Folkstyret is a democratic party offering citizens an opportunity for control over the agenda, full inclusion, political equality and to secure their individual liberties.
Mission and Purpose
Folkstyrets’ mission statement¹
The purposes of Folkstyret is to:
Make democratic development possible
Democracy has spread throughout the world in waves to more and more countries. When a country is democratized, it typically starts out as a polyarchy, as it is the first stage of democratic development. A polyarchy allows a country’s political elites to continue to govern the country through political parties, albeit with greater democratic legitimacy due to universal suffrage. However, the political elites and their parties do not want to relinquish power and hand that over to the citizens, which is the hallmark of real democracy. Instead, they want to concentrate as much power as possible to themselves. The competition between the political elites, and the political parties they work through, therefore obstructs democratic development after the first polyarchic step. Since Folkstyret is a democratic party that acts as a direct channel between the citizens and the political power, the citizens themselves can, in general elections, decide how much direct influence they want and how much they want to delegate to the political elites and political parties. Citizens have the opportunity not only to distribute power between the various political elites but also to distribute power between the political elites and themselves. In practice it is a version of sortition within a Bicameral System where the citizens themselves regulate the balance of power between the sortition chamber and elected chamber. This makes democratic development possible beyond polyarchy. This allows for political decisions beyond the legitimacy of the polyarchy. Democracy can begin to grow in depth so that it concludes more in every society and is not limited to spreading across the surface of the planet.
Protect the existing democracy
The political power play between the various political elites means that the political parties, in their quest for power, can be attracted to acquire help from undemocratic parties. This gives undemocratic parties political influence. Democratic parties use their influence to dismantle democracy. Anyone who wants to get rid of the most basic and undeveloped form of democracy we have in Sweden (the polyachy) can do so in just a couple of years. First through a simple majority decision in the Riksdag (175 votes agains 174), then a quick extra election and a new vote in the Riksdag with the same result. Then democracy is gone. Since Folkstyret is the only party that, because of its own constitution, cannot contribute to abolishing any individual freedoms, Folkstyret is the only guarantor that democratic development will not continue backwards as it has done in the last decade. (Down 5% according to the Economists Democracy Index.)
Populism is growing in the gap that arises between citizens and political elites. The populist claims to be the sole interpreter of the will of the real people. Instead of giving voice to a silent majority, the populist almost always expresses the views of a very loud minority. With Folkstyret, the citizens, with every vote in Parliament, can see the opinions of their own representatives in all the social issues that is decided on. No populist can with any credibility claim that the people wants something else when everyone can see the actual result with their own eyes. This removes the basis of populism.
Let each new generation conquer democracy and make it their own
There is a wealth of democratic institutions, but the most important one is missing. The one who constantly includes the citizens in the political decisions and lets the citizens speak. It is through participation that each new generation can conquer democracy and make it their own. We are learning by doing. Every citizen learns how democracy works by being a part of it and it is through participation that each one of us can shape our own democratic values. Democracy must be reborn in every generation, education is its midwife and Folkstyret can be the institution that constitutes the maternity ward.
Origins and Development
Organizational Structure, Membership, and Funding
Specializations, Methods and Tools
Major Projects and Events
Analysis and Lessons Learned
¹ “Quick facts about Folkstyret.”Folkstyret, 11 Jan. 2020, www.folkstyret.se/quick-facts-about-folkstyret/?lang=en.