Andrew Cadman: Direct democracy is the only answer to corrosive identity politics

Do you remember when, one by one, as the terrible grooming scandals were exposed, MPs walked the plank in Rotherham, Rochdale, Oxford and Newcastle? After all, they had let down a significant demographic of their constituents in the most terrible way.

How much more offensive can you get than to be regarded as a piece of meat? To be used, raped and discarded like tissue paper? Surely the daughters of the salt of the earth, the people whose ancestors built the Labour Party, would figure very highly in that party’s priorities?

Of course you don’t: the brutal truth is that those poor girls do not matter at all. As the saying goes, “if you want to see who has power over you, see who you can’t criticise.” The endless pandering towards Islam and reluctance to talk about the terrible, rebarbative subcultures that it spawns has many reasons, not least rooted in politically correct ideology. However, it is also a symptom of the fundamental rottenness of purely “representative” democracy – where all votes are equal, but some votes are far, far more equal than others.

The reason Sarah Champion had to walk the plank is because the Muslim vote is of vital importance to Labour and, of course, will continue to be so as that demographic rapidly grows. Crucially, for cultural reasons that stem ultimately from Sunni Muslim theology, many Muslim communities vote as a collective block on the say-so of community elders. This is capable of producing huge swings in voting patterns, as we have seen in many constituencies where Muslims are a substantial proportion of the electorate.

Although Muslims are just under 5 per cent of the population, this gives them enormous disproportionate power, particularly with regard to the Labour Party. It is almost certainly this consideration that led Jack Straw and Tony Blair to change the Primary Purpose rule in 1997, which greatly contributed to a huge increase in Muslim immigration, much of it from areas of the Islamic world with backward social attitudes, and greatly exacerbating the sectarian problems in society we have today.

It’s the same in other areas: white working class girls may not matter much to politicians, but the votes of professional middle class women – a demographic that is more likely to vote and more likely to be swing voters than practically any other – matters a great deal. Hence the hugely disproportionate influence of feminism in our society and the skew in government policy it produces.

All over the Western world, representative forms of government have presided over the fragmentation of societies, which are now more atomised, more uncertain and confused than ever before. Fixated on their careers, politicians are highly sensitive to target demographics that can swing an election, rather than the health or cohesiveness of society as a whole.

No system is perfect, but it is nonetheless difficult to escape the conclusion that so-called “representative” democracy can never restore true cohesiveness to our society. It has become – and will remain – the plaything of a corporatist elite. Thus, as time goes on, we become ever more fragmented – chopped up, sliced and diced and herded into buckets of identity politics for their convenience. Instead, we must move towards a system of voter-driven direct democracy where politicians will be forced to confront sensitive issues rather than suppress them.

(Image: Piet Theisohn)

Andrew Cadman

  • Colkitto03

    Brilliant article, so very true.
    The problem in the western democracies is that the Mainstream Media has utterly failed in its duty to hold power to account. The ‘Fourth estate’ was supposed to represent and defend the interests of the people.
    The Media and Political class have become indistinguishable. They are related to each other, they are married to each other, they went to school and university together.
    In the last fortnight it has become clear that 99% of them cannot bring themselves to say that what is common factor in ‘Asian’ rape gangs is not actually country of origin but religion.

    • getahead

      Mainstream media are controlled by the same rich men’s clubs as the politicians.

    • mudlark2

      You are absolutely right about the failure of the political and media class to hold power to account. Glance through any newspaper and you will see the media focusing on some ridiculous or trivial aspect of a story rather than dealing with what’s really happening. Hence we have this headline in today’s ‘Guardian’ – ‘Can cities ever be made safe against terrorists?’ I love the use of the passive tense there – very clever. As for the political class, I don’t believe that the parties can ever be reformed. I had hoped that the referendum result might have provoked a complete political realignment but we live in Britain where everything is fudged and the establishment always survives unscathed.

      • Colkitto03

        I quite agree, like you I had hoped the referendum would have caused a Damascene conversion among our Politicos and our Press.
        Ironically for me, the thing that gives me hope that the nails are going into the Remain coffin, is actually that Corbyn is anti European. That is something thar MSM never chose to understand and it has really taken the wind out of their sails

        • mudlark2

          That’s true, but Corbyn didn’t have the guts to state that sentiment clearly during the last election campaign, in case his Momentum supporters deserted him. No mainstream politician has the strength of conviction nor the will to risk his or her own interests in favour of what is best for this country.

  • paul parmenter

    An important article. It exposes the reality: that politics is about power above all else. They even begin with the same two letters. And power corrupts. There is the link.

