Paul Nervy Notes
“Jokes, poems, stories, and a lot of philosophy, psychology, and sociology.”

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Politics, government.  ---  .This section is about various forms of government.  Topics include: ( ) Anarchy.  ( ) Communism.  ( ) Socialism.  ( ) Democracy.  ( ) Dictatorship.  ( ) Types of government.  ---  1/24/2006

Politics, government.  ---  (1) Abstract types of government.  (2) Functional areas of government: executive, legislative, judicial.  (3) Size of government.  (4) Type of succession.  (5) Forms of government.  ---  12/30/1992

Politics, government.  ---  (1) Purposes.  (2) Structures and mechanisms.  (3) Forms of government: abstract and actual.  (4) Factors and variations: number of people, education, economic and technology levels.  (5) Pros and cons of each type of government.  ---  12/30/1992

Politics, government.  ---  (1) Responsibilities (must).  (2) Rights, powers, freedoms (may).  (3) Limitations (must not).  ---  12/30/1992

Politics, government.  ---  (1) Why capitalist democracies fell.  (A) Weimar Germany in the 1920's was industrialized, and had newspapers (free press), and had educated citizens.  It fell and went fascist because of economic troubles, namely hyper-inflation.  (B) USA in the 1930's was industrialized, with free press, and educated citizens.  It almost went communist because of economic troubles.  (C) This is the argument why the study of economics is so vitally important.  It is because economics can topple governments.  Controlling economic problems like inflation and unemployment is key.  (2) Why totalitarian, centrally planned, communism fails.  Russia, East Germany, Baltic, what caused communism's fall there?  (3) Other cases.  (A) Why did China turn communist?  Was it a violent coup-de-tat that installed an oppressive military rule on peasant masses?  (B) Why did Vietnam turn communist?  Was it pressure from China?  (C) Why did Cuba go communist?  (4) South America.  What caused sweeping democracy in the 1980s in South America and eastern Europe?  Economic prosperity?  Influence of United States?  Information technology?  ---  4/15/1998

Politics, government.  ---  Anarchism defined as no laws.  The polar opposite of anarchism defined as a law for every action.  Both extremes are bad.  ---  9/5/2004

Politics, government.  ---  Anarchism.  In one sense, pure anarchism is not practical or possible, just like pure capitalism and pure communism are not practical or possible.  If all governments were to be abolished then war lords and crime lords would quickly arise to fill the resulting power vacuum.  Government appears to be necessary.  What type of government is preferable?  Democracy.  How much government is preferable?  Enough to protect the disempowered.  ---  2/21/2004

Politics, government.  ---  Anarchy, definitions of.  (1) Chaos.  (2) Lawlessness.  Lack of laws can easily lead to injustice.  (3) No government.  (A) Are there any practical (efficient, effective) non-governmental methods of dispute resolution?  (B) Are there any practical non-governmental methods of law making?  ---  4/17/2001

Politics, government.  ---  Anarchy.  If legitimate government fails, the result will be strife among factions led by crime lords and war lords.  ---  6/11/2004

Politics, government.  ---  Anarchy.  The question is not whether we want government or not.  The question is whether we can live without laws or not.  We can not be lawless.  Society without laws does not function. All areas of society, such business and tort, require a certain amount of laws to protect basic rights.  Government = laws.  No government = no laws.  ---  4/13/2000

Politics, government.  ---  Argument for more government vs. less government.  Those who argue for less government define less government in at least four ways.  (1) Less government departments.  (2) Less government employees.  (3) Less laws.  (4) Less taxes.  ---  4/13/2000

Politics, government.  ---  Bad forms of government.  (1) Oligopoly: rule by and for a powerful few.  (2) Plutocracy: rule by and for the rich.  (3) Corporatism: rule by and for the corporations.  (4) Crime state: rule by and for criminals.  (5) Corrupt state: rule by and for corrupt politicians.  (6) Dictatorship: rule by and for a single individual.  (7) Totalitarianism: rule by and for the state.  (8) Military state: rule by and for the military.  (9) Theocracy: rule by and for religion.  A religious state and religious law.  (10) Anarchy and Libertarianism: 100% freedom.  No laws.  No government.  ---  11/20/2005

Politics, government.  ---  Communism is really a theory about power.  Communism critiques how economic power is used to keep one group powerless and another group in power.  ---  9/2/1998

