skeptical scientist wrote:I can't really imagine them throwing out one monarch in favor of another in this day and age, however. I'd guess they would just scrap the whole archaic institution instead.
Right. And that happened in a lot of countries in the 20th century, and even the 21st century
. Also, on a number of occasions, an old monarch has resigned in favor of one of their children, who they hope will be more popular. There are absolute monarchs still, who do use oppression to stay in power, but they're only around in the middle east and possibly Brunei.
aldonius wrote:You're right in that nowadays, there's no real need for the disproportionate power. Point was that no self-respecting state is going to join a federation where its interests are guaranteed to be swamped by larger, established states.
Perhaps we should rectify the situation by abolishing states, or reorganising them, or something. AIUI, both US and Aussie Senates act largely as a check on the Houses of Reps, so the problem is largely solved by further restricting the Senate's power.
The thing is, none of that is at all practicable in the US, given everyone's love of the Constitution. As sourmilk said, everyone from the extreme right to the far left voices support to the Constitution. Everyone in federal government or the military has sworn allegiance to it. There may be political support for amendments, but a wholesale restructuring is off the table.
In any event, the whole point of the Senate is that it's undemocratic and designed to put small states on an equal footing with big states. That's why you'll have a lot of pedants and people trying to prove a point who insist that the US is a republic, not a democracy.