It is on the average known that the ancient Greeks, who first conceived the organization and logic of the democratic regime, considered a second class citizen the one they called ‘idiotis’ (ιδιώτης): i.e. the citizen who left the handling of state affairs to the people holding public positions and who would not occupy himself with anything but private matters. Many also suggest that this concept of ‘idiotis’ expanded to mean a kind of silly/obtuse person, and from there the word ‘idiot’ in English was created.
Where the ancient Greeks right to believe this for a home maker who busied himself with his own affairs and ‘did not meddle’?
Of course they were right. This man who was not taking the time to check on and ensure that every aspect of the administration of the state was going well, and all the actions taken were to the interest and not the exploitation of the Demos/People did not comprehend the very simple fact that his own private affairs would be negatively influenced since he would have left to their own fate the public ones, such as organization/taxation of the Demos and the foreign policy with other Demoi.
This person already was and is in every Democracy a liability and inhibition, as well as the back door through which all the elements causing corruption, corrosion, impoverishment and personal decline financially enter.
Yes, but for this reason I elect representatives who will defend my interests and those of my Demos/State so that I can see to my own affairs and not occupy myself with other things.
Anyone who has ever hired household help to clean and generally maintain the house, leaves his/her home leaving the help inside without supervision, and upon return finds out that the household help stole the mistress’ jewelry, the cash and stocks of the master and all the electronic appliances of the children, instead of receiving sympathy from the neighbours for what befell him/her, he/she will probably be asked the rhetorical question ‘and where were you to supervise?’, accompanied with smirking behind his/her back.
That is to say, any employee we hire to help out requires close and continuous supervision as well as guidance and surveillance. Otherwise, it is mathematically certain that the employee will inadvertedly oversee, neglect or badly fulfill his/her duties and in the worst case, the employee will embezzle, abuse and even steal all of the business from his/her rightful employer.
Therefore, given that we choose the representatives who are going to serve the work of maintaining and improving the state which equals to maintaining and improving the quality of life of all without exception citizens comprising it (minister = ypourgos in greek, which means one who assumes the duty, and Democracy = demos + krato, which means that the People has the Power of State), we are obliged and we need to supervise and check that all works correctly and towards our interests so that we won’t become victims of embezzlement and theft of our power, fortunes and lives.
Yes, but how can I know how to check upon all these people who have special knowledge and experience in politics and I will probably mess it all up?
If it were true that to run a state, internally and externally, special knowledge is required which you need to study, then a regime based on the People would never be able to yield results or even have a specific shape and targets. That is to say, in order to run a state you need common logic, assertiveness, specific targets and simplicity in the methods employed to achieve these targets. The ancients whom we so admire for the creation and work of democracy, only demanded one thing as requirement from the citizen in order to consider him able to lead the state and in general to have valid opinion: age. They demanded, that is, from the individual to have lived enough so that experience is amassed from which consists the knowledge of life (to have worked, to have faced business and financial matters and to have acquired the views needed to avoid dangerous conditions that he has in the past faced).
So, each citizen who has managed to maintain a household through all the hardships of every day life is fully equipped with all the knowledge required to be able successfully tidy up any state and maintain it. If, in addition to that, he/she has managed to raise back up on his/her feet after disasters of all kinds, financial dead ends and unforeseen events within and outside his/her family, then this person is a highly qualified person for the position of leader of the state and should be in high demand just like one who has a Ph.D. from Harvard.
Ok, what about the ones leading/ruling now? Don’t they fulfill these requirements?
No, they don’t. People like K. Karamanlis, G. Papandreou (and his father and grandfather), K. Simitis, K. Mitsotakis and his family do not fulfill these requirements as they are products of dynasties sustained and destining their offspring to ‘rule’ and not to work, exactly like the dynasties of kings and the aristocratic classes of Dukes and Princes in any totalitarian regime.
If we analyze the CVs of all these people, we will see that any work they mention is short lived and hard to check whether the position they held (in universities, in committees, multinational corporations, banks, etc) was acquired thanks to their skills and abilities and not thanks to their names, as these positions are not open equally to everyone as skilled but ‘anonymous’ professionals, and all of the positions are positions of status (either towards students or towards other employees being managed).
This sort of work does not prove survival potential of these individuals within modern society if deprived of their ‘safety net’ of their surname. It also does not even prove their capacity to use the occasional skills they have since they are not actually left with the responsibility of the enterprise in which they worked, so that we can check and see if they’d cause it to go bankrupt or not.
