Progressive Democracy

Six Common Political Problems
that would be corrected by
Progressive Democracy

The world has great need for security, peace, justice (both economic and political). The following is a list of six political problems common in many present day societies, which Progressive Democracy would correct and therefore permit working on the above priorities.

    1. Party Power Politics
    2. Legal system instead of a justice system
    3. Bureaucracy
    4. Soulless Corporate Entitlement
    5. Consumption rather than conservation centered
    6. Materialistic rather than spiritual goals
    7. Excessive government sovereignty
    8. International corporate autonomy - anarchy.

Progressive Democracy is a bottom up system
and in order to be successful
it requires that the masses mature spiritually
so that they will they select
more spiritually mature leaders.

      The Progressive Democracy system
      should result in each higher Council having leaders
      with an average spiritual maturity
      that is higher than the average of the Councils below it.

          Higher Councils should seek to direct the spiritual growth
          of lower Councils towards attaining
          a spirit of service
          autonomous motivation
          development of capacity
          energetic efficient use of resources.

The key is consultation
and every Council level must learn
to practice that art which involves
listening with the heart for truth
comprehending with the mind others positions
having patience in listening to others
and courtesy in expressing one's self.
There must be absolute detachment from any interest
other than the furthering of Justice.

Progressive Democracy
Fake Fascist Demockery (FFD)
Conscience and Principle

Law and Precedence
Restorative Justice Administrative justice
Individual Conscience of each Servant

Party Power Politics ruled by 'whips'
No outside influence on Servants

Influence by power brokers, (lobbyists, etc.)
Point 5: text here

Point 5: text here.

    Progressive Democracy

    is a system based upon
    a constitution of stated
    rather than a system
    based upon
    legalisms or law.

    In Progressive Democracy -
    every person is represented equally.

Description of FIRST level Council elections.
a. One person - one vote

b. Everyone over age of 15 eligible to vote

c. From age 15 each person eligible to be voted for as Servant

d. Secret ballot

e. Nine Servants
f. 1/3 of Servants elected each year

g. Majority vote selects the Servants

h. No campaigning, nominating or such permitted

i. No re-election of Servant until out of office for 3 years

j. Monthly meeting with electorate to:
1. report Council's concerns and decisions
2. hear community's expressed views and recommendations

k. Community can vote on recommendations
but they are ONLY recommendations
and are not binding and carry no authority

l. Geographic community size between 50 and 200

m. Community size and boundaries determined
by the next highest Council.

Discussion of points a-m

a. One person - one vote

Alternatively some might argue that those individuals with greater experience, having perhaps served as Servants, or who have shown greater service to the community - perhaps having served in its defense, or who perhaps have greater education, or greater positions of prestige (such as managers) or who are thought to have greater spiritual qualities - or on some other basis might be given more votes. Such would be the egalitarian argument. In the past there have been systems where only men, or women, or landowners, or taxpayers, or some other category have voted but the criteria held here is that each and every soul is equal in the society and has an equal voice.

b. Everyone over age of 15 eligible to vote

Alternatively some might argue that individuals should vote only at a greater age of maturity. In some societies only the elders, perhaps those of retirement age, have voted. However, the goal here is to have every young person participate from the outset of maturity which is seen occurring at about the age of puberty and at a time when they should be able to make a substantial contribution to the society. In the past, youth were sometimes sent off to fight in wars, about which they had no say, and yet they were denied the benefits of adulthood such as owning property, voting, and so forth. Full adulthood, along with its responibilities, should be recognized at this early age and from this age on the youth should be fully involved in the community.

c. From age 15 each person eligible to be voted for as Servant

There has always been a fear that some groups that were not mature or responsible enough would gain control of society. Some systems because of these fears prevented the voting of women, individuals who were not taxpayers (poll taxes), non-property owners, slaves, indentured servants, those who had not been long-time residents, people of different races, or religions or those who had not served the society in some particular way such as soldiers or priests. It is unlikely in the system described here that any one particular group might gain control and it is very important that all feel that they have an equal role.

d. Secret ballot

Simply that no one knows how anyone votes. Can be done by handing out pre-printed ballots or simply blank sheets of paper. The ballot counting needs to be quite open and transparent, although not necessarily the same as used by the catholic cardinals to elect a new pope. There each cardinal stepped forward in order as their name was called and placed their single ballot on a tray on top of a glass box. Another person then stepped forward and tipped the tray into the glass box before the next cardinal voted. Also key to the process is selection of the individuals who count the votes. Most of all voting should not be done by machine or computer. Something akin to the above described process is all that is necessary.

