We in England have always lived under an aristocracy and a monarchy for many thousands of years – we still do today. Each and every county of England had it’s War Lord (Baron etc.) to which 98 per cent of the people were bonded slaves to the land. With growing industrialisation many of these bonded slaves – flocked to the towns and cities finding work – living in appalling conditions.
A new group of rich were created – having made their money at of industry and commerce – who then went on to build fine houses – send their kids to exclusive schools and took on the airs graces and customs of the old landed-gentry – many of whom quickly turned their attention to this new way of getting rich.
We have always had tensions between the monarch and this aristocracy – the wealthy elite. We have seen the growth of parliament over the last 100 years – and we have seen the rise of political parties the Tories supporting the monarch and the aristocracy and the Liberals supporting the growing middle and upper class professionals and much later the Labour Party representing the common man and women who have had the vote for a mere 100 years.
What we call democracy in the UK is that we are all ruled by an elite with a monarchy that sits as supreme head of the nation – and we all – the common man and the aristocracy are subjects to that monarchy. Even our parliament is subject to the monarchy and Members of parliament have to swear an oath to the monarch – though in modern times this sworn allegiance is now dropped.
There are many authors that write about democracy and spend much time defining it – demos “the people” and kratia “power or rule” which for the ancient Greeks meant power to the nobility – and not to every one else – bonded slaves were common place and the nobility at the time had house slaves and those that worked on their lands.
In all truth democracy means a noble elite who holds the power over others. It does not mean and has never meant “common man holds power or rules.” Democracy has always meant the privileged ruling the unprivileged. Though to the uneducated they deceive people lie to people and to themselves.
Democracy has never meant “people power” or “people rule” it has always meant an elite rule or an elite holds the power. We have never lived under a system where the people rule or where the people have power. We live in a world where the new rich the elite and the old aristocracy and the monarchy rule and have the power. Tis is the real meaning of democracy it was the same for ancient Greeks as it is for modern people now.
There are one or two miss-guided Libertarian Americans that are under the delusion that we in England live in a Democracy (dēmos ‘the people’ + -kratia ‘power, rule’). The trouble is Democracy has become one of those great myths – we think of Democracy as all men are free and able to vote. Even in Greece – this was not the reality.
Slaves were not free and were unable to vote. Only the ruling elite the landed gentry had such privileges. Most common people had no rights at all. In England the common principle was – if you owned land owned property you could vote – the same principle that was in Greece and the same principle that governs those in the “Democracy” movement today. The “people” meant the controlling elite who had the power – not bonded slaves.
The Liberal Democrats “Liberals” American Republicans and the Libertarians all represent this middle class gentry where the principles of capitalism are at it’s heart. They all accept values founded in the 17th century of laze faire capitalism no State intervention no NHS no free Education and minimal taxation – all of which we associate with modern day Conservatism.
Libertarians etc. support maximum liberty in both personal and economic matters tend to embrace individual responsibility, oppose government bureaucracy and taxes, promote private charity, tolerate diverse lifestyles, support the free market, and defend civil liberties and are usually all pacifists and all usually very well off financially. An English education founded on the Grammar school in the 40’s gave a rosy picture of empire and Greek mythology.
What about Trial by Jury? According to George Macaulay Trevelyan in A Shortened History of England (1958), during the Viking occupation: “The Scandinavians, when not on the Viking warpath, were a litigious people and loved to get together in the ‘thing’ to hear legal argument. They had no professional lawyers, but many of their farmer-warriors, like Njal, the truth-teller, were learned in folk custom and in its intricate judicial procedure.
A Danish town in England often had, as its principal officers, twelve hereditary ‘law men’. The Danes introduced the habit of making committees among the free men in court, which perhaps made England favourable ground for the future growth of the jury system out of a Frankish custom later introduced by the Normans.” Note the word “free men” the majority of men and women were not free.
The English king Æthelred the Unready issued a legal code at Wantage, which states that the twelve leading thegns (minor nobles) of each wapentake (a small district) were required to swear that they would investigate crimes without bias. These ‘juries’ differed from the present-day kind by being self-informing; instead of getting information through a trial, the jurors were required to investigate the case themselves.
In the 12th century, Henry II took a major step in developing the jury system. Henry set up a system to resolve land disputes using juries. A jury of twelve free men were assigned to arbitrate in these disputes. Unlike the modern jury, these men were charged with uncovering the facts of the case on their own rather than listening to arguments in court. Henry also introduced what is now known as the “grand jury”, through his Grand Assize.
Under the assize, a jury of free men was charged with reporting any crimes that they knew of in their hundred to a “justice in eyre,” a judge who moved between hundreds on a circuit. A criminal accused by this jury was given a trial by ordeal. Under the jury, the chances of being found guilty were much lower, as the king did not choose verdict (or punishment).
The Church banned participation of clergy in trial by ordeal in 1215. Without the legitimacy of religion, trial by ordeal collapsed. The juries under the assizes began deciding guilt as well as providing accusations.