Politics, government.  ---  Communism.  PART ONE.  Definitions of Communism.  (1) Communism defined as totalitarian dictatorship (bad).  (2)  Communism defined as government ownership (eh).  (3) Communism defined as group ownership (okay).  (4) Communism defined as sharing (good).  (5) Communism defined as welfare systems (example, unemployment, social security, Medicaid, welfare, food stamps, homeless shelters, work programs, etc.).     PART TWO.  Just as there is nothing inherently wrong with competition in certain situations, there is also nothing inherently wrong with sharing in certain situations.  We are taught to share from an early age.     PART THREE.  Some people think that there should be no public services (schools, hospitals, roads, post offices, police department, fire department, sewers, libraries, parks, etc.) and there should be no taxes and that anything more is communism which they view as bad.  These people think all sharing should be voluntary and that they think all philanthropy should be to private organizations not public.  I disagree.     PART FOUR.  Some people go so far as to believe there should be no public standards for the above private functions.  These people do not believe in public standards.  They believe the above functions should not be subject to government regulation.  (2) Some people go even further and say there should be no laws at all because laws are a type of public standard.  I say public standards are good because they help protect a base level of equality that we call human rights.  For example, public education is a right not a privilege.  The effect of many right wing conservative philosophies is to deny all people their basic human rights.  ---  1/1/2002

Politics, government.  ---  Communist Cuba is hurting.  Capitalist Russia is hurting.  The most important thing about a political system is not what abstract type it is.  The most important thing about a political system is lack of corruption in both the system itself and in the people who live under the system.  Also important is the involvement of the people, the knowledge and attitudes of the people, and the cooperation of the people.  ---  9/2/1998

Politics, government.  ---  Confederation: copartners.  Unitary: one big piece.  Federal - bigger and smaller units.  ---  12/30/1992

Politics, government.  ---  Constitutional: has a constitution vs. actually follows it.  Democracy: direct vs. representational.  ---  12/30/1992

Politics, government.  ---  Corrupt government.  (1) When government is infiltrated by organized crime.  For example, when Columbian drug lords ran for office.  (2) When government is coerced by organized crime through either threat or bribe.  For example, J. Edgar Hoover denying that organized crime exists.  ---  12/14/2004

Politics, government.  ---  Corrupt government.  For example, when elected officials act to line their own pockets and the pockets of their cronies with money, at the expense of the people.  ---  12/14/2004

Politics, government.  ---  Democracy = group decision making.  ---  08/14/1994

Politics, government.  ---  Democracy is not representational when big business and special interest groups and political action committees (pacs) rule government.  ---  12/30/1992

Politics, government.  ---  Democracy is spreading worldwide, and consequently justice is spreading worldwide.  Why?  (1) A growing middle-class is better educated and smarter.  (2) Mass communication makes people smarter.  (3) Global trade influences governments to play fair.  ---  7/18/1998

Politics, government.  ---  Democracy requires:  (1) Educated and informed masses.  (2) Cooperation of the masses.  (3) Participation of masses.  ---  1/10/2002

Politics, government.  ---  Democracy, critique of.  A democracy does not exhibit justice when money buys votes and when you have to be rich to run a political campaign.  ---  3/30/2007

Politics, government.  ---  Democracy, definitions of.  (1) Government by the people, for the people.  (2) Elected officials with limited terms in office.  (3) No kings.  (4) No communism/totalitarianism.  Private property and personal savings.  Capitalism.  (5) Is the goal justice?  Is the goal equality (ex. no aristocracy, and equal rights for all)?  Is the goal liberty?  ---  4/17/2001

Politics, government.  ---  Democracy.  Conundrums of democracy.  (1) Direct participation yields majority rule.  Majority rule often tramples minority rights.  And democratic government has sworn to protect the rights of all its constituents, including minorities.  (2) If the majority decides to do wrong (example, legalize murder), is government sworn to do right and uphold justice for all against the majority's wishes?  Justice comes before freedom?  ---  07/18/1998

Politics, government.  ---  Democracy.  Definitions.  (1) Democracy as one adult, one vote.  (2) Democracy as a working dual party system.  (3) Democracy as a set of principles like those in the bill of rights.  Freedom of speech.  Freedom of religion.  Separation of church and state.  Capitalism.  ---  11/30/1997

