Salohcin Discussions

Discuss various subjects.
 
HomeHome  FAQFAQ  SearchSearch  RegisterRegister  Log in  

Share | 
 

 Is Britain really a democracy?

Go down 
AuthorMessage
Wolf
Admin
avatar

Number of posts : 62
Age : 47
Location : Solihull, England
Registration date : 2008-07-21

PostSubject: Is Britain really a democracy?   Tue Jul 22, 2008 4:48 am

The UK parliament is often described as the mother of democracy, but are we really a democracy in Britain? Do you think that the government really listen to the people? Are politicians out of touch with real people? Should we have a different system to elect a government or make decisions in this country?

_________________
Back to top Go down
View user profile http://www.salohcin.co.uk
Nick

avatar

Number of posts : 102
Age : 47
Location : Birmingham, UK
Registration date : 2008-07-23

PostSubject: Re: Is Britain really a democracy?   Thu Jul 24, 2008 7:49 pm

Britain has more of an Oligarchy than a real democracy.

Definition of Oligarchy according to http://dictionary.reference.com/search?r=2&q=oligarchy
Quote :
a form of government in which all power is vested in a few persons or in a dominant class or clique; government by the few

The electorate is given the option of choosing between the leaders of certain political parties, who have, in turn, been chose by the members of those parties. This, to me smacks more of an Oligarchy than of true democracy which is defined by http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/democracy
Quote :
government by the people; a form of government in which the supreme power is vested in the people and exercised directly by them or by their elected agents under a free electoral system.

The reason why I consider it more of an oligarchy than a democracy is because we don’t really get to choose that elite group of politicians from whom the leaders are chosen, as the parties mainly choose among themselves who is elected to be an MP, where is a member loses their seat in one area then they are moved to another area where they can win their seat back again (normally in a safe seat). Whereas there has not really been a government by the people, with the supreme power vested in the people for a number of years in this country, as the government stopped really listening to the electorate in the 1980’s

Although there is a common distrust of politicians in this country and many people feel that politicians don’t listen to and are out of touch with the people, I actually believe that the vast majority of politicians enter politics with the best of intentions. Most politicians enter politics with the real desire to help people, to represent them honestly and fairly and to do the very best job that they can do for their constituents (with some variance in their beliefs of how to do that due to party differences). However, once they are elected, they are suddenly removed from their previous lives and mix with fewer and fewer of the electorate, and more with other MPs, political advisors, agents, writers, lobbyists, etc. The very nature of their job often means that they soon lose touch with most of the people they used to see on an everyday basis, often, at best, only encountering their constituents at surgeries or meetings. This isolation from the people they are supposed to be representing means that they have to rely more and more upon advisors, lobbyists and pollsters to tell them what their constituents are thinking and wanting. The problem here is that those advisors, lobbyists or pollsters often have their own political agendas that they wish to be acted upon, so may not entirely represent the public view if it may counteract their own agendas or beliefs. This is quite common, as when someone is promoted at work from the “shop floor” to management, then they may feel that they are still just as in touch with the other employees as they were before, but in truth those employees are treating them differently, because of their new authority and position, and so rarely express themselves as clearly as they did before the person was promoted. As such the promoted person floats away from mixing with their previous friends on the “shop floor” to new friends in management, as the old friends have become nervous of expressing themselves as they used to, or may be intimidated by the new position. This is what happens for the new MP too. All the people around them are now completely different to those that they mixed with before the were elected, and so their views, position and opinions change in line with these new people that they are mixing with. As such, even the most fairly-intentioned of MPs have their views altered, normally to be more in line with what the party leaders wish for them to think.

The fact that MPs have to split their time between Westminster and their constituencies further widens this separation from their constituents. Many MPs still make valiant attempts to keep in contact with the views of their constituents, but inevitably they are surrounded by more of their supporters, sycophants or lobbyists rather than a true mixture of people and views from their constituency. If the MP manages to climb the ranks in Westminster and become a minister, or shadow minister, then they are kept away from the public even more, and so become more and more separated from the people. So, it is unsurprising really that people consider ministers, leaders of the parties and the members of the cabinet to be out of touch with the people they are meant to be representing and governing.

If we really want a true democracy in Britain, then we need to completely change our political system in a number of ways:

A more representative method of election of representatives, with more direct contact between the constituency and the representative (maybe having two representatives to each area, so that they can split their duties between Westminster and their constituency, each doing 6 months at each and constantly keeping each other updated as to what is happening in their area).

