Jan 6 2019

This is #1 of 51.14 posts that will be written by Angus Malcolm Ramsey on each Sunday of 2019. The objective is simple the task is enormous. I want an answer to the question; is there a way to include everyone, not only in the process of electing a government but also in the making of law.

In 1996 I attempted to engage our government in the concept of participative democracy, with the moniker "Direct Democracy" and running as an independent candidate for our provincial legislature. I wasn't aware of it at the time but was told later that some of the ideas in my campaign had stimulated the new Gordon Campbell government into looking at the idea of a citizen's assembly in British Columbia. The new government quickly lost ideology, sank into the comfort of the establishment and the idea fizzled. Since then two attempts have be made to change the electoral process in BC from first past the post to proportional representation. The last failure broke my heart. But when one door closes another opens with even more opportunity.

I gave up for a time and then after sailing my homemade boat half way around the world I was enthused with the idea of engaging intellectuals (political scientists) in the endeavor. I became aware this approach was more difficult because If a person has not been properly indoctrinated with established ideology (don't have credentials) they are completely ignored by the publicly funded club of academia.

At last, the idea of following those who have been successful came to mind. The likes of Bill Gates, Steve Jobs, and Mark Zuckerberg did not rely on government or academia. Instead they relied on everyone by building empty platforms and asking the public to fill them. Build it and they will come.

If anyone has advice on finding a good app developer please let me know. I am about to engage an app developer in this enormous project.

There are three stages to producing an app.

  • Brainstorming which will cost $500.00

  • Blue printing which will cost $10,000

  • Coding which will cost $150,000 plus.

These are the services the app will provide to everyone, and the core of the idea.

  1. Everyone will be able to set up a free account by going to the app store. The system is based on information gathered from overlaying electoral maps and using the GPS location of the home address of the account holder. When the account holder taps the (20-20 GOV) app a screen will appear asking the account holder if they would like to log into their political account using the same kind of security banks use. If they choose to not log in they will find the first serviceoffered by the app, advertising from the likes of MacDonald's, Home Depot or news feeds. This is necessary to pay for the app.

  2. The second service is to provide government with a service on the app to live stream open and free debates.

  3. If the account holder chooses to log in they will find an absence of advertising and the third service; information to everyone who wants to know which politician is using the account holder's piece of political authority (POPA) to make law on four levels of government. Municipal (city, district, borough, county etc.), State, Province or Territory, Federal and who in the UN has been appointed to use their authority to make international law. On the same screen account holders will find postings from the government on that level regarding agendas in the legislature and time and dates of the votes etc. When the account holder selects a level of government by tapping the picture of the politician, who is using their political authority on whatever level of government, a new screen will open with a list of all the politicians on the same level of government in the account holder's jurisdiction. For example if a person with a GPS location of their home address in the USA selects the picture of the representative using their political authority on a federal level they will see a list of 535 voting members, 435 representatives and 100 senators. The politician using the account holder's POPA will be identified by a green dot. By tapping again on the politician's picture the account holder will find the postings the politician has put on the site. If the account holder would prefer to support a different politician on the same level it is a simple matter, anytime 365 days 24/7, of putting their finger on the green dot, when it begins to blink drag the dot to the politician they prefer and tap the green dot twice. This will initiate three emails for auditing purposes, one going to the account holder the other the politician who received their support and the last the government office.

  4. The fourth service is to give elected politicians a platform to post new ideas for better laws and explain why they vote yes or no to bills that may become law (legislation). This is what the account holder will see when they tap the politician's picture from the list of politicians.

  5. The fifth service is to give government bureaucracies a platform to post easily available schedule of time and date for votes on bills and proposed agendas.

  6. Thesixth service is to provide an accurate tally of support for each bill that becomes law. A snap shot of account holder support for politicians at the time of the vote will generate a number representing percentage of consensus (POC). For example at the time of the final vote on a new law to allow industrial intrusion into park lands in the USA a majority of politicians may vote yes, however the POC may only stand at 18% when everyone knows a number above 50% is required to make an effective and efficient law (political happiness). This service provides this number to everyone including the Judiciary, the Senate and the media who may want to publicly debate the question of legitimacy.