Politics, government.  ---  Democracy.  Free press, free voting, free market, and all the other elements of democracy.  What are their limits each way (too much, too little)?  ---  12/30/1996

Politics, government.  ---  Democracy.  How to promote democracy, faster?  (1) Education.  How to educate?  (A) Motivation.  (B) Free access to information.  Free press. (C) Leisure time to learn.  No child labor.  Free public education.  (2) Economic prosperity.  Industrialization and cities (to provide free time and spare cash) vs. subsistence level manual farming.  ---  4/15/1998

Politics, government.  ---  Democracy.  Representative democracy vs. direct democracy.  (1) Even though the Internet makes direct democracy more possible, a problem is that average working people do not have the time to hear all the arguments on all the issues.  Thus, direct democracy may not be completely possible (?).  (2) Secondly, in a direct democracy, if the majority votes to pursue an evil course of action, that does not make the evil action a just action.  Thus, another problem of direct democracy is that is does not necessarily insure justice.  ---  8/15/1999

Politics, government.  ---  Democracy.  What does it take to get a toehold for democracy?  What is the difference between a sheriff in the American Old West and a sheriff in a third-world country?  How was the American sheriff able to enforce justice and why is the Third World sheriff not able to enforce justice?  Does it take the will of the government to spread democracy?  Does it take the will of the people to spread democracy?  Does democracy even "spread" or is democracy imposed and protected or enforced?  ---  2/12/2002

Politics, government.  ---  Dictatorship is an example of paternalism.  ---  6/11/2004

Politics, government.  ---  Dictatorship is rule by gangs and thugs.  ---  6/11/2004

Politics, government.  ---  Dictatorship, definitions of.  (1) Dictatorship defined as lawmaking by one ruler.  (2) Dictatorship defined as excessive use of force.  (3) Dictatorship defined as excessive limits on the rights of individuals.     PART TWO.  Can dictatorship ever be justified?  What if it is a benign dictatorship?  What if the adult citizens are like uneducated, helpless children?  What if the dictatorship is an improvement over the existing situation?  No.  ---  7/18/2002

Politics, government.  ---  Dictatorship.  Dictators rule by force and terror.  Dictators rule by propaganda and censorship.  ---  2/24/2003

Politics, government.  ---  Dictatorship.  How does a dictator like Saddam Hussein control his population?  By keeping them unthinking and silent.  How does he do that?  Through fear achieved by harassment, threat and violence.  ---  4/10/2003

Politics, government.  ---  Dictatorship.  People under dictatorships are like children.  They know that the important decisions will be made for them.  So they don't need to think.  They don't develop thinking skills or a knowledge base.  ---  09/01/1994

Politics, government.  ---  Dictatorship.  Stalin stole power by terror.  Hitler stole power by propaganda and lies.  ---  2/24/2003

Politics, government.  ---  Dictatorship.  Tactics of dictators.  Raise an idol image of yourself.  Use secret police.  Encourage and force ratting.  Kill dissenters.  Use torture.  This is how Mao, Stalin, and Hitler did it.  ---  10/15/1994

Politics, government.  ---  Few freedoms vs. much freedom (amounts and areas).  ---  12/30/1992

Politics, government.  ---  Four factors.  (1) Powers (can, may) vs. limits (can not, may not).  (2) Duties (has to) vs. freedoms (does not have to).  ---  12/30/1992

Politics, government.  ---  Good government is a tightrope walk between extremists.  Good government is a tip-toe walk through a minefield of extremists.  Good government is avoiding the mistakes while solving the problems.  ---  5/24/2006

Politics, government.  ---  Government = laws.  No government = no laws.  No laws = no justice.  No justice = no peace.  ---  11/20/2005

Politics, government.  ---  Government functions.  What they could do.  What they should do.  What ours does.  ---  12/30/1992

Politics, government.  ---  Government is important (1) To set minimum standards. (2) To set a standard (often arbitrary) that gets us to all cooperating together, instead of having 50 states with 50 different arbitrary ways of doing things.  In this case, things progress quicker if there is cooperation.  ---  10/30/1996

Politics, government.  ---  Government stability vs. change.  Justice vs. injustice.  ---  12/30/1992

