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This is advertised as a forum for general discussion - so I have a small rant and would be all sorts of grateful to find out what others think.

On the radio, on television and in the newspapers I hear much about "our leaders", "world leaders", "the G8 leaders", and so on. This is becoming a major irritant because it occurs to me that if I have a "leader", then I am a follower. I do not think of myself as a "follower", nor do I wish to think of myself as a follower.

I can't speak for the rest of the world, because I was raised in the United States. I was taught as a youngster that members of our government served as REPRESENTATIVES of the citizens, not as LEADERS. The function of presidents, governors and mayors is only to execute the will of the folks who elected them. They are not allowed (by the Constitution) to make the laws that govern all of us. Their functions do not include "leading" us anywhere.

So I see a lot of the current rhetoric as an effort to convince those of us who do not hold public office that we are simply a bunch of sheep at the mercy of a group of all-knowing shepherds who will take care of us and tell us what to do. I believe that this is a major corruption of the principles on which this country was founded.

Any comments? Agree or strongly disagree? Why?

PetuniaRose (who should have probably adopted the posting name of OldLady!)

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    Aia 1,977   8 Years Ago

    shadwickman> Now I know you're going to criticize me for my anti-conservative post, but I had to say it anyways. If your comment would have been relevant to the matter I would. However since it is not, I don't see objection. And trying to respond to your personal presumptions and … Read More

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    sknake 1,622   8 Years Ago

    [QUOTE=Aia;937333]sknake> I see that you have not served in the armed forces which is probably for the best. Ignorant! You know nothing about me.[/QUOTE] Was I wrong? Read More

  • [QUOTE=Aia;939344]I like your last response in the form that you draw of your own experience. And there's nothing wrong of creating your own ideas out of your on experience, nor can be reputed, nor refused that you have had them. Nevertheless, certain apprehension should accompany the reliability of our own … Read More

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    Aia 1,977   8 Years Ago

    [QUOTE=Aia;940013]kaninelupus> "Epic failure"?? Because I could actually construct a well thought out dialogue as to why I disagreed with you?? No. It is because you have removed all possible doubts that you don't know what you are talking about.[/QUOTE] In response to above post this is what kaninelupus has to … Read More

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PetuniaRose> The function of presidents, governors and mayors is only to execute the will of the folks who elected them.

No man/woman has discovered/devised a system that would prevent the genuine will/voice of the people to be manipulated, corrupted for political agendas.

On the other hand, it is most likely that a great majority will always tend to lean towards comfort, forfeiting responsibility. It is this desire to being taking care of, and reluctance to deal with responsibility that will generate the masses desires to surrender to the flattering words of whosoever wants your vote.

What we are experiencing is the normal result of government as a mean to evade our responsibilities. Forgive me for the choosing of words now, but as I heard once: "Shit happens". When we want an institutional entity like government to prevent, and deal with all of it, we give that entity the power that belongs to us.

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Aia -

You said:

No man/woman has discovered/devised a system that would prevent the genuine will/voice of the people to be manipulated, corrupted for political agendas.

I agree - but I would emphasize the word "system". I think that we are our only protection; in other words, I can be manipulated only if at some level I allow myself to be manipulated.

On the other hand, the apparent general acceptance of being treated as somewhat dumb sheep makes me nuts. So part of what I was hoping when I posted this was to hear from some people who like being led, and to find out what their reasons are.

And on a related (I think) subject - I am very old, and will probably be dead before the piper has to be paid for our "remedies" for the most recent financial meltdown. On the other hand, my son is young enough that he will be paying for these responses for the rest of his life. I have asked him why the people of his generation, and those just before and just behind, seem to have just kept their mouths shut and believed our "leaders" ...

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PetuniaRose> I think that we are our only protection; in other words, I can be manipulated only if at some level I allow myself to be manipulated.

After re-reading your words a couple times I can say that I sympathized with the spirit of your feelings. Nevertheless, we are at the mercy of the masses, easily manipulated by reasons described in my previous post.