This is a tall order but sometimes these changes are meant to be. I need help. I need a team of dedicated people who have an interest insuring the children of today have a world as wonderful as we have had. What I have presented today is one idea but I know there are hundreds of undiscovered ways to put this insurance policy in place without making any significant changes to the way we make law. It is a simply matter of where the authority to make law comes from. I trust the wisdom of everyone rather than the wisdom of a few politicians.

If you know of anyone who may want to get involved please share this post and join my group: Political Happiness. Next week "Awareness of Madness" and an update on the app.YOUR TITLE

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Political Engineering

I know how difficult it is to initiate political change. When I talk about politics people roll their eyes indicating I am just another nutcase and I find it impossible to communicate. I like to think of politics as a stately old house. Activists get some support by pointing out that the visible part of the structure like the roof is leaking and in desperate need of repair. It seems I am the only one who has braved the spiders in the crawl space and noticed the foundation is crumbling. And then there are the ones in charge of the purse strings, the politicians, who shore up the sloping floors with libraries of useless laws and surreptitiously hang pictures of themselves on the walls of the redecorated entrance hall. I know if we fix the foundation the stress pulling apart the structural integrity of the roof will end, making it much easier to repair, and our politicians will be more efficient and effective in a building with level floors and vertical walls.

Even if I had the resources I know to repair the damage will take engineers and specialists who understand the stresses put on the structure. Unfortunately our universities for ethical or whatever reasons don't produce political engineers. My project is to convince Academia that we need political engineers if we want to upgrade and save our beautiful stately old building of politics. I think saving the building is possible and a much better idea than what I increasingly hear from the right that we should burn the Reichstag and start over with the likes of Donald Trump. Forgive me for talking in metaphors but I find the English language deficient when it comes to describing political ideas.

Political Engineering.

In 1968 I was eighteen and part of the counter-culture revolution. We were aware that we shouldn't trust anyone over thirty because they were indoctrinated with nineteenth century Machiavellian political ideals. The concept of peace, love and political equality filled me and I think my contemporaries with an absolute knowledge that within a decade or two this understanding would end war, poverty, corruption and we would be able to live in a new world of peace and happiness. For the last five decades I have searched for people or groups who haven't given up on the ideals of political equality. As so many have said, we all want it but there is no political will to change.

I am a technophile and can't help but see the answer to political will is staring us in the face. In my lifetime I have seen success. Bill Gates is a lousy programmer but he was intelligent enough to become aware that thousands of common citizens (like me) were the answer to improving his DOS platform. He sent out beta versions and invited good programmers to submit content to be adapted to his platform. With ruthless determination he was exceptionally successful by acquiring content from the general public and rarely used his own. Mark Zuckerberg is a good programmer. He built an open platform with connectivity, providing a social service. He was so successful that for a decade he put all his effort into finding enough servers to handle the demand. He didn't post his own content but relied on the general public. Since then dozens of companies have followed this lead; Instagram, Linkedin, Twitter etc., and for the most part very successful. And then there are many commercial companies like Amazon and eBay that rely on the general public to post content. In contrast Governments tend to post their own content, in a top down process with questionable success.

Politics is the art of making law. The first activity when making something is to determine the ingredients needed to produce the product. As an example, the essential ingredient in making wine is fruit. The best wine is made using the essential ingredient of grapes. In politics the making of law requires the essential ingredient of a source of authority (ocracy, examples are autocracy, theocracy, plutocracy etc.). In western society we use democracy which can be divided into two broad categories: participatory and participative. Representative democracy salted with referendums, initiatives and recall is a form of participatory democracy. In a nutshell, we use democratic legitimacy to elect our governments, but use things like parliamentary legitimacy or the legitimacy of the crown in British jurisdictions and congressional, executive or judicial legitimacy in republics like the US. We all know that without democratic legitimacy we expose our laws to potential corruption, privilege and inefficiencies.

