How Long Do We Have?

The philosophers and long past history tell us ...

At about the time when the original thirteen American states adopted their new constitution in 1787, Alexander Tytler, a Scottish history professor at the University of Edinburgh, had this to say about the decline and fall of the Athenian Republic some 2,000 years earlier:

"A democracy is always temporary in nature; it simply cannot exist as a permanent form of government. A democracy will continue to exist up until the time that voters discover they can vote themselves generous gifts from the public treasury. From that moment on, the majority always vote for the candidates who promise the most benefits from the public treasury, with the result that every democracy will finally collapse due to loose fiscal policy, which is always followed by a dictatorship. The average age of the world's greatest civilizations from the beginning of history, has been about 200 years. During those 200 years, those nations always progressed through the following sequence:

1. From bondage to spiritual faith;
2. From spiritual faith to great courage;
3. From courage to liberty;
4. From liberty to abundance;
5. From abundance to complacency;
6. From complacency to apathy;
7. From apathy to dependence;
8. From dependence back into bondage."

Socrates (470-399 BC) was a true philosopher because he was willing to die for the truth. In his pursuit of truth he was asking questions in Athens, and in this process exposed ignorance and devious designs of some influential people. They resented this, and decided to get rid of him. Socrates was formally accused of impiety, and condemned to death. His friends, among them Plato (427-347 BC), provided an opportunity for escape, but Socrates declined. He remained true to his conviction, stating: 
               'U n e x a m i n e d   l i f e   i s   n o t    w o r t h   l i v i n g'.
         The corrupt society that did not tolerate hearing the truth did not last much longer, and Athens was ruined. It is a historical fact that all civilizations that refused to listen to philosophers have vanished. It is impossible for falsehood to last.

It is believed by some pundits that the United States is now, 223 years after the signing of the Declaration of Independence, "somewhere between the complacency and apathy phases of Tytler's definition of democracy, with some forty percent of the nation's population already having reached the governmental dependency phase."
The rest of the Western free and democratic world is either leading the way or following close behind.
History always tends to repeat itself.

Thomas Jefferson: “A democracy is nothing more than mob rule, where fifty-one percent of the people may take away the rights of the other forty-nine.”