Egyptian military destroying Egyptian democracy or saving it? Page 2

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  • Tonka 4 Jul 2013 10:45:26 20,026 posts
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    First the world jubilates as a woman in the states throws a spanner in the democratic process. Now we cheer as the military ousts a democratically elected president.

    brave new world

    If you can read this you really need to fiddle with your forum settings.

  • sirtacos 4 Jul 2013 10:48:52 7,271 posts
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    Which woman did wha? I'm living under a rock these days so plz enlighten me.
  • oceanmotion 4 Jul 2013 10:57:20 15,673 posts
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    Is the reaction not a bit two faced from the US and UK?

    I think without a doubt they want this to happen and get a more liberal government in power.

    Quite embarrassing, politics is such bollocks. Who actually believes them.
  • President_Weasel 4 Jul 2013 10:58:59 8,984 posts
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    sirtacos wrote:
    Which woman did wha? I'm living under a rock these days so plz enlighten me.
    A state senator, Wendy Davis, did a 10 hour filibuster in Texas to try to stop some fairly christian-fundamentalist moves to restrict abortion access.


    Also, he was a democratically elected President who was making rather autocratic and dictatorial moves, and taking the country in an Islamist direction that nobody except his supporters and his Islamist party wanted to go in.

    Nicely played by the army and the police, though - after several years of being despised and distrusted they've adriotly manoeuvred themselves into being perceived as the "good guys" in many Egyptian people's opinions - other than the very large number of people who still support Morsi and his Muslim Brotherhood, of course.

    Edited by President_Weasel at 11:03:06 04-07-2013
  • DaM 4 Jul 2013 11:02:21 12,905 posts
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    cubbymoore wrote:
    The military coup was engineered by laser pen and fireworks manufacturers.
    Did you see that helicopter flying over, targeted by hundreds of green lasers? (I'm assuming that's what it was, rather than some weird light show). Bet the pilot was loving that!
  • sirtacos 4 Jul 2013 11:06:57 7,271 posts
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    @President_Weasel cheers, I'll look up that story now.
    From your brief description though it doesn't sound like she was doing anything fundamentally undemocratic.

    Anyway I would have preferred it if the president and his party (MB) had been ousted by more conventional democratic means, but the short-term result is rather positive in my eyes. That is, if it ushers in a more pluralistic and moderate (and durable) government.
    Not generally a fan of coups or mob rule, however. Even as a means to a 'better' outcome

    Edited by sirtacos at 11:12:34 04-07-2013
  • MikeP 4 Jul 2013 11:24:39 1,773 posts
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    I find it troubling that our governmental representatives are giving the impression that you can just switch on democracy like a light bulb. It's incredibly naive.

    You only need to look at the UK to see that it took a few hundred years, a royal beheading and endless shenanigans to get us into a situation where pretty much everyone gets to participate in our elective democracy.

    If the Egyptian military can give some time and space for a technocratic government to actually lay down their constitution and then proceed to a new round of democratic elections they'll be the stronger for it.
  • Deleted user 4 July 2013 11:28:06
    Someone asked the same question to William Hague this morning 'Is democracy suitable for every country?'

    His response without a moments hesitation 'Absolutely yes'.

    Im not so sure. Egypt, Afghanistan, Iraq - lets see how that turns out.
  • Deleted user 4 July 2013 11:34:21
    oceanmotion wrote:
    Is the reaction not a bit two faced from the US and UK?

    I think without a doubt they want this to happen and get a more liberal government in power.

    Quite embarrassing, politics is such bollocks. Who actually believes them.
    Yeah behind close doors, and through channels, i suspect they are delighted. They just needed to put on that face to say democracy is a fragile thing and shouldn't be messed about with.
  • LeoliansBro 4 Jul 2013 11:36:04 43,284 posts
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    Alipan wrote:
    Someone asked the same question to William Hague this morning 'Is democracy suitable for every country?'

    His response without a moments hesitation 'Absolutely yes'.

