Dictatorship: Such an Efficient Form of Government

From the standpoint of efficiency, dictatorship is attractive. No lengthy election campaigns. No disagreement among the dictator’s supporters. No troubling scrutiny from a questioning press.

After a period of wars and uncertainty, some populations welcome a strong man (usually a man) like Hitler, who will end strife and allow citizens more certainty to go about their lives.

The problem is that even the most patriotic strongman is often corrupted by the power he possesses. He will begin to believe that he has all knowledge and that everything he does is ordained by a higher reality. He often attempts to pass power to family members and close friends, founding, in reality, a family fief.

No legislature or judiciary holds a dictator in check. The progress he might make when first taking office dissipates into cronyism and nepotism, a selfish dividing of a country’s resources among a few top contenders.

Representative government, by contrast, can be messy and time consuming, but over the long run has the potential to better serve the citizens.

However, the disadvantage of representative government is that, if it is to work, competent people must be elected. For that to happen, the electorate must be informed about issues.

In other words, effective government is more about us, not the leaders. It has to do with the responsibility we take or don’t take as citizens to learn and vote intelligently.

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