I think attorneys are elected more than carpenters because they speak well and provide good arguments on either side of the question, and there lies the rub. They speak with a forked tongue. They have to think of the financial impact of their decisions on their election or re-election. We need people of conviction and principal and of varied economic backgrounds, and of both genders, and religious diversity, and ethnic representation, and the only way to achieve this goal is to eliminate the problem of raising money and being influenced by lobbyist is to have elections by lottery. Just by the odds you would have half men and half women, an ethnic balance, a religious balance and a balance between the wealthy and poor. You would easily have a better representation of America. Better decisions would be made because the interest of Americans would be represented and not the interest of corporations. No wonder our country has been in so many wars, these idiots just try and out testosterone each other.
Is Lottery an Option?
I know you think that by having a lottery that you’re going to have a lot of stupid people in Congress. How does that differ from today? I have just as much respect for a carpenter as I do for an attorney, and to tell the truth I would much rather have a carpenter following me on a narrow cliff than an attorney. Attorneys don’t have innate problem solving abilities, and so they have a hard time solving problems. Problem solving is certainly one of the most important qualities a public servant needs to be an effective leader.
Mechanics have innate problem solving abilities as do carpenters, teachers housewives, firemen, policemen, architects, machinist, inventors, laborers. Essentially anyone that’s not an attorney. We need term limits. There isn’t any reason we need professional politicians. If you haven’t accomplished your goals in the eight or maybe twelve years in office then to bad. It’s time to move on and let someone else bring in fresh ideas. We have more solutions than we have problems, but asking a group of narrow minded, principal bereft ego maniacs to make proper decisions to move our country forward is asking too much. Our politicians fight and bicker and represent their own interest and not ours. They represent but they don’t walk the walk. I want people in office who know what it is to live day to day, or have been victims of prejudice, or have had an inadequate education or lived in a violent neighborhood. We need people of all faiths, colors and backgrounds and occupations to truly represent America. Our system has been breached, not that it has ever been different, but there is a systemic problem with revolving doors from corporations to government and back again and again. We have the best and brightest running our country right into the ground. We have to evolve to a more just society. WE ARE A SOCIAL ORDER. We all depend on each other, no one achieves success on his or her own. If you think you’ve made it all on your own—you’re wrong.
It’s taken millions of years and millions of people to allow you–you rich folks—to be in the position your in. Anyone who thinks he’s more important in society than everyone else is living an illusion. Some of the best people I have known have been exceptionally average, but very happy and content to do an honest days work to feed and educate and cloth their family. Pride in what you do has little to do with how much money you make. There should be humility in success not arrogance.
While I’m thinking of it, our judicial system, the jury, is totally based on the lottery system. We bring twelve people together, from different economic backgrounds, different ethnic groups, ages and religions and have confidence that between these twelve people there will be justice served. If we have this much confidence in a lottery for our judicial system surely this idea can apply to the representatives in our representative government.
To ask candidates to only spend a limited amount of money, even publicly provided, and to enforce this idea amongst themselves is asking a bit too much. I don’t believe that they have the moral compass to see that money should not be the criteria for elected office. They, the politicians, gravitate to where the money is, that’s how they get elected and re-elected. I’ve heard the expression that we’re all whores we just have to determine the price. Politicians make whores look good, at least whores can refuse service for money.Politicians never seem to say no.
So, the conclusion I have drawn here is that the lottery system for our elected representatives is the best way to have our officials elected. I have more faith in the collective conscience to make decisions about OUR well being than a group of isolated self motivated hypocrites that say exactly what you want to here and then go about their business insuring that whatever they do, it will benefit their election.
The Basics of Sortition
And now, the best for last… Apparently back in Athens Greece Aristotle came up with the idea that used a form of government that involved a lottery system to elect their government officials. They used a lottery system to govern because it better represented the publics interest and it eliminated the domination of politics by the power brokers. This gives validity to the idea of a lottery to elect our government officials in that the Greeks used this concept for hundreds of years in the most successful democracy the world has ever known, and this lottery idea has been used in many cultures throughout history.
