討論逐字稿: Do we need a uniform society to have a functional democracy?

From the discussion: Do we need a uniform society to have a functional democracy?

—Okay, before we start the discussion, I have a question. What actually does a ‘uniform society’ mean, does it mean everyone has the same purpose, same values, or the same opinion?
—This is a good question!
—I ask this because I can’t figure out the relation between 'uniform society' and 'functional democracy'.

—Do you remember how we got to this conclusion when we were talking about it?
—We were talking about Denmark, and Denmark is supposed, in our conception, it’s supposed to be a more uniform, homogenous society.
—So what kind of 'homogenous'?
—Okay, I’ll list the concepts. Same race, same socioeconomic class?
—Which means the gap is very small?
—Same historical background
—I think it means a large middle class, but also maybe the economic gap is small
—So few very rich and very poor
—So if there is a large group of poor people, can you say it’s a uniform society?
—This is also my question, it depends on the definition of uniform, you know? I was thinking about this definition, is it a specialized term?
—Hahaha no we just tried for a word to catch our feelings
—Okay but my difficulty is the relationship between the two terms.

—Lets approach it from another angle, which is 'multiculturalism'.
—In the history of the US, we had the idea of the ‘melting pot’ 大熔爐 it was all, give up your culture, become ‘American’ and I’ve been thinking about this, you know, like, why?
Because there are implications now which are bad, which is to say white people feel they don’t have any culture, so they cling to 'whiteness' which increases racism and is part of the 'whitelash' that trump harnessed to get elected
—So the US is no longer trying to be a melting pot
—But why does melting pot equal no culture?
—It’s because we had to become Americans! Which, although is kind of derivative British culture—
—Now I’m not sure, but I think, the uniformity of culture is the rationality behind the melting pot, so that democracy could happen.
—So you’re suggesting that because the US is all sorts of different people, so they needed a uniform society to support democracy
—Yeah, but this is just a theory, trying to understand this melting pot thing

—Okay, but my angle is, that since the US has many different people, there are different cultures, different lifestyles, so we need a system to help society work. And that kind of system may be democracy. So this angle may be that diverse society needs a democracy.
—I definitely agree with you. I don’t think the melting pot was a good idea.
—It seems though, if the society is too heterogeneous, it’s hard to obtain agreement on how to make things happen.
—Indonesia is a good example of this, of a lot of different cultures trying to make a nation together.

—So here's the angle I've been pondering for awhile, especially since our UBI discussion: If people are economically comfortable, will they be more okay with people who were different than them?

Do we need a uniform society to have a functional democracy?

Here are some points we made during our last democracy discussion: (Boaty McBoatface) I want to talk about the things we mentioned and bring them along further, using this as the focus question:

“Do we need a uniform society to have a functional democracy?”
討論的逐字稿


—Basically, we need to have a consensus to erace racism, or a consensus on how to treat social inequality, but there is no consensus now because we cannot guarantee who we are dealing with.

—In capitalist society, since there is no equality of resources a person can obtain, no equality of wealth, no equality of education, people have to strive to climb up to the highest level in society so as to acquire all these things. And also, because of limited resource, people compete to divide their own territory in society. As a result, hierarchy is formed.
—‘Their own territory' refers to a vertical one not a horizontal one, because the place we can live is too small ha

—The fundamental question of society or politics is, are you one of the masses, or are you separate from the masses?

—Crowds presents power that can’t be controlled or predicted. But democracy is predicated on crowds. We fight together for the future. But at the same time I don’t trust the masses, because of the tyranny of the majority, the ignoring of subtle differences.
There’s a famous poem by Ezra Pound: “The apparition of the faces in the crowd, the petals on the wet, black bough.” He’s talking abouthe crowds in the Metro station of paris, it’s the character of modernism.
We know now that Pound became a fascist, but the fascist attitude towards crowds is complicated. They relied on the support of the crowd to get power, but they have to control and manipulate the crowd to stay in power.
—That’s powerful, though, that’s the same power as democracy

—How do we make government responsive to the needs that people actually have in the world right now? Does it do a decent enough job already? What could improve?

Emotional Labor Part 2

What is emotional labor, and why do we have to do it? Previously at the RO Studio we discussed this concept in relation to paid jobs where emotional labor is a component: "Emotional labor is the process of managing feelings and expressions to fulfill the emotional requirements of a job. More specifically, workers are expected to regulate their emotions during interactions with customers, co-workers and superiors."—x

But today I want to talk about it in the context of relationships. Since I can’t find a good definition of it online, let’s look at a list people on the internet compiled to describe it.


# Partnered Life
* Am I checking in with my partner to see if they had a rough day?
* If so, am I stepping up to make their life easier in other ways (cooking, cleaning, etc.)?
* Am I open and clear about my wants, and not forcing my partner to guess/drag it out of me?
* Am I contributing constructively to planning of meals, events, trips, etc?
* Am I actively trying to make my presence feel safe for my partner?
* Do I try to do nice things for my partner without being asked (flowers, treats, etc.)?
* Do I take care of my own administrative life (paperwork, bills) without needing to be repeatedly reminded?