Thursday, 29 October 2009

Breaking the monopoly of the professional politician - My idea for Power2010

Power2010's call for the public's idea for how we change politics has generated over 2000 ideas for widening democracy. They range from more traditional reformers' demands like fixed term parliaments and votes at 16, to the more unexpected and imaginative like a House of Lords made up of charitable representatives.

the OpenDemocracy blog .

A key part of this of course is having an open and intelligent debate on the kind of democracy we want - the very thing the political class is so keen to deny us. You can check out some of the different ideas on the Power2010 blog where a lively discussion is taking place. The deadline for submitting ideas is November 30th and before then I'm keen to sound out some fellow bloggers to hear their ideas and see if we can't provoke some good online debate and deliberation.’

So my ideas are:
1. End the whip. Even the name whip is a bit ridiculous, for most issues MPs should make up their own minds, otherwise you may as well only have 3 or so people in parliament.

2. Modern technology means MPs can follow debates and vote from anywhere, no need for them to be in the house on every occasion.

3. Lobbyists, vast corporations and the rich get more access to MPs than voters, redress the balance

4. Name and shame MPs who fail to communicate, my blog already reported on the lack of communication skills of MPs. It was based on a Hansard report using the latest figures (2007); on average they write 2 emails a week!

. 8% of MPs don't email
• 17% of MPs don't have a website
• 23% of MPs use social networking
• 11% of MPs blog

5. Many people live in Constituencies with a big majority, and they feel disenfranchised. Lets have proportional representation, where every vote counts.

Some others' ideas:
a chamber designed for 427 people is still being used for 646. It should be updated to seat all members. And let them have desks.

Jeering and heckling should be stopped in the chamber. It makes our politicians seem like children and is one of the things that turns members of the public off.

MPs should be able to address each other by name.

tagged by bracknellblog

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