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Is Belgium a democracy? Bernd 11/16/2019 (Sat) 21:22:55 [Preview] No. 32292
Belgium has a pretty complex structure. In fact it's made up of at least two democracies, a Dutch speaking and a French speaking part. 4 democracies if you count Brussels and the German speaking part. (pic1)

Why consider them seperate democracies, instead of just two subsets/states of a federal state? Well for instance you can't vote for Walloon (French speaking) political parties in Flanders (the Dutch speaking part) and vice versa. They also have different media, public opinion, etc ... Flanders is usually conservative and right wing, while Wallonia is usually progressive and left wing.

This results in some moral quandaries about democracy and representation. For instance, is a Belgian national government democratic/representative if it doesn't have a majority in both sub-democracies? There is an unwritten rule that a government should have a majority in both parts of the country, but it's by no way a legal obligation. As a result the two past governments didn't have a majority in Flanders and Wallonia respectively, which led to a lot of dissatisfaction in the regions.

There is another matter that complicates things. Flanders has a majority of the population, but Walloon votes weigh more in elections. If it was truly representative Flanders could in theory just dominate Wallonia. Hence a Walloon vote is 'worth more'. There are more seats to be gained by Walloon parties per head of the population. (pic2)

Let me illustrate this with a concrete example of the past week or so. We don't have a government atm but parliament did some legislation on extending the term for abortion on its own initiative. The measure had a majority in the national parliament, a very large majority in Wallonia, but a minority in Flanders. (pic3&4)

Is this democratic? Please discuss

Bernd 11/16/2019 (Sat) 21:27:59 [Preview] No.32294 del
aren't there minimum amounts of lingual representation needed in the federal government?

Bernd 11/16/2019 (Sat) 21:37:59 [Preview] No.32295 del
there has to be at least one party from each language group
also by convention there are an equal number of ministers from each language group, regardless of the size of the parties from said group

Bernd 11/17/2019 (Sun) 12:50:39 [Preview] No.32337 del
It seems democratic, but democracies are not always the best thing around, sometimes not even decent.

Bernd 11/17/2019 (Sun) 13:01:28 [Preview] No.32341 del
Well, would it be democratic if the weight of votes wouldn't be balanced out and Flanders would just "overvote" anything?
Anyway it's democratic since all the voters keep using it as if it was. Legitimacy comes from the people, they act as if it was legit, so it is.
To be honest Belgium is among the countries I know morsels. One mystery is: why doesn't just dissolve herself and the parts would go on their separate ways? What need, what force holds the country together?

Bernd 11/17/2019 (Sun) 13:02:18 [Preview] No.32343 del
(146.03 KB 500x359 peeps-of-belgium.jpg)

Bernd 11/17/2019 (Sun) 14:15:07 [Preview] No.32351 del
If Flanders was still Protestant, then they'd actually fight the Walloons.

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