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Inverse-Capital Vote-Weighting

A possibly fair way for the masses to balance the oligarchs.
  [vote for,

While it is often said that so-and-so is penniless, it is generally true that most people own something, even if it is just the clothes being worn. Logically, it would be possible for everyone to have and maintain a list of owned stuff, generically called "capital".

Now consider inflation which can make it difficult to compare capital at different times in history. Logically, the way to do it is to compare the total capital of the very wealthy to the total capital of the very poor. We now consider doing that on a logarithmic scale.

We can now define a group of folks that have 1 unit of capital, and another group that has 10 units of capital, and another group that has 100 units of capital, and so on, such that the very wealthiest might have a billion times as much capital as the very poorest. Inflation cannot seriously affect this type of comparison, because inflation generally affects most types of capital fairly equally.

Now for the politics. Imagine everyone potentially having 10 votes each to cast, when some particular thing is put up to a nationwide referendum. However, since this Idea is about Inverse-Capital Vote-Weighting, only the very poorest get 10 votes each. Those with 10 times the capital get 9 votes each; those with 100 times the capital get 8 votes each, and so on, such that those with a billion times the capital only get 1 vote each, to apply to the referendum.

Should it happen that someone has 10 billion times the capital of the poorest person, then we simply adjust things so that almost everyone gets one extra vote (the poorest get 11 votes each and the richest get 1 vote each).

Should it happen that someone has 100 billion times the capital of the poorest person, then we simply adjust things so that almost everyone gets another extra vote (the poorest get 12 votes each and the richest get 1 vote each).

And so on. In the USA at the time of this writing there is an important vote regarding "Net Neutrality" which has been badly influenced by the oligarchs, for their own benefit and to the detriment of the masses. I'm pretty sure such a vote would never yield such unfairness if the poor could influence things as well as the rich.

Vernon, Dec 09 2017

A Solution to Lobbying A_20Solution_20to_20Lobbying
[Skewed, Dec 10 2017]


       Given that..   

       1. wealth is so heavily weighted in society in the first place (the old 8% have 90% of the wealth bit, or whatever it was (or is) right now (it may have shifted since I read it, or not been accurate when I did, or I may have remembered it wrong) ... but none of that really matters, the point is it's a really big disparity).   

       2. democracy already follows the 1 person 1 vote rule.   

       The idea would seem defunct as the poor already outvote the wealthy, a lot.   

       This would accentuate the existing voting balance in favor of the poor even more though.
Skewed, Dec 09 2017

       [Skewed], if what you wrote was correct, then the oligarchs in the USA would not have the political power they are proven to have. There is a classic version of the "golden rule" that goes, "he who has the gold makes the rules", and every time something happens that benefits the wealthy over the poor, the rule-variant gains evidence of validity. This Idea is intended to defeat that phenomenon.
Vernon, Dec 09 2017

       The pro Net Neutrality campaign is a perfect example of ignorant, socialist thinking fueled by one set of oligarchs versus another. Or did you think that the people running Netflix or Facebook or Google are less oligarchy than the people running Comcast or Cablevision? Check out some stock charts. Haven't noticed the owner's of Comcast building spaceships to go to Mars -- but the owner of Amazon is.   

       In reality, while the benefits of the Internet may have taken longer to develop, half the problems of the Internet, from spam to trolling to identity theft, would never have even occurred if you had to pay per byte.   

       Starting to treat it as a necessary utility now is a sure way to cement the status quo -- as already evidenced by the deterioration in Quality of Service of the telecom network over the last few years. Who is going invest billions for the next gen system when you cannot guarantee that you will make money because you have a better system.   

       As Skewed points out, wealth compensates, in some small way, versus the tyranny of the unwealthy majority. The last 3 Presidential elections were clearly not decided by money.   

       The net neutrality decision is being made not because of corporate lobbying, but because the chief commissioner has a strong, Ayn Randian belief in continuing to develop the net -- he had this belief before current Net Neutrality was shoved down industry's throat, and he maintains it now, and elections have consequences.
theircompetitor, Dec 09 2017

       [theircompetitor], you are ignoring the fact that the major internet service providers are already profitable. That means they already have the means to put funds into new technologies. Making greater profits *might* allow them to do it faster, but what actually happens is, they just direct most of the extra profits into the pockets of the shareholders. "Trickle-down" really means, "you get a trickle and I get all the rest".
Vernon, Dec 09 2017

       // if what you wrote was correct //   

       It is.   

