libyans on democracy: meh

“National survey reveals Libyans would prefer one-man-rule over democracy”

“The first ever National Survey of Libya suggests that the population would still prefer one-man-rule over alternatives like democracy. The publication of the survey of over 2,000 Libyan people coincides with the anniversary of the first protests triggered by rebel forces against Gaddafi, which ended after months of fighting when he was killed in October 2011. Despite the widespread hatred of the Gaddafi regime, this survey of public opinion reveals that in five years’ time 35 percent would still like a strong leader or leaders for the country. Only 29 percent of those surveyed said they would prefer to live in a democracy….”

oxford research international

previously: democracy-in-libya schedule

(note: comments do not require an email. not.)

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16 Comments

  1. And yet the Washingtonian/biblical fallacy will persist, “let us make him (them) in our own image, our own likeness….’. And this applies to most edicts coming out that swamp on the Potomac (and the Thames and Seine, for that matter)

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  2. @wes – “And yet the Washingtonian/biblical fallacy will persist, “let us make him (them) in our own image, our own likeness….”

    it’s just bizarre, isn’t it? just goes to show: people will believe A.N.Y.T.H.I.N.G. (in this case that americans/other westerners will believe it when told that all peoples around the world are just yearning for democracy.)

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  3. “National survey reveals Libyans would prefer one-man-rule over democracy”

    That can’t be right ….

    We should go in there and kill a bunch of them so that they can experience democracy. Then we should send a bunch of CIA operatives to Africa and tell them how great democracy in Libya is so they can over run it and experience democracy. Our operatives can teach the africans how to register to vote multiple times so that they can triple the experience of democracy in the country. Democracy is great. In a democracy with your multiple votes, you can appropriate the riches of the country for yourself and destroy it like a parasite destroying a host.

    USA! USA! USA!

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  4. @luke – “Remarkable. Have there been similar polls in other countries?”

    yes, looks like there have been. i just found one done in iraq in 2004 by the same oxford research group. at the time, 41.6% of iraqis said they thought iraq needed a democracy in 5 years time (same question as asked of the libyans) [see pg. 18 here – pdf].

    mind you, 21.1% thought that the new iraq should be modelled after the united arab emirates, the second largest group after those that thought the new iraq needed no model (23.6%). only 6.5% though that the new iraq ought to be modelled after the u.s. [pg. 12]

    edit: forgot. 80% of the iraqis said they wanted a centralized state whereas 14% wanted a federal system. an even higher percentage of iraqi arabs wanted a centralized state. [see here]

    lemme check to see if they’ve done a survey of egypt.

    i previously posted about some results for egypt from the world values survey of 2008. at that time, 84% did not like the idea of having a strong leader and 89.3% said they would prefer a democracy. again, tho, 85% of them thought that islam’s influence on politics is a positive thing. i wonder how they (and the iraqis) feel about things nowadays.

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  5. hmmm … couldn’t find an oxford research survey of egypt, but here’s a pew survey done in 2010.

    at that time, 59% of muslims in egypt believed that democracy was preferable to any other kind of government. (just 42% in pakistan.) 22% said that in some circumstances a non-democratic government could be preferable. that correlates with the world values survey from 2008 in which 56.6% of egyptians thought military rule would be good.

    still, 59% of egyptian muslims going for democracy is a lot more than the 29% in libya — twice as many, in fact.

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  6. It’s a paradox. If given the chance to vote for democracy, most Libyans would vote against it. If the poll was translated into law, then they would get what they want through a process they didn’t want. If their own majority opinion was ignored, then they would have gotten what they don’t want – by getting what they want. Or something like that.

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  7. @jay – “If given the chance to vote for democracy, most Libyans would vote against it. If the poll was translated into law, then they would get what they want through a process they didn’t want. If their own majority opinion was ignored, then they would have gotten what they don’t want – by getting what they want. Or something like that.”

    heh! (^_^) (hang on a sec … i have to wipe off all the coffee i just spewed out onto the keyboard/monitor after reading that …. (~_^) that’s the funniest thing i read all week, jay!)

    upside-down-and-backwards. but that’s how most of human behavior seems to be if you ask me.

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  8. actually hbd* (asterisk is silent) jay makes sense, kind of.

    people wish for something not realizing the immediate effect. it’s the “there ought to be a law against” effect/ideology.

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  9. @rjp – “jay makes sense, kind of.”

    oh, i think jay makes sense alright. it’s just that most (prolly all) groups of humans don’t. (~_^)

    in this case, what the majority of libyans say does make sense — they don’t want democracy. it’s just some (too many!) stooopid westerners who think that they do — or that they ought to — and maybe we should shove it down their throats ’cause we know what’s best for them (and everybody). *facepalm*

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  10. I wonder what they understand “democracy” to mean. I’m not even sure I know.

    Does it mean voting? Wow, great. We vote for whom we are told to vote.

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  11. @hail – “Does it mean voting?”

    i would guess most people probably think of being able to vote, yeah.

    @hail – “Wow, great. We vote for whom we are told to vote.”

    if not that, then your options are between tweedle-dee and tweedle-dum. =/ (i think i’d rather vote for one of those guys, actually!)

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  12. HBDchick,
    Even states that no one would consider “democracies” had voting mechanisms. Cuba has always had voting. The USSR had voting. Another problem is the one you raise, about who chooses whom is on the ballot. There are still others.

    Maybe those Arabs are more clever than I’d have thought, and understand ‘Democracy’ to be a euphemism for “a Capitalist-Liberal system”…which is a valid interpretation in the way we use it.

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  13. @hail – Maybe those Arabs are more clever than I’d have thought, and understand ‘Democracy’ to be a euphemism for ‘a Capitalist-Liberal system’…which is a valid interpretation in the way we use it.”

    could be, could be. certainly i think in my own mind the “capitalist-liberal system” kinda pops up automatically when i think of a democratic system, even though that shouldn’t necessarily follow. definitely when i use the terms “democracy” or “democratic” i’m usually referring to/thinking of a modern, liberal democracy — unless i’m specifically talking about ancient athens or something.

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