Starting a revolution (not)

russellbrandPolitics again – sorry! In Britain we are currently having a national debate about Democracy. This was triggered by the comedian Russell Brand, who in an interview stated that all politicians are the same and there’s no point voting:

“Like most people I regard politicians as frauds and liars and the current political system as nothing more than a bureaucratic means for furthering the augmentation and advantages of economic elites.”

But that is not a fact. It is an opinion. That is precisely why we have Democracy.

For Brand, who believes there is no point voting, then not voting is the right course of action, whereas people who disagree with Brand should vote.

But Brand goes further. Since there is nobody he wants to vote for, he calls for a Revolution instead:

“Revolt in whatever way we want, with the spontaneity of the London rioters, with the certainty and willingness to die of religious fundamentalists or with the twinkling mischief of the trickster.”

Brand’s call for a Revolution is not a threat to Democracy – it is an illustration of the right to free speech that is an intrinsic part of Democracy. Brand is seemingly oblivious to the irony that Revolutions invariably take away this right to free speech and open debate.

Regular readers of this blog will know that I too am discontented with Democracy, but on more theoretical grounds rather than being generally pissed off, like Brand. But a Revolution? That’s the worst possible solution you could  ever think of.

Democracy: System of government where a majority imposes its will on a minority by means of the law.

Revolution: System of government where a minority imposes its will on a majority by means of killing anyone who argues.

17 responses to “Starting a revolution (not)

  1. Hi Steve. I have never voted either and never will. 68% of the population are of average intelligence or “less”! So hence, people get the goverment they deserve. If you are one of the 32% of poor souls or even worse if your one of the top 10% of the 32%!!! We are ran by a bottom up process due to the mental capacity of our system…..those being those wlth the least intellectual capacity and ability decide the direction and make up of the governing body. Revolution will just put more power into the hands of the bullies of the moronic 68%. The answer is simple, this society needs to be split into two. Those who can and will or desire to…..and those who won’t or can’t. It sounds harsh but it is inevitable. Or a saviour/fascist type hero is elevated by both sides with the winner taking all. In essence this battle will resemble the struggle between the subconscious and the conscious parts of the mind. The subconscious being representitive of the 32% who do everything perfectly/excellently without thinking or spurning against the 68% who’s leader would be Russel Brand and who like the conscious part of a mind is all talk no action when push comes to shove. And before you say that the subconscious has no imagination, then imagine a subconscious whose leader institutes the Truth and takes away the need and dumb glorification process that the stupid and greedy and self obsessed 68% or in this analogy, conscious part of the mind loves. So in short Steve, the revolution against the current Demon-cratic system will happen with a 100% probability but just not in a way that any of the 68% and their hero would ever envision…..funny that, hey Russel Brand….lol

    • NIge, thanks for taking the time to leave such a long reply, but I have to say I disagree with almost everything you say here. In my view, everyone deserves an equal say, and I don’t believe in categorising people in the way you describe. I’ll be writing more on this in the coming weeks and months.

      • NIge, I feel compelled to challenge you about this division of people into “stupid” and “smart” camps. Which camp does Russell Brand fit into? He seems to be highly intelligent and articulate. So, for me, he demonstrates that “smart” people can be completely wrong.

        In my view, everyone has so much to offer, whether they are smart or not by your definition. One of the great challenges to society is to empower everyone so that they can give as much as they possibly can.

        Being intelligent is no guarantee of being right. I like to think I’m intelligent, but I know that I am wrong in many of my beliefs. The trouble is I don’t know which of my beliefs are false. If I did I would change them. That’s why I’m putting my ideas “out there” on this blog, hoping that people will challenge me. So, please continue to challenge me, and I’ll continue to challenge you. Then we can both learn more together.

  2. My response to this thought-provoking post was entirely different to that of Nige … which is interesting. I felt prompted into a reflective sense of our inevitable social/political disempowerment as we are encouraged ever more to look for our self-empowerment. That’s the heart of the Big Brother mentality to me, and precisely what Brand is failing to understand … or is promoting. The more we empower ourselves the less we empower others. Perhaps an anthill or a beehive is a better social model than a Lemming free fall. Sometimes I’m embarrassed to think that the Chinese approach to the issue of “out of many, one” is more successful than the Western approach. At any rate … thanks. I needed to think a bit today!

    • I agree that self empowerment is a trend, and a positive one. Consider Russell Brand himself – a working class boy who is now one of the most popular comedians in Britain and able to express his political views with some influence. That must be good.

      But as individuals become more empowered, and as technology changes society in increasingly rapid and unpredictable ways, governments are left with less power. Perhaps Brand’s real problem is that he secretly (perhaps unknowingly) yearns for an authoritarian leader who can “fix” the country’s problems.

      In contrast to Brand’s “democracy has failed us” wailings, I am increasingly excited that governments are “pulling back” from endless interference in people’s lives, as demonstrated by the recent lifting of the ban on gay marriage, and by the European Declaration of Human Rights. It’s a kind of coming of age process, which can be alarming if you aren’t ready to take responsibility for your own life.

