Principles of Tyranny

Discussion in 'Politics' started by Intense, Dec 22, 2010.

  1. Intense
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    Intense Senior Member

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    Principles of Tyranny
    by Jon Roland
    Definition of tyranny
    Tyranny is usually thought of as cruel and oppressive, and it often is, but the original definition of the term was rule by persons who lack legitimacy, whether they be malign or benevolent. Historically, benign tyrannies have tended to be insecure, and to try to maintain their power by becoming increasingly oppressive. Therefore, rule that initially seems benign is inherently dangerous, and the only security is to maintain legitimacy — an unbroken accountability to the people through the framework of a written constitution that provides for election of key officials and the division of powers among branches and officials in a way that avoids concentration of powers in the hands of a few persons who might then abuse those powers.

    Tyranny is an important phenomenon that operates by principles by which it can be recognized in its early emerging stages, and, if the people are vigilant, prepared, and committed to liberty, countered before it becomes entrenched.

    The psychology of tyranny
    Perhaps one of the things that most distinguishes those with a fascist mentality from most other persons is how they react in situations that engender feelings of insecurity and inadequacy. Both kinds of people will tend to seek to increase their power, that is, their control over the outcome of events, but those with a fascist mindset tend to overestimate the amount of influence over outcomes that it is possible to attain. This leads to behavior that often brings them to positions of leadership or authority, especially if most other persons in their society tend to underestimate the influence over outcomes they can attain, and are inclined to yield to those who project confidence in what they can do and promise more than anyone can deliver.

    This process is aided by a common susceptibility which might be called the rooster syndrome, from the old saying, "They give credit to the rooster crowing for the rising of the sun." It arises from the tendency of people guided more by hope or fear than intelligence to overestimate the power of their leaders and attribute to them outcomes, either good or bad, to which the leaders contributed little if anything, and perhaps even acted to prevent or reduce. This comes from the inability of most persons to understand complex dynamic systems and their long-term behavior, which leads people to attribute effects to proximate preceding events instead of actual long-term causes.

    The emergence of tyranny therefore begins with challenges to a group, develops into general feelings of insecurity and inadequacy, and falls into a pattern in which some individuals assume the role of "father" to the others, who willingly submit to becoming dependent "children" of such persons if only they are reassured that a more favorable outcome will be realized. This pattern of co-dependency is pathological, and generally results in decisionmaking of poor quality that makes the situation even worse, but, because the pattern is pathological, instead of abandoning it, the co-dependents repeat their inappropriate behavior to produce a vicious spiral that, if not interrupted, can lead to total breakdown of the group and the worst of the available outcomes.

    In psychiatry, this syndrome is often discussed as an "authoritarian personality disorder". In common parlance, as being a "control freak".

    The logic of tyranny
    In Orwell's classic fable, Nineteen Eighty-Four, the protagonist Winston Smith makes a key statement:

    Freedom is the freedom to say that two plus two make four. If that is granted, all else follows.

    Following the trial of the surviving Branch Davidians in San Antonio, Texas, in March, 1994, in which a misinstructed jury acquitted all the defendants of the main crimes with which they were charged, but convicted them of the enhancements of using firearms in the commission of a crime, the federal judge, Walter F. Smith, first dismissed the charges, correctly, on the grounds that it is logically impossible to be guilty of an enhancement if one is innocent of the crime. However, under apparent political pressure, he subsequently reversed his own ruling and sentenced the defendants to maximum terms as though they had been convicted of the main crimes, offering the comment, "The law doesn't have to be logical."

    No. The law does have to be logical. Otherwise it is not law. It is arbitrary rule by force.

    Now by "logical" what is meant is two-valued logic, which is sometimes also called Boolean, Aristotelian or Euclidean logic. In other words, a system of propositions within which a statement and its negation cannot both be true or valid. One of the two must be false or invalid. The two possible values are true and false, and every meaningful proposition can be assigned one or the other value.