e. Nine Servants

There could alternatively be five, seven, eleven or some other odd number. The reason for having an odd number is so that there will not be tie votes in decision making and that conflict will thereby be reduced. The number of Servants should not be so small as to reduce diversity of opinion, nor so large as to be inefficient. The number of nine has often been seen to be a good size as on the US Supreme Court.

f. 1/3 of Servants elected each year

By having staggered elections with 1/3 of the Servants elected each year there will be both continuity and experience in the makeup of board of Servants. There should also always be elected alternates in the order that they would take office so that new elections will not have to take place because of vacancies due to any reason such as (but not limited to) death, illness, or a member being elected to a higher Council.

At the initial formation of a Council - those elected should be for staggard terms in order to start the process. If the Servant outstanding duration times later become unbalanced through resignations and such - this can be rectified by drawing lots.

g. Majority vote selects the Servants

Each Servant must be elected by a majority. A valid ballot must contain no more names than the number of positions being voted for (although it may contain less) and no name may appear twice. No ballot should be discounted if it holds an invalid name (names could be invalid because of age, or because the individual voted for has been a Servant within the three years previous, or the individual is not on the voting list, or for some other reason) but just that vote should be discounted and not the whole ballot.

Any person receiving a majority of votes, of those present and voting (that is to say - of the number of ballots cast) is then elected to a Servant position. If not all Servant positions have been filled then balloting will continue with subsequent ballots being for the number of the remaining positions to be filled.

h. No campaigning, nominating or such permitted

There is to be no campaigning, nominating, supportive speeches, or the like. After each ballot there should be a listing of all the names voted for and the number of votes they have received. Any ineligible names voted for can be indicated.

It may be desirable, especially in larger communities, that each person that has received a vote stand before the the community and speak for a set time of a minute or two about which issues they think are most pressing to the community at the moment. This would permit the electorate to become more familiar with the individuals. This procedure could be repeated on subsequent ballots as the electorate desires.

It is essential that the electorate strive to develop in spiritual quality in its selection of Servants. Intellect, trustworthiness, altruism, dedication, demonstrated service, and so forth are but a few of the qualities that each elector must consider in making their choice. The overall needs of the community should be considered also. If there are minority groups in the community the individual electors should take that into consideration to see that they are represented. This could apply to sex, education, age, wealth, or whatever sub-groups within a community might feel discriminated against.

The goal is to create harmony within the community, to make sure that the diversity of ideas within the community are represented and that there is a sense of justice, while at the same time seeking to select leaders with the highest spiritual attributes. The antipathy of this philosophy and attitude would be the desire of some majority to enforce its will upon a minority.

i. No re-election of Servant until out of office for 3 years

The election procedure may continue for a specified number of alternate Servants to be ready to serve in the order they are elected should a vacancy occur and so a by-election need not be called but by-elections can be used if desired or necessary.

An alternate would be elgible to be elected in subsequent elections should they have not actually served but anyone who has actually served as a Servant would not be eligible for re-election, even at the lowest level, until after they have been out of office for three years at all levels.

There are several reasons for this prinicple. Firstly, it prevents there becoming cliques of Servants. Secondly, it enhances broader community envolvement. Thirdly, it develops more broadly and deeply the leadership skills throughout the community, which is a bounty in itself.

j. Monthly meeting with electorate to:
1. report Council's concerns and decisions
2. hear community's expressed views and recommendations

To assure community awareness, participation, support, and the responsiveness of the Servants to the communities needs there must be a monthly meeting of the community with the Servants. The Servants should first report on programs, activities, decisions, problems, goals, successes and so forth to the community and then they should listen to viewpoints, concerns, ideas, suggestions and so forth put forth in the meeting by any of the members who wish to speak.

Qualities of courtesy, tolerance, humility, and encouragement should be developed on both sides in these exchanges.

k. Community can vote on recommendations but they are ONLY recommendations and are not binding and carry no authority

While the community may make recommendations to the Councils and may show strength of support for the recommendations by voting on them - they remain only recommendations and are absolutely NOT binding on the Servants who have total authority and freedom in making their decisions within the parameters established by the higher Council levels of the hierarchy.

