Modern, Evolutionary Representation for the 21st century.
Unleashing our potential to make good decisions.
The time has come to bring a new structure to our politics, to create a more perfect structure that is better suited to the world we live in now. The goals of this new democracy are:
- to harness the creativity and ingenuity of all in the development of solutions to the problems we face
- to enhance the ability of everyone to shape the environment they live in
- to increase the accountability and effectiveness of our political process
There are three interrelated elements to the LIFE structure for representative government:
- Multi Layer Representation – Constituencies, imagined as a series of excentric rings emanating out from the core of every individual until the last ring encompasses the whole world.
- LIFE PR – A voting process that accommodates the variety of peoples’ perspectives whilst providing for effective decision making and action.
- Variable Law – A legal system that works with multi layered constituencies to give voice and power to the appropriate place in the structure, where it can be most effective, whilst allowing for that place to change when people want it to.
Working together, these elements create a harmonious structure of representative government that is the solution to many of the problems around the world stemming from issues of self determination and which delivers the accountability necessary to functioning democracy.
Multi Layer Representation
Stop. Close your eyes for a moment.
Think about the place where you live and your neighbours, together you form a Community. Imagine the boundaries of your Community in your mind. There are probably some geographical features that form the obvious boundaries, remember that there have to be enough people in your Community to be able to do things together like build a Community Center, decide on local taxes and have a police force. Not so big that you feel lost in it, but not so small that you can’t do anything practical either. About 10,000 people should do it.
Once you have a picture in your mind of your Community, think about the surrounding Communities and how you would all fit together into a Region with common interests. Thinking about transport is helpful here, imagine the places you would want to be able to take a bus to or travel to in an hour or so. Let that be your Region.
Now expand your vision out to include adjacent Regions, to form a State. This is quite a big area now, maybe even the size of the country you live in, or bigger. Your State will probably have about ten Regions in it and cover a continuous geographical area. Beyond your State, you live in an area made up of many States, each containing many Regions built on thousands of Communities, this is your TransTerritory. Finally you live in the World, along with everybody else from the other TransTerritories.
This is the real world that you live in today, already, right now. In each of these layers or rings, starting at your local Community, you are a citizen, a person with a right to have a say in the decisions that are made. So it makes sense that you should have a vote in the governments of each of those layers and that those governments should be responsible to all the people that live within their boundaries.
In the new democratic structure you will have a vote in each of those layers. You will vote on an equal basis as everyone else in the layer and you will vote for the same candidates as everyone else.
Here is a table showing the approximate size of each layer and some details about the governments in each layer.
More details about how this new democracy is structured are available in Representation.
LIFE Proportional Representation
Government must represent the people it is elected to organize. Those people have different options and perspectives and so the election system for respresentitives must reflect that variety in the results it produces.
What follows a description of the LIFE PR voting system. The thing to keep in mind as you read through this, is that the objectives are:
- to have the people’s wishes carried out through representatives who represent the spectrum of the citizenry
- it is important that the majority is not held hostage by small minorities, whilst allowing minorities a voice
- it is important that the government can be decisive at the same time that it is inclusive
The LIFE PR system achieves all this and is very similar to voting systems used around the world today, with one important exception: no election is ever for one individual representative. Elections elect a council of representatives who sit in an assembly together, and they all stand for election by all of their constituents. At the election, each citizen casts a ballot that has a first and a second choice from the available candidates, so that if their first choice cannot be elected their vote is transferred to another, rather than being lost or wasted.
The representatives chosen by the citizens in each government layer are charged with the responsibility of making decisions for the common good of their constituents. Acting within the law, they are the makers of the laws and act with the full authority of the citizens that elected them. There need be no higher authority, no executive or cabinet. Decisions are made by all the representatives of a duly elected government in public assembly and with open debate. When representatives vote in their government assembly, they do so with the weight of the number of votes they received at the last election.
More details about the LIFE PR election system is in Elections.
Variable Law is the natural partner of the Multi Layer structure, it provides the legal framework that makes multiple layers of government a reality. It is only a variation on the legal structure that we have today, it adds the flexibility to work with multiple layers of responsibility and creates the structure for trans-national law.
The basic principle of variable law is simple enough: laws are determined at the lowest layer of the Multi Layer Democracy unless they are voluntarily promoted up to the next higher layer. So the Community owns the right to set all laws in all public matters, but may chose to allow certain aspects of law to be determined regionally and so forth up the layers. Such that there are aspects of law that, in turn, all communities, regions, states and transterritories decide are the domain of the world, so that those become the law of the world and apply to all.
You can find more details in the Variable Law section of this site, but the important thing to take away is that every layer of government will have responsibilities that have been specifically assigned to them through a direct democratic process.