John Lotherington audits the election campaign to find how far discussion about future generations and sustainable development could be heard above the electoral din. Future generations were important in the election if all that mattered was the national debt. The crucial, broader issues of sustainable development were largely side-lined, buried in unread manifestos. Some issues, like support for climate change, were agreed in a cross-party pact, with the perverse effect of removing it from debate and from the vital, participatory, consciousness-raising weeks of an election campaign.
We need to work out how better to represent the long-term and the voices of future generations in our constitutions, our institutions, our democratic practices and our elections. Maybe then they can be heard above the din?