Principia Discordia

Principia Discordia => Aneristic Illusions => Topic started by: Captain Utopia on July 21, 2010, 02:58:13 pm

Title: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 21, 2010, 02:58:13 pm
Sounds like a pie-in-the-sky dream with no pragmatic way to get there?  State your concerns and ask your questions here and we'll see if we can find some answers.

Summary:

The basic concept is quite simple - use information technology to provide an efficient and powerful mechanism to democratically influence the direction a group takes on any or all issues which face that group.

A group may be anything from a chess club, a city to a nation state.

The medium of participation would be the web-browser, such that you could access the service using anything which can run a browser - e.g. a desktop pc, a netbook, or a mobile phone.  This does exclude some like the computer illiterate and those without a personal internet connect, but put bluntly - this is not a problem we can fully hope to address until we have a working system which is capable of legislating provisions to correct for this.

That's it.  As an umbrella-term it covers a wide variety of implementations and participation models from simple direct democracy to roll-off voting.  So I'll propose a few ideas which I think show most promise.


Design Philosophy:

  Simply, to maximise participation and minimise elitism.  If you look at one of the most famous examples of collaborative models - the wikipedia, two issues immediately spring to mind: it's not 100% accurate; and it has fostered a tribe of wikipedians who jealously control editing and administrative rights.

  It's not completely accurate because it has such an open participation method which makes it vulnerable to laymen mistakes and intentional sabotage.  This is a given.  Both of these factors will be an issue in any system of E-Democracy, you can't design against it, and you certainly can't design as if it's not a problem.  But you can design such that you have methods to recognise and neutralise these effects.

  The wikipedia answer is to have a tightly controlled admin tribe who scour the plains of their respective territories, looking for anything out of the ordinary.  It works quite well to a point, but it is not scalable.  In theory I guess it is infinitely recursive.  The Anime Tzar could delegate authority out to new editors who have specialised knowledge of individual series or characters, and those editors could delegate out authority to new editors who have the most knowledge of specific periods, and so on.

  Instead it turns into a territorial power grab and rather than including new detailed content, reasons are quickly found (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Overcategorization) to exclude and delete knowledge.

  Another famous open collaborative model, Linux, relies on a benevolent dictator.. and I'm not going to waste any words explaining why that isn't a good example to follow.

  I'll go into more detail with regards how to defend against vandalism in the topics below, but in a nutshell - if more energy is put into breaking it, than is put into making it work, then it will fail.  It is, after all, a democratic system.
  

Decision Making:

  I'm going to use the following terms.  There may be better terms, if so I'll edit this to substitute them in:

  Anyone can add their own proposals in the forms above.  If an attempt is made by the person framing the bundle to include unrelated provisions, then by virtue of the fact that anyone can participate, the majority is not subjected to a choice limited to two undesirable options.  Bundles can be copied and those copies modified in order to frame a solution which satisfies the majority.

  This is a move away from monolithic packages such as the Reform initiatives which have successfully tied up the US Government over the last few years.  Rather than allocating months at a time to discuss and fillibuster over 5% of partisan differences, the 95% which is agreeable to most parties can be ratified and implemented right away.

  We're talking about a system that would be impossible to implement without our current state of communication technology.  There would be no way to keep track of all of the stakeholders positions on a large number of a small issues.

  Furthermore - how do we expect an individual to participate in a system of governance which may require any number of smaller-issue votes per day?


Discussion and Communication:

We will need to develop a new method of communication.  A single forum could not scale to allow the inhabitants of a city to have their say and participate equally.  It would be even more useless for a state or country.

So how to you approach a meritocracy and help ensure that good ideas don't get buried?  A participant with only one good idea in their life shouldn't have to network and schmooze their way into some elite club before they gain access to the pulpit.  But it remains somewhat paradoxical that while the experts in that field may recognise the unique benefit to that idea, they would never see it unless it was first promoted by a much larger group of non-experts who would only note that it ran contrary to conventional wisdom.

I think the answer lies in specialisation and social networks.  I might not know much about environmental issues, but my friend Jane does, so I just proxy my vote on issues with an environmental tag, to her.  Now if something attracts my attention, like the Gulf Oil spill, I might have a strong opinion on it, and as such I should be able to override that default, or take back full control whenever I want.  In a group of acquaintances, there is usually one person who may not be a subject-matter expert, but who cares more about that given subject than you do or is just more informed.

The choices given to the individual at this point is to have no say at all, spend time placing votes on all sorts of issues, or to empower a friend, who just may return the favour.  In turn, this friend may vote directly on the issues, or they may in turn proxy their collected votes out to a particular leader they support.  It'd look a little like this:

(http://zelea.com/project/votorola/d/theory/cascade-60.png)

Now your friends may advertise which specialisations they are interested in, and as such it'd be quite easy to get as detailed as you wish, and in the end your control-panel may look something like this:

  Proxied Votes:

  [Environment] - Jane
  [Environment/Gulf Oil Spill] - Rod Stewart
  [R&D/Biology] - Kai
  [Civil Rights/Sexual Equality:Rhode Island] - Dimo

So the graphs at this point start becoming multi-dimensionally incomprehensible, especially as a single issue may overlap multiple specialisations, and if so you have to ensure that an individual gives fractional votes to each proxy. The implementation details get a bit ugly.


Anonymity:
  
  Participants would do so under their legal names, and their actions and votes would be recorded and made part of the public record.

  I'm not particularly happy with this.  But it is a balance of risks.

  Public votes will ensure that tallies can be independently verified, and that no votes can be stolen by a trusted authority.  I think ensuring this is more important than the risk that peer pressure or intimidation will be used to coerce individuals into voting in a particular way.  Any organised attempt at coercion will find itself vulnerable to a single whistle-blower - these issues would generate indignation and publicity - so immediate protections and consequences could be brought to bear against the offenders.

  Peer-pressure looks at first glance like it may be a greater threat to the integrity of the vote, but since most people are members of more than one social circle then I expect such contradictions to be commonplace - placing a vote will likely be against the goals of at least one group you're a member of.  This won't affect zealots, but most people will have to get used to their working buddies cheering on a decision their drinking buddies deride, or dump intolerant groups whenever possible.


Implementation:

It's a good question.  First step is to get the software up and running in a stable secure state and make it as scalable as required.  I'm going to gloss over that unless there are any specifics which you feel are unanswered.

Once you have the software you have to create a movement behind it.  Personally I don't see this as a major challenge, because there are enough people involved in metagovernment now to prove that it can work in a small-medium scale, such as running a company or cooperative organisation/charity.  If you have a working demonstration, and not just theory, it's a lot easier to convince people that there is some value to what you propose.  I expect very few people to read this, for example, even those who have participated in the debate so far, and as such the idea is an almost impossible sell to a wider public who have no other reason to care.

So the obvious next step is to target local government, such as with Senator On-Line (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Senator_On-Line) in Austrailia, and a host of other projects (http://metagovernment.org/wiki/Main_Page) around the world.

With the proxy-voting method applied to candidates, and not just issues, this could interface with an existing power structure like this:

(http://zelea.com/project/votorola/d/theory/power/org.png)

In addition, you have the potential to allow the institutional power structure to reflect the actual voting which took place:

(http://zelea.com/project/votorola/d/theory/power/org-reflect.png)


That's all well and good.  But all we are doing here is filling positions for elected officials.  The next step is to elect officials who will honour the resolutions as decided by the E-Democracy software system.  I don't think this would take much more additional momentum to achieve.

And from there the implementation plan becomes more vague.  In theory working out the kinks and quirks at the smaller scales will allow it to scale up to handle larger tasks.  I'm too cynical to believe it will be quite that simple though.  As much as I'm sure some establishment leaders would jump onto this ship, others would rally against it.  Assuming it delivers on its promises though, it's a tough sell to paint it as something which is bad for the people.


Rush Limbaucracy:

Will the system be overrun by loud mouth asshole demagogues?  Perhaps.  It's a risk.  But bad decisions have consequences, it's easy to remain a loudmouth when you have no actual power, but when you are accountable for your actions then suddenly things get a little more complex.  What can I say, I'm optimistic on that front.


Mob Rule:

Proxy voting is not direct democracy.  Although on certain highly contentious issues it might be.  In those case though, you would have your more educated peers lobbying against you.  I think it'd balance out in the end.  In the meantime it'd be somewhat chaotic and fun and some terrible decisions would be made.  As long as they don't out-weigh the positives though, I firmly believe that attempting this is better than doing nothing.


Images and proxy-voting concept taken and modified from Votorola (http://zelea.com/project/votorola/d/theory.xht).
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Cramulus on July 21, 2010, 02:59:09 pm
can you give us a summary of this idea?
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: LMNO on July 21, 2010, 03:01:22 pm
Please use small, well-defined words. 


That's not snark, I just want to be sure we are all starting at the same place.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 21, 2010, 04:42:44 pm

Sounds like a pie-in-the-sky dream with no pragmatic way to get there?  State your concerns and ask your questions here and we'll see if we can find some answers.

If it's simple direct democracy using the internet as a vehicle, I can easily see HOW you'd do it.

I just wonder WHY you'd do it.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Jasper on July 21, 2010, 05:19:32 pm
Concern:  What type of vote would it be?  E.g. plurality, instant runoff, approval?
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 21, 2010, 05:22:36 pm
Concern:  What type of vote would it be?  E.g. plurality, instant runoff, approval?

I'm more concerned about the mob rule factor, the only evidence of which I need offer is California's proposition 8, in which the mob decided that the law doesn't actually offer equal protection.

And, of course, similar votes in Maine, New Jersey, and Arizona, among other states.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Jasper on July 21, 2010, 05:37:48 pm
I have some hope for certain kinds of democracy, I've mentioned before the benefits of approval voting over plurality.  Some of the mob rule can be ameliorated.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 21, 2010, 06:39:48 pm
I have some hope for certain kinds of democracy, I've mentioned before the benefits of approval voting over plurality.  Some of the mob rule can be ameliorated.

How?
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Jasper on July 21, 2010, 06:41:56 pm
I have some hope for certain kinds of democracy, I've mentioned before the benefits of approval voting over plurality.  Some of the mob rule can be ameliorated.

How?

I don't want to hijack the thread much more, but there's this:

http://www.approvalvoting.org/benefits.html
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 21, 2010, 06:45:08 pm
I have some hope for certain kinds of democracy, I've mentioned before the benefits of approval voting over plurality.  Some of the mob rule can be ameliorated.

How?

I don't want to hijack the thread much more, but there's this:

http://www.approvalvoting.org/benefits.html

How is this hijacking the thread?  It's precisely on topic.

And it's not like Captain Utopia has answered it in his many views of the thread.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 21, 2010, 06:47:48 pm
From the link:

Quote
With Approval Voting you are never stuck with only voting for "the lesser of two evils" as long as more favorable choices are also on the ballot.

Um.  That's already the case.

Quote
Another important consequence of Approval Voting is that the strategy of relying on political attack ads becomes significantly riskier. Attacks may alienate independent and third party voters who, in Approval Voting, are just as important for determining the outcome as is any other voter.

Also already true.  As Cain has pointed out many times, "independent" means "right wing nutjob", and we already know who they're going to vote for, no matter what they say ahead of time.  Hell, the teabaggers are already saying they'll be "forced" to bite the bullet and vote GOP.

Quote
Approval Voting is exactly like the plurality system that is generally used in America today except for one twist: Instead of voting for any single candidate, Approval Voting allows you the option of voting for any number of candidates for a given office. The candidate who collects the most votes wins.

Because the 2000 recount just wasn't funny enough.   :lulz:

Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Adios on July 21, 2010, 06:51:36 pm
From the link:

Quote
With Approval Voting you are never stuck with only voting for "the lesser of two evils" as long as more favorable choices are also on the ballot.

Um.  That's already the case.

Quote
Another important consequence of Approval Voting is that the strategy of relying on political attack ads becomes significantly riskier. Attacks may alienate independent and third party voters who, in Approval Voting, are just as important for determining the outcome as is any other voter.

Also already true.  As Cain has pointed out many times, "independent" means "right wing nutjob", and we already know who they're going to vote for, no matter what they say ahead of time.  Hell, the teabaggers are already saying they'll be "forced" to bite the bullet and vote GOP.

Quote
Approval Voting is exactly like the plurality system that is generally used in America today except for one twist: Instead of voting for any single candidate, Approval Voting allows you the option of voting for any number of candidates for a given office. The candidate who collects the most votes wins.

Because the 2000 recount just wasn't funny enough.   :lulz:



WTF?
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: LMNO on July 21, 2010, 06:57:37 pm
I think what Dok may be getting at (and if he isn't, then I certainly am) is that it doesn't really matter how you vote for something if a system is already in place to make certain that some candidates are more viable than others, based upon factors other than their ideas and competence.

That is to say, corporate money.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Jasper on July 21, 2010, 06:59:04 pm
From the link:

Quote
With Approval Voting you are never stuck with only voting for "the lesser of two evils" as long as more favorable choices are also on the ballot.

Um.  That's already the case.

Game theory disagrees.  You're right in theory, but you know that you're probably not going to get your way if you don't vote D or R.  And it's the only vote you've got.  People who don't want Democrats or Republicans in office would no longer have to choose between making a statement or keeping a certain candidate out of office.

Quote
Another important consequence of Approval Voting is that the strategy of relying on political attack ads becomes significantly riskier. Attacks may alienate independent and third party voters who, in Approval Voting, are just as important for determining the outcome as is any other voter.

Also already true.  As Cain has pointed out many times, "independent" means "right wing nutjob", and we already know who they're going to vote for, no matter what they say ahead of time.  Hell, the teabaggers are already saying they'll be "forced" to bite the bullet and vote GOP.

Not so.  I consider myself an independent because I decide on who to vote for based on the candidate, not the party.  And then there's the swing voters.  

Quote
Approval Voting is exactly like the plurality system that is generally used in America today except for one twist: Instead of voting for any single candidate, Approval Voting allows you the option of voting for any number of candidates for a given office. The candidate who collects the most votes wins.

Because the 2000 recount just wasn't funny enough.   :lulz:

What it amounts to is that the candidate with the most support wins.  A candidate is not a political party.  Why should a party have only one representative?
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Jasper on July 21, 2010, 07:00:22 pm
I think what Dok may be getting at (and if he isn't, then I certainly am) is that it doesn't really matter how you vote for something if a system is already in place to make certain that some candidates are more viable than others, based upon factors other than their ideas and competence.

That is to say, corporate money.

The nice thing about approval voting in our era is that, with the internet, this system would level the playing field with corporate shills and would-be dark horse candidates. 
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Adios on July 21, 2010, 07:01:51 pm
The option to vote for more than person for the same office boggles my mind.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Jasper on July 21, 2010, 07:04:06 pm
Think of it like this:

Instead of all the candidates having to share from the same voting pool (i.e. the country), they each have a chance at winning the entire country's blessing.  So instead of

Candidate Alfred with 24% of the vote!

you would have

Candidate Alfred has 0.465 approval!

(with 1.0 being everybody and 0.0 being nobody)

DISLAIMER:  I pulled 24% and 0.465 out of my bum.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Adios on July 21, 2010, 07:05:29 pm
Bullocks. Voting for more than one person for a single office just cancels out your own votes.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: LMNO on July 21, 2010, 07:05:49 pm
Sig:  I still think that the majority of people would simply vote along their Party Ideology, rather than parse the issues.

The people who would use the ballots in the best manner possible would be the people who voted for Perot and Nader; that is, a minority -- and since there are more options, that minority would be even more fractured.  The Party Candidates would sail in easily.


Charley -- Think of it like ranking your choice.  The candidate that averages the highest ranking wins.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 21, 2010, 07:08:14 pm
I think what Dok may be getting at (and if he isn't, then I certainly am) is that it doesn't really matter how you vote for something if a system is already in place to make certain that some candidates are more viable than others, based upon factors other than their ideas and competence.

That is to say, corporate money.

THIS.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 21, 2010, 07:11:48 pm
I think what Dok may be getting at (and if he isn't, then I certainly am) is that it doesn't really matter how you vote for something if a system is already in place to make certain that some candidates are more viable than others, based upon factors other than their ideas and competence.

That is to say, corporate money.

The nice thing about approval voting in our era is that, with the internet, this system would level the playing field with corporate shills and would-be dark horse candidates. 

Bullshit.  It would have the exact same results, just with added recounts.

Why?  Because humans identify with tribes.  In America, that means liberal/conservative, or in other words democratic/republican.  This is why no 3rd party politicians exist above the dog-catcher level, with the few exceptions of those (Jeffords and Liebermann) who gained power first as a party hack, and then for whatever reason went "independent".
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Jasper on July 21, 2010, 07:12:31 pm
Bullocks. Voting for more than one person for a single office just cancels out your own votes.

It doesn't so.

A ballot might look like this:

✓ Frankenstein
    George Bush
✓ Hollow Man
✓ Headless Horseman
    Bill Gates


You'd be indicating that you're okay with the monsters, but not okay with the politicians.

Quote
For example, in a four way race you can:

    * Vote for nobody meaning you dislike all of the candidates;
    * Vote for one candidate indicating your only approved choice;
    * Vote for two candidates that are both acceptable;
    * Vote for three candidates meaning that you prefer all candidates other than one that you really don't like;
    * Vote for all four candidates meaning that you think that all of the candidates are acceptable.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 21, 2010, 07:14:09 pm
Still not seeing how this would make any difference at all, other than ENSURING that 3rd parties never get off the ground.  It's like crazy glue for Duverger's Law.

Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Adios on July 21, 2010, 07:14:16 pm
Bullocks. Voting for more than one person for a single office just cancels out your own votes.

It doesn't so.

A ballot might look like this:

✓ Frankenstein
    George Bush
✓ Hollow Man
✓ Headless Horseman
    Bill Gates


You'd be indicating that you're okay with the monsters, but not okay with the politicians.

Quote
For example, in a four way race you can:

    * Vote for nobody meaning you dislike all of the candidates;
    * Vote for one candidate indicating your only approved choice;
    * Vote for two candidates that are both acceptable;
    * Vote for three candidates meaning that you prefer all candidates other than one that you really don't like;
    * Vote for all four candidates meaning that you think that all of the candidates are acceptable.

Does not compute.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Jasper on July 21, 2010, 07:16:10 pm
I think what Dok may be getting at (and if he isn't, then I certainly am) is that it doesn't really matter how you vote for something if a system is already in place to make certain that some candidates are more viable than others, based upon factors other than their ideas and competence.

That is to say, corporate money.

The nice thing about approval voting in our era is that, with the internet, this system would level the playing field with corporate shills and would-be dark horse candidates.  

Bullshit.  It would have the exact same results, just with added recounts.

Why?  Because humans identify with tribes.  In America, that means liberal/conservative, or in other words democratic/republican.  This is why no 3rd party politicians exist above the dog-catcher level, with the few exceptions of those (Jeffords and Liebermann) who gained power first as a party hack, and then for whatever reason went "independent".

Your basic notion being that no kind of democratic representation can reasonably guide a nation's interests.

My basic notion is that, although imperfect, this system is better than the one we have now, and that any democracy is preferable to no democracy because people ought to be able to nonviolently choose their leaders.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 21, 2010, 07:16:52 pm
Okay, so we have 100 voters.

20% are dem
20% are gop
35% are swing
5% are Perot/Nader idiots.

20 vote dem, because they are partisan.
20 vote gop, because they are partisan.
35 vote dem or GOP, with a few voting for the 3rd party freaks as well.
5 vote for 3rd party freaks only.

The end results are the same.

Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 21, 2010, 07:17:20 pm
Your basic notion being that no kind of democratic representation can reasonably guide a nation's interests.

What the FUCK?
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Adios on July 21, 2010, 07:17:59 pm
Okay, so we have 100 voters.

20% are dem
20% are gop
35% are swing
5% are Perot/Nader idiots.

20 vote dem, because they are partisan.
20 vote gop, because they are partisan.
35 vote dem or GOP, with a few voting for the 3rd party freaks as well.
5 vote for 3rd party freaks only.

The end results are the same.



Well said Dok.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Jasper on July 21, 2010, 07:19:33 pm
Does not compute.

I'm at a loss for how I can be clearer.

Have you tried the wiki?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Approval_voting
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 21, 2010, 07:20:43 pm
Does not compute.

I'm at a loss for how I can be clearer.

Have you tried the wiki?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Approval_voting


WELL, I HAVEN'T, BECAUSE APPARENTLY I AM AGAINST SELF DETERMINATION.  BECAUSE I DISAGREE WITH SIGMATIC'S PET VERSION OF IT.  OR WORDS TO THAT EFFECT.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Adios on July 21, 2010, 07:21:02 pm
Does not compute.

I'm at a loss for how I can be clearer.

Have you tried the wiki?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Approval_voting


I understand what you are trying to say, I just think it's bullshit.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: LMNO on July 21, 2010, 07:21:47 pm
Ok, let's take an example.  The ballot looks like this:

_Obama (Democrats candidate)
_GW Bush (Republicans candidate)
_Lefty Wingbat
_Right Nutcase
_Greeny McGreenpants
_Glorious Faggot
_Fascist Bullyboy
_Darkie Killer
_Mohammed Mohammed


If you're going to vote for more than one person, you're going to vote for your personal cause, and then for one of the top two mainstream choices.

So, it all but guarantees that whoever leads the media leads the polls, and whoever leads the polls will be chosen along with whatever minor issue candidate you pick.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 21, 2010, 07:21:53 pm
Does not compute.

I'm at a loss for how I can be clearer.

Have you tried the wiki?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Approval_voting


I understand what you are trying to say, I just think it's bullshit.

THEN YOU ARE OBVIOUSLY AN ENEMY OF ALL FORMS OF DEMOCRACY.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Jasper on July 21, 2010, 07:23:24 pm
Okay, so we have 100 voters.

20% are dem
20% are gop
35% are swing
5% are Perot/Nader idiots.

20 vote dem, because they are partisan.
20 vote gop, because they are partisan.
35 vote dem or GOP, with a few voting for the 3rd party freaks as well.
5 vote for 3rd party freaks only.

The end results are the same.

Except those partisan voters probably aren't as loyal as they thought they were, when they realize they can have their cake and eat it too.  The implementation wouldn't likely change everything in one voting cycle, but I see that as a benefit.

Your basic notion being that no kind of democratic representation can reasonably guide a nation's interests.

What the FUCK?

My bad, that's just a premise I seem to have misread in your arguments.  I take that back, but everything else I stand by.  
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Adios on July 21, 2010, 07:23:51 pm
Ok, let's take an example.  The ballot looks like this:

_Obama (Democrats candidate)
_GW Bush (Republicans candidate)
_Lefty Wingbat
_Right Nutcase
_Greeny McGreenpants
_Glorious Faggot
_Fascist Bullyboy
_Darkie Killer
_Mohammed Mohammed


If you're going to vote for more than one person, you're going to vote for your personal cause, and then for one of the top two mainstream choices.

So, it all but guarantees that whoever leads the media leads the polls, and whoever leads the polls will be chosen along with whatever minor issue candidate you pick.

And in the process you cancel your own vote out.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Adios on July 21, 2010, 07:24:17 pm
Does not compute.

I'm at a loss for how I can be clearer.

Have you tried the wiki?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Approval_voting


I understand what you are trying to say, I just think it's bullshit.

THEN YOU ARE OBVIOUSLY AN ENEMY OF ALL FORMS OF DEMOCRACY.

Just that kind.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 21, 2010, 07:24:28 pm

My bad, that's just a premise I seem to have misread in your arguments.  I take that back, but everything else I stand by.  

Who the fuck did you get that from my arguments?  At what point did I say anything like it?

Honestly curious, here.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 21, 2010, 07:25:33 pm
can you give us a summary of this idea?

Updated the OP to reflect this.  Contains nothing really that I haven't already covered in a more disjointed form in other threads, but it's a good idea to put it together, and I'll modify the OP as gaping holes in the logic is found.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 21, 2010, 07:25:50 pm
Ok, let's take an example.  The ballot looks like this:

_Obama (Democrats candidate)
_GW Bush (Republicans candidate)
_Lefty Wingbat
_Right Nutcase
_Greeny McGreenpants
_Glorious Faggot
_Fascist Bullyboy
_Darkie Killer
_Mohammed Mohammed


If you're going to vote for more than one person, you're going to vote for your personal cause, and then for one of the top two mainstream choices.

So, it all but guarantees that whoever leads the media leads the polls, and whoever leads the polls will be chosen along with whatever minor issue candidate you pick.

And in the process you cancel your own vote out.

Only if you vote for the most popular 2 at the same time.

Otherwise, your vote works precisely the way it did before, only it eliminates any chance whatsoever of a 3rd party ever achieving anything in an election other than wasting money.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 21, 2010, 07:27:16 pm
Sounds like a pie-in-the-sky dream with no pragmatic way to get there?  State your concerns and ask your questions here and we'll see if we can find some answers.

Summary:

The basic concept is quite simple - use information technology to provide an efficient and powerful mechanism to democratically influence the direction a group takes on any or all issues which face that group.

We already have that.  It's called TV.

Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Adios on July 21, 2010, 07:28:30 pm
Ok, let's take an example.  The ballot looks like this:

_Obama (Democrats candidate)
_GW Bush (Republicans candidate)
_Lefty Wingbat
_Right Nutcase
_Greeny McGreenpants
_Glorious Faggot
_Fascist Bullyboy
_Darkie Killer
_Mohammed Mohammed


If you're going to vote for more than one person, you're going to vote for your personal cause, and then for one of the top two mainstream choices.

So, it all but guarantees that whoever leads the media leads the polls, and whoever leads the polls will be chosen along with whatever minor issue candidate you pick.

And in the process you cancel your own vote out.

Only if you vote for the most popular 2 at the same time.

Otherwise, your vote works precisely the way it did before, only it eliminates any chance whatsoever of a 3rd party ever achieving anything in an election other than wasting money.

That's exactly what I am trying to say. All it is is an opportunity for a 'warm fuzzy' vote that you immediately cancel out by voting for a mainstream candidate.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Cramulus on July 21, 2010, 07:28:48 pm
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Instant-runoff_voting

Instant Runoff voting is like approval voting, but your prioritize who you want to win.


the advantage of these systems is that they are able to compromise better than a single-vote winner-take-all race.

For example, let's say you've got

Bush
Gore
Nader

to make it really simple---
let's pretend all republicans love bush, and would prefer nader to gore.
let's pretend all democrats love gore, and would prefer nader to bush.

If they all vote nader as #2, and there isn't a clear majority for #1, then nader will probably win because he was everybody's second choice. And at least you get your second choice instead of the guy you hate.

Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 21, 2010, 07:28:54 pm
tl;dr - Hey look, it's America's got Talent!

Oh, I see.  In your opinion, we're all idiots who can't read 2 pages of writing.

Well, then there's no point addressing the other paragraphs you wrote, is there?
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Jasper on July 21, 2010, 07:30:07 pm
Ok, let's take an example.  The ballot looks like this:

_Obama (Democrats candidate)
_GW Bush (Republicans candidate)
_Lefty Wingbat
_Right Nutcase
_Greeny McGreenpants
_Glorious Faggot
_Fascist Bullyboy
_Darkie Killer
_Mohammed Mohammed


If you're going to vote for more than one person, you're going to vote for your personal cause, and then for one of the top two mainstream choices.

So, it all but guarantees that whoever leads the media leads the polls, and whoever leads the polls will be chosen along with whatever minor issue candidate you pick.

And in the process you cancel your own vote out.

No, because you haven't given the opposition an edge, you've just given the go-ahead for more than one candidate.

You seem to be stuck on the whole problem with the current system, being "giving votes to 3rd party candidates spoils elections".  This system doesn't have that drawback, period.


My bad, that's just a premise I seem to have misread in your arguments.  I take that back, but everything else I stand by.  

Who the fuck did you get that from my arguments?  At what point did I say anything like it?

Honestly curious, here.

Okay, I drew hasty conclusions uncharitably inferred from your statements.  

It was a mistake, I'd appreciate a bit of forgiveness.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 21, 2010, 07:30:28 pm
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Instant-runoff_voting

Instant Runoff voting is like approval voting, but your prioritize who you want to win.


the advantage of these systems is that they are able to compromise better than a single-vote winner-take-all race.

For example, let's say you've got

Bush
Gore
Nader

to make it really simple---
let's pretend all republicans love bush, and would prefer nader to gore.
let's pretend all democrats love gore, and would prefer nader to bush.

If they all vote nader as #2, and there isn't a clear majority for #1, then nader will probably win because he was everybody's second choice. And at least you get your second choice instead of the guy you hate.



Okay, I can see this being viable...Let me make sure I have it straight, though...You have to assign a priority to every candidate for your ballot to be valid?
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 21, 2010, 07:30:51 pm
Concern:  What type of vote would it be?  E.g. plurality, instant runoff, approval?

I prefer the proxy-voting method.  But I also think that a group should be able to define its own method of reaching a decision.  Increased consensus is one thing all sides can agree upon as being desirable, even when they disagree on what that looks like or how to reach it.

So if a different voting method actually increased consensus, then you could test your algorithm against the votes placed in the public record and prove the benefits that way.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 21, 2010, 07:31:29 pm

Okay, I drew hasty conclusions uncharitably inferred from your statements.  

It was a mistake, I'd appreciate a bit of forgiveness.

Oh, yeah, no problem with the forgiveness bit.  I'm just curious as to what I said that led you to infer that.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Adios on July 21, 2010, 07:32:44 pm
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Instant-runoff_voting

Instant Runoff voting is like approval voting, but your prioritize who you want to win.


the advantage of these systems is that they are able to compromise better than a single-vote winner-take-all race.