    Im not so sure. Egypt, Afghanistan, Iraq - lets see how that turns out.
    O_O

    LB, you really are a massive geek.

  • RedSparrows 4 Jul 2013 11:42:40 22,085 posts
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    Democracy is absolutely 'suitable' for any given country, just as any other form of government is, if the conditions are amenable - a truism, but true none the less.

    And that's the problem. We don't get democracy overnight, and even then, it's light years from perfect.
  • DrStrangelove 4 Jul 2013 11:50:52 3,386 posts
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    @Alipan

    I think being a current member of the British government he can't say anything else, even if he wanted to.

    Our former chancellor Helmut Schmidt seems to take a much more rational stance by emphasising that democracy as we know it (and even our understanding of human rights)--and try to force it on other countries--is a development of our specific culture, that took hundreds of years to develop, and may not work at all in other parts of the world, at least not without a LONG transition period. A transition period where in case of danger intervention by a conservative military can be necessary.

    In countries that were held together by autocrats for a long time, you can't just suddenly remove those instances and think everything would be fine. The tensions in society that were suppressed all the time can't simply be allowed to break free and pit the population against itself and risking civil war. Another thing they seem to ignore is that an elected government can choose to oppress too, in most of those democratised countries minorities like Christians suffered a great deterioration. Thinking that fair elections remove oppression is incredibly naive.

    In fact, this "theory" has been disproven over and over again, yet they still insist on it. I mean, Hitler came to power through fair elections. How much more proof do you need?

    Edited by DrStrangelove at 11:51:43 04-07-2013
  • Tonka 4 Jul 2013 11:53:59 20,026 posts
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    Democracy is breaking down a bit in general. See that filibuster thing I opened with.
    They have rules for how to delay things by talking rubbish. In the end though it was thanks to an angry mob chanting slogans that the bill wasn't passed.

    In "The worlds greatest democracy"... really?

    I'm not saying it was a good law or anything. Just that the way it all played out was absolutely medieval. And now the Egypt thing. I've read a middle eastern expert who said it basically comes down to people not being happy about the poor economy and the corrupt police.

    Not sure the military will be able to fix that in a year either. Then what?

    Again, not saying Mursi is the best president or anything. Just that... will they do a revolution every year now?

    If you can read this you really need to fiddle with your forum settings.

  • Mr_Sleep 4 Jul 2013 11:54:18 16,854 posts
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    MikeP wrote:
    You only need to look at the UK to see that it took a few hundred years, a royal beheading and endless shenanigans to get us into a situation where pretty much everyone gets to participate in our elective democracy.
    It's possible to argue that the UK has gone through all that and our democracy is still quite broken in some respects.

    Edited by Mr_Sleep at 12:00:09 04-07-2013

    You are a factory of sadness.

  • Deleted user 4 July 2013 11:55:13
    @Dr

    I agree.

    Maybe with all these people its not actually democracy they want. Just they see it as a means to an end.

    There actual wants are jobs, security, education, a better life same as all of us.

    If a friendly Pharaoh or Delightful Dictator could deliver it then maybe that would do for some people?

    Edited by Alipan at 11:55:45 04-07-2013
  • sirtacos 4 Jul 2013 11:55:40 7,271 posts
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    Good post. Pretty much sums up what I've been trying to articulate, but more concisely.

    @DrStrangeLove

    Edited by sirtacos at 11:56:51 04-07-2013
  • Mr_Sleep 4 Jul 2013 11:56:06 16,854 posts
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    DrStrangelove wrote:
    Another thing they seem to ignore is that an elected government can choose to oppress too, in most of those democratised countries minorities like Christians suffered a great deterioration. Thinking that fair elections remove oppression is incredibly naive.
    Spot on. Iraq is a very contemporary example of this.

    You are a factory of sadness.

