examples of what I came across. The United States is a Presidential Federal Republic. I knew we operated as a Republic. People often get that confused actually, and think the United States is a Democracy, but it is indeed a Republic. I guess someone felt Republic wasn’t specific enough, so the “Presidential Federal” got tacked onto it. Easy enough I supposed, even though I was hoping for a single word definition.
I figured I’d check out our neighbors. Wikipedia defined Canada as a Constitutional Monarchy operating in the framework of a parliamentary government with strong democratic traditions. What?!? Yeah, I’m sure that’s exactly what you thought it was too. So how about Mexico: A federal presidential representative democratic republic. Huh?!? How about our friends across the ocean? The United Kingdom is a constitutional monarchy and a parliamentary democracy. Hmm. Australia was the last country I looked up before crawling up into a ball and crying about the incomprehensibility of it all. Turns out Australia is simply a federal constitutional monarchy under a parliamentary democracy. Please wait a moment while I enter the fetal position and commence in a good manly tantrum of tears and frustration.
Good, shake it off. We good here? Just pretend like you didn’t see that.
I have now almost completely lost sight of where I was headed with this. It seems I have failed miserably at what I suspected was a simple task. It’s no wonder the people in this world can’t figure out what our governments are up to, we can’t even define the basics of how they operate.
Ah, here we go. During my search I stumbled across a YouTube video. I hadn’t planned on using a video in this post, but words are failing me, so let’s take a look.
Phew, so much easier to understand. Sure it’s oversimplified and obviously U.S. centric, but it’s a little clearer now than when I started this quest. According to the simplified definitions, the United States and Mexico are republics and the United Kingdom, Canada, and Australia are monarchies but operationally leaning toward oligarchies. I’m starting to feel a little better. (If you can’t watch the video because you are at work, don’t worry, you can just watch it when you get home. Basically it identified the following political systems: Monarchy, Oligarchy, Democracy, Republic, and Anarchy. It then said that Ologarchy and Repubilc are the only two viable systems.)
Now, if I can get this train wreck moving again, I had hoped to discuss this: What political system comes next? I just caught the tail end of some interesting theories on CoastToCoastAM the other day. It gave me pause to ponder the topic. I missed a good part of it though, so I had to come up with my own theories.
Our current US government is seeing some of the chinks in the armor of our Republic as seen at the tail end of the video in the example of Rome. Big corporations and powerful individuals wield great influence over our current political leaders. Election to political office now requires a massive amount of money, more so now than at any time in history. This money must be raised by political contributions, and of course many high dollar donations come from big corporations, either directly or indirectly. I hope we don’t end up going the way of the Roman Empire.
Of course, I’m not real good with politics, so my thoughts drift to people. I wonder if the level of enlightenment of the people would have an influence on the type of political system. For instance, what if instead of electing people from a two party system, we were enlightened enough to choose from all qualified candidates. Get rid of this political party business altogether, and assemble all the individuals that would do what is best for this country and its people. Then we could choose from this group the one person who would do the very best. This would mean that we, as individuals, would need access to good quality information about each nominee, and understand their views on topics that were important to us. We would also have to completely disregard any slander and negative politicking. In fact, the candidates chosen would also be enlightened enough to understand that a positive outlook and a truthful campaign would be the only way to get elected.
This would likely still be a republic, but it would be a completely different way of approaching politics, and would be one I would enjoy immensely compared to the politics of today.
Then what if it went a step further, and we were all completely enlightened positive individuals, and the right person for any given political office just knew they were right, and thus elected themselves. Seems pretty farfetched, but can you imagine a world like this?
Ok, let’s take it one step further. A world where everyone was so enlightened, so positive, so good and kind, that no government was needed. Individuals did what was right for themselves, followed the golden rule, and understood their place in society and their impact on others. Everyone is in harmony with one another. Companies exist, but are free from greed and corruption. They operate on a higher plane, a higher morality. In pure definition, this would be an anarchy, yet if each individual participated in a manner that was beneficial to himself and also beneficial to the whole, then maybe it could be possible. Never in our current greed filled world, but maybe someday… someday.
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Photo by kretyen.