Even if you don’t follow Italian politics, the recent upset in the elections is significant. Italy’s Berlusconi was the first of the right populists to win power, and now Italy seems to have developed an immunity toward their propaganda strategy: “The idea is to target the lowest cultural level of the population. Use scare tactics, find enemies of all sorts, demonize them, then promise safety in the hands of a right-wing government.”
As The New York Times recently reported, “votes for the pro-Brexit Conservatives had 10 times the effective power of votes for the anti-Brexit Liberal Democrats” as a result of the electoral system known as “first past the post.”’ And as Phil and I discuss, a voter in Wyoming has 3.6 times the electoral influence as one in California.
Phil and I discuss some of the biggest structural problems with our elections and Constitution, as well as some of his ideas for solving them.
How come we can still stick with a procedure from the late eighteenth century, elections, believing they are synonymous with democracy? It’s a very, very recent procedure and it was originally not even conceived as a tool for democracy. Elections were introduced to stop democracy, rather than to make democracy possible. If innovation is truly important, let us rethink the key procedure we use to let people speak. Ticking a box is no longer an option.
There’s a lot of agitated Facebook chatter among my political friends locally about the labyrinthine tactical voting logics and ways of trying to stop Brexit in its tracks, while others claim to feel politically homeless and unrepresented by the political parties. What, only just now? Ah well, let’s get an election post out of the way…
State representative Joyce McCreight never thought she would run for office.