Tag Archives: Federalist Papers

A lot of this country is just that

OscarKansasI like the country. Each year, Emily & I drive from New Orleans, Louisiana, all the way to Seattle, Washington, and try our best to alter the route each time. Usually, my favorite parts of the drive is when we go through those cities and states you wouldn’t ordinarily cross…such as Kansas and Wyoming.

So, I like the country. But, my goodneess is there a lot of it.

It’s astonishing really, because while we all know its there is a lot of country, I’m not sure if we think about it. I know I don’t, as I pretty much assume that life-as-I-know-it is life, and that everyone lives with a Starbucks near by, a shopping mall within 10 miles and a move theater close enough to attend without planning.

But everyone doesn’t live this way, and this becomes apparent on just two occassions:

(1) When you’re driving cross-country; and

(2) When you’re watching national election returns.

So, one is obvious, and that’s because my wife and I drive across the country for almost three solid days to get to Seattle, and we go through cities for about a grand total of 45 minutes.

For two, just think about those nights when presidential election returns come in, and candidates collect electorial votes with each of those mid-West states, and each of those counties that we’ve never heard of and never thought of. Who are these people? Don’t they blog?!

Well, they don’t blog, and they don’t have protests, and they aren’t very boisterous at all [short of the string of anti-abortion billboards on I-70 in Kansas]. In fact, the only time I ever think of them politically is when national election returns come in, and Iowa and Idaho make the rest of the states’ hold their breath.

For this reason, concentrated folks in the main American cities have fought the electorial system, and they have their reasons. It’s not 1776 anymore, Toto, right?

Well, that would make us closer to a pure democracy, and I happen to agree with Publius on this type of government:

A common passion or interest will, in almost every case, be felt by a majority of the whole; a communication and concert result from the form of government itself; and there is nothing to check the inducements to sacrifice the weaker party or an obnoxious individual. Hence it is that such democracies have ever been spectacles of turbulence and contention; have ever been found incompatible with personal security or the rights of property; and have in general been as short in their lives as they have been violent in their deaths.

Federalist #10.