War gaims politiks sensor nolej thru fry enquiry.

Elektoral reform as a kais study of war gaims politis.

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( Kapital-i, in 'I, myself', now spels Il as in isle or aisle.
Leter y spels sym for seem or seam and partys for parties.
Leter w spels swn for soon. )

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War gaims politiks

I'v previusly diskus'd fraud or foul play in the gaim of party politiks ( on the paj, Foul! Refery elektoral system abyus ). That was to show how the gaim nyded referying, and the best way to do it.

This and the suksyding web paj, WI do we never lern any-thing from history? ( naim'd after an esay by a military historian ) ar also about elektoral fraud. I apolojis for som duplikation of material. But, hyr, the emfasis is not on a spesifik remedy. Rather, I trI to explain sharp praktis, of politiks in jeneral, and elektions in partikular, as a war gaims mentality. This konsists of fors and fraud. When fors is inhibited, if only bekaus it thretens human survival, the war mentality may persist, in politiks, as fraud.

War is a kontinuation of politiks by other myns, said Clausewitz. The idea of war gaims politiks is that: Politiks remains a kontinuation of war by ritual myns. Lord Salisbury observ'd that the nIntynth sentury British parliment had kom to run its afairs lIk 'a bludles sivil war'. Thus began our era of rejimenting MPs into organis'd partys, playing the numbers gaim of viktory by majoritys.

Salisbury promoted wat he presumably deplor'd, bekaus he belyv'd that the Konservativ party shud rul in the interests of its klas. In such sirkumstanses, wat chois did Labor hav but to enter parliment as a klas party? Rejimented in the work plas, rejimented in oposition to the work-plas owners, by traid unions, and finaly rejimented in parliment, not to be traitors to ther klas, that was the Labor party's klas war retorik. 'Traitors snyr' even in the words of ther old anthem, 'The Red Flag,' as if they wer a litl nation to themselvs. And, over the yers, such 'traitors' ther hav byn in plenty from this sudo-nation of a party.

Bernard Shaw said, in 'Everybody's Political What's What,' that a majority was given viktory, bekaus in a batl the majority usualy won. In other words, wining a majority was the ritualis'd version, that tw sides to a quarel kud aksept, of wining a batl, but without al that kostly bludshed.

In the British parliment, this war mentality is stil uper-most in politicians' minds. The party in government with an absolut majority of syts is in the position of a konqueror over the oposition. As John Locke said, an absolut government is at war with its own pepl. Lord Hailsham's 'elektiv diktatorship' is akin to the ancient Greek tyrany. The tyrant was popularly elekted but given a fry hand to rul as he lIk'd, wens no dout the odium of the word 'tyrant' koms from.

It is a salutory reminder of the limitations of simpl majority rul. John Stuart Mill has byn ignor'd in teling the hom truth that rul by the majority is maiorokrasy wich kan be a diktatorship of the majority. He favor'd proportional representation, proper, as a progresion to komplyt demokrasy.

Any amendment, to government lejislation, is karakteris'd not as wat most MPs think is a chanj for the beter, but as a 'defyt' to the government. Such is the simpl-mindednes of simpl majority rul. Uon wud think the government was som aijing warior chyftain, hw has to konstantly asert himself, lest the trIb suspekt he is lwsing his grip. Every sujestion of a beter way to do things is tryted as a chalenj, to his authority, that must be byten off.

Befor the tIm of John Harrison's kronometer, a komon sailor, in the Royal Navy, expres'd his wory the ship was heding for the roks. He was hung for mutiny and the ship founder'd with the los of al hands. ( The kaptain surviv'd but was murder'd, on shor, for his ring. )

This is only an extrym exampl of how the asertion of uon's ego kan bekom mor important than noing how things ryly stand. Languaj houpfuly exchanjes yusful information but kan dejenerat into a war of words, in wich uon's self estym and status ar at staik. The result is a kind of pepl hw lern nothing bekaus they think they hav nothing to lern. To belyv uon is always rIt is to be dogmatik or doktrinair. Insted of fiting uon's viws to reality, uon's perseption of reality is tailor'd to fit the belyfs.

Sertain Pasifik islanders simply kud not sy Kaptain Cook's ship, bekaus they didnt belyv such a larj vesel kud exist. Aldous Huxley mentions reserch that show'd how pepl konventionalis or over-simplify information that they hav red, so that it has a minimal impakt on ther set of mind. It is ysier to be mentaly lazy by alowing habits of mind to persist against the evidens. It taks a ryl efort and plenty of praktis to think, as in any other aktivity uon has to master.