On the contrary, they have beyond doubt shown that even economics specialists have failed to balance the state’s income and expenses, something that women holding the household, with an education level of the first grade only and far direr conditions faced, have been successfully doing for decades.
And what can we do since everyone is inept and from abroad we are suffering even harder financial crises?
When no household help can clean our house, we do not keep paying the inept help. We clean our own house on our own and we do not pay. If, in addition, the inept help has broken or otherwise destroyed property, then we oblige the help to reimburse us before we let him/her go.
The same holds for the cases of the people manning the state machine. All of them have assumed specific obligations, accepting the rules of the enterprise which the state is, and are not only under contract but also under oath to serve and uphold the rules and their employers (the People). Since facts show that they have not done that which they committed to claiming they have the capacity and skill to do it, they are oath breakers and highly unsuitable for the job and so they should reimburse the People who entrusted them because they cheated (i.e. they committed the crime of fraud), materially and morally and afterwards they should withdraw for ever and familially from Public Life.
And what will happen to us without representatives? Who will help and save us?
Primarily we will have to realize that so far nobody has been helping us and certainly nobody has been saving us- on the contrary, everything that can be done to destroy us and annihilate us has been done so that society will return to the era of the Turkish occupation and that of Feudal Europe, where there was no property and man belonged to the few who had snatched/embezzled it.
We don’t need representatives. In the worst case, we need administrative AND NOT RULING Employees. The employee is the one who serves for pay his/her employer. In no occasion can the employee take initiative and order his/her employer. The only thing the employee can take is orders on specific matters and not a ‘blank check’ to do whatever he/she likes for a period of time.
The only one who can help and save us is our own self AND A COMMON FRONT OF DEALING with problems, just like the common front maintained as we speak by the politicians far and wide against the citizens, which is the only thing which has kept him in their positions despite all the treacheries and scandals, like the one of K. Mitsotakis’ tergiversation or the shame of the family history of the Pangalos family.
If the severity with which we check upon associates and employees in our businesses was commonly transferred in our reaction to the actions of these people it is certain that our every day life would instantly improve.
If we stopped fearing that we are not able and assumed our responsibilities as citizens, supervising every step of the policies followed in every sector of the state, then all the utopian scenarios would be possible.
And how can I check on things I don’t even know what they mean or what they are there for?
An immense and obscure jargon/terminology is one more way of intimidation and indirect way to get across the message that the average citizen does not have the capacity to understand that which the politicians do. This is completely unfounded and false since to anyone who is explained every single term, understanding is immediate and certain.
It is therefore an obligation and right of the Citizen to demand explanations. If a message is hard to understand then it is 99% possible that there is foul play towards the citizen who is asked to agree to something he/she does not understand (this is punishable by law in all other cases). Every issue of the state must be presented in the spoken language and with a full capacity of having explanatory questions posed: this in essence is already in effect since the Citizen has the capacity to file any question to any Public Authority and receive and answer (Greek law states that if the answer is not satisfactory or within the limit of 60 days since filing, the Public Service pays a fine). Therefore, the concept that someone should be ashamed for wanted to ask is being cultivated by the ones who simply do not want to give answers, just like we have in the past described happens by those who cultivate and want Free Bondsmen.
I have no time to occupy myself with something like that.
The reason you do not have the time is because you are rushing to meet and face all the problems which you wouldn’t have if you invested this time into checking upon the ones causing them to you. Just as in every thing, if we consider it necessary for survival we find the time to do it, just as we find the time to sue a fellow citizen who is harming us. In the same token, why not sue or warn or check on or supervise those fellow citizens who you fund and pay to make your life easier, not more torturous?
Yes, but in some things this is impossible, such as e.g. secret diplomatic moves or the laying down of the financial policy.
This is not accurate, false and hightly destructive. It is as if you do not look out to see where the pilot will fly to because you do not know what an airway is. There are many very practical methods through which we can check not only where the pilot will fly, but also in which way he will do it. That is, we can and must check on diplomatic moves and the laying down of financial policy qualitatively and quantitatively with simple methods which will truly reflect and represent what the People want and not what a few parasitic and abusively rich business people and high profile personalities want.
And how does one do that?
We will begin to present this methodology sector by sector with next week’s article, beginning with financial policies.