From From the Trees to the Stars

The Greeks came up with the idea of democracy, that everyone in the population should have a say in the way things are done.

In a direct democracy, every decision is put to a vote. This can work well in small groups, but has historically been impractical to implement on a large scale.

The form of government practiced in most modern countries is described as representative democracy.

The idea behind it is that by allowing the broader population to choose who makes decisions on their behalf, they are indirectly influencing those decisions.

But the processes by which people are selected to be put forward for election and the mechanisms by which the elections are conducted and counted introduce an enormous amount of bias.

As the purview of the government continues to be eroded, with increasing privatisation of resources, industries and infrastructure, we find ourselves living instead in an oligarchy with a pantomime government serving little functional purpose other than to reassure people that they are in fact living in a democracy.