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Debates Forum

Debates Forum

  1. Donation rwingett
    Ming the Merciless
    12 Dec '11 15:38
    The main oppositions to direct democracy seem to be that it would be too cumbersome and that people simply don't know enough about the issues to cast an intelligent vote. If we accept those complaints as being valid, then I have a proposal that would solve both.

    It assumes, of course, that voting would be done via your personal computer, that there is a national voting website and that every registered voter would have a personal voter page that he could access. Special voting kiosks would be made permanently available to those without their own computer.

    One way you could do things would be to manually cast your ballot on every piece of legislation as it came up for a vote. This would be subject to the two complaints above, however, and I suspect very few people would want to do that. So there are a couple of ways around the problem.

    On the national voting webpage, there would be any number of individuals or groups that would give their endorsement for, or against, any piece of legislation. I could check the ACLU endorsement, for example, and vote according to their recommendation without having to read all the legislation myself. Or I could check the endorsements of several groups and vote accordingly.

    But this still leaves me having to vote on every piece of legislation. The way to make that more manageable would be to tag your vote to a certain group, or groups, on your voter webpage. I could set it up so that my vote is automatically cast according to the ACLU endorsement. Or I could set it up to check the endorsements of several different groups and automatically vote whichever way has the most endorsements. If there were a tie, I'd get an email notice alerting me that I'd need to manually cast my ballot.

    To prevent people from tagging their vote and then forgetting about it forever, your settings would expire after, say, three months and would have to be manually reset. You'd have to go back in at least four times per year and recheck your settings, otherwise your vote would not be cast.

    So there you have it. Once again I have solved another of the world's problems.
  2. Subscriber Sleepyguy
    Reepy Rastardly Guy
    12 Dec '11 15:55
    Originally posted by rwingett
    The main oppositions to direct democracy seem to be that it would be too cumbersome and that people simply don't know enough about the issues to cast an intelligent vote. If we accept those complaints as being valid, then I have a proposal that would solve both.

    It assumes, of course, that voting would be done via your personal computer, that there is a ...[text shortened]... e cast.

    So there you have it. Once again I have solved another of the world's problems.
    So basically American Idol replaces the current system. Would there be singing?
  3. 12 Dec '11 16:52
    Originally posted by Sleepyguy
    So basically American Idol replaces the current system. Would there be singing?
    The current system is American Idol. I would also prefer better entertainment if possible. My suggestion would be to require the candidates to wear clown suits at every debate and stand over pools of water. A particularly egregious statement could be met with an immediate bath after their positive approval dropped below the specified threshold. We could be even more entertaining if we ensured that each candidate's votes were only tallied by those who favored other candidates. We could offer special prizes like campaign advisor appointments to those who scored high on certain voting measurements (like "most racist," "least informed," "most likely to murder." This would increase interest in our government and not significantly affect any policy matters (we know the only thing that happens is what is bought and paid for anyway.)
  4. Subscriber Sleepyguy
    Reepy Rastardly Guy
    12 Dec '11 17:25
    Originally posted by TerrierJack
    The current system is American Idol. I would also prefer better entertainment if possible. My suggestion would be to require the candidates to wear clown suits at every debate and stand over pools of water. A particularly egregious statement could be met with an immediate bath after their positive approval dropped below the specified threshold. We could ...[text shortened]... licy matters (we know the only thing that happens is what is bought and paid for anyway.)
    OK. Could we add that all Congress members must wear the logos of their corporate sponsors on their jackets? The bigger the sponsor, the bigger the logo, like NASCAR.
  5. 12 Dec '11 17:39
    Originally posted by Sleepyguy
    So basically American Idol replaces the current system. Would there be singing?
    Personally I think there should be a bikini contest. We can't stand to listen to them so the least they could do is be easy on the eyes.
  6. Subscriber AThousandYoung
    Poor Filipov :,(
    12 Dec '11 17:48
    Originally posted by whodey
    Personally I think there should be a bikini contest. We can't stand to listen to them so the least they could do is be easy on the eyes.
    Suddenly an image of a grinning Herman Cain in a bikini just flashed across my mind.

  7. Subscriber Sleepyguy
    Reepy Rastardly Guy
    12 Dec '11 18:21
    Originally posted by AThousandYoung
    Suddenly an image of a grinning Herman Cain in a bikini just flashed across my mind.

    Nein! Nein! Nein!
  8. 12 Dec '11 18:22
    My main issue with direct democracy is that it does not weigh preferences. Your proposal does not address this.
  9. 12 Dec '11 18:34
    Originally posted by Sleepyguy
    OK. Could we add that all Congress members must wear the logos of their corporate sponsors on their jackets? The bigger the sponsor, the bigger the logo, like NASCAR.
    Well, Perry has a plan to end the direct election of Senators so we could just outlaw all Party labels and require them to run (or be appointed) as company representatives. We could apportion representation based on yearly profits. It is time we had honest government!
  10. Donation rwingett
    Ming the Merciless
    12 Dec '11 18:57
    Originally posted by KazetNagorra
    My main issue with direct democracy is that it does not weigh preferences. Your proposal does not address this.
    Not sure what you mean.
  11. 12 Dec '11 19:09
    Originally posted by rwingett
    Not sure what you mean.
    Someone who feels strongly about issue X is likely to vote for a party that has the same opinion about issue X. However, in a referendum on issue X people who feel strongly about X have equal weight as people who care only very little about issue X.
  12. 12 Dec '11 19:13
    Originally posted by rwingett
    The main oppositions to direct democracy seem to be that it would be too cumbersome and that people simply don't know enough about the issues to cast an intelligent vote. If we accept those complaints as being valid, then I have a proposal that would solve both.

    It assumes, of course, that voting would be done via your personal computer, that there is a ...[text shortened]... e cast.

    So there you have it. Once again I have solved another of the world's problems.
    I think it would be a good idea to test this approach on a small scale, maybe in a town government, and maybe in parallel with the existing government for a while.
  13. Donation rwingett
    Ming the Merciless
    12 Dec '11 19:18
    Originally posted by KazetNagorra
    Someone who feels strongly about issue X is likely to vote for a party that has the same opinion about issue X. However, in a referendum on issue X people who feel strongly about X have equal weight as people who care only very little about issue X.
    OK, I see your point, but I don't see that it's a terrible flaw. I don't see why the votes of the passionate should be given any more weight than anyone else's.
  14. Donation rwingett
    Ming the Merciless
    12 Dec '11 19:18
    Originally posted by JS357
    I think it would be a good idea to test this approach on a small scale, maybe in a town government, and maybe in parallel with the existing government for a while.
    Agreed. Make it so.
  15. 12 Dec '11 19:20
    Originally posted by rwingett
    OK, I see your point, but I don't see that it's a terrible flaw. I don't see why the votes of the passionate should be given any more weight than anyone else's.
    To protect the rights of minorities, mainly.