Thursday, May 9, 2024



Pol Pot

Under Pol Pot there was an attempt to eradicate the educated middle class elite by murder or exile (to rural areas where they would under go re-education and redeployment). It was similar to what went on in China during the Cultural Revolution. Being opposed to democracy is becoming a creditable political platform in many countries today (Brazil, Hungry) as well as the US. It's actually populism versus democracy, the rule of the crowd over principles like "inalienable rights" and "due process, which are attributed to Washington elites aka "the deep state." Constitutionalism is under attack by MAGA originalists in patriotic garb. In the current culture of  "gaslighting," anything can be turned on its head. Real Americans are those who do away with freedom and rights and also refuse to spend time and money on foreign affairs that are not their business. Democracy is not a simple concept that's easy to understand and it's not necessarily tantamount to rule by the majority--though that's an important ingredient. It's a set of precepts about governance involving bicameralism, executive power and the role of the judiciary. These provide "checks and balances" against the abuse of authority and against the kind chaos that looms on the horizon today. Will Donald Trump exact retribution by exiling the so-called elites to the countryside?

listen to Joan Baum's NPR review of The Kafka Studies Department

and listen to "Young Americans" by David Bowie

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