Kakistocracy… A Word You Should Know

Kakistocracy: Government by the least qualified or most unprincipled element of a society; superlative of kakos (bad).  In ancient Greek, kakonomia is a noun meaning “a bad system of laws and government,” hence the adjective kakonomos “with bad laws, ill-governed.”

“Kakistos” is Greek for “worst” – “Kakistocracy” means worst government; “kacophony” means worst sounds, like what is popularly but tastelessly called “music” today.

[The above picture is of Sara Palin, kakonomos running mate with kakonomos John McCain in 2008. Palin and McCain, along with Bush, Obama, and Trump, are all famous for their kakonomos contributions to US Government – securing its place at the top of World Idiocracy.]

Kakistocracy, along with Idiocracy, both describe the current state of the union.  In fact “Government by the worst people” describes the character of US government. Man’s government is best described as “big criminals ruling over small criminal wannabees.”

The American poet James Russell Lowell asked in a letter in 1876, if our government is “… a kakistocracy for the benefit of knaves at the cost of fools?”

Kakistocracy is certainly a word that should enter our vocabularies and our political discourse, perhaps find its rightful place on the SAT and be scrawled on the walls of colleges and public restrooms.


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