Welcome to the new version of European Tribune. It's just a new layout, so everything should work as before - please report bugs here.
Display:
Is that an Ireland only exception or do think all democratic states are not democratic in true sense, so their citizens are just subjects, not do be made responsible for the mad antics of their overlords?
by IM on Sun Feb 6th, 2011 at 04:06:43 PM EST
[ Parent ]
There is a misunderstanding of the structure and nature of citizen responsibility for their government in the western democracies. Let me illustrate:

Osama:

  • The US government is guilty of thousands of murders of Muslims around the world, in actions of imperialist intent [True]
  • The US government is elected by the people of the US, in free and democratic (usually) elections [True]... THEREFORE

  • I can inflict personal punishment on individual US citizens because of they share a collective responsibility for their government. So it's OK to blow up the twin towers because that's the only way I can punish (random) Americans for their complicity in their governments machinations, because of which all of them have enjoyed perks like cheap oil forever.

Now the premises of the argument are true, but the conclusion does not follow. Citizen responsibility is a different sort of responsibility than criminal responsibility and can not be addressed by an international equivalent of a penal system. Before you say that this is physical punishment, I assure you that the results of ECB/IMF policy in the EU and Ireland will be very physical for many people, most of which were the people at the bottom of the ladder, the least responsible for whatever their banker overlords had indeed decided. In fact should Ireland not default, those least affected by the depression that will ensue will be the buggers at the top who were most implicated in and most responsible for this whole debacle.

How's that for justice?

The road of excess leads to the palace of wisdom - William Blake

by talos (mihalis at gmail dot com) on Sun Feb 6th, 2011 at 08:27:53 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Good question. I agree that collective punishment against citizens of a democratic state is justified. But not in every case. Democracy is after all based on individual rights that majority vote cannot nullify. In this case we are talking after all very much about housing, and that is, or at least should be, in the realm of individual rights. (And of course economic collective punishment in practise never punishes collectively)
by kjr63 on Mon Feb 7th, 2011 at 08:06:27 PM EST
[ Parent ]

Display: