A New Kind of Democracy

Zhwazi
Zhwazi's picture
Posts: 459
Joined: 2006-10-06
User is offlineOffline
A New Kind of Democracy

For the record, I object to democracy in all forms, believing it to be tyranny-by-majority. However I have a better idea about how it can be done. Inspiration for this thread comes from a speech given by Richard Ault.

Suppose we have three major parties and a 55%/30%/15% voter split. Let's call them Republican, Democrat, and Libertarian respectively. All the voters go and vote.

Under the current system, the Republicans get 100% of the control of the office in question, with the other two getting a total of 0% control.

How about a system where we might split that office into say, a council of 20. In that case, the council would have 11 Republicans, 6 Democrats, and 3 Libertarians. The votes would be totalled from all voters who the council will have power over, without dividing them into voting districts which go 100% in any one direction.

This would have a number of advanages.

1. Minority parties would still have some say in how they are governed, unlike the current system.
2. Totalling all votes would end the practice of gerrymandering.
3. Voters would have a more moderate selection of candidates.

Let me expand upon the third, it might seem like a nonsequitur.

Each party would get 20 potential candidates lined up for the office, and choose what order the candidates would be elected in.

The Republicans would know they have about half of the voters anyways. But if they put 20 Tom Delays on their lineup, they'd turn off moderate voters. They would put the Tom Delays, the crazy extremists, at the front of the line to make sure they get into power, but as they got further down the lineup, Republican voters might think "I'd rather have a moderate democrat than another Tom Delay on the council." Thus, the Republican party would put moderates on the lineup as well in an attempt to alienate fewer voters. And the Democrats would put the Clintons and Fienstiens on their front line, but after that they might put more moderate candidates to attract Republicans that aren't as crazy as Delay.

In that way, all the parties would be competing to bring the best candidates to the voters, giving them a better selection of candidates. Voters would have fewer problems with voting for the "lesser of two evils" because they know their party is going to have approximately as much power anyways and they aren't voting for political wingnuts. They can express dissatisfaction with their own party without imperiling losing the office 100% to someone worse.

Does anyone else here think this would be a better system than what we have now?


ShadowOfMan
atheist
ShadowOfMan's picture
Posts: 187
Joined: 2006-10-12
User is offlineOffline
100%! That way everyone's

100%! That way everyone's voice is heard to some degree. Plus a non-of-the-above blank. But the way you describe it, would you vote for your party or your favorite candidate? I guess primaries to determine the order?

A daughter of hope and fear, religion explains to Ignorance the nature of the unknowable. -Ambrose Bierce


Zhwazi
Zhwazi's picture
Posts: 459
Joined: 2006-10-06
User is offlineOffline
You would be voting for a

You would be voting for a party. Obviously it would be necessary to provide every party that can manage to put 20 people in a lineup for office a position on the ballot. And yes, primaries would be determining the order and the candidates.


Ivan_Ivanov
Ivan_Ivanov's picture
Posts: 126
Joined: 2006-09-10
User is offlineOffline
We have this very system in

We have this very system in Poland, it's not working very well.
There somewhere around 7 parties in the parliament, and any change proposed by any party is rejected by all the others.

Sure there are alliances and coalitions among parties, but they are fragile.

Voting for a party has it's problems to.
Say there's a guy you know running for office. He says, vote for me and I'll do X, Y and Z. X, Y and Z are ideas you like very much, so you vote for him. Sadly he's not the one with priority in the party so all the votes he got, go to the party's number 1 candidate, that doesn't necessarily like ideas X, Y and Z.

I'm not saying this is a bad system, it might work better in the States, just showing that it's not without it's problems.


Zhwazi
Zhwazi's picture
Posts: 459
Joined: 2006-10-06
User is offlineOffline
Is representation

Is representation proportional or do you just have 7 parties all represented equally?


Ivan_Ivanov
Ivan_Ivanov's picture
Posts: 126
Joined: 2006-09-10
User is offlineOffline
It's proportional.

It's proportional.


Zhwazi
Zhwazi's picture
Posts: 459
Joined: 2006-10-06
User is offlineOffline
Well if you say they can't

Well if you say they can't get anything done because nobody will let anything get done, that's an improvement in conditions over what we have now, that being a Republican president, senate, and house. How fast a group of "small government" republicans can grow the government by 1 trillion dollars is appalling.


