Residents of Metro Vancouver are only moderately committed to democracy and many are open to alternative forms of government such as rule by expert, strongman or the military.
Those are among some of the findings of a new public opinion survey from Simon Fraser University’s Morris J. Wosk Centre for Dialogue.
The online survey of 1,506 Metro Vancouver residents from Aug. 7-13 was released in a report this week as part of a larger project intended to build a stronger commitment to Canadian democracy, according to the report.
The survey found about 35 per cent of residents believe representative democracy is a good way to govern and that all other systems are bad. Another 47 per cent believed representative government was good, but other systems were too. And 17 per cent said only other systems — or no systems — were good.
About 61 per cent of respondents believed direct democracy was a good or very good way to govern. Rule by experts, rule by a strong leader and rule by the military received 50, 20 and nine per cent support, respectively.
Meanwhile, Metro Vancouver residents appeared to be open to populist arguments and nativist appeals — as described in the report as “common people vs. the elites” and “Canada-first” appeals. About 75 per cent said they would be more likely to vote for a candidate if they stood up for common people against the elite, and 52 per cent said they would be more likely to vote for candidates who put Canada first, even if it negatively affected relations with allies.
Many Vancouver residents expressed negative opinions about citizen participation in a democracy. About 40 per cent of respondents said voting “by people like me” doesn’t really affect how government runs, and 52 per cent said ordinary citizens can’t do much to …read more
Source:: Vancouver Sun