Tuesday, August 17, 2004

Analyzing History, our Country, and its Voters

by Steve Ray on August 17, 2004

At about the time our original 13 states adopted their new constitution,
 in the year 1787, Alexander Tyler (a Scottish history professor at
The  University of Edinborough) had this to say about “The Fall of The
Athenian Republic” some 2,000 years prior:
“A democracy is always temporary in nature; it simply cannot exist as a
permanent form of government. A democracy will continue to exist up
until the time that voters discover that they can vote themselves
generous gifts from the public treasury. From that moment on, the
majority always votes for the candidates who promise the most benefits
from the public treasury, with the result that every democracy will
finally collapse due to loose fiscal policy, (which is) always followed
by a dictatorship.”
“The average age of the worlds greatest civilizations from the beginning
of history, has been about 200 yea! rs. During those 200 years, these
nations always progressed through the following sequence:

From Bondage to spiritual faith;
From spiritual faith to great courage;
From courage to liberty;
From liberty to abundance;
From abundance to complacency;
From complacency to apathy;
From apathy to dependence;
From dependence back into bondage.”

Some believe the U.S. is now somewhere between the “complacency and
“apathy” phase of Professor Tyler’s definition of democracy; with some
40 percent of the nation’s population already having reached the
“governmental dependency” phase.