By Carlo Leon Sadang | 28 March 2022
Today’s world is divided between a democratic form of rule and rising authoritarianism. The greatest problem is to decide which is better. Sadly the answer is not a clear-cut one. I would consider a democracy that seemingly allows excessive freedoms to individuals, who manipulate the markets, social norms, culture, speech, technology, agendas and organizations a failed democracy. If given too much freedom without any guiding principle a democracy will derail itself into its ultimate goal. Conversely, an authoritarian state which completely controls the markets, speech, technology, agendas and organizations is failed as well. The question is what then an ideal state.
Since the government merely represents the interest of the people for democracy while the interest of the state for the authoritarian, there should be a total revolution of this principle. Both are wrong inherently.
For a democracy, the interest of the people is for the most part flawed. People don’t want to be told what to do. To most, what is allowable is something that doesn’t directly hurt. Directly being the operative word. This is why censorship is so loose in democracies for the fear of being judged as authoritarian. I would even be surprised if someone who lived in an authoritarian state but with conservative and proper policies suddenly finds oneself in a democratic country will get surprised by the behavior of people.
For an authoritarian state, the pitfall is the government. Since the government wields more power on society and the people are merely followers or servants of the state the people in government who lust for power and abuse it forget about the people. But if that authoritarian state somehow manages to find a sympathetic leadership that empowers the people to work harder and protects its citizens despite being authorial, it gains some form of advantage over that of its Democratic counterpart.
An ideal state would have non-negotiable and unchangeable general principles which are not subject to debate whilst allowing the people to have the freedom to pursue their happiness. The key is in the fixation of the government to principle. One of the ways to ascertain what principles to use are the following:
- The principles are applicable in the past, present and future. They don’t change like the natural laws of physics, mathematics and sciences.
- They are rational and objective. Logical and measurable.
- They are universal and devoid of any cultural, racial, sexual, ethical, religious and traditional fixtures and biases.
- Their very exception is the definition of the principle.
- They are applicable and relatable to every human facet of life, no matter how small they may seem.
- Only impracticality of applying these principles limits them, however, impracticality is defined only by financial, physical and situational limitations.
Once these natural principles that are self-revealing in the universal and common realities shared by a man too obvious to be ignored are pointed out then and only then will the laws be placed to conform to these principles. This is where the authoritarian part is needed. This is where at no point the government and the people cannot cave in. These principles must be fed into the youth and actively grow into society and thrive. To name these principles:
- The universal acceptance that all man is fundamentally free.
- Respect for life in all forms, prior and after birth and in death.
- Respect for privacy except for cases where individuals have manifested objective evil activity.
- The sacredness of the human body.
- The sacredness of marriage as an insoluble human transaction. Can only be void if valid circumstances at the time of the marriage which could have affected mutual consent were not revealed. This also includes circumstances that manifested after the marriage but inherently existed before the marriage.
- Freedom of responsible and accountable speech.
- Respect for truth.
- The universality of the moral law.
- Natural laws.
- Objectivity and Rationality.
- The Scientific Method.
- Diversity (culture, race, religion, etc.)
- Common sense.
- The imperfection of man.
All endeavors must be screened by these principles and non-conformance to these principles must never be given the chance to materialize.
Let us not confuse illegal and immoral. Let us not confuse illegal with evil. Evil is universal while illegal is not. For sustainability, this means that everything taken from this world must be allowed to regenerate or be replaced.
The purpose of this article is to make these principles the borderline to which is acceptable and in rendering judgment. True leadership will be faithful to these principles and establish laws conforming to these principles. This is where being authoritarian should only be applicable. For the rest, we can let the market forces and sentiment decide what the people want.
This is the way it should have been done.
Carlo Leon Sadang is a technical researcher and an engineer. He currently finishing his ebook about ethical and moral standards. He is still actively working as an engineer while writing ebooks on the side.