People led democracy in Denmark: What can we learn from grown up politics?

I wrote a blog that might appeal to NatCAN members. Here is an excerpt or two:

"Folkemoedet is like all the UK party conferences, the green field at Glastonbury and the AGM of the Danish Women’s Institute happening at the same time.  Along with quite a bit of artisan beer and smoked mackerel.  Inspired by similar open politics conferences in Sweden, Folkemoedet could never happen here, today, in the fevered and messed up politics of the UK.

A week before Brexit, that subject was obviously on the agenda of a good many of the hundreds of workshops and debates attended by over 40,000 people per day.  But Denmark seems more at ease with its identity, retaining the Krone as its own currency, and avoiding the fake austerity we have in the UK.  Comfortable to know it doesn’t have to be the biggest or the best, but it can have a bloody good time being pretty good.  They looked on somewhat mystified by our referenda.  Why now? For what purpose? Won’t it end in tears?

Too right.  The tears of good people who have lived here years, abused in the street by racists."

You can read the full blog here:

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Comment by Jez Hall on July 15, 2016 at 13:45

Of course it isn't a parliament or a referendum and so not a methoid of gevernment. But i think it has a huge amount to do with democracy, or the culture of democracy that exists elsewhere. The UK is a political basketcase, where 'the plebs' as you call our citizens are disenfranchised and manipulated by political elites, and yes, our whole democratic system needs changing. The first part of that change is people believing they can challenge, in more positive ways than violence, spoiling their ballots, or joining extreme right wing or nationalistic parties that scare everyone shitless and thereby try to bully their views onto others. Its just a blog, not a manifesto for a new party or political movement, about a democratic culture that is more open, and of a society more mature in its outlook than our own.
And lets not forget of course that denmark does also have its right wing, that is turning its back on refugees. Its not perfect, just better...

Comment by Anna Harris on July 15, 2016 at 9:44
I read your blog, and it sounded like everyone had a good time, a festival atmosphere. Great for everyone to have a say. But what has it to do with democracy? It has no decision making powers by the sound of it. Nice that the politicians mix with the plebs, and certainly you express a more sane attitude to Denmark's world position than GB which still wants to play the bigshot. And they are by all accounts a much more egalitarian society than we are. Not such huge gaps between rich and poor, better welfare support and maternity leave, etc. That's what needs fixing. That's why this sort of event wouldnt happen here. It's the whole system that needs changing!
Comment by joe taylor on July 11, 2016 at 14:04

Great blog Jez.  Hope people read it and take note.

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