Politics, government.  ---  Government type and the size of the population.  Which government is best for which size populations?  ---  12/30/1992

Politics, government.  ---  Government's function is to protect the weak from those who believe that anyone weaker than themselves should die.  ---  6/11/2004

Politics, government.  ---  How many are in power?  How do they wield power?  ---  12/30/1992

Politics, government.  ---  How many government employees per population?  ---  11/20/2005

Politics, government.  ---  In economics, pure capitalism has a tendency to create business monopolies by creating rules that ensure total economic freedom with no rules to ensure any degree of equality.  So to, in politics, pure capitalism has a tendency to form power monopolies by creating rules to ensure total political freedom with no rules to ensure any degree of equality.  Both economic monopolies and political monopolies (monarchies, dictatorships, etc.) are bad things.  ---  6/30/2000

Politics, government.  ---  International government.  United Nations: history, structure, mechanisms, and purpose.  ---  12/30/1992

Politics, government.  ---  International politics.  (1) Nation vs. nation.  (2) Nation vs. group.  (3) Nation vs. individual.  ---  12/30/1992

Politics, government.  ---  International trade.  International finance.  International business.  International law.  ---  12/30/1992

Politics, government.  ---  International world government will be achieved by breaking down barriers.  (1) National political barriers.  (2) Economic barriers: get a standardized currency (ex ecu).  (3) Religious barriers.  (4) Linguistic barriers.  (5) Cultural barriers.  ---  08/24/1994

Politics, government.  ---  Is government a necessary evil?  Is no government (anarchy) possible?  For how many people?  For how different people, with different needs, and different metaphysical, epistemological, and ethical views?  ---  01/01/1993

Politics, government.  ---  Is government necessary?  No, yes, how much?  ---  12/30/1992

Politics, government.  ---  Is not communism the same as dictatorship in that when the state owns all there is no freedom in practical terms?  ---  9/15/1998

Politics, government.  ---  Mob-ocracy defined as rule by the frequently angry and vicious mobs or masses.  Democracy is not mob-ocracy.  ---  2/21/2004

Politics, government.  ---  Monarchy is b.s.  Monarchy is for childlike adults who need to have a parent.  ---  12/29/1997

Politics, government.  ---  More common than dictatorship (rule of all by one) is a state of affairs where you have feuding tribes or clans.  Dictatorship is not the most pressing political problem, even though many people act like it is.  The most common political problem is the feud, mobs, oligarchy, juntas, etc.  ---  6/22/2001

Politics, government.  ---  PART ONE.  I argue that technological development is necessary for political development.  Some other people argue that economic development is necessary for technological development which is necessary for political development.  (1) Are (or were) there any examples of technologically undeveloped peoples that are (or were) politically developed?  Maybe, historically speaking, the small Greek states, but, currently speaking, no large societies.  (2) Are there any examples of economically underdeveloped societies that are either technologically or politically developed?  (3) Are there any examples of politically undeveloped societies that are technologically or economically developed?     PART TWO.  I call democracy a state of being politically developed as opposed to politically under-developed states like monarchy, dictatorships, etc.  Is democracy the most developed political form?     PART THREE.  What is the relationship between economic systems like capitalism, socialism and communism as compared to political systems like democracy, dictatorship, monarchy, etc.?  Is there any necessary relationship? Is it a cause and effect relationship?     PART FOUR.  Democracy requires an educated, informed public.  Education requires technology like books, printing, newspapers, journalism, etc.  ---  1/6/2002

Politics, government.  ---  People don't understand the issues, alternatives, and arguments pro and contra.  People are apathetic, stupid and ignorant.  ---  12/30/1992

Politics, government.  ---  Powers, limits, duties; how much, over what or who; by level and branch of government; for subject area and geographic area.  ---  12/30/1992

Politics, government.  ---  Principle of government.  (1) Rule by reason.  Rational reasons for actions.  No rule by whim or irrational feelings.  (2) Rule by law.  Systematic, predictable, law with no favoritism.  (3) Public law, anyone can read it, nothing hidden, open society.  ---  09/20/1993

Politics, government.  ---  Questions for all governments, and for all functional areas of government.  ---  12/30/1992

Politics, government.  ---  Republican vs. democrat.  Liberal vs. conservative.  ---  12/30/1992

