The goal is representative democracy – bottom up.
Not political party-elite command democracy – top down.
Joseph Schumpeter defined the democratic method: “… that institutional arrangement for arriving at political decisions … making the people … decide issues through the election of individuals who … assemble in order to carry out its will.” Capitalism, Socialism and Democracy (1942) – Joseph A. Schumpeter, HarperCollins.
That is, individuals – not political party elites.
In an Inclusive Democracy the people elect individuals to represent them in the governing legislative body. There, the collective representatives formulate inclusive policies and laws based on the needs and aspirations expressed by constituents.
On behalf of their constituents, the elected representatives will give “all citizens the chance to participate equally in economic, social, political, and cultural life”. (6 Degrees – RBC Report).
The populace will no longer be guided, or misguided, by a polarized political party.
Inclusive v. Exclusive
To compare the foregoing with political party-based Exclusive Democracy practiced today, you need only to understand the meanings of inclusive and exclusive. As Larry Diamond wrote in The Spirit of Democracy:
“The very essence of democracy is that it reflects people power and not simply the constitutional choice of enlightened elites”
Why Inclusive Democracy?
Today, the political party elites formulate policy. The elected representatives are tasked with carrying the party’s message to the voters. The voices of the voters are largely unheard or ignored. Furthermore, because political parties represent a particular left-to-right segment of society, party elite offerings are often exclusive and do not address the needs and aspirations of other societal segments.
- Inclusive Democracy is the evolved next Era of Democracy; people representation in a bottom-up process through elected representatives from all regions of the nation.
- Inclusive is not the top-down process of Exclusive Democracy, whereby the political elites project their exclusive views on the populace in their quest to achieve political dominance.
In an Inclusive Democracy there will be no political parties, and thus, through the elected-representatives, direct representation of the populace will be achieved. Policy formation will be a bottom-up process. The populace will be as close as possible to the governing process.
Inclusive Democracy is a representative form of democracy. That is, an independent Elected Representative (“ER”) is elected to represent the residents of a constituency in the unicameral legislature of the nation.
For clarification, and contrary to the view of many, the populace is capable of participating in government in a meaningful and competent way. They do have access to the necessary information, and the intelligence, wisdom, experience, and character to voice their views, needs, and aspirations. Inclusivity demands the participation of the people, all of the people. That is representative Democracy, and the need for it has never been greater.
The Elected Representatives will:
- From the Canada Assembly, elect an ER to be the National Minister. She/he will be mandated to lead the government until the next general election four years hence.
- Coalesce the views of residents of the constituencies and include the collective views in policy formation.
- Openly debate and vote on policy proposals. The Canada Assembly will be responsible for all policy generation and the formation of the laws of the land.
Time to Evolve
The briefly described foregoing Inclusive Democracy solution addresses the problem of Exclusive Democracy as practiced today. Political party elites have hijacked the democratic process. The elites generate policy and direct the elected representatives to deliver the message to the voters, with the expectation that the voters will vote for the party platform irrespective of the elected representatives. That is a top-down process and is not representative democracy, but rather benevolent autocracy. Democracy, as a preferred model for governing, is endangered by the exclusive actions of political party elites.
To save democracy, now is the time to evolve to Inclusive Democracy. Otherwise, autocracy is on the horizon waiting to fill the impending void as Exclusive Democracy evolves to extinction. That is an undemocratic outcome that the citizens must be given the opportunity to reject.
Stay tuned – Jon
Next post: The Political Spectrum & Labels