Our Democratic system is broken and it cannot be fixed. The problems are systemic. If you can’t solve a problem, eliminate it. I think this idea of electing our government representatives by lottery is a viable solution to most of our political problems. This concept is called SORTITION-which means-selection by lot. Nothing new under the sun I guess. The advantages of this system of election by lottery are numerous and the more you think about it the more a lottery makes sense.
The form of Sortition practiced in Athens had it’s good points and bad points. Although sortition was used they did not include women and slaves (the working class). Athenian sortition had a system of checks and balances and separation of powers, some elected positions, but mostly government by Sortition. We have the advantage that women and the working class would be included. We would have a truly representative government without the influence of the power brokers. If we can communicate this idea to millions of people we can plant the seed of equity and compassion and sensibility and humanity in the hearts and minds of our future generations and incorporate SORTITION, in a limited roll or in totality, and improve our political process in order to better represent the people and eliminate the influence of the Power Brokers.
We use a form of sortition for our jury system, and we seem to have confidence in a system of justice that brings twelve unfamiliar people together to determine someone’s innocence or guilt.
“Athenian Democracy was not based on the principal that all citizens should participate in all decisions. That would have been as impractical in Classical Athens as it is today. However there are important principals and practices of Athenian democracy that can be applied today.
The first principle is ISONOMIA–the equal right of all citizens to exercise their political rights. Through Sortition all citizens who wished had an equal chance and high likelihood of serving in public office. This is fundamentally different from the extremely unequal chance of being elected to political office through election
The second principle is ISEGORIA–every citizen had the right to speak at the People’s Assembly and make proposals. Few citizens ever actually spoke at the assembly, but the right of any citizen to add new information or arguments was considered fundamental.”. Ref. Bouricius, Terrill G. (2013) “Democracy Through Multi-body sortition: Athenian lessons for the Modern Day,” Journal of public deliberation: Vol. 9: Iss. 1, Article 11.
What SORTITION accomplishes is amazing:
1. Sortition totally eliminates money in politics and with the ruling of Citizens United this is now more important than ever. No more pandering for money and selling principals for political advantage.
2. Just by the nature of a lottery you would increase the diversity of government incredibly. You would have 50 percent women and 50 percent men, you would have ethnic and religious representation, you would have the poor and middle and wealthy class represented more equitably and most importantly you would have a cross section of the American workers, from entrepreneurs to laborers. You would have school teachers, farmers, firemen, housewives, carpenters, artist, truck drivers and most of these real jobs in America involve problem solving. A condition foreign to our government at the present time. It would be an eclectic mix of problem solvers that without the negative influence of the power brokers would have a much better chance of doing what is right for the people, rather than what is right for their corporate masters. Imagine how the testosterone levels would go down in Washington if half of the decision makers were women, how reluctant would we be to go to war all the time if the people that made policy knew that it might be their children on the front line.
3. Apparently we have a relatively even split between democrats and republicans. The independents of which 50 percent of Americans claim to be can now be represented and not be left out of the two party system. There will effectively be no two party system left and no more monopolizing of the politics in OUR COUNTRY.
4. No more elections
5. No more gerrymandering
6. No more electoral college
7. Sortition is what our jury system is based on
,8. Eliminates the influence of lobbyist
9. Eliminates campaigns completely
10. Congress is 80 percent white, 80 percent male and 92 percent Christian, hardly representative of America. Our country has changed, women are an integral part of our work force, independents outnumber republicans and democrats, money has become too much a part of our political environment. CORPORATIONS ARE NOT PEOPLE AND MONEY IS NOT SPEECH !!!!!!!!
I’ve been listening to alternative news for a long time and I’ve never heard anyone speak of SORTITION. Now maybe I’m naive, ( I know I am) but it seems to me that maybe the time for Sortition is now, and now that you know about Sortition, and if you think this is a worthy concept, get the word out and explore the possibilities. Sortition should be discussed as a valid alternative to our current political dilemma. I’ve contacted you because you have the heart, the means and the following to get the word out about SORTITION. I’m amazed that with all the turmoil in Greece the idea of SORTITION has never come up. After all they are the creators of this idea.
I look forward to hearing from you and what you think of Sortition. Anyway, good luck to you and yours and keep up the good fight.
PEACE &. LOVE. Lenny