For example, let's say you've got

Bush
Gore
Nader

to make it really simple---
let's pretend all republicans love bush, and would prefer nader to gore.
let's pretend all democrats love gore, and would prefer nader to bush.

If they all vote nader as #2, and there isn't a clear majority for #1, then nader will probably win because he was everybody's second choice. And at least you get your second choice instead of the guy you hate.



Okay, I can see this being viable...Let me make sure I have it straight, though...You have to assign a priority to every candidate for your ballot to be valid?

I am a little dense. If only 3 people are on the ballot it might just work. Why do I suspect there would be far more than 3?
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 21, 2010, 07:34:48 pm
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Instant-runoff_voting

Instant Runoff voting is like approval voting, but your prioritize who you want to win.


the advantage of these systems is that they are able to compromise better than a single-vote winner-take-all race.

For example, let's say you've got

Bush
Gore
Nader

to make it really simple---
let's pretend all republicans love bush, and would prefer nader to gore.
let's pretend all democrats love gore, and would prefer nader to bush.

If they all vote nader as #2, and there isn't a clear majority for #1, then nader will probably win because he was everybody's second choice. And at least you get your second choice instead of the guy you hate.



Okay, I can see this being viable...Let me make sure I have it straight, though...You have to assign a priority to every candidate for your ballot to be valid?

I am a little dense. If only 3 people are on the ballot it might just work. Why do I suspect there would be far more than 3?

It would get more complex the more people you had on it, yeah.  And I can see the two bigs forming teabagger-esque organizations to confuse the issue.  But it's still better than approval voting, and it would at least force the bigs to dance like monkeys, so I think I can get behind this.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 21, 2010, 07:36:17 pm
Concern:  What type of vote would it be?  E.g. plurality, instant runoff, approval?

I'm more concerned about the mob rule factor, the only evidence of which I need offer is California's proposition 8, in which the mob decided that the law doesn't actually offer equal protection.

And, of course, similar votes in Maine, New Jersey, and Arizona, among other states.

I didn't believe Prop 8 would pass.  I'm sure there were people who would have made more of an effort to defeat it if they knew it was a danger.  In the system I'm talking about though, you'd have a voting window, during which the results would be public -- you could be forewarned of impending disaster.  If one group game to snipe the vote and swing it in the last five minutes, then the outraged majority could immediately repeal it.

If, in fact, a majority of Californians decide they don't want gay marriage, then I'd still try to change their minds, but I'd accept that decision in the meantime.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Cramulus on July 21, 2010, 07:39:51 pm
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Instant-runoff_voting

Instant Runoff voting is like approval voting, but your prioritize who you want to win.


the advantage of these systems is that they are able to compromise better than a single-vote winner-take-all race.

For example, let's say you've got

Bush
Gore
Nader

to make it really simple---
let's pretend all republicans love bush, and would prefer nader to gore.
let's pretend all democrats love gore, and would prefer nader to bush.

If they all vote nader as #2, and there isn't a clear majority for #1, then nader will probably win because he was everybody's second choice. And at least you get your second choice instead of the guy you hate.



Okay, I can see this being viable...Let me make sure I have it straight, though...You have to assign a priority to every candidate for your ballot to be valid?


here's an example of a completed ballot:

(http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/1/18/Preferential_ballot.svg/220px-Preferential_ballot.svg.png)

from wikipedia:

"If no candidate is the first preference of a majority of voters, the candidate with the fewest number of first preference rankings is eliminated and that candidate's ballots are redistributed at full value to the remaining candidates according to the next preference on each ballot. This process is repeated until one candidate obtains a majority of votes among the remaining candidates."
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 21, 2010, 07:41:32 pm


If, in fact, a majority of Californians decide they don't want gay marriage, then I'd still try to change their minds, but I'd accept that decision in the meantime.

No problem.  I don't like you having freedom of assembly, or speech for that matter.  If I can get enough people to agree with me, should I be able to keep you from meeting with associates or speaking your mind?
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Jasper on July 21, 2010, 07:42:37 pm
Only if you actually want a mainstream candidate does a vote for another mainstream candidate actually harm your chances.  You could vote to approve of every candidate except the two mainstreamers.  You could vote for nobody BUT the outsider candidate you want.  

Approval doesn't just give you leeway in choosing who you want, but also who you don't because in this system you choose or not choose each candidate separately.

Here's the thing though:  If you simply check the box next to each candidate you like, you're just a lot more likely to get one of the ones you liked.  It won't leave ~49% of the voters feeling burned for 4 years, which will lead to fewer crazy people.  Which won't really help me convince Dok Howl, but...

I'm just curious as to what I said that led you to infer that.

No idea, in fairness.  I guess just the way you seem pretty sour about democracy in general.


As far as IRV goes:

http://minguo.info/election_methods/irv/

Quote
IRV is very good at preventing minor parties from interfering with the two-party system, but it is arguably no better than our current plurality system at expanding the two-party system and giving other parties a chance to actually win elections. Furthermore, if a third party ever does become strong enough under IRV to seriously threaten the two major parties, they could hurt their own cause and wreak havoc with our entire political system, just as they could under our current plurality system.

So yeah, IRV is more of a Dok Howl pick.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 21, 2010, 07:42:45 pm
Cram, that looks too much like approval voting, if not everyone has to be ranked.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Adios on July 21, 2010, 07:42:58 pm
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Instant-runoff_voting

Instant Runoff voting is like approval voting, but your prioritize who you want to win.


the advantage of these systems is that they are able to compromise better than a single-vote winner-take-all race.

For example, let's say you've got

Bush
Gore
Nader

to make it really simple---
let's pretend all republicans love bush, and would prefer nader to gore.
let's pretend all democrats love gore, and would prefer nader to bush.

If they all vote nader as #2, and there isn't a clear majority for #1, then nader will probably win because he was everybody's second choice. And at least you get your second choice instead of the guy you hate.



Okay, I can see this being viable...Let me make sure I have it straight, though...You have to assign a priority to every candidate for your ballot to be valid?


here's an example of a completed ballot:

(http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/1/18/Preferential_ballot.svg/220px-Preferential_ballot.svg.png)

from wikipedia:

"If no candidate is the first preference of a majority of voters, the candidate with the fewest number of first preference rankings is eliminated and that candidate's ballots are redistributed at full value to the remaining candidates according to the next preference on each ballot. This process is repeated until one candidate obtains a majority of votes among the remaining candidates."

See, the ranking makes a lot more sense.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 21, 2010, 07:44:28 pm
No idea, in fairness.  I guess just the way you seem pretty sour about democracy in general.

I'm sour on direct democracy, for very sound historical (and not so historical) reasons.  The republic we have worked fine for 200 years or so, and is only now reaching its complexity limit.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Jasper on July 21, 2010, 07:45:19 pm
No idea, in fairness.  I guess just the way you seem pretty sour about democracy in general.

I'm sour on direct democracy, for very sound historical (and not so historical) reasons.  The republic we have worked fine for 200 years or so, and is only now reaching its complexity limit.

I'm curious though; If you were interested in making things work better, what would you suggest?

Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 21, 2010, 07:46:46 pm
No idea, in fairness.  I guess just the way you seem pretty sour about democracy in general.

I'm sour on direct democracy, for very sound historical (and not so historical) reasons.  The republic we have worked fine for 200 years or so, and is only now reaching its complexity limit.

I'm curious though; If you were interested in making things work better, what would you suggest?



IF I was interested in making things work better, I'd break the country into 5 pieces and let them sort it out as separate nations.  Seriously.

It wouldn't fix the problem, but it would delay the inevitable.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Jasper on July 21, 2010, 07:50:17 pm
Huh.

That would actually be kind of cool, although I worry that too many wars would break out over who gets CA.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 21, 2010, 07:50:52 pm
tl;dr - Hey look, it's America's got Talent!

Oh, I see.  In your opinion, we're all idiots who can't read 2 pages of writing.

Well, then there's no point addressing the other paragraphs you wrote, is there?

After all the unrequited snark and condescension thrown my way over the last few days, I thought I'd be forgiven a friendly jibe in return.  I'm sorry if anyone took it personally, and I've removed it from the OP.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 21, 2010, 07:51:46 pm
Huh.

That would actually be kind of cool, although I worry that too many wars would break out over who gets CA.

And who gets stuck with Texas.  But that would be all part of the fun.

In addition, you'd have hundreds of "reunification" movements all over the damn place, with yahoos trying to regain the "glory" we currently are mired in.

So, yeah, I kind of like this idea even more now.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Jasper on July 21, 2010, 07:53:36 pm
I'm starting to wonder if you're not in some vast conspiracy to help the Brits retake the colonies. :lulz:
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 21, 2010, 07:55:59 pm
I'm starting to wonder if you're not in some vast conspiracy to help the Brits retake the colonies. :lulz:

They never left.  This is all a horrible, horrible experiment.

And a way to get rid of their puritans.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Adios on July 21, 2010, 07:58:36 pm
No idea, in fairness.  I guess just the way you seem pretty sour about democracy in general.

I'm sour on direct democracy, for very sound historical (and not so historical) reasons.  The republic we have worked fine for 200 years or so, and is only now reaching its complexity limit.

I'm curious though; If you were interested in making things work better, what would you suggest?



IF I was interested in making things work better, I'd break the country into 5 pieces and let them sort it out as separate nations.  Seriously.

It wouldn't fix the problem, but it would delay the inevitable.

I like this idea. Seperate the country east to west, not north to south.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 21, 2010, 07:59:08 pm
If, in fact, a majority of Californians decide they don't want gay marriage, then I'd still try to change their minds, but I'd accept that decision in the meantime.

No problem.  I don't like you having freedom of assembly, or speech for that matter.  If I can get enough people to agree with me, should I be able to keep you from meeting with associates or speaking your mind?

Yeah, why the hell not?  The only thing stopping you from doing that today, is the same thing which would stop you tomorrow - the difficulty in convincing a majority that it is a good thing.

The difference is that with an E-Democracy system, you need not wait years to correct a mistake once the error is made obvious.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: LMNO on July 21, 2010, 08:00:07 pm
You could vote to approve of every candidate except the two mainstreamers.  You could vote for nobody BUT the outsider candidate you want.

I agree-- however, "could" is the tricky part.  If we are implementing this in the midst of our current crop of voting public, most wouldn't.  Especially when the two mainstreamers flood the airwaves with "whoever you want, but us too" messages.  And the GOP and DNC getting on every news channel warning about the dangers of not choosing the top Party Pick along with your Issues candidate, in case the other side gangs up on you.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 21, 2010, 08:01:48 pm
I think what Dok may be getting at (and if he isn't, then I certainly am) is that it doesn't really matter how you vote for something if a system is already in place to make certain that some candidates are more viable than others, based upon factors other than their ideas and competence.

That is to say, corporate money.

The nice thing about approval voting in our era is that, with the internet, this system would level the playing field with corporate shills and would-be dark horse candidates. 

I expect I'll live to see the day when we don't have political parties.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Jasper on July 21, 2010, 08:03:04 pm
If, in fact, a majority of Californians decide they don't want gay marriage, then I'd still try to change their minds, but I'd accept that decision in the meantime.

No problem.  I don't like you having freedom of assembly, or speech for that matter.  If I can get enough people to agree with me, should I be able to keep you from meeting with associates or speaking your mind?

Yeah, why the hell not?  The only thing stopping you from doing that today, is the same thing which would stop you tomorrow - the difficulty in convincing a majority that it is a good thing.

The difference is that with an E-Democracy system, you need not wait years to correct a mistake once the error is made obvious.


Why not just streamline impeach and repeal processes?

You could vote to approve of every candidate except the two mainstreamers.  You could vote for nobody BUT the outsider candidate you want.

I agree-- however, "could" is the tricky part.  If we are implementing this in the midst of our current crop of voting public, most wouldn't.  Especially when the two mainstreamers flood the airwaves with "whoever you want, but us too" messages.  And the GOP and DNC getting on every news channel warning about the dangers of not choosing the top Party Pick along with your Issues candidate, in case the other side gangs up on you.

That will be the way of things when it first hits the shelves, but with time people would come to understand that the new system doesn't really help the two-party system in any way and that they'll be safe just voting how they want.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 21, 2010, 08:04:31 pm
If, in fact, a majority of Californians decide they don't want gay marriage, then I'd still try to change their minds, but I'd accept that decision in the meantime.

No problem.  I don't like you having freedom of assembly, or speech for that matter.  If I can get enough people to agree with me, should I be able to keep you from meeting with associates or speaking your mind?

Yeah, why the hell not?  The only thing stopping you from doing that today, is the same thing which would stop you tomorrow - the difficulty in convincing a majority that it is a good thing.


So we toss out the rule of law.  

Oh, yeah.  That'll work.  The next cycle of conservativism that hits America would lead to more fun than you could shake a truncheon at.

Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Jasper on July 21, 2010, 08:05:10 pm
I think what Dok may be getting at (and if he isn't, then I certainly am) is that it doesn't really matter how you vote for something if a system is already in place to make certain that some candidates are more viable than others, based upon factors other than their ideas and competence.

That is to say, corporate money.

The nice thing about approval voting in our era is that, with the internet, this system would level the playing field with corporate shills and would-be dark horse candidates.  

I expect I'll live to see the day when we don't have political parties.

A fine sentiment, but it's not enough to say "the future will fix everything".  What we need are nuts-and-bolts solutions, not high-concept voting technology.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Adios on July 21, 2010, 08:05:54 pm
If, in fact, a majority of Californians decide they don't want gay marriage, then I'd still try to change their minds, but I'd accept that decision in the meantime.

No problem.  I don't like you having freedom of assembly, or speech for that matter.  If I can get enough people to agree with me, should I be able to keep you from meeting with associates or speaking your mind?

Yeah, why the hell not?  The only thing stopping you from doing that today, is the same thing which would stop you tomorrow - the difficulty in convincing a majority that it is a good thing.


So we toss out the rule of law.  

Oh, yeah.  That'll work.  The next cycle of conservativism that hits America would lead to more fun than you could shake a truncheon at.



Hells yeah. Who needs civil rights and the Constitution.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 21, 2010, 08:07:59 pm
If, in fact, a majority of Californians decide they don't want gay marriage, then I'd still try to change their minds, but I'd accept that decision in the meantime.

No problem.  I don't like you having freedom of assembly, or speech for that matter.  If I can get enough people to agree with me, should I be able to keep you from meeting with associates or speaking your mind?

Yeah, why the hell not?  The only thing stopping you from doing that today, is the same thing which would stop you tomorrow - the difficulty in convincing a majority that it is a good thing.


So we toss out the rule of law.  

Oh, yeah.  That'll work.  The next cycle of conservativism that hits America would lead to more fun than you could shake a truncheon at.



Hells yeah. Who needs civil rights and the Constitution.

Because we all know, for example, that 70% of Arizonans would never agree to marginalize Hispanics.  Right now, we have a legal means of dealing with this, but since that would never happen, we should just toss the rule of law, and revert to the rule of men.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Jasper on July 21, 2010, 08:10:16 pm
Some laws should require near unanimity to change.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 21, 2010, 08:11:10 pm
Some laws should require near unanimity to change.

Okay, so now we'd have two levels (or more) of requirements for laws.  More complexity.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: LMNO on July 21, 2010, 08:11:43 pm
You could vote to approve of every candidate except the two mainstreamers.  You could vote for nobody BUT the outsider candidate you want.

I agree-- however, "could" is the tricky part.  If we are implementing this in the midst of our current crop of voting public, most wouldn't.  Especially when the two mainstreamers flood the airwaves with "whoever you want, but us too" messages.  And the GOP and DNC getting on every news channel warning about the dangers of not choosing the top Party Pick along with your Issues candidate, in case the other side gangs up on you.

That will be the way of things when it first hits the shelves, but with time people would come to understand that the new system doesn't really help the two-party system in any way and that they'll be safe just voting how they want.

Based upon what observations, exactly? Sorry if it sounds jaded, but I mean, really.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Adios on July 21, 2010, 08:14:13 pm
You could vote to approve of every candidate except the two mainstreamers.  You could vote for nobody BUT the outsider candidate you want.

I agree-- however, "could" is the tricky part.  If we are implementing this in the midst of our current crop of voting public, most wouldn't.  Especially when the two mainstreamers flood the airwaves with "whoever you want, but us too" messages.  And the GOP and DNC getting on every news channel warning about the dangers of not choosing the top Party Pick along with your Issues candidate, in case the other side gangs up on you.

That will be the way of things when it first hits the shelves, but with time people would come to understand that the new system doesn't really help the two-party system in any way and that they'll be safe just voting how they want.

Based upon what observations, exactly? Sorry if it sounds jaded, but I mean, really.

My observations that sheep will follow the catchiest soundbite.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Cramulus on July 21, 2010, 08:14:27 pm
If, in fact, a majority of Californians decide they don't want gay marriage, then I'd still try to change their minds, but I'd accept that decision in the meantime.

No problem.  I don't like you having freedom of assembly, or speech for that matter.  If I can get enough people to agree with me, should I be able to keep you from meeting with associates or speaking your mind?

Yeah, why the hell not?  The only thing stopping you from doing that today, is the same thing which would stop you tomorrow - the difficulty in convincing a majority that it is a good thing.


So we toss out the rule of law.  

Oh, yeah.  That'll work.  The next cycle of conservativism that hits America would lead to more fun than you could shake a truncheon at.



Hells yeah. Who needs civil rights and the Constitution.

Because we all know, for example, that 70% of Arizonans would never agree to marginalize Hispanics.  Right now, we have a legal means of dealing with this, but since that would never happen, we should just toss the rule of law, and revert to the rule of men.

I think you're putting words in CU's mouth. He didn't say he wants to toss out rule of law. He's pointing out that if a majority of Americans wanted to change a law (ie repeal freedom of speech), they can do it under both the current and proposed systems.




Some laws should require near unanimity to change.

Okay, so now we'd have two levels (or more) of requirements for laws.  More complexity.

this already exists under the current system

it's harder to change the constitution, for example, than any other laws.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Jasper on July 21, 2010, 08:16:03 pm
You could vote to approve of every candidate except the two mainstreamers.  You could vote for nobody BUT the outsider candidate you want.

I agree-- however, "could" is the tricky part.  If we are implementing this in the midst of our current crop of voting public, most wouldn't.  Especially when the two mainstreamers flood the airwaves with "whoever you want, but us too" messages.  And the GOP and DNC getting on every news channel warning about the dangers of not choosing the top Party Pick along with your Issues candidate, in case the other side gangs up on you.

That will be the way of things when it first hits the shelves, but with time people would come to understand that the new system doesn't really help the two-party system in any way and that they'll be safe just voting how they want.

Based upon what observations, exactly? Sorry if it sounds jaded, but I mean, really.

Early election results would demonstrate (not explicate) the way the new system had changed the election dynamic.   There would (highly likely) be a dramatically smaller gap between mainstreamers and 3rd party candidates, and as a result of seeing that, chances are people would stop clinging to their parties for security.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Adios on July 21, 2010, 08:16:46 pm
If, in fact, a majority of Californians decide they don't want gay marriage, then I'd still try to change their minds, but I'd accept that decision in the meantime.

No problem.  I don't like you having freedom of assembly, or speech for that matter.  If I can get enough people to agree with me, should I be able to keep you from meeting with associates or speaking your mind?

Yeah, why the hell not?  The only thing stopping you from doing that today, is the same thing which would stop you tomorrow - the difficulty in convincing a majority that it is a good thing.


So we toss out the rule of law.  

Oh, yeah.  That'll work.  The next cycle of conservativism that hits America would lead to more fun than you could shake a truncheon at.



Hells yeah. Who needs civil rights and the Constitution.

Because we all know, for example, that 70% of Arizonans would never agree to marginalize Hispanics.  Right now, we have a legal means of dealing with this, but since that would never happen, we should just toss the rule of law, and revert to the rule of men.

I think you're putting words in CU's mouth. He didn't say he wants to toss out rule of law. He's pointing out that if a majority of Americans wanted to change a law (ie repeal freedom of speech), they can do it under both the current and proposed systems.




Some laws should require near unanimity to change.

Okay, so now we'd have two levels (or more) of requirements for laws.  More complexity.

this already exists under the current system

it's harder to change the constitution, for example, than any other laws.

The bolded parts are the issue. The correct answer to what would stop hi is the Constitution and rule of law and civil rights.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 21, 2010, 08:17:21 pm
If, in fact, a majority of Californians decide they don't want gay marriage, then I'd still try to change their minds, but I'd accept that decision in the meantime.

No problem.  I don't like you having freedom of assembly, or speech for that matter.  If I can get enough people to agree with me, should I be able to keep you from meeting with associates or speaking your mind?

Yeah, why the hell not?  The only thing stopping you from doing that today, is the same thing which would stop you tomorrow - the difficulty in convincing a majority that it is a good thing.


So we toss out the rule of law.  

Oh, yeah.  That'll work.  The next cycle of conservativism that hits America would lead to more fun than you could shake a truncheon at.

Huh?

If you can get a clear majority of people to support tossing out the rule of law today, then you can find a party which will be willing to support that agenda.  If enough people want it, it'll happen.

Now please explain how E-Democracy changes that.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Adios on July 21, 2010, 08:19:38 pm
If, in fact, a majority of Californians decide they don't want gay marriage, then I'd still try to change their minds, but I'd accept that decision in the meantime.

No problem.  I don't like you having freedom of assembly, or speech for that matter.  If I can get enough people to agree with me, should I be able to keep you from meeting with associates or speaking your mind?

Yeah, why the hell not?  The only thing stopping you from doing that today, is the same thing which would stop you tomorrow - the difficulty in convincing a majority that it is a good thing.


So we toss out the rule of law.  

Oh, yeah.  That'll work.  The next cycle of conservativism that hits America would lead to more fun than you could shake a truncheon at.

Huh?

If you can get a clear majority of people to support tossing out the rule of law today, then you can find a party which will be willing to support that agenda.  If enough people want it, it'll happen.

Now please explain how E-Democracy changes that.


Are you serious?
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 21, 2010, 08:21:31 pm

I'm perfectly serious.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Adios on July 21, 2010, 08:22:14 pm

I'm perfectly serious.

Ever hear of The Constitution of the Unites States? Google it, it's a pretty good read.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: LMNO on July 21, 2010, 08:23:01 pm

Early election results would demonstrate (not explicate) the way the new system had changed the election dynamic.   There would (highly likely) be a dramatically smaller gap between mainstreamers and 3rd party candidates, and as a result of seeing that, chances are people would stop clinging to their parties for security.

I don't follow.  Both the Democratic and Republican parties are "umbrellas" that contain many different opinions.  If the Party Pick wins, they will win with a scattered assortment of Issues Candidates.  Early results will show a vast minority of issue candidates, and a strong majority of Party Picks.  This doesn't show any change to the election dynamic.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: AFK on July 21, 2010, 08:24:08 pm
None of this changes the mindset of the voter.  And THAT is the problem.  People can already check a box next to a 3rd party candidate instead of a D or an R.  But people go with the D or the R.  using a ranking system or a runoff system, or approval voting isn't going to change that.  The issue is voter education not the voting system.

And I honestly think the e-democracy idea is rife with issues, starting with the technology.  Voting irregularities are bad enough as it is with people manning polling places.  Make it impersonal, put it on the internet, I think voting fraud goes way up.  

Overhauling the voting system isn't addressing the actual problems, IMO.  
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 21, 2010, 08:26:03 pm

I'm perfectly serious.

Ever hear of The Constitution of the Unites States? Google it, it's a pretty good read.

You didn't explain how threats to the US Constitution is a problem unique to E-Democracy.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Dysfunctional Cunt on July 21, 2010, 08:27:19 pm
If it goes on "ranking" it would only be a matter of time before they decided to just use the gallup polls!

I think this would leave a lot of room for people to bitch moan and complain and stir the shit even more than they do now.

And an added note, changing a 3-4 line opening post into a fucking book is not the way to do it.  I only went back to the first page on accident.  Otherwise I never would have known you did that.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: AFK on July 21, 2010, 08:27:45 pm
Another issue I would point out with any kind of ranking or approval system is that there is a lot of faith put into people making thoughtful decisions as they assign ranks.  Let's say on a ballot of 7 candidates someone picks/ranks 5 of them.  After they've picked #1 or #2, how do we know they are putting the same effort of thought into picking the other 3 and not just randomly assigning numbers?  
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Adios on July 21, 2010, 08:27:55 pm

I'm perfectly serious.

Ever hear of The Constitution of the Unites States? Google it, it's a pretty good read.

You didn't explain how threats to the US Constitution is a problem unique to E-Democracy.

WTF? Try to stay on topic. The current topic between you and I is throwing out the rule of law.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 21, 2010, 08:28:04 pm
I think you're putting words in CU's mouth. He didn't say he wants to toss out rule of law. He's pointing out that if a majority of Americans wanted to change a law (ie repeal freedom of speech), they can do it under both the current and proposed systems.

it's harder to change the constitution, for example, than any other laws.

So we should make it easier to strip people of their rights?

This brings me back to my comment the other day that under every utopia, there is something vile.  In this case, the tyranny of the majority.

He proposes to replace a broken system with hell on Earth.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 21, 2010, 08:28:44 pm
None of this changes the mindset of the voter.  And THAT is the problem.  People can already check a box next to a 3rd party candidate instead of a D or an R.  But people go with the D or the R.  using a ranking system or a runoff system, or approval voting isn't going to change that.  The issue is voter education not the voting system.

Implementing a new voting systems is not the subject of E-Democracy.


And I honestly think the e-democracy idea is rife with issues, starting with the technology.  Voting irregularities are bad enough as it is with people manning polling places.  Make it impersonal, put it on the internet, I think voting fraud goes way up.  

Overhauling the voting system isn't addressing the actual problems, IMO.  

Did you read the OP?  I do address these issues there.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: LMNO on July 21, 2010, 08:29:09 pm
The issue is voter education not the voting system.

This is the heart of my argument, as well.

If the problem is that most people 1) don't vote, and 2) pay more attention to style than substance.  Changing how they pick things isn't going to help, if what they pick isn't based upon rational, informed decisions.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 21, 2010, 08:29:30 pm

I'm perfectly serious.

Ever hear of The Constitution of the Unites States? Google it, it's a pretty good read.

You didn't explain how threats to the US Constitution is a problem unique to E-Democracy.

It isn't unique.  But your vision would destroy it completely.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 21, 2010, 08:30:43 pm
And an added note, changing a 3-4 line opening post into a fucking book is not the way to do it.  I only went back to the first page on accident.  Otherwise I never would have known you did that.

I did advertise the change.  I'm sorry if it's too long, but I did want to make sure that I wasn't accused of not providing any details.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 21, 2010, 08:31:16 pm

I'm perfectly serious.

Ever hear of The Constitution of the Unites States? Google it, it's a pretty good read.

You didn't explain how threats to the US Constitution is a problem unique to E-Democracy.

It isn't unique.  But your vision would destroy it completely.

Precisely how?
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 21, 2010, 08:31:59 pm

I'm perfectly serious.

Ever hear of The Constitution of the Unites States? Google it, it's a pretty good read.

You didn't explain how threats to the US Constitution is a problem unique to E-Democracy.

It isn't unique.  But your vision would destroy it completely.

Precisely how?


By removal of any safeguards to civil liberties other than the whim of the mob.

See:  Athens, history of.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Jasper on July 21, 2010, 08:33:30 pm
The issue is voter education not the voting system.

This is the heart of my argument, as well.

If the problem is that most people 1) don't vote, and 2) pay more attention to style than substance.  Changing how they pick things isn't going to help, if what they pick isn't based upon rational, informed decisions.

This thread isn't ABOUT fixing the problem of uninformed voters, it's about the problems of the voting system itself.  It's naive, or dishonest, to say that the problem lies solely with one or the other.

The biggest problem I'm having here is that everybody seems to think that voters actually LIKE being shunted into one of two vast, nebulous political umbrellas.  

Cynicism fail.

If we can't get past that basic premise, I can't really argue this point.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 21, 2010, 08:35:29 pm
This thread isn't ABOUT fixing the problem of uninformed voters, it's about the problems of the voting system itself.  

There's nothing wrong with our voting system that wouldn't be just as bad or worse under any other system.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Adios on July 21, 2010, 08:35:47 pm
The issue is voter education not the voting system.

This is the heart of my argument, as well.

If the problem is that most people 1) don't vote, and 2) pay more attention to style than substance.  Changing how they pick things isn't going to help, if what they pick isn't based upon rational, informed decisions.

This thread isn't ABOUT fixing the problem of uninformed voters, it's about the problems of the voting system itself.  It's naive, or dishonest, to say that the problem lies solely with one or the other.

The biggest problem I'm having here is that everybody seems to think that voters actually LIKE being shunted into one of two vast, nebulous political umbrellas.  

Cynicism fail.

If we can't get past that basic premise, I can't really argue this point.

Simply changing the way uninformed votes are cast is fail. If you are going to rebuild the voting system then it requires a complete rebuild, not just part.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: AFK on July 21, 2010, 08:36:54 pm
None of this changes the mindset of the voter.  And THAT is the problem.  People can already check a box next to a 3rd party candidate instead of a D or an R.  But people go with the D or the R.  using a ranking system or a runoff system, or approval voting isn't going to change that.  The issue is voter education not the voting system.

Implementing a new voting systems is not the subject of E-Democracy.


And I honestly think the e-democracy idea is rife with issues, starting with the technology.  Voting irregularities are bad enough as it is with people manning polling places.  Make it impersonal, put it on the internet, I think voting fraud goes way up.  