This is a good place to reiterate that the individual Servants also have no authority and that ALL authority rests in the majority vote of the Servants at each Council level and in submission and obedience to the authority of the Levels above them.

l. Geographic community size between 50 and 200

Communities should be in number between 50 and 200 voting members. If there are fewer than 50 it may not have the necessary diversity or depth of skills and above 200 it is not possible for the electorate to become well acquainted with their Servants. Also, as units of a hierarchy of communities, it is necessary that the communities remain in this range to maintain a balance in the hierarchy. Should a community fall below 50 voting members in number, then that community should be combined with another. And should a community exceed 200 in number then that community should be split up into separate communities of 50 or more voting members, although not necessarily of equal size.

m. Community size and boundaries determined by the next highest Council.

All community lines should be based upon geographic boundaries. These boundaries may be determined by the next higher community in the hierarchy. Everyone within that boundary would be a member of that community and the community cannot exclude anyone. Neither can anyone within one geographic boundary join a different community or opt out of the community in which they reside.

Description of Heirarchy Levels.
a.Each higher Council level of the heirarchy is composed of Servants
elected from the Servants in the Council level immediately below

b.Each lower Council of Servants elects one current member Servant to the next Council level above and the created vacancy in the electing lower Council is then filled by the next alternate from the next Council level below it.

c.Higher Council level servants serve for a period of three years. Higher levels are composed of nine members and their term of service is the same as and for the same reasons as the lower levels.

Those who reach the three year limit of service at a Council level immediately vacate their chairs and the others at that Council level move up in the chairs in the order that they have been elected so as to immediately fill those vacancies and any others as they occur from death, illness, resignation, or whatever other reasons.

The key point being that the responsibilty / privilege for replacing any Servant's position rests soley with the immediately lower geographic Council level that elected the resigned Servant and that the newly elected Servant then sits in the lowest chair.

d.As described in the above procedure, the longest serving one third or more of the higher Council is replaced each year by each of the communities that originally elected them. Therefore, at least once every three years, each community elects a Servant to the next higher Council.

It would be well that each Council level pre-elect an alternate Servant for the next higher Council level in case a vacancy suddenly occurs. This pre-elected alternate would continue to serve as a Servant at the electing Council level until / unless a vacancy occurs at the higher Council level during their term at the electing level.

e. As with the root community level it is important that each higher council meet in an assemebly each month with the councils who elect it. If each higher council were composed of nine lower councils then each monthly assembly meeting should have 81 lower council members in attendance plus, of course, the nine elected members of the council itself. I envision each of the nine lower councils sitting together as a separate council group and their member on the higher council being identified as being from their council. As before - the combined assembly of councils can make proposals, vote on their position and so forth but the higher council is absolutely free to decide as it will.

f.Each higher Council level serves 9 lower Council level communities that are associated together on a geographic basis. The boundaries may be determined by a still higher level.

f.Since those who serve at the higher levels will have served continuously for some number of years there will be some Council level at which those who are not elected to a still higher Council level will be retired to a permanent counselor position.

Description of Counselors.
Counselors can be asked to take on tasks by the Servants, but they do not have to take them on if they do not wish to do so. Likewise, they may assign themselves any tasks so long as there is no objection by the Servants.

Counselors, like individual Servants, have absolutely no individual authority and the only authority that they may act upon is that which is assigned to them by a Council level and which may also be removed by that Council.

The purpose of this essay is to describe Progressive Democracy and compare it to the fake system that is practiced.

Progressive Democracy
Fake Fascist Demockery (FFD)
Point 1: In Progressive Democracy every person of the age of 15 and up gets one and only one vote for local persons for each of the postions in their geographical area.

