After weeks of attempting to smear and undermine UKIP in the run-up to the European Elections, the British left is still coming to terms with the party’s sweeping victory last week.
Young liberal-leftists have expressed their outrage on social media, complaining about the actions of their fellow countrymen and finding it comprehend that so many people could hold different views.
More mature people are now also critiquing a system that can allow such a party to succeed. Writing for the left-wing Independent newspaper, Adrian Wooldridge, Management Editor for The Economist magazine takes the issue head on.
In the provocatively titled piece “Has Ukip’s success in the European elections proved that democracy is a flawed way to choose a government?”, Wooldridge examines the very nature of democracy and questions whether ordinary voters are informed enough to vote responsibly.
Wooldridge writes that although there may be “of reasons for popular discontent at the moment”, such as out-of-touch EU technocrats isolated from the financial crisis, voters must take their share of the blame for the current situation:
But “you”- the men and women reading this article and grumbling about broken politics – cannot escape some of the blame for the current crisis. You have maxed out your credit cards and thrown away the bill. You have voted for unaffordable social programmes. You have called for more spending and lower taxes. You have ignored the politicians who call for a return to responsibility (Jean-Claude Juncker, the former Prime Minister of Luxembourg, who is in the running to become the head of the European Commission, likes to quip of his fellow politicians that “we all know what to do; we just don’t know how to get elected if we do it”). And you have behaved just as irresponsibly, in last week’s election, as you did in the ones before that.
Wooldridge goes on to ask: “Can anything be done about the problem of “you”? A growing number of people are beginning to conclude that the answer is: “Very little.””
He then goes on to list various flaws in the democratic system, but eventually comes back to quoting Winston Churchill’s famous quip about democracy being “the worst form of government apart from all the others that have been tried from time to time” and concludes that it is still better than the alternatives.
Despite the fact that Wooldridge concludes that democracy is the least worst form of government, and that the EU needs reform, it is noteworthy that the left-wing press only chooses to discuss the nature of democracy when a party of the right wins an election.
UKIP candidate Gawain Towler told Breitbart London that the article represented “the authentic voice of the soi-disant, disgusted by the voice of the people.”