How do we reform the US political system to put leaders in office!

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How do we reform the US political system to put real "leaders" in office!

It is my belief that all enduring institutions have a cycle. When they are first formed the social values that they uphold help drive social evolution to a higher standards of value. However there is a tip over point where the institutions become dogmatic, corrupt, and the values the uphold are no longer higher social ideals but instead become the very baser morals that hold society back.

I believe that capitalism succeeded where socialism failed because of motivation. Profit-motive is a powerful motivator. America is a shining example of what free, educated, and motivated people can accomplish. Americans are made up of all the worlds cultures and races so this isn't a national cultural or racial accomplishment.

The problem is that greed is immoral. We need another motivator, something other than greed to motivate people. I don't propose replacing capitalism, profit-motive is still the primary social motivator in any society and I don't think it will be replaced anytime soon.

The head of FEMA is a political appointee and a big donor to the Bush campaign. He has no practical experience or even education in disaster management and the NO crisis makes that starkly obvious.

How do we motivate people to serve?

My idea is we change the system of suffrage in this country. Make suffrage a privilege that is earned through service. and allow people who serve their communities to earn greater suffrage.

Right now the only people with any power to influence the government are those that can afford to pay lobbies, or band together to form lobbies.

I would rather have the good citizens of my local community who actively work to make their community a better place have more say in who is elected.

If people are motivated to serve, we will have more people volunteering to work to make their community a better place. This will in turn reflect well on the rest of the country.

Service can be the military, peace corps, library, tutoring, volunteering in charitable organizations etc. I am certain that with the minds I have encountered on this forum, from the right, left, and middle, that you people can refine this idea into something more workable than my crude theory.

Would anyone care to give it a try?

Thanks in advance.
 
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Answers and Replies

  • #2
TRCSF
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We can start by turning off Fox News.
 
  • #3
russ_watters
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Skyhunter said:
I believe that capitalism succeeded where socialism failed because of motivation. Profit-motive is a powerful motivator.

The problem is that greed is immoral. We need another motivator, something other than greed to motivate people.
That's going to be a tough sell. It goes against biology itself.
My idea is we change the system of suffrage in this country. Make suffrage a privilege that is earned through service. and allow people who serve their communities to earn greater suffrage.

I am certain that with the minds I have encountered on this forum, from the right, left, and middle, that you people can refine this idea into something more workable than my crude theory.

Would anyone care to give it a try?
Ehh, I don't see how that can be made to be compatible with the Constitution, so before I'd try to impliment it, I'd want to be sure we should.
 
  • #4
Astronuc
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I nominate Russ Watters for President of the United States!

Go get 'em Russ!
 
  • #5
DM
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Skyhunter said:
My idea is we change the system of suffrage in this country. Make suffrage a privilege that is earned through service. and allow people who serve their communities to earn greater suffrage.

So you think that by making suffrage a privilege, it would tackle the motivation problem amongst our society? I think it would exacerbate it.
 
  • #6
vanesch
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Skyhunter said:
My idea is we change the system of suffrage in this country.

I think indeed that there is something wrong with the republican system where there is ONE winner of the elections. The fundamental problem is this: new ideas (and new parties) DON'T MAKE ANY CHANCE. And the reason is the following: someone who would be inclined to choose for the new party (which is of course, from starters, not expected to gain directly an absolute majority: things need to grow), would be silly to vote for it, because he will take his vote away from the traditional party that is closest to his view, hence making the chances higher that his OPPONENTS will win. This is in fact what happened during the last elections for Chirac: there were about 16 candidates in line in the first round, with two main competitors: left-wing Jospin, and right-wing Chirac. However, the left had many candidates (communist, green, revolutionaries etc...), while the right had only 3 or 4. So what happened ? Jospin got THIRD, after extreme-right wing Le Pen. If you made the sum of all left wing candidates, that was FAR ABOVE the sum of right wing candidates, but in the second round only the first two participated: Chirac and Le Pen. So all those who liked the ideas of some left wing candidates and did not vote for the "traditional" candidate Jospin, obtained in fact that they had, in the second round, a choice between right and extreme-right!
Now, the American system is much more optimized in that way, so with such a system you will always have a bi-party system that gets locked in, and no others can grow.
 
