Beating Democracy into Shape - Poster or Postcard

18" x 12" poster on poster stock or as a 6" x 4" postcard.
Printed on 100% post consumer waste paper.

Beating Democracy into shape.

 Anti-iraq war demonstration - worldwide.

Throughout the Cold War, one of the lynchpins of Western self-identity was democratic government; we had it, they (the communists) didn't. Despite the fall of the Berlin Wall and the disappearance of the Iron Curtain, democracy, it would seem, is fading fast - especially in the core Western countries. The Institute for Democracy and Electoral Assistance ( ranks Britain 55th, Canada 77th and the USA 139th out of 172 countries for voter turnout since 1945 while the Center for Voting and Democracy ( argues that US elections aren't truly competitive largely as a result of re-districting policies that predetermine the result. Then of course, there are the more direct assaults on American democracy as witnessed by the 2000 election theft (see for more).

But democracy is much more than voting - it used to include such ideals as free speech, freedom of association and protection of civil liberties. With the spread of corporate led globalization, these have all been subsumed or negated by the needs of 'capital' at home and abroad. State military power (including police) is more and more used against citizens protesting economic and political injustice - witness the Battle in Seattle, Quebec City, Genoa, and just about any resource conflict in the southern hemisphere. Repression used to be the concern of communist and militarized states, now it's everyone's problem. We need to reclaim and reassert our rights as citizens in democratic states to ensure that the future shape of democracy is one we have chosen.

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