Wednesday, 1 June 2016

Impossible Thing #15

Hi Erick!  Legislative seat quotas are, by definition, totalitarian and anti-democratic since they involve "predetermination of outcome".  A democracy determines by the election process who will represent what jurisdiction for a fixed period of time.  Period.  I pretty much covered that in CEREBUS with the assessment of Astoria:  "A thirst for governing but no stomach for election."

To cite what I consider the most notorious example of Feminist Theocracy quotas -- the attempt to "force-feed" Afghanis a constitution mandating that 25% of their legislature seats needed to be allocated to women -- I consider that a political obscenity and a sadly missed opportunity to bring democracy to a Muslim country.

ANY quota imposed in a democracy is sown with the seeds of its own destruction which, I think, is what happened/is happening in Afghanistan.  ANY quota raises the question of "Why YOUR quotas? Why not OUR quotas?"

In a nation composed of a (relatively) straightforward mix of Sunni Islam and tribalism more sensible quotas than gender quotas -- to THEM because it's THEIR country -- would be Tribal Chieftains (based on influence and prominence), age (the longest-lived being the most reliable), Sunni Islamic scholarly credentials (endorsement by Saudi clerics), etc.

Which is why quotas can never be a foundational element in a democracy.  Whatever you're purporting to do, what you're actually doing is "stacking the deck" or "attempting to stack the deck".  All that leads to is contradictory deck-stacking (i.e. what if we allocate x number of seats to the Taliban to neutralize them?).  Whatever that is (and it can be called many things, none of them flattering) it isn't democracy.

And now, CHARLES BROWNSTEIN (doesn't he look as if he was BORN to the red carpet at Comicon?):    


Erick said...

Hello Dave,
While I agree that quota's are not the most democratic solution, what in this particular instance is the alternative?
Lets use your example of Afghanistan and I will also include the United States. The U.S. was founded as a democracy, enshrined with the greatest ideals and idealism of the age. And yet it's Black citizens were not even recognized as full human beings, 3/5 in fact. Forget about the right to vote. Women on the other hand, long 'protected' by the reverence they held in western society, um were not allowed to vote for 133 years after the founding of the greatest constitutional democracy that the world has ever known. 133 years in a western democracy that 'reveres' women. Now lets shift to Afghanistan, ruled by Islam, which has a uh, slightly different view towards women than the 'enlightened' west has. Such as the husband and or father controlling when and if the girl can go to school or hold a job. The husband being the only one who can initiate a divorce, controlling what the woman wears. etc. Well, you get the point. Now, into this non-democratic country the U.S. has poured billions of dollars and thousand of lost lives in order to bring stability to the country. Whether you agree with the motives or not. So, in exchange for having rescued the country from the truly vicious taliban, we imposed a form of democracy to allow women who have no voice at all in afghan politics to at least have a form of representation. If we had allowed true democracy in a country that has zero respect for its women's rights, then how long would it take for that country to just somehow magically start respecting women's right's? A helluva lot longer than 133 years that is for certain. Will this work? Well it will take generations to tell, and perhaps only God knows. But since some believe that God ordained that the U.S intervene in Afghanistan, then the solution might just be God's plan

whc03grady said...

Can we get someone other than Erick to offer a retort to the 15 things? I mean, no offense Erick, but c'mon. You're really really reaching here. Desperately.

The thing is, it seems to me everyone responds to 15ITtBbB incorrectly. (As far as I know, anyway. I was a non-combatant in the Dave is/n't a Misogynist Wars, not knowing they existed until well after the fact. I don't care enough to be troubled to comb through untold pages of 15 year-old web forums to see whether anyone has advance my point (forthcoming) previously. Anyway.)

The sticking point, which everyone misses, isn't to refute 15ITtBbB, point by point. Indeed, that's ridiculous. No one who's honestly reflected upon them in an unbiased way would believe any one of them. Granted, there are definitely people--yes, I would guess, more women than men--who do believe them. In that sense Dave hasn't set up a straw man, as I think some letter writers responded in 'Aardvark Comments' following Tangent's publication. And they have, more or less, for better or worse (cards on the table: I'd say mostly worse) been adopted (for lack of a better word) into Western society.

That's not the point. None of that is the point.

The point is--and the key to 'refuting' the 15ITtBbB is--that given the falsity of each line item (which (again) any reflective person would grant) it does not follow that the rest of what Dave says and thinks about women (and, to a lesser degree, feminism) is correct.

I don't believe a single one of the 15ITtBbB. However I believe, contra Dave (and please, correct me if I'm wrong) that, among other things:
Women of the age of majority should be allowed to vote
Women of the age of majority should be allowed to choose their own marriage partners (if any), irrespective of their fathers' wishes
Women should not be physically disciplined by their husbands
Women don't take the silver while men take the gold (apples and oranges)
...much less his--no offense--whacked out metaphysical views. (I remember: I couldn't help but chuckle in disappointment as I read the footnote? I believe? in the 'Genesis' issue of Cerebus where Dave dismissed natural selection with a handwave. "Dave! Biology, to the consternation of many, supports much of what you say about gender differences! You're dismissing your strongest ally!" Alas.)

My $0.02.


whc03grady said...

Mitch Grady, that is, if anyone needs to check The Petition (spoiler: I signed it).


whc03grady said...

"...much less do his--no offense--whacked out metaphysical views follow from the falsity of the 15ITtBbB."

Erick said...

Well Grady,
it is one thing say someone is really reaching but it is quite another to actually explain why it is you feel that way enough to convince anyone but yourself.

And using the expression 'no offense' and then going on to give offense, is um offensive.

So, if that is how you want to play, game on

whc03grady said...

Game on? There's no game.

You've chosen to try to refute the 15 Impossible Things. I'm telling you, and anyone reading this with similar aims, that you're on a fool's errand. Dave is right: the 15ITtBbB are impossible to believe. For anyone capable of sustained, sincere reflection anyway. The problem is, that's not the point, that never has been the point, and that's why you're visibly struggling.

You see, Dave is right. 2+2 does, in fact, equal 4. But what people believe is, in my experience, much less interesting than why they believe it. In the present case, to extend the analogy, Dave is saying 2+2=4, and furthermore 2+2=4 because the invisible gorilla in his closet told him so.

Now we're on to something interesting! Let's follow this line, see how it goes!

Instead, we get your risible attempts to refute the fact that 2+2=4.

Hey! Erick? Refute the fucking gorilla.

Mitch (who is what they call an "atheist since childhood" and therefore has been inhabited by a demon for the better part of 35 years, by Dave Sim's lights, so don't get any ideas)

Erick said...

Ah, I see a brain damaged kool aid drinker who can't keep a coherent thought in his head let alone type one.

Your passive-agressive defense of Dave's views makes even less sense than what Dave actually says, and that is truly astonishing. Are you related to Harry Knowles?

whc03grady said...


Tony Dunlop said...

Sigh…Erick, you sounded so reasonable when you first showed up here…but now we're back to name calling…sigh...

Erick said...

Tony...I am sorry to disappoint you, but i don't do sigh.
And I have never professed to be better than anyone else.
When the Daughter of Rosie O'Grady decided to be less than civil, i merrily played along