Supposedly, dictatorship is one-man
rule of a state. But that doesn't make sense and may be physically impossible.
It's a bogey-man idea sold to the public as a distraction by insider
factions who wannabe dictators themselves and who, because they're rich
and own the media, can easily sell ideas to the public. The dictator
myth gives the suckers a lot of dummy enemies to punch and tackle and
squint at instead of them.
But one man can't rule a state alone. Maybe
one man can single-handedly rule a religious commune, or an organization,
or a large household, or a gang of outlaws, or a small ship's crew,
or a clique. Maybe. But one man can't rule a state alone.
thought and said that the only public office I'd want would be that
of absolute dictator of the world. But, making up workable details for
a book about such a world-state (in a book - a story - I mean fiction),
I've had to imagine myself with some kind of irresistible, near magic
scientific power, and I've had to imagine circumstances that make me
personally unreachable and untouchable - an invisible, anonymous dictator
giving orders from a secret hide-out.
I'm not saying there's no dictatorship.
But there's no one-man dictatorship of a state with millions of citizens
or even thousands or hundreds of citizens. Maybe with dozens. I'll concede
that Robinson Crusoe was the dictator of his island until somebody else
arrived. But all the supposed one-man dictatorships in the world are
run by factions with one famous member, and the most close-to-total
dictators aren't human. Not counting Mother Nature and her daughter
Genetica, the most potent dictators are some ideologies and, in America at least, economic necessity.
I'm guessing most of my readers assume
that dictatorship is wrong. It's supposedly the opposite of democracy,
which (in any country like or controlled by America) is supposedly right. There are some very astute and knowledgeable
political philosophers outside of and even in America who don't agree.
Obviously, I wouldn't be imagining the details of my possible novel
if I agreed. There are millions of suffering citizens of "western-style
free-enterprise democracies" in Latin America modeled on America who
wrongly believe Fidel Castro is a dictator and wish they could have
a dictator like him. If you think they're wrong to wish that, you probably couldn't
convincingly explain why. Popular assumptions about dictatorship
are religious assumptions, and like other religious assumptions, their
validity goes without explaining.
Most people probably don't really agree with their
own assumption. In most religions, God is a dictator, and, if you're
religious, you probably think that's OK. Most actual dictatorships are
factional, i.e. dictatorships by church or by class or by insiders,
which is usually OK with the core congregations, anyway, and usually
with their eagerly pious followers. And the brutal dictatorship of economic
necessity in a capitalist society, which is obviously OK with rich Americans
and, unexplainably (except that their thoughts are so thoroughly dictated),
seems to be OK with poor Americans, too, maybe including you.
a new idea or two for you, if the twin dictatorship of traditional piety
and political correctness doesn't forbid you to pay attention. The world's
worst problems aren't either democracy deficit or dictatorship surplus.
They're ecological collapse, majority poverty, war, pain, and social
and political chaos. The most effective state, dictatorship or not,
is the most logically and efficiently organized state. And the most
desirable state is the most effectively benign - the state that honestly
and actually aims to and does make life as good as it can be for each
and every citizen.
Fear that the spectre of social and economic equality
suddenly lurks behind my words may have triggered a mental shutdown
for you just now, because you've been taught by the minions of insiders
(who are religiously carefully logical organizers themselves for their
own benefit) to shun both logic and organization and even equality as
totalitarian, and, though you probably couldn't define totalitarian
on a bet or explain what's wrong with social and economic equality,
either, I may have just lost you to the dictator of your choice.
hold on for just one more paragraph, while I dictate that means (if
they don't hurt) really AREN'T as important as ends. Neither "freedom"
nor democracy nor even existential self-determination
are worth a shit if you're in agony. Epicurus rightly dictated that
happiness and the absence of pain are the most logical philosophical
(and civil) ends. There's lots of pain in America, as well as in Saudi
Arabia. Meanwhile, the only state I know of where almost everyone lives
a good, comfortable, moderately pleasureful, minimally painful, (actually
Epicurean) life is on the somewhat democratic and somewhat dictatorial
but very well and logically organized island of Cuba.