Point 1: In FFD only 'qualified' / 'registered' individuals who receive 'credentials' in each locality are permitted a vote that is weighted between districts for 'electors' in the 'electoral college' who then choose between candidates selected by political parties at their conventions. Many of the key positions are appointed - and in effect for life.
Point 2: This basis of one person / one vote is seen as the definitive definition of democracy. Point 2: Supporters of the FFD make a point that theirs is not a 'democracy as such' and that their Founding Fathers formed a 'Republic'with a 'bicameral' system in which views / votes of a 'lower' house of representatives of the common people were restrained by a 'higher' house of privileged / money / upper class.
Point 3: Progressive Democracy holds that every adult has equal political value. Point 3: Supporters of the FFD feel that a one person / one vote system is like "two wolves and a lamb voting on what they should have for dinner". That is because they feel the poor will always vote to take the wealth of the rich if not restrained by the 'republic' bicameral system.
Point 4: Progressive Democracy assures that every adult regardless of race, sex, religion, education, wealth or other factor has the same political voice. Point 4: FFD when initially established prevented certain groups from voting based on their race, sex or lack of ownership of property. Discrimination still continues on the basis of age with age determining the eligibility to hold office.
Point 5: Progressive Democracy assures that every ballot is secret and that every vote is counted. Point 5: The FFD uses machines without audit trails to count the votes and there has often been evidence presented that elections were 'stolen' by those who controlled the counting and the machines.
Point 6: Progressive Democracy electors vote for individuals that they personally know. Point 6: FFD electors vote for individuals selected for them by a political party.
Point 7: In Progressive Democracy there is no campaigning and none is necessary because the electors can intimately know whom they are voting for. Point 7: In FFD there is expensive campaigning paid for by powerful lobbyist groups (usually corporations) to whom the elected are then indebted (which is all the term fascist means - and not some other emotional meaning such as about totalitarianism).
Point 8: In Progressive Democracy there is no 'balance of power'. All authority - legislative, administrative, judicial - rests with the elected Council. Point 8: In FFD the 'balance' of power between the legislative, administrative, and judicial branches made policy ineffective but the tension then gravitated towards centralized imperial rule by the presidency.
Point 9: In Progressive Democracy the principle is always one of each Council level selecting the best from among themselves to go on to the next higher level. Point 9: In FFD the pattern developed of always appealing to the lowest common denominator through emotional public relations campaigns.
Point 10: In Progressive Democracy the emphasis is always on encouraging spiritual progress and supporting all religions. Point 10: In FFD the proclaimed 'separation of church and state' became state antagonism against church activities and church values with no program for improvement of spiritual or moral values.
Point 11: In Progressive Democracy there is retained experience by only changing one third of the Servants each time. Point 11: In FFD continuity of experience is maintained by an ingrained and self perpetuating bureaucracy that continuosly enlarges itself and its areas of control.
Point 12: In Progressive Democracy no Servant is permitted to remain at the same Council level for over three years. The expression is "either up or out". This provides both retaining and promoting the best while always getting 'new blood'. Point 12: In FFD leaders maintain their positions and power through senority. Many of the key positions are appointed and retained for life. (Courts, Civil Service, Federal Reserve Governors, Chairmen of key Congressional Committees, Positions in the political parties), and so on and so forth.
Point 13: In Progressive Democracy no Servant has any power whatsoever and all decisions are reached through majority vote of the Council at each level. Each Council has full authority over each Council in line below it.

Point 13: In FFD through seniority and position individual chairmen, bureaucrats, and some heirarchial positions have immense power. Voting is most often enforced along 'party' lines.
Point 14: Progressive Democracy works on a basis of "Principles" rather than law and each council has absolute authority in specifying, administering and judging conformance to the principles at their sovereign encompassing level. Point 14: FFD is a system of 'rule by law and order' in which the wealthy have politicians, lawyers and judges to make the law conform to their wishes. Otherwise it is administered at the whelm of the unelected bureaucrats.
Point 15: Progressive Democracy has a 'sunset clause' for any 'Principles' that it sets forth so that any decisions must be constantly reviewed. Point 15: FFD just continues to pile on more and more laws and rules and regulations through the bureaucracies.
Point 16: The economic goal of Progressive Democracy is to always ensure full employment and to enhance the material and spiritual well-being of all the people. Point 16: The goal of the FFD has in practice been to assure that the wealthy become wealthier and that the spread between them and the poor becomes greater.
Point 17: Decisions in Progressive Democracy are reached through private consultation by the Council after input from the entire electorate of that level. Each Servant in the Council votes their own conscience and where necessary any one of them can request that it be by secret ballot. Point 17: In FFD there is fake raucous debate and posturing by the politicians but actual decisions are determined by the money and power of the lobbyists. The members of the legislatures often just vote as directed along 'party lines' and seldom do any of them actually read the mountainous documents of the legislation itself.
Point 18: In Progressive Democracy the consultative process leads to immediate decision and implementation of solutions. Point 18: In FFD there can be drawn out conflict between opposition without ever reaching a decision or action and 'compromise' can often be entirely ineffective.
Point 19: In the Progressive Democracy process - that which turns out to be a wrong decision can be immediately changed. All decisons / directives / policies have a 'sunset' clause - and must therefore be re-acted on those dates. Point 19: In FFD the drawn out procedure means that it is often just too time consuming to correct past mistakes and the over-all procedure is so laborious that there simply are not enough political resources to tackle most problems. Moreover, once enacted - bad legislation can stay on the books forever and the mountain of such legislation just grows and grows.
Point 20: In the Progressive Democracy process issues and solutions are stated as simple principles in a one or two page document. Point 20: In FFD the laws are voluminous, often contradictory to the joy of the lawyers, and are not even read by the most of the members of the legislatures who vote on them.

