When democracy gives us a result we approve of we embrace it, when it doesn’t we worry about it. However at the heart of the debate is the detail not the principle. In 2016 democracy delivered Trump the White House and the British people Brexit. In both cases there were huge flaws in the processes and, to some extent, the principle of the votes.
Hillary Clinton won the Presidential ballot by two million votes. But the serendipity of the electoral system denied her the Presidency. In Britain the winning side in the referendum lied to the electorate and there were dirty tricks. And the people didn’t know what we were voting for because nobody knew what we were voting for. At the very least there should have been a confirmatory plebiscite once the terms were known and the irregularities of the vote had been investigated.
“Democracy” is not a simple concept except at the most abstract level – “Citizens should choose their Government “ – that sort of thing. But how they make that choice is what really matters.
Too many votes in Britain don’t count because of FPTP. Because of the Electoral College in America a Republican vote in California or a Democrat vote in Wyoming doesn’t count. It doesn’t have to be like this. The Electoral College is actually anti-democratic and in 21st Century America wholly unnecessary.
There are well-tried voting systems that if applied at a British General Election would give an outcome that more accurately reflect the electorate’s collective wishes. And simplistic Yes/No referendums on highly complex issues wouldn’t happen because they would be unnecessary if we had a Parliament which more accurately reflected the people in its composition.