  • #7
Evo
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Astronuc said:
I nominate Russ Watters for President of the United States!

Go get 'em Russ!
I'll second the nomination!!! (never hurts to suck up)

Astronuc for VP, or a post to Energy Czar?
 
  • #8
DM
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vanesch said:
I think indeed that there is something wrong with the republican system where there is ONE winner of the elections.

Vanesch, I think you're addressing the voting system, not suffrage, surely.
 
  • #9
vanesch
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DM said:
Vanesch, I think you're addressing the voting system, not suffrage, surely.

Eh, yes. I already reformed the suffrage :-)
The point was: have a random questionaire of 10 questions go with each voting, which are an "exam" of OBJECTIVE questions related to the item under voting (for instance, the program points of the candidates). Weight the vote with the score on the test.
The 10 questions would be randomly generated for each different voter, drawn from a previous pool of, say, 200 questions all candidates agreed upon.
 
  • #10
Burnsys
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vanesch said:
Eh, yes. I already reformed the suffrage :-)
The point was: have a random questionaire of 10 questions go with each voting, which are an "exam" of OBJECTIVE questions related to the item under voting (for instance, the program points of the candidates). Weight the vote with the score on the test.
The 10 questions would be randomly generated for each different voter, drawn from a previous pool of, say, 200 questions all candidates agreed upon.

That is good. not vote for candidates, but vote for ideas...
 
  • #11
russ_watters said:
That's going to be a tough sell. It goes against biology itself. Ehh, I don't see how that can be made to be compatible with the Constitution, so before I'd try to impliment it, I'd want to be sure we should.
Good point, and one I would like to hear further discussion on.

Do you agree that our government is dysfunctional, or are you happy as long as the Republicans are in control?

DM said:
So you think that by making suffrage a privilege, it would tackle the motivation problem amongst our society? I think it would exacerbate it.
I would argue that this encourages people to participate. Those that are recognized as responsible, concerned, active, and thoughtful civic leaders will be the ones with the greatest voice. In order to earn greater suffrage one must gain the recognition of of their peers through service to the greater good.

And if some one is not interested in being involved their vote is like adding zero's anyway. And I would rather concerned, involved, and educated people be the ones making the decisions.

Why should someone like Jack Abramoff have so much influence?
http://slate.msn.com/id/2116389/ [Broken]

Another thing I would suggest is reforming the corporate laws. Corporations should be allowed to exist only when they are recognized as serving the public good. If they are found to be harming the community there should be a mechanism in place to deny them their status. If a person breaks the law he goes to jail. When a corporation breaks the law they pay a fine. If the fine is an acceptable cost of doing business then they will pay the fine. If the penalty is the loss of their right to exist and the forfeiture of all their assets, they might be a little more sensitive to the needs of the community they serve.

Then tort reform would be unnecessary or at least practical. At the present time torts and market pressures are about the only restraining factors on corporations. They have thousands of times the influence over our government than we do.
 
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  • #12
Burnsys
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Skyhunter said:
They have thousands of times the influence over our government than we do.

They are your goverment, Ex ceo and directors actualy work in the goverment, plus looby, plus campaign contributions. They own your goverment.
 
  • #13
outsider
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Skyhunter said:
And if some one is not interested in being involved their vote is like adding zero's anyway. And I would rather concerned, involved, and educated people be the ones making the decisions.
Well said! I'm glad you started this thread Skyhunter and it seems to be on topic too. I don't have time to post right now, I agree most with:
Another thing I would suggest is reforming the corporate laws. Corporations should be allowed to exist only when they are recognized as serving the public good. If they are found to be harming the community there should be a mechanism in place to deny them their status. If a person breaks the law he goes to jail. When a corporation breaks the law they pay a fine. If the fine is an acceptable cost of doing business then they will pay the fine. If the penalty is the loss of their right to exist and the forfeiture of all their assets, they might be a little more sensitive to the needs of the community they serve.
This is the same type of mentality of which the war is being faught. The ends will justify the means for those who benefit. I will join you all later.
 