PetuniaRose> So part of what I was hoping when I posted this was to hear from some people who like being led, and to find out what their reasons are.

I am willing to bet, you will not find reasoning behind it. Only results from the lack of it.

Ironically, you'll find than most people think they are masters of themselves, pathfinders in their own minds, in control of their lives.
However that's another topic.

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Presidents have to be leaders -- what would you think if President Obama stayed in the Oval Office and did nothing all day unless the will of the people or the Constitution demanded it? I'll tell you what would happen -- he would be considered a do-nothing President who is unfit for that office. I don't want a President who does only the minimum required to do his/her job. I want him to take a lot of initiative and lead us, for example, out of this financial mess were are now in.

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Ancient Dragon> Presidents have to be leaders
Titles don't make leaders.

Ancient Dragon> I don't want a President who does only the minimum required to do his/her job. I want him to take a lot of initiative and lead us, for example, out of this financial mess were are now in.

Like you would know whatever he's doing in a given day.
You never cease to surprise me in how gullible you are. This president is leading us in an unprecedented deficit and you still believe it is in him to get us off of it. Amazing!
He is using the circumstance to achieve his agendas.

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Like you would know whatever he's doing in a given day.
You never cease to surprise me in how gullible you are. This president is leading us in an unprecedented deficit and you still believe it is in him to get us off of it. Amazing!
He is using the circumstance to achieve his agendas.

I never said I actually agreed with what he is doing. That was not the point. The point is --- "damned if he does and damned if it doesn't". Abraham Lincoln once said that you can please some of the people all of the time and all of the people some of the time, but you can't please all of the people all of the time. As I said before, you would probbly bitch regardless of what he does.

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Ancient Dragon> I never said I actually agreed with what he is doing.

Typical evasive excuse.
How is it you accept him as like a leader, but you do not agree with him? I summit you don't even know what a leader is supposed to be.

Ancient Dragon> The point is --- "damned if he does and damned if it doesn't".

That would be your point, perhaps, but definitely was not the point of the PetuniaRose's post. Her point is that today's so called leaders aren't leaders at all. And that in fact they should not be considerate leaders in first place but rather representatives of our will .

Ancient Dragon> As I said before, you would probbly bitch regardless of what he does.

I don't know when you said that before, however you got me confused for someone else.

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@Aia

You just strike me as an extremist for your beliefs (Conservative right?). And I hate extremists because they only lead to problems, such as the ones caused by religious fanatics, or by those who are too damn bull-headed to try to even consider a different viewpoint. You fall into this latter category. Can I also presume that you liked G. W. Bush (*shudder*)?

And regarding Obama - I don't live in the US (thank God for that), but to be honest he is quite different in office than he was during election-time. Of course, this is the case with any politician, and people will never be satisfied with whoever is in office. That being said, you blame the deficit on Obama... whose fault was it for letting it start? Oh! The Republicans! Them with their darn effective capitalist system. Those sub-prime mortgages sure were a great idea!

Now I know you're going to criticize me for my anti-conservative post, but I had to say it anyways.

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shadwickman> Now I know you're going to criticize me for my anti-conservative post, but I had to say it anyways.
If your comment would have been relevant to the matter I would. However since it is not, I don't see objection. And trying to respond to your personal presumptions and assumptions of me would be out of topic.

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Touché :P
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Yeah, like you've never made any personal, presumptuous and off topic remarks.

It's a little deluded to think that every single person in the world would want to be masters of their own domain. Some people just don't care, don't have enough confidence, or are pretentious fools who spew their crap all over message boards whenever they get a chance. These sorts of people are destructive when left alone and need to be led.

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>>That being said, you blame the deficit on Obama... whose fault was it for letting it start? Oh! The Republicans!
Actually it was the Democrats who started it off in 1965 LBJ (Lyndon Baines Johnson) and his Great Society projects and War On Poverty. Then a few years later the Democrats wanted everyone in America to share in the "American Dream" and required lending institutions to let people buy big expensive homes even though they couldn't afford the house payments. And of course we can't leave out the Republicans, such as Ronald Reagan for starting the Deregulation craze.