Politics, government.  ---  Separation of church and state is vital.  Government sponsored religion causes conflict.  ---  7/30/2002

Politics, government.  ---  Size of government.  (1) Federal only vs. federal, state and local.  (2) Amount of money departments spend and/or collect.  (3) Number of people employed.  (4) All the services they provide.  (5) All their assets.  ---  9/19/1998

Politics, government.  ---  Socialism defined as a mid-point between pure capitalism and pure communism.  Since pure capitalism and pure communism are unobtainable ideals that don't exist in the real world, every government is socialist to some degree.  ---  6/3/2004

Politics, government.  ---  Socialism.  Low cost socialism.  Possible ways of.  Everyone gets a minimum of food each week.  Everyone gets a minimum of housing, even if its just public land to camp in tents on, with public facilities like bathroom and laundry.  Everyone gets a minimum of clothes.  Everyone gets a minimum wage.  Everyone gets minimum health care.  Everyone gets minimum education.  ---  8/27/2004

Politics, government.  ---  Specific governments.  Analysis of any government.  Questions for 169 present governments and all other past nations.  (1) History.  Type of government.  (2) Structure: branches, levels.  (3) Mechanism.  Policy or goal, and public administration or strategies and tactics.  What do: policy and purpose.  How do: public administration.  (4) Static and dynamic analysis.  (5) Criticism: analyze and judge.  (6) Purpose.  Mechanism, and structure (size, levels, branches).  ---  12/30/1992

Politics, government.  ---  State: the area a government rules over?  The geographic area, the people, the philosophy and law.  Nation: one of 169 recognized states today?  ---  12/30/1992

Politics, government.  ---  Three types of rule.  (1) Mass rule vs. (2) Power-holders rule vs. (3) Expert rule (technocracy).  ---  12/30/1992

Politics, government.  ---  Too little government results in anarchism.  Too much government results in dictatorship.  ---  2/28/2004

Politics, government.  ---  Types of government.  (1) Abstract types: oligarchy, aristocracy, constitutional government.  (2) Actual combonation forms.  ---  12/30/1992

Politics, government.  ---  Types of government.  (1) Anarchy: total freedom, rule of jungle.  (2) Cooperation: deals, agreements, negotiation of sovereigns.  (3) Rule by force: military dictatorship.  (4) Totalitarianism: total control.  ---  12/30/1992

Politics, government.  ---  Types of government.  (1) Democracy.  (A) What is the essence of democracy?  Freedom of speech, press, and assembly?  Right to vote?  Equality, equal empowerment of all?  (B) What is the best way to promote democracy?  Educate the masses?  (2) What is the best way to fight communism, authoritarianism, military rule, fascism, fundamentalism?  Radios, faxes, photocopies?  ---  01/01/1993

Politics, government.  ---  Types of government.  (1) Government in small groups vs. large groups.  (2) Government in simple societies vs. complex societies.  (3) Government in homogeneous groups vs. heterogeneous groups.  (For example, Japan is homogeneous yet complex society).  ---  5/1/2000

Politics, government.  ---  Types of government.  (1) Let the people rule.  Common sense.  Vs. (2) The masses are asses.  Let experts rule.  Technocracy.  ---  12/15/1998

Politics, government.  ---  Types of government.  Definitions, traits.  What brings them about?  What destroys them?  ---  01/01/1993

Politics, government.  ---  Unjust forms of government: Fascism.  Authoritarianism.  Religious fundamentalism.  Military dictatorship.  Theocracy.  Kleptocracy.  ---  4/27/2007

Politics, government.  ---  Why both pure anarchism and pure communism are messed up.  The rights (to power, freedom and equality) of the individual must be balanced against the rights of the group (including minorities and the rest of the world).  If the individual has no rights and the group has all power then that is bad.  If the group has no rights and the individual has all power then that is bad.  ---  6/30/2000

Politics, government.  ---  Why we need the federal government.  (1) Do we need government control of the free market economy?  Yes, Keynesianism.  (2) Do we let the less fortunate perish?  Is that justice?  No.  (3) Do we let the environment slide?  No.  (4) Do we let corporations rip off customers?  No.  (5) These are just some of the reasons the federal government is important.  ---  9/5/1998

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Paul Nervy Notes. Copyright 1988-2007 by Paul Nervy.