Your Reading Assignment

Nov 16, 2006 by

Well I am back and the verbal floggings shall begin forthwith. As I am still getting back into the swing of things (and catching up on all the news I missed) I shall begin with a brief reading assignment. Without further ado here is an excerpt from a lovely post by Becky.

Becky Houtman
“Although the Roman empire expanded to a great territory, the Roman republicans were never concerned about the actuality of political participation by citizens living far away from Rome, where the assembly met regularly. In fact, most citizens of the Roman empire probably never attended an assembly, and the situation created a random and skewed system of representation – those living close to Rome became de facto “representatives” of other citizens of the Roman empire.” – Representative Government and Democracy, Bo Li

With all the invocation of Democracy and the Founding Fathers in this latest planning process, one thing that seems to have been forgotten is the role of representation. With all of our actual elected representatives snubbing the UNOP, it’s more and more doubtful how much backbone the UNOP will have as a “Unified New Orleans Plan,” but it’s far from certain yet whether or how much the Lambert plans or any others will bear much fruit with respect to funding and implementation either. Whatever the fate of the UNOP, it’s worth drawing some lessons from its latest venture, especially with regard to what passes for public participation, for posterity if nothing else.

Your assignment is to read the rest of her post (comment if so inclined) and chew on it for awhile.

This underscores my repeated refrain that real representation is lacking. Didn’t someone throw a Tea Party up north about that once?

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