Economic growth in Greece was accompanied by progress in architecture, engineering, sculpture, painting, theater and many fields of science. The PBS program would have us believe this all occurred because of democracy. There is no explanation of how democracy could have done this. That events happen at the same time does not prove one caused the other. The people who produced this PBS program make the sophomoric mistake of assuming that correlation means causation.
What made possible the expansion of progress in Greece and later in the East and West was the work of Aristotle. He studied almost every subject possible at that time and made significant contributions to most. He studied anatomy, astronomy, geography, geology, meteorology, physics, chemistry, botany, zoology, biology, ethics, government, philosophy, and economics. And he wrote the first formal study of logic.
Logic is the process of correct reasoning. Aristotle said the truths about reality are to be known by the principle of cause and effect and the laws of logic, which he formulated. His words on this subject are so encompassing and penetrating that more than 2,000 years later the philosopher Immanuel Kant wrote that since Aristotle, logic had been “unable to take a single step forward, and therefore seems to all appearance to be finished and complete.”
Aristotle taught mankind how to think. That—not democracy—was what made possible the expansion of knowledge on many subjects in ancient Greece and worldwide over many centuries since. But the PBS program on Greece did not include a single mention of Aristotle, the most influential philosopher in history.
PBS then tries to link its democracy-causes-progress argument with America's advancement by falsely claiming our Founding Fathers created a democratically oriented government. This is fake history. Roughly a century ago Albert Jay Nock wrote that it was worth going through the literature of early America “to see how the words 'democracy' and 'democrat' appear exclusively as terms of contumely and reprehension” [contumely definition: “an insulting display of contempt.”]....One sometimes wonders how our revolutionary forefathers would take it to hear some flatulent political thimblerigger [i.e.swindler] charge them with having founded 'the great and glorious democracy of the West.'”