If you are not free to decide collective issues, you are not free, direct democracy makes you free

Direct democracy must become a fundamental human right.

Direct democracy is to representative democracy what the right of colonies to govern themselves was to colonial powers.

I do not know why most people in representative democracies seem to accept that system as the most desirable system. I say this because there is a better alternative to representative democracy. That alternative is direct democracy.

Direct democracy turns representative democracy on its head; instead of the elected representatives making the decisions on issues, the voters do.

Most voters I know now are reasonable and competent people, if we bring direct democracy they will vote with common sense.

They would vote responsibly to decide on: the use car seat belts, entering a commercial treaty,  abolition of the death penalty, increases or reductions of budgets, taxes, building new roads or railroads, the military budget, modification of any law or the constitution, introduction of new laws and regulations, etc.

Decisions made by voters, after proper public debate, are more representative of the voters, but are also better decisions than decisions made by elected politicians. There are several reasons for that.

Among the voters, there are many skilled experts on any issue; those experts can explain to voters in conferences, documents, debates, etc., the pros and cons of issues.

Another one is that ordinary citizens want the best for themselves, their families, their towns and their country. They also want their children to have a wonderful future. This is better because lobbies can not pressure citizens the way lobbies pressure politicians, often at the expense of the common good.

Another important reason that strengthens decision-making in a direct democracy is that decisions made by the citizens have a democratic credibility that no decision made by elected representatives has.

Even if a direct democracy is not fully a direct democracy, such is the case of Switzerland, because they still have elected representatives, it can be a pretty good direct democracy.

This happens in Switzerland because the Swiss people have more say than their elected representatives on any important issue. They even have more power that the Swiss Supreme Court on constitutional issues.

For example, there is no way the Swiss Supreme Court could decide, like the US Supreme Court did some time ago, that corporations, unions and other entities can contribute as much money as they want to political campaigns. The result of that thoughtless, yes thoughtless, decision by half plus one of the US Supreme Court Judges has been the almost total control of electoral campaigns by those with money. Money controls much of the messages in the US now.

The Swiss have direct democracy, nobody else come close, because the people have control; not the politicians, not the judges, not big money.

Swiss-style direct democracy is spreading without the Swiss pushing it. Taiwan is one important recent case. It is important because a few decades ago, it was a dictatorship, like its neighbour China still is. But this also means China is also capable of becoming a direct democracy. Imagine how that would advance the whole of humanity, not just the Chinese…

To summarise; “We pay we decide”.

If you are not free to decide collective issues, you are not really free; somebody else has that freedom to decide “on your behalf”. Direct democracy stops that and makes you free.

 

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