Som yers ago, a lokal paper was run by a lokal family hw tolerated komplyt frydom of opinion, even if the editor didnt lIk wat yu said. This litl oasis of frydom was bot by a rejonal grup, hw strip'd down the non-komercial kontent, and kal'd it 'yor paper'.

I rylIs'd this and kept my leter short. But it was stil edited, mor-over, as to defyt its purpos. My usual atempt, to get the mesaj thru, that the singl transferabl vot is the demokratik method of proportional representation, was chanj'd. Insted, my leter red as if I belyv'd in any method of PR.

In the stryt, a lokal Liberal brIten'd at me, no dout belyving I had kom round to the national elektoral reform kampain's suport for al PR methods, later kal'd 'fair vots'.
The editor didnt apolojis or korekt his mis-representation of my leter. He just said I kud rIt an other leter.

MynwIl, I rowt to a lokal 'fryby', a paper erning soly by advertising. This leter, also, had to be very bryf. ( I rekon'd it wud get in, as we had just plas'd an advert ther. ) The fryby editor didnt re-rIt my skrap of a leter. But he kaption'd it: PR is undemokratik. He was on the other sId of the British politikal divid that either said al PR is gud or al PR is bad.

Tw kreativ editors mayd a self-kontradiktory non-sens of my point of viw. Thus, was sabotaj'd my disent, even on a humbl lokal level, from the tw partial sIds of British elektoral politiks. Ther tw rongs wud kombin to mak an other rong, in hybrid aditional member systems. Thys wer a rekonsiliation betwyn tw bad systems of singl members and party lists. By 2000, main-land Britain had implemented nothing but varius undemokratik voting methods. An undemokratik debait was nown by its fruits.

Sins then, I hav kom akros the saim uon-sidednes on the internet. The moderator of an e-mail grup for 'fair vots' ban'd diskusion of voting methods. He wud not permit the question wether al proportional methods wer worth suporting. The list owners sym'd hapy enuf for disenters to go els-wer and even pointedly posted an 'unsubscribe' notis. Geting rid of disenters, to the pan-PR prejudis, wud mak it an unquestion'd dogma in ther grup, wich, symingly, is wat they wanted.

Uons a bias is put into a diskusion, it is lIk tampering with the evidens. The desisions of that grup hav not byn fryly ariv'd at, but hav had to operat under a prejudis, so ther konklusions ar suspekt as being partial to that prejudis or presumption, such as, that al PR systems ar gud and to be suported.

A resercher may do much gud work. But uons his pre-konseptions sensor advers results, the houl of that work is put in dout. Okasionaly, a sientist is suspekted of fraudulently altering his data to prov his belyfs. His kolygs dont no wich of his labors ar jenuin, and so may not trust any of it.

The doktrinair mind may supres inkonvenient evidens that does not fit into its nyt dogma ( that is never the les rong ). That may involv supresing diskusion by others. The doktrinair turns diktator, hw is at war with konflikting points of viw.

An Amerikan kongres-man said that in tIm of war, the first kasualty is truth. Not only fors desIds a war but fraud. The fakt that ther is a war at al sujests the forses may be evenly enuf match'd for both sIds to hav houps of wining, wen al faktors ar taken into konsideration. Admitedly, this is not always the kais. But often enuf, fraud, rather than fors, may be the desisiv faktor in viktory. In jeneral, fraud is of komparabl military importans to fors.

The German filosofy of Realpolitik ment that the imperialists belyv'd the realitys of politiks to be fors and fraud. This belyf is implisit in Clausewitz's saying, quoted abov. Bismarck was its formost praktitioner. By sending the Prussian army to disband the Frankfort parliment, he was yusing fors to kreat the konditions for fraud. Deseption is mayd difikult by a parliment kondukting fry and open debait.

( Even the partys' wiping system has not quIt obskur'd this funktion of the parliment of a fry pepl, tho it has rejimented supos'd representativs into konforming to ther oficial lIns. This is the fraudulent supresion of disenting opinions that dont fit in with party doktrins and may expos its falshuds. )

Open diplomasy wud hav prevented Bismarck's deseptions against the French and the first of a serys of Franko-German wars in 1870, that wer to be such a katastrofik fytur of the twentieth sentury. Mor-over, Bismarck's deseptions wer only direkted to baptising in 'blud and iron', by 1870, a German unity, hws pysful achyvment he destroy'd in 1848.

