StringJunky

How to stop ruling party corrupting election machinery?

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Is there a way or process to stop incumbent  governments hijacking the election process and legal system in their favour for future elections?

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Unfortunately, I believe the only option here is civil unrest or potentially uprising. Beyond that, the machinery you need is controlled by the very people you seek to expel. 

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Posted (edited)

Get rid of indirect democracy and replace it by direct democracy 2) i.e. voting by Internet, using mobile phones, computers, etc. in the all needed law changes 1)... ?

 

1) "sometimes"/"all the time", I am getting impression that politicians change law, just to pretend they do something, to pretend they are not completely useless. i.e. change to have any change, regardless whether it is good or bad, to have info for voters what they did in the past years. Change not to fix the real problems, not to advance. i.e. when law is almost perfect, covering almost everything, there is needed very little change, so quantity of voting per year should be quite low (thus not disrupting everybody's life)

 

2) there is needed very smart and intelligent society to have direct democracy. e.g. in not so bright society, somebody could came with an idea "let's give everybody 1m". Who don't want to have 1m? ;) obviously everybody would vote "yea!". The next day after release of 1m to everybody, prices in the all shops would jump accordingly to larger amount of money on the market..

Edited by Sensei

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26 minutes ago, Sensei said:

Get rid of indirect democracy and replace it by direct democracy 2) i.e. voting by Internet, using mobile phones, computers, etc. in the all needed law changes 1)... ?

 

1) "sometimes"/"all the time", I am getting impression that politicians change law, just to pretend they do something, to pretend they are not completely useless. i.e. change to have any change, regardless whether it is good or bad, to have info for voters what they did in the past years. Change not to fix the real problems, not to advance. i.e. when law is almost perfect, covering almost everything, there is needed very little change, so quantity of voting per year should be quite low (thus not disrupting everybody's life)

 

2) there is needed very smart and intelligent society to have direct democracy. e.g. in not so bright society, somebody could came with an idea "let's give everybody 1m". Who don't want to have 1m? ;) obviously everybody would vote "yea!". The next day after release of 1m to everybody, prices in the all shops would jump accordingly to larger amount of money on the market..

The founding fathers tried, and tried again, but ever since an amendment seems to be a foreign policy. 

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39 minutes ago, iNow said:

Unfortunately, I believe the only option here is civil unrest or potentially uprising. Beyond that, the machinery you need is controlled by the very people you seek to expel. 

Yes, that's the present reality. I'm hoping for a hypothetical discussion in possible new principles and separation of powers.

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It's been proposed (2004) in the US to have the UN observe and certify our presidential elections. 

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5 minutes ago, Phi for All said:

It's been proposed (2004) in the US to have the UN observe and certify our presidential elections.  

...hilariously, it is now needed more than ever before.. to detect mass remotely controlled Internet trolls trying to influence people's weak minds... Which is trivial easy in US (black & white, with centuries of history of violence, migration, with alleged "taking American's job" subtext, which is not true, as majority of emigrants don't know English, don't have required competences and certificates, so can take the least paid jobs, no American wants to take by himself or herself)..

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1 minute ago, Sensei said:

...hilariously, it is now needed more than ever before.. to detect mass remotely controlled Internet trolls trying to influence people's weak minds... Which is trivial easy in US (black & white, with centuries of history of violence, migration, with alleged "taking American's job" subtext, which is not true, as majority of emigrants don't know English, don't have required competences and certificates, so can take the least paid jobs, no American wants to take by himself or herself)..

The administration/party that openly hates foreigners right now would hardly support letting foreigners monitor our elections. 

How do you open internet voting when imposing the necessary security on the internet falls right into the hands of those who want to control and abuse it?

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8 hours ago, StringJunky said:

Is there a way or process to stop incumbent  governments hijacking the election process and legal system in their favour for future elections?

This is a very good question - it is a real and serious concern that I (and I suppose, much better intellects than mine) have struggled to see solutions to.

It may be that we (in "free democracies") never really have had independent courts or free and fair elections - but even the Highest judges and courts maintaining appearances of acting without fear or favour and the power of overwhelming majorities to vote out the appallingly bad (without resort to violent revolution) does moderate the very worst. It has to be very bad for revolution to look like a good thing - with far more likelihood of making things worse, including by overturning independence of courts; people who gain power by force rarely allow it to be taken away by courts.

9 hours ago, Sensei said:

Get rid of indirect democracy and replace it by direct democracy

Sensei, I am not a fan of direct democracy, mostly due to your reason 2.  I don't think mobs are intelligent and informed enough to do the jobs that good governance requires; the more people you put together the more simplistic the messaging gets - and, in practice, becomes more about pressing people's buttons to get reactions and less about engaging them with information and reason. I think good governance does require expertise - simply doing what people (unthinkingly) think they want, when what they want is highly dependent on the quality of messaging they are exposed to is not a good model. Looks to me like being deliberately baited with issues and examples that get reactions, not thoughtfulness are the rule in political messaging rather than the exception. Some kinds of requirements for Policymaking to engage more closely with Independent Expertise and limit power to simply ignore it comes to mind - our (sort of) independent institutions of science and learning are, like (sort of) independent courts of law are, I think, profoundly important institutions.

 

I do think journalism and Mainstream News Media - that other important institutional element at work in democratic societies - are a pivot point with potential for making this problem of powerful incumbents shaping the rules better or worse. I'm not convinced the US model where freedom of "the press" is the freedom of press owners to pursue partisan political agendas, with little requirement for accuracy or truth, is a good one.  (Who was it that predicted media organisations would one day replace political parties? It looks like some of these already ARE powerful incumbents that seek to reinforce their own power and privilege).

Mostly the very business model media is built on - paid messaging intended to get people to buy stuff (and believe stuff and make voting choices) they otherwise wouldn't - looks too amoral to be a good foundation for democracy to rely on. But are elected political leaders even capable of regulating organisations with the power to turn elections? I'm doubtful.

Even so I think that the regulating of media offers the greatest potential for putting roadblocks in the way of institutional corruption - and I think the greatest challenges to good governance are various forms of institutional corruption. Preventing corruption is more intrinsically important in my view than where governments and leaders and political parties and policies sit on any Left vs Right spectrum; the worst excesses of Capitalism as well as Socialism are, I think, more the consequences of corruption than ideology.

 

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