    Politicians do not just electioneer at election time. They are at it continuously. Whatever they may claim about wanting to improve society, what they really want is the power to tell all the rest of us what to do, how to act and how to think. Fairness, morality, justice, all these are just tools to be manipulated in the greater cause of putting themselves at the top of the tree and staying there.

  • Ravenscar

    Instead, we must move towards a system of voter-driven direct democracy where politicians will be forced to confront sensitive issues rather than suppress them.

    I simply could not agree more with you Mr. Cadman, however, the problem is how to achieve the above and that’s a multi £trillion question.

    I don’t wish at all to gainsay anything you’ve alluded to in your blogpost but Mr. Cadman you and me and others on here, we swim against a tidal wave and the cultural Marxists are kings of the surf, riding 100′ breakers and drowning our enfeebled ‘crawl’.

    ‘They’ [nannystate Gestapo] were at it again yesterday ordering the ‘food’ companies to rein in the calories and all of which makes me smile in black humour – ‘more top down edicts!’ [do we live in Germany?] and that’s what you get when you dumb down a nation, where ignorance is bliss and junk ‘comfort’ food fills the mental and alimentary abyss.

    How to illustrate my despair and to shun, spurn the Panem et Circenses.

    In a recent conversation with a senior council official someone who commands considerable authority but which is out of all proportion with her age [29-32?] diction, gravitas and indeed capabilities not least her erudition. The City of Canterbury was mentioned, she turned round to me, all blank staring eyed and asked, “what county is Canterbury in?” I had difficultly balancing on my seat for a moment of time. “Kent” I gasped.
    “Oh yes” she said,
    “somewhere down south.”
    I rolled my eyes, such glee I marvelled to myself………..’it’s somewhere down south’!! Though I speculated and thoroughly not reassured that the lady could give me chapter and verse on; equality statute, diversity and ‘elf’n’safety’ procedures in her own particular fiefdom.

    Sometime before, on a day time quiz show, a second year Med’ student, unable to translate ‘carpe diem’, and I found myself wishing hard that he was somewhat more profficient on medical nomenclature, where a ‘dead language’ lives strong.

    From Margate to Manchester and Liverpool, Leeds, Hull £millions spent on concrete warehouses exhibiting crass mundanity and abstract vapidity, random shapes and echoing specious reverence, spend some time in Margate and wonder at the monuments and art of the modern era and wonder if someone really is extracting the ‘michael’.

    When did newspapars and the TV media stop telling the truth or remind me when did the organs of the televisual media ever start? Advertising, soaps, murder mysteries all gone to political correctness and now done overtly before the watershed, you’ll have girls kissing girls, lads kissing blokes and it’s all taught in skool too. But hey if you’ve got Sky sports package – wall to wall premier league will make it all right and btw what’s your team this year, is it Arab bribery or just plain old Russian oligarchy?

    Feast your eyes and fill your gut, if you can’t afford it get down to the foodbank and make that wage go a little bit further on ‘recreation’a smorgasbord of proscribed drugs available at every street corner ‘down in town’ and cheap ‘three for one’ supermarket Chardonnay.

    Police? Where did they go to? Two aircraft carriers, no aircraft no support vessels either, an army of one division………honestly?

    Enjoy the diversity too, unless you want to avail yourself of gubmint services and the NHS will send you off to early bath, Valhalla before your time – neglectfully yours……..

    Still there’s always Game of Thrones, or see it on the streets of Paris, Nice, Berlin, London Bridge, Las Ramblas – live.

    Remember too that man made global warming is your “real enemy” so they tell it but open door immigration is the way out of it too.

    I talk to ‘kids’ – vox populi of all ages, the lights are on but there’s no one home, how did we ever become so vacuous, naive and easily pleased – a rhetorical question. innit? An education blob not fit for aught………….especially teaching. ALAS! Look at the explosion of kids needing to have tattooes and in effort to show difference – and irony: to which they all conform.

    Conformity, enforced homogeneity, pushing different shaped pegs all into the same SQUARE hole – that’s a recipe for a circus of rebellion bet your bread on it.

    You can only push people so far, we are at that threshold and who could gainsay that?

    A new way is coming, it’s exactly which one, that worries me.

    • therealguyfaux ✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

      It isn’t as though Canterbury is notable for some reason, or anything like that, right? (*major eyeroll*)

  • timbazo

    ‘ … we must move towards a system of voter-driven direct democracy where politicians will be forced to confront sensitive issues rather than suppress them.’ Easier said than done. There was a time when Labour and Conservatives both had 2-3 million members including Labour membership through the trade union levy. They needed to have so many members, because elections were won by people walking streets and campaigning for their party. Now elections are fought through the media with of course the inter-mediation of the political commentators. Between them, the politicians and the journalists, they decide what goes on the political agenda. Most notably they connived to keep EU membership off the agenda for several elections. The membership of parties can safely be ignored (except when they elect a leader at odds with the party establishment). I would recommend Peter Oborne’s brilliant ‘The Triumph of the Political Class’.