>>This president is leading us
Oh, so now you admit Obama is a leader :)

>> in an unprecedented deficit
Although that statement is true, it started with GW Bush. He signed a $1Trillion bailout bill, and no one knows what happened to that money -- no accountability.

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Oh, COOL! I was really hoping that my post would get some discussion started.

First - I followed Hiroshe's link to a perfectly wonderful link. I recommend it to everyone!

I found out in the election that elected Clinton to his second term as president of the U.S. that nobody with whom I worked realized that the president of this country does not and CANNOT make laws; that right is reserved to our congressmen and representatives, all of whom are supposed to be representing the will of the constituents who elected them. I'm not sure where those folks went to school; when I was in school, we were taught this in grade school.

I was also interested in Ancient Dragon's posts, because he addresses (in a way) the primary point that I wished to make. Neither "the Republicans" nor "the Democrats" - nor, for that matter, the "large corporate interests" got us into the mess we're in. We are in this mess because of the collective decisions of large numbers of people who should have known better; for example, the people who contracted for mortgage debt that they did not have the resources to honor but sort of "hoped" that miracles would happen in the future; the people who bought stocks, or directed their brokers to buy stocks, for immediate profit rather than long-term company health; the people who did not bother to read or to figure out the "fine print" on their credit card contracts. I contend that nobody "led" us into these idiocies - that is only a rather feeble excuse. In all these decisions, we must each be our own "leader" - otherwise we die. The men who were convicted, in a world court, of appalling atrocities after World War II were, in fact, simply following those whom they accepted as leaders. That fact did not get them off the hook in either the eyes of the court or the eyes of the world.

If you insist on following a "Leader", you may very walk into quicksand - and then you will die, even though you were just following your leader.

I think that if you have a valid Adult Card, you will be responsible for the results of your actions, and therefore you must make your own decisions about those actions.

Go, Aia!

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scru> Yeah, like you've never made any personal, presumptuous and off topic remarks.

Yes, I do all the time, and as soon as I learn of my error I try to correct it. Nevertheless, my original assumption of you turned out to be correct.

scru>It's a little deluded to think that every single person in the world would want to be masters of their own domain. Some people just don't care, don't have enough confidence, or are pretentious fools who spew their crap all over message boards whenever they get a chance. These sorts of people are destructive when left alone and need to be led.

Very typical of a liberal mind to think they know better than others, and always willing to establish precepts and enforce their will on the free agency of those "inferior minds." After all, it is for their on good. Always willing to call themselves the champions of the poor and the little men. Seeking masses to be leader of; reason enough why there will be always poor, sustained by their welfare programs.

PetuniaRose> If you insist on following a "Leader", you may very walk into quicksand - and then you will die, even though you were just following your leader.

From a personal view, a leader is someone that inspires to achieve excellence in any area, mostly by example and not by compulsion, by praiseworthy works, and not by threats and fears. Willing to pull, not to push, to encourage, not to force and dictate.
That's a LEADER, anything else is a mockery, of the many good men and women-leaders this world has produced.
Now, you all take a look at any of those in Congress and see if you can find those attributes in any of them.

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Yes, and following leaders can lead to good things - consider Mohandas Ghandi, for example.

I think the point that I wish to make is not so much that we should try to "avoid" all potential leaders - there have been a number of people in my life whose example I was happy to follow. Rather I think that we should be willing and able to make our own decisions; that we should not LOOK for someone to lead us but rather should question the motives and qualifications of those who are called "leaders" and that we should especially examine carefully the direction(s) in which such leader candidates wish to lead us.

Another way to put it (to pick on someone who has been mentioned in this thread) is that while I agree with Barack Obama's proposed solutions to some problems, I do not agree with others; and I expect my legislators to seriously consider my opinions and my reasons for those opinions as well as the (grounded) opinions of their other constituents. I would strongly prefer that both my legislators and the rest of my fellow citizens neither reflexively agree nor reflexively disagree with the proposals of Obama or with those of anybody else, but that they (attempt) to think about the possible effects of those proposals.

