boris-trump

Voting to change the world – without triggering violence

Faults in democracy have been tolerated for centuries, but this year is different. The problems have become more serious – and a solution has emerged. The US presidential election and the UK referendum have decided very important issues by narrow margins, leaving half of the people in two great nations feeling pleased, and the other half feeling angry and resentful. The campaigns were loaded with insults, accusations and promises that…

squid

People are voting in China

Some people think that countries with limits on the expression of public opinion may not allow Live Forum TV to be broadcast, because it invites people to express their opinions by voting. So here’s a surprise! A new TV series in Mainland China, encouraged by a regional government, is inviting the public to vote – and it’s very popular! The programme has an eye-catching name: “You’re Stir-fried Squid”, which means “You’re fired”.…

Cameron 3forblog

The Brexit-EU crisis CAN be resolved

Millions of people are now angry about the outcome of the referendum – and a change to more positive attitudes and prospects can be achieved by applying a new form of democracy called Live Forum TV. The Live Forum TV (LFTV) process, developed by the Live Forum Foundation in Geneva, is designed to involve the public in reaching a consensus on issues of national and international importance. The TV format,…

Pic of doctors on strike cut

Doctors on strike

This week 45,000 doctors in the UK are being called to strike against a new contract of employment introduced by the government. Strikes and demonstrations are used in many countries to draw attention to a cause. They can be expressions of frustration or anger, mixed with camaraderie as people come together with a shared point of view. However strikes are becoming less common. Is that because they are ineffective or…

Thomas Jefferson

The race to become President of the USA

The race to become President of the United States is intensely competitive and some candidates are making statements to get themselves in the news, with little thought beyond their desire to be elected.   Politicians in democracies often make promises that cannot be delivered. Last year the Syriza party in Greece promised to ease austerity, in line with the wishes of many people and governments around the world. For Greece…

aleppoBlog (1)

Can anyone be trusted?

The militia and armies fighting each other in Syria today face extremes of doubt and distrust. None of them know who their next attacker might be and the information war is equally alarming: promises and reports can never be trusted. It will take years to achieve peace, and much longer to rebuild trust. Against this background of chaos, with danger everywhere, one might ask if it is ever possible to…

Hong Kong on map

Does the West have free elections?

Protests in Hong Kong started with demands that the public must be allowed to propose and elect anyone to serve as Chief Executive. If the government of China were to agree, and allow anyone to become a candidate for election, would that make Hong Kong better, or more like western democracies? In theory, voters in western democracies are free to elect anyone but in reality they are presented with one…

Woman with a video camera

TV with a purpose

The focus of television broadcasters on providing entertainment and information has been crucial in building their ability to reach people almost everywhere around the globe. Now the world’s most powerful communication medium is ready for a new and much more important role. Television has immense power because it can deliver information immediately, clearly and attractively to billions of people. In recent years it has gained an extra dimension – the…

greekPension

Doubts about democracy?

On 5th July the people of Greece voted against proposals for covering the country’s €330 billion debt,  in the hope of getting better terms. Their leaders said that the vote was democratic, so other countries must respect it, but people in countries that  were expected to provide more money had not been given a chance to vote.   A few weeks earlier, at Britain’s election in May 2015, 1.4 million…

hongKongBlog

A new opportunity for Hong Kong

On 18th June Hong Kong’s legislature decided not to accept a package of reforms proposed by the Government of China. This was broadly because a number of members wanted to move further towards a traditional form of democracy. Might this persuade China’s leaders to shift their position? China continues to take a firm stand against calls for western-style democracy, and the penalties faced by anyone on the Mainland calling for…