This is why we can't have nice things.

I'm really sick of elitism.

I know other people are, too. I don't expect to be making any groundbreaking statements - I never do; I specialise in common sense.

But I'm really sick of people who complain about how the ordinary person on the street isn't sufficiently advanced and enlightened for any kind of free society. Instead, they say, we should all be subject to someone else's authority for a strong society - or who knows what could go wrong?! Heavens, people might agitate for things like equality and a society that doesn't exploit people!

Well, quite apart from the morality of an autocratic state, there are obviously problems with the idea that a despot makes for a better ruler - namely, there is no evidence that a single ruler, or a few rulers, are better than letting everyone weigh in on an issue. In fact, concentrating all the power in the hands of just one person is probably not a good idea, as the needs of an entire state are then subject to the whims of one person - and if they make a mistake who's going to dare to stand up to someone that powerful? Probably none of the court, that's for sure. Moreover, the leadership of such a state might be highly unstable: one person holds a huge amount of power and wealth, and a lot of people are going to covet that. If you know anything about any kind of dynasty you can see where this is going - there will be a lot of assassinations and political manoeuvring as people vie for the top job. Hell, if the leadership's hereditary expect to have people who don't know what they're doing and even children on the throne.

So yes - there goes the idea that an autocracy is necessarily better than a democracy. Now to the idea that ordinary people are too stupid to actually make decisions.

Well, I'm a misanthrope. Bears shit in woods, I grumble about how people are stupid. This doesn't mean I magically exempt myself from being stupid - I consider myself ignorant and irrational. But neither do I think people are inherently unintelligent; I'm a misanthrope because I see what people can do (save the world) and see what they actually spend their time doing (watching TOWIE). In other words, while I know people can be stupid, I also know they can do great things - and that makes me believe that people are capable of working together as equals rather than needing to be herded.

Before people are taught to be submissive (and they are), they're pretty good at showing initiative. Then it's drilled out of them at school, and then it has to be drilled back into them again. It's a stupid system - but I digress. People are not born unquestioning, obedient, and passive; they are made that way. Equally, it's quite possible to make them start thinking at a very early age - and that's what we should be doing rather than assuming people are too stupid to rule.

I should put a disclaimer here: I'm not saying that education is a panacea. Quite apart from people not wanting to learn, you may also have problems with illiteracy, difficulty of getting educational materials or schools, and so forth - and that's without considering education as a lifelong process rather than one that starts at nursery and ends when you go into full-time work. And I'm not even going to go into education only being the first step (albeit a very important one)...What I am saying is that education turns the passive into the active and the submissive into the rebellious. People are not born inherently incapable of ruling themselves, and if we encouraged them to actually think for themselves instead of getting someone else to do it for them we might be closer to a free society.