Articles sur Democracy

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The most serious risks to electoral integrity usually arise from disparities in political finance and media coverage during a campaign. AAP/Dan Peled

How do we know when elections succeed – or fail?

Many recent elections have ended with bitter disputes about electoral integrity. The issue is perhaps best exemplified by partisan divisions in the United States over Republican allegations of voter fraud…
AAP/Nikki Short

Can democracy cope?

Even by recent standards, the last few weeks have seen new levels of dysfunction, volatility and even chaos within federal and state governments. As the voters of Queensland demonstrated, there is little…
Future technology won’t just be a gadget we use, it will re-structure our societies. Sergey Nivens/Shutterstock

Tomorrow’s technology will lead to sweeping changes in society – it must, for all our sakes

Throughout history, whenever new technologies have emerged that change our means of production and ability to communicate they have tended to transform society. The rapid technological development of the…
This house has seen some corkers over the years. davidesimonetti/Flickr

Britain’s seven greatest general elections since 1945

General elections are the great democratic leveller. Every citizen – however wealthy, educated or interested – gets an opportunity to pass judgement on the performance of the government and the direction…
Young people are dissatisfied and disengaged, but they’re not the only ones. Dominic Harris/PA Wire/Press Association Images

After Greece, the UK is next in line for an electoral shake-up

We are becoming very familiar with repeated warnings that citizens in Britain are increasingly disillusioned with democratic politics, rejecting the institutions of national government, and leaving British…
Australia has had a consistently high voter turnout thanks to compulsory voting. Niyazz/Shutterstock

Compulsory voting, much like democracy, beats the alternatives

Queenslanders will soon head to the voting booths to either oust or re-elect the Newman government and no doubt some will be wondering why. “Why must I vote or be fined? Why must I be forced to choose…
It’s got truth serum in it? PA

Hoax calls to the PM are the price we pay for democracy

The ease with which a hoaxer was recently able to call the prime minister’s mobile phone, pretending to be the head of GCHQ, highlights a major dilemma for democratic political leaders. Cameron said he…
Ousted prime minister Yingluck Shinawatra’s impeachment is but the latest act in Thailand’s political tragedy. EPA/Narong Sangnak

Yingluck impeachment is an execution of Thai democracy

No-one should be surprised that Thailand’s former prime minister, Yingluck Shinawatra, has been impeached by the military-appointed National Legislative Assembly. This was one more act in a political tragedy…
Corruption-buster Tony Fitzgerald is urging Queenslanders to lodge a protest vote against the major parties if they want to see real political reform. AAP/Dan Peled

Four ways to vote for a better democracy in Queensland

Tony Fitzgerald had a point when he recently urged Queenslanders not to vote for either of the major parties in the January 31 state election. The 73-year-old, who headed Queensland’s landmark corruption…
Time to take a chance on the European model? De rödgröna/Wikimedia Commons

UKIP is Britain’s most European party – no, really

Don’t tell them this, but UKIP are the most European party out there. Britain’s democracy is increasingly diverse and complex, and with the growth of UKIP on the right and the Greens on the left its political…
Westminster: a cradle of democracy? Tim Ireland/PA Wire

Why the UK has little to celebrate on Democracy Day

The BBC is marking 750 years since the first elected parliament at Westminster with a dedicated “Democracy Day”. Though Westminster is recognised as the cradle of representative democracy, there are indications…
Louise Mensch was one of the first single-termers to leave our current parliament. Stefan Wermuth/PA Archive

The arrival (and departure) of the parliamentary single-termers

All university admissions tutors know about single-termers. They are those students – some badly advised and intellectually bewildered, others more devious – who decide around mid-November that they want…
William III’s ascent to the throne spurred the genesis of human rights. Wikimedia Commons

Calls for a new UK bill of rights forget the trailblazing original

David Cameron is riding into the 2015 election campaign with a promise to finally fulfil one of the Conservatives’ 2010 manifesto commitments: to repeal the 1998 Human Rights Act, restore the sovereignty…
Tony Abbott promised a government of no surprises and no excuses. 2014 delivered anything but. AAP/Lukas Coch

2014, the year that was: Politics + Society

In 1996, John Howard offered this aspiration for Australians: I would like to see them comfortable and relaxed about their history; I would like to see them comfortable and relaxed about the present and…
What do you say Dave — five more years? Stefan Rousseau/PA Wir

Should the UK call time on fixed-term elections?

The UK is having what might be called a constitutional moment. In the wake of the Scottish referendum and after nearly five years of coalition government, the fundamental rules of the political game are…
Amid clouds of teargas, the Hong Kong ‘Umbrella Man’ defies police attempts to end the protest. Wikimedia Commons/Pasu Au Yeung

Umbrella Man: a unique threat to China or symbol of wider change?

The haunting image of a masked protester defiantly hoisting two black umbrellas amid a cloud of tear gas flickered across global social media platforms in the seconds and minutes after the Umbrella uprising…
Leading Australian media organisations launched a ‘Right to Know’ campaign in 2007, citing the erosion of free speech by more than 500 laws and regulations. It’s been downhill since then. AAP/Tracey Nearmy

Suppression, security, surveillance and spin: the rise of a secret state?

I am reluctant to give more ammunition to Pacific leaders who regard Australia as some kind of exemplar in media freedom – in this case a bad example. On the other hand, truths have to be told: in Australia…

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