Overhauling the voting system isn't addressing the actual problems, IMO.  

Did you read the OP?  I do address these issues there.

You're E-Democracy basically is looking to throw out the current system and replace it with some kind of computer-based civics utopia.  It's basically Legislation and Public Policy through Facebook.  

There is one huge issue with your vision.  It leaves out huge chunks of people.  Let's just start with people with low reading comprehension and without the faculties to navigate a computer, let alone a complex cyber-public policy forum.  

Your system would lead to MORE oppression of these types and only bring about more inequality.  
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Cramulus on July 21, 2010, 08:38:22 pm
this thread is moving too fast! I keep hitting post and it's like "9 replies", "13 replies".... zang!

None of this changes the mindset of the voter.  And THAT is the problem.  People can already check a box next to a 3rd party candidate instead of a D or an R.  But people go with the D or the R.  using a ranking system or a runoff system, or approval voting isn't going to change that.  The issue is voter education not the voting system.

I think I have to disagree here. I am politically independent, I've voted both R and D in the past, depending on the election. People tend to go with one party or the other because there's no way for a third party to win under the current system. I hate being strongarmed by people who say "YOU ARE THROWING YOUR VOTE AWAY UNLESS YOU VOTE FOR ONE OF THE TOP 2"... an instant-runoff or approval voting system is better equipped to capture and negate this. You get to make a lot more meaningful choice if your vote has some nuance coded into it.



ANYWAY


going back to the OP, which I see is nicely filled in now...

I can really see the benefit of this system for smaller to midsized organizations. It's hard to say if it'll work on a large scale due to the unpredictable nature of persuasion and charisma. i tend to think this will spawn a second tier of non-elected politicians - People who are able to convincingly say, "You don't understand health care, I do, proxy your vote to me." And to some extent this is good! But this is also why we have a representative democracy, so you don't have to worry about every little bill item. You just elect the guy you trust to vote in a way which supports his constituency.

One thing I'm still a little fuzzy on is the anonymity. I think making everybody's votes public would create a social mess. The secret ballot eliminates peer pressure, which is good because peer pressure favors majority issues.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 21, 2010, 08:38:33 pm
None of this changes the mindset of the voter.  And THAT is the problem.  People can already check a box next to a 3rd party candidate instead of a D or an R.  But people go with the D or the R.  using a ranking system or a runoff system, or approval voting isn't going to change that.  The issue is voter education not the voting system.

Implementing a new voting systems is not the subject of E-Democracy.


And I honestly think the e-democracy idea is rife with issues, starting with the technology.  Voting irregularities are bad enough as it is with people manning polling places.  Make it impersonal, put it on the internet, I think voting fraud goes way up.  

Overhauling the voting system isn't addressing the actual problems, IMO.  

Did you read the OP?  I do address these issues there.

You're E-Democracy basically is looking to throw out the current system and replace it with some kind of computer-based civics utopia.  It's basically Legislation and Public Policy through Facebook.  

There is one huge issue with your vision.  It leaves out huge chunks of people.  Let's just start with people with low reading comprehension and without the faculties to navigate a computer, let alone a complex cyber-public policy forum.  

Your system would lead to MORE oppression of these types and only bring about more inequality.  

Add to that his willingness to allow basic rights to be legislated away, and you arrive at a place that's as dystopian as you could ever want.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 21, 2010, 08:39:05 pm
You didn't explain how threats to the US Constitution is a problem unique to E-Democracy.

It isn't unique.  But your vision would destroy it completely.

Precisely how?


By removal of any safeguards to civil liberties other than the whim of the mob.

See:  Athens, history of.

Okay - so we add a safeguard in the form of a category of constitutional laws, of which the modification of any of those must be deliberated over over a period of four years, with a suitable super-majority.  We place existing civil rights legislation in there, and now E-Democracy is just as safe as the existing system, right?

Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 21, 2010, 08:40:17 pm
One thing I'm still a little fuzzy on is the anonymity. I think making everybody's votes public would create a social mess. The secret ballot eliminates peer pressure, which is good because peer pressure favors majority issues.

Public ballots would create a NIGHTMARE, not a mess.

John Q Public votes against the choice of his employer.  He is later that month mysteriously laid off.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: AFK on July 21, 2010, 08:41:00 pm
The issue is voter education not the voting system.

This is the heart of my argument, as well.

If the problem is that most people 1) don't vote, and 2) pay more attention to style than substance.  Changing how they pick things isn't going to help, if what they pick isn't based upon rational, informed decisions.

This thread isn't ABOUT fixing the problem of uninformed voters, it's about the problems of the voting system itself.  It's naive, or dishonest, to say that the problem lies solely with one or the other.

The biggest problem I'm having here is that everybody seems to think that voters actually LIKE being shunted into one of two vast, nebulous political umbrellas.  

Cynicism fail.

If we can't get past that basic premise, I can't really argue this point.

If people didn't like being shunted they'd invest themselves more in the process.  With the internet it doesn't take anytime at all to find a website that lists the initiatives of a candidate running for office.  If you have three people running you have 3 websites to review.  You compare, find the planks that jive most with your personal world view, and then you check their box.  

It is THAT easy.

The proposed voting systems in the absence of voter education simply allows them to literally make more uninformed choices.  
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 21, 2010, 08:41:35 pm
You didn't explain how threats to the US Constitution is a problem unique to E-Democracy.

It isn't unique.  But your vision would destroy it completely.

Precisely how?


By removal of any safeguards to civil liberties other than the whim of the mob.

See:  Athens, history of.

Okay - so we add a safeguard in the form of a category of constitutional laws, of which the modification of any of those must be deliberated over over a period of four years, with a suitable super-majority.  We place existing civil rights legislation in there, and now E-Democracy is just as safe as the existing system, right?



Sure, until the majority decides to defund schools in Black districts (Blacks making up 13% of the population).
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Adios on July 21, 2010, 08:41:42 pm
You didn't explain how threats to the US Constitution is a problem unique to E-Democracy.

It isn't unique.  But your vision would destroy it completely.

Precisely how?


By removal of any safeguards to civil liberties other than the whim of the mob.

See:  Athens, history of.

Okay - so we add a safeguard in the form of a category of constitutional laws, of which the modification of any of those must be deliberated over over a period of four years, with a suitable super-majority.  We place existing civil rights legislation in there, and now E-Democracy is just as safe as the existing system, right?



Why are you so anxious to undercut civil liberties?
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 21, 2010, 08:42:32 pm
The issue is voter education not the voting system.

This is the heart of my argument, as well.

If the problem is that most people 1) don't vote, and 2) pay more attention to style than substance.  Changing how they pick things isn't going to help, if what they pick isn't based upon rational, informed decisions.

This thread isn't ABOUT fixing the problem of uninformed voters, it's about the problems of the voting system itself.  It's naive, or dishonest, to say that the problem lies solely with one or the other.

The biggest problem I'm having here is that everybody seems to think that voters actually LIKE being shunted into one of two vast, nebulous political umbrellas.  

Cynicism fail.

If we can't get past that basic premise, I can't really argue this point.

If people didn't like being shunted they'd invest themselves more in the process.  With the internet it doesn't take anytime at all to find a website that lists the initiatives of a candidate running for office.  If you have three people running you have 3 websites to review.  You compare, find the planks that jive most with your personal world view, and then you check their box.  

It is THAT easy.

The proposed voting systems in the absence of voter education simply allows them to literally make more uninformed choices.  

Oh, they'll be informed all right.  By people like Glenn Beck, Richard Warren, or Randi Rhodes.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Jasper on July 21, 2010, 08:42:46 pm
The issue is voter education not the voting system.

This is the heart of my argument, as well.

If the problem is that most people 1) don't vote, and 2) pay more attention to style than substance.  Changing how they pick things isn't going to help, if what they pick isn't based upon rational, informed decisions.

This thread isn't ABOUT fixing the problem of uninformed voters, it's about the problems of the voting system itself.  It's naive, or dishonest, to say that the problem lies solely with one or the other.

The biggest problem I'm having here is that everybody seems to think that voters actually LIKE being shunted into one of two vast, nebulous political umbrellas.  

Cynicism fail.

If we can't get past that basic premise, I can't really argue this point.

Simply changing the way uninformed votes are cast is fail. If you are going to rebuild the voting system then it requires a complete rebuild, not just part.

Don't get me wrong, civics is undertaught these days and we don't teach people how to vote with their brains.  That's wrong, and I acknowledge that to actually set things right requires more of an overhaul than simple electoral revamp.  But even that small part of the solution - the election method - will require a great deal of thought, which is why I'm discussing it.  I'm not a visionary world fixer, I just want to see this little change made, because I've given it a lot of thought, and I like it.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: AFK on July 21, 2010, 08:47:55 pm
None of this changes the mindset of the voter.  And THAT is the problem.  People can already check a box next to a 3rd party candidate instead of a D or an R.  But people go with the D or the R.  using a ranking system or a runoff system, or approval voting isn't going to change that.  The issue is voter education not the voting system.

I think I have to disagree here. I am politically independent, I've voted both R and D in the past, depending on the election. People tend to go with one party or the other because there's no way for a third party to win under the current system. I hate being strongarmed by people who say "YOU ARE THROWING YOUR VOTE AWAY UNLESS YOU VOTE FOR ONE OF THE TOP 2"... an instant-runoff or approval voting system is better equipped to capture and negate this. You get to make a lot more meaningful choice if your vote has some nuance coded into it.

What nuance?  All it does is solidify that the R or D who lost the election won second place, and still loses.  It doesn't change the mindframe of the voter to consider 3rd party candidates as viable.  For that you would need to couple with voter education, and, a dramatic downsizing in the DNC and RNC money machines.  

Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Jasper on July 21, 2010, 08:49:56 pm
As stated, IRV strengthens two-party voting when there are more than 3 candidates.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: AFK on July 21, 2010, 08:52:01 pm
Wouldn't that kind of voting system encourage more people to run? 
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: LMNO on July 21, 2010, 08:52:28 pm
Let's look at it this way:

Current Voting System (CVS)
New Voting System (NVS)
Uneducated Electorate (UE)
Educated Electorate (EE)

CVS + EE = Success.
CVS + UE = Failure.
NVS + EE = Success.
NVS + UE = Failure.

In both cases, an educated electorate is much more important than a new way of voting.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Adios on July 21, 2010, 08:53:15 pm
Let's look at it this way:

Current Voting System (CVS)
New Voting System (NVS)
Uneducated Electorate (UE)
Educated Electorate (EE)

CVS + EE = Success.
CVS + UE = Failure.
NVS + EE = Success.
NVS + UE = Failure.

In both cases, an educated electorate is much more important than a new way of voting.

This.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 21, 2010, 08:53:43 pm
You're E-Democracy basically is looking to throw out the current system and replace it with some kind of computer-based civics utopia.  It's basically Legislation and Public Policy through Facebook.  

Facebook, Opensocial, basically as many forms as possible to maximise participation.


There is one huge issue with your vision.  It leaves out huge chunks of people.  Let's just start with people with low reading comprehension and without the faculties to navigate a computer, let alone a complex cyber-public policy forum.  

This was addressed in the OP.  There are organisations with support staff to help such people already.  I do not think it is reasonable to limit the potential of a technology just because unfortunately not everyone can interface with it to the same degree.


Your system would lead to MORE oppression of these types and only bring about more inequality.  

 :|  I don't see how that follows.  The design philosophy is to maximise accessibility and participation.  That's fundamental to any form of E-Democracy.

Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 21, 2010, 08:54:07 pm
Let's look at it this way:

Current Voting System (CVS)
New Voting System (NVS)
Uneducated Electorate (UE)
Educated Electorate (EE)

CVS + EE = Success.
CVS + UE = Failure.
NVS + EE = Success.
NVS + UE = Failure.

In both cases, an educated electorate is much more important than a new way of voting.

Your logic makes Plato cry.  :cry:
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Adios on July 21, 2010, 08:55:36 pm
You're E-Democracy basically is looking to throw out the current system and replace it with some kind of computer-based civics utopia.  It's basically Legislation and Public Policy through Facebook.  

Facebook, Opensocial, basically as many forms as possible to maximise participation.


There is one huge issue with your vision.  It leaves out huge chunks of people.  Let's just start with people with low reading comprehension and without the faculties to navigate a computer, let alone a complex cyber-public policy forum.  

This was addressed in the OP.  There are organisations with support staff to help such people already.  I do not think it is reasonable to limit the potential of a technology just because unfortunately not everyone can interface with it to the same degree.


Your system would lead to MORE oppression of these types and only bring about more inequality.  

 :|  I don't see how that follows.  The design philosophy is to maximise accessibility and participation.  That's fundamental to any form of E-Democracy.



All I need to know. Anarchist.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 21, 2010, 08:56:01 pm
Let's look at it this way:

Current Voting System (CVS)
New Voting System (NVS)
Uneducated Electorate (UE)
Educated Electorate (EE)

CVS + EE = Success.
CVS + UE = Failure.
NVS + EE = Success.
NVS + UE = Failure.

In both cases, an educated electorate is much more important than a new way of voting.

What if the NVS educates the electorate in the process of interacting with it?
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: LMNO on July 21, 2010, 08:56:21 pm
Let's look at it this way:

Current Voting System (CVS)
New Voting System (NVS)
Uneducated Electorate (UE)
Educated Electorate (EE)

CVS + EE = Success.
CVS + UE = Failure.
NVS + EE = Success.
NVS + UE = Failure.

In both cases, an educated electorate is much more important than a new way of voting.

Your logic makes Plato cry.  :cry:

SHUT UP AND GET BACK IN THE CAVE.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: LMNO on July 21, 2010, 08:56:56 pm
Let's look at it this way:

Current Voting System (CVS)
New Voting System (NVS)
Uneducated Electorate (UE)
Educated Electorate (EE)

CVS + EE = Success.
CVS + UE = Failure.
NVS + EE = Success.
NVS + UE = Failure.

In both cases, an educated electorate is much more important than a new way of voting.

What if the NVS educates the electorate in the process of interacting with it?

Go on.  I'm interested, because this would address both issues.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 21, 2010, 08:57:03 pm
You're E-Democracy basically is looking to throw out the current system and replace it with some kind of computer-based civics utopia.  It's basically Legislation and Public Policy through Facebook.  

Facebook, Opensocial, basically as many forms as possible to maximise participation.


There is one huge issue with your vision.  It leaves out huge chunks of people.  Let's just start with people with low reading comprehension and without the faculties to navigate a computer, let alone a complex cyber-public policy forum.  

This was addressed in the OP.  There are organisations with support staff to help such people already.  I do not think it is reasonable to limit the potential of a technology just because unfortunately not everyone can interface with it to the same degree.


Your system would lead to MORE oppression of these types and only bring about more inequality.  

 :|  I don't see how that follows.  The design philosophy is to maximise accessibility and participation.  That's fundamental to any form of E-Democracy.



All I need to know. Anarchist.

Order comes spontaneously through the will of the people, not through oppressive laws that hold them down.






keepastraightfacekeepastraightfacekeepastraightfa cekeepastraightfacekeepastraightface
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 21, 2010, 08:58:08 pm
Let's look at it this way:

Current Voting System (CVS)
New Voting System (NVS)
Uneducated Electorate (UE)
Educated Electorate (EE)

CVS + EE = Success.
CVS + UE = Failure.
NVS + EE = Success.
NVS + UE = Failure.

In both cases, an educated electorate is much more important than a new way of voting.

What if the NVS educates the electorate in the process of interacting with it?

So the system influences the election?
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 21, 2010, 08:59:56 pm
Let's look at it this way:

Current Voting System (CVS)
New Voting System (NVS)
Uneducated Electorate (UE)
Educated Electorate (EE)

CVS + EE = Success.
CVS + UE = Failure.
NVS + EE = Success.
NVS + UE = Failure.

In both cases, an educated electorate is much more important than a new way of voting.

Your logic makes Plato cry.  :cry:

SHUT UP AND GET BACK IN THE CAVE.

Oh, now you've done it.  I'll just be translating "utopia" out of the Greek, now.

"The word comes from the Greek: οὐ, "not", and τόπος, "place", indicating that More was utilizing the concept as allegory and did not consider such an ideal place to be realistically possible."
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: AFK on July 21, 2010, 09:00:14 pm
You're E-Democracy basically is looking to throw out the current system and replace it with some kind of computer-based civics utopia.  It's basically Legislation and Public Policy through Facebook.  

Facebook, Opensocial, basically as many forms as possible to maximise participation.


There is one huge issue with your vision.  It leaves out huge chunks of people.  Let's just start with people with low reading comprehension and without the faculties to navigate a computer, let alone a complex cyber-public policy forum.  

This was addressed in the OP.  There are organisations with support staff to help such people already.  I do not think it is reasonable to limit the potential of a technology just because unfortunately not everyone can interface with it to the same degree.


Your system would lead to MORE oppression of these types and only bring about more inequality.  

 :|  I don't see how that follows.  The design philosophy is to maximise accessibility and participation.  That's fundamental to any form of E-Democracy.

I suggest you work in the social services field for a few year and then you will understand.  I live and work in two cities in Maine that have huge poverty issues.  I guarantee you that if you were able to install your e-democracy, that a huge majority of these people would be left out.  Oh sure, we have a non-profit or two that does some work around literacy.  There's really nothing for computer literacy.  There simply is not any capacity for hooking these people up with what would be necessary to participate in your e-democracy.  They would be left out, left behind, and left without.  

Certainly, the current system is already doing that.  But what you are proposing would put it further out of reach, not closer.  

If you really want to empower people to participate in public policy, raise capital and establish nation-wide programs to engage youth in civics.  Work to make public service as a mandatory part of public school curriculums.  Fuck,  if you could do that, just that, it would be HUGE.  
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 21, 2010, 09:02:18 pm
You're E-Democracy basically is looking to throw out the current system and replace it with some kind of computer-based civics utopia.  It's basically Legislation and Public Policy through Facebook.  

Facebook, Opensocial, basically as many forms as possible to maximise participation.


There is one huge issue with your vision.  It leaves out huge chunks of people.  Let's just start with people with low reading comprehension and without the faculties to navigate a computer, let alone a complex cyber-public policy forum.  

This was addressed in the OP.  There are organisations with support staff to help such people already.  I do not think it is reasonable to limit the potential of a technology just because unfortunately not everyone can interface with it to the same degree.


Your system would lead to MORE oppression of these types and only bring about more inequality.  

 :|  I don't see how that follows.  The design philosophy is to maximise accessibility and participation.  That's fundamental to any form of E-Democracy.



All I need to know. Anarchist.

LET'S THROW OUT KEYBOARDS BECAUSE PEOPLE WITH NO HANDS CAN'T USE THEM AS EASILY!!

LET'S GET RID OF RUNNING SHOES BECAUSE PEOPLE IN WHEELCHAIRS HAVE NO USE FOR AIR-SOLES!!


Can we keep this respectful?
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Adios on July 21, 2010, 09:04:10 pm
You're E-Democracy basically is looking to throw out the current system and replace it with some kind of computer-based civics utopia.  It's basically Legislation and Public Policy through Facebook.  

Facebook, Opensocial, basically as many forms as possible to maximise participation.


There is one huge issue with your vision.  It leaves out huge chunks of people.  Let's just start with people with low reading comprehension and without the faculties to navigate a computer, let alone a complex cyber-public policy forum.  

This was addressed in the OP.  There are organisations with support staff to help such people already.  I do not think it is reasonable to limit the potential of a technology just because unfortunately not everyone can interface with it to the same degree.


Your system would lead to MORE oppression of these types and only bring about more inequality.  

 :|  I don't see how that follows.  The design philosophy is to maximise accessibility and participation.  That's fundamental to any form of E-Democracy.



All I need to know. Anarchist.

LET'S THROW OUT KEYBOARDS BECAUSE PEOPLE WITH NO HANDS CAN'T USE THEM AS EASILY!!

LET'S GET RID OF RUNNING SHOES BECAUSE PEOPLE IN WHEELCHAIRS HAVE NO USE FOR AIR-SOLES!!


Can we keep this respectful?

Sure, as soon as you gain some respect for the Constitution and civil liberties.

Your strike remark are so far off target and context I think I will label them.......STRAWMEN!
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Jasper on July 21, 2010, 09:06:09 pm
Let's look at it this way:

Current Voting System (CVS)
New Voting System (NVS)
Uneducated Electorate (UE)
Educated Electorate (EE)

CVS + EE = Success.
CVS + UE = Failure.
NVS + EE = Success.
NVS + UE = Failure.

In both cases, an educated electorate is much more important than a new way of voting.

Then maybe you should be doing something about it, instead of criticizing the efforts of people who are trying to make the situation better.

And I disagree with your "logic".  With the current system, an educated electorate would not be effective because being educated doesn't mean they'd all join together and overcome the power elite.  No, they'd keep being forced to choose one person at a time and getting nowhere because that person will always get co-opted.

The only way is to change the system so that people who will resist being co-opted stand a chance of getting into office.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 21, 2010, 09:06:59 pm
1.  People are stupid, generally speaking.

2.  Some not-quite-as-stupid people set up a functioning republic so well that it functioned for 220 years despite the stupid people.

3.  Eventually there were so many stupid people that the system began to fail.

4.  The obvious solution is to make it easier for stupid people to directly affect the republic, with no buffers or filters.

Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 21, 2010, 09:07:28 pm
Then maybe you should be doing something about it, instead of criticizing the efforts of people who are trying to make the situation better.


10 yard penalty for unnecessary bitchiness.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 21, 2010, 09:09:48 pm

And I disagree with your "logic".  

Yeah, simple math is full of fail.  What the hell was he thinking?
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Jasper on July 21, 2010, 09:11:20 pm
1.  People are stupid, generally speaking.

2.  Some not-quite-as-stupid people set up a functioning republic so well that it functioned for 220 years despite the stupid people.

3.  Eventually there were so many stupid people that the system began to fail.

4.  The obvious solution is to make it easier for stupid people to directly affect the republic, with no buffers or filters.



For a given value of function.  We've had quite a lot more war than is strictly necessary, we've still got a great deal of poverty, despite being one of the wealthiest nations.  I'm not saying we've failed as a country, but I am saying that "continuing to exist" can't count as unmitigated success.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 21, 2010, 09:12:55 pm
1.  People are stupid, generally speaking.

2.  Some not-quite-as-stupid people set up a functioning republic so well that it functioned for 220 years despite the stupid people.

3.  Eventually there were so many stupid people that the system began to fail.

4.  The obvious solution is to make it easier for stupid people to directly affect the republic, with no buffers or filters.



For a given value of function.  We've had quite a lot more war than is strictly necessary, we've still got a great deal of poverty, despite being one of the wealthiest nations.  I'm not saying we've failed as a country, but I am saying that "continuing to exist" can't count as unmitigated success.

See #4.  Giving stupid people direct democracy will get you stupid results, faster and cheaper than the old way.  I think I can get behind this.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 21, 2010, 09:15:58 pm
Let's look at it this way:

Current Voting System (CVS)
New Voting System (NVS)
Uneducated Electorate (UE)
Educated Electorate (EE)

CVS + EE = Success.
CVS + UE = Failure.
NVS + EE = Success.
NVS + UE = Failure.

In both cases, an educated electorate is much more important than a new way of voting.

What if the NVS educates the electorate in the process of interacting with it?

Go on.  I'm interested, because this would address both issues.

The concept of proxy-voting means that say you have two acquaintances with differing opinions on environmental issues, then you'll be exposed to the competing arguments - if you want to proxy your vote to one of them and make the best decision, then that's a motivating force to learn a little more about the subject matter.  Most of the time I just glance over many issues because I have no way, however small, of making a meaningful difference, so there is no reason to learn any more of the details, right?

Humans are competitive, if we could harness just a fraction of the cognitive energy that goes into Farmville, then there is huge potential there to educate ourselves.

In addition, I remain uneducated about a host of issues because I make no actions in relation to them which have any measurable consequences.  I fully believe that with a system of E-Democracy as described, there would be some horrific resolutions passed.  This would not be without consequences for the individuals who were in support.  With a streamlined process of repeal, I think the actual damage caused would be minimal, but it would cause people to think twice next time.

That's education the hard way, but I can't think of any way which is more feasible.

Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 21, 2010, 09:20:07 pm
I can.  Make it physically painful to vote.  Maybe the lever shocks you or something.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Jasper on July 21, 2010, 09:22:35 pm
1.  People are stupid, generally speaking.

2.  Some not-quite-as-stupid people set up a functioning republic so well that it functioned for 220 years despite the stupid people.

3.  Eventually there were so many stupid people that the system began to fail.

4.  The obvious solution is to make it easier for stupid people to directly affect the republic, with no buffers or filters.



For a given value of function.  We've had quite a lot more war than is strictly necessary, we've still got a great deal of poverty, despite being one of the wealthiest nations.  I'm not saying we've failed as a country, but I am saying that "continuing to exist" can't count as unmitigated success.

See #4.  Giving stupid people direct democracy will get you stupid results, faster and cheaper than the old way.  I think I can get behind this.

You keep bringing up direct democracy, when I've never given any indication that that is what I'm proposing.  I almost didn't notice you doing that.  I'd rather you not contrive my positions to be ones you can disprove more easily, thanks.  When did I say that representative democracy is not the answer?

Because I thought I was talking about a way to elect candidates, otherwise known as representative democracy.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 21, 2010, 09:23:42 pm
1.  People are stupid, generally speaking.

2.  Some not-quite-as-stupid people set up a functioning republic so well that it functioned for 220 years despite the stupid people.

3.  Eventually there were so many stupid people that the system began to fail.

4.  The obvious solution is to make it easier for stupid people to directly affect the republic, with no buffers or filters.



For a given value of function.  We've had quite a lot more war than is strictly necessary, we've still got a great deal of poverty, despite being one of the wealthiest nations.  I'm not saying we've failed as a country, but I am saying that "continuing to exist" can't count as unmitigated success.

See #4.  Giving stupid people direct democracy will get you stupid results, faster and cheaper than the old way.  I think I can get behind this.

You keep bringing up direct democracy, when I've never given any indication that that is what I'm proposing.  I almost didn't notice you doing that.  I'd rather you not contrive my positions to be ones you can disprove more easily, thanks.  When did I say that representative democracy is not the answer?

Because I thought I was talking about a way to elect candidates, otherwise known as representative democracy.

My bad, there's been a lot of conflation between the two concepts.  I was mostly referring to CU's ideas on legislating rights away.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 21, 2010, 09:25:24 pm
There is one huge issue with your vision.  It leaves out huge chunks of people.  Let's just start with people with low reading comprehension and without the faculties to navigate a computer, let alone a complex cyber-public policy forum.  

This was addressed in the OP.  There are organisations with support staff to help such people already.  I do not think it is reasonable to limit the potential of a technology just because unfortunately not everyone can interface with it to the same degree.

All I need to know. Anarchist.

LET'S THROW OUT KEYBOARDS BECAUSE PEOPLE WITH NO HANDS CAN'T USE THEM AS EASILY!!

LET'S GET RID OF RUNNING SHOES BECAUSE PEOPLE IN WHEELCHAIRS HAVE NO USE FOR AIR-SOLES!!


Can we keep this respectful?

Sure, as soon as you gain some respect for the Constitution and civil liberties.

I respect them just fine, thank you, where did I say I didn't?


Your strike remark are so far off target and context I think I will label them.......STRAWMEN!

I could say the same about the "anarchist" insult.  I have no idea where you got that from.

Certain people who are disadvantaged will be unable to use an E-Democracy system, until the time that such a system is able to put in facilities in place to ensure that they are able to maximise their participation.  So thinking that this is not a sufficient reason to abandon the idea altogether somehow makes me an anarchist?!
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 21, 2010, 09:26:34 pm

Certain people who are disadvantaged will be unable to use an E-Democracy system, until the time that such a system is able to put in facilities in place to ensure that they are able to maximise their participation. 

Which means those facilities will never, ever be put in place.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: AFK on July 21, 2010, 09:27:32 pm
Let's look at it this way:

Current Voting System (CVS)
New Voting System (NVS)
Uneducated Electorate (UE)
Educated Electorate (EE)

CVS + EE = Success.
CVS + UE = Failure.
NVS + EE = Success.
NVS + UE = Failure.

In both cases, an educated electorate is much more important than a new way of voting.

Then maybe you should be doing something about it, instead of criticizing the efforts of people who are trying to make the situation better.

And I disagree with your "logic".  With the current system, an educated electorate would not be effective because being educated doesn't mean they'd all join together and overcome the power elite.  No, they'd keep being forced to choose one person at a time and getting nowhere because that person will always get co-opted.

The only way is to change the system so that people who will resist being co-opted stand a chance of getting into office.

Hmm, what guarantees do you have that these 3rd party types will not get co-opted?  

People making more informed choices is the best situation.  Ultimately, it could be that as people are informed, they still make the same choices.  You may still disagree with the ultimate outcome if you naturally occupy the minority voice in the populace.  
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: AFK on July 21, 2010, 09:30:12 pm
There is one huge issue with your vision.  It leaves out huge chunks of people.  Let's just start with people with low reading comprehension and without the faculties to navigate a computer, let alone a complex cyber-public policy forum.  

This was addressed in the OP.  There are organisations with support staff to help such people already.  I do not think it is reasonable to limit the potential of a technology just because unfortunately not everyone can interface with it to the same degree.

All I need to know. Anarchist.

LET'S THROW OUT KEYBOARDS BECAUSE PEOPLE WITH NO HANDS CAN'T USE THEM AS EASILY!!

