[EM] Public elections are the ones that matter
Abd ul-Rahman Lomax
abd at lomaxdesign.com
Tue Nov 15 07:36:35 PST 2005
At 03:26 AM 11/15/2005, James Green-Armytage wrote:
> What if the interest groups that Bush relies upon for support (e.g.
>evangelical groups, energy companies, etc.) were strongly opposed to the
>Iraq war in the first place? Do you think he would have made the same
>decision? I doubt it. Policy isn't formed exclusively by governments;
>other organizations often play a large role. More democratic organization
>of these groups could augment the popular impact on policy.
Mr. Green-Armytage and I must have some kind of telepathy thing going....
Actually, what I've been writing about these oh-so-many months is
really what almost anyone would come up with who spends some time
with the fundamental problem of government. The problem is that we
usually don't do that; we look at this or that smaller problem, such
as how to hold an election. It's not that these smaller problems
aren't important, they are. But they exist in a context, and until we
look at the context, we are not going to understand how to solve the problems.
The context is how people organize or are organized to cooperate and
coordinate. The great shift that has taken place over the last few
centuries is that it has come to be widely accepted that government
by the consent of the people is not only more just, it is more
efficient, and societies based in this, to the extent that they enjoy
broad consent, will be more successful, partly because when people
consent, they are more likely to actively participate, to bring all
they have to the table.
We are also coming to understand, better, what has been called the
"wisdom of crowds." It shouldn't be a big surprise, really. The
intelligence of the human brain is vastly greater than that of any
individual cell; indeed, something new comes into existence when
cells can communicate rapidly.
And if one looks at how cells are organized into a central nervous
system, and if one is familiar with the kind of structures that
delegable proxy would create, one could not fail to be struck by the
similarity: these are fractal structures, where each link in the
structure is a filter and repeater (i.e., it is a selective repeater).
It is a little unclear who first came up with the idea of delegable
proxy. I *may* have some documents showing priority, but not by long,
and it is quite clear to me that the idea arose independently in at
least four different places. I've been working on it, in my mind
mostly, for about twenty years, but I started writing extensively
about it only in 2002.
Delegable proxy is a formalization of what people already do. People
*do* act as representatives for each other, informally, all the time.
It is what makes many small organizations work. Formalizing it,
though, will create a far more reliable structure, wherein people
will know exactly how to communicate with the collective, and the
collective will know exactly how to communicate with the people.
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