[EM] Conceiving a Democratic Electoral Process

Fred Gohlke fredgohlke at verizon.net
Sun Jul 22 14:22:22 PDT 2012

Good Afternoon, Juho

re: "Maybe party leadership would be forced to change party
      opinions if there was such a direct channel (that could
      e.g. cancel support to politicians that do not react to
      the wishes of the voters)."

That's true.  That's the way it works now.  Parties cannot anticipate or 
forestall public problems, they can only react when those problems 
become such a burden on their members they can no longer be ignored.  By 
the time parties change their focus (if they do), the problems have 
usually become insurmountable, like the crushing debt now plaguing much 
of Europe (and, soon, the United States).

The fact that parties are, and can only be, reactive is one of the 
reasons they are ruinous.  Another reason, of course, is that they are 
conduits for corruption.

re: "... but using candidates that have been nominated by
      a party ... Those people might not be negotiation ortiented
      but winning and strategy oriented.  The negotiation process
      might be for them just negotiation tactics without any
      intention to change opinions or learn from others."

You describe the reason party candidates do not serve the public:  They 
don't care about solving public problems, they only care about winning. 
  Let me point out that, when they must compete with other candidates 
who have a deeper concern for the people, candidates who are only 
winning- and strategy-oriented will have difficulty advancing.

re: "Maybe triads work best when the participants are not
      political persons."

They do not have to be politicians whose stock-in-trade is deceit and 
obfuscation, but they do have to interact well with their peers in order 
to advance.  In that sense, they might be called political persons.

re: "If we start from low/local level and parties set the
      candidates, I might try giving the decision power on who
      will go to the next levels to the regular voters, and not to
      the candidates that may already be professional politicians."

That is certainly a possibility, although I think it unwise for several 

* as described in an earlier post, those at the lower levels can
   influence those at the higher levels.  Each candidate achieves
   selection by a known list of electors, so communication between
   the electors and the candidate is straightforward.  That
   capability is more important than voting; it lets the electors
   influence, not only the choice of candidates, but the public
   issues on which the candidates will be legislating.

* the 'regular voters' do not have the time, or a practical way,
   to verify a candidates' bona fides.

* at every level, the candidates have the time, the opportunity,
   and the vital interest to examine their competitors carefully.
   After all, they, too, are seeking to advance their candidacy.
   They have reason to protect their integrity, and will seek out
   any information that shows their competitors to be less fit
   than themselves.  The 'regular voters' do not have that kind
   of incentive to be thorough.

* the 'regular voters' can be too easily swayed by the media.
   Media frenzies tend to be emotional.  Deliberation on issues
   and examination of candidates, because they require time and
   effort, tend to be intellectual.


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