More Elaboration of the Voting Process
This system does not provide for a secret ballot. To function at all, it must be completely transparent. Whomsoever you vote for is known to all who make that inquiry.
There is no voting season. It is a perpetual juggling of opinions as variable as the free market. You cast your vote(s), recall your vote(s) … and recast your vote(s) for someone else … whenever you desire … with a few mouse clicks. Or … you can let it ride for years at a time if you are satisfied with the way things are.
People who give you votes personally are your “immediate electors”. Those who have given their votes to your immediate electors are your “constituents”. If you fail to impress your electors with your political or philosophical acumen, they may withdraw their votes and if your vote total falls so that some remaining elector has given you greater than half your votes … his votes will automatically be sent back to him with the notification that you are now ineligible to take them. Thus, it is wise to obtain votes from many voters in roughly equal amounts in order to be less vulnerable to a cascading loss of votes due to constitutionally mandated returns.
Any representative must explain his actions and rulings to his immediate electors because they may withdraw their votes at any time for any reason. A representative can only maintain high office by pleasing his constituents.
Any voter can check the path his vote(s) take to the highest representative by computer inquiry. If there are 100,000,000 voters and each representative has about 10 electors … there will be about 8 representatives between the single vote cast and the highest representative (about 10^8). A computer inquiry will yield a path of eight people his vote has passed through. If he does not like someone in his path, he may recall his vote and attempt to give it to another immediate representative to reroute his path around the objectionable higher representative.
A single vote will not be able to influence decisions made at the top … but millions of vote changes cannot help but alter upper level decisions. Hence, political power comes from the bottom up rather than from the top down as it does now. We presently have no influence because we do not control the chain of command from the bottom. Decisions about who will run for office are determined secretly by individuals unknown to us.
The Payment of Representatives
“The difficulty is not ‘getting the job done’. It’s getting somebody to do it for nothing.” – EBTX
To drive the votes to a single highest representative, it would be presently necessary to pay them in proportion to the votes they represent. I did not include a payment provision in the stated chain of command because it is not an “eternal absolute”. I cannot state with confidence that economic considerations will even exist thousands of years from now. It may be that anything necessary to the maintenance of life will be as free as wild strawberries. If robotics and computerization continue apace for several more centuries, the cost of a home or vehicle or food and clothing may become too small to bother with any calculation or monetary transaction. You may just walk into an outlet and take what you want … or … design it yourself and push a button and voila! it is manufactured in your home in a few minutes.
Today … we still need money.
My suggestion is that a representative be paid at the rate of the average man’s salary per 1,000 votes represented. Thus, if you have 1,000 constituents, you may quit your day job and live modestly on your salary as a representative. We can then calculate the total cost of employment for this system for a given number of voters. We’ll do it for 111,111,111 voters and consider the average yearly salary to be $40,000. Then one vote represented equals $40 per year.
Note: These estimates are for illustration. All are variable.
- 1 (president) = $40 x 111,111,111 = $4,444,444,440
- 10 (supreme court) = $40 x 111,111,110 = $4,444,444,400
- 100 (senator)= $40 x 111,111,100 = $4,444,444,000
- 1000 (governor) = $40 x 111,111,000 = $4,444,440,000
- 10,000 (mayor) = $40 x 111,110,000 = $4,444,400,000
- 100,000 (alderman) = $40 x 111,100,000 = $4,444,000,000
- 1,000,000 (local rep) = $40 x 111,000,000 = $4,440,000,000
- 10,000,000 (hood rep) = $40 x 110,000,000 = $4,400,000,000
- 100,000,000 (citizen) = $40 x 100,000,000 = $ 4,000,000,000
That’s about 4 billion dollars per level for a total of ~44 billion dollars in salaries which is not much considering that the total budget of federal, state and local government (USA) is in the trillions.
What this payment schedule does is reduce to almost non-existence the possibility of bribery at the upper levels of government. If you are at the senator level, your yearly salary is 44 million dollars. All you have to do to maintain that income is do diligent service to your constituents who can dump you for the slightest impropriety and get someone else.
Now, someone in the chain of command is paid … if and only if … his votes have been advanced to the highest level. So, if someone does not advance the votes up the chain, no one below him gets paid for the time that those votes are not in the possession of the highest possible representative. This is the chief incentive to cast votes.
All incentives are made to drive the voting process to conclusion and that conclusion will end in a distillation of the best available personnel for the job, i.e. honorable men and women … in the same way that an unfettered free market will distill and proportionately reward the best and brightest.
Communication Between Levels of Representation
If you have collected a number of votes in your local area, you must seek out others whom you do not know … make their acquaintance … and decide whether to advance your votes through them or attempt to convince them to give you theirs.
A problem is how to find these people.
This can be done by setting up communication mechanisms which allow only those with a specified number of votes to contact you. Thus, if you are prepared to offer or receive votes on the scale of 10,000 to 15,000 votes at a time, you may not wish to take offers from those in the 100 vote range. Understand that you must personally meet with whomsoever you receive votes from. Votes cannot be sent to you anonymously. This is the mechanism that allows anyone to run for office without needing cash to make himself known to the public. There are no posters on the lawn advertising candidates. No one needs to know you except those whom you directly contact in seeking their vote(s).
You could have a special phone number that your prospective electors could call which only someone with the specified quantity of votes would qualify to obtain. Then, you’d only get called on that number by representatives of roughly equal rank. Because you must deal with your immediate electors face to face, it is impossible to deal with a million electors. You are forced to obtain ever larger blocks of votes from only a few people.
Your immediate electors would have another number to call and your constituents further down the chain of command might access you only by email. With the advent of computerization, it has become easy to make such arrangements and the possible types of communication are also increasing.
Proving Your Immediate Electors are Personnel Acquaintances
The purpose of this requirement is to force face to face meetings. By this mechanism the need for large sums of money to get elected is removed. And … individual judgement is at its best when close interaction occurs. You are less likely to be deceived as your knowledge of the other party increases.
Because the voting process is open, anyone can see how many electors a representative has and who they are. If one claims 5000 immediate electors, skeptical voters will demand proof of personal meetings. Thus, if you claim excessive personal relationships, you must back up those claims by giving information about your immediate electors that one would be expected to know. If the representative cannot provide such information or refuses to give it … he is discredited and would appear to be in violation of the voting rules.
“The proof is in the details … but not the minor details” – EBTX