A move away from party politics, where representatives are acting directly at the behest of their constituents rather than party leaders.

Directly financed political campaigns from the public coffers, rather than reliance on money from donations or supporters (this eliminates somewhat the influence that donors may have over the elected official).

A move away again from “professional” politicians and back to representatives being taken from the community at large.

Leaders elected directly by the electorate for a fixed term and non-connected to any political pressure group, so that the leaders are more inclined to act for the good of the country, rather than on behalf of special interest groups.

The pay of representatives set to the national average, to prevent people entering politics for the sake of personal greed.

A free and completely impartial media (which would probably mean needing to be publically run, but not influenced by the politicians in power), so that accurate and unbiased reporting of events are made available to all of the electorate. We really cannot rely on privately owned media, as this inevitably becomes biased by the owner and so cannot be trusted to report fairly and completely.

A better system of consultation between the public and the representatives, where if a member of the public is unhappy with how one representative handles their case, they may go to another representative (who may have a more sympathetic political leaning than the other representative may have had. This is a major problem with the system that we have at present where Conservative MPs may not be as inclined to handle social matters as a Labour MP might, and vice versa, where a Labour MP may not be as inclined to handle business matters as a Conservative MP might).

Plus various other changes to be determined by what the electorate choose that they want
Back to top Go down
View user profile http://www.salohcin.co.uk
Mike



Number of posts : 56
Location : Birmingham
Registration date : 2008-08-19

PostSubject: Re: Is Britain really a democracy?   Tue Aug 19, 2008 9:55 pm

I think you're quite right to point out that the higher someone gets in politics, the further away they move from the electorate. However, when you use the analogy of someone in a private company doing the same thing when they get promoted, you forget to emphasise that this is more than an analogy. Private companies probably have more influence on peoples' lives than government, and companies have no democratic procedures whatsoever. How many people get to vote for who they want as a manager? The parliamentary democracy we do have in this country only represents a small part of life, and we're sadly don't expect democracy to extend to other spheres of life.
Back to top Go down
View user profile
Nick

avatar

Number of posts : 102
Age : 47
Location : Birmingham, UK
Registration date : 2008-07-23

PostSubject: Re: Is Britain really a democracy?   Wed Aug 20, 2008 2:53 pm

I disagree slightly with the idea that there is no democracy within a company, as with a PLC, the shareholders do vote on the directors each AGM (in many cases but not all) and in smaller companies the management can be (and often has been) removed if the rest of the employees object to them (any businessman knows that if they have an unpopular management and unhappy workers then this will inevitably affect productivity and morale and so will dispose of unpopular management, even to the extreme of changing the ownership of the company, as a company where the employees are unhappy and dislike the management will inevitably go bust).
Back to top Go down
View user profile http://www.salohcin.co.uk
happyjo



Number of posts : 6
Registration date : 2008-08-16

PostSubject: Re: Is Britain really a democracy?   Sat Aug 23, 2008 1:24 am

dictatorship of the proletariat.
oohhh yeah im eighteen i can vote.....yipppeee.......more like yeah man i can go to the pub legaly and get served.
or whoppee i can claim jobseekers which will pay for me to go to the pub.
Back to top Go down
View user profile
sugar100

avatar

Number of posts : 4
Age : 50
Location : somewhere near glasgow, scotland
Registration date : 2008-09-05

PostSubject: Re: Is Britain really a democracy?   Fri Sep 05, 2008 7:25 pm

it depends how you describe democracy.... I dont think we are truly a democracy as once we have voted a party to power they then go on to do what they please regardless of the majority of the populations wishes. A true democracy would be every bill that is brought to parliament then being raised as a reforendum so the country could decide. But hey , what do i know ?
Back to top Go down
View user profile
Sponsored content




PostSubject: Re: Is Britain really a democracy?   

Back to top Go down
 
Is Britain really a democracy?
Back to top 
Page 1 of 1
 Similar topics
-
» Kurdistan Invest in Democracy 2011
» Was it necessary for Britain to enter WW1?
» Unbuilt Britain
» Gods and Goddesses : Cernunnos
» The Birthstone of Britain

Permissions in this forum:You cannot reply to topics in this forum
Salohcin Discussions :: Main Discussions Boards-
Jump to: