Plato's Ideas of an Inefficient Democracy

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Plato's Ideas of an Inefficient Democracy

Plato's Republic describes precisely how he feels about society and what the true meaning of justice is within that society. Plato feels that a city can only function if each of pieces does its part and nothing else. He also thinks that a perfect society should run on a distinct social scale. This scale descends in the order from the philosopher kings to the guardians to the craftspeople. His ideal society would be run in the form of an aristocracy where the philosopher kings use the guardians to ultimately rule the lowly craftspeople. He deems that justice fits nicely into an aristocratic community. Plato does not believe, however, that a democratic society is beneficial or even has the possibility of being prosperous because of its setup.

Plato thinks that along with being a highly ineffective form of government, democracy also stems from another governmental status that is just as terrible. He believes that a money-focused, oligarchic society can eventually form into a democracy without warning. He says that the richest men within the society will lend money with high interest rates and encourage the borrowers to spend all of the money as quickly as possible. In this theory the debtors will go bankrupt and become enraged with the wealthy men and form a revolt to kill all of them. Once this occurs the people will give equal rights to everyone in hopes that the vicious cycle doesn't take place again.

Plato basically makes a mockery of a democratic society while discussing the matter of politics in the Republic. He believes that a democracy is ruled by the general craftspeople of the community and is full of diversity. Due to the variety of people and aspects that mak...

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...a very set idea of a perfect, aristocratic society that in essence is supposed to benefit the entire community. He feels that only select individuals should have the chance to rule the State. What he doesn't consider though, is that the majority of the rulers in a democracy are qualified in ways that he doesn't actually acknowledge as legitimate. The leaders of democracies are confident and successful in the roles they play within their own specific societies. I think that Plato is mistaken by only comparing their ruling abilities to the standards in that of a tyranny. He bases most of his ideas only on a society that he knows and doesn't allow for variety or change in his thoughts. Much of his argument is repetitive and unresearched so I believe that without stronger opposition he would ultimately lose the battle in defending an aristocracy over a democracy.
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