‘An electorate of fools manipulated by a small group of clever bastards.’ This is how I’m tempted to see ‘democracy’ in Britain and the United States just now. Is that fair?
If so, the solutions seem to be straightforward. Don’t ditch democracy. But (1) educate the democracy politically. This is difficult to do in a way people will respect, I grant: ‘political education’ has a dodgy reputation; but simple lessons in rational thinking and checking sources (see https://bernardjporter.com/2018/03/01/kallkritik/) might be a start. (2) Take a leaf out of the clever-clog Right’s book, and learn how to ‘game’ the political system in the same way, albeit to other ends, and more ethically.
This article from Time magazine shows how it can be done; and apparently was done, in the last US Presidential election, to counter the Right’s clever tricks and get Joe elected: https://time.com/5936036/secret-2020-election-campaign/. (Thanks, RR.) We need something like that in Britain, if it’s not too late; a Dominic Cummings of our – that is the Left’s – own.
(PS. That’s as well as electoral and press reforms, of course.)
And at the moment the Labour Party is floundering around, wrapping its itself in the union flag in response to platitudes about patriotism, or lack of it, in the Brexit era. Harold Wilson famously said in 1962 that the Labour Party is moral crusade or it’s nothing, and when it loses sight of that it’s in danger of becoming a different kind of party.
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