Single Idea 20558

[catalogued under 25. Society / D. Political Doctrines / 5. Democracy / d. Representative democracy]

Full Idea

Your representative owes you, not his industry only, but his judgement; and he betrays instead of serving you if he sacrifices it to your opinion

Gist of Idea

Your representative owes you his judgement, and betrays you if he gives your opinion instead


Edmund Burke (Address to the Voters of Bristol [1774]), quoted by Adam Swift - Political Philosophy (3rd ed)

Book Reference

Swift,Adam: 'Political Philosophy (3rd edn)' [Polity 2014], p.196

A Reaction

Nice rhetoric, but I'm not sure about the logic of it. Do I betray you if I give my stupid judgement rather than your wise one? Am I so arrogant as to think my judgement is always preferable? His audience was entirely of property owners.