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"Do you consider Aristotle to be unintelligent?"
(Non-)Argumentum ad Verecundiam?
A wise man once said "there are no authorities". The greatest minds can also be wrong/mistaken. Einstein didn't get the Theory Of Relativity right in one sitting, and in fact, it was wrong the first times, and it's still not taken to be fully correct and may be revised in a near future.
Aristotle could be wrong.
Here is a list of dictatorships that the United States has backed, for various reasons.
Non sequitur? The US also backed (backs) up extremist/terrorist groups. Does that make them ok for any reason?
"Dictatorships don't inherently come to power through bloodshed, and not everyone has effective freedom to elect their own leaders within democracies."
How exactly? Everyone has all the freedom to vote in whoever they see fit. There might be room for improvement, but whatever flaws the system has, it's not oppressing anyone regarding their freedom to voice/act on their opinion.
So... what's missing?
Also, there's no way one person can have their will imposed on everyone else without at least stepping on some people's feet a few times. So, in a way, you can't ever have a dictator without at least some figurative bloodshed.
"It's important to remember that our concept of individual rights is incredibly new within the context of human history."
Our concept of the scientific method is only 400 years old (incredibly new!). Yet it did considerably more for us in those 400 years than anything else did in the prior 9600 years of recorded history. Is there any dispute as to it being the best method of study and reasoning?
The people in other ages knew better than to live anarchically, but no better than to live in non-democratic systems. If they had thought of it, or if they had been able to make it happen, they would've.
No matter how benevolent a dictator might be, his individual opinions are imposed, thus most other individual minds will always have certain necessities being oppressed. We are not ants, we have individual agency. Ancient societies ought to be aware of that, even if they had no concept of it or if it was taboo; they might be illiterate ignorants, but not devoid of individual brains and emotions and wants and needs.
Decisions in that kind of political system are not taken by that one elected person. That's not likely to be the case in dictatorships.
In a dictatorship you might not even be able to complain about it.
That said, it's one flaw in democracy. One that should be addressed, that the people should be able to revoke their election by means of another majority voting.
Flaws don't make it worse, though. No system is perfect, and surely democracy isn't either. That does not take away from it being by all means superior to dictatorship.
Can you provide a significantly greater amount of examples of beneficial dictatorships that existed throughout history? Can you provide any, at all?
A dictatorship removes agency from individuals. Even if a dictator has a good heart that doesn't get corrupted by delusions of power, nearly ever single other individual will have certain wants and needs suppressed/repressed/oppressed.
Democracy is inherently better indeed, since it removes the enforcement of one individual's opinions over every other. It allows anyone to do as they please, and the only thing you need to enforce is that no one infringes on each others' well being.
Democracy is as fair as it can get (at least so far). Dictatorship is the antithesis.
Is it not a rare sight to see conservatives agreeing with liberals? Or teaming up?
Again, the road to fanaticism, fundamentalism, extremism, etc, is hardly one with T-junctions where conservatives might stop to decide they'd merge ideas from both parties. That's not to say it doesn't happen. That's one way we get new religious sects, for example. But usually the derivation includes a great majority of the original ideals, and not a heterogeneous mix.
I can accept those nuances, but they're not really relevant in this regard. Even if moderate conservatives were just as likely to become extreme liberals as they might be of becoming extremist conservatives, the question I'm asking is, essentially, how likely are they to become extremists at all, and what I contend is that it only depends on the type of propaganda they are exposed to, if any.
I think the reason planets don't affect us is more because we're too small (little mass) to be affected. I have not corroborated that, it's just what it seems to me. Flies are as close to the earth as we are and couldn't care less about its gravity, and in reality the planets gravitational pull does reach this far and does have a certain effect.
For example, the sun itself gets pulled by Jupiter, which causes it to wobble slightly. The pull from the supermassive black hole at the center of the galaxy also reaches here and beyond.
Either way, gravity might not be the force that affects us. It's the only one of the four known forces in physics that could, but doesn't. It's up to astrologers to prove the existence of a fifth force. :)