The same year, trial by jury became a fairly explicit right in one of the most influential clauses of Magna Carta, signed by King John. Article 39 of Magna Carta reads (translated by Lysander Spooner in his Essay on the Trial by Jury (1852)):
“No free man shall be captured or imprisoned or disseised of his freehold or of his liberties, or of his free customs, or be outlawed or exiled or in any way destroyed, nor will we proceed against him by force or proceed against him by arms, but by the lawful judgment of his peers or by the law of the land.”
Trial by jury had nothing to do with democracy and by and large had nothing to do with 98 per cent of the population who were all bonded agricultural slaves. “Free men” were the townsmen the townsmen – the business people who owned land owned homes and owned bonded slaves as house servants or who worked on their fields in tied cottages. Article-39 refers to free men – not the bonded peasants of which Magna Carta 1215 did not concern itself with. The trial by jury system came from the nobles – the elite and had nothing to to do with ordinary people.
Why is it that American are so deluded? We have to understand that for Americans the Declaration of Independence was heavily influenced by Magna Carta 1215 and of course English Common Law – trial by jury all of which the Americans embraced with enthusiasm. Americans believe the we British are the foundation of the “true” democracy – in the sense of power to the common people and power through trial by jury – which clearly historically has never been the case. It was an invention by our Grammar schools that fed this myth.
The Americans were not going to be ruled by a king some supreme being that was above the law. It is why many Americans believe they live in a democracy of all free men – that delusion is still with them till this day. The myth was further ingrained in the minds of grammar school and private school kids learning Latin and French from the ruling elite and that of public debating which became quite ritualised. Two boys on either side of a proposition would present their case – the person that won the argument did so by getting more votes.
An idealised mythological view of what was supposed to have happened in “democratic Greece several thousands years ago. Grammar schools kids were imbued with this fantasy – a golden age of science mathematics and democracy little realising that the reality of those times was the great fairy tale to which the middle and upper classes so strongly believed in. As with much else Libertarian Americans believe wholly in these fictions.
Reality: Throughout English history we have lived under a feudal monarchist system. And we still live under that same system that we did hundreds of years ago. The same principles apply no NHS no free education no taxation for the wealthy and little or no government interference on how you make your money and where you keep it.
We have scrapped the grammar schools which created Libertarian soft Tories that believed in the capitalist system and the monarchy – having a view of a social structure of the working uneducated common man and that of themselves the business and professional class and then their superiors the aristocracy the elite and then the queen ruling above an ideal democratic world.
Modern day Democracy groups are all anti-socialist (anti-communist anti-anarchist anti-rebelionists) who firmly believe in capitalism and believe in a Democracy that has never existed apart from their fairy tales they learned at school. .American schools still teach the American Dream of liberalism – and become bonded debt slaves for life. Money is their goal and of course being charitable – minimal taxation no health care no free education is the goal of all that support pro-democracy movements. It is the delusion that through capitalism we will be free – such are the delusions held by many that advocate democracy and further blind us with their delusions.
The common man in England has only been able to vote for 100 years. Prior to that the only people that could vote were those that owned land and property – no land no property no vote. Millions of men and women – who were supposed to live in some mythological democracy were just slaves within a feudal monarchy. Worse the trial by jury system cam from the Baron’s (War Lords) who set out men to spy on the wrong doings of others and to report those same wrong doings back to the Baron.
So there was no idealistic dreamy world of educated men and women sitting down and deliberating over the evidence of a case. Much later we had roving judges that would go out into the towns gather 12 men and women – shop owners blacksmiths etc. who would sit and and judge on case by case. But for the common man (a bonded slave) there was no democracy and no justice and no trial by jury. “Justice” was meted out according to the customs of that location – we had no common law principles that covered England let alone democracy.
Why is it that Americans are so deluded? We have to look at their history – though very very short. Declaration of Independence. On July 2, 1776, the Second Continental Congress, still meeting in Philadelphia, voted unanimously to declare the independence “of the thirteen United States of America”.
Two days later, on July 4, Congress adopted the Declaration of Independence. A mere 242 years of history – not much. The American colonies chose to declare independence from Great Britain for many reasons. They believed the British were treating the colonists unfairly. … The colonists had no such voice in British government. Thus, they believed the taxes were unfair and illegal.
So they were now free of an old aristocracy and monarchy and declared themselves to be a republic – without a monarch. We can see and understand why these early settlers who were all businessmen – thought that they lived in a democracy where people had the power and were the rulers of this new world. But democracy prevailed – a ruling powerful elite which controls America now.
In a mere 242 years of history America has created the same “democracy” that exists in England and which existed many thousands of years ago in Greece – a ruling powerful elite governing debt slaves – who have no voice. Trial by jury is not the foundation of democracy – democracy is not the foundation of trial by jury these are beliefs put out by very ignorant people – who have a vested interest in universal slavery and the continuation of the free market capitalism – which does not bring freedom but rather slavery.