    Large parts of the population, social security recipients and the rich, will always vote largely for Labour and Conservative respectively out of personal interest. The results of elections will continue to be determined by floating voters. Andrew is correct to conclude that Labour cannot do without the Muslim vote. The challenge facing the Conservatives is to offer a vision inclusive of immigrants and their children based on shared values. This would be easier to do with Priti Patel as leader rather than Theresa May. The Tories had better get on with thinking about how to attract the vote of young adults. Time is not on their side: predominantly Tory voters will die before the next election and predominantly Labour voters will come on to the electoral register.

  • The fact that you (and we here in the States) have screwed up representational democracy almost beyond recognition, does not mean that direct democracy (what John Adams rightly called Mobocracy) is the answer. We saw that last weekend, in Charlottesville, and even more in Durham.

    There’s no question that the system has broken down, as it was bound to when the voters found they could vote themselves rich. Our founders warned us often and loudly about that. That we perverted what they built does not condemn what they built but what we did to it. If we are going to provide ‘cradle to grave’ care for ourselves, we will again become subjects of our rulers, becoming equal in misery.

    The solution is to remove the temptation to vote government largesse to anyone, be it the poor, unwed mothers, the sick, the rich, the corporations, anyone. The proper sphere of government is, as it always has been, “establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity”, nothing less, and especially nothing more.

    • therealguyfaux ✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

      One is reminded of what Churchill said to the effect of “Democracy being the worst form of government, except for all the others that have already been tried.”

      The conservatives in America are quite fond of the dictum that “Our nation is a republic, not a democracy”– the word “republic” has other connotations in Britain, but the concept, “Our nation governs itself by a representative governmental structure elected democratically” carries over. But as George Orwell noted in his essay Politics And The English Language, after detailing a list of buzzwords, “In the case of a word like ‘democracy,’ not only is there no agreed definition, but the attempt to make one is resisted from all sides. It is almost universally felt that when we call a country ‘democratic’ we are praising it: consequently the defenders of every kind of regime claim that it is a democracy, and fear that they might have to stop using that word if it were tied down to any one meaning. Words of this kind are often used in a consciously dishonest way….”

      I dispute none of what you are saying, and am merely noting that the whole discussion is fraught with bad intentions on the part of many, as we struggle to find just what IS actually meant by “democratically-elected representative government.” In any event it cannot mean “Fifty point oh oh one of the electorate can vote to restrict the rights of the other forty-nine point nine nine nine simply in virtue (“vice”?) of being the ‘majority’.” But the problem is that you need well more than 50.001% buy-in into the belief of “what cannot properly be considered ‘democracy’ ” that I just stated. And I am not sure whether such an overwhelming majority exists.

      • Nor do I dispute anything you say, actually I agree.

        I’m reminded that the Earl of Salisbury said to a workingmen s council, “As I have said, there are two points or two characteristics of the Radical programme which it is your special duty to resist. One concerns the freedom of individuals. After all, the great characteristic of this country is that it is a free country, and by a free country I mean a country where people are allowed, so long as they do not hurt their neighbours, to do as they like. I do not mean a country where six men may make five men do exactly as they like. That is not my notion of freedom.”

    • Greenlander

      Is sections of a particular community voting en bloc for the party of choice of their elders not a kind of mobocracy, as well as the criminality of electoral fraud that comes with postal voting?

      • Personally, I think anything other than voting on election day, at the polling place, in privacy (other than a good excuse, like military service, and documented) is prima facie voting fraud. But I’m a bit of a purist.

  • Devonian_Prof

    I go to Switzerland every year for work purposes, and it is a very healthy sign that there is always a series of popular initiatives on offer, both cantonal and federal. Governments regard them as a nuisance but are inured to them. A really bold proposal would be for the Tory party to propose their introduction here. It’d put the establishment on a rather uncomfortable spot as to how to oppose it.

    • John Thomas

      I often say: If I was young again, good with languages, and well-off, I’d try to get Swiss citizenship. Firstly, it’s not in the EU, never has been, and (as I understand it) is a place where there seems to be real law and order, a decent, ordered place, good health-care, education, etc. (am I wrong Prof?). And if it’s culture you want, Italy, France and Germany are on your doorstep

    • Royinsouthwest

      Would the “cantons” of Bradford and Tower Hamlets introduce sharia law after local referendums? (Or after referenda if you prefer that plural).

