People Power. A User’s Guide to Democracy by Dan Jellinek

“there is no reason why people who protest cannot also vote or take part in more formal activities. In a sense, ‘formal’ politics is all that we have to run our lives as an organized, collaborative and cooperative group of people.”

This informative text borrows from the theorizing of Professor Colin Hay. It contends that the active citizen should engage in democratic politics for the benefit of society. It has no time for anarchists who view the state as an obstacle to freedom.

The strength of this text is not to be found in the abstract realm. There is little to be found here in relation to the undemocratic power of business interests. However, the book shows how we can get involved in processes that may help others. There are opportunities for political intervention at different levels of governance.

Perhaps the evolution of the UK is hampered by the vagueness of its constitutional arrangements. The flexibility of a largely unwritten constitution may be of use to the powerful. There is little evidence that it is of any assistance to the powerless. As the British state faces serious challenges to its future coherence, there are important debates to be had.





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