  • RedSparrows 4 Jul 2013 11:57:45 22,085 posts
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    Eternal problem of the post-enlightenment liberal: 'I want democracy, but I can't help but feel things would be a little better if only I were in charge'...
  • MikeP 4 Jul 2013 12:04:43 1,773 posts
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    Mr_Sleep wrote:
    MikeP wrote:
    You only need to look at the UK to see that it took a few hundred years, a royal beheading and endless shenanigans to get us into a situation where pretty much everyone gets to participate in our elective democracy.
    It's possible to argue that the UK has gone through all that and our democracy is still quite broken in some respects.
    Absolutely. For all of holding up of our democratic traditions, to what extent does our electoral body actually act in the interest of the electorate? Sadly, I think the best thing you can say is that it's the least worst option.

    We seem to be slipping further from representation too. Look at the number of former engineers and scientists in parliament, for example. You can count them on one hand.

    When we get into politics as a "profession" with a well-defined route of moving from public school, studying PPE at Oxford, to being an MP's researcher, then a candidate, it's not exactly drawing from a large cross-section of society.
  • DrStrangelove 4 Jul 2013 12:07:55 3,386 posts
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    MikeP wrote:

    Sadly, I think the best thing you can say is that it's the least worst option.
    I think Churchill was spot on when he said "Democracy is the worst form of government, except for all those other forms that have been tried from time to time."

    Sadly, that doesn't seem to be true for a lot of countries. At least not in short term.
  • President_Weasel 4 Jul 2013 12:13:41 8,984 posts
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    anthonypappa wrote:
    i like how he has just been ousted for his cheek of trying to make himself untouchable... bit ironic.

    but also, it is a bad precedent, democracy wise.
    It is indeed. But he was also a bad President, democracy wise.
    If he'd been less of a cunt he wouldn't be in this position.
  • Mr_Sleep 4 Jul 2013 12:18:17 16,854 posts
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    MikeP wrote:
    When we get into politics as a "profession" with a well-defined route of moving from public school, studying PPE at Oxford, to being an MP's researcher, then a candidate, it's not exactly drawing from a large cross-section of society.
    This is one of the reasons why I'm happy for the Lords to remain in its current state, if it becomes voted for by the general public then it'll just become the same stupid pissing contest. Hell, Boris would romp home easily :-/

    It is ridiculous that we have the politicians we do, when was the last time a coal miner/steel worker was involved in government? Sorry for the completely off topic commentary!

    You are a factory of sadness.

  • Chopsen 4 Jul 2013 12:33:08 15,740 posts
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    Mr_Sleep wrote:
    MikeP wrote:
    When we get into politics as a "profession" with a well-defined route of moving from public school, studying PPE at Oxford, to being an MP's researcher, then a candidate, it's not exactly drawing from a large cross-section of society.
    This is one of the reasons why I'm happy for the Lords to remain in its current state, if it becomes voted for by the general public then it'll just become the same stupid pissing contest. Hell, Boris would romp home easily :-/

    It is ridiculous that we have the politicians we do, when was the last time a coal miner/steel worker was involved in government? Sorry for the completely off topic commentary!
    Not to defend the professionalisation(?) of politics, but there is the issue that running things (such as education, health, economy, whatever) is technical. Having a cabinet that is genuinely representative of the population doesn't square with also viewing those people as being responsible for solving the problems that face us, and expecting them to take the flack.

    It would work if we viewed the government as being our representation that state bodies were accountable to, but we view them as also being the solvers of problems. Which doesn't work. Would you expect a brickie to solve the economy? No.

    We can't have it both ways, and you get the government you deserve.

    One thing I do appreciate with the Lords is that there is some regard paid to expertise and proven experience/ability in specific fields. This doesn't happen in the commons because we want nice smiley faces that tell us what the papers have told us we want.
  • sirtacos 4 Jul 2013 12:36:21 7,271 posts
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    It's actually rather topical, but maybe I'm only saying that because I'm about to go OT as well - didn't Germany have some sort of legislature that ensured ministers were sworn in only if they had experience in their respective field? e.g. Minister of Science actually had to be a scientificisist, etc.

