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Gulliver's Travels

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In Gulliver's Travels, Lemuel Gulliver travels to many different and what seems to him, magical lands. For the most part he struggles to understand the way of life in these lands as they so differ from his life in England. Among the many lands he travels, Brobdingnags' government is one of the most unusual to Lemuel as its peace and serenity is almost Utopian-like. I find myself wondering how, if I were in Lemuel's position, would I describe, in comparison, the United States of America to the Brobdingnag's.

In the United States we choose our leaders based on democratic ideals. The people themselves decide who will be in office by voting in a fair election. Voting itself is a right of the people and something we American's take very seriously. Because of this our leaders are not appointed in accordance with class, race, or religious beliefs; they are elected based on who the voter's want to represent them. In Brobdingnag, their leaders are based on age and wisdom. As the Queen states, twice a year the oldest person from each village meets with her and from there they decide what is good for the kingdom as a whole.

This leads me to taxation; in the United States we have our sales tax, income tax, property tax, etc. To simplify it, the monies raised by these taxes are what pay for our roads, our parks, our schools, our armed forces etc. Taxation is the basis for our economy. In Brobdingnag, there is no real economy nor is there any taxation. Everyone is on equal footing and goods and services are divided equally. Because of this there are no class divisions, there is no upper class, middle class or lower class; all are equal. There is no starvation because everyone gets equal share of food based on their need.

The United States Armed forces is made up of completely voluntary regiments. No one is forced, at least not since after the Vietnam war, to participate in any branch of the Armed forces be it the Army, Navy, Marines or the Air Force. The armed forces stand tall and proud and are ready to react to an incursion that may need the United States interference. The Armed Forces keeps our homeland safe and secure and the reason we are all thankful for the freedoms we have, without them our freedoms would not exist.

Brobdingnag has an army that stands proud and tall but has no use as the Brobdingnagians have no enemies. Their armed forces stick to their own shores and is never a need for their use. At one point in the story Lemuel Gulliver tries to teach the Brobdingnagians the use of gun powder and is quickly admonished because of it. To the Brobdingnagians gun powder was nothing but barbaric. The King of Brobdingnag goes as far as to say the Lemuel's people are "the most pernicious race of little odious vermin that nature ever suffered to crawl upon the surface of the earth."

You can clearly see the difference in governmental practices between Brobdingnag



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