How To Citizen: Democracy without Politicians

Submitted by webmaster on Sun, 05-03-2023 - 16:38

Schrijver, comedian en commentator Baratunde Thurston praat met Claudia Chwalisz (DemocracyNext) over deliberatieve democratie en echte beslismacht voor gelote burgers.

(begin met luisteren vanaf 8:20)

Podcast met Astra Taylor waarnaar verwezen wordt: How to Citizen: It’s All Greek to Me!

Belangrijke uitspraken:

Chwalisz: 'I really feel like it's a systemic problem: the short-termism, the fact that party politics and campaign financing and all these things come out on top in terms of what are the incentives for the collective public decisions we are taking; these are features  not bugs  of the system that we have today. And so how do we redesign the system and how do we shift power to new institutions of citizen participation, representation by lot, and deliberation.' (42:05)

Chwalisz: 'clearly this approach of just adding on a one-off citizens' assembly to a system that has a completely different set of incentives at heart, with the short-termism, the party politics, the campaign financing, the lobbying and so on: it's not working to actually change who's deciding, and how those decisions are taken at the end of the day.' (37:09)

Chwalisz: 'the dominant narrative today is these Citizens' Assemblies are just something that could or should complement our existing institutions and it's something that might enhance or help strengthen representative democracy as we know it today, and I feel like that actually has been detrimental to making the real fundamental change happen. And that's why we're trying to shift the narrative and open up an imagination that actually another democratic future is possible, and that we could be shifting power to Citizens' Assemblies. And this could eventually really be the heart of a democratic system, if we start to make those steps, taking us in that direction. And it means questioning the premise of elections. It means really bringing up our history of philosophy, and thinking like actually elections are not a democratic form of governing ourselves and this is not the only way of doing things. And it seems radical I think to some people to say these things today. And I think it's only when we start to question our own assumptions in this time of deep crisis, and open up an imagination that another way could be possible, that we're going to start seeing the real shifts of power.' (51.53)

Chwalisz benoemt verder dat top-down burgerberaden (geïnitieerd door de overheid) meer respons en betrokkenheid van burgers opleveren dan bottom-up georganiseerde burgerberaden (geïnitieerd vanuit het maatschappelijke middenveld).

Chwalisz: 'we also need to be giving citizens the way of shaping the agenda, because today it's so much shaped top down by who decides and how they frame a question or an issue or what might even be allowed to be on the table, and that needs to change as well.' (1:01:29)