    Not that it necessarily helps, mind - Obama is a constitutional lawyer and that hasn't stopped him from letting others wipe their arses with the hallowed document.

    Edited by sirtacos at 12:40:58 04-07-2013
  • DrStrangelove 4 Jul 2013 12:39:05 3,386 posts
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    sirtacos wrote:
    It's actually rather topical, but maybe I'm only saying that because I'm about to go OT as well - didn't Germany have some sort of legislature that ensured ministers were sworn in only if they had experience in their respective field? e.g. Minister of Science actually had to be a scientificisist, etc.
    Never heard of that, and can't possibly be looking at our governments and the way posts are distributed. Chancellor Merkel is a physicist, for example. And the leader of the main party's coalition partner always gets the foreign ministry, no matter what he learned.

    Edited by DrStrangelove at 12:41:51 04-07-2013
  • Mr_Sleep 4 Jul 2013 12:43:35 16,854 posts
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    @Chopsen What surprises me is that while what you say has truth to it, it would appear that a lot of the education that people such as Osborne, Gove and Hunt have gone through doesn't seem to cover basic theories of their sectors which even I understand. Of course, it's more complicated than simple theories but take austerity as an example, it has been proven that it never works as a fiscal solution, yet they're persisting with it.

    Gove has never worked in a school (afaik), Hunt doesn't work as a medical professional. The idea that people who do work in those sectors would not be able to make rational and correct decisions seems disingenuous. I do wonder why more people from these areas don't end up in government.

    Of course, as you say, we get what we deserve and the days of politics on experience and principle (and expertise) seems to only really apply to Farage and the EDL!

    Edited by Mr_Sleep at 12:46:06 04-07-2013

    You are a factory of sadness.

  • sirtacos 4 Jul 2013 12:45:49 7,271 posts
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    ...and Ilse Aigner (Minister of Agriculture) is an engineer/telecom technician. I was very wrong. Seems like a good idea in principle, though - although I've no idea how we'd go about putting into practice. Or if it'd be possible at all, in the UK anyway.

    Edited by sirtacos at 12:47:54 04-07-2013
  • MikeP 4 Jul 2013 12:47:45 1,773 posts
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    Chopsen wrote:
    Mr_Sleep wrote:
    MikeP wrote:
    When we get into politics as a "profession" with a well-defined route of moving from public school, studying PPE at Oxford, to being an MP's researcher, then a candidate, it's not exactly drawing from a large cross-section of society.
    This is one of the reasons why I'm happy for the Lords to remain in its current state, if it becomes voted for by the general public then it'll just become the same stupid pissing contest. Hell, Boris would romp home easily :-/

    It is ridiculous that we have the politicians we do, when was the last time a coal miner/steel worker was involved in government? Sorry for the completely off topic commentary!
    Not to defend the professionalisation(?) of politics, but there is the issue that running things (such as education, health, economy, whatever) is technical. Having a cabinet that is genuinely representative of the population doesn't square with also viewing those people as being responsible for solving the problems that face us, and expecting them to take the flack.

    It would work if we viewed the government as being our representation that state bodies were accountable to, but we view them as also being the solvers of problems. Which doesn't work. Would you expect a brickie to solve the economy? No.

    We can't have it both ways, and you get the government you deserve.

    One thing I do appreciate with the Lords is that there is some regard paid to expertise and proven experience/ability in specific fields. This doesn't happen in the commons because we want nice smiley faces that tell us what the papers have told us we want.
    Running things is what the Civil Service is for, the machinery of state is not the Government.

    Our current chancellor has absolutely no background in economics. He demonstrably is unable to solve the problems of the economy.

    What's of more concern is the lens he's looking at the economy through is one of privilege, where poverty is something that happens to other people, and is their own fault. Is he making decisions better than a Bricklayer?
  • MikeP 4 Jul 2013 12:49:51 1,773 posts
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    I do wonder what it would be like if the House of Lords was decided like a very extended form of Jury Service. Or at least if a proportion of the Lords were. They could start by kicking out the 26 bishops who are full members.
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