Is Direct Democracy Possible on a Large Scale?

At the end of a course I teach, Brainwashing, Propaganda and Rhetoric, and after we have discussed the different forms of capitalist propaganda, I ask the students if they think they could manage their workplaces without their boss. Surprisingly for me, most people say they can. However, when I ask them if they think they could coordinate their self-run workplaces with other workplaces, their social imagination goes silent.

This article first discusses the capitalist ideology that produced the propaganda that large scale direct democracy is not possible. Then the author demonstrates why it is not true, using historical as well as contemporary examples.

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Painting by Donald Davis for NASA. Public Domain.

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