Tuesday, August 9, 2011

True Democracy

I want to talk a little bit about democracy in the modern age.

The United States of America is a representative democracy. In essence, we elect leaders to represent our views and interests in the House of Representatives and the Senate. No doubt, when the system was created in the 18th century it was an imperfect system -- naturally, not everyone would get what they wanted, and unfortunately, even the majority might not always get their way. But, what I don't understand is now that we are in the 21st century with our computers and our cyber databases, why do we not simply have a pure democracy?



In other words, why do we still elect leaders to represent us? What is the use in representation in this day and age? Almost everyone has a computer, and so why not empower citizens to vote directly on legislation? How about "vote.gov" (is that taken??). Each citizen could cast a virtual ballot and verify their identity with their social-security number or some of form of identification. I see no argument here -- the people get what the people vote for. Majority rules. Democracy!

Or, for a less extreme and more realistic solution, how about each Congressional representative allow each of their constituents to vote online on upcoming bills. This will help Congressmen and women know how to vote to properly represent their respective districts. And their voting record could be compared with that of their constituents' to gauge their responsiveness to their own people, come re-election time.

What do YOU think? Should citizens be able to vote directly on laws without the Congressional "middlemen"? Is this a realistic idea?

20 comments:

  1. To me, this country doesn't even feel like a democracy anymore...

    All elections and votes are rigged for the benefit of the elites.

    Nice post by the way

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  2. It never works out, it is just which works the most at least. Nice post man.

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  3. you did good job here.

    also democracy has ended in ancient Athens in my opinion

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  4. I don't see a way it could be realistically implemented, but yeah, I think individuals should be able to vote directly on laws. Never understood the idea of electing an official that more than likely won't represent the stances of his/her constituents and instead what is beneficial to the public official.

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  5. Frankly, most Americans don't have the intelligence or motivation to cast an educated vote on any bill. Neither do most elected officials, for that matter.

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  6. I've flipped back and fourth on how effective an ultra democracy works out, its been done before and effectivly, but it depends on the scope of the laws the majority decide though. In most cases ultra democracy would be horrible unless they use it to decide on very few laws, which kind of misses the point.

    If you let the majority decide on every single law you'll almost definitely wind up with a homophobic, white power, theocratic patriarchy because that's what the majority constitute.

    Republicanism sucks, but having representatives is the closest way to have the people's choices in power while also protecting the minority from the whims of the majority. In theory. Like every system ever will be, its gamed to fuck and ruined.

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  7. I believe the Romans have enacted the imperfections of 'Democracy'. It is not perfect at all, I agree with your views on a true democracy. :D
    glad to have you back mate.

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  8. Hacktivists would rule the country if this were available here. Unless the computers/sites took a fresh dna sample for each vote.

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  9. Well, Avery, I think that the main point is: would you ask to build a bridge to a group of engineers or to a group of children?

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  10. its not really realistic to handle a few million people who are going to vote about every nonsense or to inform them about the latest poll/law/whatever
    the system may have some problems but to find a better one is (with all those millions of humans) not possible

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  11. You would need to make all people educated enough, so they would be able to make such complicated decisions.

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  12. Although it seems like a good idea on paper a large amount of people can be controlled very easily so everyone will still be manipulated

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  13. Defeats the point to the representative democracy, and really difficult to change the way the books are now... I cant imagine anyone giving up their power. Interesting points though.

    +followed

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  14. I have thought about this idea before, maybe not on the scale you have, IE, computers, but giving people a chance to vote, and this does happen sometimes. In England people got to vote themselves on whether or not they wanted AV voting, and we voted no, massively. Sure, we've had things we wouldn't have voted for, like the scrapping of EMA, no one wanted that, but there are some things we do get a vote on. In England at least, you can petition the government, and if a petition gets to 100,000 signatures (I think that's the number) then it does go to the government, they do address it. I don't think that we'll ever get something like what you suggest, and if we do, it won't be on computers, that wouldn't be fair, not everyone has one, and having a computer doesn't mean you have the net. I didn't have the internet all last week, if we had this system, I would have lost my vote for a week. People might not use their vote all the time, but they certainly care that they have one, and would care if they lost it.

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  15. Very interesting post! I like this political stuff. I don't think there's enough democracy in most of this planet.
    Check out my math blog

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  16. Democracy is very hard to maintain, because there will always be "those" people. You know them. You know them well.

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  17. Politics has essentially become geared entirely towards making a name for yourself while climbing the political ladder. The old motto remains true, as it always shall: the best suited to lead are those who do not seek to lead. Life is, as we know, imperfect. We are simply too entrenched in past ideals, where many of us do not understand the true idea behind various ideas on government because we have been raised to believe democracy is the only answer and that the way our government operates is absolute (else you be a "communist", rebel, or anarchist). The problem is it is difficult for a candidate to stand up and say "this is wrong. It must be changed." Why? Because all they care about is victory.

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  18. Not a huge fan of Politics, but still interesting.

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