LET'S GET RID OF RUNNING SHOES BECAUSE PEOPLE IN WHEELCHAIRS HAVE NO USE FOR AIR-SOLES!!


Can we keep this respectful?

Sure, as soon as you gain some respect for the Constitution and civil liberties.

I respect them just fine, thank you, where did I say I didn't?


Your strike remark are so far off target and context I think I will label them.......STRAWMEN!

I could say the same about the "anarchist" insult.  I have no idea where you got that from.

Certain people who are disadvantaged will be unable to use an E-Democracy system, until the time that such a system is able to put in facilities in place to ensure that they are able to maximise their participation.  So thinking that this is not a sufficient reason to abandon the idea altogether somehow makes me an anarchist?!


No.  But I think it shows your inexperience with the disadvantaged.  That's not meant as an insult but as an honest commentary and critique of your idea. 
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Jasper on July 21, 2010, 09:30:48 pm
What I'm referring to is that, with Approval voting, it would be possible for an uncompromisingly principled candidate to have a chance at office, thereby dodging the failures of most presidents to stick with what they said they'd do because of back-room deals.

Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 21, 2010, 09:31:15 pm
What I'm referring to is that, with Approval voting, it would be possible for an uncompromisingly principled candidate to have a chance at office, thereby dodging the failures of most presidents to stick with what they said they'd do because of back-room deals.



What a hideous notion.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Jasper on July 21, 2010, 09:35:16 pm
If a candidate says "I'll work to fix X Y and Z" in his campaign, the hope is that he actually exerts his influence to do it.  Mainstream candidates don't really have a lot of incentive to do so.

Incidentally, congress needs a fucking reorg too.  Why do Dems and Reps get the whole thing?
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 21, 2010, 09:39:10 pm
If a candidate says "I'll work to fix X Y and Z" in his campaign, the hope is that he actually exerts his influence to do it.  Mainstream candidates don't really have a lot of incentive to do so.

Incidentally, congress needs a fucking reorg too.  Why do Dems and Reps get the whole thing?

Uncompromising isn't actually a good quality in a candidate.

And they get the whole thing because that's how people voted.  There are plenty of libertarian candidates for congress, for example, among the other parties out there.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_political_parties_in_the_United_States

But nobody elects them.  Why?  Possibly because of brainwashing, but another possibility is that just because the 3rd parties are funnier, doesn't mean they're better.

Duverger's Law.  No exceptions.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Jasper on July 21, 2010, 09:42:25 pm
All Duverger said was that plurality votes favor two party systems.  And I agree. 

I hate two party systems.   They make it really easy for rich people to stay in control.  MONKEY INNA MIDDLE!
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 21, 2010, 09:45:08 pm
All Duverger said was that plurality votes favor two party systems.  And I agree. 

I hate two party systems.   They make it really easy for rich people to stay in control.  MONKEY INNA MIDDLE!

Well, there's always the ANP.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 21, 2010, 09:45:39 pm
I was mostly referring to CU's ideas on legislating rights away.

 :?


Certain people who are disadvantaged will be unable to use an E-Democracy system, until the time that such a system is able to put in facilities in place to ensure that they are able to maximise their participation. 

Which means those facilities will never, ever be put in place.

So charities and organisations who currently enable such people to vote and participate in democracy will suddenly throw in the towel and give up?

Besides all they need to do is proxy their vote once to a charity or organisation which best supports their goals, and if they want to increase their participation, they'll improve their facilities in that way by choosing a proxy which is committed to that goal.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 21, 2010, 09:46:25 pm
So charities and organisations who currently enable such people to vote and participate in democracy will suddenly throw in the towel and give up?

Annnnnd we wander off into libertarianism.   :lulz:
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Jasper on July 21, 2010, 09:47:22 pm
All Duverger said was that plurality votes favor two party systems.  And I agree. 

I hate two party systems.   They make it really easy for rich people to stay in control.  MONKEY INNA MIDDLE!

Well, there's always the ANP.

....  Glad we had this talk.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 21, 2010, 09:48:10 pm
So charities and organisations who currently enable such people to vote and participate in democracy will suddenly throw in the towel and give up?

Annnnnd we wander off into libertarianism.   :lulz:

I don't get it.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 21, 2010, 09:48:27 pm
All Duverger said was that plurality votes favor two party systems.  And I agree. 

I hate two party systems.   They make it really easy for rich people to stay in control.  MONKEY INNA MIDDLE!

Well, there's always the ANP.

....  Glad we had this talk.

 :lulz:
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 21, 2010, 09:50:19 pm
So charities and organisations who currently enable such people to vote and participate in democracy will suddenly throw in the towel and give up?

Annnnnd we wander off into libertarianism.   :lulz:

I don't get it.

Charities are also their answer for making sure disadvantaged people don't get shot, stabbed, starved, or die off from treatable illnesses.

If you're suggesting that charities are good things, I'm with you.

If you suggest that charities should be relied on to make sure everyone gets the chance to vote, I'm gonna have to do the Andre Moreau dance.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 21, 2010, 10:11:29 pm
I can really see the benefit of this system for smaller to midsized organizations. It's hard to say if it'll work on a large scale due to the unpredictable nature of persuasion and charisma. i tend to think this will spawn a second tier of non-elected politicians - People who are able to convincingly say, "You don't understand health care, I do, proxy your vote to me." And to some extent this is good! But this is also why we have a representative democracy, so you don't have to worry about every little bill item. You just elect the guy you trust to vote in a way which supports his constituency.

Yes, and I'm sure it'll be unpredictable to the extent that people will be competing and trying to game the system.  The feedback mechanism - the fact that people are held accountable by the record of their bad votes is intended to regulate that.

Will this tier of non-elected politicians be "sponsored" by corporations?  I'm sure they'll try.  But if you can change your proxy vote on a whim, then it's not like you're held hostage for a few years at a time.


One thing I'm still a little fuzzy on is the anonymity. I think making everybody's votes public would create a social mess. The secret ballot eliminates peer pressure, which is good because peer pressure favors majority issues.

Public ballots would create a NIGHTMARE, not a mess.

John Q Public votes against the choice of his employer.  He is later that month mysteriously laid off.

Yeah, this is definitely a problem I'd rather avoid.  If there was a way to have anonymous voting, which could not be tampered with and corrupted by the trusted authority tallying the votes, then I think it'd be a no-brainer.

I do think the peer-pressure issue would be reduced by the fact that individuals inhabit multiple contradictory groups, so it's a given that you'd quite often vote against the wishes of one of them.  What happens in a situation like that though?  Do the majority of groups become more partisan, or because it's a widespread phenomenon, do they become more tolerant?  The people in highly-partisan groups would find themselves somewhat alienated, and I think that'd be an inhibitory factor, but I don't know for sure.

Implicit in these calculations is the fact that this will change social mores, the question is how, what is more likely?
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Jasper on July 21, 2010, 10:11:50 pm
But nobody elects them.  Why?  Possibly because of brainwashing, but another possibility is that just because the 3rd parties are funnier, doesn't mean they're better.

Duverger's Law.  No exceptions.

I dunno though.  Is the green party really that hysterical compared to dems or repubs?
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 21, 2010, 10:23:48 pm
So charities and organisations who currently enable such people to vote and participate in democracy will suddenly throw in the towel and give up?

Annnnnd we wander off into libertarianism.   :lulz:

I don't get it.

Charities are also their answer for making sure disadvantaged people don't get shot, stabbed, starved, or die off from treatable illnesses.

If you're suggesting that charities are good things, I'm with you.

If you suggest that charities should be relied on to make sure everyone gets the chance to vote, I'm gonna have to do the Andre Moreau dance.

Oh god no.  For people who have no computer, there are public internet services such as in libraries.  For people with disabilities who need help doing everyday tasks, then of course they'll have to rely on their existing care-giver to participate in an E-Democracy system.

They may not be able to participate to the same extent the vast majority can, but there will many people or organisations who they can choose to proxy their vote to, who will support their main agenda.

They could form a powerful bloc in this way.  To screw them over though, the majority will have to make a conscious choice to do so.  The majority will have to vote against the issues raised requesting more support and services than below the bare minimum they have now.  I really don't see that happening.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 21, 2010, 10:34:31 pm
I think what Dok may be getting at (and if he isn't, then I certainly am) is that it doesn't really matter how you vote for something if a system is already in place to make certain that some candidates are more viable than others, based upon factors other than their ideas and competence.

That is to say, corporate money.

The nice thing about approval voting in our era is that, with the internet, this system would level the playing field with corporate shills and would-be dark horse candidates.  

I expect I'll live to see the day when we don't have political parties.

A fine sentiment, but it's not enough to say "the future will fix everything".  What we need are nuts-and-bolts solutions, not high-concept voting technology.

If you don't have shills and limit corporate interference, then political parties start to wither.  If you unbundle individual resolutions from mammoth pieces of legislation then 95% of the content can be agreed upon and the partisan bickering over the 5% becomes an irrelevant sideshow because it no longer stops anything from happening.

A system of E-Democracy, such as the one I describe in the OP, will consign parties to the pages of political history for these reasons.

Remember - to achieve this, we only need about 200 people who are working together and who believe in the goal.  Metagovernment has half that number already.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 21, 2010, 10:38:19 pm
Do the majority of groups become more partisan, or because it's a widespread phenomenon, do they become more tolerant? 

You don't need a majority of groups to become more partisan, to have a huge fucking mess.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 21, 2010, 10:39:20 pm
If you don't have shills and limit corporate interference, then political parties start to wither. 

Balls.  Parties were doing just fine in the early USA, before corporations became prominent.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 21, 2010, 10:40:32 pm
But nobody elects them.  Why?  Possibly because of brainwashing, but another possibility is that just because the 3rd parties are funnier, doesn't mean they're better.

Duverger's Law.  No exceptions.

I dunno though.  Is the green party really that hysterical compared to dems or repubs?

Yes, actually.  They couldn't get 5% for matching funds, so they threw a tantrum and attacked the dems nonstop.  They are in fact why George W Bush gained office in the first place, as Nader pulled enough of the liberal vote to tip the balance.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 21, 2010, 10:43:47 pm
They could form a powerful bloc in this way.  To screw them over though, the majority will have to make a conscious choice to do so.  The majority will have to vote against the issues raised requesting more support and services than below the bare minimum they have now.  I really don't see that happening.

I bet you don't see people voting against, say, school funding, either.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Jasper on July 21, 2010, 10:44:26 pm
That's dumb.

Oh, just thought of something.  Someone stop me if this has been tried.

Hold a vote like normal, and any party that gets more than 10% (or some reasonable number) of the vote gets a proportional showing in congress.

Interesting idea?
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 21, 2010, 10:46:52 pm
If you don't have shills and limit corporate interference, then political parties start to wither. 

Balls.  Parties were doing just fine in the early USA, before corporations became prominent.

I don't know this period of history - were they without benefactors or other sources of finance?

I can totally see a good reason for having a party to represent and nourish an ideology you favour, especially when that is the voters best way to influence direction.  In an E-Democracy system, that motivation is lessened.  You can have groups which support specific causes, and dole out your support as best to represent your wishes.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 21, 2010, 10:47:50 pm
That's dumb.

Oh, just thought of something.  Someone stop me if this has been tried.

Hold a vote like normal, and any party that gets more than 10% (or some reasonable number) of the vote gets a proportional showing in congress.

Interesting idea?

Proportional representation?
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Jasper on July 21, 2010, 10:50:20 pm
Oh, hm.

UK has it, and look how great they have it.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 21, 2010, 10:52:35 pm
They could form a powerful bloc in this way.  To screw them over though, the majority will have to make a conscious choice to do so.  The majority will have to vote against the issues raised requesting more support and services than below the bare minimum they have now.  I really don't see that happening.

I bet you don't see people voting against, say, school funding, either.

Well it's one benefit over anonymous voting at least - there is more motivation to do what you know is the right thing and less to line your own pockets.

There are a bunch of game-theory based psychological tests on this subject - give players the option to screw each other over anonymously for $10 at a time and they'll jump on it.  But as soon as you tell them that their choices won't be anonymous, they'll switch to cooperative mutually-beneficial choices, even if it means they get less money.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Jasper on July 21, 2010, 10:55:42 pm
There's still the issue of people getting shafted for believing the wrong things, though.  How do you propose to deal with that?
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 21, 2010, 10:56:04 pm
They could form a powerful bloc in this way.  To screw them over though, the majority will have to make a conscious choice to do so.  The majority will have to vote against the issues raised requesting more support and services than below the bare minimum they have now.  I really don't see that happening.

I bet you don't see people voting against, say, school funding, either.

Well it's one benefit over anonymous voting at least - there is more motivation to do what you know is the right thing and less to line your own pockets.

There are a bunch of game-theory based psychological tests on this subject - give players the option to screw each other over anonymously for $10 at a time and they'll jump on it.  But as soon as you tell them that their choices won't be anonymous, they'll switch to cooperative mutually-beneficial choices, even if it means they get less money.

And then they get laid off by their childless boss.   :)
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 21, 2010, 10:58:29 pm
There's still the issue of people getting shafted for believing the wrong things, though.  How do you propose to deal with that?

Do the majority of groups become more partisan, or because it's a widespread phenomenon, do they become more tolerant? 

You don't need a majority of groups to become more partisan, to have a huge fucking mess.

Starting back from here (http://www.principiadiscordia.com/forum/index.php?topic=25822.msg900285#msg900285) do you mind if we work through the details on this one?

I'm not sure what to think of this issue - I'm not fully convinced by my arguments, but if you could address them I might be more inclined to reach your conclusion.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 21, 2010, 11:03:16 pm
There's still the issue of people getting shafted for believing the wrong things, though.  How do you propose to deal with that?

Do the majority of groups become more partisan, or because it's a widespread phenomenon, do they become more tolerant? 

You don't need a majority of groups to become more partisan, to have a huge fucking mess.

Starting back from here (http://www.principiadiscordia.com/forum/index.php?topic=25822.msg900285#msg900285) do you mind if we work through the details on this one?

I'm not sure what to think of this issue - I'm not fully convinced by my arguments, but if you could address them I might be more inclined to reach your conclusion.

Okay, let's just look at it from a numbers game.  There are 1 billion Muslims in the world, and less than a million Muslim terrorists.  So there's less than .001 pissed off Muslims, and they're causing no end of trouble.

A minority can cause all manner of shit.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Jasper on July 21, 2010, 11:04:39 pm
Well, you could just keep the voting records secret, and give people the option to make their votes public.  I can't see anything going horribly wrong with that.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Adios on July 21, 2010, 11:04:52 pm
There is one huge issue with your vision.  It leaves out huge chunks of people.  Let's just start with people with low reading comprehension and without the faculties to navigate a computer, let alone a complex cyber-public policy forum.  

This was addressed in the OP.  There are organisations with support staff to help such people already.  I do not think it is reasonable to limit the potential of a technology just because unfortunately not everyone can interface with it to the same degree.

All I need to know. Anarchist.

LET'S THROW OUT KEYBOARDS BECAUSE PEOPLE WITH NO HANDS CAN'T USE THEM AS EASILY!!

LET'S GET RID OF RUNNING SHOES BECAUSE PEOPLE IN WHEELCHAIRS HAVE NO USE FOR AIR-SOLES!!


Can we keep this respectful?

Sure, as soon as you gain some respect for the Constitution and civil liberties.

I respect them just fine, thank you, where did I say I didn't?


Your strike remark are so far off target and context I think I will label them.......STRAWMEN!

I could say the same about the "anarchist" insult.  I have no idea where you got that from.

Certain people who are disadvantaged will be unable to use an E-Democracy system, until the time that such a system is able to put in facilities in place to ensure that they are able to maximise their participation.  So thinking that this is not a sufficient reason to abandon the idea altogether somehow makes me an anarchist?!


You have constantly showed a lack of respect for existing by wanting to bring up throwing rule of law, like that could actually be voted away. This also indicates a total lack of knowledge as to exactly how our system works.

By eliminating a large segment of the population from the process because it doesn't fit your ideal of E-Democracy does indeed make you an anarchist by simple definition.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 21, 2010, 11:08:02 pm
Actually, it makes him an oligarchist.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Jasper on July 21, 2010, 11:12:48 pm
I don't think that's his position.  CU mentioned that people who didn't have access to the technology would be able to access it with libraries and other free services.  As for voting away the rule of law, I think he was just ceding that, if enough people banded together to change the law, they could make any change they liked.  And, as far as I am aware that is, in theory, true - although unlikely since it's obviously not smart to abandon rule of law.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 21, 2010, 11:14:21 pm
As for voting away the rule of law, I think he was just ceding that, if enough people banded together to change the law, they could make any change they liked. 

Not under the current system.  No popular vote can affect the constitution.

Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Adios on July 21, 2010, 11:14:48 pm
Actually, it makes him an oligarchist.

Point taken.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Adios on July 21, 2010, 11:15:56 pm
I don't think that's his position.  CU mentioned that people who didn't have access to the technology would be able to access it with libraries and other free services.  As for voting away the rule of law, I think he was just ceding that, if enough people banded together to change the law, they could make any change they liked.  And, as far as I am aware that is, in theory, true - although unlikely since it's obviously not smart to abandon rule of law.

That gave me a hairball.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Jasper on July 21, 2010, 11:16:38 pm
As for voting away the rule of law, I think he was just ceding that, if enough people banded together to change the law, they could make any change they liked.

Not under the current system.  No popular vote can affect the constitution.



Ah.   That's probably for the best, then.

CU:  Would your system change that?
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Jasper on July 21, 2010, 11:18:20 pm
I don't think that's his position.  CU mentioned that people who didn't have access to the technology would be able to access it with libraries and other free services. As for voting away the rule of law, I think he was just ceding that, if enough people banded together to change the law, they could make any change they liked.  And, as far as I am aware that is, in theory, true - although unlikely since it's obviously not smart to abandon rule of law.

That gave me a hairball.

Okay, we get it.  You're like 400 YEARS OLD and I should get off your lawn and turn off my rock music.  Can we have a political discussion now?
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Adios on July 21, 2010, 11:23:58 pm
I don't think that's his position.  CU mentioned that people who didn't have access to the technology would be able to access it with libraries and other free services. As for voting away the rule of law, I think he was just ceding that, if enough people banded together to change the law, they could make any change they liked.  And, as far as I am aware that is, in theory, true - although unlikely since it's obviously not smart to abandon rule of law.

That gave me a hairball.

Okay, we get it.  You're like 400 YEARS OLD and I should get off your lawn and turn off my rock music.  Can we have a political discussion now?

I'll break it down for you kid.
These people will never get those services you tend to tout. Why? Because not enough people are willing to give of themselves to make it happen. They are already the Lost Tribe of America™. What? Did you actually think for a second we take care of our own?  Surely you are not that naive. The attitude among the younger crowd here who grew up with technology is that if you don't have it then that is your fault. You want to overlook those who never had it and are unable to learn to deal with it.

As far as the rest of your response, come over to my lawn. We will imbibe and talk. Bring your rock music and we can play mine as well. But, on the other hand nice way to dismiss me because I am old.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 21, 2010, 11:27:25 pm
Well, you could just keep the voting records secret, and give people the option to make their votes public.  I can't see anything going horribly wrong with that.

Say a popular vote runs A=45%, B=55% as tallied by my central computer.  I switch that to A=51%, B=49%, well within polling error, and I return your true vote if you request to make it public.  How would you prove that I've been fabricating results without requiring everyone to make their votes public?


I don't think that's his position.  CU mentioned that people who didn't have access to the technology would be able to access it with libraries and other free services. As for voting away the rule of law, I think he was just ceding that, if enough people banded together to change the law, they could make any change they liked.  And, as far as I am aware that is, in theory, true - although unlikely since it's obviously not smart to abandon rule of law.

That gave me a hairball.

Okay - is there any form of E-Democracy that wouldn't give you a hairball?


As for voting away the rule of law, I think he was just ceding that, if enough people banded together to change the law, they could make any change they liked.

Not under the current system.  No popular vote can affect the constitution.



Ah.   That's probably for the best, then.

CU:  Would your system change that?

No - the system I describe would be used initially to elect leaders into existing institutions and feed them the will of the public.  Only once the public had proved itself to act responsibly (i.e. not irrational mob rule), would any serious discussions take place about dismantling existing safeguards.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Adios on July 21, 2010, 11:29:38 pm



I don't think that's his position.  CU mentioned that people who didn't have access to the technology would be able to access it with libraries and other free services. As for voting away the rule of law, I think he was just ceding that, if enough people banded together to change the law, they could make any change they liked.  And, as far as I am aware that is, in theory, true - although unlikely since it's obviously not smart to abandon rule of law.

That gave me a hairball.

Okay - is there any form of E-Democracy that wouldn't give you a hairball?



Yes. One that was all inclusive and unbiased. Got one?
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Jasper on July 21, 2010, 11:35:32 pm
I don't think that's his position.  CU mentioned that people who didn't have access to the technology would be able to access it with libraries and other free services. As for voting away the rule of law, I think he was just ceding that, if enough people banded together to change the law, they could make any change they liked.  And, as far as I am aware that is, in theory, true - although unlikely since it's obviously not smart to abandon rule of law.

That gave me a hairball.

Okay, we get it.  You're like 400 YEARS OLD and I should get off your lawn and turn off my rock music.  Can we have a political discussion now?

I'll break it down for you kid.
These people will never get those services you tend to tout. Why? Because not enough people are willing to give of themselves to make it happen. They are already the Lost Tribe of America™. What? Did you actually think for a second we take care of our own?  Surely you are not that naive. The attitude among the younger crowd here who grew up with technology is that if you don't have it then that is your fault. You want to overlook those who never had it and are unable to learn to deal with it.

As far as the rest of your response, come over to my lawn. We will imbibe and talk. Bring your rock music and we can play mine as well. But, on the other hand nice way to dismiss me because I am old.

Just teasing!  I only did it because I'm looking for concrete discussion, and glib/grumpy posts get in the way.  I may not have the benefit of your experiences, but I'm learning with the dialogues here.

At any rate, I'm not about to start arguing for CU's e-democracy.  It's not my cross to bear.  I'm just trying to help him clarify his points so that the discussion bears fruit.  Like so-

As for voting away the rule of law, I think he was just ceding that, if enough people banded together to change the law, they could make any change they liked.

Not under the current system.  No popular vote can affect the constitution.



Ah.   That's probably for the best, then.

CU:  Would your system change that?

No - the system I describe would be used initially to elect leaders into existing institutions and feed them the will of the public.  Only once the public had proved itself to act responsibly (i.e. not irrational mob rule), would any serious discussions take place about dismantling existing safeguards.

Okay, that makes more sense than what it sounded like - and it sounded a lot like replacing the legislative branch with twitter.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Adios on July 21, 2010, 11:40:00 pm
I don't think that's his position.  CU mentioned that people who didn't have access to the technology would be able to access it with libraries and other free services. As for voting away the rule of law, I think he was just ceding that, if enough people banded together to change the law, they could make any change they liked.  And, as far as I am aware that is, in theory, true - although unlikely since it's obviously not smart to abandon rule of law.

That gave me a hairball.

Okay, we get it.  You're like 400 YEARS OLD and I should get off your lawn and turn off my rock music.  Can we have a political discussion now?

I'll break it down for you kid.
These people will never get those services you tend to tout. Why? Because not enough people are willing to give of themselves to make it happen. They are already the Lost Tribe of America™. What? Did you actually think for a second we take care of our own?  Surely you are not that naive. The attitude among the younger crowd here who grew up with technology is that if you don't have it then that is your fault. You want to overlook those who never had it and are unable to learn to deal with it.

As far as the rest of your response, come over to my lawn. We will imbibe and talk. Bring your rock music and we can play mine as well. But, on the other hand nice way to dismiss me because I am old.

Just teasing!  I only did it because I'm looking for concrete discussion, and glib/grumpy posts get in the way.  I may not have the benefit of your experiences, but I'm learning with the dialogues here.

At any rate, I'm not about to start arguing for CU's e-democracy.  It's not my cross to bear.  I'm just trying to help him clarify his points so that the discussion bears fruit.  Like so-

As for voting away the rule of law, I think he was just ceding that, if enough people banded together to change the law, they could make any change they liked.

Not under the current system.  No popular vote can affect the constitution.



Ah.   That's probably for the best, then.

CU:  Would your system change that?

No - the system I describe would be used initially to elect leaders into existing institutions and feed them the will of the public.  Only once the public had proved itself to act responsibly (i.e. not irrational mob rule), would any serious discussions take place about dismantling existing safeguards.

Okay, that makes more sense than what it sounded like - and it sounded a lot like replacing the legislative branch with twitter.

It still sounds like a twitter response to me.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Jasper on July 21, 2010, 11:45:36 pm
At least it wouldn't be able to trash the country in a single afternoon.  That's an improvement, right?
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Adios on July 21, 2010, 11:47:05 pm
At least it wouldn't be able to trash the country in a single afternoon.  That's an improvement, right?

Are you sure?
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 21, 2010, 11:49:19 pm



I don't think that's his position.  CU mentioned that people who didn't have access to the technology would be able to access it with libraries and other free services. As for voting away the rule of law, I think he was just ceding that, if enough people banded together to change the law, they could make any change they liked.  And, as far as I am aware that is, in theory, true - although unlikely since it's obviously not smart to abandon rule of law.

That gave me a hairball.

Okay - is there any form of E-Democracy that wouldn't give you a hairball?



Yes. One that was all inclusive and unbiased. Got one?

I can't think of a form of E-Democracy which is more inclusive, and is less biased - what would you suggest?
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Adios on July 21, 2010, 11:50:35 pm



I don't think that's his position.  CU mentioned that people who didn't have access to the technology would be able to access it with libraries and other free services. As for voting away the rule of law, I think he was just ceding that, if enough people banded together to change the law, they could make any change they liked.  And, as far as I am aware that is, in theory, true - although unlikely since it's obviously not smart to abandon rule of law.

That gave me a hairball.

Okay - is there any form of E-Democracy that wouldn't give you a hairball?



Yes. One that was all inclusive and unbiased. Got one?

I can't think of a form of E-Democracy which is more inclusive, and is less biased - what would you suggest?

Wow. You are willing to dismiss an entire part of the population with a stroke and this is your response?
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Jasper on July 21, 2010, 11:50:50 pm
I'm more sure than I was a while ago.  That's not to say I'd set it loose on a voting district though.

I'd be interested to see how well it worked for a company or school though.  Something relatively trivial at first.  Smaller electorates.  If people are happy with it by then, I'll be impressed.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Adios on July 21, 2010, 11:52:46 pm
I'm more sure than I was a while ago.  That's not to say I'd set it loose on a voting district though.

I'd be interested to see how well it worked for a company or school though.  Something relatively trivial at first.  Smaller electorates.  If people are happy with it by then, I'll be impressed.

I will agree it would be interesting to see mock results.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Jasper on July 21, 2010, 11:53:41 pm
CU -

When do you think something like this will be available for testing?
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 22, 2010, 12:08:05 am



I don't think that's his position.  CU mentioned that people who didn't have access to the technology would be able to access it with libraries and other free services. As for voting away the rule of law, I think he was just ceding that, if enough people banded together to change the law, they could make any change they liked.  And, as far as I am aware that is, in theory, true - although unlikely since it's obviously not smart to abandon rule of law.

That gave me a hairball.

Okay - is there any form of E-Democracy that wouldn't give you a hairball?



Yes. One that was all inclusive and unbiased. Got one?

I can't think of a form of E-Democracy which is more inclusive, and is less biased - what would you suggest?

Wow. You are willing to dismiss an entire part of the population with a stroke and this is your response?

How am I dismissing them?  The solution I've suggested gives them equal or better representation than they currently have.  E-Democracy requires access to the internet - you're dodging the challenge I gave you to suggest a form which is more inclusive and less biased than the one I've described.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Adios on July 22, 2010, 12:10:56 am



I don't think that's his position.  CU mentioned that people who didn't have access to the technology would be able to access it with libraries and other free services. As for voting away the rule of law, I think he was just ceding that, if enough people banded together to change the law, they could make any change they liked.  And, as far as I am aware that is, in theory, true - although unlikely since it's obviously not smart to abandon rule of law.

That gave me a hairball.

Okay - is there any form of E-Democracy that wouldn't give you a hairball?



Yes. One that was all inclusive and unbiased. Got one?

I can't think of a form of E-Democracy which is more inclusive, and is less biased - what would you suggest?

Wow. You are willing to dismiss an entire part of the population with a stroke and this is your response?

How am I dismissing them?  The solution I've suggested gives them equal or better representation than they currently have.  E-Democracy requires access to the internet - you're dodging the challenge I gave you to suggest a form which is more inclusive and less biased than the one I've described.


I am dodging nothing. You are the one ignoring the computer illiteracy of millions. The current system offers these people a better opportunity than your proposed system.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 22, 2010, 12:12:50 am
CU -

When do you think something like this will be available for testing?

Votorola (http://zelea.com/project/votorola/home.xht) seems furthest along.  But there are a whole bunch of projects (http://metagovernment.org/wiki/Main_Page) in various stages of testing.  Mostly they differ in philosophy or design and are aimed at different scales of governance.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 22, 2010, 12:18:14 am
I am dodging nothing. You are the one ignoring the computer illiteracy of millions. The current system offers these people a better opportunity than your proposed system.

Sure you're dodging it.  You've got plenty of criticism, but repeatedly fail to come up with one suggestion with regards how an E-Democracy system could provide greater opportunities for participation to the computer illiterate, than the one I've described.

