6.8.3 The Freedom to Influence Political Governance

(This is a current page, from the Patterns of Power Edition 3 book contents.  An archived copy of this page is held at https://www.patternsofpower.org/edition03/683a.htm)

People need to be able to communicate their wishes and concerns to those in power, if governance is to benefit, rather than enslave, the population.  The following arguments are relevant:

  • There are benefits to both the government and the people in allowing such communication (
  • Freedom of speech is needed so that people can express themselves without fear of reprisal (
  • There are several mechanisms for suppressing free speech (, that politicians might resort to for fear of opposition – but these reduce political legitimacy (

Politicians risk becoming unacceptable to the populations that they serve if they cannot hear any criticism.



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