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Post-democracy, CCrouch (2004) (pp. 3-4)

June 6, 2013

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“Satisfaction with the unambitious democratic expectations of liberal democracy produces complacency about the rise of what I call post-democracy. Under this model, while elections certainly exist and can change governments, public electoral debate is a tightly controlled spectacle, managed by rival teams of professionals expert in the techniques of persuasion, and considering a small range of issues selected by those teams. The mass of citizens plays a passive, quiescent, even apathetic part, responding only to the signals given them. Behind this spectacle of the electoral game, politics is really shaped in private by interaction between elected governments and elites that overwhelmingly represent business interests. This model, like the maximal ideal, is also an exaggeration, but enough elements of it are recognizable in contemporary politics to make it worth while asking where our political life stands on a scale running between it and the maximal democratic model; and in particular to appraise in which direction it seems to be moving between them. It is my contention that we are increasingly moving towards the post-democratic pole.”

[op. cit., pp. 3-4]

Manuel J. Matos‘s insight:

In a sense, this is a cynical view of contemporary politics. But certainly forces one to think about what it means to be a citizen today.

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