Sunday, 14 November 2010

Paul Foot

Very few, if any, Poplar councillors of 1921 were revolutionaries, however. They wanted to change their world by the means provided for them by the 1918 Representation of the People Act, through the ballot box. But they were not prepared to sit passively by while their power as elected councillors was whittled away by the economic system and the judges and regulators imposed not by ballot but by ancient prejudices and reactionary laws.
The real meaning of Poplarism is the use by elected representatives of their democratic power to challenge laws and customs that restrict democracy. The Poplar councillors not only used that power. They used it at least to some extent successfully, and for that they could never be forgiven

- The Vote: How it was Won and how it was Undermined, 2005:260

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