       Let me restate it (different words might illustrate my point better).   

       1. There are a lot more poor (or low paid) people than rich people ... true.   

       2. In (our current) democracy we get one vote each regardless of wealth ... also true.   

       If then (as you assert) there appears to be a problem whereby the rich somehow circumvent the democratic system to disproportionately effect politics it would seem unlikely that the problem lies in the number of votes available to the poor as a class.   

       If the rich are successfully circumventing their lower number of votes to get their way then giving the poor more (votes) won't help will it, you're just giving them more of something that has already been demonstrated to be irrelevant.   

       You may need to reconsider what the perceived problem actually is before trying to fix it.
Skewed, Dec 09 2017

       [Skewed], the current system in the USA involves representatives placed in-between the voters and the rules that are made. The real problem is that the number of representatives (including Senators) is fixed, while population grows, making it more difficult for an individual voice to get the attention of a representative. However, since it is well known that "money talks", that's why the oligarchs have so much influence.   

       At the individual-state level (especially in California) there is a trend toward getting the public more directly involved in specifying the rules (via referendums). To the extent that this can be reliably workable (can't neglect chance of voting systems getting hacked), more states might follow, and in the end the Federal system might get changed, too. We are certainly going to need some sort of change for the long run (see last part of this anno).   

       But you can bet the oligarchs are not going to let that happen without a lot of legal fighting. So it is really a good thing that the Constitution allows citizens to bypass their own state legislatures with respect to Constitutional Amendments....   

       This Idea cannot be inserted into an existing system; it needs to be part of a new system, one intended to prevent oligarchs from controlling a country. Which is what happened to ancient Rome, leading to its downfall.
Vernon, Dec 09 2017

       What does are already profitable mean? Money seeks a higher return commensurate with the risk taken.   

       Shareholders are taking a risk as well.   

       Any doubt in your mind that Google is already profitable. Look at the list of companies supporting net neutrality and their combined worth.   

       I'm pointing out that the premise, that it's the masses against the oligarchs, is fundamentally flawed. Is simply one set of beneficiaries versus another. You're likely to pay more for content over time regardless at least until AI can produce content. And you actually fix a lot of distortions by charging for the percentage of pipe used
theircompetitor, Dec 09 2017

       [theircompetitor], I picked the net neutrality thing as one example where the oligarchs are getting their way in spite of the negative effects on the rest of the population. It is by far not the only way oligarchs have done that, and this Idea is about preventing it. Money may be power, but that doesn't mean it should also be votes.
Vernon, Dec 09 2017

       // the current system in the USA involves representatives placed in-between the voters and the rules that are made //   

       Pretty much as it is here (your parliamentary representative is your member of parliament).   

       So (unless I'm misunderstanding you) you're issue is essentially lobbying by rich contributors yes?   

       It sounds like what you really want might be a more direct involvement (of voters), direct referendums perhaps, to hamstring the ability of wealthy "contributors" to influence your representatives decisions with blandishments of money (by taking those decisions away from them).   

       Might that have the effect you want without weighing of voting rights in favor of the lower paid?   

       It would be a lot tidier & is certainly a (reasonably cheap) possibility these days (with computers & the internet), of course that probably ends up with Russia running the US (through online voting) if recent allegations are anything to go by.   

       Or ... just limit party donations to a very small amount (index linked to the lower incomes) & ban all contributions from anyone (or thing) that doesn't have the right to vote (so, limiting it to real people, no NGO, corporate or foreign donations), & make any contributions exceeding that amount & (professional) lobbying both criminal offences with a penalty of a (very) long jail term & confiscation of all assets if caught.
Skewed, Dec 09 2017

       What we want are shorter elections.
RayfordSteele, Dec 09 2017

       Yes, I have that //Elections lasting longer than 4 hours// thing somewhere.
theircompetitor, Dec 09 2017

       dOES tHIS hELP?
pertinax, Dec 09 2017

       // dOES tHIS hELP? //   

       I really don't think it does.   

       If I'm not mistaken what Vernon is trying to address is the influence of the rich on political decisions (through party donations & lobbying)?   

       Which can be done as easily after your representative has been elected as it can before & has nothing to do with votes anyway.   

       So adjusting voting powers really is an irrelevant red herring, it won't have any effect on that at all.
Skewed, Dec 10 2017


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