From email@example.com Fri Nov 10 10:16:43 2000
Date: Thu, 9 Nov 2000 22:59:51 -0600 (CST)
Marpessa Kupendua <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Subject: !*Qaddafi's Response to
Democracy; Interesting Reading on Election Day.
From: kiilu <email@example.com>
From: Li'l Joe <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Tuesday, November 07, 2000 12:48 PM
Subject: [BLACK-LEFT] Al Qaddafi's Response to
Reading on Election Day.
Parliaments are the backbone of that conventional democracy prevailing in the world today. Parliament is a misrepresentation of the people, and parliamentary systems are a false solution to the problem of democracy. A parliament is originally founded to represent the people, but this in itself is undemocratic as democracy means the authority of the people and not an authority acting on their behalf. The mere existence of a parliament means the absence of the people. True democracy exists only through the direct participation of the people, and not through the activity of their representatives. Parliaments have been a legal barrier between the people and the exercise of authority, excluding the masses from meaningful politics and monopolizing sovereignty in their place. People are left with only a facade of democracy, manifested in long queues to cast their election ballots.
To lay bare the character of parliaments, one has to examine their origin. They are either elected from constituencies, a party, or a coalition of parties, or are appointed. But all of these procedures are undemocratic, for dividing the population into constituencies means that one member of parliament represents thousands, hundreds of thousands, or millions of people, depending on the size of the population. It also means that a member keeps few popular organizational links with the electors since he, like other members, is considered a representative of the whole people. This is what the prevailing traditional democracy requires. The masses are completely isolated from the representative and he, in turn, is totally removed from them. Immediately after winning the electors' votes the representative takes over the people's sovereignty and acts on their behalf. The prevailing traditional democracy endows the member of parliament with a sacredness and immunity which are denied to the rest of the people. Parliaments, therefore, have become a means of plundering and usurping the authority of the people. It has thus become the right of the people to struggle, through popular revolution, to destroy such instruments - the so-called parliamentary assemblies which usurp democracy and sovereignty, and which stifle the will of the people. The masses have the right to proclaim reverberantly the new principle: no representation in lieu of the people.
If parliament is formed from one party as a result of its winning an election, it becomes a parliament of the winning party and not of the people. It represents the party and not the people, and the executive power of the parliament becomes that of the victorious party and not of the people. The same is true of the parliament of proportional representation in which each party holds a number of seats proportional to their success in the popular vote. The members of the parliament represent their respective parties and not the people, and the power established by such a coalition is the power of the combined parties and not that of the people. Under such systems, the people are the victims whose votes are vied for by exploitative competing factions who dupe the people into political circuses that are outwardly noisy and frantic, but inwardly powerless and irrelevant. Alternatively, the people are seduced into standing in long, apathetic, silent queues to cast their ballots in the same way that they throw waste paper into dustbins. This is the traditional democracy prevalent in the whole world, whether it is represented by a one-party, two-party, multiparty or non-party system. Thus it is clear that representation is a fraud.
Moreover, since the system of elected parliaments is based on propaganda to win votes, it is a demagogic system in the real sense of the word. Votes can be bought and falsified. Poor people are unable to compete in the election campaigns, and the result is that only the rich get elected.
Philosophers, thinkers, and writers advocated the theory of representative parliaments at a time when peoples were unconsciously herded like sheep by kings, sultans and conquerors. The ultimate aspiration of the people of those times was to have someone to represent them before such rulers. When even this aspiration was rejected, people waged bitter and protracted struggle to attain this goal.
After the successful establishment of the age of the republics and the beginning of the era of the masses, it is unthinkable that democracy should mean the electing of only a few representatives to act on behalf of great masses. This is an obsolete structure. Authority must be in the hands of all of the people.
The most tyrannical dictatorships the world has known have existed under the aegis of parliaments.