Friday, January 10, 2014

Democracy Upgrade : moving on from democratic dictatorship

Reblogged from
An amazing speech/essay by my hero, Birgitta Jonsdottir, Icelandic activist and member of Parliament:

The marrow from my speech at FutureEverything 2012 - a big thank you to Jodi Rose for making this beautiful PreziTation for me to use as a frame for the keynote.

What is democracy?
Who is the system to serve?
What is a parliamentary representative?
Who does he pledge alliance to?
Who writes our laws?
What are the cornerstones of Democracy?
What is the purpose of a constitution?

I want you to think about these questions and find out what their content means to you.

I am an activist in parliament. The longer I serve, the more I think about the meaning of the questions I have just posed. The more I understand how the system works, the more obvious it is to me that there is a serious system error. The system is like the hard drive on computers you would have to defrag in order for them to work, the bigger the files the less efficient the computer would work. The problem with our systems is that they are too big, too alienated from the people they are supposed to serve. It is too difficult for the public to be able to influence and have impact on the (re) in the rePublic. Sometimes when the computer is too fragmented the best solution is to zero it in order for it to work, sometimes a complete system upgrade is the only way out. We have reached the point in our democracies that we need to zero the system and install a new system. We need to move away from the big complex to the small fast system, where each and every person has to understand that we are the stuff that makes the system. We are the system. We are the government. We are society. We are the power. We are the law. It is not beyond us, unreachable nor undesirable to be it, the system is a reflection of who we are.

In order to empower people to act on this awareness and to start to apply changes through our only means: through action, we need to have direct democracy with the liquid add-on. We need to craft our constitution for and by the people. (Constitution is the agreement of a nation on what sort of society they choose to be). Law is currently crafted by and for the 1% - we need to simplify our laws and make sure we agree on the spirit of the law, rather then adding on their complexity with endless patchwork.

The cornerstones of society are freedom of information, expression and speech. The Internet is the last free world, that has enabled us to connect, share, be informed, act and resample our creativity. The internet is now under serious attack, as the corporations and governments are trying to place their reins of power on it, in order to industrialize it and to have absolute control over how we connect, share, be informed, act and resample our creativity.

I am a hacker in parliament, I went into the system in order to understand how it works and my conclusion is clear: Install new system with a new form of democracy of the future, where we move away from democratic dictatorship with many representative heads to a direct responsibility of direct liquid democracy. Are you ready to be the co-creator of your society? Do you understand the importance of your participation? We are running out of planet, so for the future of everything it is time to wake up and start co-creating.

(note: by 'zero' I deduce she means 'format')

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