The Enlightenment began in France, and in no small measure had the European experience in North America to thank. Although the Enlightenment looked back to ancient Greece’s democracy for political inspiration, in major ways classical Greece was a poor example: slaves outnumbered citizens in Athens and women were nearly prisoners in their homes. When the Enlightenment began, humanity’s only functioning democracy was the in the area of present-day New York State. Iroquoian women elected the chiefs, ran village life, and cast their children’s vote in proxy, for a balance of power between the sexes that no Western society has yet approached. History being the ultimate ironist, George Washington led the effort to eradicate Iroquois society. The in much the same way as 1940s Jews saw Adolf Hitler. The largely classless societies among the North American natives, and the freedom that was such a natural part of native life, were attractive to Europeans, which led to a long-standing colonial problem: colonists .” Later theorists such as Friedrich Engels drew upon the Iroquoian example. The Iroquoian government was very democratic, with decentralized power and had no executive branch, which monarchical Europe could not countenance, so the framers of the USA's Constitution invented the executive branch, which has undermined the other branches ever since, amassing power to itself (so that those who control the president control the government). Ben Franklin, the American ambassador to France, .


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