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Post Reply What's the best system of government?
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30 / F / New Orleans, LA USA
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Posted 10/23/14
I'm an American and my feelings about politics (and by extension government) border on hate. Too often politicians do or say things solely to denigrate the opposition. They don't even try to see another view outside their own, because they are so certain that what they think is best for all. Politics doesn't concern itself with truth, but perception. Also there are so many members of the government that they must also concern themselves with power. Which leads to corruption. And the good of the people gets lost in the shuffle.

All this has recently made me wish we lived in a dictatorship. Yes, I know there's that problem of what if the dictator in question is a bad one. So I modified it to a triumvirate. Three people with equal power that make the decisions and the laws. Three can't be deadlocked and it also means you get differing viewpoints. Fleshing it out in my head I went with 6 year terms on a rotating basis with the current members of the triumvirate choosing the next member. I hadn't decided about whether I felt that past members should be allowed to be reelected. (Maybe after a period out of office?) This is when I pretty much wanted to see what other people thought.

What do you think of my proposed system of government? Do you have one that you think would work better?
Posted 10/23/14 , edited 10/23/14
perception itself comes with strings.

v it's not about dictatorship working, she wants people to be more honest with her i recon. not gonna happen matey :p
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21 / M / Canada
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Posted 10/23/14
I don't see how that would work. Most dictators have never actually acted alone when running a government. In fact my history teacher often said their were other powers at work behind the scenes, and most of the time, the dictator leaned towards what they wanted before making decisions himself. Having three dictators would make no difference. Dictatorship is a failed way of governing society, it could never work, especially in a capitalist economy where the richest company could influence the choices of the ruling dictatorship simply by the abundant power gained from extreme wealth.

The only way dictatorship could work is if the person in charge was a truly heartfelt good and honest individual. But since perfect humans don't exist, eventually even the nicest man will kneel before abundant wealth and power. That's my point of view.
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34 / F / California
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Posted 10/23/14 , edited 2/7/15
Supreme executive power derives from a mandate from the masses, not from some farcical aquatic ceremony!

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Posted 10/23/14
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It doesn't matter.
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Posted 10/23/14
Anarchy followed by communism.
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40 / M / End of Nowhere
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Posted 10/23/14 , edited 2/7/15

Bri0518 wrote:

I'm an American and my feelings about politics (and by extension government) border on hate. Too often politicians do or say things solely to denigrate the opposition. They don't even try to see another view outside their own, because they are so certain that what they think is best for all. Politics doesn't concern itself with truth, but perception. Also there are so many members of the government that they must also concern themselves with power. Which leads to corruption. And the good of the people gets lost in the shuffle.

All this has recently made me wish we lived in a dictatorship. Yes, I know there's that problem of what if the dictator in question is a bad one. So I modified it to a triumvirate. Three people with equal power that make the decisions and the laws. Three can't be deadlocked and it also means you get differing viewpoints. Fleshing it out in my head I went with 6 year terms on a rotating basis with the current members of the triumvirate choosing the next member. I hadn't decided about whether I felt that past members should be allowed to be reelected. (Maybe after a period out of office?) This is when I pretty much wanted to see what other people thought.

What do you think of my proposed system of government? Do you have one that you think would work better?


There is no best system of government. There is only what works for a given group of people. A lot of Russians think the world of Putin, just like a lot of people in North Korea think the world of the Kim family. Many of them just happen to also be in the military.

And a triumvirate can deadlock as well. Most decisions are not so black and white that one can just say "yes" or "no" to. Even within the Supreme Court and 9 justices, you can sometimes get as many as 5 different opinions. Sometimes more, it is just that the majority opinion is generally a single viewpoint, but the 5 or more justices themselves might have different views of the same thing too.

The problem that most people have is that truth itself is subjective. Not the truth that 1 plus 1 equals 2, but there are many truths when it comes to government. Just look at guns. Sure most liberals would like to get rid of them entirely, but the fact is that this is not going to happen. The second amendment allows for guns, you cannot edit that out. You can constrain and control them, but you cannot get rid of them. Yet the "truth" about who is saying or believes or is trying to pass what about guns is massively convoluted. And while there may be some outright falsehoods, many are just the same thing seen from different points of view.

Perception is politics. A lot of people think President Obama goofs off on vacation a lot because he goes back to Hawaii for Christmas, and more importantly, New Years. And there is a perception by a lot of people that Bush worked a lot while at Crawford. The reality is that in both cases both presidents worked while they were at their vacation residence. But people perceive Bush as working more because he is in Texas, whereas Obama is in Hawaii and people have a hard time perceiving Hawaii as anything other than a tropical paradise. The fact that Hawaii is as home to Obama as Texas is to Bush is irrelevant to that perception. The fact that both Bush and Obama get the same work done at Crawford and Kailua is not something that is perceived by many people because to them it is Texas vs Hawaii. There is nothing to do in Texas but work, but in Hawaii you are supposed to be on vacation so you can not be doing work. Perception vs truth.

