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Hacking democracy: a simple, legal way to put the power in the hands of the people

Literally all the problems in the way we're governed right now are due to the people with decision making power being disconnected from their constituents. No one except those running the military industrial complex want our tax dollars to fund endless war. No one except the bankers want our tax dollars to bail them out.

Occupy wall street, anonymous hacking government emails, peaceful protestors yelling at passerbys on weekends, hundreds of thousands of people signing online petitions, anarchists dropping out of college to go live in the woods, these techniques have not proven at all effective in fixing the broken system. No one seems to want to get to the root of the problem, the power structure itself.

I propose an online direct democracy system that any registered voter can use (not only members of a particular political party) that would allow every citizen in a community to propose, edit, upvote, comment, and vote on legislation that impacts their community. But this system is toothless without the hacking democracy part of my plan.

A person (not a politician) runs for office under the platform that he will exclusively use this decentralized decision making process to make decisions. Imagine that instead of his own brain deciding whether or not to pass legislation, he agrees to submit to the whims of the people. He will still be proposing legislation through this system, but now everyone can. If he has good ideas, the citizens will vote for his legislation. If he doesn't, he can just execute the legislation his constituents come up with.

I have a million bulletproof counter-arguments for any criticism of direct democracy & I have the time to explain them to you, but the most important idea you need to consider is this: we need to incrementally improve the system. No one is going to come up with a plan tomorrow that fixes all of society's problems and instantaneous paradigm shifts aren't practical.

Check out my site: http://hackingdemocracy.wordpress.com

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  • Feb 27 2013: Austin - how does DDD account for issues/policies relating to defense? Especially if much of the applicable information is classified? Thanks for your thoughts...
    • Feb 27 2013: Another reasonable concern.

      Certain organizations (such as the military or CIA) definitely do benefit from rigid hierarchy and secrecy. The DDD system would be used to appoint qualified individuals to positions of power in the military system, as politicians do today. Once appointed, these officials would have autonomy to implement their defense plans, or even hire new people as needed. There would actually be more accountability because with hacking democracy the masses would not only be funding a general's paycheck via taxes, but have the ability to fire him if he fucks up. How would fuck ups be revealed to the public? The same way they are now: leaked documents. These military leaders rarely voluntarily disclose evidence of failure; why would they? We unfortunately would need to continue relying on whistleblowers as we do now.

      Additionally, more and more these days the US government is already hiring private military contractors or mercenaries. Society could use the DDD system to pool their money together in order to hire these mercenaries for defense, eventually eliminating a military force that's intertwined with government. I believe this is the source of a lot of the problems with the military-industrial complex. They could even do the same thing for tax-payer funded police and private security forces.

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