By Vexen Crabtree 2001
This page is a Left Hand Path look at government, from fascist dictatorships to democracy, from a Satanic point of view. It is an attack on dictatorships and a defence of democracy and multi-layered government systems, i.e. those with a deep, rather than shallow, chain of command. Fascism, a form of government where the State's interests come first, and the people are tools, has potential advantages but those advantages can be better obtained through democratic means and without the disadvantages of dictatorships.
More on Democracy:
Satanic government would be a down-to-Earth government, based on solid logic and pragmatism, not based on idealism or other-worldly ideas. There are more forms of government than either "democratic" or "dictatorship", but these are the only ones I'm looking at here. My personal views are that I hold theocracy to be the worst form of government, and a semi-democratic meritocracy to be the best. But what is the most Satanic form of government?
In a dictatorship the commands of one individual are automatically obeyed by others. Fascist governments are not automatically dictatorships. Dictatorships are recognized by the absence of a system that could be used to replace the dictator no matter how poor they become and where they can't be held accountable for their own policies.
Dictatorships put an entire country under the control of a single individual. Julius Caesar, the original modern dictator, maintained control and gathered increasing power over the Roman Empire (which was previously democratic) by keeping the empire in a state of war during which elections were not held and other hierarchal mechanisms were frozen.
All people have their day and then decline; and a dictator is a person like any other. All dictatorships in history (correct me if I'm wrong) have suffered from decline, paranoia and increasing violence as the dictator realizes he is becoming an increasingly poor leader.
Satanism and Fascism differ on many important points. Satanism is highly individualistic, where a person's skills and talents, character and willpower are the true gauges of worth; and where the ego is championed. As such, Satanism accepts differences of opinion, disputes, strong disagreements, etc, because that's what you get when you bring free-thinking rebels together - plus a bit of fire. Fascism holds that the State is supreme and its importance outweighs the rights of the individual, and that individualism is trumped by race, which are both nonsense ideas. Satanic theory highlights the fickle and self-interesting nature of mankind, and therefore, Satanists cannot accept dictatorships as we know that they also spell trouble for all. Democracy, where the talented rise and the decrepit fall, where politicians are questioned, is better than dictatorships where leaders can descend into madness without being ousted. The only similarities between fascism and Satanism are in (1) style: Both have tended to like red, black and white sharp-edged symbols, and (2) in social ethics: Both prefer more immediate, harsher justice.”
I speak on behalf of Satanists in general when I say that we do not trust Human Nature at all, nor any one person completely. Not even ourselves. Doubt and questioning are at the core of Satan's rebellion; our role model here provides us with a good example of how things should be run. We must always question other people's motives and I for one, trust those in charge no more than I trust any other person.
This mistrust and its inherent aura of competition must always be present within the government; an atmosphere where one person is not critically judged or challenged allows that person, who is running the country in which you live, to freely make mistakes or to descend into madness. Wherever there has been one person in charge, unchallenged, corruption and inefficiency increase. The one thing that we should not accept within governing bodies is entropy. Those who begin to falter should be easily replaced.
“Democratic institutions form a system of quarantine for tyrannical desires.”
Multiple levels of questioning, doubt and political combat are necessary to keep the best, cleverest and most cunning people in charge. Anyone with a decent amount of honesty about Human nature will not permit a dictatorship... and so be it for Satanism. The Satanic government is fast moving, efficient, and its members will take every opportunity to exploit and point out each other's failings, to compete amongst each other. Satanic government is therefore a modified form of democracy.
“Democracy's defining feature - the freedom to hire and fire your government - does not guarantee that countries will make wise choices, or that democracies will be good neighbours. The lesson of the 20th century is that no people is immune from falling under the spell of some hypnotic voice or pernicious doctrine. In 1933 Germans freely elected the Nazi Party, which went on to reduce Europe to rubble. But only the most twisted history could blame democracy rather than dictatorship for the depredations of Hitler, Stalin and Mao Ze-dong.”
So what, in particular, is the biggest flaw of democracy? What can cause democratic countries to make unwise choices and even voluntarily allow monsters to rule? It is simply this: Human stupidity is the biggest challenge to democracy.
If democracy is to work, the electorate need to be informed decisions and evidence-based decisions2. Too often, mass delusion overwhelms good sense. Such problems undermined several early attempts at democracy in Europe in the 18th century3. Founding thinkers such as Aristotle, Fortescue and Machiavelli taught that deliberation (which requires intelligence and knowledge) is a key aspect of democracy4. It is sensible to argue that if you don't understand a topic then you shouldn't vote on it5. But the problem is, many do vote on issues based purely on sound-bites, one-liners, sensationalist newspaper stories and anecdotal evidence6. A "race to the bottom" condition is created whereby parties come into power based on who has the most pithy reactionary statements rather than who has the best policies7.
Such are the issues referred to when commentators worry about "post-truth politics". In a world where reality-TV is orders of magnitude more popular than politician's policies most news reporting centres on interpersonal battles that ought to be kept private. News outlets report trash because it sells; and politics continues a nosedive into rash popularism. If the populace do not soon began to vote with deliberation, then, the entire democratic project runs the risk of failure6.”
There is an obvious solution to poor voting behaviour that has been debated and occasionally employed in history. That is to restrict voting to certain people. But it is so very difficult to judge by qualifications or exams who is an "intelligent" voter. There are many highly educated people who have no qualifications; and many qualified people who are unintelligent and who lack basic knowledge of the world.
Another less stark method is to make the worth of an "intelligent" vote equal to twice that of others. On the face of it, this leads to a more sensible government where dumbed-down campaigns have less affect and therefore trash culture no longer makes democracy hollow. This semi-democratic meritocracy has already been proposed by social theorists down the decades.