It was not national unity that mater'd so much to Bismarck as the militarist method of fors and fraud. The legasy of domination or diktatorship was to kontinu to triumf over demokrasy in much of Europ for much of the twentieth sentury. An atitud of fors and fraud apyr to be motivated by hatred and fyr, an emotional imbalans that syks to spred its instability to others. It is ysier for the unstabl to dyl with others on ther own terms than to lern self-kontrol.

Of kors, uon's agresions kan not just be wish'd away. They hav to be re-chanel'd in harmles direktions. The Olympik gaims, from the ancient Greeks, wer just uon konsius plan for doing this. In politiks, a konstitution or set of ruls, that requir a ritual adherens, ar an important step in a kuntry's self-kontrol. The front benches of the Hous of Komons ar plas'd at drawn swords' lenth from ych other.

Britain's elaborat seremonys on the opening of parliment ritualis historik konflikt. Slaming the Komons dor on the royal mesenjer, Blak Rod, komemorats the stresful sivil war period of parliment with the king. Ritual kan get out of hand, how-ever, especialy with the Ghormenghastly British. Until 1967, Blak Rod interupted debaits every tIm a Bil resyv'd the royal asent.

War itself was kondukted with ruls. In the first plas, war was deklar'd. This was the jentlmanly thing to do. It is the onest admision, to an enemy, that from now on onesty syses. British prIm minister Neville Chamberlain deklar'd war in 1939 against Jermany. Ther has byn no sesation of wars in the world but uon dosnt sym to hyr the deklarations. Surpris is tu valuabl in faster-moving mor dedly tIms.

Only a rul of humanity and not ruls of war kan inhibit the yus of modern wepons of mas destruktion. The futility of war is shown by lyders, hw ar redus'd to syking komfort from kounting the number of enemy kil'd in aktion, as in the trenches of world war uon, or the 'body kounts' by the Amerikans in ther Vietnam war. Thys ar 'nekrokratik' kounts insted of demokratik kounts.

Ruls of wering uniforms persist, at lyst in regular armys. Kombatants without uniforms ar liabl to be shot as spIs. It is absolutly forbiden to no the enemy's disposition and intentions. Tho, fals information is konstantly fed the enemy to throw them off-gard.

Konsequently, we kan admit, that given an adversarial mentality, Clausewitz is rIt about war and politiks. If realpolitik is the politiks rylistik to a belyver in fors and fraud as the prIm movers of government, then war is myrly at uon end of a skail in wich extrym fors is yus'd. Politiks wud be the yus of fraud or deseption, at the other end of this skail of mesurs by wich uon's wishes wer won at other pepl's expens.

Abrod, sekret diplomasy was the myns by wich nations houp'd to out-manuver uon an other. At hom, it was konsider'd danjerusly radikal to giv the lower klases edukation. H G Wells said Britain's 1870 edukation akt was for the suplI of faktory workers.

War, as the yus of fors, has had to be kept in som chek or ther wud hav byn fw or no-uon left to fIt. But that dos not nesesarily end the war mentality. War may kontinu as fraud. The plunder and polution of the planet has byn deskrib'd as a third world war on natur. It defrauds most of this and futur jenerations of natural welth. ( Mor demokrasy thru Konstitutional Ekonomiks is a myns to cheking this. )

An information war kan defraud the publik from noing its rIts. Sensorship of elektoral nolej about demokratik method is a ky faktor in the power strugl kondukted by politicians, akademiks, reformers and the media. A strugl, for and against elektoral reform, twk-off in Britain in the last quarter of the twentieth sentury ( spreding to other kuntrys, mainly English-spyking ). A remarkabl fakt about the kampain is how both sIds sot to sensor debait on voting methods.

Adversary politiks and elektoral reform.

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In 1975, a kolektion of esays, kal'd 'Adversary Politics And Electoral Reform,' was edited by Prof. S E Finer, hw also provided the tItl esay. His opening sentens sums it up:

Briefly, the adversary system is a stand-up fight between two adversaries for the favours of the lookers-on.

Finer gos on to say tw partys go about ther respektiv government and oposition bisnes lIk the defens and prosekution in a komon law trial, houping to win the majority suport of a jury that is the British elektorat.

Ther kontention is sharpen'd by the staiks, wich ar winer taks al. The party with most syts monopolises the government and al its powers of patronaj. At lyst until the Frydom of information lejislation, pas'd -- not befor douts it was jenuin -- by Blair's Labor administration, government also monopolis'd the huj data-gathering resorses of the sivil servis, with the Oficial Sekrets Akt.

