Monday, November 10, 2008

Obama and Unity: Why?

Much was made during the recent US presidential campaign about the need for unity and to 'reach across the aisle.' My question is why is this type of unity needed? Isn't it anti democratic? Isn't disagreement in the political system essential?

I always felt that in a democratic system of government, both sides need to argue their respective ideas and policies and try and convince the other side that their opinion is right. Then they vote and the majority wins. Not that thy can run roughshod over the minority( De Tocqueville's concept of tyranny of the majority.)

These constant calls for unity sound to me like a call for one side to give up their beliefs. Isn't it obvious that the calls for unity are meant to unify around one set of ideals, in this case, those of Pres. elect Obamas

Unity may sound good, but I am not sure how good it is for democracy.


saruk said...

I believe that you have hit upon the essence of the issue.

True unity is not the absence of diversity, it is the ability to agree on those issues about which, argument brings catastrophe!

Imagine a country under military attack that needs to create a caucus to vote on defense!

Imagine if Louisiana had needed to create a ballot issue in order to proceed with clean up after the hurricane!

The question is, as you ask, in politics, is such a thing desired...

Thank you

Aaron Katsman said...

I agree with your point, that you made so eloquently