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The Flag of the World

-G. K. Chesterton, Orthodoxy

This here blog is a glimpse or two or three at the condition of the 'fortress of our family' through the eyes Timothy Goddard, a Christian writer with an unhealthy interest in politics living in the Puget Sound area.

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Tuesday, February 25, 2003


Iraqi Federalism
James Robbins lays out the case for a federalist post-Saddam Iraq marvelously. This is something I've been thinking for a while--that the success of the constitution of the United States is, in large part, due to innovations that could very nearly be called flukes--the bicameral legislature, the electoral college, the two-party system and so on. And yet, as Robbins has reminded me, these weren't really flukes, but were painstakingly reviewed and discussed by Madison and others in the Federalist Papers... which I've just now decided I need to read, soon.
He also points out some of the flaws in the national parliamentary system favored by far too many, especially in regards to new democracies:
A unitary national parliamentary system with proportional representation would on the other hand be highly destabilizing; it would encourage the formation of radical parties based on small electoral percentages, and give no impetus to compromise. The resulting political divisions would make governance problematic, as well as give radical groups permanent national platforms for instigating anti-democratic activity. It is important to avoid Iraq becoming an academic experiment in radical democracy, which is an express-line to dictatorship.

There's lots more stuff there, including a suggestion on dealing with Iraq's oil, and historical precedent for successful regime-change leading to successful federalist democracies.
And based on his envy of this piece, I presume Jacob Levy will have more of the same for us tommorow, which I look forward to.
Agree, disagree, have more information on the topic? Please, feel free to leave a comment. No profanity!

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