[EM] Conceiving a Democratic Electoral Process
fredgohlke at verizon.net
Wed Jul 11 09:18:41 PDT 2012
Good Morning, Juho
re: "There may be also negative arguments against party control,
but aren't those given reasons rational reasons that aim at
creating the best possible and representative list of
candidates that drive the party values forward?"
Ya got me! I'd like to respond, but don't understand what you said.
In attempting to conceive a democratic electoral process, we seek an
electoral method that vests the power in the people. That's why we call
it democratic. Candidates "that drive the party values forward" empower
the party, not the people.
re: "I think I didn't refer to non-partisans. I meant that some
regular voters may become activists and form a new party if
thy are not happy with the existing parties."
That's quibbling. If they do not support the existing parties, they are
non-partisan, and non-partisans, as a group, "do not seek the ascendance
of one group of citizens over another". Why should they be denied a
right to representation in the government just because they do not
support a party that seeks to advance its own interest at the expense of
those who don't share its views?
re: "I'm happy to leave this point open since I see multiple
viable approaches that could be used by the various
societies of the world."
Really? And which of them will benefit the people when they do not give
the people a way to identify and avoid duplicitous politicians?
re: "Face-to-face approach offers some benefits but it has also
its problems, like long distance between the huge number of
individual voters ..."
Which says we must conceive an electoral method that lets the people
narrow the field, so fewer candidates must travel. Given the
availability of modern modes of travel, arranging face-to-face meetings
re: "Different needs and different history may lead to different
That's stating the obvious, since it already has. More pertinent is the
fact that the vast majority of different systems are not truly
democratic. They do not let the people seek their best advocates from
among themselves. They interpose parties between the people and their
re: (with regard to why there should be a limitation on
candidate nominations), "The reason is that I have
only time to evaluate max 100 candidates."
As you point out, there are practical ways to reduce the number of
candidates while assuring each member of the electorate the right to
participate in the process. Can you propose a better alternative, one
that empowers each and every one of us without forcing us to support
unknown, self-interested politicians incapable of suppressing greed and
avoiding war? Should not the goal of a conception of a democratic
political process be to allow every member of the electorate to
participate to the full extent of their desire and ability?
re: (with regard to the statement that, "To exclude these people
by setting arbitrary limitations is self-defeating."), you
asked, "Why were they arbitrary?"
They are arbitrary because those who impose the limitations arrogate to
themselves the right to deny some members of the electorate the right to
compete for election to public office, thus gutting the essence of
re: "Why not possible rational and balanced limitations that
might be used to keep the number of candidates manageable?"
"Rational and balanced limitations" in whose eyes? Certainly not the
eyes of those who are excluded. In what way does any person or group of
people gain the right to decide who shall be allowed to participate in
the political process and who shall not?
Keeping the number of candidates manageable is straightforward. The
first step is to let those who don't want to compete drop out and the
second is to let their peers decide which candidates are worthy of
re: "All potential candidates should be given a fair chance to
become candidates. That doesn't mean that we should allow
all interested people to becme candidates (because the list
might become too long)."
That is self-contradictory.
re: "(Again I note that your earlier hierarchical proposals
could allow all people to be candidates. But that's only
one possible solution to the problem.)
I, too, think there must be other solutions. Since you're sure the
hierarchical proposal is "only one possible solution to the problem", it
would be very helpful if you'd suggest others. We're looking for a
conception. We can't form one until ideas are outlined in sufficient
detail so they can be evaluated.
re: "Usually you can get the best end results if the core of the
proposal is made and kept in good shape by one person or a
small team of similar minded people."
I appreciate the effort you have devoted to this discussion and your
comments on "the list". While I'm not shy about stating my views on the
matter of a democratic political system, those views in and of
themselves are worthless. They'll pass with me.
The views that have value are hidden, in bits and pieces, among all of
us. Although I've written several goals, that was merely an attempt to
seed fallow ground. It is much more akin to the 'common' of years past
than to a private lot of my own. I've no wish for others to stand in
awe of the beauty of my fruit. I don't want to deny our peers the pride
and satisfaction one gets from seeing the fruits of their own labor. I
want them to bend their own backs. I want them to seed, water,
fertilize, cultivate and prune the plants so the entire community can
feast on their wisdom.
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