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We should listen to the Vedums elitekritikk

An interview with Senterpartileder Trygve Slagsvold Vedum of the class struggle in the christmas season has set in motion a debate about elites and rhetoric. In an editorial accuses Dagbladet Vedum to use a dangerous and divisive rhetoric when he criticizes el-cycling "elite" in Oslo to no ability to formulate a policy for the rest of the people.

How we express ourselves matters a lot and Dagbladet have the right in that Vedum at times formulate in a way that easily can be interpreted as Oslofolk can't protect the farmers and distriktsfolks interests. It is unfortunate. Nevertheless, I think more of us should listen to Vedum. He is the canary in the mine that captures a sense of powerlessness among many in the rural areas.

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Vedums criticism is aimed at a perfect storm of events. It apparently looks like the budget laws of nature, which rewards centralization, economies of scale and specialization, making it difficult to keep life in the Norwegian districts, and agriculture.

the Politicians accelerates this development to work for the freer flow of people and capital across national borders. In addition, the moved several governmental and municipal tasks to more central areas to cut costs and keep pace with the development.

Politics is done apparently without having to worry about how it turns out for people in rural areas. Taxes on pollution and the toll is the symbol of the politics that certainly can be a good idea in cities, but in rural areas, where one is depending on the car, it quickly becomes just an extra burden.

When this is pointed out, defense decision-makers that this is the way it must be. The experts have spoken. The result is a feeling of alienation, of not being understood and heard. It is therefore about the lack of participation in decision-making.

Vedum reminds us that people live their lives locally and not easily moved to where they throw most of them. It gives us at least a reason to give people time to adapt to the changes.

It also gives the politicians a reason to listen to the Vedums counsel to show, in all possible ways, that a represents the broad layers of the people, and that their interests are taken care of.

It gets more difficult when it comes to the radical solutions Vedum suggest. He wants to move decisions today are taken by bureaucrats, the courts and supranational bodies, to the Parliament. Away with the experts and with the elected officials.

This must of course be assessed from case to case, but I'm afraid it will create less predictability, less efficient utilization of scarce resources and more ansvarspulverisering. There is also no guarantee that districts will win on such a system.

I would rather recommend to the central party and the other parties to think again and grab hold of the opportunities new technology provides to us. A place to start is to take a look at the suggestions to the nystarta movement RadicalXChange, which emanates from the ideas in the book Radical Markets by Glen Weyl and Eric Posner, which I wrote about in the local newspaper in the summer.

To the Norwegian districts be strengthened, we need a political system that takes account for the intensity of people's preferences without inflicting the silent majority for major costs. A stemmesystem where people can use more than one vote on the areas they really care about, will make it possible.

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secondly we need more local production of fellesgoder. New technology makes it possible to utilize the Norwegian sense of community to create even better communities.

imagine a more collectively inclined, where one could agree on the funding and commissioning of local projects, like the construction of new playgrounds. Eventually it can be developed to apply to larger projects today are financed by the state and municipalities.

thirdly we need a new agricultural policy that does not make the farmers nedsylta in debt and dependent on government transfers. Norway is not created for large-scale agriculture, but it is also not the only option. One of the most exciting trends in agriculture now is meat created in a laboratory. There is no reason that Norway should take part in this development.

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