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Why not direct democracy?

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posted on Oct, 5 2011 @ 08:25 AM
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reply to post by Merigold
 


The Swiss model may not be perfect but it is proven to work.

I think for it to work in the UK we would also need to devolve a lot of power to the regions within something like a federal system thus encouraging involvement on both local and national issues.

Direct democracy for the UK was discussed here;
www.abovetopsecret.com...

reply to post by cassandranova
 


There is abdolutely no reason why direct democracy can not work in the USA.
Too many people are locked into their current viewpoints and are unable to view things from a neutral viewpoint.

If any kind of progress is ever to be made then we need to think, act and discuss with a degree of openness and honesty that far too few people seem willing to even attempt to show at present.




posted on Oct, 5 2011 @ 10:05 AM
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I think the problem for America is for us to take on a more truly democratic character, we'd find it incompatible with the empire and requiring a more modest foreign engagement.

It's a valid question if that is actionable not because of what it would mean for the people we live here, but because of the hostility we have engendered in other nations from our actions over the last fifty years. Were we to pull back, how stiff would the consequences be?

But, excepting foreign policy and the related spending concerns, I do believe there are ways it could work well here, and the Swiss example is very encouraging!



posted on Oct, 16 2011 @ 04:00 PM
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Participatory Democracy, where everyone has the ability in a free society to deal with most issues of government. (Having everything out there of a sensitive nature, I get hate mail when I say this but tell the people and you tell those who want to do people harm so some areas, not many at all but some areas should be limited until we figure out how to make this work at least. Lets start there) The internet does make it possible in time to make government not just transparent in almost all ways, but will give each of us the right and way to act on any area of government as opposed to representatives, who frankly don't often seem to do much but represent themselves.

But lets be honest here. How many of us are going to care at all for most of what government does, that is "house keeping issues" No pun here either. Most of what is done on a daily basis would bore most people with a life to abject tears. If not go stark raving coo coo. But one should have the right never the less. Point is most people will be interested in this or that and hence we will need others to represent us when we have, you know a life to live. Some things many perhaps but hardly "all the issues of government" will have some people wanting to wade in. I can think of no better way to really make democracy work in perhaps the "purest sense of the word" I will do what little I can to help make this a real option for all. That is the meaning of "We the People", as I understand it.



posted on Oct, 16 2011 @ 05:48 PM
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Originally posted by arbiture
How many of us are going to care at all for most of what government does, that is "house keeping issues" No pun here either. Most of what is done on a daily basis would bore most people with a life to abject tears. If not go stark raving coo coo.


Actually their government is still representative but each vote counts. Maybe dropping the electoral college would be a step in the right direction, long overdue, for the US.

What really makes the difference is the power to challenge any law. So the people vote for their representatives and these do what they do in any representative government. If the government passes a law that some don't agree with. Those in opposition draw up a petition and start collecting signatures. If they get enough signatures the law gets voted on by the people in a referendum. They have the final word. Also they have the last word on constitutional amendments.

This explains in more detail: How direct democracy makes Switzerland a better place



posted on Oct, 17 2011 @ 03:48 PM
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reply to post by daskakik
 


Notice: A rant, but appropriate. I agree with the premise you have of eliminating the electoral college. No question, start with dumping that paradigm of corruption, way to rig the electorate by "redistricting", and other obscene actions by eliminating the obsolete electoral college. When it comes to why the current electoral college and the associated ability to change districts based on guess what? How people in a district have voted based on determining who and what categorizes a district-diametric. Some in the GOP have forced through redistricting because they didn't like the outcome of previous elections. And such things used to be the prevue of the Democrats. Perhaps some still think the way to get someone to vote "a certain way" is to cheat.

How bout offer a candidate with a reasonable agenda, and serious interest in representing the people and NOT be fixated, as the right has been spending all its time on such critical issues of state-craft as shoving religious agendas and social engineering based on such bigotry down our throats. As the tea party et.el seems so interested in the Constitution, wonder how many actually BELIEVE in it? How about the separation of church and state?. Liberty begins with governments, thats the Peoples representatives as honest brokers. Not extreme religous hacks for this or that agenda. Seems we DO have issues to be dealt with. One way to put a stop to this nonsense is not organize districts per say in such a way one can "redraw the landscape" based on an "agenda".

