“Democracy is the best I can think of right now”


For all his greatness, Churchill screwed up when he said “Democracy is the worst form of government, except for all the others.”

Firstly, it’s an absolute statement. Like the phrase ‘best practise’ is an absolute statement which says there is and can be no better way of doing something, so this statement about democracy doesn’t challenge us to innovate. Indeed it can be used to mock innovation since “if Churchill said it then…”

Secondly, and most importantly, ‘democracy’ is too broad a word to make this meaningful. There are many types of democracy, and some varieties of democracy provide better representation and more freedom for their citizens than others.

What he should have said is “”Democracy is the best I can think of right now, but no doubt something will come along and refine it to be better.” My money’s on Delegative Democracy – where we delegate our votes on different topics to (different) individuals we trust to make wise decisions on that topic.

Ed Dowding

Ed Dowding

Founder, strategist, writer, gadfly, TED talker, world-record holder, and (foolishly) reality-TV farmer. DOES: Innovation, Product, Advocacy THINKS: Regenerative Systems, Institution design, 300 year horizons


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