Democracy — a pain, not a panacea

Democracy in letter and spirit, is ‘rule of the people’. However, people make it convenient and practical, by electing representatives to rule everyone, on their behalf. By casting their vote to their ‘preferred’ representatives, people entrust them with sacred responsibilities of taking decisions, making laws, drafting policies and executing plans, for their progress and well-being.

This idea of democracy sounds reasonable on the surface but makes a crucial and flawed assumption about equal competence and integrity of majority of the people as well as their elected representatives.

In democratic set-ups, as we know, there seems to be very little entry barrier for candidates. Hence, we often encounter a situation where the voters (regardless of their education, achievements, contributions and other credentials) end up having to choose among a set of mediocre candidates and sometimes, even those with questionable track record, as their rulers.

Even among people, not every voter is equally informed, intelligent, mature and honest enough to elect capable and good representatives.

Democracy thus, with all its noble intentions, is just a utopia.

Unfortunately, mankind has never had such an ideal state as when foolishness, dishonesty, violence, hate, jealousy, greed and above all laziness were rare exceptions. These, in fact, have been the rule and are the definitive traits of human ego.

Given this anomalous reality, handing over power of franchise to people (in the name of democracy) and expecting noble souls to be elected is a pipe dream. If that happens, it is a fluke.

No wonder, democracy often ends up as oppression of the minority by the brute force of majority.

In fact, more tragically, the majority themselves become helpless victims and slaves of their own franchise for five years, without even a hope of respite.

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