Guest Paul Posted November 27, 2008 Report Share Posted November 27, 2008 In the topic on how dictatorships are created (which quickly turned into another mud-fight over the pledge of allegiance), the unknown person who posts as “Lincoln Logger” criticized my suggestion that KOTW could be a vehicle for a democracy, writing: “The last I looked Kearny on the WEB was not a town hall meeting. It is nothing more than a blog for people to express what they feel, good or bad. This is not a newspaper the last I looked?” Those remarks reflect an unfortunate lack of imagination and a lack of faith in the democratic system and its practice here in Kearny. KOTW is a town message board. I can easily see how it could be used as an important vehicle for democracy. Jim Mangin and I didn’t agree on the problems facing Kearny or their best solutions, but for a brief time we did engage in a discussion, right here at KOTW. This forum is available to everyone. There are no time limits and hardly ever is anyone kept from expressing a point of view. This is what the internet makes possible; in turn, that makes greater democratic participation in the life of the community possible. If the people of Kearny have ideas for improving our town, then let's post them here. If a few good ideas appear on this forum, people will start paying more attention. Members of the town council and the mayor will soon get word of the interest being generated on KOTW. With the right attitudes within the community, KOTW could easily become an important vehicle for improving our town. But that's never going to happen if the people of Kearny don't open themselves to what a forum like this makes possible. That doesn’t mean that every idea will be a good one. Out of fifty ideas, maybe one would eventually be implemented. But that’s not failure, that’s success. That said, I’m inclined to think that the relative absence of ideas for improvements in Kearny mainly reflects the competence of the people in charge here. It’s possible, and I think likely, that our town officials are doing a good job on the whole, and that there aren’t any pressing issues in town whose handling requires a marked change in direction. But I could be wrong. Let’s use this forum as a vehicle for getting ideas on the table and discussing them. KOTW could be an important and vital vehicle for making democracy work, but it will only play that role if we take advantage of it, and actually try to make a contribution here and use KOTW to a productive end. The essence of democracy is that the people get to decide. We can make a forum like this anything we want it to be. All it takes is a positive attitude and a little imagination. Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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