May 24, 2010

I used to like Tom Friedman’s writings on world affairs, but in recent years I’ve realized he’s nothing but an anti-democratic ass. His latest mental flatus is his fervent wish that America could be like Communist China  – but just for a day!

Well, David, [our political system has] been decimated.  It’s been decimated by everything from the gerrymandering of political districts to cable television to an Internet where I can create a digital lynch mob against you from the left or right if I don’t like where you’re going, to the fact that money and politics is so out of control—really our Congress is a forum for legalized bribery.  You know, that’s really what, what it’s come down to.  So I don’t—I, I—I’m worried about this, it’s why I have fantasized—don’t get me wrong—but that what if we could just be China for a day?  I mean, just, just, just one day.  You know, I mean, where we could actually, you know, authorize the right solutions, and I do think there is a sense of that, on, on everything from the economy to environment.  I don’t want to be China for a second, OK, I want my democracy to work with the same authority, focus and stick-to-itiveness.  But right now we have a system that can only produce suboptimal solutions.

The point of democracy, Tom, is that it allows for a compromise among competing interests that can be agreed to and accepted by a majority of citizens. By nature that won’t be a perfect solution, but it will have the benefit of having legitimacy. (Want to see the opposite in action? Look at how strongly ObamaCare is being rejected after being shoved down our throats by an authoritarian majority.) Your wise, oligarchic leadership in the Forbidden City can only gain acceptance for its measures because, in the end, it has a monopoly of force and the will to use it.

Your fantasy is sickening, but I guess commanding the peasants to do your will is easy to imagine when you live in your own ivory tower.

Do us a favor, Tom, and just move to Beijing. We’ll all be happier.

(via Power Line)

LINKS: More from The Anchoress. An earlier post on Friedman.