We agree on one thing; democracy is failing
Democracy is at a fork in the road and while people across the political spectrum admit its failing, they differ substantially on their reasoning as well as their understanding of what democracy is all about.
Democracy is a broad, loaded term so it is important to get to grips with its meanings to ensure no one talks past one other.
One interpretation; it’s the guaranteed individual rights that made up the fabric of western democracies for so long like Freedom of Speech, Academic Freedom and Freedom of Religion.
While others view democracy as the winner-takes-all political system of majority rule now believed to be under threat and fighting for its very survival.
These two ‘democracies’ are at odds because values have split in opposite directions these past twenty odd years with all things traditional gone the way of the Dodo bird for all sorts of reasons, but certainly globalization has aggravated the situation, and the results –fracturing and hostile cultures contained in single countries.
The glue that once held it all together in the form of a common value system is no more, or to define it more succinctly, a common national identity has given way to two diametrically opposed world- views.
Democracies are on the verge of a nervous breakdown with the west’s malaise and self-doubt deepening, and not just because Donald Trump is in the White House writes Politico Magazine.
The Prawn and Cocktails Brigade discusses the ‘D’ word
The mood at the annual Halifax International Security Forum, a clubby gathering of leading democracies held in Canada, sums up the gloom with the words; we have to spend some time shoring up our own democracies.
“Freedom and democracy cannot be taken for granted in any country at any time,” Peter Van Praagh, president of the forum, said in his welcoming remarks.
There was much talk about the need to reassess and revitalize ‘our’ values and institutions.
The topic of ‘populism on the march’ was only to be expected by these elite talking heads as they praised people power in places like Hong Kong, Iran and Sudan, no surprises here, but criticized ‘illiberal democracy’ in Hungry and dysfunction and paralysis in the U.K.
The irony is the dysfunction in the U.K. is caused by the establishment blocking Brexit every step of the way but despite this; they STILL do not have the result they want, thanks to those pesky Brexiteers.
A question of whose democracy is this anyway, theirs or ours, seemed to be the prevailing line.
But, most of all it’s about opposing political ideals and goals within a falsely constructed left-right divide, with elites solidly backing a globalist, progressive agenda in the west, splitting civilians into likewise camps and pitting them against each other using the divide and rule playbook.
Oh and don’t forget, playing geopolitical chess with countries like Iran and others, actively involved in their destabilization with reports surfacing of CIA operatives working undercover in Iran.
At the end of its deliberations, the theme of the conference was unmistakable; western countries are in deep trouble, but few could agree on what needed to be done or just who, exactly, should lead the way.
Rule of the unelected
Whether they realize it or not, most countries are already subject to rule by unelected, unaccountable bureaucratic administration agencies who determine many of the rules and regulations that affect the everyday lives of ordinary citizens.
However, what if elections end up scrapped altogether and replaced with rule by autocratic elites, is it possible we are heading in this direction in the near future?
A survey from Pew Research Group asked 42 000 people from 38 nations about their attitude towards democracy and found support for representative democracy shallow.
Pew developed an index to assess the extent to which people are attracted to representative democracy over potential alternatives — rule by experts, a strong unaccountable leader, or military rule.
The results were as follows; Pew concluded just 23 percent were committed to representative democracy, 47 per cent less committed, and 13 percent are nondemocratic.
The surprise in a country like Australia for example, supposedly deeply committed to representative government but with their biggest weakness being a fondness for rule by experts.
Forty-one per cent of Australians think that rule by unelected experts would be acceptable.
There is particularly strong support for a technocracy among young Australians.
The survey found young Australians, aged 18 to 29, 19 per cent more likely to support rule by experts than older ones.
This finding matches the IPA’s Growing Freedom survey, which found just 31 per cent of young Australians rated the importance of living in a democracy as completely important.
A technocracy is a seriously flawed form of government — it empowers some citizens over others based upon arbitrary and subjective measures of intelligence or education; it falsely assumes that all is required in policy making is expertise, ignoring morality, values and trade-offs; and, ultimately, limits our capacity to impact the decisions that affect our lives.
Fueled by the chasm created by the results of the 2016 U.S. election, some political philosophers’ seized the opportunity to promote the line; although democracy is the rule of the people, the people are in many ways unfit to rule, whatever the political party.
We Have to Take Your Freedoms
Very recently, German Chancellor Angela Merkel informed the German parliament of the need to limit free speech saying; Government must take away freedom of speech to save it ………………or something along these lines.
Angela Merkel: For those who claim they can no longer express their opinion, I say this to them: If you express and pronounced opinion, you must live with the fact that you will be contradicted.
Expressing an opinion does not come at zero cost. But freedom of expression has its limits. Those limits begin where hatred is spread. They begin where the dignity of other people is violated.
This house will and must oppose extreme speech. Otherwise our society will no longer be the free society that it was.
Sorry Angela, this is not the understanding of how Freedom of Speech works you irrational, ignominious tyrant.
All we hear is the Borg’s line — resistance is futile, comply or face assimilation.
Plying your bullshit does not baffle brains or convince otherwise so save your-self the trouble
We see you, and others just like you.