Participative democracy on the other hand uses democratic legitimacy not only to elect governments but also make law. The only nation that uses a type of participative democracy is Switzerland; the first nation to have an international aid organization (Red Cross), managed to maintain their sovereignty without conflict through two world wars, managed to corner the watch making and banking industry in the nineteenth and twentieth century, has the highest per-capita income in the world, managed to build the Large Hadron Collider, and all this in a mountainous land with no natural resources, with three distinct cultures and four official languages. How is this possible?

Simple, Switzerland uses its citizens as a source of authority to make law.

I won't bore you with another hundred pages of reasons, because you already know how important it is to use the amazing resource of humanity as a source of authority to make law. Instead I would like to explain how to find the political will to change. Firstly we don't need approval or permission from government at this time to be successful. Build it and they will come. There are hundreds of undiscovered ways to make law using consensus and thus democratic legitimacy from citizens. There is potential fame and fortune for first comers in this field.

I know of three synchronistic attempts from lay people, however without resources and credentials we may be waiting for a few more life times if it happens at all.

Participative democracy, www.politicalhappiness.com

David Ernst's Liquid democracy, https://united.vote,

Karel Kosman's Real Democracy, https://arealdemocracy.org.

The solution to the most important problem the world is facing today is enlightened academics who are not indoctrinated with nineteenth century political ideology. (Voting, what an out of date nineteenth century idea! Yuck.)What does voting mean to you? Do you feel you are being manipulated? Do you vote because you feel threatened? When was the last time you voted for something rather than a desperate need to get rid of bad government? Do you feel betrayed when half way through a mandate the guy with good hair does an about face and invests your money in a project to send dirty oil to a third world country where the oil can be processed unrestrained by environmental law. Is voting a popularity contest? Do you have enough information to vote for the best government? Does voting polarize society?

In the future citizens will be aware of their political equality and will control their own personal piece of political authority.

Scenario

Imagine political scientists from SFU or UBC or a group from the WOSK center become aware of; a need to find consensus from the body of citizens in jurisdictions, a crying need for a group of men and women who understand the art of politics and can engineer systems to find legitimacy in law through consensus without prejudice.

The faculty of political engineering begins with a half dozen students who have computer science, behavioral science, and history backgrounds. Recognizing the political will to make this counter-cultural shift will not come from government or people over thirty who have been indoctrinated with nineteenth century political ideas they endeavor to copy contemporary success scenarios.

Using history as a foundation they become aware that the most stable political system generating the best quality of life is an ocracy know as democracy. With the awareness that democracy can be divided into two broad categories; participatory and participative they decide to engineer a system using a form of participative democracy. Based on fundamental principles discovered from their historical research they engineer a platform that fulfills the principle where in a participative democracy each citizen controls exactly the same amount of political authority from the age of consent until the end of life. They use the moniker POPA (piece of political authority) to represent the ownership and responsibility each citizen possesses.

In the process they discover dozens of systems that would work but decide to concentrate on the one they think will work best because it doesn't involve government in any way. They call it Lead Democracy. The platform they build will provide a service. It can be loaded onto any device and will be known as the GOV app. To create an account a citizen need only provide a GPS location or their home address. A name would be nice but not necessary because the brilliant political engineers develop system-security based on biometrics, like finger print, iris scans or facial recognition giving each living citizen a unique signature with no connection to personal information. The service generated is a political account. Like a bank account when a citizen logs on they will find who is using their POPA on a municipal, provincial or state, federal and UN level. On each level of government they will be able to see all the politicians on the same level. On the provincial level in BC they will see a list of 87 members of the legislative assembly. Politicians can post what they like on the platform and citizens can see what they post by clicking on the politician's name. Citizens if they don't approve of who is using their POPA to make law can simply move their POPA to a politician on the same level. The system is based on overlaying electoral maps provided by governments all over the world, identifying which politician is representing the citizens in the jurisdiction and giving citizens control of who is using their political authority 24/7 365 days a year. With time citizens will become aware they possess POPA which will build a sense of ownership and responsibility and then a tidal wave of political will in the laws made by politicians. When a citizen moves their POPA they will receive details of their move on the service which they can forward to their selected politician or political party as a citizen auditing or scrutinizing process. Each piece of legislation passed by all levels of government will come with a number from the service known as (POC) percentage of consensus. With time POC will become more important in deciding which laws have been made with democratic legitimacy. Imagine the media questioning the legitimacy of a law passed with say only twelve percent consensus even though eighty percent of the politicians voted for it?