  3. Hi Steve, well i’m surprised that you of all people are happy to live on a planet where effectively important decision that control the direction for your life and maybe even of your very life itself is decided by not a peer or one of your betters but by the equivalent of a monkey! The iq of the average person falls into the 100-110 catergory. And the iq of a Down Syndrone person is around the 80 mark or less. Keep that 20-30 iq points in mind for now. I unfortunately fall into the 150+ catergory. I say unfortunately because the system i was born into and never asked if i wanted, is ran by a voting block of people who are less intellectually to me than a Down Syndrone person is to the average person. I once had to explain to someone, albeit very slowly, why i didn’t vote. In Australia it is against the “law” not to vote and your fined if your caught, and can be jailed if your a repeat offender such as myself. This punishing people for not voting is to force people into partaking in deciding who will make decisions for them and takes away the arguement of revolutionary action as “we” all partook in the decision making process. A friend of mine berated me for not voting recently and asked me why i didn’t vote. I then asked her if she would vote for a person with Down Syndrone if one was put forward by a party as a potential Prime Minister. She said no without hesitation. When i asked why not, she went all coy and went a politicly correct on me with all sorts of reasons, but when pressed she told the “truth” and said that they are not mentaly capable to do the job. I then told her she answered her own question of why i don’t vote. That the iq difference between a person with Down Syndrone and herself is only 20 points. And the difference between her and me is over 40 points. And if she was reluctant to put a person into a positition of making choices for her based on iq, and that with only a difference of 20 points, i was certainly never going to partake in a process that put someone into power with more 40 points difference!!! You for some reason Steve may have faith in this laughable process but i don’t!!! Maybe it has something to do with you having a “belief system” that was and is constructed on whatever rationale that made sense when you constructed it. Maybe if you deconstruct your insanity inducing belief system and come back to reality you will see things for what they really are. Or you can keep kidding yourself that the current system is the way forward…

  4. Nige, I actually am quite unhappy with the theoretical framework of democracy and one of my present aims on this blog is to propose a better alternative.

    However, I am far more unhappy with your insistence in categorising people. IQ is not a person’s sole attribute. People have skills, talents, knowledge and aptitudes in all kinds of ways, and IQ measures just one.

    We are all human, and our brains are vastly more advanced than all other lifeforms on this planet (although primates, dogs and octopi also have a lot to offer), and the difference between people is really not that big.

    But to contradict what I just said, people are incredibly diverse in their abilities, ideas and beliefs and this diversity is an enormous resource. Excluding people and categorising people is not just wrong, it is stupid.

    • So what are you trying to say Steve, that i should be happy that someone i would never ask advice from and is not a peer, that i should allow them to make decisions that affect my life? I should be estatic that some moron who “believes” he or she is correct chooses my destiny? I don’t know how many lives you’ve got Steve but i only have one! One shot at existence and the quality of that existence and length of it should be in my hands and not that of someone else! And certainly not of someone i never chose!!!! Maybe if god or the creator was a candidate i would have a little faith but to put my one chance into the hands of morons choosing another moron is beyond stupidity!!!!! Not even god would taje sympathy on me if i complained about what life i had…..he would laugh his ass off tell me i shouldn’t have been so fucking stupid and should have taken control of my own destiny. You just keep on “believing” in this system Steve, because i know it is not for me and never will be.

  5. Nige, re your comment “I then asked her if she would vote for a person with Down Syndrone if one was put forward by a party as a potential Prime Minister.”

    A generation ago, people said the same thing about gays, lesbians and black people.

    A century ago, people said the same about women.

    Two centuries ago, they said the same about anyone who didn’t own property.

    • Well then start a political party and put forth a Down Syndrone for Prime minister. I don’t vote so i don’t care who you vote for. If you trying to say i am antiquated in my thinking then go ahead….but i am not one of the morons voting….lol. I plan to take control of my life and destiny….if you don’t mind yours being decided for you and those decision being made by retards then knock yourself out……..just don’t whinge when it fucks up….because you were part of the whole process! The only people by rights who have a reason to complain about the democratic system and what it does are people like me who have never vited or partook in it in anyway. You people astound me at times.

      • Unfortunately, not voting doesn’t mean that you can opt out. Politicians still make laws that apply to you, whether you voted for them or not.

        Fortunately, in the West politicians have relatively little impact on how we run our lives – which is as it should be. I would like them to have even less control in the future.

  6. And that is your attitude to me and mine is it Steve? That we just have to suck it up and take it? Well my friend that type of thinking from your type of people will have to be changed then. There needs to be a option for those of us who choose to decide their own destiny and not let it be in the hands of insane believers who believe in allowing soneone else to waste their lives for them and decide on what options you have. So when, not if Steve what i do affects your life then i say this to you,’ tough luck buddy’….because i have a way to “opt” out my friend and it is a win win situation for me. When the Truth is instigated and accesable it will set me free and those aligned with it. The only ones to suffer from it will be “believers”, to whom i will say,’ you will just have to suck it up’!…lol.

  7. Another great post Steve! I am trying to think a single example where revolution had a happy ending… Can’t think of any . Can you? ( I mean immediately not ten years down the line after lots of horribly violent deaths)

    • I struggled to think of one, although there might be a few exceptions. Having said that, I don’t wish to defend brutal authoritarian governments. If the people of North Korea rose up against their military leaders, I would be cheering them on, but also very concerned about the outcome.

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