WE HAVE a golden opportunity to change our country from the sad spectacle of feuding tribes into one in which every one of us contributes in a fair and democratic way to the decisions affecting our lives. The absurdity of First Past The Post has produced a government voted for by only 25% of us but accorded 100 per cent of our power and which now behaves like a dictatorship. The political parties that 75% of us voted for are the ones who must now shoulder the responsibility and provide the means to escape from this political jungle. It's in their interests and those of the general public to challenge this current sham of democracy and unite people once more with Proportional Representation.

Let's forget the hollow suggestions that nothing gets done in a coalition government. We won a war with it. Like it or not, we are at war again but now with one another. The divisiveness of party politics has infiltrated our society with all of the dirty tricks, misinformation and skills of the 'fifth columnists' of the 1940’s.

West Dorset District Council is only a microcosm of the effects of party politics feeding into the very fabric of our lives. According to M/s Gillian Summers in the press last week, leaders of WDDC’s last and present cabinet committees have felt “bound to choose people from the majority party in order to allow decision making which is in the best interests of the ratepayers and not because of party politics”

They are not “bound” to do anything of the sort and it’s clear that party politics is why they choose to do so. It’s as rampant here as it is in Westminster. I suppose she felt “bound” last year when she was Chairman of WDDC to denigrate the Public First Group (PFG) which has since petitioned for and achieved a referendum to change WDDC’s governance from ‘Leader and Cabinet’ to the more democratic and representative ‘Committees’ style, the first of its type in the South of England under the 2011 Localism Act.

She was quoted as saying of PFG , “Don’t get drawn into this until you have looked at the personal history of the people who are organising it and their motives.” I suppose they had committed the unforgiveable sin of trying to improve local democracy, but an apology or explanation is overdue even it comes from a ‘private citizen and ratepayer’ as she now describes herself.

Mike Joslin

Garfield Avenue