Archive for January 3rd, 2013

Democratizing Dictatorship

A few people remember, but never mention, that there was no autopsy on Ted Kennedy’s victim. If he had been a Southern politician, nobody would ever have been allowed to forget it.

Another of these cases where if it had been done by Southerners it would-be national news was the New York convention.

If I remember correctly, of the two major parties in each of fifty states, only one nominated its candidates by convention rather than by primary. In fact, only one of the two parties in that single state did it.

The party was Republican and the state was New York.

The reason was that a majority of New York Republicans at that time were very conservative and ruled the upper part of the state. A primary would have thrown out Rockefeller, Javits, and all the other liberals the convention nominated.

If this had been done for segregationist governors in the South, it would still be mentioned regularly.
It was and is absolutely unmentioned.

We kept score then on conservatives by their getting a low score on the ADA board and a high score on the ACA board. Of New York’s 43 representatives, 19 had over 90% ACA and under 10% ADA scores.

The “flyover” part of New York State was bypassed by a convention.

This is a rule of politics most people are not aware of: If you want to strangle democracy, you have a HUGE legislature or convention.

The Soviets had what was called “democratic centralism.” This meant that the local Party convention was huge, and each of those in turn members of HUGE regional convention. They all elected a HUGE legislative body for the Republic, and each Republic, even the smallest, elected a giant house to Moscow, for the Party, for the government, for whatever.

At each level, as in New York, there were so many members that every minute of speaking time was ruled from the podium. As in New York, the convention decided who was genuinely a delegate. This was all, of course, to avoid democracy, unmentioned in the USSR just as the New York convention went into the Silence here.

This highly inclusive system of representation is a standard way to centralize all power. A Member of Parliament in Britain is powerless. The Prime Minister is essentially a dictator in the same way Joe Cannon was the dictator of the House of Representatives around 1910.