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In practice, elections are inherently oligarchic, as argued by Aristotle on a theoretical level and demonstrated by the Romans on a practical one.

If you are not convinced, try it on someone who has not been entirely debauched by economics. — Piero Sraffa
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Mon Aug 6th, 2012 at 11:14:15 AM EST
[ Parent ]
elections are inherently oligarchic

Two possibilities :

  1. They reflect the (existing or latent) oligarchy in an already oligarchic society
  2. even in a non-oligarchic society, they favour the emergence of an oligarchy.

At best, elected representatives are a self-selecting sample of people who believe they know better than the rest of their fellow citizens.

The essence of democracy is government by consent. This does not require the active involvement of every citizen; and clearly it's too much to ask of most people. Sortition may be asking too much.

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II

by eurogreen on Tue Aug 7th, 2012 at 03:40:52 AM EST
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Sortition may be asking too much

Are you against jury duty or drawing lots for manning polling stations?

It's not a favour being asked, it's a civic duty. Plus, it would be remunerated as a full-time job. Possibly at a couple multiples of median income so as not to make it an overly onerous duty.

Military service or mandatory civic service are other examples of civic duty.

If you are not convinced, try it on someone who has not been entirely debauched by economics. — Piero Sraffa

by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Tue Aug 7th, 2012 at 03:49:57 AM EST
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3. They allow oligarchic groups to gain disproportionate political influence.

If you are not convinced, try it on someone who has not been entirely debauched by economics. — Piero Sraffa
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Tue Aug 7th, 2012 at 03:51:02 AM EST
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