Posted 1 year ago on March 8, 2012, 3:58 p.m. EST by struggleforfreedom80
This content is user submitted and not an official statement
(Today’s Society And How To Improve It - part I)
We have a system where we vote on politicians to run society on our behalf - a so called representative democracy. We’re not running things ourselves like we ought to do by more direct democracy and direct participation; instead politicians are working full time to do tasks based on the results of what we vote once every second year. Democracy has been reduced to just putting a piece of paper in a box, and letting other people make decisions that affect our lives in a big way. Decisions made by politicians are also often done on a centralized level, resulting in decisions being made far away from the people electing them. This type of democracy is a poor one; this type of representative democracy reduces democracy to being a "spectator sport" where we get to be in charge for just a couple of seconds voting - putting a piece of paper in a box - and then letting people in suits in charge for the rest of the years to come. This type of system creates a huge democratic deficit.
At the same time concentration of private power has increased. This kind of power also creates a democratic deficit. The financial elite have much of the wealth, they control the resources, the corporations and the means of production - things that affect our lives - yet we’ve never voted for them. This is highly undemocratic. People don’t control their own lives, workplaces and communities; instead the super rich non-elected minority make big decisions and control huge part of the society with their enormous wealth which is highly concentrated.
Not only are the rich and powerful in an undemocratic way controlling the economy as a whole in huge networks of transactions, investments and stock exchange, they also rule the institutions in society in a totalitarian way. The economic institutions in a capitalist society have a totalitarian model: a tyrannical non-democratic hierarchy in which the people at the top - the CEOs, owners etc - dictate how the institution is being run, what’s being produced, working conditions and so on, while people further down the hierarchy must follow their orders - a non-democratic hierarchy with control and power in the hands of the ones at the top. Capitalist institutions are in other words private tyrannies. These structures are in no way not even resembling democratic organization. Also here we see a huge democratic deficit.
These people, the politicians and private owners, are the ones making the main decisions in society, and we see a huge democratic deficit in both sectors. Now, that’s bad enough as it is, but unfortunately there’s another factor that is becoming an increasing problem: The close links between the two. These ties have gotten closer and closer, especially in the United States. These close ties have contributed to creating what I’d like to call a "right-wing vs less right-wing" model. As these ties between politicians and private tyrannies have gotten closer and closer, right-wing policies have gotten more and more influential in society. Not very surprising, since right-wing policies like tax cuts for businesses etc. is exactly what the private owners want. So what’s happened is that a vicious circle has developed with private owners attracting an increasing number of right-wing politicians enforcing policies that benefit them and make them more powerful, resulting in them getting even more influential on politicians.
So with this comes a political arena of different major parties, all of them - but some more than others - good friends with private enterprise, giving them more and more recourses and power, and by that making them more influential in society. In other words, right-wing parties and somewhat less right-wing parties taking turns governing, constantly competing on how they can convince most people with their lies and rhetoric. In the mean time the ruling party is privatizing and giving more and more tax cuts for the wealthy resulting in cuts in welfare and benefits for poor and the working class. This is the main reason why we see lots of people struggling to get by even though the society as a whole is richer and more efficient than ever. The wealth is being shoved into the pockets of the wealthy, while the working people have to fight over the crumbs, causing cynicism frustration and crime; and at the same time being duped to vote for politicians that mostly favor the interests of the wealthy.
Our society has a huge democratic deficit. This has to change. We must organize and create a free society with direct democracy and direct participation; democratic workplaces, democratic communities, working together to benefit the people, not private enterprise.