“Liberals have expressed particular reservations about democracy not merely because of the danger of majority rule but also because of the make-up of the majority in modern, industrial societies. As far as J. S. Mill was concerned, for instance, political wisdom is unequally distributed and is largely related to education. [...] He proposed a system of plural voting that would disenfranchise the illiterate and allocate one, two, three or four votes to people depending upon their level of education or social position. Ortega y Gasset (1883-1955), the Spanish social thinker, expressed such fears more dramatically in The Revolt of the Masses (1930). Gasset warned that the arrival of mass democracy had led to the overthrow of civilized society and the moral order, paving the way for authoritarian rulers to come to power by appealing to the basest instincts of the masses.”
All you need is a system to sort out "intelligent" people from "dumb" ones. But the search for such a system is what has made the implementation of stratified voting problematic. Any intelligent person knows that it's next to impossible to devise accurate tests. There are biases in-place: the rich can get normally get a better education, and therefore, can control the voting system. It may be that meritocratic stratification of voting leads to a class-divide of power more than there is at present. But the crises of democracy has gotten so bad through the combination of voter apathy and mass ignorance that calls for stratified voting continue, regardless of its weaknesses.
The Church of Satan does not determine the political opinions or actions of any of its members9. However, there is a natural link between Satanism and secularism, as Satanism prides itself on individual freedoms and freethought, so secularism stands for defending those things.
Secularism, promoted by secularists, is the belief that religion should be a private, personal, voluntary affair that does not impose upon other people. Public spaces and officialdom should therefore be religion-neutral. Secularism ensures that religions are treated fairly and that no bias exists for a particular religion, and also that non-religious folk such as Humanists are treated with equal respect. It is the only democratic way to proceed in a globalized world where populations are free to choose their own, varied, religions.
“Our members generally promote the idea that their nation of residence should move towards a secular, pluralist society in which people are free to participate in any religion or philosophy of choice, and that the adherents of these myriad alternatives agree not to coerce others.”
On an anniversary of 9/11 Peter Gilmore wrote again to remind us of the dangers of religious fanaticism and reinforced the need for keeping religion out of politics:
“We Satanists, as well as others who grasp the importance of maintaining a secular society which allows for diversity of belief and non-belief, will recall this grim truth today. Fundamentalist fanatics, regardless of which deity they worship, are the greatest threat to human freedom in our civilization.”
When the masses remain ignorant and stupid, plain democracy is impossible and meaningless. Hollow campaigns do not facilitate the honest voting on government activity. But the stratification of voting bias does not lead to equal votes. But equal votes is the problem, not the answer!. I would declare to all that people are not equal. What a stupid person thinks government should do is less important than what an intelligent person thinks. Unfortunately no system exists that can determine in what way a person needs to be "intelligent" in order for their vote to get a higher status.
A system of exams should precede a vote. If you pass the exam, you can vote. The exam would be on the basics of politics and society, current events and basic knowledge. Or maybe different exams, so that a scientist who is voting on issues of technology or issues of importance to him can take the "science" poll booth test. That way, you have to know something about one area in order to vote. This system would discourage stupid people from voting unless they had a genuine concern or issue, and had not merely been swayed by the political soap opera that trash culture represents politics as.
A form of stratification fixes the leaks that democracy springs when the masses are ignorant and stupid. The tested intelligent electorate should have two votes, the uneducated and inferior should only have one. The present culture in the UK is at such a level of education that democracy has become an empty shell, until education reaches a generally higher level stratification is the least problematic form of democracy. Better to have a functioning unequal democracy rather than a dysfunctional, hollow pseudo-democracy based on simplistic deceit. The former is a little like a meritocracy, whereas the latter is national suicide.
Current edition: 2001 Jun 25
Last Modified: 2016 Dec 08
Parent page: The Description, Philosophies and Justification of Satanism
All #tags used on this page - click for more:
The Economist. Published by The Economist Group, Ltd. A weekly newspaper in magazine format, famed for its accuracy, wide scope and intelligent content. See vexen.co.uk/references.html#Economist for some commentary on this source..
Anderson, M S
(1985) The Ascendancy of Europe 1815-1914. Paperback book. 2nd edition. Published by Pearson Education Limited, Essex, UK. Anderson is Professor Emeritus of International History in the University of London and a fellow of the Royal Historical Society.
Carroll, Robert Todd. (1945-2016). Taught philosophy at Sacramento City College from 1977 until retirement in 2007. Created The Skeptic's Dictionary in 1994.
(2011) Unnatural Acts: Critical Thinking, Skepticism, and Science Exposed!. E-book. Amazon Kindle digital edition. Published by the James Randi Educational Foundation.
(2002) Media Control: The Spectacular Achievement of Propaganda. Paperback book. 2nd edition. Originally published 1991. Current version published by Seven Stories Press, New York USA.
Gilmore, Peter. High Priest of the Church of Satan (as of 2001+).
(2007) The Satanic Scriptures. Hardback book. Published by Scapegoat Publishing, USA. Compendium of texts. Many essays are new editions of older texts by Gilmore.
(2003) Political Ideologies. Paperback book. 3rd edition. Originally published 1992. Current version published by Palgrave MacMillan.
(2000) Sword and Scales: An Examination of the Relationship Between Law and Politics. Paperback book. Published by Hart Publishing Ltd, Oxford, UK. Prof. Loughlin is Professor of Law at the University of Manchester, UK, and Professor of Public Law-elect at the London School of Economics & Political Science, UK.