The fraud of democracy

Created 2006/08/20, last edited 2023/05/28
Contact: David K. Clarke – ©

I live in Australia, a nation with a democratic government. But do the ordinary people run the country, or is it run by a privileged elite?

Howard Zinn, in his People's History of the United States, points out that in that country one percent of the people own one third of the wealth. The figure for Australia would be similar. He points out that the majority are kept disunited, black against white, employed against unemployed, small business owners against workers, native born against foreign born, intellectuals and professionals against uneducated and unskilled.

The real enemies of the common people are those among the filthy rich who use their wealth to corrupt the system, like Gina Rinehart and Clive Palmer.


Is there a better way?

I've written on how to Vote smart, and the highly successful true democracy group Climate 200 on another page. You could also see my page on a confederation of independent politicians and candidates.
It is the one percent elite that have all the power, in Australia it is they who pulled Prime Minister Howard's strings; and I don't think the situation with the Rudd Labor government was very different, the Labor party receives campaign donations from very many of the same big corporations as does the Liberal party, they would be lobbied by the same representatives of the powerful few.

If we lived in a nation that had a blatantly dictatorial government we would be restive, we would work toward a more representative system. However, we live in a 'functional' democracy, we vote for our governments. We have come to believe that we live under, to modify Voltaire's phrase, the best of all possible systems.

The fact is that we are all swindled, and we deceive ourselves. So long as the majority of Australians continue to vote for one or other of the major political parties, rather than for people who genuinely will represent our needs and aspirations, our country will continue to be run by the wealthy elite. (See Vote Smart, another page on this site.)

Consider the USA 'alliance' and the Iraq war for example. Both major parties seem incapable of doing anything other than following the US lead, both would probably have followed the US into the Iraq war. Why? The Australian people were against it. I am forced to the conclusion that whoever has influence over Howard told him to do these things.

This is the best of all possible systems for the ruling elite; they run the country while the people kid themselves that they are running the country by voting for their party of choice.