    A system of law is a body of prescriptive, as opposed to descriptive, propositions, that support the making of decisions, and therefore its logic must be two-valued. It is a fundamental principle of law that like cases must be decided alike, and this means according to propositions that exclude their contradictions.

    It is also a fundamental principle of logic that any system of propositions that accepts both a statement and its negation as valid, that is, which accepts a contradiction, accepts all contradictions, and provides no basis for deciding among them. If decisions are made, they are not made on the basis of the propositions, but are arbitrary, and that is the definition of the rule of men, as opposed to the rule of law.

    So what Winston Smith is saying is that freedom means being able to distinguish between a true proposition and a false one, and what his nemesis O'Brien therefore does to crush him is make him accept that "2 + 2 = 5", which cannot be true if the logic is Aristotelian. O'Brien represents the logic of arbitrary power, a "logic" we might call Orwellian, although Orwell, whose real name was Eric Blair, was strongly opposed to it.

    Principles of Tyranny

    Wow! Thank God that can't happen here with the 9 Members of The Supreme Court and the Extended Powers granted them after Ratification of The Constitution. Close call huh.... What is 2+2= again????? Merry Christmas!!!??? Are we still allowed to say that in public? For now huh?
     
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  2. American Horse
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    American Horse AKA "Mustang"

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    Interesting; the 1984 paradigm is alive and well and we are deep into doublespeak, as synthesized by one of our major political parties; guess which . . .
     
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  3. The T
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    The T George S. Patton Party Supporting Member

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    legitimacy, insecure,oppressive...

    Human Traits...that these people use to foist their illegitimacy upon the rest of us thus creating a tyranny over the power that they misuse granted by the people.

    They think they have a legitimate right stemming from thier insecurity, to become oppressive.
     
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  4. Intense
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    Intense Senior Member

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    Hmmm... Oceania, Eurasia, Eastasia. ....... Progressive...... Statist..... New Speak.... Double Speak.... Thought Crimes..... Hate Crimes..... Possession Bad.......Independent bad..... to question get's you thrown under the bus.... McCain.... Obama..... Graham..... Frank..... I give up. ;)
     
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  5. Intense
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    Intense Senior Member

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    Hamilton's Argument that the Ability to use Power to an End was Absolute, the Means, a Right of the Governing Body, whether the Power was granted or implied, even constructed, justified not by circumstance, but by Right of Authority, even consent, or lack of it, takes a back seat. He refused to see it, or term it as arbitrary, yet that is exactly what he laid the foundation for.
     
  6. The T
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    The T George S. Patton Party Supporting Member

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    Or the ends justify the means...for wresting control from those whom rightfully own it.

    What he never understood is that those that occupy the hallowed places where the people put them...was only supposed to be temporary.

    BY the way? Your OP is a good read...and I'd hate to see it slip below the fold.

    I hope everyone has a chance to read it and reflect.

    Regards,

    ~T
     
  7. Jroc
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    Jroc יעקב כהן Supporting Member

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    [ame="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CbHTJSu_2Lk"]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CbHTJSu_2Lk[/ame]


    [ame="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Nk_HPs34usU"]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Nk_HPs34usU[/ame]

    [ame="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k2iiirr5KI8"]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k2iiirr5KI8[/ame]
     
  8. boedicca
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    boedicca Uppity Water Nymph Supporting Member

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    Don't forget:

    Patient Protect and Affordable Care Act
    American Recovery and Investment Act
    Employee Free Choice Act
     
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  9. Agit8r
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    Agit8r Gold Member

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    Isn't the best selling book in the country about this very thing, and the psychology behind it?
     
