Ain't that the truth. We have a very similar landscape over here although we have different set of systems. The common feature for the general elections of both our noble countries though is the plurality voting system. It's my view that plurality systems encourage an 'Us vs Them' politics of identity, which inevitably tends towards the extremes, as well as an attitude of entitlement among the political class.Sean Hayden wrote: ↑Wed Nov 18, 2020 5:24 pmBut I don't think that's true. Granted, a system, properly designed and maintained, should encourage in both the people that manage it, and the public, the kind of support for itself that is necessary to ensure its continued success. But it cannot by itself, by design, prevent its eventual corruption, or make the kind of people who run it irrelevant.I think the conceptual issue to get over here is that it doesn't really matter who gets elected into power if the administrative systems are transparent, responsive, politically independent, and scrutable - but this has to be built into the system from the ground up.
For example, a transparent system relies on people responding to what they see in a particular way. Corruption is rampant in our politics. It is not hidden. But the public does not respond in the way that people who advocate for transparency would hope. Many do, but not enough. They lack what is required by such a system to ensure it works. Furthermore, they are divided as to what constitutes corruption in the first place, and from those divisions you may eventually find support to undermine protections anyway.
I'm not arguing against making changes, or saying that nothing is better than what we have. My point has been that it's difficult to judge the system while lunatics are running it, and the people are more important than the system.
I totally agree that a system 'cannot by itself, by design, prevent its eventual corruption, or make the kind of people who run it irrelevant' but just as in our lives and communities a re-evaluation of circumstances and an element of self-reflection can be encourages and programmed in. As someone once said about the Soviet Union, everything was always forever until it wasn't. Things can change.
Of course, my understanding of the US is limited, but is there a general feeling that the electoral and representational system are in a mess, or maybe a feeling that the systems are fine but the people in charge of them are an utter shambles? Over here the main parties view the system as a kind of brute fact - it just is - and appeals to tradition and the political version of natural law theory are used to give people the impression not just that we have no real say in or control over the system but that it's fruitless to even try to effect change: we are but leaves in the wind, blown hither an yon by unfathomable forces beyond our ken. This attitude is rife and, unsurprisingly enough, ensures that political imperatives trump people's material needs on any and every issue: that's just how things are.