Re: [OPE] Cockshott on liberal democracies.

From: Alejandro Agafonow <>
Date: Wed Sep 24 2008 - 08:32:31 EDT

Yes, but in your article that will be translated in Venezuela you also included Reagan and Tatcher.   Despite all the criticism that we might direct toward these conservatives, they are constrained by the rule of law in a liberal democracy.   And don’t get me wrong. I don’t advocate only a liberal democracy. I sustain that socialist democracy might and should be built upon the bases of liberal democracy.   Regards, A. Agafonow ----- Mensaje original ---- De: Paul Cockshott <> Para: Outline on Political Economy mailing list <> Enviado: miércoles, 24 de septiembre, 2008 14:14:35 Asunto: Re: [OPE] Cockshott on liberal democracies. Alejandro Agafonow wrote: > > Paul, I think that your characterization of liberal democracies as > “essentially monarchic” has a week point. That to be essentially > monarchic liberal democracies had to impose “formal entry barriers” to > democratic actors aiming to represent the popular demands for > redistribution and consumption. > What I was saying in my last post was that the characteristic form of revolutionary government in the modern era has been monarchy. I think that this has come from two reasons 1. The analogy between tyranny and democracy noted by Aristotle, which stems from the fact that the Tyrant is the strong man who is able and willing to face down the pre-existing aristocracy with the support of a plebian constituency. 2. In the USSR, the hierarchical council structure of the 1918 constitution meant that one party (CPSU(B)) dominated the upper layers of the councils and had absolute power. In that case the authority of a princeps was needed to impose unity on the duci of the party hierarchy. Dont get me wrong, I conceed that tyrannies have served a progressive and popular role in history, the problem is that they are not a stable way in which the plebian classes can exert power. Even the introduction of the hereditary principle as in Korea, is unlikely to be effective for more than one or two generations. > > Liberal democracies in industrialized countries don’t have these > formal entry barriers and Venezuela and Costa Rica didn’t have them > even in the convulsed times of 60’s and 70’s. > > The lack of these formal barriers help to explain the growth and > further consolidation of political parties supporting the Welfare > State in industrialized countries, and the achievements in this > direction during a considerable part of the democratic history of > third world countries like Venezuela and Costa Rica. > > Of course, there are other entry barriers concerning financing > political parties that could prevent the consolidation of the > political left, and this is especially sensitive in contemporary times > when media play an important role in political campaigns. But this > could be overcome within liberal democracies with proper legislation > and control. I am sure Scandinavians countries have done a lot here, > but I have to document this assertion. > > Nevertheless, I think that your criticism on liberal democracies have > to be revised in the light of these considerations. > > Sincerely yours, > > A. Agafonow > > > ----- Mensaje original ---- > De: Paul Cockshott <> > Para: Outline on Political Economy mailing list <> > Enviado: miércoles, 24 de septiembre, 2008 11:19:02 > Asunto: Re: [OPE] Venezuela and Human Rights Watch > > Alejandro Agafonow wrote: > > > > > > So, neither Cuba nor the former Soviet Union were less harmful > > dictatorships because they have rule of law. And Chávez is destroying > > the institutions that guarantee the balance of power, undermining even > > more the weak democratic rule of law in Venezuela. He has accumulated > > too much power in his own person! > > > That is why I wrote in my piece that Monarchy has been the > characteristic form of revolutionary government from Cromwell onwards. > _______________________________________________ > ope mailing list > <> > > > ------------------------------------------------------------------------ > > _______________________________________________ > ope mailing list > > >  _______________________________________________ ope mailing list

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