Original Posting: New Political System for the Information Age Draft #05
In reponse to Re: How is the Committee of Lay People appointed? - [Bernard Clayson]
Email: Thu, 8 Jul 2004 22:34:21 -0700
Re(2): How is the Committee of Lay People appointed?
Monday, 12 July 2004 19:20 Singapore
“Yes, don't forget their function is not to decide anything, it is to present the publics comments in a formulated way for the people to decide.”
“How is the Committee of Lay People appointed?”
“It could be by volunteers, rota, or sortition.”
The following terms have these meanings?:
"rota" = "a roster of names showing the order in which people should perform certain duties"
"sortition" = "making a chance decision by using lots (straws or pebbles etc.) that are thrown or drawn"
Are the members of the Committee of Lay people appointed from a pre-selected, -appointed or -elected group of citizens? Are only citizens eligible for appointment to this pre-selected group of people? Or are "foreign talents" eligible for appointment too?
How many members does the Committee have? How many members does the pre-selected group have?
“Precisely, who appoint them and under what authority? .....”
“The public 'appoint' them, what higher authority is needed.”
“..... How many of these committees could be appointed at the same time for the same or different issue?
“In reality, one committee for each level should be adiquate, if more were needed additional people could be found.
I would not anticipate more than one issue being dealt with at any one time due to pushing public involvement too far, the duration of the committees work would not be too long (3-4 evenings at the most) depending on the number of comments/questions received.”
“I have taken a different line on this, democracy is government of the people, by the people, so the public have a committee that investigate public comments to present them as a 'for' and 'against' so the people can then judge on all opions. (more detail if you want it).”
“Yes, I would like to have more details before I comment on your idea here.”
- Enlist members of the public to serve on a committee to present proposals in a 'for' and 'against' format using:a. interested professional (or retired professional) people to act as specialist advisory panels to quantify elements of public proposals.
- present their findings to the public with;a. alternative solutions
b. suggestions on what controls need to be set, and;
c. set revision time limits on the proposed project
- open the discussion to public commentsa. comments 'for' and 'against' should be submitted on a separate papers
- Documents to be presented as:a. proposal detail
b. advantages and potential consequences
c. reassessment period
d. potential costs involved
- public to vote on final document/s.”
“Moreover, from the 5 terms of reference you have stated earlier on (see above), the average lay person would have difficulties to discharge their duties and like the some of jury, it would frequently end up with the 'interested professional' making his 'recommendations' and have them rubber-stamped by the rest of the committee.
“The committees would not make decisions, their function is to formulate public responces and quiries for the public to make the decision.”
“The function of the 'professional' people is to answer/advise on public inititiated questions, again, they can't decide anything.
Examples -1. How much will it cost?The professionals would know who/where to find comparable costings.”
2. What will it cost the ratepayer?
Deciding on how much it costs and how much it will cost the taxpayers are very important decisions too that would have great bearing on the outcome of the people's voting.
The decisions on whom and where to find comparable costings are similarly very crucial decisions that would ultimately affect the people's perception of the issue and the way the people would vote.
“They can only vote on the power of the constituencies opinion (unless they have delegated powers) even then those decisions are logged for the public to judge by, on top of that, every representative (right up to the Prime Minister) can be repremanded/withdrawn by the community that proposed him/her. Move locality and they have to start again (reminder of their origins).
Every individual in the system has a deputy i.e. continuous government.”
“Isn’t this precisely the problem? To remain in office or to be re-elected, the Prime Minister must serve his constituents ‘well’ with special benefits and privileges at the expense of the rest of the citizens. This is one crucial reason why Prime Ministers are often elected with large electoral majority.
A Prime Minister’s constituent is in the position to tell the civil servant handling his case that he wants satisfaction from the civil servant failing which he would see the Prime Minister on Monday (or whatever day it is) morning/evening at the meet-the–people-session. This would be scandalous in the NPS.”
“You are overlooking the hierarchy the PM has to climb through to get to that position, he/she has to be elected by his/her peers of that level in order to achieve the next level, and as it would be impossible to serve on all levels (from community, parish, district, county, region, government AND be PM), the obligation to serve on more than three is automatically removed ........... but the qualifying status remains.
Hence any attempt to favour ANY sector would automatically find disfavour with the other sectors, and the PM (and MP's) can only act on their constituents vote.”
“Are “his/her peers” fellow MPs or party members whose endorsement for election or political career depends on or benefits from the political party controlled by the PM and his political success? ”
“The 'peers' are the people at the same level, only they know the individuals well enough to decide who is capable of representing them at the higher level, and please note, there are no 'parties' as such in the system.
Each individual is a community chosen person, not a party chosen person, each one has to answer to, and is held reponsible to, the community that chose them.”
“Excellent! We have a very substantial agreement here. Your NPS also envisages a ‘no party’ system.
However, I still remain unconvinced on one important point. The PM would, in some ways, have to favour or give preferential treatment to the community that ‘choses’ or elect him for the office over the rest of the citizens, if he wants to remain in office or to be re-elected as contrasted to a nationally, directly elected President who would not have such a problem.”
“The PM is 'chosen' all the way up the hierachy, if the PM did try to benefit his community in any way he would dis-enfranchise the support of other members all the way up the ladder, I think that would guarantee more troulble than the effort would gain in the process.”However, this still cannot sufficiently mitigate the fact that in your system the PM can be repremanded/withdrawn by the community that proposed him. What is the use of having the support of his peers or anyone else in the hierachy, if his basic community withdraws its support from him. He would still lose his seat in Parliament and his PM office.
Yes, it is true, in such a situation, he would end up 'bribing' many people other than his basic community. So there is a pressing need for him to garner through his government lots of resources from the people in general. This is potentially a very unhealthy situation.
“If you look at 'directly elected President's, who actually knows them before they are elected.This is precisely why many people including us do not endorse the US Presidential System. This is precisely why there is a crying need for a NPS.
The current saga with the USA Presdential election is a good example, leaving out the party politics for a moment, who actually can make an unbiased recommendation of Kerry.
Both he and Bush went to the same university, both members of the same, or similar clubs, both invited to attend the Bilderburger meetings at some point, as has Edwards (Kerry's running mate).
Currently, they are elected as the candidate to stand for President by the party they belong to, as being the best person to represent them.”
“My suggestion is the community choses the best person, the 'community' is extended each time they are elevated up the hirearchy until the 'community' is the country in the case of the PM.If this is the case, then we are substantially in full agreement on by whom the national leader is to be elected. In the your NPS, the PM is directly elected by all the people in the country, whom you prefer to call them as the PM's 'community', whereas, in the New Political System for the Information Age, the President is also directly elected by all the people called the 'people'. In essence what you call the PM, I call the President.
So who is he/she going to 'bribe' to keep the position of PM.”
“This is one of the reasons I promote public-run systems, official-run systems all favour party promotion because party-people can-be/are manipulated, individuals are bucking a stacked-deck when it comes to competing for office at any level.”
“Yes, I agree fully with you here. This is the inherent evil of the party-based politcal systems. In a ‘no party’ political system, there is no party for promotion by the official. On the other hand, if the system is in fact run by a political party, then the system is not a genuinely ‘no party’ system..”
“One also has to be aware of the party deviations, Proportional Representation is a good example, it is nothing more than a means of maintaining party principles under the guise of more democractic.........”
Back to top