By the final quarter of the twentieth sentury, the USA was a world lyder, as was Sweden, with ther Frydom of information Akts. Ever sins then, other demokrasys hav byn folowing suit, and Britain beter leit than never.

1975 was the yer wen Britain's national kampain for elektoral reform was founded. It later kal'd itself 'Fair Votes' ( a tItl aparently taken over by elektoral reformers starting kampains in North Amerika ). This was an al-party movment that folow'd Finer's thesis.

The reformers kritisis'd the tw-party fIt, in wich uon party nok'd the other down, at a jeneral elektion, and then walk'd al over it, only to be tryted in the saim fashon, if it lost the next elektoral bout. Britain was not so much govern'd as unsetl'd by kounter-akting invasions from the left and rIt of politiks.

Fair Vots kampains hav usualy held that governments shud hav a majority of the voters behind them. If uon party kan not achyv that, they advokat ko-alitions. This nesesitated proportional elektions, so that smal partys wud win ther fair sher of syts, and tak ther rItful plas in government, if no uon party had a working majority in parliment.

This syms harmles enuf. The devil is in the details. And, from, the start, yor Fair Vots kampains kud not abId the details.

In Britain, from the mid 1970s, uon kept hyring on television the freis 'som form of proportional representation'. The publik wer not instrukted they wer myrly indoktrinated by this parot kal. The 'fair vots' loby was making klyr that was al that mater'd to them.

Leiter, they kud drop the rubrik 'som form of', wen it was understud that proportional representation ment wat they wanted it to myn: any voting system that gav smal partys a sher of syts for vots. This re-infors'd the popular falasy that proportional representation myrly myns proportional partisanship. The lojikal falasy is in the fakt that the former implIs the later but the later dos not implI the former.

The fair representation of smal partys is only uon konsequens of demokrasy, not a substitut for it. Any voting system, aksepted alon for fairnes to smal partys, dos not nesesarily provid demokrasy.

So, ther yu hav it, for over a quarter of a sentury, a relentles ( and now international ) kampain for 'fair vots' bais'd on a non sequitur. This ilojikality shows thys kampainers havnt even lern'd wat the ancient Chinese say is the begining of wisdom: to kal things by ther proper naims.

The dogma of 'fair vots' for smal partys' syts.

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A 'fair vots' movment, that inkluded members of al partys, and spok against the adversarial politiks of the tw-party system, shud itself be non-adversarial. Uon mIt think that a movment that embras'd suporters of al kinds of proportional elektions was being liberal and tolerant.

Unfortunatly, al kinds of proportional elektions, themselvs, ar not liberal and tolerant of voters' choises. To tryt them, as if they wer, is fals and against the publik interest and rIt to no. Mor-over, uon didnt hav to be a profet to ges that wen the defenders of the existing inequitabl system had to mak konsesions, the publik interest wud stil not be formost in ther minds.

By 2000, many of thos konsesions had byn mayd in Britain. And they indyd achyv'd som sher of syts for vots to smal partys. In Scottish and Welsh parliment elektions, in London lokal elektions, party lists of aditional members, or strait party lists in the kais of European elektions, al achyv'd som so-kal'd 'fairnes' to smal partys, and al with a total disregard for the voters' frydom of individual chois of kandidats, as if representativ demokrasy had to shrink to mak rwm for party ideolojys, or was a komplytly out-moded konsept in Europ.

Elektoral reform, for fairnes betwyn the partys, betray'd the voters' frydom of individual chois. It was simply not an isyu for most influential reformers and they didnt want to no about it. It syms stranj that a movment that kers so much about fairnes shud ker nothing at al about frydom of the individual. Perhaps, the anser is that the al-party movment was not so much about fairnes, either, much les about demokrasy.

It is ysy to spot the orijin of the British elektoral movment, that has sins spred to other English-spyking kuntrys with a gryvans against the winer-taks-al system of simpl majority elektions. In tw 1974 jeneral elektions, the Liberals won 19 - 18 per sent of the vots and les than tw and a haf per sent of the syts.

We kan admit som sens of injustis hyr, among other than Liberals. But the 1976 proposals of the Hansard Sosiety on elektoral reform, the Blake report, show the sevyr limitations of that moral sens. The aditional member system, they advokated, was myrly an atempt to stop a lyk in the existing system, by giving syts ( in efekt ) to the Liberals, hw wer the best lwsers.