You say it's possible, you chastise me for it, yet when I ask you to describe how it could be improved upon - you've got nothing.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Jasper on July 22, 2010, 12:21:00 am
The virtual paraliment seems like an interesting idea.  It reminds me of Ender's Game.  Remember the forums that Ender's siblings talked on to influence politics?  It seems like this is that thing.

But, like the book, I don't see a thing like that working directly with citizens.  It would be too noisy.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Adios on July 22, 2010, 12:24:00 am
I am dodging nothing. You are the one ignoring the computer illiteracy of millions. The current system offers these people a better opportunity than your proposed system.

Sure you're dodging it.  You've got plenty of criticism, but repeatedly fail to come up with one suggestion with regards how an E-Democracy system could provide greater opportunities for participation to the computer illiterate, than the one I've described.

You say it's possible, you chastise me for it, yet when I ask you to describe how it could be improved upon - you've got nothing.


You seem to be operating under the impression that I am in full support of E-Democracy. Wrong assumption.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 22, 2010, 12:26:57 am
I don't think that's his position.  CU mentioned that people who didn't have access to the technology would be able to access it with libraries and other free services. As for voting away the rule of law, I think he was just ceding that, if enough people banded together to change the law, they could make any change they liked.  And, as far as I am aware that is, in theory, true - although unlikely since it's obviously not smart to abandon rule of law.

That gave me a hairball.

Okay - is there any form of E-Democracy that wouldn't give you a hairball?

So I guess the answer is "no" then.  Moving swiftly on.


Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Adios on July 22, 2010, 12:27:38 am
I don't think that's his position.  CU mentioned that people who didn't have access to the technology would be able to access it with libraries and other free services. As for voting away the rule of law, I think he was just ceding that, if enough people banded together to change the law, they could make any change they liked.  And, as far as I am aware that is, in theory, true - although unlikely since it's obviously not smart to abandon rule of law.

That gave me a hairball.

Okay - is there any form of E-Democracy that wouldn't give you a hairball?

So I guess the answer is "no" then.  Moving swiftly on.




Do not put words in my mouth sonny.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Jasper on July 22, 2010, 12:34:03 am
That's...evasive.

Is there any form of E-Democracy that you'd be interested in or not?

It looks like one type that I was interested in was basically an online parliament.  I'd like to see that get used by congress.  It'd be like C-Span on the internet.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Adios on July 22, 2010, 12:35:48 am
That's...evasive.

Is there any form of E-Democracy that you'd be interested in or not?

It looks like one type that I was interested in was basically an online parliament.  I'd like to see that get used by congress.  It'd be like C-Span on the internet.

Only one that would and could account for those who are not up to date on technology. Otherwise no.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Adios on July 22, 2010, 12:36:56 am
Plain enough?
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Adios on July 22, 2010, 12:41:14 am
It's my wifes 49th birthday and I am going to spend time with her now.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 22, 2010, 12:42:20 am
The virtual paraliment seems like an interesting idea.  It reminds me of Ender's Game.  Remember the forums that Ender's siblings talked on to influence politics?  It seems like this is that thing.

But, like the book, I don't see a thing like that working directly with citizens.  It would be too noisy.

Yeah, this is why I expect social networking and specialisation will play a part in selective filtering.  Take slashdot as an example of a busy forum.  I never comment there because, well, what's the point?  But if I had an easy way to see people in my circle of friends were commenting on, then I'd probably join in too.  Add to that list certain people who I'm interested in but don't know personally.  If I have more time to spare I'll expand my filter list to friends of friends.

I have no interest in what some random shmuck has to say, and no time to evaluate it, but I've got more chance of stumbling across it if I can easily view content which is "liked" by my friends of friends of friends, etc.  I might even make a new friend.

I don't think a network like this would be "the" answer, but I think it might form part of it by cutting out the stuff which is noise to me and signal to someone else.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Jasper on July 22, 2010, 12:43:13 am
Yeah.  Sorry if I'm being a nuisance about that.

Idea!  What about a representative virtual parliament where you vote the old fashioned way for people you want to represent you on an online congress type deal?  That way, the elected reps could easily keep track of who voted for them, and easily set up direct polls for them to see where they're at.   Low tech people wouldn't have as close an eye on things as others, so the site could also have a television channel where events are reported and discussed, and viewers could call in to voice concerns or participate in polls.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 22, 2010, 12:52:21 am
That's...evasive.

Is there any form of E-Democracy that you'd be interested in or not?


Not me.  Good old fashioned breaking down and sinking in the swamp democracy suits me just fine.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 22, 2010, 12:58:59 am
That's...evasive.

Is there any form of E-Democracy that you'd be interested in or not?

It looks like one type that I was interested in was basically an online parliament.  I'd like to see that get used by congress.  It'd be like C-Span on the internet.

Only one that would and could account for those who are not up to date on technology. Otherwise no.

Name one practical way that a system of E-Democracy could do that, to an extent greater than that I've already mentioned.

If someone is not up to date on technology, then they'll either have to learn how to use the technology, or get a friend or social worker to help them.  If they manage to identify an individual who represents a satisfactory portion of their personal agenda, perhaps via the town-crier or telegram, then they could appoint that individual as their proxy vote, and in doing so, find themselves with better representation than they currently have.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 22, 2010, 12:59:56 am
That's...evasive.

Is there any form of E-Democracy that you'd be interested in or not?

It looks like one type that I was interested in was basically an online parliament.  I'd like to see that get used by congress.  It'd be like C-Span on the internet.

Only one that would and could account for those who are not up to date on technology. Otherwise no.

Name one practical way that a system of E-Democracy could do that, to an extent greater than that I've already mentioned.

If someone is not up to date on technology, then they'll either have to learn how to use the technology, or get a friend or social worker to help them.  If they manage to identify an individual who represents a satisfactory portion of their personal agenda, perhaps via the town-crier  telegram, then they could appoint that individual as their proxy vote, and in doing so, find themselves with better representation than they currently have.

Mennonites don't get to vote!  WOOOOOO!
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Jasper on July 22, 2010, 01:02:30 am
Well, nobody was going to stand up for them anyway. :lulz:
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 22, 2010, 01:05:24 am
Oh come on - you identify a suitable proxy, and you find a way to input it into the system.

If you've got documentation enough to prove that you're eligible to vote, then it should be a simple matter to find a social worker who can do the logging on and casting-of-votes for you.


Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 22, 2010, 01:06:16 am
Oh come on - you identify a suitable proxy, and you find a way to input it into the system.

If you've got documentation enough to prove that you're eligible to vote, then it should be a simple matter to find a social worker who can do the logging on and casting-of-votes for you.




Or we can just stick with the system where they just ride their :hosrie: to the post office and vote.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: AFK on July 22, 2010, 01:38:09 am
Okay, so I have THOUSANDS of people in these two cities who don't have proper transportation to put fucking food on their table.  And you expect that these people are somehow going to find a way to sit down in front of the 12 or 13 public computers available at the library?  Oh, and before that even happens, you're going to need someone to educate these, mostly uneducated people, how to use this E-democracy thing, right after they are taught how to use the computer. 

So, I suggest that the first thing you need to do, CU, before you champion this idea, is do a little research on the poor, imporverished, illiterate people in this country and then really think how this is going to serve them.  And then if you still want to go ahead, and if you want to make sure these people are represented, you better prepare yourself to be writing grants 24/7 to get the funding to pay for the transportation and the social services that will be required to educate these people on Politics, Computers, and e-public policy.  You think you're going to be able to swing all of that?  Did you even consider all of that? 

Welcome to the real world.  It's peaches and sunshine I tell you. 
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 22, 2010, 01:41:58 am
Okay, so I have THOUSANDS of people in these two cities who don't have proper transportation to put fucking food on their table.  And you expect that these people are somehow going to find a way to sit down in front of the 12 or 13 public computers available at the library?  Oh, and before that even happens, you're going to need someone to educate these, mostly uneducated people, how to use this E-democracy thing, right after they are taught how to use the computer. 

So, I suggest that the first thing you need to do, CU, before you champion this idea, is do a little research on the poor, imporverished, illiterate people in this country and then really think how this is going to serve them.  And then if you still want to go ahead, and if you want to make sure these people are represented, you better prepare yourself to be writing grants 24/7 to get the funding to pay for the transportation and the social services that will be required to educate these people on Politics, Computers, and e-public policy.  You think you're going to be able to swing all of that?  Did you even consider all of that? 

Welcome to the real world.  It's peaches and sunshine I tell you. 

It will all done for God. Or Allah. Or The Perfect State™. Or communism. Or Capitalism and "free" markets. Or the superior tribe's right to expand. Or the superior race's need for cultural purity. It is the Holy Peoples' Will, and though unfortunate, these things must be done, do you understand? You can't make omelets without breaking eggs, and you can't make Big Things happen without squishing a few poor people.

And the trains will all run on time.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: AFK on July 22, 2010, 01:46:16 am
But nobody elects them.  Why?  Possibly because of brainwashing, but another possibility is that just because the 3rd parties are funnier, doesn't mean they're better.

Duverger's Law.  No exceptions.

I dunno though.  Is the green party really that hysterical compared to dems or repubs?

Funnier.  They're full of not-ready-for prime time players.  One of their idiots, whose name is Jonathan Carter, championed this bill in Maine to ban clearcutting in the forests.  Sounds nice right?  Until you read the details.  The bill would've mandated that all of the slash from harvesting be left where it was cut.  Slash is basically the branches and twigs that get cut off the log after the tree is harvested.  Now, a bunch of branches on the forest floor, plus really dry and hot conditions like we're having now would result in mega forest fire of epic proportions. 

I sat in on one of their meetings once and they were basically just picking people out of the audience to run for some of the local offices.  No questions about experience or initiatives.  It was like they were 3rd graders playing government.  Fucking hilarious. 
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 22, 2010, 01:48:04 am
I always had a soft spot for the American Family Party.

Nice folks, but they don't even have a website.  I think they run it out of a shoebox in Cleveland.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 22, 2010, 02:05:20 am
Okay, so I have THOUSANDS of people in these two cities who don't have proper transportation to put fucking food on their table.  And you expect that these people are somehow going to find a way to sit down in front of the 12 or 13 public computers available at the library?  Oh, and before that even happens, you're going to need someone to educate these, mostly uneducated people, how to use this E-democracy thing, right after they are taught how to use the computer. 

So, I suggest that the first thing you need to do, CU, before you champion this idea, is do a little research on the poor, imporverished, illiterate people in this country and then really think how this is going to serve them.  And then if you still want to go ahead, and if you want to make sure these people are represented, you better prepare yourself to be writing grants 24/7 to get the funding to pay for the transportation and the social services that will be required to educate these people on Politics, Computers, and e-public policy.  You think you're going to be able to swing all of that?  Did you even consider all of that? 

Welcome to the real world.  It's peaches and sunshine I tell you. 

Do we wait until we have full literacy before we start building libraries?

Do we wait until everyone can pay their medical bills before continuing with medical research?

I hate to break this to you RWHN, but Utopia doesn't exist.  An E-Democracy system may be incrementally better than what comes before it, but it will not magically solve all of the problems created by its predecessor before it is even implemented.  So let's take this fairlyland off the table right now shall we?

Great - now tell me what is wrong with the proxy vote system I've described whereby a charity which represents a clients interest can get or place their proxy vote such that they will be further empowered to support their clients and form a voting bloc?  Here - sign this piece of paper - done.

Tell me this - roughly what percentage of the group you are talking about currently participate in elections? 
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 22, 2010, 02:50:15 am


Do we wait until we have full literacy before we start building libraries?

Do we wait until everyone can pay their medical bills before continuing with medical research?


Do we toss out a system of government in favor of some half-finished, nebulous "solution" that doesn't actually fix anything?
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 22, 2010, 02:54:44 am
Do we think that anyone is suggesting that?
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: AFK on July 22, 2010, 02:59:28 am
Okay, so I have THOUSANDS of people in these two cities who don't have proper transportation to put fucking food on their table.  And you expect that these people are somehow going to find a way to sit down in front of the 12 or 13 public computers available at the library?  Oh, and before that even happens, you're going to need someone to educate these, mostly uneducated people, how to use this E-democracy thing, right after they are taught how to use the computer. 

So, I suggest that the first thing you need to do, CU, before you champion this idea, is do a little research on the poor, imporverished, illiterate people in this country and then really think how this is going to serve them.  And then if you still want to go ahead, and if you want to make sure these people are represented, you better prepare yourself to be writing grants 24/7 to get the funding to pay for the transportation and the social services that will be required to educate these people on Politics, Computers, and e-public policy.  You think you're going to be able to swing all of that?  Did you even consider all of that? 

Welcome to the real world.  It's peaches and sunshine I tell you. 

Do we wait until we have full literacy before we start building libraries?

Do we wait until everyone can pay their medical bills before continuing with medical research?

I hate to break this to you RWHN, but Utopia doesn't exist.  An E-Democracy system may be incrementally better than what comes before it, but it will not magically solve all of the problems created by its predecessor before it is even implemented.  So let's take this fairlyland off the table right now shall we?

Great - now tell me what is wrong with the proxy vote system I've described whereby a charity which represents a clients interest can get or place their proxy vote such that they will be further empowered to support their clients and form a voting bloc?  Here - sign this piece of paper - done.

Tell me this - roughly what percentage of the group you are talking about currently participate in elections? 

What's wrong with it?  It is a massive invite to corruption.  I can just see the "charities" who get people to give up their vote in exchange for some services.  Again, you don't seem to understand the compouding issue of literacy and education.  The people who arent voting in the first place, how do you expect them to understand this proxy business to give proper and INFORMED consent? 
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: AFK on July 22, 2010, 03:00:00 am
Do we think that anyone is suggesting that?

Yes.  You.  You clearly haven't thought everything through. 
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 22, 2010, 03:02:51 am
Do we think that anyone is suggesting that?

I think that's exactly what you're suggesting.

RWHN has brought up several valid points.  You have ignored or sidestepped them, because you are now wedded to this, and no amount of problems inherent in the system you're espousing will change your mind.

You're a convert, and there's nobody more zealous.  The facts don't matter, reality doesn't matter.  Just The Cause.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 22, 2010, 03:30:45 am
What's wrong with it?  It is a massive invite to corruption.  I can just see the "charities" who get people to give up their vote in exchange for some services.  Again, you don't seem to understand the compouding issue of literacy and education.  The people who arent voting in the first place, how do you expect them to understand this proxy business to give proper and INFORMED consent? 

Sure - that might happen.  There is a very limited risk to that though.  Since you can log-in and change your vote as often as you want, you cannot be tied to a particular proxy vote.  I'm assuming these people aren't stupid though, and so if a scam is discovered that news will spread quickly enough.  There simply isn't enough motivation to run such a scam with your real identity though.

Bottom line - I'd be satisfied if this system could represent more disadvantaged people than currently participate in the existing system.  Do you have stats on that?

An incremental benefit is all I'm looking for, not some utopian perfect ideal system.


Do we think that anyone is suggesting that?

I think that's exactly what you're suggesting.

Then you simply haven't been paying attention.

From the OP, Implementation Section:

Quote from: http://www.principiadiscordia.com/forum/index.php?topic=25822.0
Once you have the software you have to create a movement behind it.  Personally I don't see this as a major challenge, because there are enough people involved in metagovernment now to prove that it can work in a small-medium scale, such as running a company or cooperative organisation/charity.  If you have a working demonstration, and not just theory, it's a lot easier to convince people that there is some value to what you propose.  I expect very few people to read this, for example, even those who have participated in the debate so far, and as such the idea is an almost impossible sell to a wider public who have no other reason to care.

So the obvious next step is to target local government, such as with Senator On-Line (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Senator_On-Line) in Austrailia, and a host of other projects around the world.

The examples I gave there are precisely what I was suggesting, not to "toss out a system of government in favor of some half-finished, nebulous "solution" that doesn't actually fix anything".  The SOL project only elects a single Senator and doesn't come anywhere close to tossing out a system of government.


RWHN has brought up several valid points.  You have ignored or sidestepped them, because you are now wedded to this, and no amount of problems inherent in the system you're espousing will change your mind.

Like what?


You're a convert, and there's nobody more zealous.  The facts don't matter, reality doesn't matter.  Just The Cause.

Really, that's where you want to go with this?  Let's stick to the issues - no need to start casting personal aspersions.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 22, 2010, 03:33:11 am
Do we think that anyone is suggesting that?

Yes.  You.  You clearly haven't thought everything through. 

Of course I haven't.  Did I say I had?  The point of this thread is to discuss what I have thought through, and to work out the details of the parts I haven't.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Jasper on July 22, 2010, 05:50:01 am
I've tried bringing unfinished ideas to PD before.  It's not really...effective.  You end up defending something as you build it, and it becomes something you never would have wanted.  I'd take it back to the lab, and start a new thread when you have something a bit more airtight, because we prefer taking things apart.

Merely stating a subjective truth.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 22, 2010, 07:21:24 am

I have absolutely no problem with people trying to take this apart.  I welcome it.  The scale that I was covering in the implementation was limited to local government though:

So the obvious next step is to target local government, such as with Senator On-Line (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Senator_On-Line) in Austrailia, and a host of other projects (http://metagovernment.org/wiki/Main_Page) around the world.

With the proxy-voting method applied to candidates, and not just issues, this could interface with an existing power structure like this:

(http://zelea.com/project/votorola/d/theory/power/org.png)

In addition, you have the potential to allow the institutional power structure to reflect the actual voting which took place:

(http://zelea.com/project/votorola/d/theory/power/org-reflect.png)


That's all well and good.  But all we are doing here is filling positions for elected officials.  The next step is to elect officials who will honour the resolutions as decided by the E-Democracy software system.  I don't think this would take much more additional momentum to achieve.

And from there the implementation plan becomes more vague.  In theory working out the kinks and quirks at the smaller scales will allow it to scale up to handle larger tasks.  I'm too cynical to believe it will be quite that simple though.

I'm happy with my responses to Charley and RWHN with regards that an E-Democracy system will be able to provide enhanced value to the computer literate, while providing a representational service to others which is at least as good as that which they currently have.

So while I find talking about the potential benefits of applying E-Democracy to a national or global scale interesting, I don't see problems at those scales to be roadblocks at this stage as I'm only really focused on kickstarting it into the scale of local-government -- if that's all it ever accomplished, that would still be an incremental benefit worth having!
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: AFK on July 22, 2010, 10:47:40 am
What's wrong with it?  It is a massive invite to corruption.  I can just see the "charities" who get people to give up their vote in exchange for some services.  Again, you don't seem to understand the compouding issue of literacy and education.  The people who arent voting in the first place, how do you expect them to understand this proxy business to give proper and INFORMED consent? 

Sure - that might happen.  There is a very limited risk to that though.  Since you can log-in and change your vote as often as you want, you cannot be tied to a particular proxy vote.  I'm assuming these people aren't stupid though, and so if a scam is discovered that news will spread quickly enough.  There simply isn't enough motivation to run such a scam with your real identity though.

You didn't address the issue of informed consent or the issues of people understanding the proxy system.  You also haven't addressed my point of people not being able to find transportation for basics like shopping for food yet you think somehow they are going to get all the way across the city to the library to participate in your e-democracy, that they don't even understand.  You also haven't addressed the issue of cities having the capacities to engage the disadvantaged to educate them and to get them to places with computers.  So how do you address the capacity issues?

Lastly, this idea of changing you vote whenever you want to invites a whole host of problems.  Elected local officials could be recalled at any time.  You would make local govenment TOO fluid, and nothing would get done.  Government does require some level of institutional knowledge.  Fighting gridlock with complete fluidity is not the way to go. 
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Adios on July 22, 2010, 01:37:40 pm
Hmmm. I wonder how much I could sell my proxy for............
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: AFK on July 22, 2010, 01:48:16 pm
I really dislike the proxy voting idea.  People should be empowered to express THEIR voice.  If the goal is to get people to rally behind an idea or movement, you can do that without a proxy system.  You hold town halls, launch social marketing campaigns, have focus groups, etc., etc.,   Give people good information.  Teach them how to find out more.  Show them how they can help broadcast the information further. 

I think it is moving in the wrong direction to go to a system where people are encouraged to let someone else be their voice.  It not only invites corruption, but it builds in even MORE voter apathy.  We want to move the needle in the other direction towards LESS voter apathy. 
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Adios on July 22, 2010, 01:50:18 pm
I really dislike the proxy voting idea.  People should be empowered to express THEIR voice.  If the goal is to get people to rally behind an idea or movement, you can do that without a proxy system.  You hold town halls, launch social marketing campaigns, have focus groups, etc., etc.,   Give people good information.  Teach them how to find out more.  Show them how they can help broadcast the information further. 

I think it is moving in the wrong direction to go to a system where people are encouraged to let someone else be their voice.  It not only invites corruption, but it builds in even MORE voter apathy.  We want to move the needle in the other direction towards LESS voter apathy. 

Correct. The poors proxies would be like feeding time.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Adios on July 22, 2010, 01:52:16 pm
Change is never just one big splash. It is a big splash followed by a hundred ripples.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: AFK on July 22, 2010, 01:59:57 pm
I am somewhat repeating a point I've made earlier here, but I also think this e-system puts up something of a test for voters.  It isn't an intentional one like the ones used to keep blacks from voting back in the day, but, it will work to weed out certain segments of the local population.  Walking into a booth and checking a box is something most people can handle.  And there are remedies at a live poll for someone with a literacy problem or who speaks English as a second language. 

For an e-system, you have those hurdles, plus the knowledge hurdle of operating a computer, AND navigating the software to participate.  So you really would be taking a few steps back with this new system, as far as fair representation, and I don't see anything in the proposal that sufficiently addresses how to correct that and make it better than the current system. 
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Adios on July 22, 2010, 02:02:40 pm
I am somewhat repeating a point I've made earlier here, but I also think this e-system puts up something of a test for voters.  It isn't an intentional one like the ones used to keep blacks from voting back in the day, but, it will work to weed out certain segments of the local population.  Walking into a booth and checking a box is something most people can handle.  And there are remedies at a live poll for someone with a literacy problem or who speaks English as a second language. 

For an e-system, you have those hurdles, plus the knowledge hurdle of operating a computer, AND navigating the software to participate.  So you really would be taking a few steps back with this new system, as far as fair representation, and I don't see anything in the proposal that sufficiently addresses how to correct that and make it better than the current system. 

I agree with you. CU seems to want to rely heavily on the proxy system, which we have pointed out is filled with potential corruption.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Adios on July 22, 2010, 02:09:28 pm
On the proxy, someone could get all the homeless registered to vote and get their proxy. I don't know how many there are in this country right now, but I imagine there are a substantial number.

Old Chicago style politics! Vote early and often!
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: LMNO on July 22, 2010, 02:12:08 pm
Let's back up.

The issue at hand is, as far as I can tell, "how do we get more people involved in the voting process?"  And this thread suggests that using technology to change the way people get elected will enable a deeper involvement with the process.

But even that question implies that there are people who want to get involved who can't.

Under the current system, barring understaffed and undersupplied polling stations, almost everyone who wants to vote, can.  Those that are unable to do so under the current system could be helped by either extending poll hours, facilitating the absentee ballots process, and/or declaring election day to be a federal holiday.

The main problem seems to be that the percentage of eligible voters to actually vote ranges from 40% to 50%. Further complicating matters is that there is a large market-driven industry surrounding the voting process whose purpose is to make appeals to emotion and other fallacies in order to secure people's votes for candidates regardless of their competency.

So we have an end result of a minority of people voting for issues most of them don't understand.  If this problem isn't directly addressed, a new way to vote will be worthless.


On the other hand, if the main issue in this thread is "how to we bring more variety to the voting process," then once again, our current voting process is designed to handle that.  However, this is once again stymied by the electoral marketing forces that spend umpteen dollars convincing the public they only need two parties.  As show previously, a voting system of multiple choices, or even rankings, won't change who gets elected so long as the public remains uninformed about civics and the issues.


So, until we can address the questions of the electoral climate and irrationality, and of voter apathy and ignorance, the entire issue of our voting methods gets a big barstool.

:barstool:
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Adios on July 22, 2010, 02:19:53 pm
Nice post DA. Spending caps on television ads, spending limits on campaigns period would help a lot. More direct debates between the candidates and websites with a list of how they feel on the issues would be very nice. For starters.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: AFK on July 22, 2010, 02:29:16 pm
I think another piece to look at is education.  Just thinking about it in a linear way in terms of the life span.  It would seem to me you could effect more change if you could look at introducing curricula in the adolescent years that really teaches civic engagement, being a part of your community, introduce how public policy works (not just how a bill becomes law), and media literacy.  If we give kids a meaningful set of skills to examine and interpret the policy arena, I think we would find that we would literally be growing a new electorate that is more engaged, makes better* choices, and really looks at the possibilities beyond the R/D paradigm. 

I've been clamoring for just some media literacy in the Maine schools for years now, and there are a few other voices with me, but we need more.  But if there was some strong push behind weaving those things into education, I think we could see a meaningful shift in how the voting behavior of the electorate. 
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Adios on July 22, 2010, 02:30:41 pm
I think another piece to look at is education.  Just thinking about it in a linear way in terms of the life span.  It would seem to me you could effect more change if you could look at introducing curricula in the adolescent years that really teaches civic engagement, being a part of your community, introduce how public policy works (not just how a bill becomes law), and media literacy.  If we give kids a meaningful set of skills to examine and interpret the policy arena, I think we would find that we would literally be growing a new electorate that is more engaged, makes better* choices, and really looks at the possibilities beyond the R/D paradigm. 

I've been clamoring for just some media literacy in the Maine schools for years now, and there are a few other voices with me, but we need more.  But if there was some strong push behind weaving those things into education, I think we could see a meaningful shift in how the voting behavior of the electorate. 

I agree completely. Ever think of taking the push national?
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: AFK on July 22, 2010, 02:40:51 pm
I have.  I have two, maybe three years left on this current grant.  I've been thinking about what my next project will be and I think this would be a good one.  Someone get me a truckload of money and I'll run against Olympia Snowe when her term is up and give it a go.  ;) 
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 22, 2010, 02:43:22 pm
Poverty affects your ability to participate in a democracy.  That sucks.  But it is a fact.  Therefore, if I can find a way in which E-Democracy can provide democratic representation for more people in poverty than are covered under the existing system, then I consider that a victory.  Is that logic horribly flawed?

I've asked twice if you have any stats on how many people in poverty currently vote, so I'm going to go with the first thing I google, wow - it's a horrible paper, but it suggests 5% of people in poverty currently vote (http://www.freeonlineresearchpapers.com/poverty-voter-participation) - that sounds about right, let's run with that then.


You didn't address the issue of informed consent or the issues of people understanding the proxy system.

I'll try again then.

"Instead of picking a president who you want to fight for various issues on your behalf, votes on issues are now made online and everyones vote is equal.  If you have access to a computer you can vote on individual issues yourself, if you don't have computer access then you can proxy your vote to a trusted individual or organisation who will add your vote to theirs - e.g. if you proxy your vote to The United Way, they'll only vote on issues in order to try and reduce homelessness/poverty/etc.  You cannot sell your vote, but you can switch your proxy vote at any time."

Sure - not everyone will be able to understand the concepts in those three sentences, but - crucially - at least 6% will.

Let's face it - what percentage of people today could pass a civics test, never mind just those who have lived their entire lives in poverty?  If you're expecting me to come up with a solution that will be 100% perfect, then I will fail, but only because that expectation is entirely unreasonable.


You also haven't addressed my point of people not being able to find transportation for basics like shopping for food yet you think somehow they are going to get all the way across the city to the library to participate in your e-democracy, that they don't even understand.  You also haven't addressed the issue of cities having the capacities to engage the disadvantaged to educate them and to get them to places with computers.  So how do you address the capacity issues?

If they proxy-vote to The United Way then they'll be better represented then they are currently.  They don't need to even see a computer to do this.

That's how I address all of those issues.  It's not in the form you're asking for because fully re-educating an entire population prior to implementing a new form of Governance is an entirely ridiculous benchmark.  America would still be a British Colony.


Lastly, this idea of changing you vote whenever you want to invites a whole host of problems.  Elected local officials could be recalled at any time.  You would make local govenment TOO fluid, and nothing would get done.  Government does require some level of institutional knowledge.  Fighting gridlock with complete fluidity is not the way to go. 

You're conflating two ideas -- how to elect officials, and how to direct those officials once they are in place.  As you point out, terms for elected officials are quite useful in practice.


Hmmm. I wonder how much I could sell my proxy for............

What, assuming you change the laws about selling your vote first?

Okay - very little.  It's a single vote.  A corporation would need to buy-off a majority of the population in order to pull that off, so it'd hardly be underhand or secret.

But yeah - the law would need to be very clear that votes cannot be sold, and individuals cannot be bound (legally or otherwise) to vote in a particular way.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 22, 2010, 02:56:12 pm
So, until we can address the questions of the electoral climate and irrationality, and of voter apathy and ignorance, the entire issue of our voting methods gets a big barstool.

I'm thinking in terms of an iterative form of voter education, rather than a ready-made solution, as described here:
  http://www.principiadiscordia.com/forum/index.php?topic=25822.msg900233#msg900233
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: AFK on July 22, 2010, 03:18:12 pm
Again, the very idea of the proxy vote is, pardon my bluntness, completely awful.  It does the opposite of empowering people to voice their opinion and to have their say.  It becomes ceded to an organization.  So now, not only do you have powerful corporations influencing elections, you've just given a truckload of power to non-profits and charitable organizations to influence elections.  Especially when the people they are receiving permission to be their proxy vote are desperate for basic needs.  Those people, because of education an literacy issues, can very easily be taken advantage of.  At least when they walk into a voting booth, they know they are casting their vote for their interest. 

