But how many of us even choose to vote? With a record number low turn out to the ballot box there is proof that many people feel so disenchanted with the whole system they see no point in casting a vote for parties that are barely distinguishable in their political rhetoric.
The thin veil of democracy has long been used by men the world over in order to gain power in one respect or another. The vast majority in the west feel we live in a democratic society but scratch the surface of this claim and it’s not hard to see the cracks soon start to appear.
So what exactly does the term democracy mean?
The idea is government by the people; power is meant to be vested in the people and exercised by the elected agents in a free electoral process.
The problem lies in the fact that the real power lies with those who control the wealth of society. A prime example of this is the funding the main political parties receives from conglomerate media companies, who can throw their weight behind any campaign and have a direct effect on the outcome of an election. It’s a frightening prospect that a ‘democratic’ election can be influenced in this way.
Pharmaceutical companies are another big player in this respect; having thrown millions of pounds behind a campaign they expect favourable decisions when bringing new drugs to market. The bottom line is money does all the talking. It’s not about fairness and democracy it boils down to the capitalist mantra of ‘make as much money as you can, even at the expense of your fellow man’
It seems the biggest fear man has is freedom. The worst outrages in human history did not take place in the absence of authority and government, but were actually carried out by them behind claims of acting in the common interest; Nazi Germany, Stalinist Soviet Union and the Khmer Rouge in Cambodia. The list is endless and goes back further in history and is even seen happening today in Egypt the acts by these governments are all carried out under the guise of a collective interest.
In relation to the U.K. a recent example of the government plucking a new form of taxation out of thin air is the so called ‘bedroom tax’ we are all subject to this tax (depending on your housing circumstances) and directly effects those at the very bottom of the economic ladder.
For those who cannot pay this tax where is the one bedroom social housing the government expects them to move into? It doesn’t exist. Of course those at the top see no fuss about this as it’s an issue that doesn’t affect them and ensures they don’t have to pay a higher slice of tax.
Tolstoy perhaps summed it up best, he believed ‘all authority impeded the power of independent action by individuals but only the individual has any authentic understanding of his or her circumstances and how to change it’
Take the power back.