Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
h a l f b a k e r y
I like this idea, only I think it should be run by the government.

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An alternative to elections.
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(+3, -5)
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This is an elegant solution to the realm of politics. Instead of ridiculous elections and career politicians, let's award people a political office based on terms of their age.

As soon as a person reaches retirement age, which is currently 65, but I expect will rise as health care improves, he is given a position in local governance. It may be as simple as a neighborhood council, whatever.

As time goes by, the Geriocrats work their way up from local government all the way up to the federal level. Each geriocrat will have spent at least 2 years at the local level 2 at state level, then 2 in house and 2 in senate before being eligible for the presidency, meaning all presidents henceforth will be at least 73 years old. Those with more living decendants(on good terms with them) will be promoted faster, to increase enfranchisement of the young.

Young people's "veto" upon the actions of the old will be competency tests, to weed out the senile members. The Geriocrats can be subjected to one aptitude test per month, and have as many weeded out as test results dictate, but at least one every month. The president must score in the top 25% percentile of the senate scores, or a new president is chosen from the senate. The senate seats vacated are filled by house congressmen, the vacated house seats are filled by people from state senates, or governers, and so on down the line. These aptitude tests will force politicians to keep up-to-date with technology as well as current events.

Thusly, we squeeze a little more utility out of senior citizens before they draw social security checks, and avoid a lot of the influence buying in election-based politics. Moreover, sex scandals would cease, and women would gain much greater representation in government.

Now, you might think that this will mean that AARP will become even more powerful than ever, but really, this won't be so painful. After all, most of the seniors will have children, grandchildren, and such, so will keep the interests of the younger generation in mind. Most families will have at least some representation in government at all times. Also, when a senior's medications become to costly relative to their position attained, they are passed over for promotion within the system, or, in dire cases, retired. This will keep them from unduly upping to health care costs.

Another excellent advantage to the system is the fact that federal politicians will be horizontally educated-- all of them will have had to dabble in politics at the local and state levels before moving on to a federal position-- this will keep them sympathetic to local needs.

One final problem which may need to be addressed is the black life expectancy problem-- that is, blacks are reputed to have a much lower life expectancy than whites. The system will account for this disparity, and lower the retirement age for blacks accordingly, so that they are proportionally represented. This will keep them from being disenfranchised.

There may be other tweaks to the system which may be necessary, but that's the basic outline. While every political system has it's drawbacks, I believe this system certainly has more merit than the governments most countries are stuck with, and in some ways, outperforms even the best democracies.

Madai, Jan 09 2005

Ahem http://dictionary.r...arch?q=gerontocracy
The word you're looking for is "gerontocracy." [DrCurry, Jan 09 2005]


       I vote for a Ben & Geriocracy. Two scoops in every pot.
robinism, Jan 09 2005

       Actually, this would be a gerontocracy (see link). Gerontocratic tyrannies are currently failing in Cuba and Zimbabwe, and I am forced to serve up a fishbone.   

       Democratic or otherwise, we need young and vigorous leaders.
DrCurry, Jan 09 2005

       I beg to differ, Dr Curry. Fidel might be old now, but the man has been in power for 40 years. He was... how do you put it? Ah yes... Young and Vigorous back when he was facing down Kennedy.   

       And zimbabwe? Mugabe has been in power since 1987, which would make him a young young 63 at time of coming to power. He did not assume power on the basis of age.   

       As for gerontocracy, well, that word already exists. It's no fun using a word that already exists! For me, Going Gerio instead or Geronto conjures up different connotations... Gerio sounds weaker than Gerento, and that's kind of what I'm going for.   

       Also, you listed two dictatorships. The aim of my governing system is to have a rapid succession of very old people in the highest office. I doubt any would last beyond eight years, even without term limits.
Madai, Jan 09 2005

       Isn't this how the Catholic Church works? Is that a third dictatorship??? (Actual question. It's a theocracy, but kind of a warm and fuzzy dictatorship because I don't think anyone can over rule the Pope.)The problem I see is that young assistants would run the govenment thru the older leaders who are likely to be loosing it a bit at the end. This has happened several times in the history of the Holly C.
MisterQED, Oct 23 2007

       <wonders what a 'Holly C.' is and if it has anything to do with Christmas>   

       //This is an elegant solution to the realm of politics.//   

       impossible. bone.
k_sra, Oct 23 2007

       Who makes the test that ultimately dertermine who has power? Isn't there a huge potential for corruption if the test-makers are not elected democratically?
kinemojo, Oct 23 2007

       I am down with aptitude tests for presidents and senate. But I really don't like old people though. I would much rather just have intelligent leaders and not so many puppets.
rascalraidex, Oct 23 2007


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