Formal Democracy Versus True Democracy. August 25, 2022.

With the demise of the Federalist Party and starting with the Jefferson Administration at the beginning of the 19th century, American democracy was destined to become nothing but a political ideal, a democracy in name only, not a true, functioning democracy that the Founding Fathers wanted. Called formal democracy, this development was based on an idealistic way of thinking that was to become a symptom of American national politics. It was the result of the biophysical incapacity of the armored American public to function socially independently and responsibly as a true democracy. The formation of the two-party American political system, a socio-political symptom that developed during the Jeffersonian Administration, was the result. It came about as a necessary form of social armor – the opposing social forces that in recent decades became politicized as the political left and the right – that temporarily preserved the infant American nation. This two-party, political system survived until around the middle of the 20th century when it broke down, a result of the transformation of society from authoritarian to anti-authoritarian in the mid-1960s. At this time, American society as a whole and the two party system, in particular, began to disintegrate. This was a time when people began losing contact with themselves biophysically, with their identity as Americans and when the 19th century ideal of a formal democracy was abandoned. A symptom of their contactless state, groups of young people today are left at odds with each other, adrift and in a state of cluelessness about the breakdown of their society that is happening rapidly around them. They are at the mercy of their know-nothing, emotional plague-ridden politicians who claim to know what is happening in America and how to help and take care of the people. Unknowingly, Americans are immersed in the end stage of a disease manifested in the socio-political realm that started over two centuries ago and is about to destroy what remains viable of the American nation..


  1. Dr. Konia
    Thank you once again for your continued efforts to bring the concept of functional thinking to the general public.

    The breakdown of American society that began with the transition to anti-authoritarianism signals the beginning of the end of humanity 2.0. Hopefully humanity 3.0 (i.e. when functional thinking serves as the guiding principle of the social agreements) will emerge from the ruins of our anti-authoritarian society.

    This posting reminds me of the treasure chest of knowledge that I acquired while reading and re-reading chapter 4 from your first book “The Emotional Plague”. I have included below a few extracts from that chapter for those who may want to further explore this topic.

    Chapter 4
    Democracy in Armored Society: Formal Democracy versus Work Democracy

    Page 163
    Work function originates from the biological core and constitutes the greater part of all genuine social activity.

    Democracy is essentially a philosophy which insists on the right and capacity of a people, acting either directly or through representatives, to control their institutions for their own purposes. Reich found that character armor actually prevents people from being able to rationally direct the activities of the state. Therefore, all attempts on the part of armored humans to form a truly democratic society must become distorted and turn into a formal democracy.

    Page 165
    The healthy person guides the work achievement of others by example, not by dictating the process or product.

    Page 166
    People afflicted with the emotional plague derive no satisfaction from work, nor are they able to work productively. They strive to get themselves into a position of authority so that they can then tell others how to work.

    Page 174
    Democracy is meaningful only when people’s capacity to tolerate freedom and to responsibly perform vital work determines their social relationships.

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