- Pickled Politics - http://www.pickledpolitics.com -

Saira Khan demands more democracy

Posted By Leon On 4th September, 2006 @ 12:15 pm In Current affairs | Comments Disabled

I have to say I’m not the biggest fan of [1] The Apprentice but have watched it a few times here and there. Runner up [2] Saira Khan seems to be trying real hard to make a TV career post appearing on the show. I’m not sure that’s a good thing, she irritates the hell out of me, no idea why, I think it’s her voice.

Anyway, [3] her latest venture is democracy; I’m all about democracy, so I find the ‘[4] Our Say’ campaign very interesting…

Former The Apprentice contestant Saira Khan is launching a campaign to give people a greater say on major issues through the use of referendums. Her campaign, entitled Our Say, aims to give the public “a direct say over the issues that really matter to them”.

A poll would be triggered by a petition supported by 2.5% of voters, which is 1m people nationally or 4,000 locally. Ms Khan insisted: “Politicians have to get serious about sharing power with the people.” [Via [5] BBC news]

Well said, and a good idea to my mind. The idea is fairly well thought out too; by combining it with yearly elections in May it avoids ‘voter fatigue’. The involvment of the Electoral Commission in verification of signatures will allay those who fear corruption or fraud. More democracy is a good thing if thought out and implemented well.

Kudos to Ms Khan for backing this campaign here’s hoping it succeeds in its aims.

Comments Disabled To "Saira Khan demands more democracy"

#1 Comment By SajiniW On 4th September, 2006 @ 12:18 pm

Irritating as she is, Saira rarely backs a loser. I wish her more luck than I did Jimmy Goldsmith.

#2 Comment By Kismet Hardy On 4th September, 2006 @ 12:30 pm

Did you know democracy comes from the latin demi and the greek for autocracy?

Of course you didn’t because I just made that up

But I like it. I’m calling my new band Demi-cracy.

Ooh ooh, or even Demo-crazy.


That’s fucking amazing.

I’m happy about this

#3 Comment By Kismet Hardy On 4th September, 2006 @ 12:33 pm

Demo crazy


I’m patenting this


#4 Comment By Leon On 4th September, 2006 @ 12:34 pm

Kismet signs his approval? Wayhey! This looks like a winner for sure.:D

#5 Comment By Kismet Hardy On 4th September, 2006 @ 12:34 pm

Shine on you crazy demo

Ha ha ha ha

oh happy day

#6 Comment By Kismet Hardy On 4th September, 2006 @ 12:35 pm

Leon do you want to be in my band? It’s called DemoCrazy™

You can play guitar. Or any other instrument that I can’t play, which could be any of them.

We need groupies

#7 Comment By AsifB On 4th September, 2006 @ 12:40 pm

Leon - the reason Saira’s voice irritates is the rather laboured way in which she talked to people on the show (though less so since becoming famous). She seemed to assume that saying one syllable AT-A - TIME - would make people take her more seriously.

Citizens initiatives tend to lead to one extreme or another of legalise dope/expel outsider/ slash all taxes type of referendum. If it forces political parties to be more responsive it may be a good thing - but then so would Compulsory Voting provided it had a None of the Above feature - so if NOTA won, the losers would be prevented from standing for 6 months (or something)

#8 Comment By Kismet Hardy On 4th September, 2006 @ 12:43 pm

Who’s saira khan? Can she sing? We need a female singer

#9 Comment By AsifB On 4th September, 2006 @ 12:53 pm

no. 8 Kismet- you’ll be telling me you’ve never heard of Steve Irwin next - may he RIP

Muslims have plenty of female singers (mullahs permitting) - When in doubt, do what I do and consult Robert Plant - Om Kalsoun [6] http://www.guardian.co.uk/friday_review/story/0,,736611,00.html (14 June 2002)

” Plant stops to reflect on the dusky genius of the Egyptian singer Om Kalsoun. I admit that I have never heard of her. “She is the most played artist on the planet,” he informs me. “When she died in the 70s she had a bigger funeral procession than President Nasser. Get off a plane between Gibraltar and the other side of India and you will hear her within three minutes. It’s classical highbrow pop. The blues has a lot of poignancy, but her music is all about lost love and it has the poetry of The Rubaiyat of Omar Khyyam. In Egypt they call her the Lady.”

