Sunday, July 10, 2011

The end of democracy

I often read on the Net that "the people" won't stand for this or that. Fantasy. As I have commented elsewhere:

How would the people raise a hue and cry?

- The papers and TV don’t represent us, we are merely a market sold to their advertisers
- MPs and Lords similarly have little interest in us, pursuing their own agendas and in some cases actually bought and paid for by powerful interests such as the EU with its revokable pensions
- Americans can demonstrate outside the White House but here it is now against the law to do so (even peacefully, such as reading aloud the names of recent war dead) within a measured distance of Downing Street
- public houses are no longer the gathering places and discussion centres they were
- the market places have been replaced by one-stop, fast-moving commercial fleecing operations like Tesco (when is the last time you stopped for a good natter and grumble there, on the way to the checkout? We stand in line like immigrants at the airport and are processed in near-silence).
- Internet, email and phone calls are mass-scanned by powerful computers for any sign of dissent.

Any means by which people used to assemble, discuss and become collectively activated has been neutralised. Most of us bloggers don’t know each other, where we live or what we look like. We merely raise a feeble protest and the powers that be, knowing that many of us are of a demographic that will not trouble them for many more years, permit our impotent grumbling.

I shall continue, not in hope that it will change things much, but as a standing reproach to those who have sold the freedoms that took our predecessors centuries of blood and toil to achieve.


James Higham said...

As someone who spent time in Russia, seeing the remnants of communism, this is where we're headed. All the signs are there and one of the most insidious is getting people to report on their neighbours.

Trouble is, though the UK is in the vanguard of this rush to post-democracy, nowhere else is immune either. Someone yesterday mentioned Canada and Australia - same thing there, still in embryonic form.

Paul said...

And what sort of society are you referring to there, James? I suspect you're referring to a vicious, selfish, very closed-minded society where very few people have real friends and people are always looking to get one over on everyone else.

James Higham said...

Yes, it was a devastated society, Paul.