Natacha Polony: "The good use of democracy"

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CHRONICLE - This political sequence marks the victory of risk-free renewal, the eviction of political elites to better preserve economic elites. Nothing to do with a democratic awakening of the whole nation.

This is the principle of reasoning by the absurd: to decline the logical consequences of a proposition to demonstrate its aberrant character and thus to invalidate it. For example, a first past the post in times of mistrust of the people towards institutions and parties, which would result in 15% of the registered voters having more than 75% of the seats in the National Assembly. Absurd, indeed. Yet it is the face of our democracy. One question is obvious: what we call democracy would not have become the nice cladding of a form of despotism more or less agreed? Admittedly, we are reminded every morning by the media anxious to show us the right path that we have the infinite chance not to live in dictatorship and that we must therefore applaud the system that guarantees our rights and freedoms so well. fundamentals.

"We know since Tocqueville that institutions, however balanced they may be, can not define a democratic system by themselves. Democracy is a practice »

Give us the thrill of a few minutes off the marked paths of the obligatory communion. Democracy would therefore be a matter of institutions, and ours would play their role good-year: to express the will of the people. Who can listen without laughing Benjamin Griveaux, spokesman for En marche! explain that there is no problem and that democracy consists in worrying only about the votes cast (or the LR and PS survivors scandalizing themselves of a system they defended when he kept them in power despite an electoral base more and more restricted)? Institutions are only a tool, the architecture that makes it possible to translate into a fundamental law that takes into account the history and political culture of each people, its aspirations and choices. Those of the Fifth Republic have visibly reached their limits.

But we know since Tocqueville that institutions, however balanced they may be, can not alone define a democratic regime. Democracy is a practice. To elect the prince every five years to get back to sleep once he is acquired, magazine covers in support, that he walks on the water, has little to do with it. This is the paradox of this political moment. The promise of the young prodigy was a democratic renewal by the liberation of individual energies. A form of Tocquevillian liberalism that claimed to break with the weight of the administrative sphere to give men freedom in "small business", the only vaccine against despotism. Thus we saw these "walkers" exalted regain the desire to participate in public affairs and candidates to renew sclerotic elites. Upsetting.

Jupiterian hurricane

Alas, the beautiful democratic impetus has only nourished the jupiterian hurricane. Why? Because democracy is above all a social state. And because this political sequence marked the victory of risk-free renewal, the eviction of political elites to better preserve the economic elites. Nothing to do with a democratic awakening of the whole nation.

"The share of citizens that their social status protects from the ravages of free trade will allow many drop-outs to preserve its tranquility"

In a society based on the well-being and indefinite extension of the field of consumption, the greatest fear is to lose what little we have. Citizens' share of their social status protects against the ravages of free trade (deindustrialization, destruction of traditional structures ...) will allow many abandonments to preserve its tranquility. Especially if, through this choice, the media mirror sends back to him the image of modernity and resistance to populism.

A truly democratic society has nothing to do with it. It rests on balanced institutions, in which the legislature would not be subordinated to the executive, on the articulation between the expression of the people and the weight of the intermediary bodies. It rests mainly on the reconquest by individuals of their autonomy, the possibility of controlling their lives without depending on an imposed system or an external power. It is based on the idea that any surrender of individual and collective sovereignty must be granted. In this sense, a society where peasants depend on four multinationals for seed is not democratic. A society where the attention of individuals becomes a wealth sold by Internet providers for advertising space is not democratic. A society in which 25% of 10-year-olds do not master basic knowledge is not democratic. A society where citizens have given up hope of controlling their collective destiny and changing an economic system that they deem unjust, to the point of ceasing to vote, is not democratic.

It is not only an institutional reform that will overthrow the soft despotism, it is an economic and cultural revolution starting, not from the Jupiterian spheres, but from the base, that is to say from each one of us.

Source: © The Figaro Premium - Natacha Polony: "The good use of democracy"

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One Response to "Natacha Polony: «Du bon usage de la démocratie»"

  1. jean dufour   18 June 2017 at 22 h 49 min

    Who owns the media has the power; Illiteracy maintained does the rest.
    The web remains a platform for the protesters, he must expect a purge.
    Sleep good people we take care of everything.

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