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Delo - Slovenia | Friday, May 9, 2014

Mimi Podkrižnik wants democracy by casting lots

The widespread disinterest in the European elections is proof that Western democracy has reached its limits, political editor Mimi Podkrižnik writes in the left-liberal daily Delo. As an alternative she suggests that parliamentarians should be chosen by casting lots, drawing on ideas developed by the Belgian writer David Van Reybrouck in his book Against Elections: "The provocative Belgian is not the only one convinced that the idea of an election by drawing lots, which was already practised in Ancient Greece, is a democratic and thus a completely acceptable method. ... Certainly, many people say the idea's time hasn't come yet. But why not cast lots when changes in the system are so clearly necessary? When our politicians are hardly respected and increasingly open to bribery? In a society where technology is developing at such a rapid pace, why are we afraid of new approaches? Why do we cling to organisational forms which, according to the Belgian, are archaic and primitive? Web forums and chatrooms are the proof that voters clearly still have points of view, political passions and strength of will. They can clearly express their wishes when politicians allow them to. But as long as the political class continues to see the voters as an inferior herd we will remain stuck in our old patterns."

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