Participatory democracy

'I've been in this process for so many years now and I always have the same feeling,' she said. 'In these times of so much
In the long run, our national system can only survive if we -- old as well as young -- see it functioning well and if individual citizens accept their responsibility to support it. But, it's wrong to conclude that today's young persons are bad citizens.
Back from the first global conference on money in politics in Mexico City, I'm bursting with stories that might carry messages of possibility that Americans need right now. Sure worked for me.
I want to find out how other countries are fighting for democracy against its corruption by powerful private interests. My learning began in a conversation with Secretary General Yves Leterme of the International Institute for Democracy and Electoral Assistance (IDEA), a Stockholm-based organization of 28 member states.
On this July 4th, let's declare our independence from bad meetings. It's time to demand that we all be heard when we gather, not just on election day, but everyday.
Why should you or I have to wait until enough Republicans or Democrats join us in a majority for us to get done anything we think wise? Why don't we just get together with like-minded people and do it ourselves in the private sector?
Estela Hernandez is both a member of the national assembly and a leader in the transformational social movement, La Coordinadora of the Lower Lempa and the Bay of Jiquilisco in rural El Salvador. Here, Hernandez talks about a radical vision and practice of direct, participatory democracy by the citizens.
I've just returned from 10 days of travel with my family in Scotland. The "Yes" side in the battle over the referendum on Scottish independence, to be held September 19, is another example of aspirations for civic empowerment, especially among young people, appearing around the world.
Participatory planning integrates the poor and vulnerable into the housing development process and ensures that good intentions are translated into impact for the community.
Every year millions of Americans are summoned to jury service. Yet, no organized, centralized space exists to collect or share what jurors think about this experience. Juror voices are lost. And, this is a loss for the court system and American democracy.
The Iowa Caucuses were held Tuesday night. No national cameras or crowds, just a dark night, snow and below-zero wind chills.
Accurate information is one thing, but testing in overdrive is quite another; it is a lousy strategy for nurturing anyone's brilliance.
If leaders with an agenda begin to surface from Occupy and take the electoral route, will they become only well-funded democrats? Can Occupy have an impact without moving inside; without mounting a full effort to reform the system?
Mayor Adel Al Rafia'a complained that he is officially unable to give a bonus to an employee without the approval of the
Ford and his drug-dealing pals reflect a deeper problem than just substance abuse. It's another example of the growing crisis of legitimacy of our democratic institutions.
Why has all the political punditry failed in predicting an end to the Syrian crisis and why have the experts repeatedly miscalculated the fall of the regime in Damascus?
Citizens, for their part, grow cynical and angry and learn nothing from poorly designed, empty-gesture or cynically rigged public participation exercises. As a consequence, the spiral of mistrust, gridlock and political dysfunction deepens.
The window of opportunity only shrinks. Now would be the time for the so-called Democratic base to signal -- via active constituency -- that we've got Barack's back. I'll call my congressional delegation if you call yours.