  10. Intense
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    Intense Senior Member

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    Hamilton understood Temporary. He fought against it with passion. He trumped Enumerated Powers wit the General Welfare Clause, something there was no trace of in the Federalist Papers as I can see. His Constructive Process within the realm of Jurisdiction makes sense, provided there is the ability to fine tune and correct course, when applied to New Powers, by-passing the rule of law, due process, and the knowledge and consent of the Governed, I would humbly suggest that it is an imagined abuse, which leads us directly to the problems and divisions of today. His argument is for an Empire, not a Republic. ;)


    "It may be truly said of every government, as well as of that of the United States, that it has only a right to pass such laws as are necessary and proper to accomplish the objects intrusted to it. For no government has a right to do merely what it pleases. Hence, by a process of reasoning similar to that of the Secretary of State, it might be proved that neither of the State governments has a right to incorporate a bank. It might be shown that all the public business of the state could be performed without a bank, and inferring thence that it was unnecessary, it might be argued that it could not be done, because it is against the rule which has been just mentioned. A like mode of reasoning would prove that there was no power to incorporate the inhabitants of a town, with a view to a more perfect police. For it is certain that an incorporation may be dispensed with, though it is better to have one. It is to be remembered that there is no express power in any State constitution to erect corporations.

    The degree in which a measure is necessary, can never be a test of the legal right to adopt it; that must be a matter of opinion, and can only be a test of expediency. The relation between the measure and the end; between the nature of the mean employed toward the execution of a power, and the object of that power must be the criterion of constitutionality, not the more or less of necessity or utility.

    The practice of the government is against the rule of construction advocated by the Secretary of State. Of this, the Act concerning lighthouses, beacons, buoys, and public piers, is a decisive example. This, doubtless, must be referred to the powers of regulating trade, and is fairly relative to it. But it cannot be affirmed that the exercise of that power in this instance was strictly necessity or that the power itself would be nugatory, with out that of regulating establishments of this nature.

    This restrictive interpretation of the word necessary is also contrary to this sound maxim of construction, namely, that the powers contained in a constitution of government, especially those which concern the general administration of the affairs of a country, its finances, trade, defense, etc., ought to be construed liberally in advancement of the public good. This rule does not depend on the particular form of a government, or on the particular demarcation of the boundaries of its powers, but on the nature and object of government itself. The means by which national exigencies are to be provided for, national inconveniences obviated, national prosperity promoted, are of such infinite variety, extent, and complexity, that there must of necessity be great latitude of discretion in the selection and application of those means. Hence, consequently, the necessity and propriety of exercising the authorities intrusted to a government on principles of liberal construction.

    The Attorney General admits the rule, but takes a distinction between a State and the Federal Constitution. The latter, he thinks, ought to be construed with greater strictness, because there is more danger of error in defining partial than General powers. But the reason of the rule forbids such a distinction. This reason is, the variety and extent of public exigencies, a far greater proportion of which, and of a far more critical kind, are objects of National than of State administration. The greater danger of error, as far as it is supposable, may be a prudential reason for caution in practice, but it cannot be a rule of restrictive interpretation.

    In regard to the clause of the Constitution immediately under consideration, it is admitted by the Attorney General, that no restrictive effect can be ascribed to it. He defines the word necessary thus: ``To be necessary is to be incidental, and may be denominated the natural means of executing a power."

    But while on the one hand the construction of the Secretary of State is deemed inadmissible, it will not be contended, on the other, that the clause in question gives any new or independent power. But it gives an explicit sanction to the doctrine of implied powers, and is equivalent to an admission of the proposition that the government, as to its specified powers and objects, has plenary and sovereign authority, in some cases paramount to the States; in others, co-ordinate with it. For such is the plain import of the declaration, that it may pass all tams necessary and proper to carry into execution those powers.

    It is no valid objection to the doctrine to say, that it is calculated to extend the power of the government throughout the entire sphere of State legislation. The same thing has been said, and may be said, with regard to every exercise of power by implication or construction.

    The moment the literal meaning is departed from, there is a chance of error and abuse. And yet an adherence to the letter of its powers would at once arrest the motions of government. It is not only agreed, on all hands, that the exercise of constructive powers is indispensable, but every act which has been passed, is more or less an exemplification of it. One has been already mentioned that relating to lighthouses, etc. that which declares the power of the President to remove officers at pleasure, acknowledges the same truth in another and a signal instance." -Hamilton

    Hamilton: The Constitutionality of the Bank of the United States, 1791
     

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