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Part II: African reality--Why pseudo-democracies in the end fail

tennis court oath - 

The Tennis Court Oath was a declaration of the Rights of Man and the Citizen which led to the French Revolution. The citizens wished to air their grievances in their meeting hall but on the morning of June 20, they found they had been locked out, so they met at the nearby royal tennis court, as shown above.


by Joseph Earnest May 12, 2014


Newscast Media HOUSTON, TexasThe word Democracy comes from the Greek word demokratia originating in Athens. Demokratia literally means kratos (the power) demos (people) or power of the people.  Democracy in Athens put the community first. In Most African nations, demokratia is a model of what democracy could be, but not of whom it could be for.


So often leaders will claim that power belongs to the people, but if that were true, the will of the majority to exercise that power would be respected as a sign of good will by the leader. The word "power" has to be properly defined as it pertains to a democracy since there are five different terms in the Greek language that mean power.


The first word for power is sthenos, which means force or strength. The second word for power is dunamis, which is power placed in a person by a more powerful entity. It is often used to describe the resurrection power or the power placed in Christians to overcome adversity.  The third is exousia, which means to act in authority or jurisdiction. This type of power mostly occurs in the legal world and in commerce, where someone has the authority to issue a permit, or a lawmaker having jurisdiction to listen to a case. The fourth is megaleioths, meaning greatness or awesome, as in the greatness of God.  The fifth one is kratos—this is the power that is being referred to in this series.  


Kratos means manifest power, as in the power to vote or influence the outcome of an undertaking. It is the type of power that is direct and participatory since man by nature is a political animal. Yet in pseudo-democracies, people who become threats to those in power tend to be silenced. In sub-Saharan Africa most of the countries have silenced their domestic media, or placed burdens upon media practitioners to prevent them from exercising their kratos. In academia, the intellectuals are often looked at as threats and are either underpaid or not paid at all in their vocations, while those who practice privately eventually move to other parts of the Continent where their intellect is appreciated and can thrive.


The concept of democracy was first developed in ancient Egypt and was referred to as Ma'at (pronounced: Mah—aat). Ma'at means good governance or truth and justice.  Because the Greeks were taught philosophy by the native Egyptians, who were actually Black, they were persecuted and even killed, since philosophy was a strange and foreign teaching in Greece.  Socrates was sentenced to death for corrupting the youth, when he started engaging in philosophy. Later on Athens admitted the death of Socrates was, and still is, one of the greatest injustices to have been committed upon mankind in the classical era.


Shown below is a statue of an African philosopher who originally held a scroll in the right hand.  The hand was sawed off in order to deny giving Africans credit that they introduced philosophy into Western civilization, and were actually the ones who taught the Greeks who are falsely credited with this discipline.


The wise men in Africa were called Sages, while those in Persia were called Magi, and in India they were referred to as Brahmin. Greece's wise men were referred to as Sophists. In their day they were called Sophoi or "lovers of wisdom"--philosophoi, from which the word philosopher comes.


Now that the foundation has been laid showing the origin of democracy and how it is supposed to function, we will use Greece, to illustrate why pseudo-democracies always fail.


At the height of the Persian empire, Darius I led his Persian army to attack Greece. Under the general Miltiades (550-489 B.C.), 9,000 Athenians and 1,000 allies  from Platea attacked the Persians and won a smashing victory, inflicting 6,400 Persian casualties and suffering only 192.  A messenger was sent who ran to Athens with the message, "Rejoice, we conquer!" This is the basis of the marathon race which is 26 milesthe same distance that the Greek messenger covered.


Persia sought a rematch.  After Darius's death in 486 B.C. his son Xerxes decided to attack Greece on both land and sea. Athens was led by the general Themistocles (525-460 B.C.), while a small Spartan army was led by King Leonidis with only 300 men who fought to their death.


It seemed as though Persia had won for a while.  The Persian army decided to march to Athens, but the Athenians abandoned the city and used the island of Salamis as a disinformation lure.  Themistocles manipulated the Persian fleet to fight in the narrow strip between Athens and Salamis.  The result was a crushing defeat of Persia before Xerxes's very own eyes. What!


Under Spartan leadership, the Greeks had united and defeated the Persians on land at Platea (479 B.C.), and at sea the Persian fleet was defeated off the Anatolian coast near Mycale. Not only did Persia fail to conquer Greek mainland, but also lost its eastern Aegian empire.


Because the Spartans won the ground war, they insisted upon occupying all the important offices when Greece united after the fall of the Persian empire.  Spartans were soldiers who lacked the depth of intellect and sophistication of the well-schooled Athenians, whom they excluded from almost every important government position.  The Spartan military elite were very heavy-handed in the way they ruled their fellow Greeks, a behavior that would come back to haunt them.


The Athenians, who were masters of politics, commerce, philosophy, the sciences and oratory, decided to just sit and wait the Spartans out. Athens would later dominate the Western world in Comedy, Drama, Tragedy, Poetry, Sculpture, Architecture and the entire visual arts, since they now had time to refine themselves.


In fact it was after this period that Greece produced its greatest classical writer Menander, who wrote plays like, The Boastful Soldier, The Clever Slave, The Inept Young Man, The Sweet Maiden and the Old Miser.  His writings were so realistic and could not be distinguished from real life, a contemporary of his was prompted to write:"O, Menander and Life, which of you imitated the other?"


Meanwhile, Sparta engaged in fruitless wars. The Greek city-states that had allowed Sparta to rule over them, now bitterly regretted doing so. (This phenomenon is also currently evident in Africa).


United by a common enemy, Corinth, Athens, Thebes, and believe it or not, Persia, turned on Sparta in 395 B.C. Thebes emerged as Sparta's greatest threat. Thebes united more city-states of Boeotia, under the brilliant Theban leaders Epaminondas and Pelopidas.  The Spartan army was eventually crushed and completely driven out of Greece and the helots (peasant workers) that had been held captive by Sparta were freed.


What caused the Greeks to turn against Sparta was that Spartan rich government officials preferred to even get richer by concentrating wealth in fewer hands, as is the case in most African nations. Nothing better demonstrates the fatal excess of individualism in the pseudo-democracy of classical Greece, and the absence of cooperative virtues, than the period when Sparta ruled over mainland Greek city-states.


This brings us to the picture at the very top of this page called the "Tennis Court Oath." Out of it came the French Revolution, because French citizens felt their government had neglected its people, viewed them with contempt, engaged in corruption and was hindering the people from realizing their potential.  The result of the gathering inside the royal tennis court after the people had been locked out of their meeting hall was miraculousit created a paradigm shift and extinguished the old order that was extremely regimented and structured.

Find out in Part III how the Tennis Court Oath relates to the African reality>>



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Related stories:

Part I: African reality is a product of pseudo democracy

Part II: African reality is a product of pseudo democracy

Part III: African reality is a product of pseudo democracy

Part IV: African reality is a product of pseudo democracy

Part V: African reality is a product of pseudo democracy 











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