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Bondage to Bondage – Democracy Bye-bye

This commentary from Self-Winding quotes Alexander Tyler, a Scottish history professor at the University of Edinburgh in 1787. He was speaking about the fall of the Athenian Republic some 2,000 years earlier:

A democracy is always temporary in nature; it simply cannot exist as a permanent form of government. A democracy will continue to exist up until the time that voters discover they can vote themselves generous gifts from the public treasury. From that moment on, the majority always votes for the candidates who promise the most benefits from the public treasury, with the result that every democracy will finally collapse due to loose fiscal policy, which is always followed by a dictatorship.

The average age of the world’s greatest civilizations from the beginning of history, has been about 200 years. During those 200 years, these nations always progressed through the following sequence:

1. From bondage to spiritual faith;
2. From spiritual faith to great courage;
3. From courage to liberty;
4. From liberty to abundance;
5. From abundance to complacency;
6. From complacency to apathy;
7. From apathy to dependence;
8. From dependence back into bondage

The article goes on to consider some interesting facts from the American presidential election, though what it alludes to is certainly not confined to that country alone.

5 Responses to “Bondage to Bondage – Democracy Bye-bye”

  1. Fascinating! It rings true. Being an American, it feels true. I’m going to check this out further. Thanks for posting this.

  2. hgh says:

    Thanks for an informative post. It’s an interesting view. I’d be interested in some of the areas that haven’t really gone through these seeming cycles such as India.

  3. Bob Homes says:

    Yeah, that’s interesting. America is bound to fall at some point, it’s true, but I don’t think it’ll be because of “loose fiscal policy.”

  4. Money Making Websites says:

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  5. Monica Clark says:

    I’ve heard comments on this very passage before, and considering the current state of American society right now, it does seem possible that we are headed down this path. I love America, we are resilient, and I hope the people can turn it around before the point of no return.