Death by Good Intentions

Death by Good Intentions
Vol: 61 Issue: 2 Monday, October 2, 2006

There is an old saying that ‘the road to hell is paved with good intentions.’ And old sayings, as I’ve noted before, become old sayings because they are undeniably true.

The centerpiece of the Bush administration’s foreign policy is its effort to spread democracy across the Middle East as a method of combating terrorism. President Bush is fond of justifying his policy by pointing out the historical fact that no democracy in history has ever gone to war against another democracy.

His theory is based in the fact that in a democracy, the ability to make war is constrained by the population. And the fact that most wars are territorial; that is to say, the majority of wars are rooted in expansionism.

Adolf Hitler launched WWII in Europe to gain ‘lebensraum’ or ‘living space’ for his population. Hirohito’s aim was for Imperial Japan to conquer the Far East to obtain control of the vital raw materials that Imperial Japan lacked in their homeland.

More recently, Saddam Hussein launched the first Gulf War by invading and annexing what he called ‘Province 19’ and the rest of the world called ‘Kuwait.’ The Taliban and al-Qaeda in Afghanistan are bent on conquering the world for Islam.

The idea that democracies do not fight one another is undeniably attractive for those who happen to live in them. Since war between the major democratic powers is extremely unlikely at present, the democratic peace is also intuitively plausible.

It has held true in the cases of Germany and Japan, and therefore, seems convincing enough.

This theory is also, unfortunately, fatally flawed. There is another, more probable reason, for the historical lack of of war between democracies. There have only been a handful of them among a sea of dictatorships.

There is another reason to question the policy of imposing democracies, or even encouraging them, as a method of bringing peace. Pure democracy is little more than mob rule.

The thinking that one can impose, encourage or develop an American-style democracy exposes a fundamental misunderstanding of the American political system that is frankly shocking, coming as it does, from the leader of the Republican Party.

The Republican Party is so-called for its recognition of the fact that America is NOT a democracy, but is, instead, a representative Republic. The power of the government is limited because the Constitution recognizes that certain individual rights are granted and guaranteed by a Creator God.

What God has granted, only God can rescind. If God isn’t real, then neither are our guarantees.

The Founding Fathers were acutely aware of the fact that democracies are imbued with a fatal flaw evident in the transliteration of the Greek words from which our word is derived; it means mob rule.

James Madison, known as the father of the U.S. Constitution, wrote in “Essay #10” of The Federalist Papers: “… 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.”

The United States Constitution does not contain the word democracy. It does “guarantee to every State in this Union a republican form of government….”

Also, when we recite the Pledge of Allegiance to the flag, we say, “to the Republic for which it stands,” and not “to the Democracy.”

The difference between a republic and a democracy was once widely understood in America. The U.S. War Department taught that difference in a training manual (No. 2000-25) published on November 30, 1928. This official U.S. government document stated: “Our Constitutional fathers, familiar with the strength and weakness of both autocracy and democracy, with fixed principles definitely in mind, defined a representative republican form of government. They ‘made a very marked distinction between a republic and a democracy and said repeatedly and emphatically that they had founded a republic.’ “

Someone once explained the difference between a democracy and a Constitutional republic this way:

In a majority-rules democracy, two wolves and a sheep can vote on what is for dinner. In a Constitutional republic, voting on dinner is prohibited by the Constitution and the sheep is well-armed.


So far, the administration has successfully imposed democracies on the Palestinian Authority, the Lebanese government, in Iraq and in Afghanistan.

The Palestinians elected Hamas to represent them. The Lebanese elected Hezbollah. The Iraqis have given political power to Muqtada al Sadr and his Mahdi Army. Afghanistan’s democratic experiment is only working because the majority of the population still lives under the tribal warlord system.

The Palestinian Authority is a perfect example of the fundamental flaws inherent in imposing mob rule as a form of pacification. The first chance the Palestinian people got, they voted for like-minded representation, and became the first democratically elected Islamic terrorist state.

Yasser Arafat used Islam, he didn’t believe it. He also used Christianity with equal facility when it suited his purposes. Arafat made a big deal out of attending midnight Mass in Bethlehem every Christmas.

Arafat’s religion wasn’t Islam, it was nationalistic political terror. But since Islam embraces terror as a legitimate tool for converting the infidels, it was useful to him. What somehow escaped both Bill Clinton and later, George Bush, was that the majority of Islamics put Islam ahead of nationalism.

The first chance they got, they voted for Islam, not nationhood. The results should have been predictable indeed, they WERE predictable.

(I predicted them, as long time members of the Omega Letter are well aware. And I am no genius.)

Fatah’s goal of nationhood became secondary to Hamas’ goal of annihilating Israel. And now, Fatah and Hamas are embroiled in civil war.

Israel understood this, which is why Ariel Sharon did a 180 degree reversal and agreed to pull Israelis out of harm’s way in Gaza. To allow Islam’s darker nature to run its course. Now, instead of killing Israelis, they are killing each other.

To a degree, the imposition of democracy in Iraq is accomplishing the same thing in the war on terror. Iraq is up to its neck in terrorists who are too busy fighting each other to mount much of an effective assault against the American homeland.

The attacks that ARE being perpetrated against America are aimed at the only convenient American targets available. American soldiers, Marines, sailors and airmen, who are vastly better equipped to defend themselves and bring destruction back to the enemy than airline passengers or office workers.

But the problem with the strategy is that it doesn’t bring peace, it merely redirects the war, temporarily, away from the American homeland. In the end, it creates new and more deadly anti-American alliances.

The problem with pure democracy is that it has no rules. It puts no more limits on the power of the federal government than those desired by the majority of its population. America’s Constitutional Republican system limits the power of government, regardless of the will of the majority. It is based on trusting in a loving God. To work, it must also believe that loving God exists.

Once God becomes a myth, one god is as good as another. Faith in God is replaced by faith in the system, and America’s system, apart from God, is just another democracy. One “having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof.” (2nd Timothy 3:5)

“The American People” are supreme, and that is where our political faith resides; in democracy as embodied by “the American People”.

“And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient.” (Romans 1:28)

It is fair to say that the more democratic one’s worldview is, the less one likes retaining God in their knowledge. God opposes abortion, gay rights, the destruction of the family, and endorses prayer.

“Being filled with all unrighteousness, fornication, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, debate, deceit, malignity; whisperers, Backbiters, haters of God, despiteful, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents, Without understanding, covenantbreakers, without natural affection, implacable, unmerciful:” (Romans 1:29-31)

Which gives rise to another myth: that imposing an Islamic democracy will lead to peace. It isn’t faith in democracy that guarantees peace, it is faith in the God-given guarantees on which the American Republic operates. Remove God, and all you have left is democracy.

Democracy embraces as much of what Paul outlines above as the majority is willing to accept.

Allah guarantees perpetual war until all the world is under Islamic rule. It should be no surprise, then, that Islamic democracy reflects Allah’s nature. And that may well be America’s undoing.

Death by good intentions.

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About Pete Garcia

Christian, father, husband, veteran, pilot, and sinner saved by grace. I am a firm believer in, and follower of Jesus Christ. I am Pre-Trib, Dispensational, and Non-Denominational (but I lean Southern Baptist).

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