“We the People, in Peaceful Assembly and Secure in our Persons and Possessions except in Probable Cause, Together as One World with God, in Equality, Liberty and in perfect Union, to establish Justice, insure Domestic Tranquility, provide for Common Defense, and promote our Common Well-being, do ordain and establish this Constitution.”
The Preamble [Preamble of the US Constitution as edited by this author], One World
Western civilization’s attempt to seriously think about the state by Plato, the aristocratic disciple of Socrates, after the defeat of the city state of Athens in the Peloponnesian War to Sparta has yielded the Republic.
The Socratic critique of Athens resembles the critique of America in the run up to the Iraq war and in the aftermath of the 2007-2008 financial crisis.
At issue then was whether the Athenian direct democracy, where every citizen held a position of responsibility in the polis at some point in his or her life, was wise in going to war against Sparta to seek absolute victory, not whether the city-state of Athens should be the democracy that it was in structure.
At issue now for America is similar. It is not whether America should be a democracy but if it is being wise when in a geopolitical position of predominance of political and economic power just as Athens was before the Peloponnesian War.
Plato, besides discussing the various functions of the state analogous to the human body in a manner no different from the Indo-Aryan class structure which preceded Pythagoras by nearly a millennium, also speaks of the various forms of the state: aristocratic or rule by the best, his ideal state (being the Athenian aristocrat turned philosopher that he was); oligarchy, the rule of the few; the democracy that Athens was; timocracy or the rule of the honorable; and tyranny or rule by one individual.
Plato’s ideal state is the aristocratic republic comprising of rulers, soldiers and people, the rulers educated to conduct the affairs of the state.
The Roman republic was similar in structure, waning and waxing, just as France has been, between tyranny and republic since its founding in 758 and 728 B.C.E by Romulus and Remus, about 400 years before Plato.
Julius Caesar was assassinated because the rulers (senators) feared his potential for tyranny only to be replaced by two tyrants, Octavian, Caesar’s nephew (western Roman empire) and Mark Antony, Caesar’s friend (eastern Roman empire or Byzantium in Constantinople) to begin the decline of Rome over about the following 400 years.
The categorization of the state by Plato, however, needs reevaluation. There have always been four forms of state: monarchy or dictatorship by one divinely anointed individual; republic or governance by a ruling class as in Rome; democracy or rule by the people as in the Socratic Athens; and tyranny or dictatorship by one man. All governance alternatives described by me above can be civil societies based on the rule of law as determined by the monarch, a ruling class, people or dictator.
That Octavian was divine is an idea which is Egyptian. Pharoahs were divine and Greece and Rome aspired to be Egypt. So was the Jewish Jesus, anointed by His Father to be the king of the Jews in the bloodline of David and Solomon.
The American state is a democratic republic, Greco-Roman in structure. The rulers are the elected members of Congress or people’s representatives who are the lawmakers; soldiers are the presidency, the president being the commander-in-chief and the executor of the laws; and the people who choose their representatives to be their proxies and delegate ruling to them.
Since the Industrial Revolution and later the end of World War II, the world has come to comprise of democratic republics which are all capitalist varying only in degrees – limited, socialist, and communist – of intervention in the economy. Voting directly and in representation to share power and allocate resources, and accumulation of physical capital to grow the economy through open markets diverse in the extent of openness is how the political economies of the various countries of the world are constituted.
America, however, may not be the ideal state. Absolute pluralism is to seek alternatives, for example, in United States to the existing constitution and in China to its monolithic one party structure.
The primary purpose of the state is social order. The ancient Indo-Aryan socio-political-economic structure by occupational class as its basis, the ideal state – a constitutional technocratic direct teledemocracy –
consists of the people, a non-hereditary elected ruler, intellectuals, and merchants.
In implementation, the ideal state is made of one ruler, a president, elected by the people, who is also the commander-in-chief of the armed forces, law maker and chief judge of the judiciary; appointed experts to the president; and merchants, all educated by the intellectuals in their choice of occupation in a non-hereditary manner.
The defining characteristics of such a constitutional technocratic direct teledemocracy are no political parties and direct citizen participation through debate in decision and law making.
After all, mutually authenticated Platonic love, mind to mind, where the brain is the device, is but love thy neighbor as thyself, for the purpose of politics is justice, injustice being the violation of free will, and free will the nature and destiny of all life.
Peace through sustainability is the raison d être of The State.
In or out of the cave, there is always a shadow.