Monday, 28 November 2011

Bankrupt Democracy

In a fascinating MoneyWeek article Tim Price wrote "A combination of western governments and those countries' banking sectors is effectively insolvent. The problem is one of democracy itself. The system sows the seeds of its own destruction when a critical mass of voters appreciates that it can vote itself privileges. Politicians who can rarely see further than the next election are happy to provide them. A state of entitlement then sets in, with the wealth-creating private sector crowded out and milked for taxes. In one sense government policy is predestined to fail because, as Mrs Thatcher observed, sooner or later the government runs out of your money."
This may be true for most western governments, but the same problems don't exist in Switzerland, which gives voters much more power. Surely, by Tim's analysis of cause and effect, Swiss voters, in their assumed selfishness, would have crashed their economy sooner. But it remains strong. Why? Because their system integrates everyone into a common society with shared responsibilities and, by being involved in politics, they educate themselves about the issues, the pros and cons, and come to balanced decisions. Interactive Democracy has every chance of doing the same.
("Eurozone governments are now too big to succeed" by Tim Price, MoneyWeek, 25/11/2011)

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