Som-thing lIk this system was eventualy yus'd in Japan and its anomalys wIdly reported ther. In Britain, it was given up as houples. ( The Wakeham report resorted to this system but only as a no-houp option, for a minor rol in the sekond chamber. ) British reformers started by belyving they kud ameliorat singl member konstituensy elektions, with a proportional kount, without having to resort to kontinental party list systems. The signifikans of the kritikal failur of the Blake report was the rekognition that this kud not be don.

Yet, in Britain, it had always byn said that party lists gav tu much power to the partys. A further step, in the retryt from prinsipl, kaim with Britain's first European elektions. Al the other Komon Market kuntrys wud be yusing list systems, and the tryty of Rome requir'd a uniform system, so a gud many British politicians bow'd to the inevitabl ( as they belyv'd ).

By the leit 1970s, Labor was lwsing its narow parlimentary majority, in a suksesion of by-elektion defyts, and had kom to a working aranjment with the Liberals, the Lib-Lab pakt. Labor didnt want traditional Liberal polisy for elektoral systems, the singl transferabl vot, wich they introdus'd in the Hous of Lords. This bil was a hint the Labor government was delaying tu much for the elektions to tak plas. The first Euro-elektions wer a yer lait, bekaus of the British government.

MynwIl, the Liberals oblijingly kaim up with a party list system, as being les ofensiv to the rejimented ranks of the Labor party. The Rejonal List alow'd voters to put an X by the individual kandidat on a party list they most prefer'd. The party member first past the post wud be elekted first, if indyd ther sher of the vot, as a party, waranted ther wining a syt.

If a party won a proportion of vots in the rejon that entItl'd them to tw of its syts, then ther kandidat, sekond past the post on the list, wud be elekted. Unfortunatly, this system is not fwl-prwf. The Hom sekretary had to admit, to questioning in parliment, that it was posible for a list kandidat to be elekted with no personal vots. He kan rId on the bak of other list kandidats, hw win mor vots than they nyd to klaim a syt.

This absurdity is the result of the Rejonal List kounting party loyalty as super-syding representativ demokrasy. This system wud later be kal'd an exampl of an 'open list'. A klos'd list givs no individual chois of kandidats, only alowing uon to vot for a party.

As swn as they kaim into ofis, in 1997, the Blair Labor government introdus'd a klos'd list for British Euro-elektions. A politikal komentator said this was at the behest of the Liberal Demokrats. This is probably tru, as the Liberals had byn out-raj'd at the defyt of the Rejonal List. They even went to the European kort of human rIts, failing to over-turn the desision.

But the nw Labor and Liberal alians didnt mak the mistak, this tIm, of leting parliment kritisis ther chois of elektoral system. The klos'd list was simply anouns'd by diktat of the PrIm Minister. So much for the konstitution.

4 Labor MEPs had wiping sanktions against them, for refusing, as uon of them said, to sIn a 'gaging order' on the subjekt. Tw of thys left wing MEPs wer ultimatly expel'd from the party.

No dout this was much to the plesur of the authoritarian rIt, hw had taken over from the authoritarian left, in the Labor party, ther lejendary lothing for ych other, aparently only exyded by ther lothing for demokratik voting method.

MynwIl, the Hous of Lords rejekted the klos'd list -- fIv tIms. Ther was talk of an open list, as if this wer som sort of salvation for individual representation. We hav syn, it had alredy byn expos'd to ridikul as kapabl of 'elekting' kandidats without any vots, or derisivly fw. Labor and ther Liberal Demokrat bakers nw wat they wer doing and mayd ther diskreditabl chois in favor of out-rIt denial of individual representation, the klos'd list, insted of the open list's bungl'd individual representation.

This Lords rebelion was ther last and futil akt befor hereditary pyrs wer abolish'd. Ther replasments hav defI'd advertising standards by being kal'd 'the pepl's pyrs'. In fakt, they ar not elekted by the pepl. They ar myrly apointed by a so-kal'd 'Independent Appointments Commission'. This is a kontra-diktion in terms, as the apointers ar narowly dependent on hw apointed them -- larjly the partys, depend upon it. And the pyrs themselvs, dependent on the apointers, ar aktualy 'the apointers' pyrs'.

Hyr ar mor Orwellian exampls of the political abyus of languaj, by wich the Establishment desyvs itself, it kan rul lejitimatly, by denying itself the authority of representation. Hyr again is the unwisdom of not kaling things by ther proper naims.

Richard Lung

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WI do we never lern any-thing from history?
Kontinuing the war gaims kais study of elektoral reform.

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