It is a piece arguing very cogently that elections do not a democracy make. True 'power to the people' is in controlling those that seek to rule us. Something which eludes us, common folks, at the moment.
Representative democracy, as practised in the Netherlands is all well and good, until we encounter the situation where 63% of the population reject a European 'Constitution' that is supported by 85% of our elected MPs. When only 85 Bundestag members, out of a 611, vote according to the wishes of at least 70% of the German people, there is a problem with 'representative' democracy in this, the second decade of the 21st century.
As Dr. North notes, the line which once marked the division between left and right has now rotated ninety degrees. We are no longer left or right, but above the line or below it. Most of us are below it and those above are trying very hard to shut us out of the decision loop. It is time to resist being side-lined. It is time to retake our responsibilities as citizens of our homes.
With Dr. North, I am convinced that there is to be far greater trust in the sense of the people than there is in the good faith of the ruling élites.
My fundamental premise is that, in a society where people truly have power, they will grow into their responsibilities and use their power wisely. Even if they do not always do so, they can do no worse than our élites, who periodically "guide" us to war, famine and disaster, all in the name of peace and stability.As long as we partake in the elections we're served, given the choice between variations of the exact same colour and creed, we will not have gained anything. We will still be ruled, we will not be truly free.
Democracy, therefore, is the destination. We seek democracy, in its true sense, not the pastiche that masquerades as such.
Free people do not have rulers. Their governments are servants.
If you still have that idealistic streak about you, even after all these years, this is the fundamental thought to get behind, to strife for: Give us the power to control our rulers, give us the power over the purse strings.
It is a longish piece, but well worth the read. The principles laid out apply beyond the borders of the British Isles. It is, I think, well worth something to keep in mind as we head into the storm