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Reflections on Governance

已有 2267 次阅读 2021-7-14 05:34 |个人分类:生活点滴|系统分类:海外观察

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Reflections on the Governance of the Human Race

If we look at the human race for the past hundred some years dispassionately, in broad strokes, and historical terms, you can say there are two avenues of approach to governing ourselves. At one end, there is the so called “democracy approach” typified in the US as the government “of the people, by the people, and for the people”. However, we know this is only an ideal that we aim for but never quite achieves depending on the “checks and balances” of a liberal or conservative Supreme Court, an active or do-nothing Congress, and a good or bad Presidential administration. Theoretically, Nobel laureate Ken Arrow proved decades ago that a perfect democracy is impossible. On the other side, the ideal is an all wise “benevolent emperor” which the Chinese have longed for thousands of years or more recently the Beijing Model. It is true with such a person governing can be efficient and look out for the long term interest of the people s/he rules over. But we all know “power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely”. And even if such a god-like person exists what luck a people must have to deserve a succession of such good rulers over many generations. History certainly are not encouraging on that respect for either approaches. Starting with the American Civil war, World War I and II, and other lesser regional conflicts (as well as climate change and other man-caused disasters) are examples of the failure of governance. And a world wide pandemic exacerbate and makes obvious the difficulties of governance. When younger, I used to be an optimist about the future, now I am less sure even though still hope for the best. “Future Shock” and “Self-destruct” are certainly not out of the question. I have said this before: selfishly I am glad I won’t live long enough to see and experience them when they occur. 




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