Yellow_Number_Five
atheistRRS Core MemberScientist
Yellow_Number_Five's picture
Posts: 1390
Joined: 2006-02-12
User is offlineOffline
If the government cannot get

If the government cannot get anything done under such a system, at least they cannot fuck anything up so egregiously either.

I much prefer an inept government to an incompetent and misquided one with the means to push a catastro-fuck of an agenda through.

I am against religion because it teaches us to be satisfied with not understanding the world. - Richard Dawkins

Atheist Books, purchases on Amazon support the Rational Response Squad server.


Ivan_Ivanov
Ivan_Ivanov's picture
Posts: 126
Joined: 2006-09-10
User is offlineOffline
Zhwazi wrote:Well if you say

Zhwazi wrote:
Well if you say they can't get anything done because nobody will let anything get done, that's an improvement in conditions over what we have now, that being a Republican president, senate, and house. How fast a group of "small government" republicans can grow the government by 1 trillion dollars is appalling.

I understand.
Probably the best thing to do, would be changing the systems between our countries.
The States could use someone from within to question all the ideas, while Poland is in desperate need of change, which won't happen because we're too busy with petty fights.

Every system has it's ups and downs I guess.


Zhwazi
Zhwazi's picture
Posts: 459
Joined: 2006-10-06
User is offlineOffline
Yellow_Number_Five wrote:I

Yellow_Number_Five wrote:
I much prefer an inept government to an incompetent and misquided one with the means to push a catastro-fuck of an agenda through.

+1

If it's not working, it's working just fine.


Ivan_Ivanov
Ivan_Ivanov's picture
Posts: 126
Joined: 2006-09-10
User is offlineOffline
Yellow_Number_Five wrote:If

Yellow_Number_Five wrote:
If the government cannot get anything done under such a system, at least they cannot fuck anything up so egregiously either.

The problem is that, at the moment, everything is fucked up, and needs repairing.
The time is good for it, because our economic situation is quite nice, but instead of using it to make things better those bastards are just fighting eachother.

If nothing changes, when the shit finally hits the fan, it's gonna hit it hard.
Not that I'm worried - praise be to the European Union and open borders!


Zhwazi
Zhwazi's picture
Posts: 459
Joined: 2006-10-06
User is offlineOffline
It's government. Government

It's government. Government is always fucked up and needs repairing. There's nothing new about that.


Ivan_Ivanov
Ivan_Ivanov's picture
Posts: 126
Joined: 2006-09-10
User is offlineOffline
Ramen to that!

Ramen to that!


Yellow_Number_Five
atheistRRS Core MemberScientist
Yellow_Number_Five's picture
Posts: 1390
Joined: 2006-02-12
User is offlineOffline
Ivan_Ivanov

Ivan_Ivanov wrote:
Yellow_Number_Five wrote:
If the government cannot get anything done under such a system, at least they cannot fuck anything up so egregiously either.

The problem is that, at the moment, everything is fucked up, and needs repairing.
The time is good for it, because our economic situation is quite nice, but instead of using it to make things better those bastards are just fighting eachother.

If nothing changes, when the shit finally hits the fan, it's gonna hit it hard.
Not that I'm worried - praise be to the European Union and open borders!

Oh, I agree, wallowing is less than prime, especially when due to simple infighting. Still it is hard to imagine how such a system could make things worse - it favors the status quo; which isn't necessarily good depending on the status quo, but speaking as an American I'm sure you understand the setiment.

I do see how it would be crippling in critical matters and emergencies though. I would think such situations would be enough to polarize the populace in a particular direction though, but in a more measured fashion.

I am against religion because it teaches us to be satisfied with not understanding the world. - Richard Dawkins

Atheist Books, purchases on Amazon support the Rational Response Squad server.


BarkAtTheMoon
Rational VIP!
BarkAtTheMoon's picture
Posts: 85
Joined: 2006-02-22
User is offlineOffline
The main problem I would

The main problem I would personally have with such a system is that I rarely vote along any party line. There are Democrats I would vote for, just as there are Republicans and other party candidates that I would vote for. And on the contrary there are Democrats, Republicans, and other party candidates that I would rather vote for a trained monkey than have them win an office. My big problem with the "lesser of two evils" thing is that both of the major parties piss me off, and none of them are particularly worried about doing things to help their constituency and the country at large. As I've said before, anyone who's willing to spend millions of dollars to win a 4-year, $100,000 position cannot, by definition, be trusted.

