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politocracy

a progression for democracy that solves some of the current issues
 
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Churchill said something along the lines of "Democracy is the worst form of government... except all the others that have been tried", which is a pretty apt way of putting it. It's not perfect, but it beats most alternatives. Even Marx's socio-political theory that capitalism (the core of our democracies) should evolve have at least a little weight.

Democracy has a lot going for it, but its major flaw is that it relies, heavily, on people, at every level. People happen to be highly corruptible, permeable and manipulative. Even when politicians truly believe in their principles, they simply have to make concessions and compromises to get half of what they want, done.

So I suggest a model of government entitled 'politocracy'.

In short;

A body of experts (academics, business leaders, people of experience, etc) sit on a committee.

A problem is presented to the committee. (eg, the economy)

The committee spends X time (X would be a time, decided as reasonable to solve the issue, determined and publicized on day 1 of problem dissection) discussing various solutions to the problem.

At the end of period X, the committee publicizes 3 solutions (where possible), in both short and long form. Short would be 'raise taxes, increase government spending'. Long would be 'raise taxes across all tax regions, increase spending on these programs....etc, etc')

The electorate would have a set period of time (say, a week? a month?) to vote on this policy.

After the voting period, the policy with most votes would be made law and policy.

Of course, a thousand minutae would need to be ironed out (which I can probably give a half-decent solution to, as I've thought about it quite a bit).

I also consider whether the electorate should be 'anyone over 18 who isn't a felon and is of sound mind' or something more restricted. I believe in freedom and liberty, not anarchy. There are thousands more 17 years olds that should be allowed to vote than there are racist thugs. The criteria for voting should be something less arbitrary than age, in my opinion. Besides the point I guess.

Whilst there would still be avenues for corruption, these could be controlled a little more as the people really would hold their own destines, for good or for bad.

Euryon, Apr 21 2011

public advisory vote Public_20Advisory_20Vote
regarding 'accountability tracking' [Euryon, Apr 22 2011]

[link]






       2 points/queries:
i) How is the make-up of the committee decided??
ii) Isn't this basically 'direct democracy'? (i.e. government by referenda / plebicite)
Jinbish, Apr 21 2011
  

       I think politicians on committees should have to take tests on their subject matter. A meritocracy of some sort, which is what this reminds me of.   

       Let's not forget, though, that GM used to design cars by committee.
RayfordSteele, Apr 21 2011
  

       How are you defining 'politocracy'? It's literal meaning would be close to 'citizen power' or 'city-state power'. I think it also should be spelled 'politicracy'; any Grecians here?
spidermother, Apr 22 2011
  

       [jinbish] i) i would expect the committee's make up follow some sort meritocracy. in my opinion, a minister for defence should have some sort of qualification (preferably a combination of experience and academic) as opposed to simply filling a seat (as often happens in modern cabinets).   

       the committee would be made up of departmental heads/spokespeople, who would have a department assigned to their role (ie, the department of internal security, the department of agriculture, etc, similar to current regime). the department head would be elected from amongst the department, and the department members would be made up of people with a quantitative and qualitative expertise in their department. the 'head' would likely be chosen from those most diplomatically able (or perhaps, each member must serve a 'term' or semester on the committee?)   

       If a person qualifies to be part of a department (say, a doctorate or 20 years in the business as a starting benchmark?) they could essentially apply for a position in a department, if one is available. Perhaps a 4 year term in a department, with some sort of accountability tracking (theres another idea ive read that might fit this bill, ill link it afterwards...), and whoever has the lowest policy success is kicked out (but may re-apply if not 'fired' for some legal reason!).   

       The departments would be run, therefore, with an application and verification process, not dissimilar to modern business HR procedures, and each member would potentially run in the committee for a fixed term.   

       ii) It is, I suppose, very similar to direct democracy, because it is (the ancient greek version at least) at least an inspiration. its how I feel democracy should be, especially when modern politicking (particularly in the US) is more about cult of personality than manifesto, i would highlight some differences though;   

       * the electorate/constituency would be made up of 'people of intelligence', that would not be determined by age, race, sex, welath or any other measure. if you possessed the correct citizenship (which I would not give until a measure of service [not necessarily military, i might add] had been performed) and could pass a standardized test (lets say equivalent to passing high school with good to excellent grades), you could vote. the particulars of this would need to be determined and heavily analyzed to avoid cultural bias, unfair discrimination, and so on; but as a starting point, thats what it is.   

       * the committee would be asked to provide 3 (where possible) solutions to a problem; the two extremes and a moderate version. a system could also be incorporated that if the vote was close, or not enough majority was given to a choice, modifications could take place (time permitting) to refine.   

       * the tidal progress of technology (read: the interet) could and should greatly influence the ballot system itself, helping to subsidize apathy, and reduce inaccuracy and fraud. aside from voting systems, the implementation of software to run simulations and perhaps even make logic based suggestions (the magi from Evangelion, anyone?) should be introduced, as it becomes safe and available.   

       * the committee, as mentioned by [RayfordSteele], ought to be meritocratic in formation (as I mentioned myself above) and not based on birth, geographic constituency, or any other political catagory other than merit (however that was decided).   

       * citizen voting could even be mandatory to a degree (ie, failing to participate in x amount of votes could result in a slightly higher tax bracket? voting could be made on the clock at work (with a 30 minute limit))   

       * the committee itself should not have a political angle or agenda. each member should approach an issue from his or her's particular specialty if relevant, or abstein if no relevance can be attributed.
Euryon, Apr 22 2011
  

       [spidermother] conjugating it from 'politeia' (policy) and 'kratos' (rule) - so its, i suppose, rule from policy. its been a long, long time since i took latin, and i have no ancient greek, so if i conjugated incorrectly, my apologies. if it ought be politicracy, then so be it.   

       defining it as 'rule that comes from policy', as democracy would be 'rule that comes from the people'.
Euryon, Apr 22 2011
  

       By the way, welcome to the halfbakery.
RayfordSteele, Apr 22 2011
  

       Technically, [Euryon], I think politeia is "polity" (almost any political system or constitution, or a community having such a system), rather than "policy" (a plan for doing something with public resources).   

       Better-known uses of the word in the ancient sources include "Athenaion Politeia" and "Lakedaimonion Politeia", works describing the constitutions of Athens and Sparta.   

       Regarding your idea, your committee sounds like what is known in ancient political discourse as "probouleutic", if I remember rightly. It has been done, up to a point, but I forget exactly where and how.
pertinax, Apr 23 2011
  

       ... oh, and welcome to the polity of the hemi-mageiroi.
pertinax, Apr 24 2011
  

       One man's "body of experts" is another man's "gang of miscreants."
AntiQuark, Apr 25 2011
  
      
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