So, I've been in a political theory class this semester. Absolutely fascinating, I recommend it.
In one of my readings in Democracy in America by Tocqueville, I came across this line in a discussion of democracy
"The great privilege of the Americans is to be able to have repairable mistakes."
I found myself agreeing in principle, but realizing that we aren't really repairing mistakes anymore. We're doing it again only harder, or doing the exact opposite, ignoring the bit where the best course of action is sometimes, perhaps even often, doing nothing instead. Just a thought, particularly in regards to the election we just had. We had a remarkable turnover, but that really doesn't repair any of the mistakes that have gone by. The important stuff for that is still to come.
The other thing that occurs to me reading this (Vol 1 Pt 2 chap 6 for those following along at home) is that Tocqueville's criticisms of Aristocracy and Democracy BOTH come together to make modern law really, really bad. On the one hand, we have a handful of career politicians who are functionally aristocracy. They are very good at directing law to suit themselves and their agendas, which, incidentally, are generally not so good. Yet, since we are still in a democratic system, there is lots of law built to appeal to the many disparate interests of congress. This all but inevitably leads to bad law.
In short. Aristocracy leads to effective law to a bad end. Democracy generally leads to crappy law to a good end. Aristocracy manipulating democracy leads to bad law to a bad end.
I may post more little thoughts like this as they come up. Or not. We'll see.