Friday, February 17, 2012

Philosophy of Code Geass: Monarchy vs Democracy

           For thousands of years the ancient civilizations of the world have lived under some form of monarchy, whether it was a benevolent king or a blood-thirsty warlord. They were absolute rulers who made all the decisions. Many countries in the present champion the cause for democracy where the burden of decision making is distributed between a group of many people for example Parliament and Congress, but here is the question, is democracy really better than monarchy? Monarchy isn’t so bad as long as there is a good, wise leader, and democracy is for a nation that has people who care about the many decisions that have to be made.
I realize that America is based on the idea of freedom. We fought wars over it countless of times from the Revolutionary war to the Iraq war. We have this deep sense of freedom and individuality ingrained into our very beings, that just talking about communism or monarchy terrifies us to death (the red scare). This is one of the biggest reasons why democracy works so well for us, but is democracy the best form of government?
Monarchy on the other hand is ideal for a more unstable or politically uneducated nation, where only one person rules. This may be beneficial because decisions can be made faster because only one person is making all the decisions and sometimes the ideas and decisions of one man can be better than the ideas and decisions of the majority. For example, back in the days of slavery, the majority of the population thought that slavery was alright, going as far as finding passages in the Bible stating that slavery was allowable (Exodus 22:2-3) but they were wrong (not the bible; the argument that slavery is moral). We now recognize that slavery is an immoral thing but back in the day the leading opinion was that slavery was alright. Thank goodness that some smart, compassionate leaders like Abraham Lincoln and Martin Luther King Jr. opened our eyes to the horrors of slavery and helped abolish it and segregation. I guess the biggest problem is how do you know that the person in office is trustworthy? In the monarchy system, the people can’t chose who the ruler will be, and if the public decides that the leader is unfit, they have to start a civil war and riot on the streets. This can prove dangerous because they may have to fight against the nation’s military that is under the rulers thumb. This is where democracy is superior to monarchy.
In democracy, people elect their rulers from a group of willing candidates. But the question now is will the willing candidates make good leaders. Socrates in The Republic by Plato states that an unwilling ruler is the best ruler because they will not abuse there office by having their own agenda that would benefit only themselves instead of the whole nation.
In a monarchy, the next ruler is predetermined. They are usually the child of the current ruler or a close relative. Because the nation already knows who will be the ruler, the child is taught from early childhood the qualities of being a good ruler. They are taught to put the good of the nation before themselves and how best to do that. They are given enormous responsibility at a young age so they gain experience in leadership. They are primped and preened into the ideal ruler. The current princes of England aren’t lazy couch-potatoes who just enjoy there palaces and extravagant parties. They are prominent leaders in society. In fact Prince William of Cambridge co-pilots a search and rescue helicopter helping ordinary civilian’s every day. This type of job is mandatory to a prince so they already have many accomplishments before they ascend the throne. Would this be a mandatory requirement for an elected official? Did President Obama ever go to war or help his citizens in a life-saving way?
In Code Geass, Emperor Charles is a tyrant. He conquered peaceful nations and brought them into the Holy Britannian Empire, a monarchy. His various children were raised to become leaders and generals to further the Britannian cause. Some like Schneizel, Cornelia, and Lelouch are raised to become military and political strategist while others like Odysseus, Clovis, and Nunnally are sent to be budding rulers or governors of Britannian colonies.  In a monarchy, the children of rulers are raised to be either rulers or people of political or military importance giving them more experience in leadership should one of them become the next emperor.
Briefly comparing the advantages and disadvantages of both democracy and monarchy I have come to that monarchy is the better form of government, but we should be able to overthrow the ruler easily in case they turn out to be a psychotic mass murder like Queen Mary I of England aka Bloody Mary.


  1. I find it interesting that you would find a monarchy as the stronger form of government. I also find it interesting that you chose the UK for your example of a monarchy. It is a constitutional monarchy. The prime minister and parliament that make most of the political decisions, while the royal family only have social influence and ceremonial powers. ( I personally think that any form of government is prone to corruption, but a democracy has more potential of removing it with frequent elections. A pure democracy promotes change, while traditional monarchies are more rigid and are harder to reflect the voice of the people.
    By the way, I like your new theme. It is a lot easier to read your posts.

    1. Not true, "The Queen performs a range of important duties, such as summoning and dissolving Parliament and giving royal assent to legislation passed by the UK Parliament, the Scottish Parliament, the National Assembly for Wales or the Northern Ireland Assembly."

      "The Queen formally appoints important office holders, including the prime minister and other government ministers, judges, officers in the armed forces, governors, diplomats, bishops and some other senior clergy of the Church of England. She also grants peerages, knighthoods and other honours. In instances where people have been wrongly convicted of crimes, she is involved in pardoning them."

      "In international affairs, the Queen (as head of state) has the power to declare war and make peace, to recognise foreign states, to conclude treaties and to take over or give up territory."

      I got this off of the website you cited in the previous comment.

    2. I never said the Queen, herself, didn't have any power, I just said that the Queen doesn't completely control the country as you made it seem in your blog post.

  2. I like how you compared and contrasted the two forms of government in this post. In my opnion democracy is the better choice but I'm pretty biased to the matter because I have lived in the states my whole life.

  3. I agree that democracy is perhaps a flawed system of government, if only because it is ruled by the majority and the majority has been known to be wrong about a lot of things. However, I do not believe that a monarchy is any better. As Winston Churchill once said, "Democracy is the worst form of government, except for all the others..." In other words, while democracy isn't perfect, it's better than all the other options we have. After all, is it really rational to leave all the responsibility of an entire country in the hands of a single person? What happens if the monarch turns out to be psycho, but there are no other viable heirs to take their place? How do we determine who is fit to rule?

    1. Well, in that situation we could do what the kings of old did and find the next blood relation, but I don't like that because how do you know that the candidate didn't just kill the previous leader to gain power. I think that the government should hold an election and have the people decide who the next leader should be. Now you may say that this sounds like democracy and I agree with you. What I want is a combination of democracy and monarchy with it leaning more towards monarchy. Remember, I stated in my blog that there should be an easy way for the people to dethrone the ruler and put a ruler of there choice on the throne. If the ruler that the people like dies and his heir takes over the throne, if the people don’t like him, then they should have the right to dethrone him. Democracy and Monarchy working together for a stronger nation, the best of both worlds.