Monday, 30 October 2017

The Dictatorship of the Majority




"The paper vote is an illusion of Democracy, where the electorate has been replaced by an audience panel" 
Paulo Ferreira

In my school days I lived an intense political life. It was the time of the Portuguese Revolution, where suddenly a stifling, organised society was replaced by hope, by political debate, by freedom. Very soon, in a matter of days, new parties surfaced and none was better organised than the Portuguese Communist Party. Their knowledge of the political process, of public gatherings, assemblies, voting, was second to none. The scale of manipulation was staggering and soon they took over most of the national structures through a clean cut democratic process. Their youth movement UEC (United Communist Students) soon was agitating school to create student commitees and associations. I remember going to the first assembly to vote the statutes. This assembly was cunningly scheduled for an evening of 1974 at 6.30pm, after school lessons were finished, so there were about 50 people there (on a school of 2500 students).

The chair was voted, the question was asked "is this assembly representative?" followed by an unanimous raise of hands including mine. My logic at 14 years of age was, I was there, I was not going to waste my time to have to do it again. The assembly carried on, most of the attendants were UEC, they had a prepared list of statutes and in 30 minutes all the roles were voted with members of Communist Students. And it took 18 months to root them out because of their directive roles, as per their statutes, they could only be deposed by a General Assembly of more than half of the students (1,250!!!) and with a majority of at least 60%. It was done and Real Democracy won that day.

Why all this? All this because of the infantile way current democracies are running their business... with the vote! Not that the vote is not useful, but it can be counted in a very warped way. It is unthinkable that, something to be voted by the general public as important as currency, independence, leaving an economical area, can be made with a simple vote dictatorship. It is pure laziness and misrepresentation of what Democracy is. Democracy is the will of the people, ALL the people, not the ones that appeared to vote like my "fellow" communists did that evening. 

In the classic Athens time, everybody appeared to say their vote, raising their arm. A paper vote is no longer a representation of the will of the people, not for the big issues I mentioned above. It is just a game, harmless in a way, to put representatives in power to speak for the people and, believe me, I have nothing against that process. It is finite, it has a closed term and it tends to even out every period. It works, well, more or less. 

It is when big questions are put into the public, with the lame, lazy, Western view of Democracy (by paper, because it is the process that validates scheduled standard intelligentsia in power), that things get corrupted. Big questions cannot be decided by a single majority i. e. by more than 50% of the people that appeared to vote. Why? Because they are not representative. 

That is why Scottish Independence, Brexit, Catalunya are a scam, a manipulated process, quite similar to what my fellow Student Communists were using in that Portuguese Summer of 1974. Big questions need to have big processes, big answers. Brexit could only happen if 60% of the registered voters had voted yes, the same for Scottish or Catalunya independence. More, I would even dare to say that the registered voters that wanted to vote "No" did not even need to cast their vote, by default their vote was already stated on the question. It would be up to the ones that want to make the change to mobilise themselves to fulfil the task and be responsible for the outcome. Not like this, with a representation of 20% deciding forever, economic or political secession. That is not a Democracy. That is fascism, similar with votes that were being  cast in Italy and Germany in 1930. We don't need that anymore, do we?

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