Dan seems to be arguing that the process – in all of its heterogeneous glory – may be thoroughly legitimate, but still remain vulnerable to abuse and misuse, including by a known demagogue who plays upon a common type of incapacitating civic ignorance that he himself seems to share to a large degree – not only with his supporters, but with a large number, perhaps the majority, perhaps the overwhelming majority, of observers.
To the majority, if the majority insists upon equating its ignorantly simplistic and parochial concept of democracy with the democratic concept as understood throughout Western and specifically American history, with all of the virtues but few to none of the defects of the latter concept attached to the former one, then all of us will be obligated to join in, in other words compelled by majority decision of that same type in favor of compulsory majority decision of that same type, and so on, as illimitedly regressively as required until minority opposition is exhausted.
So, we seem to have – or our polity or pseudo-polity in this period appears to be constituted as – an ignorocracy: rule by an ignorant majority ignorantly insisting on its own peculiarly ignorant concept, resulting in a system among whose defining characteristics is the imperviousness to criticism of the ignorocrats’ own self-serving but mostly sincere self-concept.
Comment replying to “Art Deco” at: The Republican Nomination and the Language of Popular Democracy | Ordinary Times
I mean isn’t that pretty much true of public life in general? Or for that matter private life as well, back seat driving, butt-in-ski’s, shading off in kvetching. How would language, politics, art, computer coding all have evolved if everyone limited themselves to expressing only what they really knew, understood and were able to express in reasonable fashion?????
Without our public confusion and aphasia we would be lost truly. Or something. Did that make sense?