The US system actually works very nicely, and is remarkably well thought out for a government. Because, unlike almost every other government out there, it is difficult for a single group to gain control of the whole shebang. And even when they do, they still have to deal with an entrenched bureaucracy which is itself a 4th branch of the government. The US Federal government was never really meant to work that well to begin with. After all, strong state rights were what the Southern States wanted versus a stronger Federal Government which is what the Northern States wanted. So we got a compromise of a weaker Federal system that still could do what it needed to do. A president who is elected regardless of what party controls the Congress is almost silly in a way. Since if it is an opposition party it makes it difficult for the President to do anything and yet the populace thinks he can. On the flip side an opposition Congress can be split in half and even if it is not if the opposition party to the President is in power in Congress it can make passing legislature difficult due to Presidential Veto. Both sides need to compromise with the other to a degree to get anything done. Further more neither side really has control over the Supreme Court whose justices may have been appointed 20 years before and should therefore be relatively free from the politics of the moment. All three branches and the regular bureaucracy all have to work together and compromise together to get anything done.

The US system is not built on political parties, this is something most people and even Americans do not realize. Because by and large the state systems are built on parties. And most other countries are built on parties. But the US Federal system is built on individuals and compromise. Individuals from separate parties getting together and each gives up some of their platform to gain a little bit and eventually a compromise is supposed to be hammered out. The US system is supposed to be one of compromise and not parties. It is just that people perceive it as parties that makes it so. And, admittedly, it is to a degree but that is mostly because the Republican party has lost control of a sizable minority. They no longer have the ability to compromise with the opposition, so less seems like it gets done. But it has always been about a few individuals putting the greater good above themselves in some cases. They just often do not get a lot of recognition for it.

But again, all of it is built not upon truth and never has been. It is all built on perception because politics is perception.

And corruption does not come from power necessarily. The key with corruption is when people put their own welfare above those that they were meant to serve. It is not simply a question of power. Many people without power are corrupt because of their beliefs.

As for politicians who cannot see beyond themselves, well, that is the fault of the constituents who continue to vote them in. Seriously, if you have an issue with it, stand for office yourself. Go out there and create a groundswell of support for you and challenge the incumbents. When you get right down to it, that is exactly what the Tea Party did, and they did succeed. I would argue their very success is what will destroy the Republican Party, but whatever can be said about most Tea Party members, they do tend to be what they say. Most truly believe that what they are doing is for the best of the country. That it might not be, that they only see themselves and not others, is irrelevant to the fact that they do believe. And in some ways, that may make them the most honest people in Washington.
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Posted 10/24/14 , edited 11/23/14
Proponents of dictatorship have a historical record to look back to and call upon to support their cause. They might point to the relative economic and cultural prosperity of Athens under the tyranny of Peisistratos, or the successful modernization and industrialization of the USSR under the Stalinists' oversight, or the improvement of standards of living in Argentina under the Peronists, or even the relative prosperity experienced by some country under whoever their favorite absolute monarch is. Indeed, there is a plentiful buffet of accomplished dictatorships to choose from.

Of course, as the proponents of dictatorship take from this buffet they (like any other buffet goer) leave behind the wilted leaves of lettuce, the softened tomatoes, and the off-smelling meats. They will quietly avoid the fact that Peisistratos was driven from the city of Athens on two separate occasions, the purging, slavery, forced expatriation, and genocide (both cultural and physical) in Stalin's USSR, the brutal street violence and thuggery of the Peronists, or the fact that successors of influential monarchs and tyrants, however well-groomed and thoroughly taught, were just as likely to possess a talent for fornication and revelry which by comparison diminished their talent for governance to an imperceptible speck. Awful tasting stuff indeed.

The difference between the buffet of liberal democracies and the buffet of dictatorships, dear friends, is that the buffet of dictators has a far greater amount of wilted lettuce, softened tomatoes, and off-smelling meats than tempting morsels by comparison. Dictatorship is plagued with instability, with violence, with corruption, and all to a greater historical extent than liberal democracy. Dictatorship may from time to time produce fruit (and how loudly its proponents will announce that it has done so), but from a bird's eye view the pattern becomes plain: dictatorships are inferior to liberal democracies in that they produce fruit less consistently, and more generally through repugnant means.
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21 / F / Los Angeles
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Posted 10/24/14 , edited 10/24/14
Not sure what type of government would be the best, but seeing as some people view the US system working well, I'll have to disagree.

