Most politicians in most democratic countries agree on most things. Just look at how rare it is for a new government to undo legislation passed by the previous administration. Despite all the political posturing, the real debates are not about differences in manifesto promises (often overtaken anyway by global events), but about who has the most competent and experienced leadership team. Most energy in politics today is about single issues such as Iraq, genetically modified food, stem cell research or global warming. Politicians will only have a chance of recovering respect if they start keeping to the truth which is that consensus rules and the opposition are on the whole sensible people with decent policies. Future of political parties, capitalism, socialism, middle ground, third way, liberal democrats, conservatives, labour, conservative party, green party, republicans, democrats, presidential election, America. Parliament and democracy. Comment by Dr Patrick Dixon, futurist, leading authority on global trends and conference speaker.