Thursday, November 22, 2007

What is Representative Democracy?

What America needs most... the movement that must take place before any further change can really happen... is a movement for democracy, a movement to reinvigorate American democratic institutions, democratic citizenship and democratic culture. We have lost our way and most of us don't even really know what democracy is, how it works and what our responsibilities are as citizens.

America's democratic institutions - like elections, Congress, etc. - are controlled overwhelmingly by large monied interests, wealthy individuals and corporations. As such, American democracy primarily respond to, reflect and works for, those interests over the interests of everyday citizens. That is uncontroversial and openly apparent. Then, when we do discuss democracy, the terms of the debate are often set by those in power, and are articulated within the context of the market (wealth = free speech). That terrain needs to be changed, the terms of the deabate fundamentally altered.

First, we need to remind ourselves what democracy is all about. To that end, I think that Michael Moore's interview with British Labour leader Tomy Benn in his last film is worth watching and considering.

Check it out.

Spread the word...

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