      • Devonian_Prof

        Cantons are limited in what they can do: anything contrary to Federal law (whose coverage is very extensive) would be struck down as unconstitutional.

  • The_Mocking_Turtle

    Where have all the supportive cheerleaderly articles about President Donald Trump disappeared to?

    • John Thomas

      Well, here’s one: Saint Obama was the very greatest president, or politician, or person, that ever was (or is it … no … got that wrong …the Worst president ever, I meant (unless you’re a BBC person, that is, in which case …yea, the first thing …))

      • The_Mocking_Turtle

        Thank you. :-)))

      • Tethys

        Why do you regard Obama as the worst ever president?

  • wiggiatlarge .

    “Fixated on their careers” totally and of course fixated on their party getting power at any cost as shown by the statement from Corbyn who would abandon “vulnerable girls” rather than say anything was wrong in a certain demographic, votes are more important than criminal acts..

    But he is not alone, all parties and leaders act this way now here and abroad, it is why Trump, whatever you think of him is incessantly attacked and riduculed by all, not because he has done anything wrong other than take away the establishments toys, they are ours they cry, you must never attack the status quo however incompetant or however they work in a fashion that has nothing to do with actually doing things the citizens put them in power to do.

    Politics has rapidly reduced to appalling levels of mendaciousness, PC and Common Purpose driven agendas to keep the public hoodwinked and ever more in check, the divine right to rule as shown by Hilary Clintons assertion that as a woman she should become President, no mention of what she could do for the country.

    We are in deep trouble when the previous PM could only claim after six years in power that his best achievement was getting gay marriage on the statute books with all that is going on we are in very deep trouble.

  • KilowattTyler

    The system certainly needs fixing but that will take time.

    In the meantime, it might be possible for ordinary people to exert some pressure by taking a leaf out of the ethnic minorities’ book and focus on synchronised voting, especially in seats with small majorities. We would need, essentially, a voters’ club in which the members of the club agree to vote to oust candidates who act against the interests of the club. Club members would ignore traditional party loyalties (which are becoming weaker and weaker anyway) and act to support each other. Membership of the club would be nationwide, spanning all constituencies.

    The Internet (perhaps an app) would be the tool to achieve this. Members of the club would agree, by discussion and then a vote online, on the policy for a particular issue. Come election time, club members in marginal seats would vote to oust MPs who by word or deed oppose the wishes of the club. At first, only very marginal seats would be affected. As club membership rose, not-so-marginal seats would start to succumb.

    One of the faults of the present system is that in certain circumstances a very small portion of the electorate can effectively decide the outcome of an election. If the two major parties have an almost equal number of seats, and some of those seats are held with small majorities, a few hundred strategic votes can result in a change of government, perhaps a radical change in the way Britain is governed (the last General Election was like this). A voters’ club could exert enormous influence on politicians’ careers in this sort of situation.

  • What puzzles me most is ‘Where is the anger?’ Children at a pop concert are blown apart, club-goers are gunned down in Paris and Orlando, police officers are murdered, young girls are abused en masse, holidaymakers are mown down on the streets of London, Nice and Barcelona and all we ever get to hear are politicians’ empty rhetoric and candle-toting Stepford clones appeasing the aggressors with platitudes and renditions of Imagine.

    If you tolerate this…

  • I note without surprise that this Tub Thumper’s rallying cry, and very poor article, has been awarded five stars by the readers of The Conservative Woman. The desired outcome has been demanded for a very long time yet we rarely if ever read any suggestion of how me might get to the promised land.

    How are we to get to the nirvana of perfect democracy?

    Thoughts on a postcard please.

  • MorganCourtenay

    The reason that politicians have turned to pandering is because they have no ideas. There are either few or no British politicians today who are visionaries. We have no Disraeli’s, no Churchill’s, no Thatchers. The result is a basin of mediocre talking-heads who believe in nothing and are ready to sell their soul to the highest bidder. This is not just a problem of the Left, but also the Right. Each wants to keep their own target demographics motivated for promises that will never be kept, because those promises are about as study as chaff blowing in the wind. We need a true visionary who loves his/her country and sees a clear path for us as a NATION of people, clearly defined by British law, culture and heritage. The vacuous concept of multiculturalism, where everyone is no one and everyone can be everyone, has clearly failed, as even people like Merkel and Miliband have acknowledged. Alas, unless someone from TCW runs as an MP, I remain as pessimistic as Peter Hitchens, who says that we should “emigrate before it’s too late”. As someone who loves this country, I am saddened.