Seems Everybody's Legit but China
Americans and Westerners are fond of stating that China's government is illegitimate because its power doesn't derive 'from the people', the US apparently telling the world that any government not constituted by a US-defined standard is "illegitimate".
This seems a childish claim of "Only my way is right", apparently founded on nothing more than American supremacist ideology. Americans are only 5% of the world's population. Who are they to claim the role as sole arbiters of legitimate government?
We haven't many kingdoms left, but where does Prince Ranier of Monaco derive his power? From 'the people'? No. But on what basis will you claim he is an 'illegitimate' ruler?
If your only defense is that Monaco doesn't do things the way you do them, that's absurd just on the face of it. Monaco, and indeed every country, has the right to whatever government system it wants.
The US certainly recognises the 'Kingdom' of Saudi Arabia, but where does it derive its power and legitimacy? Certainly not from the people. The US government and media studiously - and hypocritically - avoid facing this issue.
Iran once had a well-functioning democracy led by Mossadegh, a man dearly loved by his people. By any standards, there would surely have been no dispute about the legitimacy of this government.
But then, miffed because Iran planned to nationalise its oil industry, the US sent in the CIA to destabilise the country and overthrow the government, after which the US installed Shah Reza Pehlavi, one of modern history's more brutal dictators.
This raises a question we would like to present to Hillary Clinton: On a scale of 0 to 10, how would you rank the 'legitimacy' of your Iranian dictatorship?
In past decades, the US has overthrown at least 13 functioning democracies and installed dictatorships that were more amenable to US corporations plundering their country.
In recent decades, the US and its CIA have destabilised and overthrown governments in more than 45 separate nations, in each case to install a dictator willing to oppress, terrify, torture and kill hundreds of thousands of civilians in the name of freedom and human rights.
In Nicaragua, with the assistance and instruction of Arthur Bliss Lane, the U.S. ambassador to Nicaragua, Anastasio Somoza orchestrated the assassination of Augusto Sandino, creating a US-supported dictatorship that lasted almost 40 years.
If we change the names, we can produce a very long and identical list of coups that resulted in brutal, long-term dictatorships, in all cases US-sponsored, trained, funded and protected.
On the same note, and more recently, the US used the CIA, with the help of internet media, to destabilise almost two dozen nations in Eastern Europe, the Middle East and Africa, in the hope of overthrowing their resident governments and installing dictators more amenable to US interests.
We would like to ask Mrs. Clinton: How do you rank the "legitimacy" of all these dictatorships your government created? In none of the above cases did any power flow from the people.
Perhaps I'm missing something important, but it seems the US standard for determining legitimacy of government would appear to be nothing more than an over-burden of simple hypocrisy.
How are Western democracies considered 'legitimate' when they seldom if ever represent even half of their populations?
In Canada's last election the Conservative Party garnered less than 40% of the votes, but obtained a majority government based on distribution. Since only 60% of the population voted, the government has the support of less than 1/4 of the people, and is enacting policies and legislation that 75% of the population do not want.
In Western democracies we often see voter turnout of only 30% to 40%, meaning that even if one party collects all the votes it still disenfranchises two-thirds of the population. France's next President will have been chosen by less than 20% of the people.
On what basis can we claim legitimacy for a government that is unwanted by - and is strongly opposed by - 75% or 80% of its people?
Given the extent of this hypocrisy on the part of the US, there is little point in continuing this debate. China's government is what it is, and is not planning on going away anytime soon.
In any case, China's government is nobody else's business, and neither China nor any other nation have recognised the US in its role as self-appointed arbiter of legitimacy or anything else.
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