Politics beyond politicians

Political parties and the political class in general want citizens to stay out of politics — why wouldn’t they? Less participation and less mobilization means no accountability for the political class. This signal to keep out of politics is communicated by the most deceptive means:

a) Politics is for dirty people, so you stay out of it.
b) Politics is for people who can’t do anything else, so you stay out of it.
c) Politics requires money and muscle so you stay out of it.

I beg to differ. Politics is the preeminent means of public problem solving. We don’t solve public problems through technology or science or management, we solve public problems through politics. State politics — elections, voting etc — is only one kind of politics. Instead of shrinking the domain of politics to fit the desires of the political class, we should expand the domain of politics to include all realms of public engagement.

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