Wednesday, October 12, 2005

Iraqi's Vote On A Constitution With An Asterik

Democracy is not easy or simple. Drafting a Constitution that will guide a country forward in a democratic political structure is complex. So why not add more complexity?

Iraqis voting on October 15th have several key elements going against them: they face the threat of violence if they so choose to excercise their right to vote, they will in all likelihood have not seen the final draft version of the Constitution as it is still being reworked, and even if approved the Constitution is already open for changes after the election.

Picture this scenario, your town is considering whether to add funding for a new sports field next to the local school. The local government passes the funding, but local citizens circulate a petition to put the question of said funding on the ballot for voters to decide whether this is a wise course of action. Voters will not see the wording on the ballot until they walk in the door because no one could agree on how it should be worded until the night before. Additionally, the morning of the vote, the same local government passes a resolution stating that the vote will then be debated and leaves open the possibility of creating the fields anyway.

That is not democracy, that is local shenanigans.

Imagine if a constitution is created in that same manner. Wouldn't the voters sense this to be sheer mockery?

U.S. Ambassador to Iraq, Zalmay Khalilzad has been quite busy making this game work for the American Administration. The results of all this skullduggery should be interesting after October 15th.

1 comment:

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