  • #14
Evo
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Skyhunter said:
Another thing I would suggest is reforming the corporate laws. Corporations should be allowed to exist only when they are recognized as serving the public good.
:confused: You're suggesting we get rid of free enterprise??? Sorry, in the real world, businesses are created to turn a profit. :bugeye:

If they are found to be harming the community there should be a mechanism in place to deny them their status.
There are currently laws in place if a company breaks environmental laws.

If a person breaks the law he goes to jail. When a corporation breaks the law they pay a fine. If the fine is an acceptable cost of doing business then they will pay the fine. If the penalty is the loss of their right to exist and the forfeiture of all their assets, they might be a little more sensitive to the needs of the community they serve.
Do you understand why corporations are allowed?
 
  • #15
edward
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Evo said:
:confused: You're suggesting we get rid of free enterprise??? Sorry, in the real world, businesses are created to turn a profit. :bugeye:

There are currently laws in place if a company breaks environmental laws.

Do you understand why corporations are allowed?

It is the methods corporations have been using to turn those profits that have become a problem. I remember an old saying: "What is good for General Motors is good for the nation." At the time of its saying that statement was true.

But now we have :

http://www.forbes.com/2002/07/25/accountingtracker.html

And:

http://www.securitiesfraudfyi.com/investment_brokerage_fraud.html

When the actions of corporations affect large numbers of people, and the economy in negative ways, it is time for change. They must be held accountable for their actions yet seldom are.
(except for Martha and Bernie) :smile:

I realize that a CEO has an obligation to gain the highest possible return on the stockholders investment. But we have to draw a line. Dishonesty can not be tolerated. Yet dishonesty seems to have become the norm.
 
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  • #16
loseyourname
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Skyhunter said:
If the penalty is the loss of their right to exist and the forfeiture of all their assets, they might be a little more sensitive to the needs of the community they serve.

That would be incredibly unfair. You have to remember that corporations are publicly owned. If you forced a corporation to forfeit all of its assets because of illegal actions on the part of its CEO, you'd be punishing millions of shareholders who did absolutely nothing wrong. Taking away just the assets of the CEO, however, seems like a pretty good idea.
 
  • #17
Evo said:
:confused: You're suggesting we get rid of free enterprise??? Sorry, in the real world, businesses are created to turn a profit. :bugeye:

There are currently laws in place if a company breaks environmental laws.

Do you understand why corporations are allowed?
:eek: No! That would be a disaster. :eek:

I am no way suggesting that.

Profit motive is linked to the primal survival instincts, it is almost as strong a motivator as sex. Well for some especially the impotent it can be an even a greater motivator. I am suggesting that we add another motivation to the people and limit the power of corporations, which are made up of people.

It is the people who own these corporations that need to have some other motivation besides greed. I truly believe that human nature is benevolent, and when given the option people will choose a better way. I would like to find a better way.

A corporation is not a person. I believe that a corporation should be required to demonstrate that it adds value to the people it serves other than a healthy bottom line. Now there should not be a rigorous process to incorporate, however a corporation should be answerable to the people when it affects them, and if the people are unhappy the corporation should be made to comply with the will of the people or cease to exist. Laws create corporations so laws should be able to destroy them.
 
  • #18
russ_watters said:
That's going to be a tough sell. It goes against biology itself.
But it is compatable with the human spirit.
 
  • #19
russ_watters
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Astronuc said:
I nominate Russ Watters for President of the United States!

Go get 'em Russ!
"I do not seek, nor will I accept...."

Besides - the Republican Party would never allow someone who is pro-choice, pro gun control, and anti-SS to be nominated.
Skyhunter said:
Do you agree that our government is dysfunctional, or are you happy as long as the Republicans are in control?
I doubt that there is anyone in the country who wouldn't say there are parts of the government that are dysfunctional. Heck, we can start with FEMA!
Another thing I would suggest is reforming the corporate laws. Corporations should be allowed to exist only when they are recognized as serving the public good.
I realize you're just brainstorming here, and these aren't fully developed ideas, but these ideas lead to some scary places. Evo touched on this, but the US economy is not powered on food and clothing, it is powered by sales of things we don't necessarily need - tv's, cars (good cars), nice clothes, entertainment, etc. Putting a crimp on those industries would absolutely destroy the US economy. And thats just the practical side - its also against the very principles on which the US was founded.