If only 5% are voting, we need more mobilization, more empowerment.  Your solution doesn't do that.  It invites more apathy as people can just give their vote away and let someone else do it. 

Forget the proxy vote.  Focus on ways to get people to express their vote for themselves.  Don't add layers and barriers, look to take layers and barriers away.  Get more poor people hooked up with absentee ballots. 

Another point, even if you exclude lawmakers from the construct where people can change their vote at any time, you still have the issue of totally fluid laws.  That kind of fluidity is going to be just as bad for laws as it is for lawmakers.  Changes in laws should be measured and considered.  While the current system is bulky and cumbersome, it does protect against knee-jerk reactions.  While less gridlock is certainly welcome, I'm not sure the body of local law turning on a dime is something we want either.  Especially if those turns are really close together. 
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: LMNO on July 22, 2010, 03:24:42 pm
Regarding proxies:

From what I understand, the proposal is that people who cannot gain access to the direct e-voting methods pool their votes with a group or charity to represent them.

How many charities would they have access to, and where would they find the charities?  Which groups would have the resources and the willingness to canvas the poorest and most remote parts of the country, looking for disenfranchised voters? 

Chances are good that only the best-funded groups (GOP, DNC) would be able to make a comprehensive push for proxy votes.  So again, the big money status quo wins.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: AFK on July 22, 2010, 03:28:51 pm
I'm also fairly certain you would have to rewrite an assload of elections law and non-profit law to allow an entity like the United Way to not only cast votes, but to also cast the votes of other individuals.  Based upon my dealings with the United Way, I think there would be some considerable conflicts of interest at play. 
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 22, 2010, 03:40:47 pm
Again, the very idea of the proxy vote is, pardon my bluntness, completely awful.  It does the opposite of empowering people to voice their opinion and to have their say.  It becomes ceded to an organization.  So now, not only do you have powerful corporations influencing elections, you've just given a truckload of power to non-profits and charitable organizations to influence elections.  Especially when the people they are receiving permission to be their proxy vote are desperate for basic needs.  Those people, because of education an literacy issues, can very easily be taken advantage of.  At least when they walk into a voting booth, they know they are casting their vote for their interest. 

If only 5% are voting, we need more mobilization, more empowerment.  Your solution doesn't do that.  It invites more apathy as people can just give their vote away and let someone else do it. 

There's two issues here - proxy voting for the 6% of people in poverty, which is my benchmark of incremental success, and proxy voting for everyone else.  There may be people who try to scam - I've already debunked that though - so I won't repeat my argument here.  But there will be trusted organisations for whom giving them your proxy will be more effective than voting D or R in an election every four years.

For that 6% of people in poverty, the proxy vote is not ideal, but at a bare minimum it gives them something better than they have today -- do you disagree on that point?


Forget the proxy vote.  Focus on ways to get people to express their vote for themselves.  Don't add layers and barriers, look to take layers and barriers away.  Get more poor people hooked up with absentee ballots. 

This is a thread about whether or not E-Democracy is feasible, not whether it is better or worse than some other utopian ideal.

If you have an implementation idea for E-Democracy which improves upon proxy voting, then I'll be all ears.


Another point, even if you exclude lawmakers from the construct where people can change their vote at any time, you still have the issue of totally fluid laws.  That kind of fluidity is going to be just as bad for laws as it is for lawmakers.  Changes in laws should be measured and considered.  While the current system is bulky and cumbersome, it does protect against knee-jerk reactions.  While less gridlock is certainly welcome, I'm not sure the body of local law turning on a dime is something we want either.  Especially if those turns are really close together. 

Please consider the point whereby the majority of issues would not be monolithic thousand-page reforms but minor informed tweaks.

Yes there may be a period of chaos.  But consider this as a process, it's not like we're stuck with a single idea for a decade, unable to modify our course - if things get too chaotic - and a majority of people decide to continue, then who are we to say what is best for them? 

If things really get chaotic though, doesn't it seem likely that we'd all just start talking about that problem and come up with a way to solve it by making things less fluid for a while?


How many charities would they have access to, and where would they find the charities?  Which groups would have the resources and the willingness to canvas the poorest and most remote parts of the country, looking for disenfranchised voters? 

Chances are good that only the best-funded groups (GOP, DNC) would be able to make a comprehensive push for proxy votes.  So again, the big money status quo wins.

If they actually improve the lot of the impoverished - great.  If they are a scam, it'll be common knowledge just by looking at their voting record, and since it's not exactly hard to change your proxy-vote, and since poor people aren't automatically stupid or unable to talk to each other, I don't see this as a looming concern.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: LMNO on July 22, 2010, 03:42:57 pm

If they actually improve the lot of the impoverished - great.  If they are a scam, it'll be common knowledge just by looking at their voting record, and since it's not exactly hard to change your proxy-vote, and since poor people aren't automatically stupid or unable to talk to each other, I don't see this as a looming concern.

I see a flaw in your theory.

Also, if the proxy group gets your vote and then leaves town, how are you supposed to change your vote?
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 22, 2010, 03:43:45 pm
If things really get chaotic though, doesn't it seem likely that we'd all just start talking about that problem and come up with a way to solve it by making things less fluid for a while?

...

If they actually improve the lot of the impoverished - great.  If they are a scam, it'll be common knowledge just by looking at their voting record, and since it's not exactly hard to change your proxy-vote, and since poor people aren't automatically stupid or unable to talk to each other, I don't see this as a looming concern.

If anyone answers in terms of monkeys or doom-and-gloom human stupidity, I give up.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: LMNO on July 22, 2010, 03:47:43 pm
Ok, so maybe we should leave pragmatics aside.  I know, I know.  Bear with me.


Perhaps the question is, "would e-democracy be better or worse than our current system?"

Let us compare and contrast the ballot method versus e-dem.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 22, 2010, 03:49:15 pm

If they actually improve the lot of the impoverished - great.  If they are a scam, it'll be common knowledge just by looking at their voting record, and since it's not exactly hard to change your proxy-vote, and since poor people aren't automatically stupid or unable to talk to each other, I don't see this as a looming concern.

I see a flaw in your theory.

Votes are not anonymous, as per the OP.

I'm not convinced that this is a good thing.  Again - see the arguments for/against in the OP.

Potentially individual votes may be anonymous, but proxy-carriers would publicly publish their tallies - that might work.. I'll think a bit more on how that could be hi-jacked.


Also, if the proxy group gets your vote and then leaves town, how are you supposed to change your vote?

By logging on with your username and password, and changing your proxy vote.  In the case of the computer illiterate, it would be the charity case-worker logging on and setting the proxy vote in the first place.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Adios on July 22, 2010, 03:57:15 pm

If they actually improve the lot of the impoverished - great.  If they are a scam, it'll be common knowledge just by looking at their voting record, and since it's not exactly hard to change your proxy-vote, and since poor people aren't automatically stupid or unable to talk to each other, I don't see this as a looming concern.

I see a flaw in your theory.

Votes are not anonymous, as per the OP.

I'm not convinced that this is a good thing.  Again - see the arguments for/against in the OP.

Potentially individual votes may be anonymous, but proxy-carriers would publicly publish their tallies - that might work.. I'll think a bit more on how that could be hi-jacked.


Also, if the proxy group gets your vote and then leaves town, how are you supposed to change your vote?

By logging on with your username and password, and changing your proxy vote.  In the case of the computer illiterate, it would be the charity case-worker logging on and setting the proxy vote in the first place.


Then I am against this entire concept.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 22, 2010, 04:00:02 pm
Did you even read the OP, or just come onto this thread to snipe and bicker?
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Adios on July 22, 2010, 04:01:21 pm
Did you even read the OP, or just come onto this thread to snipe and bicker?

Oh, excuse me please. I guess under YOUR system I am not allowed to have my personal vote if it goes against your feelings.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 22, 2010, 04:02:46 pm
WTF dude, you didn't even bother to read two sentences more than the one you highlighted:

"Potentially individual votes may be anonymous, but proxy-carriers would publicly publish their tallies - that might work.. I'll think a bit more on how that could be hi-jacked."

fuck this noise
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Adios on July 22, 2010, 04:06:55 pm
WTF dude, you didn't even bother to read two sentences more than the one you highlighted:

"Potentially individual votes may be anonymous, but proxy-carriers would publicly publish their tallies - that might work.. I'll think a bit more on how that could be hi-jacked."

fuck this noise

You simply refuse to hear differing thoughts. You say you have addressed the issues brought up concerning proxy voting but you haven't, you have tried to gloss them over. Votes HAVE to be anonymous to guarantee free elections. It was mentioned earlier that you are in love with this idea and are now married to it. I honestly believe this to be the case. I will not post anymore in this thread since disagreeing with you isn't allowed.

kthksbai
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: LMNO on July 22, 2010, 04:11:01 pm

If they actually improve the lot of the impoverished - great.  If they are a scam, it'll be common knowledge just by looking at their voting record, and since it's not exactly hard to change your proxy-vote, and since poor people aren't automatically stupid or unable to talk to each other, I don't see this as a looming concern.

I see a flaw in your theory.

Votes are not anonymous, as per the OP.

I'm not convinced that this is a good thing.  Again - see the arguments for/against in the OP.

Potentially individual votes may be anonymous, but proxy-carriers would publicly publish their tallies - that might work.. I'll think a bit more on how that could be hi-jacked.


Also, if the proxy group gets your vote and then leaves town, how are you supposed to change your vote?

By logging on with your username and password, and changing your proxy vote.  In the case of the computer illiterate, it would be the charity case-worker logging on and setting the proxy vote in the first place.


But the proxy group has left town. 

Or are you proposing that every proxy group have an infrastructure of charity case-workers in permanent residence and offices in impoverished areas? 

Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: AFK on July 22, 2010, 04:19:33 pm
There's two issues here - proxy voting for the 6% of people in poverty, which is my benchmark of incremental success, and proxy voting for everyone else.  There may be people who try to scam - I've already debunked that though

You offered a rebuttal, but you have not provided anything that I can see that would actually adequately protect against corruption.  I think you need to research that more and do some more thinking on that.  

Quote
- so I won't repeat my argument here.  But there will be trusted organisations for whom giving them your proxy will be more effective than voting D or R in an election every four years.

But I thought this was about local government not federal?  Which is it?  

Quote
For that 6% of people in poverty, the proxy vote is not ideal, but at a bare minimum it gives them something better than they have today -- do you disagree on that point?

Yes I do for all the reasons I've laid out from capacity to education.  You are adding a barrier which is the navigation of a new voting system and use of a new technology.  If you are looking to go from 5% to 6% introducing a new barrier will be counter productive.  You are better off starting a non-profit that has funding to educate and transport people to polling places.  I'd dare say you could get to 8 or 9% with that kind of initiative.  

Quote
This is a thread about whether or not E-Democracy is feasible, not whether it is better or worse than some other utopian ideal.

If you have an implementation idea for E-Democracy which improves upon proxy voting, then I'll be all ears.

Define feasible.  Feasible from who's perspective?  

Quote
Please consider the point whereby the majority of issues would not be monolithic thousand-page reforms but minor informed tweaks.

Yes there may be a period of chaos.  But consider this as a process, it's not like we're stuck with a single idea for a decade, unable to modify our course - if things get too chaotic - and a majority of people decide to continue, then who are we to say what is best for them? 

If things really get chaotic though, doesn't it seem likely that we'd all just start talking about that problem and come up with a way to solve it by making things less fluid for a while?

Okay, so Town X passes a law to require your headlights must be on when you use your windshield wipers.  Two months later,there is a movement to overturn this because people find it inconvenient to have to remember that, so the law is overturned.  3 days later, there is a horrific pile-up because someone didn't see another car coming because it was drizzly and they didn't have headlights on.  A new movement reinstates that headlight law.  So, within a few months you've had the law change 3 times.  

Do you think the citizenry is going to be able to keep up with all of this.  What about law enforcement officials who need to keep track of all these changes and adjust training curriculum and enforcement activities with each change?  

Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: LMNO on July 22, 2010, 04:48:38 pm
So, I read the OP again, and have a few thoughts.

1) is this e-dem for the election of representatives, or for deciding on the bills and resolutions that representatives usually vote on in congress?  The two ideas get conflated about 10 posts in.

2) proxy voting and approval voting have very little to do with the medium in which they're employed.  it is just as easy to do proxy and approval voting with paper ballots as it is with e-dem. So e-dem needs to offer something paper balloting doesn't.  So far, reversal of vote seems to be a main difference.

3) e-dem seems to offer the immedite proposal of ideas from citizens.  But is there a vetting process, or do people just vote, change their vote, and see what happens, like some massive Jennifer's Government/Nation States game, where there are a dozen or so new proposals every day, from "more money to schools" to "bring back segregation"?

4) if people have direct access to issues, who decides which issues they can vote on?  Something as large as Iran could get horrifically messy if people keep changing their votes on sanctions, invasions, nuke attack, etc.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Jasper on July 22, 2010, 06:00:58 pm
So, I read the OP again, and have a few thoughts.

1) is this e-dem for the election of representatives, or for deciding on the bills and resolutions that representatives usually vote on in congress?  The two ideas get conflated about 10 posts in.

2) proxy voting and approval voting have very little to do with the medium in which they're employed.  it is just as easy to do proxy and approval voting with paper ballots as it is with e-dem. So e-dem needs to offer something paper balloting doesn't.  So far, reversal of vote seems to be a main difference.

3) e-dem seems to offer the immedite proposal of ideas from citizens.  But is there a vetting process, or do people just vote, change their vote, and see what happens, like some massive Jennifer's Government/Nation States game, where there are a dozen or so new proposals every day, from "more money to schools" to "bring back segregation"?

4) if people have direct access to issues, who decides which issues they can vote on?  Something as large as Iran could get horrifically messy if people keep changing their votes on sanctions, invasions, nuke attack, etc.


I spent about a while nailing down #1 a few pages back, we're talking representative democracy.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: LMNO on July 22, 2010, 06:20:15 pm
So, if we're using e-dem to elect representatives, then what are the benefits of using e-dem?

- Would "reversing your vote" mean that the elected rep would have to resign?  For tightly held races, would you get a weekly revolving door of representatives, where on week 1 Johnny has the most votes, but on week 2 Sarah wins, and then on week 3 Johnny is back in power?
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: AFK on July 22, 2010, 07:36:06 pm
That's the fluidity problem I'm seeing.  Essentially any public official could be recalled at any time.  But it would be just as bad for public policy as you are creating a lot of work for law enforcement entities to keep up with the constant churning, and also you would need the public to also keep up with all of the changes.  I think it is challenging enough for many in the citizenry to just keep up with the laws that go into effect once a year after elections.  If you introduce the ability to reverse votes, it will become even more confusing. 

There are some things that shouldn't necessarily happen fast.  I think lawmaking is one of those.  Granted, complete gridlock isn't admirable either, but I'm not sure this is the remedy to go to. 
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: LMNO on July 22, 2010, 07:39:00 pm
So, if we take away the reversal of votes, does e-dem offer any benefits that paper ballots do not?
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 22, 2010, 07:41:05 pm
That's the fluidity problem I'm seeing.  Essentially any public official could be recalled at any time. 

So nobody could ever make an unpopular, but necessary, decision...Not even at the cost of their career, because they'd be hauled out of office before they could impliment it.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: AFK on July 22, 2010, 07:58:53 pm
I think the goal of e-democracy is well intentioned and well meaning.  But the reversal vote is an issue for me and I also think the proxy vote idea is an invitation for voter fraud.  Yes, I know voter fraud goes on now, but with poll monitors and officials at physical locations, there are more eyes on the process.  Given the tenacity and success of hackers, I feel like this e-system offers more opportunities for corruption and tampering.  Perhaps in 10 to 20 years technology will develop to the point where this isn't much of an issue, and maybe at that point an e-system for civic participation would work.

And I still think e-democracy puts up barriers to some people for participation.  I've focused on the poor and disadvantaged, but there are also people who aren't necessarily poor, but who have some kind of learning disability for which needing to use a computer system to vote would be daunting. 

I just can't really see anything in the write-up that I can latch onto, other than the general idea of having people more involved in the process.  I just think there are probably better approaches that don't involve such a drastic overhaul and shift of the voting and civic participation process. 
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: LMNO on July 22, 2010, 08:03:16 pm
Perhaps we can spend the rest of the thread identifying why people aren't more involved in the current process, and if there are any other solutions.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 22, 2010, 08:09:04 pm
Perhaps we can spend the rest of the thread identifying why people aren't more involved in the current process, and if there are any other solutions.

More people = more dumb.

Like I said, we should make it physically painful to cast a vote.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Freeky on July 22, 2010, 08:10:43 pm
This thread reminds me of a panel in Transmet, where some chick is arguing with some dude about how elections should be held on paper ("Because that's the way we've always done it, it's an institution"*) vs moving on to technology to do it.


I think people are becoming more and more apathetic about voting because making decisions means knowing a situation, and also taking responsibility for your decisions by voting. People are becoming less and less likely to think if they don't have to, and most people, given the chance, won't take responsibility for anything if they can get away with it.



*Please to note, I don't actually see anyone that has this argument, but Captain Utopia is reminding me of the chick who was against paper ballots because they're inconvenient to go out somewhere and vote, or something.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Jasper on July 22, 2010, 08:35:02 pm
Perhaps we can spend the rest of the thread identifying why people aren't more involved in the current process, and if there are any other solutions.

More people = more dumb.

Like I said, we should make it physically painful to cast a vote.

How painful?  Like, maximum strength drop your ass to the ground pain laser, or what?
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 22, 2010, 08:36:01 pm
Perhaps we can spend the rest of the thread identifying why people aren't more involved in the current process, and if there are any other solutions.

More people = more dumb.

Like I said, we should make it physically painful to cast a vote.

How painful?  Like, maximum strength drop your ass to the ground pain laser, or what?

Maybe a short, sharp shock when you pull the lever.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Jasper on July 22, 2010, 08:40:02 pm
Okay, cause I was just thinking that if it was extremely painful, only really insane people would vote.

Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 22, 2010, 08:45:35 pm
Okay, cause I was just thinking that if it was extremely painful, only really insane people would vote.



I can't see how that would make any significant difference.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Jasper on July 22, 2010, 08:48:48 pm
Exactly, so it would be a waste of money to make the pain stimulus too strong.  I think the key is to get it stronger than merely inconvenient, but weaker than fear/trauma inducing. 
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 22, 2010, 08:50:52 pm
Exactly, so it would be a waste of money to make the pain stimulus too strong. 

Well, that would depend on your motivation for doing it, right?
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 22, 2010, 11:17:05 pm
You simply refuse to hear differing thoughts. You say you have addressed the issues brought up concerning proxy voting but you haven't, you have tried to gloss them over. Votes HAVE to be anonymous to guarantee free elections. It was mentioned earlier that you are in love with this idea and are now married to it. I honestly believe this to be the case. I will not post anymore in this thread since disagreeing with you isn't allowed.

kthksbai

I wrote down some ideas on E-Democracy in a bunch of threads, and you attacked me for having no substance.  So I take those ideas and put them together into the OP, which you don't even bother to read but continue to snipe.  Fine, whatever.  But don't tell me I'm married to an idea - I don't deserve that insult.  Not only did I express my dissatisfaction with non-anonymous votes in the OP, I did at several points in the thread earlier, which I guess you didn't read either, here's one:

I'm not sure what to think of this issue - I'm not fully convinced by my arguments, but if you could address them I might be more inclined to reach your conclusion.

And another, where I mull over an alternative which does include anonymous voting:

Votes are not anonymous, as per the OP.

I'm not convinced that this is a good thing.  Again - see the arguments for/against in the OP.

Potentially individual votes may be anonymous, but proxy-carriers would publicly publish their tallies - that might work.. I'll think a bit more on how that could be hi-jacked.


So you can fuck right off with the whole "disagreeing with you is not allowed" bullshit - I lost patience when you made it very clear that you were just here to shit over the thread with snippy little comments, and ignoring any evidence I provide that I'm not a zealot, because you've already made up your mind.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 22, 2010, 11:20:23 pm
Also, if the proxy group gets your vote and then leaves town, how are you supposed to change your vote?

By logging on with your username and password, and changing your proxy vote.  In the case of the computer illiterate, it would be the charity case-worker logging on and setting the proxy vote in the first place.


But the proxy group has left town. 

Or are you proposing that every proxy group have an infrastructure of charity case-workers in permanent residence and offices in impoverished areas? 

No, there would be a web presence to an E-Democracy system, so you just need to find someone to help you who has access to the internet.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 22, 2010, 11:21:48 pm
Also, if the proxy group gets your vote and then leaves town, how are you supposed to change your vote?

By logging on with your username and password, and changing your proxy vote.  In the case of the computer illiterate, it would be the charity case-worker logging on and setting the proxy vote in the first place.


But the proxy group has left town. 

Or are you proposing that every proxy group have an infrastructure of charity case-workers in permanent residence and offices in impoverished areas? 

No, there would be a web presence to an E-Democracy system, so you just need to find someone to help you who has access to the internet.

Other than allowing instant recall of anyone who tries to impliment an unpopular measure, no matter how necessary, what concrete benefit do we get out of all of this?
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 22, 2010, 11:32:48 pm
There's two issues here - proxy voting for the 6% of people in poverty, which is my benchmark of incremental success, and proxy voting for everyone else.  There may be people who try to scam - I've already debunked that though

You offered a rebuttal, but you have not provided anything that I can see that would actually adequately protect against corruption.  I think you need to research that more and do some more thinking on that.  

Well can you tell me why you think the I am wrong to suggest that corruption would be limited, referencing what I wrote rather than relying on generalities?


Quote
- so I won't repeat my argument here.  But there will be trusted organisations for whom giving them your proxy will be more effective than voting D or R in an election every four years.

But I thought this was about local government not federal?  Which is it?  

I'm a Brit living in Canada, I've spent less than 72 hours in the US - so forgive my ignorance - but thought that even local officials were affiliated with the major parties?


Quote
For that 6% of people in poverty, the proxy vote is not ideal, but at a bare minimum it gives them something better than they have today -- do you disagree on that point?

Yes I do for all the reasons I've laid out from capacity to education.  You are adding a barrier which is the navigation of a new voting system and use of a new technology.  If you are looking to go from 5% to 6% introducing a new barrier will be counter productive.  You are better off starting a non-profit that has funding to educate and transport people to polling places.  I'd dare say you could get to 8 or 9% with that kind of initiative.  

Please explain why what I describe is worse than what they have now.  Today.  Not if I try another scheme other than the one I'm proposing.


Quote
This is a thread about whether or not E-Democracy is feasible, not whether it is better or worse than some other utopian ideal.

If you have an implementation idea for E-Democracy which improves upon proxy voting, then I'll be all ears.

Define feasible.  Feasible from who's perspective?  

Feasible from the perspective of, does it have great gaping holes which mean it'd never work or not.  Not, would some other non-profit plan help some segment of the population better.


Quote
Please consider the point whereby the majority of issues would not be monolithic thousand-page reforms but minor informed tweaks.

Yes there may be a period of chaos.  But consider this as a process, it's not like we're stuck with a single idea for a decade, unable to modify our course - if things get too chaotic - and a majority of people decide to continue, then who are we to say what is best for them? 

If things really get chaotic though, doesn't it seem likely that we'd all just start talking about that problem and come up with a way to solve it by making things less fluid for a while?

Okay, so Town X passes a law to require your headlights must be on when you use your windshield wipers.  Two months later,there is a movement to overturn this because people find it inconvenient to have to remember that, so the law is overturned.  3 days later, there is a horrific pile-up because someone didn't see another car coming because it was drizzly and they didn't have headlights on.  A new movement reinstates that headlight law.  So, within a few months you've had the law change 3 times.  

Do you think the citizenry is going to be able to keep up with all of this.  What about law enforcement officials who need to keep track of all these changes and adjust training curriculum and enforcement activities with each change?  

This is the best question I've seen so far in this thread.  I'm going to mull it over, okay?  (I'm not glossing over or ignoring it)
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 22, 2010, 11:34:32 pm
Other than allowing instant recall of anyone who tries to impliment an unpopular measure, no matter how necessary, what concrete benefit do we get out of all of this?

I'm not proposing instant recall of elected officials.  I did state my preference for term periods, but I guess it got buried.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 23, 2010, 12:03:42 am
So, I read the OP again, and have a few thoughts.

1) is this e-dem for the election of representatives, or for deciding on the bills and resolutions that representatives usually vote on in congress?  The two ideas get conflated about 10 posts in.

It's for deciding resolutions on issues.  One neat feature of proxy-voting is that it gives you a built-in structure of authority, should you wish to structure your leadership tree that way.  I also think that proxy-voting is a neat way to deal with the information overload that an e-dem system would create.  So I can see how that got conflated, sorry about that.


2) proxy voting and approval voting have very little to do with the medium in which they're employed.  it is just as easy to do proxy and approval voting with paper ballots as it is with e-dem. So e-dem needs to offer something paper balloting doesn't.  So far, reversal of vote seems to be a main difference.

It allows for smaller issues to be addressed more quickly.  Health Care Reform - a massive percentage of that was agreeable to both sides, but the small percentage of partisan catnip prevented anything happening for months.  Also, this would seem to marginalise highly partisan groups, since they'd no longer be able to hold up the whole show.  Voter education, apathy, participation.  Things actually getting done is better than nothing getting done, even if there are a few fuckups.

I'm summarising here, partly because I've gone into more detail ITT, but also because it'd be a good thing to chew over and add to the OP.


3) e-dem seems to offer the immedite proposal of ideas from citizens.  But is there a vetting process, or do people just vote, change their vote, and see what happens, like some massive Jennifer's Government/Nation States game, where there are a dozen or so new proposals every day, from "more money to schools" to "bring back segregation"?

In the OP I talked about the need for a new method of group communication, for the reasons you raise above.. now I think that the solution will involve grouping people into their areas of self-proclaimed expertise, and layering concepts from social networks on top of that, particularly getting interesting content from friends-of-friends-of-friends-of-etc.  E.g. I might not know much about a particular subject, but if a bunch of people in my network who are knowledgeable it are really excited about a new issue, it can bubble up and appear on my radar that way.

So you'd essentially crowd-source filtering the "schools" issues to one group of people who care about it, and "civil rights" issues to another.  At the end of the day, an issue would just be a link, so anyone could bring attention to any issue in a manner of different ways.

I haven't seen much/any research on this front from metagovernment -- most of the projects in testing average around a dozen or so participants.  But it is a vital issue, and it's still an open question whether it can be addressed.


4) if people have direct access to issues, who decides which issues they can vote on?  Something as large as Iran could get horrifically messy if people keep changing their votes on sanctions, invasions, nuke attack, etc.

I'm going to stay away from national security for now, unless anyone really wants to get into it.  I'm going to address the switching problem in my response to RWHN.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 23, 2010, 12:19:58 am
Other than allowing instant recall of anyone who tries to impliment an unpopular measure, no matter how necessary, what concrete benefit do we get out of all of this?

I'm not proposing instant recall of elected officials.  I did state my preference for term periods, but I guess it got buried.

Okay, let me rephrase:  What possible benefit do we get from this that we don't get from paper ballots?
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 23, 2010, 12:40:50 am
Other than allowing instant recall of anyone who tries to impliment an unpopular measure, no matter how necessary, what concrete benefit do we get out of all of this?

I'm not proposing instant recall of elected officials.  I did state my preference for term periods, but I guess it got buried.

Okay, let me rephrase:  What possible benefit do we get from this that we don't get from paper ballots?

It allows for smaller issues to be addressed more quickly.  Health Care Reform - a massive percentage of that was agreeable to both sides, but the small percentage of partisan catnip prevented anything happening for months.  Also, this would seem to marginalise highly partisan groups, since they'd no longer be able to hold up the whole show.  Voter education, apathy, participation.  Things actually getting done is better than nothing getting done, even if there are a few fuckups.

I'm summarising here, partly because I've gone into more detail ITT, but also because it'd be a good thing to chew over and add to the OP.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 23, 2010, 12:41:48 am
Other than allowing instant recall of anyone who tries to impliment an unpopular measure, no matter how necessary, what concrete benefit do we get out of all of this?

I'm not proposing instant recall of elected officials.  I did state my preference for term periods, but I guess it got buried.

Okay, let me rephrase:  What possible benefit do we get from this that we don't get from paper ballots?

It allows for smaller issues to be addressed more quickly.  Health Care Reform - a massive percentage of that was agreeable to both sides, but the small percentage of partisan catnip prevented anything happening for months.  Also, this would seem to marginalise highly partisan groups, since they'd no longer be able to hold up the whole show.  Voter education, apathy, participation.  Things actually getting done is better than nothing getting done, even if there are a few fuckups.

I'm summarising here, partly because I've gone into more detail ITT, but also because it'd be a good thing to chew over and add to the OP.

Things actually getting done is an undesirable thing, CU.  I can prove this.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 23, 2010, 12:48:29 am
I can't imagine the status quo heading anywhere but off the cliff.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 23, 2010, 12:51:15 am
I can't imagine the status quo heading anywhere but off the cliff.

Sure.

On the other hand, do you think we have too many laws, or not enough laws?
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 23, 2010, 12:51:43 am

Too many.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 23, 2010, 12:53:21 am

Too many.

And when's the last time you heard a politician say "I'm soft on crime?"

