The Pitfalls of Representative Democracy

Day by day we can realize that representative democracy reduces the participation of citizens to a minimum. Apparent in only the right to cast a vote every four years and the participation of the more daring, in a dubious political parties of internal democracy, one must remember cases like Borrel at the designation PSOE Rajoy as finger Aznar’s successor. The reality that we find today is that we enjoy more rights as consumers of that gives us our status as citizens. Thus, if we cheated in the purchase of any goods or services can make a complaint, go to mediation and / or arbitration and finally: a trial. But what can we do if we are deceived by the political shift? The answer is, nothing. While it is true that, at the end of his term of four years, if that is submitted to his re-election, we will punish him at the level of votes, but in no case gives us the opportunity to ask responsibilities directly.

To this we must add that we live in a society that is becoming more prepared and we are surrounded by an increasingly sophisticated technology that opens new horizons for citizen participation in politics. Therefore, nothing justified that we anchored in a representative democracy that constrain the full development of the concepts of citizen and citizenship, understood as members of a political community, with a series of duties and a number of rights, of which The most important are the rights of political participation. Seeing the steady loss of legitimacy of the current representative system, exacerbated at present by an electoral system that promotes bipartisanship and left without representation for millions of citizens, it is a prerequisite to raise the deepening democratic institutions through mechanisms that allow greater participation and greater control of citizens on public affairs. * Some of these mechanisms are functioning in countries as diverse as Switzerland, USA and Uruguay are: The right of citizens to the submission of a legislative initiative and, after deliberation by parliament, will be submitted to binding referendum. (Implemented in Switzerland and 24 U.S. states). The right of citizens to the filing of a Constitutional Reform Initiative, a mechanism similar to the previous. (Implemented in Switzerland and Uruguay) The recall of members elected through the collection of a certain number of signatures of voters in a given time and the subsequent submission to a referendum on the question of disqualification.

Mechanism that makes a political absurdity that betray the expectations of their voters. (Implemented in Switzerland and some U.S. states). The binding referendum for approval of magma important legislative decisions such as the reform of the constitution or accession to international treaties. (Implemented in Switzerland and Australia). Direct election of mayors, presidents, judges, prosecutors, etc. Therefore, in these We are now at an important time to open the debate on these issues and begin to raise participation mechanisms of this type, in our own organizations **. Edgar Alejandro Trujillo Freivalds * For more in depth on how these mechanisms suggest the site of the organization More Democracy (member of the International Democracy European platform. There are several cases of organizations both political and nonpolitical in Spain who are using Internet (forums, discussion groups, electronic voting) to facilitate the participation of its members and sympathizers in the discussions and decisions within the organization.