Watching both the health care and climate/energy debates in Congress, it is hard not to draw the following conclusion: There is only one thing worse than one-party autocracy, and that is one-party democracy, which is what we have in America today.
One-party autocracy certainly has its drawbacks. But when it is led by a reasonably enlightened group of people, as China is today, it can also have great advantages. That one party can just impose the politically difficult but critically important policies needed to move a society forward in the 21st century. It is not an accident that China is committed to overtaking us in electric cars, solar power, energy efficiency, batteries, nuclear power and wind power. China’s leaders understand that in a world of exploding populations and rising emerging-market middle classes, demand for clean power and energy efficiency is going to soar. Beijing wants to make sure that it owns that industry and is ordering the policies to do that, including boosting gasoline prices, from the top down.
Our one-party democracy is worse. The fact is, on both the energy/climate legislation and health care legislation, only the Democrats are really playing. With a few notable exceptions, the Republican Party is standing, arms folded and saying “no.” Many of them just want President Obama to fail. Such a waste. Mr. Obama is not a socialist; he’s a centrist. But if he’s forced to depend entirely on his own party to pass legislation, he will be whipsawed by its different factions.
You can see what the fried man refers to as 'one-party democracy'. Simply because Republicans oppose ridiculous policies like taxes on carbon emissions or nationalization of the health care industry, it means that only one party is participating in the 'democracy'! So going by Friedman's twisted logic, if the Tennessee Titans oppose the Pittsburgh Steelers' attempts to win the football game they are playing tonight, it's only a one-team game and the Titans just want the Steelers to fail.
So Tom wants a one-party autocracy (totalitarian dictatorship) "led by a reasonably enlightened group of people, as China is today". In what way is the Chinese 'autocracy' reasonably enlightened, Tom? When they force women into third trimester abortions? Or how about when they condemn people to death in order to harvest their internal organs to be given to well-connected people who need transplants? China might not be as bad as they were under Mao Tse-Tung, but I would not care to live under such a system as they have today.
So why does Tom want this autocracy? For one thing, I am sure that he thinks he would be counted as one of the 'reasonably enlightened' so he can help tell all us hillbillies in the red states how we are supposed to live our lives. And for another thing, democracy just isn't going to give him what he wants in terms of government policy. Most people have more common sense than Friedman. They can tell that the climate is not warming, that the source of our heat is the sun, and that the addition of a few carbon dioxide molecules to the atmosphere will not cause the earth to retain any more of the sun's heat.
Most people have experience in dealing with government and know that allowing the federal government to take over the health care system will only harm the quality of health care they receive. They don't want what Tom wants. Therefore, Tom wants to take the decision-making authority away from them. They should not be allowed to vote for the people who run our government. They should not be allowed to protest against congressmen who make decisions they don't like, as many have done recently at town hall meetings.
Anyone who falls for the notion of 'social democracy' or anything of the sort is an idiot. As Hayek most eloquently demonstrated in "Road to Serfdom", democracy is only possible with a limited government.