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I have responded to some criticism of my letter on Booman as follows:

The criticisms of UK democracy are intended to provide a context for Brexiteer's often entirely unjustified criticisms of EU democracy.  For instance the EU Commission is often criticised as "unelected Brussels bureaucrats". Firstly, it is effectively the EU Civil Service. The UK's Whitehall based civil service is equally influential and similarly unelected. No country elects their civil service. Secondly the top Commssion officials - the Commissioners themselves, are all nominated by elected governments and must be approved by the European Parliament. Thirdly, Juncker, the President of the Commission, was elected by the European Council 26-2 (With David Cameron and Victor Orban voting against), and the European Parliament by 422 to 250. Few political leaders can boast such large democratic mandates.

Obviously other European democracies are not entirely flawless, but none have so many factors inhibiting an accurate representation of the popular will. You can have good or bad written constitutions, but if they have been voted for by the people, then the people only have themselves to blame. The House of Lord's is still quite influential and embeds a largely class based system of governance into the political culture. The FPTP single seat constituency system encourages a polarised, binary and adversarial political culture. When modest reforms were proposed by the LibDems, the two main parties united against them to preserve their duopoly. The UK is now paying the price.

Generally when UK politicians criticise the EU's lack of democracy, they are venting their failure to get their wishes and interests imposed on other member states. This has poisoned UK political discourse for 45 years - and damaged the EU as well. It's time they were called on their hypocrisy.



Index of Frank's Diaries
by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Tue Jan 29th, 2019 at 11:23:26 AM EST

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