A shocking thought: One person one vote. Base who wins any election on the popular vote. Of course had that been done in 2000, Gore would have won easily. But the past is the past, lets just never forget it, and when we have a problem as we do with the innate corruption-on-a-stick we call the electoral college, DUMP IT people!



posted on Oct, 18 2011 @ 12:35 AM
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Originally posted by arbiture
reply to post by daskakik
 

How bout offer a candidate with a reasonable agenda, and serious interest in representing the people and NOT be fixated, as the right has been spending all its time on such critical issues of state-craft as shoving religious agendas and social engineering based on such bigotry down our throats.


I think that is what is great about the direct democracy model that they have in switzerland. If you get representatives that have a reasonable agenda but somehow a crappy piece of legislature gets pushed through then the people have a way of dealing with it without having to wait for it to go to the supreme court or waiting til the next elections to try and find better representatives who may or may not reverse the actions of the ones they replaced.

I mean after all who is going to represent the people better than themselves?



posted on Oct, 18 2011 @ 11:24 AM
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Without ending the electoral college, there's a movement in several states that lean notoriously left or right to adopt a procedure where their electors are given to the winner of the national popular vote for the Presidency. It's not more efficient than an overhaul of the current system, but might have enough traction to succeed provided enough states adopt the system. Though, I hate to think what it would mean for a recall.

I don't have a problem with the current system in that aspect, however. If we had a popular vote system, candidates would simply ignore vast swaths of the country. I even did a little research to check this:

Using 2010 Turnout Figures, 89.9 million people voted for the Presidency

California - 10.1 million
Florida - 5.4 million
Texas - 5.0 million
New York - 4.7 million
Pennsylvania - 4.0 million
Ohio - 3.9 million
Illinois - 3.7 million
Michigan - 3.3 million

Selected States Total - 40.1 million, 44.6% of total electorate

If you switched from the current electoral system, the shift you would see is from where states that are ideologically predictable being ignored to the states where there weren't many people being ignored. Elections would be fought and won on the coastal corridors, largely, and lead to policies that would benefit one region at the cost of another. While every vote would be truly equal, the problem is the sort of regionalism it encourages could have a very divisive impact.

I'm not saying that is better or worse, but it is worth consideration.



posted on Oct, 18 2011 @ 04:59 PM
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reply to post by cassandranova
 


Tell me about it.. The electoral college is a license to "screw the people" by designing districts according to what ever flake wants the rest of us to "live with" No way guys... Dump it, dump it now! Its a mess anyway.



posted on Oct, 19 2011 @ 01:02 AM
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reply to post by cassandranova
 


Actually if the people could veto laws then it wouldn't really matter which way candidates lean or what states they favor. It would put their power in check if the people could snip selfserving legislation.

If a piece of legislation favors only one state or a small group of states the citizens of the other states could shoot it down. No more tit for tat at the federal level.



posted on Oct, 19 2011 @ 02:53 AM
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Generally I'm against direct democracy; Governments simply do too much to wait for the people to vote on everything. However I'm all for certain direct elements - I like the recently introduced e-petitions but feel it should go further. If a petition got for example 500,000 votes the issue should have to be discussed in the Commons rather than just going to a commitee.

Furthermore I'd like to see the introduction of a bill giving a list of types of bills which must be approved by the people directly. On this list I'd have things like giving greater powers to the EU/other supranational organisations, as well as other major constitutional reforms (i.e voting reforms, getting rid of the monarchy, etc.)



posted on Oct, 19 2011 @ 03:25 AM
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reply to post by Freeborn
 


Alright. Now let's give Switzerland three hundred million more people and make it cover the breadth of continental Europe.

'Cause that's the United States.

I harbor doubts



posted on Oct, 19 2011 @ 07:07 AM
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reply to post by TheWalkingFox
 


So we stick with the same old same old with all it's failings.

I think we all recognise the need for change - direct democracy seems like the best alternative by far to me as it empowers the people.

How would it work in the USA?
I don't know.
But I do know that the UK urgently needs radical electoral and parliamentary reform and that the party political system has outlived it's usefulness.



posted on Oct, 19 2011 @ 11:14 AM
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reply to post by TheWalkingFox
 


I don't see why it wouldn't work better than what is actually in place in the US. It is almost the same system. It's a constitutional republic with elected representatives. The only difference is that there is a way for the citizens to contest legislation directly.

