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View Diary: Beware of Tyrants in Sheep's Clothing (215 comments)

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  •  1776 was about -Independence-, not "Freedom" (18+ / 0-)

    from "tyranny." It's a subtle but important distinction.

    It must always be remembered that the "government" against which the American Revolutionaries rebelled was one in which they had no representation, no vote and no recourse, that sat an ocean away and was ruled by an unaccountable king whose power was hereditary, not democratic. They had no way of "overthrow[ing]" such "government" except by declaring independence and fighting for it when the Crown would not grant it peacefully.

    The American people have an opportunity every two years to "overthrow" their government. (In fact, Americans do "overthrow" their government every two years; no two Congresses have had the same composition from one two-year session to the next.)

    What prevents "tyranny" in a representative democracy is not guns, or the threat of armed resistance or insurrection. It is a system of government that includes  three coequal branches, checks and balances, separation of powers, a bicameral legislature, an independent judiciary, dual sovereignty (state/federal), full representation, regular lawful elections, habeas corpus, due process of law, separation of church and state, no official state religion, civilian control of the military, and nothing resembling a monarchy, or hereditary royalty/nobility.

    •  Actually, it was both freedom and independence. (5+ / 0-)

      Don't take my word for it, take it straight from the text of the DoI itself:

      We, therefore, the Representatives of the united States of America, in General Congress, Assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the Name, and by Authority of the good People of these Colonies, solemnly publish and declare, That these United Colonies are, and of Right ought to be Free and Independent States;
      and that as Free and Independent States, they have full Power to levy War,

      It's safe to trust a sane person with the keys to nuclear weapons, but it's not safe to trust an insane person with the cleaners under the kitchen sink. The answer is not gun control, it's people care.

      by JayFromPA on Sun Jan 20, 2013 at 06:20:41 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  I agree with your definition of our government... (5+ / 0-)

      "It is a system of government that includes  three coequal branches, checks and balances, separation of powers, a bicameral legislature, an independent judiciary, dual sovereignty (state/federal), full representation, regular lawful elections, habeas corpus, due process of law, separation of church and state, no official state religion, civilian control of the military, and nothing resembling a monarchy, or hereditary royalty/nobility."

      Now if we can only get the plutocrats, the shadow government and the security state to agree.

    •  And then all three branches were promptly (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Joieau

      bought by corporations and the great red versus blue  kabuki game began. :)

      Obama: self-described moderate Republican

      by The Dead Man on Sun Jan 20, 2013 at 08:06:54 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Most people in this country (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Laconic Lib

      had no representation in the new government when it was formed.

      I'm not certain how it was much more democratic than Britain, if you look at the details of governance and franchise.

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