Is there a point to politicians?

The Week in Politics
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Chris Dillow argues

Politicians are becoming meaningless people doing meaningless posturing.

in the light of their inability to fix the problems of the Eurozone, or to reverse declining turnout at elections. Hopi Sen, in an unrelated post, points out that people’s interest in politics has remained relatively stable, but their propensity to vote, and their belief that voting is a duty, have declined.

I suspect that the truth is less that politicians are unimportant, but that politics as it is currently practiced is inadequate to deal with society as it is now, where people are individualistic and want personalised politics, and where markets exercise control over areas that don’t match traditional national boundaries (because the politicians have allowed national boundaries to become porous to businesses).

With more flexible understanding of power (such as a stronger European politics), and politics better suited to the network society, we could have powerful politicians – or alternatively we could reverse globalisation and restore markets to the national boundaries that parallel existing political spaces.

However, if we are to keep boundaries and attitudes open, none of the old methods, and few of the people whom the old political selection process has thrown up – are meeting our needs.

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Published by Anthony Zacharzewski

Anthony Zacharzewski was one of the founders of Demsoc in 2006. Before starting work for Demsoc in 2010, he was a Whitehall civil servant and a local government officer.