I am thinking of attending the Vaclav Havel European Dialogues Conference next month. Politics is something I am still interested in by rarely get a chance to participate in now I am out of the UK. In response to considering my attendance I quickly typed the following. Don't worry, I don't intend for this blog to be too political any more.
A short comment on the distance between politicos and the populace with regards to Europe.
There is a distance between those people who talk and know about politics (let alone politicians) and the people. This distance is exemplified by the discussions that are conducted over Europe. Within Europe you hear how the people are crying out for more Europe, more regulation, more integration, but in reality, the real words of the people are nothing of the sort.
When elections happen they reflect the mood of the country. Often this mood results in political parties and groups who have a positive view regarding politics. But in truth the public are not voting for this. They are voting for their respective social democratic party for improved living standards. Or they are voting for a right of centre party to take care of an ailing democracy. Or as a final example, they are voting socially conservative to preserve their way of life. They express themselves on a National or local level on national and local issues.
It is my position that the mandate allowed to politicians is too wide once they are elected. We vote for large parties with a range of issues and some things get through that the people wouldn't have supported in a million years; manifestos are created for PR not policy. Europe is so frequently one of these issues. When the various peoples of the EU voted for the Lisbon Treaty they overwhelmingly rejected it. That was a momentous occasion. It was in itself the first time for many they had had a direct comment on the European project. Ever. And they said no.
The aim of this was to comment and not answer a question so I am not going to go any further other than to say that a narrowing of the power of politicians can only strengthen our democracy and the freedom.