Tim Dunlop in The Future of Everything, argues, among other things, that voting does not really ensure democracy, and that we would be better using the process of sortition; elect the bastards at random, pardon the French.
“If we want to fix the way our governments work, the first thing we should do is replace voting with sortition in at least some of our governing bodies. Sortition means to choose – to “sort” – by the use of lots; that is, by random sample, like the method we use to choose jurors for a court case. Instead of voting for members of parliament or congress, we should choose at least some of them randomly. It is the most straightforward way of enabling ordinary citizens to participate in the running of their country, and the effect it would have on politics and government would be transformative. Most of us think of voting as the cornerstone of a true democracy. When a new country in the developing world moves towards democracy, we tend to judge its initial success by how soon it is able to hold “free and fair” elections. We rejoice in this coming of age. Indeed, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights presents voting as one of our fundamental rights: “The will of the people shall be the basis of the authority of government; this will shall be expressed in periodic and genuine elections which shall be by universal and equal suffrage and shall be held by secret vote or by equivalent free voting procedures.” But, this is the whole problem: voting has come to actively undermine “the will of the people” and we need a system that will restore their primacy. Sortition is that system.”