There is often much comment in Gibraltar that in the GSD we have the better of two bad choices for government. The theory goes why elect the GSLP/Libs (the only alternative under the present electoral system), if the GSD has done overall much better than the GSLP/Libs ever did or could do. In this way the GSD is forgiven its ever increasing failings and failures and electors caste their votes in favour of the GSD.
This argument has historically justified dictatorship, totalitarianism and consequently evil. Many a regime that has committed atrocities, not least the Franco regime in Spain, has had their existence justified on such opportunistic, expedient and cowardly argument. It is a fundamentally flawed argument born of lazy indifference and usually made by those benefiting financially from the system that it seeks to justify and support. A system must not be justified or forgiven because it delivers second best.
It is an argument that favours mediocrity. If there are failings and failures the demand should be for reform of the system. Reform that will deliver excellence by correcting that which is wrong. The reform that is crying out to be made in Gibraltar is a reform to the electoral system such as will deliver two things. First encouragement for more people to stand for election and give the electorate a greater choice. Secondly a backbench to counteract the power of the executive.
If evil and wrongdoing is to be avoided there is a need to separate the executive and the legislature. This will allow the rule of law to operate as it should. The executive can only act under powers given to it in laws passed by the legislature. This allows the legislature to act as an overseer of the executive and prevent what can be a quick descent into rule by virtual diktat. A fanciful thought? It has happened in what were previously British colonies, not least in Malta under Mintoff and not so long ago. Thankfully the ultimate check and balance in a democratic system, elections, usually make any such descent short lived but prevention is invariably better than cure.