In other words, there is nothing wrong with following in the tracks of someone who is going someplace that is good (in my opinion) to go; there is something seriously wrong with following blindly.

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I don't want to start a flame war or anything, but watch this video from 0:00 to 1:22. Glad to see the USA's leaders pay attention to Canada. :P

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Entertaining
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Silly people, don't they know the capital of Canada is Mozambique? No wonder they still think USA has 50 states, when truly it is just Texas, and the rest is conquered land.

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Last night Conan had Shatner do a reading of Palin's 'quitter' speech (she actually said "north to the future") but I am not enough of a sadist to inflict it so here is Stewie instead.

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@AIA - Here's the dunces cap - now go to your corner!

I always laugh when the Yanks go on about democracy, when:

  • A good chunk of your population never votes... they just b1tch about things when the elected govt doesn't cater to their whims
  • Most haven't even got a clue of how their own parliamentary system even works
  • You have a system where-by, no matter how well a president does his job, he cannot serve more than 2 terms... almost NO other nation has this system
  • On top of that, despite the state of things in your country, your govt is forever telling other countries how they should operate!

Yes elected governments are representative of the people... ALL the people. Keeping that in mind, how many different needs/requirements/opinions does that leave us with?? A president/prime minister NEEDS to be a leader, showing decisiveness, ingenuity, intelligence/understanding, etc. NO elected official is going to make everybody happy, all the time. Your opinions on a given topic will be different from the next person. A LEADER is elected to sift through the chaos and decide the best path to take.

@PetuniaRose
Having Leaders doesn't have to make you or anyone else a follower. If decisions are made that you or others disagree with, there are a multitude of means to stand up and do something about it. That being said, you're not always going to able to change things - as inferred above... a leader has to try and consider what best fits the whole not just individual sectors.

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agreed
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Most haven't even got a clue of how their own parliamentary system even works

The reason we don't understand how our own parliamentary system works is because we don't have one.

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kaninelupus> I always laugh when the Yanks go on about democracy, when:

I always wonder of laughing none-yanks with high opinion of themselves. Ready to express their opinion, showing everyone how well informed they are.

kaninelupus> A good chunk of your population never votes... they just b1tch about things when the elected govt doesn't cater to their whims

What an astonishing revelation it would have been, if it were not for the little "inconvenience" that it is just your own speculation. Nonetheless, let me increase your extensive knowledge of the form and behavior of the people of this land in political matters.
Opposite to other forms of government, the freedom of voting or not, doesn't hinder their right to bitch at any time. That right is obtained by paying taxes.

kaninelupus> You have a system where-by, no matter how well a president does his job, he cannot serve more than 2 terms
I know! Incredible, isn't it? It should be only six months, but I suppose that due to the cost of campaigns we had to go for a compromise. We don't like dictators no matter how well they do.

kaninelupus> ... almost NO other nation has this system
That's why we are The United States of America, and not The Generic League of Countries in One State.

kaninelupus> On top of that, despite the state of things in your country, your govt is forever telling other countries how they should operate!
Other countries don't think of that when they come asking for helping money.

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Yes - in fact, the right to bitch, whine, moan, and generally be a pain in the tail of government is guaranteed by our Constitution. It's usually called the first amendment and is part of the collection of amendments called the Bill of Rights.

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"I always laugh when the Yanks go on about democracy"

Same. They are like yeah we are beinging freedom and democracy to afghanistan... they are supporting a corrupt sham government who wants to not allow girls to go to school......

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"I always laugh when the Yanks go on about democracy"

Same. They are like yeah we are beinging freedom and democracy to afghanistan... they are supporting a corrupt sham government who wants to not allow girls to go to school......

James, this latest comment of yours is a very full of hint-droppings comment, but rather incoherent.
You are living under a government that allows certain level of democracy. Is not your government corrupted as well? Are you not supporting a corrupted government? Is it wrong to speak of the ideal and to work for it?

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"I always laugh when the Yanks go on about democracy"

Same. They are like yeah we are beinging freedom and democracy to afghanistan... they are supporting a corrupt sham government who wants to not allow girls to go to school......

