FROM THE BOQ: BUSINESS, POLITICS AND ETHICS #74

Another question from Gregory Stock’s book is this:

Would you rather live in a democracy run by inept, corrupt leaders or in a dictatorship run by capable, honest ones?

Honestly, I’ve been hung-up on this question for a while because the semantics are so annoying!

The terms, democracy and dictatorship, are very loosely applied today.

As a form of government, a democracy is run by everyone.

As a form of government, a dictatorship is run by only one.

The above may be simplistic, but it’s arguably closer to the actual definitions of the two terms than the popular meanings are.

The United States, for example, is not a democracy but a republic.  If it were a democracy, all of its citizens old enough to vote would vote on everything directly.

And North Korea, for example, is not a dictatorship but a one-party state.  If it were a dictatorship there would be no party, just one ruling individual.

That said, the United States’ form of government is arguably the closest thing to a democracy.

And North Korea’s form of government is arguably the closest thing to a dictatorship.

Now to the question!

I would rather live in a dictatorship run by a capable, honest leader–provided I were the dictator!  Otherwise, I would rather live in a democracy run by inept, corrupt leaders–bearing in mind that we would all be inept and corrupt!

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