#10 Comment By Rakhee On 4th September, 2006 @ 12:54 pm

Kismet, you could invite Miss UK to be part of your band - not sure if she can sing but she’s piped up about muslims recently and we all know you love fit women. *pauses for thought* In fact, any women with a heartbeat…;)

#11 Comment By Kismet Hardy On 4th September, 2006 @ 1:00 pm

Ponce alert:

I have saira khan AND hamassa’s mobile numbers logged on my phone

It’s true, it’s true, ask sunny

it’s true

#12 Comment By Rakhee On 4th September, 2006 @ 1:22 pm

Oh my god. You’re one of those celebrity phone hackers aren’t you..??!!

[7] http://media.guardian.co.uk/site/story/0,,1842519,00.html

#13 Comment By Bert Preast On 4th September, 2006 @ 1:22 pm

Hmm. Sounds good, but a shame that you can only vote annually. Shame we can’t set something up using the internet, but I suppose you couldn’t be sure it wasn’t rigged without a hugely regulated internet and I don’t want that.

I expect this will get a lot of support from people thinking “yeah, we could’ve stopped the invasion of Iraq” but if you’re voting annually then most such foreign policy decisions can’t afford to wait.

#14 Comment By Leon On 4th September, 2006 @ 1:27 pm

I reckon this would get as much support from the right as the anti war lobby. Think Europe and you’ll see what I mean.

Regard FP, good point but this could in effect to force the decision to go to war to be voted on by MPs or enforce more adherence to the UN etc.

I’m sure there are plenty of reactionary types who might like this too (BNP; lets petition to stop immigration, HuT: lets petition to introduce Sharia law)…

#15 Comment By Amit On 4th September, 2006 @ 1:32 pm

Crickey, she’s everywhere at the moment…she was on bbc breaky this morning promoting her other new program about overcoming anger and stress! She’s obviously doing something right, more power to her!

#16 Comment By Leon On 4th September, 2006 @ 1:45 pm

Yeah I saw that too, hence my comment about trying to make a career on TV in the OP. She’s trying real hard to make a name for herself, not much wrong with that, problem is too much may turn people off.

#17 Comment By Robert On 4th September, 2006 @ 3:42 pm

Much as the current political system frustrates me, I feel bound to put its case here. Leon has already highlighted some of the pitfalls.

The direct democracy as advocated by Saira Khan looks attractive to us now, primarily because we feel rather disenfranchised by a government that has ignored our views.

However, what guarantee would we have that the items put before the public in referenda would not all be populist and isolationist? I worry that this wouldn’t give any more power to da people. Just more power to the newspapers. The ‘campaigns’ launched by the tabloids are nauseating, sanctimonius clap-trap already. Can you imagine how they would behave if there was a way to automatically trigger a referendum? The first vote would likely be something like “shall we execute terrorists?” which is not likely to make anyone feel more enfranchised.

#18 Comment By Sunny On 4th September, 2006 @ 3:52 pm

So what’s wrong with a few populist decisions? I think there is an element of looking down on people, assuming they’ll automatically make silly decisions or run silly campaigns. That may be the case but I think it might also be that people have a debate about issues close to them and exercise that vote.

I’d like to see what happens. I have faith in people. To a degree.

#19 Comment By Leon On 4th September, 2006 @ 3:54 pm

Indeed, another thing you could argue though is that these tabloid ‘campaigns’ are effective because people lack power in the political sphere.

#20 Comment By soru On 4th September, 2006 @ 4:19 pm

How is voting in a referendum power?

I would see it more as handing power to the current leader, which they then get to use against judges, journalists, or anyone else who opposes them.

Really not much different than the way opinion polls are used currently - after all, I think Blair has gone against opinion polls precisely once in his whole time in office.

#21 Comment By Leon On 5th September, 2006 @ 10:00 am

How is voting in a referendum power?

Did you not read the news piece linked to or view the Our Say website?

Article printed from Pickled Politics: http://www.pickledpolitics.com

URL to article: http://www.pickledpolitics.com/archives/759

URLs in this post:
[1] The Apprentice: http://www.bbc.co.uk/apprentice/
[2] Saira Khan: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Saira_Khan
[3] her latest venture: http://www.timesonline.co.uk/article/0,,6-2341669,00.html
[4] Our Say: http://our-say.org/
[5] BBC news: http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk_politics/5310288.stm
[6] http://www.guardian.co.uk/friday_review/story/0,,736611,00.html: http://www.guardian.co.uk/friday_review/story/0,,736611,00.html
[7] http://media.guardian.co.uk/site/story/0,,1842519,00.html: http://media.guardian.co.uk/site/story/0,,1842519,00.html