Monday, November 3, 2008

No Representation Without Taxation

Here is it, the day before the big election of 2008, and one thing has become very clear to me: democracy is not a good idea. Not in its current incarnation, at least.

We forget that the United States was not founded as a democracy. It was, rather, a representative republic. The Founders mostly feared democracy, and for good reason. They knew that once people discovered that they could vote goodies for themselves, there would be no end of that until the nation was destroyed.

Bombarded as I was by campaign adds in the last week, I noticed something important. When candidates are not busy bashing one another in sometimes stupid, personal ways, they appeal to the “look what I got for you” approach. It is as the Founders predicted.

There are many people who should not be allowed to vote for anyone or anything. How can we detect who should and shouldn’t vote?

I propose a little twist on something from our history. Remember “No Taxation Without Representation!”? What we now need is “No Representation Without Taxation!”

If being elected depends upon promising to take from some to give to others, we are going to continue to get more and more of the mess in which we now find ourselves. So I propose that only those who pay significant taxes at the level of government in question should vote for candidates at that level. In fact, I might be good to give those who pay more a greater number of votes.

I know that leaves many details to work out, but you get the general idea. If you want to vote for President of the United States, then you must have receipts for taxes you paid to the national treasury. If you want to vote for the governor of your state, you will need to present receipts for taxes paid to your state.

The “one man, one vote” principle is completely unfair. It allows those who pay nothing to vote to take more from those who do. That is not right. It is a system designed to encourage legalized theft. And when legalized theft becomes the norm (we are there even now) then life becomes less good for everyone.

I propose this knowing that it would cut me out of some elections. I have no problem with that. Good is good, right is right, and fair is fair.

(On a related note, check out this article that questions the wisdom of getting as many people as possible to vote.)

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