Eh, well - I guess that some things really don't change. About 45 years ago, I had to write a term paper based on a collection of essays by various European journalists and intellectuals about how generally awful Americans (meaning residents of the U.S.) were.

The nice thing about a representative is that when he no longer represents your values or opinions, you can get rid of him reasonably easily. I haven't heard of any way to get rid of a Leader other than by rebellion/revolution of the followers ... so I'm still ding-donging on my original issue. :D

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[...]The nice thing about a representative is that when he no longer represents your values or opinions, you can get rid of him reasonably easily. I haven't heard of any way to get rid of a Leader other than by rebellion/revolution of the followers ... so I'm still ding-donging on my original issue. :D

The peaceful transfer of powers of governing from one governing body to another is something we have enjoyed since the inception of this Country. Worth to emphasised this is. Nevertheless, even more worthy words of praises are due to those common citizens that have taken to heart to promote, believe and constantly defend the said process. Now, if we could only find a way of controling the intrusive expansion of government in our lives....

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Now, if we could only find a way of controling the intrusive expansion of government in the our lives....

If I recall properly (because I may be wrong), but in theory extreme right (fascism) tends to allow less intellectual freedom, but it does allow economic freedom. Fascism has government control of personal rights and information and knowledge (sorry to be cliché, but think Orwell's 1984). Yet the far left (communism) allows intellectual freedom but not economic freedom, due to the government nationalizing all industry and such. Now, this was in theory. In practice, both extremes are much more similar (mostly because the extreme left is way too full of ideals that can't function in real life). So communism in practice ends up incorporating too many properties of fascism, thus leaving its citizens with neither intellectual nor economic freedom (usually).

Though it's funny how we always say that there are "communist governments" in some countries, but that in itself is an oxymoron. If they were practicing communism in accordance to the theory, there wouldn't actually be a government. Of course, that's not going to ever happen in real life.

I think one will always have government intrusion in one way or another.

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Ancient Dragon> Presidents have to be leaders
Titles don't make leaders.

Titles don't make leaders but as President you will lead. If you don't make the calls due to your personal inability to make a decision then your office will make it for you. One way or another the President is a "leading" entity to our country. You could also interpret that as AD's personal opinion that a person running for the office of President should have the personal characteristics of a leader, which they should. Look a little deeper.

Ancient Dragon> I never said I actually agreed with what he is doing.

Typical evasive excuse.
How is it you accept him as like a leader, but you do not agree with him? I summit you don't even know what a leader is supposed to be.

I see that you have not served in the armed forces which is probably for the best. Whether you agree or disagree with a leader you undermine their ability to command if you don't accept their decisions. If someone lead a team of men like you in business or in the military and half of the people sat on their ass because they did not support a decision then what ever your venture may be is almost certainly doomed for failure. I have no problem supporting and embracing a leader while not agreeing with them -- there are other channels to voice your disagreement or dissent.

And yes there are exceptions to this but chances are it was probably an error in judgement on your part if you find yourself in this situation. Take this for example:

If you insist on following a "Leader", you may very walk into quicksand - and then you will die, even though you were just following your leader.

If you find yourself in that situation then go ahead and walk in the quicksand. You could also argue that since he would be in front of you leading the group that he would perish before you came to the quicksand thus you didn't have to follow him anymore. A stupid counterpoint to a retarded argument. We're not talking about the blind leading the blind.

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We're not talking about the blind leading the blind.

Well, actually, we are. There's a fair lot of historical precedent for that - which is why the rest of us should be wary of Leaders-with-a-capital-L. You are certainly correct about the military; but during the time that I was involved with the military, it was made quite clear to us that our own understanding of right and wrong had to guide our actions. We were expected to make our own decisions about what commands to obey, and to take the consequences of our decisions.

Our institutionalized recognition of the need to determine our own course of action is the reason that "conscientious objector" is accepted as a reason for not serving in the military -

This topic has been dead for over six months. Start a new discussion instead.
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