2020-07-10 – Just saw the following headline: “Do you ever just wonder what it would be like if we overthrew the ruling class.” It didn’t have a question mark, but I’m going to treat it as a question.
No, I never wondered that.
But, now that you mention it, I did some quick wondering, and here’s my conclusion: even if we overthrew the ruling class, the world would be pretty similar. We’d just have a new ruling class.
That’s not the answer they wanted.
But human nature (and sheer numbers) requires leaders and followers. We’re not going to get rid of that in a revolution. A better approach would be to acknowledge this fact but seek to mitigate the worst features of leaders.
Democracy does a lot of that. Ensuring that the leadership rotates from one person to another is important. Structuring things to pit one alpha against the other alphas is important as well. The U.S. government has checks and balances to achieve this in the realm of government, but the checks and balances have eroded (and were probably not as strong to begin with as they should have been). In the field of business, anti-trust laws were enacted to ensure competition—but those laws have eroded even more! And don’t get me started on the cockamamie distribution of wealth. We do much better when the rich have less economic power over the rest of us.
We’ve got a lot of work to do. But exchanging one ruling class for another is not the best route.
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Don’t follow leaders, watch the parkin’ meters
–Bob Dylan, Subterranean Homesick Blues