Thursday, September 29, 2011

FDA Research on the Afghanistan Electoral System

FDA research shows that Afghanistan democracy is similar to democracy in the Western countries that imposed it on the country: too much emphasis on freedom in the mass media, weak and unfair electoral finance laws, and favoring of candidates and parties with greater access to financial resources and that are more established. (France is an exception.)

Afghanistan democracy is contingent on the Afghan government through the Independent Electoral Commission and the Joint Electoral Management Body in terms implementation and enforcement of the electoral laws. Similar to Iraq's de-Baathification program, the Afghanistan electoral system is biased against the Taliban.

It is questionable that the Afghan government, an extension of US interests in Afghanistan since the government was first installed by the Americans and is allied to the Americans, is a reliable and trustworthy upholder and enforcer of the western influenced Afghan constitution and electoral laws. Beyond this point, it is questionable that the Afghan constitution and electoral laws really represents the will of the Afghan people since the framework for the constitution and electoral laws were imposed on Afghanistan.

On October 4th, FDA auditors will conduct a detailed audit of the Afghan electoral system to determine its electoral fairness score and rating.

FDA research on Afghanistan

2011 FDA Global Electoral Fairness Audit on France 

Monday, September 26, 2011

Spain's democracy: a two party dictatorship

With reference to the FDA Report on Spain's democracy, FDA auditors determine that Spain's democracy unfairly favors parties successful in the previous election. The Spanish system, which has similarities to Canadian and American federal democracy, promotes a status quo through two parties, and thereby creates a narrow and unbalanced electoral discourse, and less informed electorate. Consequently, Spanish political society is deprived of progression and is vulnerable to corruption.

2011 FDA Electoral Fairness Audit Report on Spain

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Spain receives a failing grade for electoral fairness

An eight-person FDA audit team met last night to audit electoral fairness in Spain's parliamentary monarchy electoral system.

After two hours of discussion, the FDA auditors gave Spain the following scores:

Political content of media (including broadcasters and the press):  53.75 percent

Candidate and party influence:  40 percent

Electoral finance:  11 percent

Voter say:  64.3 percent

Total:  42.25 percent (Rank: 6 out of 26 countries)

The Spanish electoral system has areas of electoral fairness including proportional representation and free public airtime to all registered parties. However, these areas are more than offset by legislated bias to parties successful in the previous election, weak regulation of the political content of media, and poor transparency of electoral finances.

Since the fall of the Franco dictatorship, the Spanish electoral system has had only two parties in power. (People's Party and the Spanish Socialist Worker's Party) In the FDA's opinion, the Spanish electoral system is legislated to produce a two party system (though not as significantly as the US federal system). Although such an approach maintains a status quo, the Spanish democracy is weakened by a narrow electoral discourse, which deprives Spaniards of electoral choice. An entrenched status quo can also undermine a democracy and society by stifling progressive ideas and allowing a minority to control the country.

An optimal democracy will encourage broad electoral discourse and create an equal playing field for registered parties.

The FDA Report of Spain will be completed by September 28.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Spain's Political System Similar to Canada's

Spain's parliamentary political system overall is similar to Canada's federal political system, in the sense that there exists in both systems significant unfair favoring of large, established political parties. Spain's regulation of the mass media and electoral finances, similar to Canada's, favors significantly parties sucessful in the previous election. And just like in Canada, the majority of Spanish parliamentarians determine the laws and regulations of the Spanish political system, which creates a blatant conflict of interest.

On September 21st, FDA audits will convene to determine precisely electoral fairness in the Spanish political system. A FDA electoral fairness audit report on Spain will then be produced on Spain.

FDA research on Spain

Monday, September 12, 2011

American Assumptions on Freedom Challenged

This article in the June 2011 issue of The Altantic suggests of the emergence of challenges to American assumptions on freedom. The FDA Report on Iraq does very this, by arguing that American federal democracy has too much emphasis on liberty at the expense of electoral equality and fairness. Unfortunately, in the opinion of the FDA, this flawed democratic model has been imported to Iraq.

Danger Falling Tyrants

FDA Report on Iraq

Friday, September 9, 2011

Iraq's federal democracy receives failing overall score of 35.25 percent for electoral fairness

In the 2011 FDA Electoral Fairness Audit Report on Iraq, Iraq's federal democracy received a failing overall score of 35.25 percent. The score is 5.25 percent greater than what the US federal democracy received (30 percent), and yet it is 56 percent less than what France received (91.25 percent).

Despite many elements of electoral fairness, Iraq's democracy is undermined by an overemphasis on electoral freedom and at the expense of electoral equality and fairness. In particular, the Iraq's media and electoral finance laws are severely deficient. The FDA recommends significant reform of Iraq's democracy in order to avoid the entrenchment of significant electoral inequality and unfairness like in the US federal democratic system.

2011 FDA Electoral Fairness Audit Report on Iraq