So remember, when you're feeling very small and insecure,
How amazingly unlikely is your birth;
And pray that there's intelligent life somewhere out in space,
'Cause there's bugger all down here on Earth!
- Eric Idle, from The Galaxy Song


Zhwazi
Zhwazi's picture
Posts: 459
Joined: 2006-10-06
User is offlineOffline
I already addressed that.

I already addressed that. The parties would put the moderates in as far as they expect to go, so that under my 55/30/15 split, the Republican candidates, after like the 6th in the lineup, would have to be more and more moderate to get the moderates' votes.

You could also vote Libertarian, which is what I recommend.


BarkAtTheMoon
Rational VIP!
BarkAtTheMoon's picture
Posts: 85
Joined: 2006-02-22
User is offlineOffline
Zhwazi wrote:I already

Zhwazi wrote:
I already addressed that. The parties would put the moderates in as far as they expect to go, so that under my 55/30/15 split, the Republican candidates, after like the 6th in the lineup, would have to be more and more moderate to get the moderates' votes.

You could also vote Libertarian, which is what I recommend.


I get that, I just don't think it would work for me personally. I probably would end up voting Libertarian, although I don't particularly agree with all of their ideas. My problem with this is that I'd almost rather not vote at all than to have to choose an entire party, especially when 1,2,3 in the party lineups would be DeLay, Santorum, & Bush or Kerry, Hillary, & Obama even with the offset of a few token moderates.

And besides, none of this would particularly work in the States unless all the States were eliminated, and the nation was regrouped into more homogenous sections. Otherwise, this system would effectively eliminate small states, such as mine, from having any say on the national level. My state only has one Rep in the House as is and is a prime example of the reason why the Senate has even representation from each state. Your system would greatly favor more populous states with nationally known candidates so that big name, big money party favorites would make the list, while lesser known, small state rural candidates that might be better for the job or better for their own state/region wouldn't have a chance.

Basically, I just prefer voting on an individual person's views rather than choosing a party. That way I can pick and choose specific candidates regardless of party whose views more closely follow my own. Of course, I'm not saying this idea wouldn't work, I just don't think it's for me and I don't think it would work in the US without completely revamping the entire structure of the government (not that that's not a bad idea) and the whole idea of states rights.

So remember, when you're feeling very small and insecure,
How amazingly unlikely is your birth;
And pray that there's intelligent life somewhere out in space,
'Cause there's bugger all down here on Earth!
- Eric Idle, from The Galaxy Song


Asshat
Theist
Asshat's picture
Posts: 6
Joined: 2006-04-16
User is offlineOffline
fg

fg


qbg
Posts: 298
Joined: 2006-11-22
User is offlineOffline
What would you have instead

What would you have instead of a form of democracy?

If your answer is a "voting with you wallet" type answer, then you would have tyranny by the minority as long as there is income inequality.

What is wrong with communities self-managing through direct democracy?

By trying to eliminate tyranny by the majority, you may end up with the minority stopping the majority from trying to make society freer.

"What right have you to condemn a murderer if you assume him necessary to "God's plan"? What logic can command the return of stolen property, or the branding of a thief, if the Almighty decreed it?"
-- The Economic Tendency of Freethought


Zhwazi
Zhwazi's picture
Posts: 459
Joined: 2006-10-06
User is offlineOffline
qbg wrote: If your answer

qbg wrote:

If your answer is a "voting with you wallet" type answer, then you would have tyranny by the minority as long as there is income inequality.

"Voting with your wallet" isn't voting really. When you vote, you have two republicans appointing a republican to rule over a democrat. When you spend money, you're not forcing anyone else to buy what you're buying, you're just buying it for yourself. The rich spending money doesn't infringe on the ability of everyone else to spend money. There's nothing tyrannical about market operations. Markets allow everyone to get what they want, government and democracy is a geographic one-size-fits-all, and it's a well demonstrated fact that one size does not fit all.