"We owe to democracy, at least in part, the regime of discussion with which we live; we owe it to the principal modern liberties: those of thought, press and association. And the regime of free discussion is the only one which permits the ruling class to renew itself… which eliminates that class quasi-automatically when it no longer corresponds to the interests of the country."
by:
Gaetano Mosca
(1858-1941) Italian political scientist, journalist and public servant
Source:
Partiti e Sindacata nella crisi del regime parlamentare, 1961
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Reader comments about this quote:
I lawfully owe nothing to democracy. Democracy's ruling oligarchy does not discuss with sovereign individuals. The principals of democracy (modern or otherwise) are absolutely antithetical to liberty(s). Whereas democracy corresponds to the interests of the country, a representative republic corresponds to the rights of the individual sovereigns.
 -- Mike, Norwalk     
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    Our country's brilliant founders rejected mob rule (democracy) and mandated a republic in Article 4, Section 4. More info: http://www.diffen.com/difference/Democracy_vs_Republic
     -- Durham, Birmingham, AL     
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    Don't get hung up on the word democracy. The American republican form of government incorporates democratic processes -- voting on bills, juries, councils, etc. is integral. The corruption has been usurping the specific jurisdictions of each branch of government, not the process of voting.

    With respect to the quote, I do believe "we owe to democracy, at least in part, the regime of discussion with which we live; we owe it to the principal modern liberties: those of thought, press and association." I think so. In a democratic-republic, freedom of speech is an empty phrase if there is no dialogue.
     -- E Archer, NYC     
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