The political engineers also become aware of a need to drive out misinformation. Again, using history as a foundation they develop methods to control misinformation. By selecting ISSUES on the GOV app all citizens are given an opportunity to submit their needs or concerns with the knowledge that they will get their issue on the agenda more readily if many citizens submit the same issue or need. The engineers produce an agenda and schedule interactive events to be live streamed on the GOV app between 4 PM and 8 PM on week nights. For example: the opioid crisis is scheduled for Thursday. Eight groups, representing social workers, affected members of the public, paramedics, pharmacists, politicians, law enforcement, an aboriginal group and commercial drug manufacturers, come bearing ideas on how to end the crisis. Amazingly at the end of the first round the commercial drug manufacturers have the most support because they want all recreational drugs legalized and regulated. The engineers have designed a debate system where groups can amalgamate at the end of each of three sessions depending on their support. The number of groups goes to four on the second round and on the final round only two groups remain, one representing law enforcement and politicians and the six other groups joining with a recommendation to treat substance abuse as a health issue and that all old drug related laws made in the past using questionable legitimacy should be re-submitted to the rigors of the legislative assembly to measure democratic legitimacy with the hope that citizens will see fit to remove most of the responsibility government and law enforcement agencies now carry. Effectively leaders and specialist on both sides of the political spectrum have informed the citizens by exposing the problem and through a competitive struggle eliminated prejudice, shame and misunderstanding. After the enlightening open and free debate politicians from all political stripes join forces in an effort to draft legislation and solicit and gain support from citizens (an ongoing responsibility for politicians in a participative democracy).

With time problems with open and free debates surface because there is no penalty for misleading or obstructing. An open and free debate is scheduled to find solutions. This time a political engineering group wins by suggesting an ostracon system similar to the one used in ancient Greece where citizens found guilty would be restricted for a period of time from participating. Instead of incarceration, loss of status, shame and ostracism is used to control tyranny generated by the human condition of avarice and hubris. Over the years constant citizen approved changes build a dynamic law making mechanism.

OK, you can see holes and problems with this nonsense; however that is why we have engineers. The Port-Man Bridge is a beautiful thing that is effective and efficient at moving traffic over the Fraser River. Most academic disciplines have practical outlets that have embraced technology. Imagine mathematicians and physicists sitting back and recording how the wood bridge made by a bunch of good old boys floated away again with the spring flood because mathematicians and physicists, for whatever reason, refuse to have engineers (the present job of political scientists). Our universities have a lot to be proud of but when academia smiles there is a glaring missing tooth of engineering under political science.

Unexpected benefits of participative democracy will span the spectrum of all our lives. People working together to make the best law will build a body of noble citizens (decreasing need for law enforcement). Laws with teeth will slow the degradation of our environment. Laws to redistribute wealth will stabilize our economies. Vancouver will be a center of political engineering and with time the platform engineered here will be used over the entire planet to find consensus. The UN will use the distribution of POPA in their members to make strong international laws and resolve conflict. With strong international law, borders will dissolve into welcome centers with signs asking visitors to respect and enhance the culture they find putting the onus on the visitor not the occupant of the country they are traveling in. For the first time in history women, because of their numbers and diligence, will be the source of authority to make law. Population growth will stabilize, as it has in women of European origin after they became aware of their political franchise through early twentieth century suffrage.

In conclusion political will is all around us. Today there is one thing that is consistent; the frustration, resignation and downright anger at government. The solution is to engineer a GOV app that will channel this negative energy into positive growth and political happiness.

A huge job but the journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.

If you read this thanks. I hope I can find someone to follow into theAge of Awareness. I only have perhaps another decade and it would be nice to see a beginning in my life t

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Several hundred books with political subject matter have been published in 2017. I have been searching for someone to follow who has a solution to the incredible political unhappiness I see in every niche of our planet. All I find is a diatribe describing forceful and bitter attacks against individual corruption and political stupidity. It seems no...

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