If the Greeks could do it, why can’t we?

I don’t (as a rule) plan to get political in this blog, but if using wine can help our country regain some civility, and achieve progress, I’m all for it!

It’s been said that the ancient Greeks realized that debate under the influence of alcohol was more open, honest, and truthful. They had elaborate rituals called Drinking Parties-Symposiums. After all, it was much easier to speak one’s mind while somewhat inebriated (they never allowed full-on drunkenness though), and valuable information was much easier to gather – I’m sure we can all attest to our somewhat uncensored actions from time-to-time while under the influence.

“The symposium basically had a serious purpose. The purpose was serious conversation. In the midst of all the drinking philosophical questions were examined: What was the purpose of life? What is justice and truth? Can we live under unconditional loyalty? Are the gods to be trusted? Are women really inferior? Is drinking the answer? Many of Plato’s dialogues including the symposium were first conceived in a drinking party when questions asked and the tongue freed by wine would speak.”  – Christopher Xenopoulos Janus

I say, let’s gather all our elected officials together. Let’s put them in party togas, give them comfy reclining couches, let the wine pour freely, and pose all the critical questions swirling around us today: Why it so hard to pass healthcare? Should corporate America really be the ones calling all the shots? Is there really a problem with allowing civil rights to every American citizen regardless of race, age, gender, or sexual orientation? Is it better to invest in improved incarceration for our criminals, or improved schools for our children? The list goes on and on…

The current system doesn’t seem to be working to well, maybe this is worth a try, if nothing else, it sure would be interesting to hear what they have to say with their filters turned off! Even better, it should be broadcast uninterrupted like the State of the Union address is. This would beat any carefully moderated political debate in helping me make my voting decisions! What do you think?


4 Responses to “If the Greeks could do it, why can’t we?”

  1. 1 Jared Stephen.
    January 28, 2010 at 2:02 pm

    I certainly think that it would be an interesting idea to try, and if anything garnering the truth would be useful. However, I don’t think the truths discovered would be appreciated by most modern day Americans. Now leaving political orientations aside, I can agree that all the aformentioned questions are worth being answered, but not necessarily worth being enacted by the governement. Nor do I think that government is truly the answer, the people are what should be deciding what goes on, and we as a whole should take the blame for the current politicians being liars, and having no backbone or agenda, or morals.

    Mmmm wine…

    • 2 Patrick Bartlett
      January 28, 2010 at 3:33 pm

      RE: “Now leaving political orientations aside, I can agree that all the aformentioned questions are worth being answered, but not necessarily worth being enacted by the governement.” I agree, but some of them can only be enacted by the government, that is unless we change our system, and embark on a true democracy vs the republic that we are. But if we did decide to act as a true democracy, and curtail/strip our precious elected officials of their power, it would only work if special interest and corporate control were truly curtailed – or at least thoroughly exposed for their true motives as well (in California, I’m reminded of the mormon and catholic churches and their massive support of Prop 8 – talk about manipulation and deceit that worked).

      In any event… wine is our friend! Or maybe in your case, I should say caffeine!

  2. 3 askstanford
    January 29, 2010 at 4:42 am

    We have to choose: who is better suited to provide services such as education and health care: government, or private business? We saw what happened with deregulated banks and what they did to us. Why is the dictatorship top-down style of the corporation so preferred by so many people? With government you have a vote and an influence. A corporation you just have to trust. And they have no incentive except the profit motive. Why wouldn’t they cheat and lie if it means more profit? Why do people trust them?

  3. 4 Kirst
    March 19, 2010 at 10:34 pm

    It’s a brilliant plan. Let’s start a letter writing campaign to our local senators.

    Healthcare Debate under the influence = best thing since pacman for watching people running around a maze chomping at each other.

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Patrick Bartlett

A conversation about food, wine, and the art of living well!


January 2010
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