The UK General Election is imminent. However, if you vote for any party other than Labour or Conservative, you are very unlikely to be represented by an elected official of your choosing in parliament. Can we really claim to be a democratic society when such a large proportion of the votes cast in the election won’t be represented by any future governing power? Furthermore, in a digital age there is no reason why the people of the UK could not vote on individual issues more regularly, yet no politician in parliament will ever put forward that option as a possibility for the future of our democratic process. So how democratic are we? – really?
All the Yes points:
- Dominant forms of representation do not work for the small parties
- At least we get to change governments with the ballot, not the bullet.
- Being a democracy means allowing the people to decide the government – Britain has that
All the No points:
- True democracy cannot exist in an individualistic culture
- If Britain is a democracy it is an undemocratic one
- As an ideal it depends on all being equally well informed, thoughtful and rational. Unattainable.
- A PM can take the country to war, seek inspiration from a non-existent God for decisions, & ignore wise, highly informed, advice.
Dominant forms of representation do not work for the small parties
Current electoral systems are mainly designed to provide a strong government without necessarily respecting the will of the people. This is particularly true in the UK and in many other European countries as well where the two main parties dominate the political scene.
One the other hand, the expetrience of countries such as Italy, where more chances are offered to small parties to participate in government, are not altogether encouraging. There is a danger of instability and also of various morally and politically problematic compromises between heterogeneous political parties.
However, a way should be found for political parties such as the Greens and the Lib Dems to participate more active in government.
Since the First January 2009 The UK joined the European Union it has been signed over to the control of the Unelected Dictatorship known as the European Union.
No Citizen of Britain was asked if they wanted to join the European Union and there was definitely no referendum.
There will never be a free referendum despite what Politicians promise. The European Union has been destabilizing and infiltrating this country for at least 36 years ever since the Spy and Traitor Ted Heath got us into the common Market.Harold MacMillan was also a spy and a Traitor as was Geoffrey Rippon and Roy Jenkins.
Type ‘Micheal Shrimpton’ into Google and watch the videos.
The Government do not answer to the People but rather the opposite ignore them and treat them with contempt.
Every Government since Ted Heath has been a Traitor to The UK and every Major Political Party is both a puppet and a pawn of the European Union. The European Union is Not Democratic despite the Sham of Elected MEPs. who have a box in front of them to vote on Issues which simply says ‘Yes’ or ‘No’ and THEY ARE TOLD WHICH BUTTON TO PRESS !
There are Parliaments for Scotland Ireland and Wales and even one for the Muslims but NO Parlimanet for the English which according to the Government and the EU DOES NOT EXIST !
There is no true democracy when you can invite foreigners into the Country and give them the Vote just to boost your own party’s vote number as New Labour have done.
Why do you think that Tony Blair watered down the Treason Act?
Because he knew that he was a Traitor as are many many others.
If you don’t believe me go to http://www.eutruth.org.uk
At least we get to change governments with the ballot, not the bullet.
The UK has a long history of relatively peaceful political change and we can vote a government out if we wish.
Being a democracy means allowing the people to decide the government – Britain has that
The Members of Parliament are appointed by no other means than the secret ballot that every person of voting age who is capable is able to vote in. This is the definition of a democracy.
True democracy cannot exist in an individualistic culture
Individualistic cultures have major problems because they breed division amongst the people. Everyone becomes their own island and this hinders quality of life for a lot of people. We as individuals are only part of the equation. We need support of others and therefore must live in a collective culture to feel whole. I am convinced that most Americans and Brits don’t know what it feels like to feel happy in its truest sense. They are too busy griping at neightbors for mowing on their side of the property line. Sad sad culture.
If Britain is a democracy it is an undemocratic one
While we do get to excersise the will of the people it is not very common. We get to vote once every five years and that is between several very similar manifestos that parties do not even stick to once they get into government. The governing party then has a 5 year dictatorship. So far in our system with hung parliaments unusual and the governing party often getting massive majorities they can ignore all other opinion except the cabinet’s. The government regularly survives back bench rebellions as well. This means they are not accountable to the people. The PM is only accountable to a small number of MPs who are strongly whipped to make sure they vote in the right way. In practice this means that the executive (PM + Cabinet) has as much power as many dictatorships, the ‘absolute’ monarchs of the past would love to have had parliaments that provide as little resistance as the Westminister Parliament does!
As an ideal it depends on all being equally well informed, thoughtful and rational. Unattainable.
True democracy should not just be about reflecting the prejudices, biases, ignorance and educational deficits that characterise the population. It would rely on people all being equally capable of rational thought and analysis and knowledgeable on all issues. Clearly that is unattainable.
Any form of government is predicated on a delegation of decision making and it is inevitable that those to whom we delegate will aggregate together in groups where there will be compromise in order to achieve outcomes that can be implemented. It also allows for those with more knowledge to make unpopular decisions that might not have majority support.
One has to agree with Churchill that democracy is the worst form of government apart from all the others that have been tried. As such, the UK has one of the best implementations of democracy; which is not to say that it could not be further improved.
A PM can take the country to war, seek inspiration from a non-existent God for decisions, & ignore wise, highly informed, advice.
Churchill’s History of the English Speaking People confronts us with the fact that, for many centuries, foolish wars have repeatedly been sought to settle conflicts and make national decisions, very often very lame decisions after huge sacrifice. Governments have turned to one religion over another, or to the legitimacy of monarchial blood lines in order to validate decisions. Old habits die with difficulty. The present monarch is not allowed to speak or have political views. What makes one form of religion better when there may be no deity? What makes a first borne a more legitimate leader? The decision to go into Iraq against majority opinion and against the wisest of advice, shows that the UK government has not overcome past habits. Important decisions which affect the whole populace require the most informed and able sources, sometimes science, sometimes an affected minority, sometimes the costs of consequences. Not on the basis of party ideology, pressure from a foreign power, the influence of the media, financial interests that fund the media during elections, minority party standings, money from powers that can profiteer (arms, contracts) as a result. Large sections of the population are ignore-ant of complex issues, so are MPs who follow ideology or party whipping at voting time. There needs to be a kind of balance that prevents profound wisdom from being ignored and overcome by narrow interests. Suffrage and representation does not mean that democracy has been fulfilled, it is corruptible, it can fail to seek evidence, critical planning, and wisdom, it can even promote beliefs in falsehood. The two party system over simplifies, in the same way that matters were once decided by foolhardy wars, by teams in sport finding a winner (even by a narrow margin of milliseconds!); the naivete of up/down, left/right, win/lose thinking; life and optimal community decision making are more complicated and complicated than that! Let’s struggle, and get past democratic condescension!