Local democracy, an illusion?


Long lived local governmental boards and committees, after many years leave their aging foot prints of “cultural conformity.”   New groups shape themselves after the old.

The unvarying patterns of uniformity and consistency might be described as related more to the acts of the cult but without reverence for one thing, as each ego in the group is the subject of its own veneration.

These patterns are easily discerned in the accord of recorded votes over the years. The basic reverence is for individual ego and its expression is through the development and within the process of “group thought.”

Therefore, it doesn't make any difference who we vote for, even if candidates are absorbed in their affiliations with national parties and issues, for upon election at the local level, the established patterns of process draw them into conformance and into cultural uniformity, even when from time to time, one member might show slight deviation as to a certain issue.  The process controls.

I've been observing this principle in action in a number of communities and more recently here in Shorewood and have seen sufficient evidence to prove that a principle both in function and reality does exist.

Among political candidates this “cultural conformity” is referred to as experience. Within the group it is accepted as political expediency but never referred to as such, perhaps for fear it might reveal the underlying uniformity process.

When the members are unable to form a consensus on an issue at one meeting, they will postpone decisions and come together again in the veneration of consensus, often after the issue is institutionalized in form, by passage through at least one committee.

Local government is where the authority of ego is able to survive group subjugation as the rule of consensus permits its expression through the consensus forming process. Whatever the material or issue under scrutiny, the eye of the group is focused on consensus.

The fact that local officials are unable to represent  their constituents and that they get caught up in this pattern of cultural uniformity, while  not giving them any dictatorial classification, reveals that representative or democratic government cannot be made to function at the local level.

Thinking that it can, may remain our constant illusion.

Individual response to this thesis from members of our village board would be interesting to say the least; however, such an unreasonable expectation does not take the arrogance of authority nor that of concensus into account.

This site uses Facebook comments to make it easier for you to contribute. If you see a comment you would like to flag for spam or abuse, click the "x" in the upper right of it. By posting, you agree to our Terms of Use.

Page Tools