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Dale Retter


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Present democracy is like a verdict by a mob that does not attend a trial. Tribunocracy is a better way.

The single thing the world most needs now is better government. Our present system of mass public elections selecting government leaders and voting on referendum is equivalent to verdicts rendered by jurors that do not attend a trial. Better government requires a better system.

There is growing dissatisfaction with our election process, the role of money, and the ineffective government it produces Nevertheless reverence for the present form of democracy has largely precluded consideration of modifications substantial enough to significantly improve its substance. Tribunocracy is such a modification.

Tribunocracy utilizes Tribunes randomly selected from all the willing eligible potential voters. Like jurors in a court trial the selected Tribunes attend a public trial-like Tribunal Convention before voting. The majority vote of the Tribunes is a proxy for the majority vote of the entire pool of eligible voters. Tribunes serve only briefly, are dismissed after voting and retain no special power.

Tribunocracy reduces the role of money and shallow campaigning.

All Tribunes attend a public trial-like Tribunal Convention, before they vote. Like jurors in a trial, Tribunes are exposed directly to the candidates and testifying parties for hours, over a period of days. Thus it greatly reduces the need and value of paid advertising, and shallow slogan based campaign rhetoric. Dishonest claims, incorrect facts, and shallow arguments will be much less common; because the opposition will have adequate time and opportunity to dispute them by presenting better more persuasive evidence and arguments during the Tribunal Convention.

A quick dramatic change to Tribunocracy is not possible. However its gradual adoption is. Tribunocracy should and will first be introduced and tested in small special limited non-threatening non critical situations. For example, Tribunal Conventions might initially select officials not now elected such as city managers, or judges


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    Dec 18 2012: Based on the comments I have received, it is clear that I invited the misconception that Tribunocracy is intended to change more than our present system of mass public voting. It is not.

    Tribunes do not vote on legislation! Tribunocracy is only a system for improving the existing election process. Tribunocracy does not require or advocate other changes in government.
    • Dec 20 2012: "Tribunocracy reduces the role of money and shallow campaigning."

      Except it doesn't do this because corporations have a monopoly on media, so you get things like fox news and pro market, pro corporate ideology and anyone elses thoughts dismissed as "radicals", or "people not to be taken seriously".
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        Dec 20 2012: At present many parties especially those who have money or can earn money by gathering an audience advocate for their particular beliefs or personal best interests. Part of this, especially its funding is motivated because they believe it will affect voters and thereby help get the candidates they favor elected. Tribunocracy reduces this because the influence of what is said before a Tribunal Convention begins will be much less. This is because much more of each Tribune’s decision will be based on what they see and hear over the hours or days they spend listening to the candidates in person, and the witnesses they present at the public presentations. This information will be better because it will be in much grater depth, given under oath, and subject to cross examination and rebuttal. Tribunes will be instructed to give priority to information presented during the Tribunal Convention. Just as jurors are instructed to base their verdict only on the information they obtain from witnessing the trial. This will not eliminate the biases or affect of everything Tribunes are exposed to before the Tribunal Convention begins, but it will greatly reduce it.

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