Paticipatory Democracy in Korea

January 2nd, 2003 | Posted by paul in Uncategorized - (Comments Off on Paticipatory Democracy in Korea)

In South Korea, it’s the mouse that roars. Using the internet, Korea’s new president, Mr. Roh. was able to pull off a victory using the grass-roots support empowered by internet activism.

The Internet allowed Mr. Roh to liberate himself from “black money” — corporate donations that are South Korea’s traditional form of campaign financing. Largely through Internet-based campaign groups, Mr. Roh raised the equivalent of about $1-billion from more than 180,000 individual donors.

The newly elected Mr. Roh… is promising to use the Internet to make the government more open and transparent.

Meanwhile here in the good ol USA, petty fascism continues. Lawerence Lessig writes:

People on both the left and right  boil in this space about what’s happening outside. Yet outside blog space, there is just more of the same. The Times writes about Democratic hopefuls rallying to attack Bush for not making America safe enough. Wonderful. Who ever wins in 2004, we can be assured of more petty fascism to keep America safe.

Where is the candidate who asks: Must we sell our soul to win this war? Where is the political party that demands respect for principles that I thought were fundamental. If we must detain Arabs, must we do so inhumanely? If we must frisk every air traveler, can’t we at least build in checks to the system to assure that it is not abused? If we must fight to defend America, can it at least be America that we defend?

I’m all with Dave that this space will be the space for political action in the future. If only the future comes soon enough.