🗳️Labour's U-turn on Citizens' Assemblies Shows They Fear The People

🗳️Labour's U-turn on Citizens' Assemblies Shows They Fear The People

The Labour Party’s 24-hour U-turn on introducing Citizens' Assemblies is testament to the radical idea of actually letting ordinary people control their own future. When you realise that, it’s no wonder Keir Starmer fears them. He should. 

Citizens’ Assemblies are our last hope for rational governance in our age of climactic collapse. But the ‘powers that soon will be’ were keen to co-opt that. They only want to use them to patch up the fraying legitimacy of the neoliberal regime. That’s kind of what the Labour Party does. 

But once the spectre of real democracy was raised, the Party dropped the idea like a hot rock. Just like when Labour responded to Corbynmania by desperately trying to stop ordinary people joining the Party.

Citizens’ Assemblies have been the wet dream of the liberal middle classes for a while now. It’s like the last cake they can throw out the window of their ivory towers before the pitchforks come out. It won’t work. 

Any citizens assemblies will back the people by definition. It would just take too much obvious manipulation to thwart them once they inevitably come up with rational, common sense policies. Things like: “Apparently this country doesn’t have enough money for its people to live in dignity. So let’s tax the mind-bogglingly rich. We can use that to pay for some hospitals, schools and public transport.” 

It’s beyond naive to believe the elites will simply fall for the idea that Citizens’ Assemblies are a “good idea” - like turkeys voting for Christmas. 

There’s no point waiting for the government to do this for us. They’ll only ever allow a pale imitation of the real deal. 

Citizens’ Assemblies are not a technocratic solution. They are a political revolutionary act. If given real power as a House of Citizens, they can change the regime from a corrupted representative form to an incorruptible sortition-based system where ordinary people are selected by lottery. 

Citizens’ Assemblies will take real power only by radical social movements setting them up for themselves. They will then quickly gain popular political power to counter the constitutional power of the House of Commons. 

So the scene will be set for the classic battles of twenty-first-century social struggle. Bring it on.

I've got two focuses:

  • Revolution - Building social formations to create revolution and guide moments of social disruption.
  • A Balanced Society - Building the new civilisation based on a new balance of deliberative democracy, compassion, and limited consumption.

Want to join me? Sign up my monthly Zoom call.

Can't wait a month? Sign up for nonviolent civil resistance with Just Stop Oil in the UK or via the A22 Network internationally. Alternatively, you can now join a new collaborative project I'm helping with called Humanity which is aiming to build the new world ahead based on deliberative democracy.

The Climate Situation is F*cked

Help me to get on with the job of sorting it out.