Category: Electoral Reform

The US has foiled a coup, but could we?

Mick Fletcher

Several writers, including West Country Bylines’s Tom Scott and Sadie Parker, have drawn attention to the disturbing parallels between the anti-democratic activities of Trump in the USA and Johnson here. Many, however, are reluctant to accept that Johnson is in effect Britain’s Trump, despite the fact that this dubious accolade was bestowed by none other […]

Dark Wednesday: Trumpism has also stained and frayed British democracy

Sadie Parker
montage of Johnson and Trump pictured together

Judging by the liveliness of social media platforms well into the night, as 6 January rolled into 7 January on the European side of the Atlantic, half the UK was glued to CNN – watching agog as insurrectionists invaded government offices in Washington D.C. They stormed the Capitol building, the heart of American democracy, equipped […]

Hope and horror

Anthea Simmons

I had begun an article on the confirmation of more hopeful signs for democracy in the USA coming from the run-off elections in Georgia…and not because Democrats won, but because the long hard effort to secure voter engagement right across the electorate had paid off. I will return to the subject, because there are important […]

“A bad Brexit deal done by bad people in a bad way” Dr Philip Lee

Editor-in-chief

This short but powerful thread from former Conservative MP, Justice minister and part time GP Dr Philip Lee warrants sharing far and wide. “This is a bad #Brexit deal done by bad people in a bad way. It doesn’t have the public’s explicit informed consent. It bears little relation to Vote Leave’s promises in 2016. […]

Trump pardons, Johnson ennobles – the swamp deepens

Anthea Simmons

It is impossible to shake off the sense that decent people, on both sides of the pond, are being brazenly trolled by their corrupt and mendacious leaders. “Look what I can do!” Trump and Johnson seem to say, “and there’s not a darned/damned thing you can do to to stop me.” Trump’s sick execution spree […]

2026: an irreverent look into the future

Devon Doodler

It is the Autumn of 2026. The general election of late 2024 produced historically low voter participation and resulted in no overall parliamentary majority for any single party. A Government of National Unity has now been formed, following a protracted period of bitter in-fighting amongst Tory MPs about the dire consequences of Brexit on the […]

People, Poverty, Power

Catrina Davies

Cornwall-based author Catrina Davies offers some tips for leading a better life on this beautiful planet – and for changing the broken system that is driving poverty and environmental destruction. Last Saturday I was on the BBC, talking to Simon Reeve about Cornwall and housing. Many of you have written to me about it, via email […]

Time for the wisdom of the people

Laurie Taylor

I’ve been reading quite a bit by Fintan O’Toole, lately… talks on YouTube and most recently his book Heroic Failure: Brexit and the Politics of Pain. For me, he really helps my understanding of all things Brexit, the history of Ireland/Northern Ireland, and much more. I find he makes the ‘warp and weft’ of it […]

Can a survey really be so bad by accident?

Mick Fletcher

When I was alerted to the fact that the public administration and constitutional affairs committee (PACAC) of the House of Commons had produced a survey asking members of the public about priorities for a constitution, democracy and rights commission, I sought it out. Like many, I think there are serious flaws in our democratic processes […]

Make votes matter! A personal perspective

Laurie Taylor

I left London in 1973-74. I left a place and society that I saw as fragile and dysfunctional; a sort of fools’ paradise’. During my two years as a policeman in the West End, I questioned so much of what I saw around me, aided and abetted by E. F. Schumacher, G.I. Gurdjieff, Rachel Carson and […]

EuroDog on Democracy Day: make votes matter!

EuroDog

The first past the post (FPTP) electoral system – which bequeathed the Conservatives an unwarranted 80 seat majority in December 2019 – has enabled the Prime Minister, cabinet and government to act with impunity and unrivalled incompetence and with scant regard for the best interests of the electorate. Voting behaviour would change with proportional representation […]

Our democracy is in danger. We must have electoral reform.

Anthea Simmons

Want to make your vote matter? Feel that now, more than ever, we need a system that prevents an arrogant, corrupt and incompetent government (elected by a minority) from riding roughshod over every standard of decency, honesty and integrity? You do vote, right? Every election? You don’t bother? Why is that? Ahh. OK. You live […]

Of ermine and short-tailed weasels

Sadie Parker

When you read through the announcement of honours and peerages — the Dissolution Peerages of 2019 and the Political Peerages of 2020 — and find that awarding the former prime minister’s husband a knighthood and the current prime minister’s brother a peerage are the least controversial items on the list, you know the country is […]

Power without a right

Ann Higgins

A constitution based on unwritten rules and gentlemen’s agreements is a poor defence against shameless and determined rule-breakers. Listening to interminable lectures on UK constitutional law many years ago, I little thought it would be at the forefront of a political power struggle some 40 years later. Yet such is the battleground for the current […]

Stop the rot!

Sadie Parker
rotting fish

Matthew Goodwin, professor of politics at Kent University, darling of the Right and a regular on the punditry circuit, recently made an astonishing claim. “Reaction to Gove’s [Ditchley] speech is revealing,” he tweeted. “One side has ideas about how to send power down not up, plus change government. The other side is still struggling to […]