Problems in
The Establishment of Progressive Democracy
Progressive Democracy can only be established where there has been societal collapse of a previous existing system.

I perceive that it will have to be established through an organized 'missionary' effort the details of which will have to be developed in repsonse to the actual situation.

The following was derived from a list of perceived general difficulties in establishing a new system. Neither the original author of a list of summary statements (which I adapted and paraphrased) nor the author of the original concepts is aware of this presentation on Progressive Democracy although I have made an attempt to contact the latter. In the first column I list the definition of the problem as I have paraphrased and specifically applied it and in the second column discuss how it might be dealt with in the implementation of Progressive Democracy.

Anticipated Problems
in Establishing Progressive Democracy
based upon a General Critique
of the Problems
in Establishing any System

Consideration of HOW
the Anticipated General Problems
may be dealt with

    1) In the missionary effort to establish Progressive Democracy it may well be very necessary to establish goals and motivate the missionaries by showing how the goals are being met. But, the danger is that it will just become a matter of numbers and that the true spirit of Progressive Democracy will not be being spread.

    There is a danger in assuming that goals are being achieved - simply because numerical targets, (such as the number of newly established communities), are being achieved. The REAL issue that must not be ignored is whether those communities are truly functioning in accordance with the Principles of Progressive Democracy.

    As one solution, higher levels could set committees of observers of lower elections.

    2) A mechanical approach is by its nature dehumanizing in its effect on people and inhuman in its impact on society.

    Focus on form - rather than on content can have this effect. Nevertheless, we hope that in this case function will follow form. What will be necessary is a two-fold process of expansion and consolidation. The outward form will need to be rapidly expanded but there will also have to be an ongoing process of instilling the internal spiritual function. Hopefully the first part of the process can be accomplished rapidly but admittedly the second part may still be maturing decades or even centuries later.

    3) You use / 'waste' an awful amount of resource just managing the measurement system.

    However, systems that are not measured are unaccountable. That is one reason why in any large financial enterprise there need to be accountants. In this, as in most things, there is however, a matter of balance. There is also the problem that the accounting system can come to establish the goals and values. All these dangers need to be monitored.

    4) We try and solve issues with idealistic (?fail-safe?) designs rather than allowing systems to evolve.

    We need to design towards idealistic goals, otherwise systems left to themselves may evolve towards very anti-social ends.
    5) Re-organization (or reconstruction in my terms) could become the basis of insensitive and dehumanizing actions if the servants do not have the necessary spiritual qualities.

    The leadership must continuously strive to improve its moral values and virtues. This requires an insightful struggle and effort. Otherwise the statement of values will just become dogmatic and oftentimes hypocritical.
    6) If communication is all up and down the chain it will mediate information to senior decision makers so they will be immunized from the real data they need, and also from the consequences of their actions.

    The leadership must endorse / maintain / ecourage / and seek out means of communication from their masses. If they encourage only respect and awe for themselves - rather than full and frank direct discussion with the dissenters, both sides will become alienated from the realities with which they are dealing.
    7) This all comes back to one fundamental error, namely that of treating all the processes of government and organization as if they were tasks for engineers rather than a complex problem of co-evolution at multiple levels (individuals, the community, the environment etc.) This classic reductionism is the enemy of the spirit and often the opposite of finding spiritual solutions to complex problems.

    The solution is the statement and CONTINUOUS restatement of PRINCIPLES at each and every level, and in each and every step, of the process.