My family came to the US solely to escape the Soviet Union. If they could go back in time and decide to make that decision all over again, they would stay in Russia. People were more prone to respect each other, kids had no reason to shoot up the schools, and it was rare that someone had a 60K+ salary more than you did even if you contained the same degree. It's all connections and/or insane debt in this country. People think the Soviet Union was oppressing times for Russia, but compared to the US today? Hilarious.
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31 / M / Minnesota, USA
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Posted 10/24/14
Moderate Socialism would be a great idea...if it actually worked. Unfortunately in the world we live in people don't share that well. I think the only really viable one is some version of Democracy.
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Posted 10/24/14

masked185 wrote:

Moderate Socialism would be a great idea...if it actually worked. Unfortunately in the world we live in people don't share that well. I think the only really viable one is some version of Democracy.


I will preface this by saying I am a registered Independent. I have never lived anywhere but the US, and I have lived in two bread-basket Midwestern states.

From what I can tell, politics are policies driven by the interests of those represented, and I'm not sure any party in the US produces candidates that have no damning interest in keeping the party in power.

There seems to be a backwards idea in America that we should keep the larger union and go to a smaller system of government. I yearn for the opposite. Since the United States is more of a republic than a full democracy, the citizens are locked into a small pool of choices for broad decisions. I can side with Democrats on social service reform, Republicans on personal liberty, and Libertarians on state government in favor of federal government. But unfortunately, with all these parties that is about as far as I can agree.

These parties decide which candidates we may choose from and drive which issues get conversation. It's not the reality of America in these discussions, it's the talking points of broad parties with agendas that serve to make their party the most popular.

The following statement is out of context and only intended to drive my own points.


Bri0518 wrote:

All this has recently made me wish we lived in a dictatorship.



So some sort of democracy is important. But the democratic republic we have is insanely polarizing. Like sports, you have to pick a team, and the team picks its own players. It's like having three competing dictatorships who all want the chance to shift the policy to put the score in their favor. They all have their own scummy tactics that benefit the party over all else, and they are all very good at pretending it is not scummy.

MY SOLUTIONS!
Popular vote creates a truer democracy. I mean, the idea of an electoral college makes sense when everything had to travel by horse, but it's 2014. We can count votes individually, I do not think citizens of a state need to decide which of two people votes for the President.

Any donation of money to a political campaign should be recorded and made public. It's not like a charity, this money is being used to help a candidate gain a seat of broad power. One should not have the ability to contribute to this process without accepting accountability.

The idea of transparency in government, which must be a good idea nobody can win a campaign on the platform of secrecy, has to be regulated by a non-partisan agency that keeps its records publicly available. For this, I like the idea of a judicial system like the supreme court, but larger and more specified for oversight, where the people who have the seats of power have equal power and a job that does not fit into the executive or legislative branches, and their decisions are not secret.

The fewer people this entire system has to represent, the easier it is to perform it with the interest of all the people it represents.
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28 / M / Nova Scotia
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Posted 10/24/14
Humanist Technocracy.
Put a computer in charge, base all policy on raw data, randomly select a court of anonymous citizens from every district to evaluate the effect of that policy on a case-by-case basis.
Admittedly, it's an incomplete idea, but there would be no politicians, a minimal bureaucracy, and virtually no corruption.
Posted 10/25/14 , edited 10/25/14

morechunch wrote:


Any donation of money to a political campaign should be recorded and made public. It's not like a charity, this money is being used to help a candidate gain a seat of broad power. One should not have the ability to contribute to this process without accepting accountability.

The idea of transparency in government, which must be a good idea nobody can win a campaign on the platform of secrecy, has to be regulated by a non-partisan agency that keeps its records publicly available. For this, I like the idea of a judicial system like the supreme court, but larger and more specified for oversight, where the people who have the seats of power have equal power and a job that does not fit into the executive or legislative branches, and their decisions are not secret.

The fewer people this entire system has to represent, the easier it is to perform it with the interest of all the people it represents.


hmm...you don't remove barriers by introducing more.
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26 / M / Pandemonium
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Posted 10/25/14 , edited 10/25/14


Would you mind elaborating on this? I'm curious as to why you think that.


masked185 wrote:

Moderate Socialism would be a great idea...if it actually worked. Unfortunately in the world we live in people don't share that well. I think the only really viable one is some version of Democracy.


That's pretty much what Scandinavia has, though. Socialistic capitalism.
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It doesn't matter.
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Posted 10/25/14

Syndicaidramon wrote:



Would you mind elaborating on this? I'm curious as to why you think that.


Anarchy is when there are no rules so there is total equality without status and it allows everyone to be in charge of their own domain.
Anarchy has been successful in the wild so it should be successful with humans, too.
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