Tridents to turbines

A thoughtful comment by Ian Davis on what Britain could do instead of diving ahead with a replacement for the “independent” nuclear deterrent that the United States has allowed us to sit on Daddy’s knees and steer around underwater for the last few decades.

Real democracy would mean a nation sufficiently confident in itself to debate this question widely, with all those involved being confident of having some influence on the final result. That would mean ordinary people having more than a vote in the general election of 2005, under Britain’s grotesque first-past-the-post system, and another within five years, quite probably after the decision on Trident had been made by prime ministerial fiat, rubber stamped in cabinet and shepherded through parliament with the odd Labour rebel voice silenced by the Conservative opposition’s support.

This important debate, like so many in British political life, is one in which we ordinary voters may only bleat out our contributions. We have the most miniscule of influence on the political process that will determine the outcome. Trident’s future is important. The rotten state of our democracy is all the more so.

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