Do we need them?

York Press: Do we need them? Do we need them?

DO YOU too find our partisan squabbling politicos tedious, predictable and insulting to the little intelligence they seem to assume we possess?

Aren’t politician’s directly or indirectly merely servants of the one per cent? MPs, councillors, bishops, lords and ladies – do we really need them?

Times have changed with the introduction of t’internet and all things touchy-feely technology-wise. Yet democracy is hamstrung by the same old clunky political and bureaucratic system formed centuries ago.

Centralisation is oh-so-yesterday but the political class refuses to let go.

Back in old Greece, democracy meant electing representatives by elites selecting black or white balls. Parliament has hardly changed as elitist MPs respond to a public school-like bell, rushing breathless to the chamber to vote, often clueless about what exactly.

We could represent ourselves through the collective will of proper democracy utilising minimal administrative facilitators and a regionalised high-tech system permitting citizens to vote on most local, national and international issues.

Chances are no ID cards, scandalous expenses, boom and bust, vanity projects, austerity, lack of homes, green taxes, pension robbery or pointless wars had we ditched our unrepresentative representatives for collective commonsense.

Tom Scaife, Manor Drive, York.

Comments (1)

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4:03pm Thu 23 Jan 14

Firedrake says...

We certainly have the technology now to facilitate instant referenda on just about any issue. Superficially, that does sounds like real democracy in action, but I fear the end result would be a kind of mob rule: draconian laws brought in on a tide of knee-jerk reactions etc.

Of course we are all entitled to our opinions about anything and everything -and to express them freely - but that doesn't make us experts about anything and everything. The whole point about parliamentary democracy is that we elect people who undertake to represent our views to parliament accurately but not slavishly ... in other words they can and should declare how we feel and why, but should still be able to modify our demands when they are mistaken or impractical.

I am of course offering a counsel of perfection here; but that's the ideal to which our representatives should aspire. It goes without saying that they often fall short.
We certainly have the technology now to facilitate instant referenda on just about any issue. Superficially, that does sounds like real democracy in action, but I fear the end result would be a kind of mob rule: draconian laws brought in on a tide of knee-jerk reactions etc. Of course we are all entitled to our opinions about anything and everything -and to express them freely - but that doesn't make us experts about anything and everything. The whole point about parliamentary democracy is that we elect people who undertake to represent our views to parliament accurately but not slavishly ... in other words they can and should declare how we feel and why, but should still be able to modify our demands when they are mistaken or impractical. I am of course offering a counsel of perfection here; but that's the ideal to which our representatives should aspire. It goes without saying that they often fall short. Firedrake
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