- Martini, why do you find it repugant? I am not advocating any position or form of government over another. I am merely discussing the basic elements of governance in a way to provoke thought and discussion. What about that is repugnant?
What's repugnant is the proposition that people suffering under an oppressive regime have only themselves to blame for not overthrowing it. That proposition is inherent in your claim.
I am merely deconstructing popularly held beliefs concerning governance for the sake of discussion. Where do you see pure democracy anywhere in history? How is this any different than pure communism, besides property rights? I'd suggest that the term democracy is the result of a somewhat fallacious buildup of societal hope for what the American Republic could (or some would say should) be.
For the sake of discussion it is helpful to group governments into types. If all governments are democracies then that's not a very useful grouping, is it? How would you differentiate the governments of Sweden and North Korea? If "there is no such thing as a non-democracy" then what terms do you suggest we use?
How is this different than the United States? Say I want to smoke pot. The government says no. I can ignore the government, to what effect? Threat of prosecution. I can ignore the prosecution to what effect? Threat of violence from police. I can resist the power of the police to what effect? Ultimately, death. At some point along the equation I can give in to the government and choose to recognize it's power, or I can die. This is true in ALL governments. (I don't use any drugs or alcohol - for the record)
This, of course, is silly in the extreme. If you "ignore" the government, they simply come and arrest you and put you in jail. If you RESIST the power of the government, they may, and or may not, kill you. See Ed Brown for details. But it is unlikely, unless you push the issue.
You equate passivity with choice. To some extent, you are correct. And we can't have it both ways; for everyone who says that the people of, say, Russia were forced to submit, there is someone who says the people of Germany should have revolted (despite the fact that much the same sort of thing would have occurred). But there is a difference between actively participating in a process, and passively accepting a process. It's when people understand that they prefer the former to the latter that dictatorships tend to die.