The system is in the shape it's in because people DEMAND it, not because they use paper ballots.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 23, 2010, 12:55:26 am

The people don't invent their own DANGER signals.  Those are foisted.  And then, admittedly, repeated by the people.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: AFK on July 23, 2010, 10:58:44 am
Well can you tell me why you think the I am wrong to suggest that corruption would be limited, referencing what I wrote rather than relying on generalities?

You seem to be relying purely on faith.  You essentially said it might happen but it won't, but if it does, people can just log in and change their vote back.  Which gets to the whole problem of vote reversal which will be a monumental pain for those in charge of enforcing the laws and those who are supposed to follow the everchanging body of law.  Moreover you seem to think that there will be no motivation to vote under another person's identity which is complete bullshit.  It happens now.  Dead people somehow manage to register and vote.  And now, if you actually legalize people giving their vote to someone else?  You've just made it that much easier for the con-men. 

Quote
Yes I do for all the reasons I've laid out from capacity to education.  You are adding a barrier which is the navigation of a new voting system and use of a new technology.  If you are looking to go from 5% to 6% introducing a new barrier will be counter productive.  You are better off starting a non-profit that has funding to educate and transport people to polling places.  I'd dare say you could get to 8 or 9% with that kind of initiative.  

Please explain why what I describe is worse than what they have now.  Today.  Not if I try another scheme other than the one I'm proposing.
I've told you over and over again.  You are adding an extra hurdle, an extra barrier.  Computer literacy.  It WILL by its very nature be more discriminatory. 

Quote
Feasible from the perspective of, does it have great gaping holes which mean it'd never work or not.  Not, would some other non-profit plan help some segment of the population better
Okay then by your definition of feasible I would say it is a resounding no because of all the problems I've raised.  Again, this system as you've laid out has issues with voter discrimination, voter corruption, and impracticality of policy implementation and enforcement.

Quote
This is the best question I've seen so far in this thread.  I'm going to mull it over, okay?  (I'm not glossing over or ignoring it)

Pardon the gloat here but I do have quite a bit of experience working with law enforcement and working in the state and local policy arena.  I'm not being argumentative for the sake of arguing.  I simply know the issues that this will cause and know where it will not work and serve to disenfranchise the disadvantaged.  Quite simply, I think you have a bit more research to do on this. 
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: LMNO on July 23, 2010, 01:34:37 pm
Other than allowing instant recall of anyone who tries to impliment an unpopular measure, no matter how necessary, what concrete benefit do we get out of all of this?

I'm not proposing instant recall of elected officials.  I did state my preference for term periods, but I guess it got buried.

Okay, let me rephrase:  What possible benefit do we get from this that we don't get from paper ballots?

It allows for smaller issues to be addressed more quickly.  Health Care Reform - a massive percentage of that was agreeable to both sides, but the small percentage of partisan catnip prevented anything happening for months.  Also, this would seem to marginalise highly partisan groups, since they'd no longer be able to hold up the whole show.  Voter education, apathy, participation.  Things actually getting done is better than nothing getting done, even if there are a few fuckups.

I'm summarising here, partly because I've gone into more detail ITT, but also because it'd be a good thing to chew over and add to the OP.

In other words, we're back to direct democracy, yes?  The citizenry makes laws, not the elected representatives.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: AFK on July 23, 2010, 01:48:24 pm
I'd just like to note, that if it weren't for direct democracy, gay marriage would still be legal in Maine right now.  It was the PEOPLE who overturned it. 

Just some food for thought.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 23, 2010, 07:16:42 pm
In other words, we're back to direct democracy, yes?  The citizenry makes laws, not the elected representatives.

Maybe eventually, if DD was able to prove itself a responsible and effective way to govern.  But before we start with a requiem for Socrates, let me explain.

The practical model I'm focused on right now is along the lines of Senator On-Line (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Senator_On-Line), where the public decides how it wants the Senator to vote on every bill.  So far this involves keeping all the existing legislative structures and safeguards, but replacing the decision-making process.  Now the Senator could absolutely disregard the peoples will.  If it was a bad call, it would obviously impact chances of re-election, or maybe you impose a one-term limit.  But in terms of implementation, all of the technology to do this is already proven - we could do it now if we had the will.  However, in the last real election the SOL candidate got 0.06% of the popular vote, so there is some distance left to go before we'll get the chance to try it out.


The theoretical model I'm also looking at goes beyond this - here I'm more interested in whether we could expand our social networks into networks of trust and expertise, able to divide monolithic legislation into smaller/targeted/relevant chunks, and in the process come up with more effective decisions more efficiently without the undue effects of political partisanship.  If proxy voting was implemented, then it would avoid the problem of the uninformed traipsing over issues they know little about.. although contentious issues could potentially devolve into DD, with everyone overriding their proxy-vote.  I've discussed various motivations in play which would reduce this risk, but it even with such a system in place, there is no test which would absolutely prove that we wouldn't choose to abuse it.  So the question I ask is how effective would those motivations be?  I do not think it is desirable to have a system which is 100% foolproof.

Any system which cannot be abused also imprisons you.

The most realistic strategy I see for this is to implement it as a separate and parallel/shadow initiative.  Run it over a period of time with as large a group as possible.  If it proves its worth, it may become noteworthy/politically relevant and increasing its userbase.  If it becomes noteworthy, it may become part of political decision making.  That's a chain of maybes, but I think it's the path of least resistance.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 23, 2010, 07:29:21 pm
Please consider the point whereby the majority of issues would not be monolithic thousand-page reforms but minor informed tweaks.

Yes there may be a period of chaos.  But consider this as a process, it's not like we're stuck with a single idea for a decade, unable to modify our course - if things get too chaotic - and a majority of people decide to continue, then who are we to say what is best for them? 

If things really get chaotic though, doesn't it seem likely that we'd all just start talking about that problem and come up with a way to solve it by making things less fluid for a while?

Okay, so Town X passes a law to require your headlights must be on when you use your windshield wipers.  Two months later,there is a movement to overturn this because people find it inconvenient to have to remember that, so the law is overturned.  3 days later, there is a horrific pile-up because someone didn't see another car coming because it was drizzly and they didn't have headlights on.  A new movement reinstates that headlight law.  So, within a few months you've had the law change 3 times.  

Do you think the citizenry is going to be able to keep up with all of this.  What about law enforcement officials who need to keep track of all these changes and adjust training curriculum and enforcement activities with each change?  

So how about this instead -- each resolution needs to include a realistic plan for its implementation.  By realistic I mean, if your plan involves changing regulations which law enforcement needs to train itself for and uphold, then you don't write into law that the regulation will be enforced tomorrow.  Instead you solicit/accept input from the relevant stakeholders.  If you need 21 days to retrain officers and advertise the change to the population, then you add that to the resolution.

Key to the e-dem concept is that I could vote one way on an issue today, talk with a friend tonight, and change my vote - while the vote remains open.  But once an issue has been decided/closed, a vote placed in that cannot be changed.  A separate issue would be required to repeal, and it would also require its own implementation plan.

In the case of the Army and DADT, a populace may decide to call the bluff, and disregard the input from the stakeholders.  I do have faith that if something like that turned out to be the wrong decision, then it would reduce the likelihood of similar mistakes happening in the future.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Kai on July 23, 2010, 07:30:18 pm
FictionPuss, you have turned into a complete douchebag.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on July 23, 2010, 07:39:06 pm
FictionPuss, you have turned into a complete douchebag.

I'd argue that.  He was hilarious as the triumphant return of Moonkitten.

But yeah, this obsession is getting a little old.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: LMNO on July 23, 2010, 07:52:10 pm
So, calling your congressman is too antiquated?
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 23, 2010, 08:02:50 pm

Uh-huh.  First you mock me for not having any details behind my thoughts, and now you put the boot in when I describe and discuss those details when other people address them.

Playing the jester is approved, original thought which doesn't fit the doom-and-gloom narrative will be treated as heresy.

I'll talk about whatever I want to, thanks all the same.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 23, 2010, 08:04:01 pm
So, calling your congressman is too antiquated?

Compared with having a direct impact on events from your phone or computer, yes, definitely.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: LMNO on July 23, 2010, 08:05:48 pm
Wait, how?

You have an elected representative, and you use a piece of technology to tell him how you feel on an issue.  I'm still not seeing it, I guess.  Unless you're circumventing the legislative process, of course.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: AFK on July 23, 2010, 08:13:42 pm
Please consider the point whereby the majority of issues would not be monolithic thousand-page reforms but minor informed tweaks.

Yes there may be a period of chaos.  But consider this as a process, it's not like we're stuck with a single idea for a decade, unable to modify our course - if things get too chaotic - and a majority of people decide to continue, then who are we to say what is best for them? 

If things really get chaotic though, doesn't it seem likely that we'd all just start talking about that problem and come up with a way to solve it by making things less fluid for a while?

Okay, so Town X passes a law to require your headlights must be on when you use your windshield wipers.  Two months later,there is a movement to overturn this because people find it inconvenient to have to remember that, so the law is overturned.  3 days later, there is a horrific pile-up because someone didn't see another car coming because it was drizzly and they didn't have headlights on.  A new movement reinstates that headlight law.  So, within a few months you've had the law change 3 times.  

Do you think the citizenry is going to be able to keep up with all of this.  What about law enforcement officials who need to keep track of all these changes and adjust training curriculum and enforcement activities with each change?  

So how about this instead -- each resolution needs to include a realistic plan for its implementation.  By realistic I mean, if your plan involves changing regulations which law enforcement needs to train itself for and uphold, then you don't write into law that the regulation will be enforced tomorrow.  Instead you solicit/accept input from the relevant stakeholders.  If you need 21 days to retrain officers and advertise the change to the population, then you add that to the resolution.

You'll need far more than 21 days.  The Arizona immigration will be going into law next Thursday and it was passed by the legislature months ago.  It takes a long time to get these things into place.  It will take 21 days just to make all of the phone calls to organize the trainings.  This is what I'm talking about with the excessive fluidity of your model.  

Quote
Key to the e-dem concept is that I could vote one way on an issue today, talk with a friend tonight, and change my vote - while the vote remains open.  But once an issue has been decided/closed, a vote placed in that cannot be changed.  A separate issue would be required to repeal, and it would also require its own implementation plan.

I see no benefit in this whatsoever.  The way it currently works now is that the citizenry already knows what questions are coming up for referendum way in advance of the actual election.  Citizens have ample time to talk to their friends, do research, and come to a firm conclusion of where they stand on the issue.  Then they cast their vote.  What's wrong with that?  

And we already have a system in place where a separate issue can be put on the table to repeal.  It happens here in Maine all the time.  One year a referendum will pass to legalize X.  Citizens gather signatures to put a question on the next ballot to repeal that.  This can happen on an annual basis already.  And honestly I think that is fucked up.  Your system seems like it would amp that up and make it happen even faster.  That fluidity in the law will put a lot of stress on the community.  

Quote
In the case of the Army and DADT, a populace may decide to call the bluff, and disregard the input from the stakeholders.  I do have faith that if something like that turned out to be the wrong decision, then it would reduce the likelihood of similar mistakes happening in the future.

Wrong according to who?  Mistakes according to who?  You seem to have an assumption in your model that there will be this kumbaya rationality amongst the e-democracy participants.  Maybe that works in a little WOW group playing e-democracy.  But if you expand it to a community, a society, a populace, that shit goes out the window right fast.  It's mob rule.  
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: AFK on July 23, 2010, 08:17:49 pm
Wait, how?

You have an elected representative, and you use a piece of technology to tell him how you feel on an issue.  I'm still not seeing it, I guess.  Unless you're circumventing the legislative process, of course.

My interpretation of this is he is essentially taking the referendum process, or citizens initiative process that exists in most states, and putting it on speed.  So instead of putting questions and proposals on ballots every November.  They go up at will whenever some group decides a law needs to be changed, added, or repealed. 

So if pd.com was the community:  I want to repeal the 50-post rule.  I post something that says so.  The majority agrees and then it is passed.  2 months later, you decide that is bullshit and want to put it back.  You post something, and we go through it again.  Wash, rinse, repeat....CU, feel free to correct me where I am off but that is how I'm reading what you are selling. 
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Jasper on July 23, 2010, 08:20:35 pm
How about an non-negotiable law that says if a law is repealed a third (or second) time, it stays off the books.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: AFK on July 23, 2010, 08:20:46 pm
So, calling your congressman is too antiquated?

Compared with having a direct impact on events from your phone or computer, yes, definitely.

Funny story.  So we have an alcohol enforcement officer here in my community.  A big chunk of his salary was coming from the state office of substance abuse.  they announced that funding was shriveling like a prune.  We discovered we weren't going to have enough money to pay for the officer.  We contacted our state senator, told her the story.  Through the magic of the legislation process, she found a pot of money to funnel to the police department so that work could continue.  Want to take a guess at how long all that took?  
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: LMNO on July 23, 2010, 08:25:01 pm
My interpretation of this is he is essentially taking the referendum process, or citizens initiative process that exists in most states, and putting it on speed.  So instead of putting questions and proposals on ballots every November.  They go up at will whenever some group decides a law needs to be changed, added, or repealed. 

I quietly point to California's pending economic collapse, and then to California's wide use of referendums to decide tax and budget issues.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Kai on July 23, 2010, 09:18:10 pm
FictionPuss, you have turned into a complete douchebag.

I'd argue that.  He was hilarious as the triumphant return of Moonkitten.

But yeah, this obsession is getting a little old.

I meant in the sense that a douchebag, in the sense it was for tourturing vaginas, is an antiquated piece of paraphernalia, and it's functional use doesn't rest upon any current rational understanding of reality. Just in case people think I'm merely throwing insults as ad hominem.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 23, 2010, 11:09:56 pm
FictionPuss, you have turned into a complete douchebag.

I'd argue that.  He was hilarious as the triumphant return of Moonkitten.

But yeah, this obsession is getting a little old.

I meant in the sense that a douchebag, in the sense it was for tourturing vaginas, is an antiquated piece of paraphernalia, and it's functional use doesn't rest upon any current rational understanding of reality. Just in case people think I'm merely throwing insults as ad hominem.

Yes, you are.  But since no-one is going to call you on it outside of PMs, you might as well own it rather than trying to explain it away in the most convoluted way possible.  Not using my chosen username is a another nice touch.  I really don't understand the burning need to turn a theoretical discussion into a personal attack.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 23, 2010, 11:17:17 pm
So, calling your congressman is too antiquated?

Compared with having a direct impact on events from your phone or computer, yes, definitely.

Funny story.  So we have an alcohol enforcement officer here in my community.  A big chunk of his salary was coming from the state office of substance abuse.  they announced that funding was shriveling like a prune.  We discovered we weren't going to have enough money to pay for the officer.  We contacted our state senator, told her the story.  Through the magic of the legislation process, she found a pot of money to funnel to the police department so that work could continue.  Want to take a guess at how long all that took? 

I not saying that all old is bad and all new is good.  Certainly, I expect the kind of interaction you describe happens all the time.


Wait, how?

You have an elected representative, and you use a piece of technology to tell him how you feel on an issue.  I'm still not seeing it, I guess.  Unless you're circumventing the legislative process, of course.

Using a telephone is a lot less efficient, and a lot more time consuming than using a web application which is streamlined for that purpose.  It's a click not a conversation.  By reducing the barriers of participation, even if the amount of energy/effort in question is small, you'll get more people involved.

Online, I would expect the individuals Impact of each interaction to be less than those in RWHN's anecdote about using existing channels of communication.  However, since the existing channels would still exist, and more people would be involved overall, it seems like an improvement to me.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 23, 2010, 11:46:26 pm
Please consider the point whereby the majority of issues would not be monolithic thousand-page reforms but minor informed tweaks.

Yes there may be a period of chaos.  But consider this as a process, it's not like we're stuck with a single idea for a decade, unable to modify our course - if things get too chaotic - and a majority of people decide to continue, then who are we to say what is best for them? 

If things really get chaotic though, doesn't it seem likely that we'd all just start talking about that problem and come up with a way to solve it by making things less fluid for a while?

Okay, so Town X passes a law to require your headlights must be on when you use your windshield wipers.  Two months later,there is a movement to overturn this because people find it inconvenient to have to remember that, so the law is overturned.  3 days later, there is a horrific pile-up because someone didn't see another car coming because it was drizzly and they didn't have headlights on.  A new movement reinstates that headlight law.  So, within a few months you've had the law change 3 times.  

Do you think the citizenry is going to be able to keep up with all of this.  What about law enforcement officials who need to keep track of all these changes and adjust training curriculum and enforcement activities with each change?  

So how about this instead -- each resolution needs to include a realistic plan for its implementation.  By realistic I mean, if your plan involves changing regulations which law enforcement needs to train itself for and uphold, then you don't write into law that the regulation will be enforced tomorrow.  Instead you solicit/accept input from the relevant stakeholders.  If you need 21 days to retrain officers and advertise the change to the population, then you add that to the resolution.

You'll need far more than 21 days.  The Arizona immigration will be going into law next Thursday and it was passed by the legislature months ago.  It takes a long time to get these things into place.  It will take 21 days just to make all of the phone calls to organize the trainings.  This is what I'm talking about with the excessive fluidity of your model.  

Okay great - in the proxy vote model, having just demonstrated a greater knowledge, you'd now be my proxy for deciding on implementation timelines.

21 days was just a number I pulled out of my ass, it's not relevant to whether or not the model could work if correct implementation times were given.


Quote
Key to the e-dem concept is that I could vote one way on an issue today, talk with a friend tonight, and change my vote - while the vote remains open.  But once an issue has been decided/closed, a vote placed in that cannot be changed.  A separate issue would be required to repeal, and it would also require its own implementation plan.

I see no benefit in this whatsoever.  The way it currently works now is that the citizenry already knows what questions are coming up for referendum way in advance of the actual election.  Citizens have ample time to talk to their friends, do research, and come to a firm conclusion of where they stand on the issue.  Then they cast their vote.  What's wrong with that?  

It limits the amount of referendum issues a population can consider in a given time period.  I don't see a good reason for an artificial limitation.

With an open voting window where you can see how an issue is progressing, if a pet issue isn't faring so well then you have an additional motivation to discuss and promote it.  Perhaps you aren't as informed as you think on your pet issue, and maybe discussion leads to you changing your own mind.  And maybe not, increasing the amount of discussion sounds like a good thing to me though.


And we already have a system in place where a separate issue can be put on the table to repeal.  It happens here in Maine all the time.  One year a referendum will pass to legalize X.  Citizens gather signatures to put a question on the next ballot to repeal that.  This can happen on an annual basis already.  And honestly I think that is fucked up.  Your system seems like it would amp that up and make it happen even faster.  That fluidity in the law will put a lot of stress on the community.  

Isn't it better to resolve the argument in a few months, then over a few years?


Quote
In the case of the Army and DADT, a populace may decide to call the bluff, and disregard the input from the stakeholders.  I do have faith that if something like that turned out to be the wrong decision, then it would reduce the likelihood of similar mistakes happening in the future.

Wrong according to who?  Mistakes according to who?

The majority.

Giving more control to the populace over their own destiny, taking off training-wheels off, is the only way I see of educating the populace in the medium-long term.

And it won't always be pretty.


You seem to have an assumption in your model that there will be this kumbaya rationality amongst the e-democracy participants.  Maybe that works in a little WOW group playing e-democracy.  But if you expand it to a community, a society, a populace, that shit goes out the window right fast.  It's mob rule.  

No.  But neither do I assume that all of the participants in such a system would remain static.  Attitudes will change.  Reactions and expectations will change.  People will find new ways to get the things they want in such a system.  I don't think we'll all run around like headless chickens unable to find any new answers to the problems you predict which are made all the more vivid by virtue of living through them.

I may be incorrect in my estimations of how the motivations will play out, but until we start discussing in those terms, I don't see how we'll find any middle ground.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Jasper on July 23, 2010, 11:52:40 pm
I just thought of something.  What if I don't want people deferring their vote to me?
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 23, 2010, 11:54:06 pm
How about an non-negotiable law that says if a law is repealed a third (or second) time, it stays off the books.

Every rule you add can, and will, be gamed.


Wait, how?

You have an elected representative, and you use a piece of technology to tell him how you feel on an issue.  I'm still not seeing it, I guess.  Unless you're circumventing the legislative process, of course.

My interpretation of this is he is essentially taking the referendum process, or citizens initiative process that exists in most states, and putting it on speed.  So instead of putting questions and proposals on ballots every November.  They go up at will whenever some group decides a law needs to be changed, added, or repealed. 

So if pd.com was the community:  I want to repeal the 50-post rule.  I post something that says so.  The majority agrees and then it is passed.  2 months later, you decide that is bullshit and want to put it back.  You post something, and we go through it again.  Wash, rinse, repeat....CU, feel free to correct me where I am off but that is how I'm reading what you are selling. 

Yes - that's about it.

But how many times would something like that have to happen before we, as a group, start wanting to find a way more thoroughly explore issues before deciding upon them?  How long before it becomes obvious to all of the participants.

It's a game-design issue -- you're free to implement a freedom, if there is an oppositional factor which will limit the scope for abuse.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 23, 2010, 11:55:09 pm
I just thought of something.  What if I don't want people deferring their vote to me?

It's a good question.  Should people be allowed to refuse deferrals?
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Jasper on July 24, 2010, 12:26:16 am
If every rule that can be added will be gamed, why bother?  The people will have their way.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Kai on July 24, 2010, 12:50:45 am
FictionPuss, you have turned into a complete douchebag.

I'd argue that.  He was hilarious as the triumphant return of Moonkitten.

But yeah, this obsession is getting a little old.

I meant in the sense that a douchebag, in the sense it was for tourturing vaginas, is an antiquated piece of paraphernalia, and it's functional use doesn't rest upon any current rational understanding of reality. Just in case people think I'm merely throwing insults as ad hominem.

Yes, you are.  But since no-one is going to call you on it outside of PMs, you might as well own it rather than trying to explain it away in the most convoluted way possible.  Not using my chosen username is a another nice touch.  I really don't understand the burning need to turn a theoretical discussion into a personal attack.

The simple answer is I expect better of you. What is it about human nature that has changed so significantly which would allow an "e-democracy" to be an egalitarian meritocracy rather than mob rule? Why is it that you believe (=anticipate) that people will not only act in their own best interests but will make both epistemic and instrumental rational decisions, when history has shown us that in general people do not act this way when given the opportunity?
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 24, 2010, 01:15:25 am
Please see my last response to RWHN (http://www.principiadiscordia.com/forum/index.php?topic=25822.msg901268#msg901268) for a more complete examination of this issue.  To summarise - the question is not whether taking a populations training-wheels off with regards its own destiny will change that population, but what will change and how.  While I anticipate a lot of scraped knees, I think it is improbable that we won't learn something.  I think we will learn how to better ride the bicycle of rationality.  The hyper-connectivity our networks now provide is something entirely new to our species.  It has already changed how we interact with each other.  It will continue to do so.

In this environment history is not the best indicator of future performance.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Kai on July 24, 2010, 01:29:20 am
Please see my last response to RWHN (http://www.principiadiscordia.com/forum/index.php?topic=25822.msg901268#msg901268) for a more complete examination of this issue.  To summarise - the question is not whether taking a populations training-wheels off with regards its own destiny will change that population, but what will change and how.  While I anticipate a lot of scraped knees, I think it is improbable that we won't learn something.  I think we will learn how to better ride the bicycle of rationality.  The hyper-connectivity our networks now provide is something entirely new to our species.  It has already changed how we interact with each other.  It will continue to do so.

In this environment history is not the best indicator of future performance.

Provide evidence for the above bolded statement.

Hyper-connectivity of networks is not sufficient enough evidence for an extraordinary claim. How are people going to become more rational (cf. Less Wrong) via e-democracy? What mechanism does e-democracy within hyper-connectivity provide to cause widespread changes to human psychology leading to higher rationality? And a more important question, what evidence do you have that such a move would provide for a society based more heavily in egalitarian meritocracy rather than mob rule? Because any resultant leading more to the latter than the former is not worth my time.

Emphasis on the last part.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Kai on July 24, 2010, 01:32:47 am
And as for your last statement about history, what are basing your hypotheses on then? Because if not /what has already happens/, then they are floating on NOTHING. You have zero evidence. You are advocating a very unsafe social experiment with hypotheses picked out of thin air, maps bearing random (and therefore meaningless) relationship to reality.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 24, 2010, 01:58:54 am

The game we've been playing ITT, is that I'll describe a situational set of forces/motivations and explain why I think this will change a particular variable and why - then someone will respond along the lines of "that variable will never change to value X because of precedent Y".  Completely ignoring the unique set of motivations that I use as my premise.

What I would love to see is for someone to take the set of forces/motivations and come up with a different conclusion from that which I've reached, and argue from there.  But so far no one is willing to climb on that limb.  I guess brain-storming probability makes one look ridiculous.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Kai on July 24, 2010, 02:37:57 am
Why don't you summarize a situation in statements about forces and motivations and I'll evaluate those? But YES, I will evaluate based upon historical evidence (ie shit that's already happened) because no one, even you, can evaluate rationally based upon anything else. Bayesian reasoning requires priors to calculate a resultant, and those priors are not pulled out of thin air. Otherwise the chance of them actually correlating to reality is a coin toss, zero knowledge and zero ability to anticipate reality.

And don't tell me you can do away with priors when predicting reality, because that will be an outright lie.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: LMNO on July 24, 2010, 03:06:18 am
CU seems to be saying that if people can make decisions quickly, on their own, as a group, then they will eventually make good decisions, in an independent manner.

The best way to test this is to examine a situation where this already happens. The home, the neighborhood, the community?

How much rationality do we see there? Or am I just being cynical?
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Jasper on July 24, 2010, 04:33:40 am
I'm interested in the underlying beliefs in the different sides.  CU seems to think that citizens can make the best legislative decision for themselves, and opposition seems to think that e-democracy isn't feasible because popular whim falls short of sensible governance.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: LMNO on July 24, 2010, 04:52:02 am
Maybe we should look to history to decide that question.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 24, 2010, 06:31:42 am
Why don't you summarize a situation in statements about forces and motivations and I'll evaluate those? But YES, I will evaluate based upon historical evidence (ie shit that's already happened) because no one, even you, can evaluate rationally based upon anything else. Bayesian reasoning requires priors to calculate a resultant, and those priors are not pulled out of thin air. Otherwise the chance of them actually correlating to reality is a coin toss, zero knowledge and zero ability to anticipate reality.

And don't tell me you can do away with priors when predicting reality, because that will be an outright lie.

Okay, thanks - let's run with RWHN's concern about fluidity - voters changing their minds too frequently, as with in his experience in Maine with a referendum one year which spawns another the next designed to cancel it out.  And let's start with his example - a population takes a law off the books regarding headlights and windscreen washers, an accident results and they then seek to re-implement it as soon as possible.

I think that example is entirely plausible under an e-democracy system.  The main question I'm trying to answer is how many times will similar problems crop up in a population over time - does the frequency stay high, does it increase or decrease significantly?

Does an incident, such as that, provide any motivation to consider future issues more carefully?
  If so, is the level of that motivation proportional to the disaster/observed problem?

Do the actors in such a population have a motivation to avoid the fluidity problem, with legislation swinging from one extreme to the next?
  If so, does that motivation marginalise partisanship or increase it?

Would the implementation of such a system increase or decrease the quantity of political/civic discussion in a population?
  Would the quality be affected, if so, how?

Over time, would participation in such a system increase or decrease the amount of responsibility an individual felt about the power of their vote?
  If it's increased, does that make an individual more or less likely to change their mind when confronted with convincing evidence?
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: AFK on July 24, 2010, 12:43:31 pm
So, calling your congressman is too antiquated?

Compared with having a direct impact on events from your phone or computer, yes, definitely.

Funny story.  So we have an alcohol enforcement officer here in my community.  A big chunk of his salary was coming from the state office of substance abuse.  they announced that funding was shriveling like a prune.  We discovered we weren't going to have enough money to pay for the officer.  We contacted our state senator, told her the story.  Through the magic of the legislation process, she found a pot of money to funnel to the police department so that work could continue.  Want to take a guess at how long all that took? 

I not saying that all old is bad and all new is good.  Certainly, I expect the kind of interaction you describe happens all the time.

So why do you want to turn it on its ear?  The problem isn't the system.  The problem is the people using, or not using, the system.  Your socialogical experiment may or may not change the mindset of some people, but at what cost?  That's why I say, and will stand firm on this, your eneregy is much better spent designing programs and initiatives to mobilize people.  To get them to be more engaged.  You are making a huge assumption that just because it is online and people get to vote more often, tht this is somehow going to make them more active.  And then I really think you are copping out by putting in this proxy idea.  So that the people who don't want to to vote just give up their vote to someone else.  The corruption issues aside, that would tend to breed more apathy.  Plus, I can just see people scalping their votes.  More corruption.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: AFK on July 24, 2010, 12:48:11 pm
My interpretation of this is he is essentially taking the referendum process, or citizens initiative process that exists in most states, and putting it on speed.  So instead of putting questions and proposals on ballots every November.  They go up at will whenever some group decides a law needs to be changed, added, or repealed. 

So if pd.com was the community:  I want to repeal the 50-post rule.  I post something that says so.  The majority agrees and then it is passed.  2 months later, you decide that is bullshit and want to put it back.  You post something, and we go through it again.  Wash, rinse, repeat....CU, feel free to correct me where I am off but that is how I'm reading what you are selling. 

Yes - that's about it.

But how many times would something like that have to happen before we, as a group, start wanting to find a way more thoroughly explore issues before deciding upon them?  How long before it becomes obvious to all of the participants.