I think it is actually the check in the checks and balances that the founding fathers of the US overlooked. Every existing branch of government can be corrupted but if you want to buy off the majority in a population of 300+ million your gonna need at least a cool trillion.



posted on Oct, 19 2011 @ 11:20 AM
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reply to post by Freeborn
 


My problem with it in the UK, is that our media seems to have too much power influencing the masses opinions. When you have a paper like The Sun that has had so much influence on the success and failure of British political parties, it slightly concerns me direct democracy in the UK may just reflect a list of demands by The Sun and Daily Mail.



posted on Nov, 3 2011 @ 10:55 AM
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Before we U.S. citizens think about changing our form of government to a direct democracy I would like to see our representative democracy governed and administrated as it was intended by the founding fathers. It has been over 200 years, but still we are not what was envisioned when the Constitution was written. It took 150 years for all men and women alike to be "equal" as described by Jefferson in the Declaration of Independence. Until the mid-twentieth century, we were slowly heading in the direction of the founders' vision. Then, the federal government, led by the judicial branch, began to slowly centralize political power in Washington D.C. thereby denying us, the citizens, of our individual and state sovereignty.

Let's keep the system we have but force our elected and appointed officials to follow the constitution and we will be okay.



posted on Nov, 3 2011 @ 10:58 AM
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I think you hit the problem with any institutionalized government. The inevitable and invariable centralization of power into fewer and fewer hands.

The ambitions of politicians are such that you will never see the states assume their position as having equal or greater sovereignty to the political class. It's why the modern argument might very well have to begin with a more direct form of democracy.

The Founders talked quite a bit about population density in their various writings. In the position we're in now, I like to think they would have seen their system would have been subverted.



posted on Nov, 3 2011 @ 11:05 AM
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A direct democracy might be good for smaller communities,cities and smaller countries,but the bigger the country gets and the more people it affects,the worse it performs.

It's easier to gather smaller amounts of like minded individuals,then larger ones.



posted on Nov, 3 2011 @ 12:31 PM
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Originally posted by cassandranova
I think you hit the problem with any institutionalized government. The inevitable and invariable centralization of power into fewer and fewer hands.

The ambitions of politicians are such that you will never see the states assume their position as having equal or greater sovereignty to the political class. It's why the modern argument might very well have to begin with a more direct form of democracy.

The Founders talked quite a bit about population density in their various writings. In the position we're in now, I like to think they would have seen their system would have been subverted.


You are right. I am sure the founders' would be appalled by the state of our democracy



posted on Nov, 3 2011 @ 04:32 PM
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The problem with direct democracy is that people are much too selfish and short sighted to be of any use in maintaining a functioning civilised society. Look at how easy it is to convince people that climate change or evolution is not real. Direct democracy requires a critical mind, firmly anchored in reality.

www.youtube.com...



posted on Nov, 20 2011 @ 09:07 PM
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reply to post by aaa2500
 


Yes, that's the "official" narrative of the ruling class for millenia now, that they revise and update every now and then so it appears fresh, add some novelty value you know, from Moses to Paul to Hobbes to Rand, and they make sure their serfs are just smart enough to recite it, oh the people are too dumb to decide for themselves, we are sinners we dont deserve our freedoms, we would resort to barbarism without someone on top, our nature is violent! We are evil at birth and only through servitude and obedience to the system we can improve our lives. We are born guilty until proven worthy to our masters, but has anyone really taken a moment to think what we really lack in order to achieve this?

What are the physical limitations? Who opposes it? What is the real obstacle to self emancipation-determination? Why cant a society be really classless? Why has it always has to be a pyramid of the rulers-praetors-plebs variant?

The truth is it has happened and it has prospered in small places for small periods of time, it didn't go well, it went great. Before some interests-powers of some sort decided that if this went on it might give "our" serfs the idea that there might be an alternate path of being and existence, one that didn't demand a superstructure of leaders, media and banks to prop up this system.

And yes, ok, i get it, there will be globalization either by force, or consent, (this directly translates into you either do what the media tells you, or we do it the old fashioned way) as a famous cheerleader once said. But the important question is on whoms terms? And for whos benefit?

Anyway i don't want to make this too long atm so i'll just post some links for review by anyone who interested on the subject, a theoretical one and a modern real world example:

pathsthroughutopia.wordpress.com...
www.youtube.com...
www.spatialagency.net...
www.spectrezine.org...
www.nytimes.com...

P.S. And yes direct democracy is socialism, get over it, has been since ancient times, in the sense that a person has the authority to equally participate in the decision making process of his/her society directly
And lets face it "representative democracy" is not a democracy, you just participate in it in order to take the blame for your previous bad decision every 4 years for how things are going, which is: exactly as planned..
edit on 20-11-2011 by Belou because: More info added







 
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