[EM] Parliamentary compromising strategy
ElectionMethods at VoteFair.org
Sun Mar 24 12:50:02 PDT 2013
On 3/23/2013 3:21 PM, Kristofer Munsterhjelm wrote:
... (details below)
> I'm not saying up is rich and down is poor "as such". I'm
> saying that in most democratic nations, the people prefer
> some wealth redistribution.
Putting it more strongly, every voter wants wealth redistribution.
> That is, special interests can block redistribution,
> but that doesn't mean up vs down is about wealth.
> Up vs down is about the degree to which the people
> get what they want, and redistribution is one of
> the things they want.
Putting it even more strongly, wealth redistribution is the most
important thing that voters care about. That's why prosperity favors
the politicians in power, and why economically bad times lead to elected
politicians not getting re-elected.
Left versus right is about conflicting desires for wealth
redistribution. I picture it as a "game" of "tug-of-war" (each side
pulling a rope, with the stronger-and-more-numerous side winning).
In the political map I'm describing, I picture "up" as having the
majority of voters and they want fair taxes and fair laws (and fair
I picture "down" as having the people and businesses who give the most
money (overall) to election campaigns. They want taxes and laws that
favor their specific business (or source of income). And they want to
control election outcomes.
(Clarification: Here in the U.S. each "industry" in the "down" direction
gives money to candidates in both the Republican party and the
Democratic party; details at: www.OpenSecrets.org The "industry"
category of labor unions is the only exception; they only give money to
Superimposed on this map is what I'll call "free candy." That's the
wealth redistribution that the "downers" (special interests) arrange for
government to give away "free" (at taxpayer expense) to bribe voters to
vote for the special-interest puppets who get elected. In other words,
rich selfish people distract voters from special-interest sweet deals
(tax breaks, etc.) with "free candy" -- social security, unemployment
compensation, tax rebates, etc. -- that cause voters to forget about the
unfair taxes and unfair laws (that benefit the downers).
The "free candy" can be categorized as wealth distribution. However,
the total value of the free candy given out is much, much less than the
total value of special-interest tax breaks, government contracts, legal
In other words, the vertical dimension I'm describing has "cooperation"
(including fair elections) in the "up" direction, and has "selfish
interests" in the "down" direction.
I realize that this is different from what most people picture. Yet
I've been told that this map of politics nicely clarifies what goes on
It also clarifies why the "democratic" world is currently in an economic
"recession" -- which is actually a depression if parliaments/congress
did not "cheat" on measuring unemployment and inflation. Selfish
interests have redistributed a major portion of wealth into their hands,
and that unfair, non-cooperative approach is not sustainable.
The majority of voters -- at the top -- in addition to wanting fair
taxes and fair laws, also want fair elections. In my opinion, if we had
fair elections, that would lead to fair taxes and fair laws.
In other words, fair elections would increase overall cooperation.
The influence of money in politics (because of vote splitting,
single-mark ballots, etc.) is what pulls us down, away from cooperation.
This happens in all existing democracies.
In that sense cooperation is everyone mostly getting along (with each
other) and everyone mostly getting what they deserve, without some
people getting a lot more than they deserve (which is what special
interests now get).
In case it isn't obvious, I get angry at unfairness. That is what
motivates me to work on election-method reform.
On 3/23/2013 3:21 PM, Kristofer Munsterhjelm wrote:
> On 03/23/2013 09:59 PM, Richard Fobes wrote:
>> On 3/21/2013 2:05 PM, Kristofer Munsterhjelm wrote:
>>> On 03/19/2013 03:08 AM, Richard Fobes wrote:
>>>> I continue to fail to understand why citizens think of politics as a
>>>> left-versus-right tug-of-war. That's what it used to be before special
>>>> interests hired election experts to advise them on how to take
>>>> of vote splitting.
>>>> Now, the much bigger gap is up-versus-down. The vast majority of
>>>> voters are "up" and the biggest campaign contributors are "down."
>>>> (The "downers" are also known as special interests.)
>>> Here, it seems that up vs down compresses a lot more, i.e. resolves
>>> itself. We're not perfect (by any means), but if income inequality is
>>> any metric, Norway's Gini coefficient is at around 26 while the United
>>> States exceeds 40 (and is around the same level as China last I
>> You seem to be picturing a vertical (up-versus-down) dimension that has
>> rich people at the top and poor people at the bottom. That is different
>> than what I'm describing.
> I'm about to leave the computer for the day, but I just thought I should
> clarify first.
> I'm not saying up is rich and down is poor "as such". I'm saying that in
> most democratic nations, the people prefer some wealth redistribution.
> Thus, given that the advanced democratic nations, even otherwise quite
> capitalist ones like Switzerland, have greater economic redistribution,
> the issue of redistribution can work as a kind of proxy.
> That is, special interests can block redistribution, but that doesn't
> mean up vs down is about wealth. Up vs down is about the degree to which
> the people get what they want, and redistribution is one of the things
> they want.
> Economic equality being a correlate, Norway is probably special in the
> other direction - i.e. it has more redistribution than can be explained
> by increasingly accurate democracy. But if it had had an easily
> compromised democratic system, special interests would have blocked it
> here, too.
> I'll get to the rest when I'm more awake :-)
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