It's a game-design issue -- you're free to implement a freedom, if there is an oppositional factor which will limit the scope for abuse.


Again.  IN a small internet community that may work.  But when you are talking about the entire population of New York City, or the entire population of New York State, or the entire population of the USA, it becomes a whole different animal.  The kind of consensus you are imagining would be very, very difficult, if not impossible, with a group that large.  Tragedy of the Commons.  There wouldn't be sufficient impetus for wanting to change the system.  Especially if the policy changes are going their way. 
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: AFK on July 24, 2010, 12:53:14 pm
Please see my last response to RWHN (http://www.principiadiscordia.com/forum/index.php?topic=25822.msg901268#msg901268) for a more complete examination of this issue.  To summarise - the question is not whether taking a populations training-wheels off with regards its own destiny will change that population, but what will change and how.  While I anticipate a lot of scraped knees, I think it is improbable that we won't learn something.  I think we will learn how to better ride the bicycle of rationality.  The hyper-connectivity our networks now provide is something entirely new to our species.  It has already changed how we interact with each other.  It will continue to do so.

In this environment history is not the best indicator of future performance.

The way you are summarizing this it just sounds like your interest in this model is as a sociological experiment.  Any thought and deliberation that goes into a new way to do policy should be more measured and considered for the impacts it is likely to have on the citizenry.  Not an attitude of "well some people will get screwed, but that's okay because it's new and cool and it might work it's way out."  That's bullshit. 

I really think you are showing your lack of experience here.  Not only with a public policy system you have never been a part of, but with the actual people this will impact and those it will leave behind.  Maybe this would work in the Canadian system you are more familiar with.  Perhaps you should take this to Reality Check and see how that works out. 
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Cain on July 24, 2010, 01:18:33 pm
There is a very basic problem with all of this, which is expecting people to act rationally in a society which punishes and sidelines those who do it.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: AFK on July 24, 2010, 01:53:12 pm
I'm interested in the underlying beliefs in the different sides.  CU seems to think that citizens can make the best legislative decision for themselves, and opposition seems to think that e-democracy isn't feasible because popular whim falls short of sensible governance.

Societies and communities are very complex.  They have very complex issues.  Sometimes an issue has a simple solution.  Kids in neighborhood A have nothing to do after school.  There is an empty lot in neighborhood A.  Let's build a playground.  Done.  Though, even there, I would argue there are layers that not every citizen is going to be able to understand.  Such as all the regulations around property, zoning, traffic flow around the location, etc.  But then there are the really complex issues.  Medical marijuana.  As someone who is involved both in public policy and substance abuse prevention, I can attest at just how complex this issue is for those of us with the education, background, and knowledge.  I can't begin to imagine how your average citizen could give an informed opinion on this issue.  And it's all the more reason you don't want a structure in place where initiatives can come up for vote at will.  I would argue the average citizen wouldn't have enough time to do the proper research into the issue to give an educated opinion.  Certainly, that is an issue we have currently.  But I think it is better to have a predictable, yearly time frame compared to a haphazard process where an issue may come up 2 months from now, 2 years from now, or 2 weeks from now. 

I also think that there has to be some level of expertise present when it comes to making policy.  Again, because of the complexity of issues and how they entwine with other issues and laws.  So it's not only that it wouldn't be sensible, I think on balance it would be less informed. 
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Jasper on July 24, 2010, 03:49:20 pm
So why don't we have more focus on representatives who are above all else, knowledgeable and up-to-date on things, rather than reps who, above all else, adhere to a nebulous political faction?
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 24, 2010, 04:21:08 pm
Funny story.  So we have an alcohol enforcement officer here in my community.  A big chunk of his salary was coming from the state office of substance abuse.  they announced that funding was shriveling like a prune.  We discovered we weren't going to have enough money to pay for the officer.  We contacted our state senator, told her the story.  Through the magic of the legislation process, she found a pot of money to funnel to the police department so that work could continue.  Want to take a guess at how long all that took? 

I not saying that all old is bad and all new is good.  Certainly, I expect the kind of interaction you describe happens all the time.

So why do you want to turn it on its ear?

I don't.  Two paragraphs later I explain why I think it would be awesome that people with connections could still use them, while bringing some of that utility to a wider audience.


The problem isn't the system.  The problem is the people using, or not using, the system.  Your socialogical experiment may or may not change the mindset of some people, but at what cost?

Please see my last response to Kai (http://www.principiadiscordia.com/forum/index.php?topic=25822.msg901372#msg901372).


That's why I say, and will stand firm on this, your eneregy is much better spent designing programs and initiatives to mobilize people.  To get them to be more engaged. 

The current system is designed to limit decision making privileges to monied external forces while creating a pleasant illusion of control for the electorate.  The current system is designed to extract the maximum amount of milk from a docile herd.

Without fundamental changes to that equation, nothing will change.

Programs and initiatives within a rigged game may score minor victories, but those concessions are meaningless to the bigger picture and the larger trends, neither of which the people have any say in.


You are making a huge assumption that just because it is online and people get to vote more often, tht this is somehow going to make them more active.

Why is that a huge assumption, and not just obvious?


And then I really think you are copping out by putting in this proxy idea.  So that the people who don't want to to vote just give up their vote to someone else.

That is a misrepresentation.  Proxy-voting would work in two distinct ways - either you proxy your entire vote, or you identify specific types of issues for which you think an acquaintance in your social network or a known leader could make a better decision than yourself.

It would be rare to proxy your entire vote, even children playing with the system would be unlikely to proxy their vote to their parents for very long.


The corruption issues aside, that would tend to breed more apathy.  Plus, I can just see people scalping their votes.  More corruption.

Take Health Care reform.  In 2009, $1.4 billion was spent in lobbying.  So let's see roughly what the average bribe would be if you instead spent that money trying to convince half the population of the US to sell their vote.

  $1,400,000,000 / (307,006,550 / 2) = $9.12

Nine dollars and twelve cents.  For every person who would demand $20, you'd need to find two willing to accept $5.  But since every vote is equal, once word got out that some people were getting $20, it'd become a sellers market.  Anyone who accepted less would increase the pot for the remainder.

Open Secrets (http://www.opensecrets.org/lobby/) pegs the total amount spent on lobbying in 2009 as $3.49 billion -- healthcare was an extraordinary single chunk of that.  So for regular day-to-day voting issues, the pot would be much smaller.  In fact, this is how much an average American could expect to make in bribes in such a system:

  $3,490,000,000 / 307,006,550 = $11.37

Do you really believe that corruption would be a big issue?


Would having smaller issues to vote upon increase or decrease the motivation to corrupt the system?

Would having smaller issues to vote upon increase or decrease the number of people who hold that motivation?

Even if selling your vote was made legal - improbable, but I'll grant possible - could such an enterprise be pulled off without it becoming public knowledge?
  Would selling your vote be stigma neutral?


Anyway, I've answered a lot of your questions - can you have a go with these?
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 24, 2010, 04:32:30 pm
There is a very basic problem with all of this, which is expecting people to act rationally in a society which punishes and sidelines those who do it.

Sure - but I don't expect society to remain static.  I expect society would be changed by such a system.  The question is how, and I'm trying to use the motivations of the stakeholders to determine which outcome is most likely.


So why don't we have more focus on representatives who are above all else, knowledgeable and up-to-date on things, rather than reps who, above all else, adhere to a nebulous political faction?

That would be great, but how do you do that in a rigged game, and when the population is so detached from the political process that they don't care enough about the difference.

Is Alan Grayson awesome?  Hell yes!  Is he one of the most knowledgeable representatives in congress, or is his value in the zingers he delivers and the causes he supports?  Err...
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Cain on July 24, 2010, 06:02:44 pm
So why don't we have more focus on representatives who are above all else, knowledgeable and up-to-date on things, rather than reps who, above all else, adhere to a nebulous political faction?

Technocrats tend to be, above and beyond the average person, intensely political and rather prone to secrecy.

Which in fact describes the status quo rather nicely (Voltaire's Bastards is an excellent book on this topic)
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Jasper on July 24, 2010, 06:21:48 pm
What about a mixture?  Technocrats who must work with community types?  The problem seems more intractable the more I think about it.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Kai on July 24, 2010, 06:32:39 pm
Why don't you summarize a situation in statements about forces and motivations and I'll evaluate those? But YES, I will evaluate based upon historical evidence (ie shit that's already happened) because no one, even you, can evaluate rationally based upon anything else. Bayesian reasoning requires priors to calculate a resultant, and those priors are not pulled out of thin air. Otherwise the chance of them actually correlating to reality is a coin toss, zero knowledge and zero ability to anticipate reality.

And don't tell me you can do away with priors when predicting reality, because that will be an outright lie.

Okay, thanks - let's run with RWHN's concern about fluidity - voters changing their minds too frequently, as with in his experience in Maine with a referendum one year which spawns another the next designed to cancel it out.  And let's start with his example - a population takes a law off the books regarding headlights and windscreen washers, an accident results and they then seek to re-implement it as soon as possible.

First, what informs you that people would seek to reimplement it as soon as possible? What historical precedent is there for people rationally correcting a mistake given the opportunity? How often, how regularly, do people correct simple mistakes given the opportunity. I think you will find that the answer is "not often". Under such a system as e-democracy the lack of participation would be as low as it is now, and you have no evidence to show people would actually participate more AND show more informed decisions. When we look around the Internet, the same issues of tribalism and irrationality are just as definite as they are outside the internet.

Quote
I think that example is entirely plausible under an e-democracy system.  The main question I'm trying to answer is how many times will similar problems crop up in a population over time - does the frequency stay high, does it increase or decrease significantly?

Given the propensity of humans to make quick irrational decisions based upon minimal evidence, this frequency will stay high.

Quote
Does an incident, such as that, provide any motivation to consider future issues more carefully?

This assumes humans will actually learn from mistakes on a higher proportion than they fail to learn from their mistakes.
 
Quote
If so, is the level of that motivation proportional to the disaster/observed problem?

The level of motivation is proportional to the observed problem, but, that does not mean people would make informed rational decisions instead of irrational instantaneous decisions made in panic.

Quote
Do the actors in such a population have a motivation to avoid the fluidity problem, with legislation swinging from one extreme to the next?
  If so, does that motivation marginalise partisanship or increase it?

Quote
Would the implementation of such a system increase or decrease the quantity of political/civic discussion in a population?
  Would the quality be affected, if so, how?

Yes, to the former and no to the latter. The quality of discussion would be the same as always. People do not "get smarter" just because of a new software system.

Quote
Over time, would participation in such a system increase or decrease the amount of responsibility an individual felt about the power of their vote?

Everyone votes for the president. You tell me how powerful that makes the average individual feel.
 
Quote
If it's increased, does that make an individual more or less likely to change their mind when confronted with convincing evidence?

It won't be increased. In fact, the level of power may be greatly DECREASED, because every vote can be easily overrided by two others. Look at what happened in California with Prop 8.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Captain Utopia on July 24, 2010, 08:32:43 pm
Why don't you summarize a situation in statements about forces and motivations and I'll evaluate those? But YES, I will evaluate based upon historical evidence (ie shit that's already happened) because no one, even you, can evaluate rationally based upon anything else. Bayesian reasoning requires priors to calculate a resultant, and those priors are not pulled out of thin air. Otherwise the chance of them actually correlating to reality is a coin toss, zero knowledge and zero ability to anticipate reality.

And don't tell me you can do away with priors when predicting reality, because that will be an outright lie.

Okay, thanks - let's run with RWHN's concern about fluidity - voters changing their minds too frequently, as with in his experience in Maine with a referendum one year which spawns another the next designed to cancel it out.  And let's start with his example - a population takes a law off the books regarding headlights and windscreen washers, an accident results and they then seek to re-implement it as soon as possible.

First, what informs you that people would seek to reimplement it as soon as possible? What historical precedent is there for people rationally correcting a mistake given the opportunity? How often, how regularly, do people correct simple mistakes given the opportunity. I think you will find that the answer is "not often".

It was RWHN's example, not mine.  I don't think he was stressing rationality as being behind the rapid switches.

I'm glad we were able to come to an agreement on the outcome of the fluidity issue.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: AFK on July 24, 2010, 09:09:45 pm
Funny story.  So we have an alcohol enforcement officer here in my community.  A big chunk of his salary was coming from the state office of substance abuse.  they announced that funding was shriveling like a prune.  We discovered we weren't going to have enough money to pay for the officer.  We contacted our state senator, told her the story.  Through the magic of the legislation process, she found a pot of money to funnel to the police department so that work could continue.  Want to take a guess at how long all that took? 

I not saying that all old is bad and all new is good.  Certainly, I expect the kind of interaction you describe happens all the time.

So why do you want to turn it on its ear?

I don't.  Two paragraphs later I explain why I think it would be awesome that people with connections could still use them, while bringing some of that utility to a wider audience.

But the wider audience has those connections already.  They just don’t use them.  You model does nothing to alleviate that.  It makes the assumption that people will show up.  It doesn’t explain how you get them to show up and participate in the first place. 


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The problem isn't the system.  The problem is the people using, or not using, the system.  Your socialogical experiment may or may not change the mindset of some people, but at what cost?

Please see my last response to Kai (http://www.principiadiscordia.com/forum/index.php?topic=25822.msg901372#msg901372).

Neato.  Now answer MY question. 

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That's why I say, and will stand firm on this, your eneregy is much better spent designing programs and initiatives to mobilize people.  To get them to be more engaged.

The current system is designed to limit decision making privileges to monied external forces while creating a pleasant illusion of control for the electorate.  The current system is designed to extract the maximum amount of milk from a docile herd.

But under your system, the Senators and Reps are still there right?  So you aren’t changing that part at all.  But now you are throwing a monkey wrench into the state and local systems which actually do allow a fair amount of influence on the part of the citizenry.  And again, in the process, you are leaving people behind. 

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You are making a huge assumption that just because it is online and people get to vote more often, tht this is somehow going to make them more active.

Why is that a huge assumption, and not just obvious?

Because it is already incredibly easy for someone to vote and have their voice heard.  Especially in states with absentee voting.  You can practically vote any time you want now.  Your system may be cool and novel for the 20 something Facebookers, but you are kidding yourself if you think that is an actual legitimate representation of the entire country, or even an entire community.  There are only certain segments of the population who will key into this. 

What about the elderly?  How are you going to make sure they are represented when they aren’t exactly hip with computers? 


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And then I really think you are copping out by putting in this proxy idea.  So that the people who don't want to to vote just give up their vote to someone else.

That is a misrepresentation.  Proxy-voting would work in two distinct ways - either you proxy your entire vote, or you identify specific types of issues for which you think an acquaintance in your social network or a known leader could make a better decision than yourself.

You mean, *gasp* a person to represent your vote?  Why does that sound familiar?  Hmmm……

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It would be rare to proxy your entire vote, even children playing with the system would be unlikely to proxy their vote to their parents for very long.

What do you mean by “entire vote”.  How does someone make half a vote?  That doesn’t make a lick of sense. 

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The corruption issues aside, that would tend to breed more apathy.  Plus, I can just see people scalping their votes.  More corruption.

Take Health Care reform.  In 2009, $1.4 billion was spent in lobbying.  So let's see roughly what the average bribe would be if you instead spent that money trying to convince half the population of the US to sell their vote.

  $1,400,000,000 / (307,006,550 / 2) = $9.12

Nine dollars and twelve cents.  For every person who would demand $20, you'd need to find two willing to accept $5.  But since every vote is equal, once word got out that some people were getting $20, it'd become a sellers market.  Anyone who accepted less would increase the pot for the remainder.

Open Secrets (http://www.opensecrets.org/lobby/) pegs the total amount spent on lobbying in 2009 as $3.49 billion -- healthcare was an extraordinary single chunk of that.  So for regular day-to-day voting issues, the pot would be much smaller.  In fact, this is how much an average American could expect to make in bribes in such a system:

  $3,490,000,000 / 307,006,550 = $11.37

Do you really believe that corruption would be a big issue?

Your red herring aside.  Yes, I do.  If Organization X wants to pass Proposition 23, and it knows that under this proxy bullshit someone is able to give up their vote to someone else or some organization, there will be massive incentive to try to buy those votes and to corral them.  Especially if they can get them for cheap.  And it will all be under the table and very hard to prove. 




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Would having smaller issues to vote upon increase or decrease the motivation to corrupt the system?

Would having smaller issues to vote upon increase or decrease the number of people who hold that motivation?

That question isn’t even based in reality.  You have no control over whether issues are small or large unless somehow you are able to harness and drive society itself.  Healthcare was huge because it was neglected for many decades. 

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Even if selling your vote was made legal - improbable, but I'll grant possible - could such an enterprise be pulled off without it becoming public knowledge?
  Would selling your vote be stigma neutral?

If selling your vote was made legal, we’d be even more fucked than we already are.  Corporations would amass even more power than they already have. 
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: AFK on July 24, 2010, 09:15:07 pm
Captain Utopia,

I'd like to issue you a little challenge.  Can you produce research that actually validates any of your theories?  In my world, aka the real world, policy initiatives need to be evidence based.  It needs to be more than just a philosophy, you need to be able to cite and prove the assertions you make.  What research do you have that would suggest that this system would actually result in a system that was more conducive to participation and better representation in the public policy arena. 

Can you do that? 

If not, I'm out of this.  Because honestly, while I commend your creativity, this is fantasy land stuff for all the reasons I've mentioned in this thread.  I see no basis in reality how this would work to serve the people better than they are served now. 
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on December 30, 2014, 02:17:35 pm
BUMP
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Cain on December 30, 2014, 02:20:28 pm
LOL @ RWHN calling someone out on theories which have little empirical grounding.

LOL, I say.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on December 30, 2014, 02:21:14 pm
LOL @ RWHN calling someone out on theories which have little empirical grounding.

LOL, I say.

Still giggling.   :lol:
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: LMNO on December 30, 2014, 03:51:09 pm
If, in fact, a majority of Californians decide they don't want gay marriage, then I'd still try to change their minds, but I'd accept that decision in the meantime.

No problem.  I don't like you having freedom of assembly, or speech for that matter.  If I can get enough people to agree with me, should I be able to keep you from meeting with associates or speaking your mind?

Yeah, why the hell not?  The only thing stopping you from doing that today, is the same thing which would stop you tomorrow - the difficulty in convincing a majority that it is a good thing.


So we toss out the rule of law. 

Oh, yeah.  That'll work.  The next cycle of conservativism that hits America would lead to more fun than you could shake a truncheon at.


Dok Howl seems to be Propheteering again.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on May 24, 2018, 07:55:24 pm
If, in fact, a majority of Californians decide they don't want gay marriage, then I'd still try to change their minds, but I'd accept that decision in the meantime.

No problem.  I don't like you having freedom of assembly, or speech for that matter.  If I can get enough people to agree with me, should I be able to keep you from meeting with associates or speaking your mind?

Yeah, why the hell not?  The only thing stopping you from doing that today, is the same thing which would stop you tomorrow - the difficulty in convincing a majority that it is a good thing.


So we toss out the rule of law. 

Oh, yeah.  That'll work.  The next cycle of conservativism that hits America would lead to more fun than you could shake a truncheon at.


PROPHECY.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: LMNO on May 24, 2018, 08:57:12 pm
 :magick:
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Cramulus on May 24, 2018, 09:55:46 pm
WOW, as soon as I saw this thread....  :horrormirth:



But related to the topic --- did you guys see that Maine adopted Instant Runoff Voting? Can't believe it's actually a Thing now.


Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on May 29, 2018, 07:03:18 pm
https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/democrats-california-conundrum-could-cost-them-the-house/ar-AAxZ3nA?ocid=spartanntp
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on August 18, 2018, 09:21:37 pm
But nobody elects them.  Why?  Possibly because of brainwashing, but another possibility is that just because the 3rd parties are funnier, doesn't mean they're better.

Duverger's Law.  No exceptions.

I dunno though.  Is the green party really that hysterical compared to dems or repubs?

BUMP  :lulz:
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: purpleXi on November 13, 2020, 08:38:47 pm
I thought that it might be fun to catch up on this thread and see how those ideas held up 10 years later.

I couldn't make it halfway through the first post without boring myself senseless.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on November 13, 2020, 08:44:35 pm
If, in fact, a majority of Californians decide they don't want gay marriage, then I'd still try to change their minds, but I'd accept that decision in the meantime.

No problem.  I don't like you having freedom of assembly, or speech for that matter.  If I can get enough people to agree with me, should I be able to keep you from meeting with associates or speaking your mind?

Yeah, why the hell not?  The only thing stopping you from doing that today, is the same thing which would stop you tomorrow - the difficulty in convincing a majority that it is a good thing.


So we toss out the rule of law. 

Oh, yeah.  That'll work.  The next cycle of conservativism that hits America would lead to more fun than you could shake a truncheon at.


Dok Howl seems to be Propheteering again.

AND YA DON'T STOP
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: purpleXi on November 13, 2020, 08:50:58 pm
Yeah, that didn't hold up so well.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: LMNO on November 16, 2020, 01:13:59 pm
I didn't go through the whole thing again, but I'm kind of ashamed that even after 5 pages, no one brought up the simple fact that this relies on having an internet connection and the technology to use it, instantly disenfranchising the most vulnerable poor.
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Cain on November 16, 2020, 01:34:43 pm
If we had voted for Jeremy Corbyn we could have had a national fibre-optic broadband internet project to do something exactly like that.

But no, we had to vote for Boris Fucking Johnson instead...
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Bovine19 on November 17, 2020, 01:38:12 am
LOL
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: purpleXi on November 17, 2020, 02:34:09 am
I didn't go through the whole thing again, but I'm kind of ashamed that even after 5 pages, no one brought up the simple fact that this relies on having an internet connection and the technology to use it, instantly disenfranchising the most vulnerable poor.
I recall RWHN arguing that very point for at least half a dozen pages, despite it presenting less of a financial or institutional barrier than completing basic tax filings required to claim benefits.

On the plus side, that thing about the app that would allow you to scan goods in the store and decide which of the six global corporations you wanted to boycott for a day, did come to pass - but unfortunately it failed to foil capitalism as predicted :/
Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: Doktor Howl on April 07, 2021, 05:24:01 pm
The very best thing about this thread, from start to finish, is the assumption on damn near everyone's part that a better-educated electorate would vote for 3rd party candidates.

 Like, say, Ross Perot or Jill Stein.   Or Gary Johnson.

:lulz:

Another assumption made was that "uncompromising" was a virtue, rather than a character defect.

"Government" is by definition an establishment that governs.

To govern:  conduct the policy, actions, and affairs of (a state, organization, or people). - Oxford Dictionary

After the last 4 years, does anyone here still think populism is the way to go?  Because that's what kneejerk 3rd party-ism IS, after all.  A reaction to the "elites" in the democractic and republican parties that is resolved by seeking a "man of the people" ("someone I could have a beer with") who is out for my best interest (HAW HAW HAW).  How much actual governing got done?  Are we better off or worse off after 4 years of that bullshit?

Title: Re: E-Democracy
Post by: POFP on May 24, 2021, 05:09:17 am
Considering voting, and much more sensitive communication-based Structures in government now rely on the Internet and various Software-based technologies anyways, I don't see any issues with Democracy (Representative) existing on a more instantaneous medium like the Internet. There are plenty of standard security practices that are effective enough at that scale, it's not that big of a deal. With the right Software design, it could even make the governmental Architecture easier to understand for the layman.

I would like to say, I'm intrigued by the Proxy Voting System, not as a primary form of voting, but maybe as an extremely transient and optional feature when looking to vote in Elections, and more supported when voting on actual Legislation. The main concern I have with this being used in Elections (Where votes should be Anonymous), however, is potential bad actors saying one thing to gain Proxy Votes in order to actually direct them at the exact opposite Nominee that the Proxiers expected. Destabilization of the structure would be extremely easy in this case. Proxying should be extremely restricted or not allowed for Elections. This is not an issue when voting on Legislation, however, since Legislation Votes should be Public, just as they are now (When cast by Representatives of course - Not in the case of Direct Democracy, which I don't agree with for reasons Dok et al have already clarified.).

Personally, I think this thread has been looking at the Voting and Legislative process problems from the wrong angle (To be fair, I only read the first few pages, some pages in the middle, and the last few pages, so some of this may have been brought up here or other places already.). The problems in today's society are generally caused by Legal/Late Stage Capitalism's (Different from Free Market Capitalism, in that the State has formalized and blessed its natural failures and Monopolies.) natural support for Hierarchical, Bureaucratic Organizational Structures through:

- Overcomplication of legal and business processes

- Hoarding/Gatekeeping of knowledge of these processes within highly specialized Domains of the Private Sector

We solve these problems by enforcing simplification of Legislation through standardization of its language, and through the use of Encapsulation (Often used in Programming and other linguistics fields to establish intuitive Abstraction Layers within written Instruction that allow you to reference groups of smaller instructions with simpler high-level instructions.).

Basically, if you can't represent your legislation in a recursive drop-down tree of standardized, reusable instructions, conditions, and ideas, it's not structured enough to be acceptable. Object/Domain-orientation can also be applied for further high-level organization.

Why treat legislation like Software? Because Legislation is a formal, syntactically specific form of instruction, and because States all over are already starting to do this (kind of) as they've begun transcribing legislation and legal codes into websites. Recursive linking is already implemented through the Article, Section, etc. Structure. This should be extrapolated out into the fundamental syntax of legal language. The establishment of a structured syntax standard that specializes in Object/Domain Orientation and Encapsulation would make it easier for the Layman to understand the Legislation being voted on without requiring a Law Degree or special training. It also increases re-usability of Legislation Components in the same way it makes Software Modules reusable. It would facilitate the average Citizen's ability to drag and drop high-level Legislative snippets and ideas into a proposed bill as high-level components (That still contain all the low-level, expanded legalese that make up those components) and submit the full proposals in almost no time at all, even using popular/preferres components from existing and successful pieces of Legislation. If done properly, it should be possible for someone in the Electorate to identify a problem and submit fully functional, repeatable Legislation in a day that can be quickly assessed and amended by the Legislature before going to a vote.

This Architecture, of course, would require collaboration between teams of Linguistics experts, Software Architects and Engineers, Lawyers, Teachers, and Community Organizers to ensure that current Local, State, and National Legislation is properly transcribed ("Properly" meaning, it meets the suggested criteria of being modular, while also being linguistically inclusive of the layman and internationalized with accurate translations to other languages.), and we would need to standardize the Software Solution and open the Source for transparency and Community-based Hardening. But it wouldn't be as expensive or time consuming to implement as you might think.

The next problem, after you've made Legislation uniform and accessible, is the distribution of Democratic Power, and destruction of unnecessary Bureaucracy. No more of this City Manager + City Council + Cabinet + Department Head Appointee, stretch each layer of Hierarchy between elected positions upward as much as possible bullshit. If we want a Meritocracy, we need to structure the Democracy in the same way that Meritocratic Domain Specialization naturally occurs, and we need to make sure each layer in the Hierarchy is subject to Democratic oversight by the layer below AND the layer above (Above -> Merely by representation instead of Direct Democracy; Below -> By Election/Delegation of Members and Intent upwards to fill higher levels/tiers).

I recommend a modified form of Participatory Politics, where Democratic Hierarchies in all branches of government are formed as needed from the ground up through Community organization around Governing Domains (Hierarchies of Categorization of Legislation topics, as well as governing jurisdiction by population density and location.). My primary concern with it's suggested implementation on Wikipedia is that everyone is required to participate as a council member at the bottom rung, at least. I think we could easily replace the structure of the current State's major components with something that resembles their proposed "Parpolity" structure without replacing it entirely with a system where every single person is directly involved, since a significant number of people won't care to be involved in government and their involvement will likely impede those who do care. Besides, I think the assumption in their proposed implementation was that anyone who wasn't involved was simply ignored by the system, either defaulting non-participants to Anarchism or surrounding State Rule, which is hilariously unrealistic. As long as the Electoral and Legislative Proposal processes are open to all citizens that fall under corresponding Jurisdictions, Agencies, Legislatures, and Courts, I think we're okay with actual Council participation being optional, but immediately accessible by the individual, if preferred. It's also important not to lose the current Organizations and Infrastructure that currently exist by rebuilding each Agency/Legislature/Court from the ground up again. It's possible to transition existing Organizations to the new Structure and re-adjust the scale afterwards as needed using the new system's predefined processes.

The structure ultimately ensures:

- Cancellation of Mob Rule through Randomized Courts at each Council Tier, made up of individuals within the Scope of that Council's jurisdiction.

- Scope of Legislation is restricted to the Scope of the proposing Council (And all its corresponding and represented, but non-governing citizens in its jurisdiction) downward

- Hierarchy is established from the bottom up, instead of the top down, ensuring stratification is minimized to what is deemed necessary by the lower levels to ensure adequate domain specialization, representation, and specificity.

It's also suggested that Parecon (Participatory Economics) is paired with this to ensure similar Democratization of the Means of Production, but I have the same concerns with this structure that I had with the other. I think we've seen enough Democratic Workplace structures succeed (Like Co-Ops, and similar structures.) that we can come up with a mix that enforces Socialization of the Means of Production without resulting in a planned economy like they suggest. Market Socialism is probably ideal, and I think it would be best implemented using concepts from Parecon - Not the whole thing. Mostly just the decentralized organization of Democratic Labor, but with Personal and Shared Ownership of Property giving way to a fully featured Market that is less likely to leave its constituents starving or dependent on Slave Labor or Planetary destruction to survive.

Happy to talk specifics, either in this thread, or in another. This was a very high-level overview.