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Link: “If Australia was more democratic, would its economic policies be better?”

Original post found at: https://www.abc.net.au/news/2021-04-11/if-australia-was-more-democratic-would-its-economic-policies-imp/100060786

Was a bit nonplussed about the beginning of this article which holds up Ancient Athens as a model of democracy (it’s not like women or the large slave population got to participate in that, after all) but after that it gets better. It makes the point that:

Australia’s economic policy settings are controlled by a small group of elites drawn from politics and the bureaucracy and ‘independent’ bodies such as the Reserve Bank.

The priorities of this elite are completely out of step with the interests of the majority; as the article points out, they have presided quite deliberately over a steep rise in wealth inequality and feel no shame about the existence of poverty, which they could eliminate overnight if they wanted to.

It goes on to ask, But what if Australians had the opportunity to vote on individual policies, like the Athenians? How would we, the majority, structure our economy? I mean, this is the power that real socialism aims to put in our hands. But even without acknowledging that, I feel like this article does a good job pointing out that if power was actually in the hands of the masses, we could make our lives so much better. And the fact that they’re not demonstrates, as this article does acknowledge, that Australia is not very democratic after all. Which is a rare thing to see admitted in a mainstream outlet like the ABC!

photo of Jessica Smith is a left-wing feminist who loves animals, books, gaming, and cooking; she’s also very interested in linguistics, history, technology and society.