Part of this may be misunderstandings, though:
If a person breaks the law he goes to jail. When a corporation breaks the law they pay a fine.
That's not exactly true. No, Bill Gates didn't go to jail for his company's violation of the Sherman Act, but most of the top-tier execs of Enron and Worldcom are in jail, and a lot that didn't saw their companies essentially destroyed (see edward's link). Companies aren't entities unto themselves, they have leaders and those leaders are accountable.
Then tort reform would be unnecessary or at least practical. At the present time torts and market pressures are about the only restraining factors on corporations.
I think you underestimate the capacity of the average American for finger-pointing. The worst lawsuits aren't even against corporations - they are personal injury lawsuits.
A corporation is not a person. I believe that a corporation should be required to demonstrate that it adds value to the people it serves other than a healthy bottom line. Now there should not be a rigorous process to incorporate, however a corporation should be answerable to the people when it affects them, and if the people are unhappy the corporation should be made to comply with the will of the people or cease to exist.
Could you expand on that - perhaps give an example?
edward said:
When the actions of corporations affect large numbers of people, and the economy in negative ways, it is time for change. They must be held accountable for their actions yet seldom are.
That isn't what your link shows, edward. Roughly half of the scandals listed involve arrests/prosecutions of execs or the destruction of the company involved.

Perhaps laws need to be toughened (I'm all for it), but there isn't any basis for throwing out the capitalist system.
 
  • #20
Manchot
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That's not exactly true. No, Bill Gates didn't go to jail for his company's violation of the Sherman Act, but most of the top-tier execs of Enron and Worldcom are in jail, and a lot that didn't saw their companies essentially destroyed (see edward's link). Companies aren't entities unto themselves, they have leaders and those leaders are accountable.
Here's what I think should happen. If a corporation breaks a law, it should be able to face jail time. What do I mean by this? All of its assets would be frozen, and it should not be allowed to conduct business while it is "incarcerated." Now, I realize that you might say that's it's unfair to the stockholders, but by the time the criminal investigation becomes public knowledge, the stock price will drop to a low amount anyway. If a corporation is going to be treated as a person under the law, we should go all the way with that.
 
  • #21
Astronuc
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We simply need political leaders with integrity, just as we need corporate leaders with integrity.

That means those who have such integrity must be encouraged and supported and voted into office.

Look at Senators Alan Simpson (WY), Warren Rudman (NH), John Danforth (MO) - all very fine men who got tired of the system. They are the kind of people who need to be encouraged to stay.
 
  • #22
vanesch
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Skyhunter said:
It is the people who own these corporations that need to have some other motivation besides greed. I truly believe that human nature is benevolent, and when given the option people will choose a better way. I would like to find a better way.

I think that the problem is not so much that people leading corporations are motivated by greed (or motivated by those motivated by greed) or whatever, I think that the problem is that BIG corporations have so much money that the persons in charge of them can use that money to influence politics, and not just "doing business in the market" like in the economy textbooks: using their money to improve their production process etc... but just using their money to push through policies that are advantageous to them.
Small is beautiful. Small corporations (greedy or not) have to play by the book. Big corporations can use the political card to play to "cheat" on the market.
I had suggested an upper limit to the amount of money a company (or a person) can have, high enough not to have any luxury desire being frustrated, but low enough that its political impact remains neglegible.
 
  • #23
russ_watters said:
Evo touched on this, but the US economy is not powered on food and clothing, it is powered by sales of things we don't necessarily need - tv's, cars (good cars), nice clothes, entertainment, etc. Putting a crimp on those industries would absolutely destroy the US economy. And thats just the practical side - its also against the very principles on which the US was founded.

Perhaps laws need to be toughened (I'm all for it), but there isn't any basis for throwing out the capitalist system.

OK, I concede completely destroying a corporation is a bad idea. But changing the corporate culture is important. I have always avoided large corporations so I don't have a lot of experience with them.

I am not advocating throwing out the capitalist system! I think it ranks as one of the greatest institutions of mankind. I am advocating that we augment it and reign in the out of control corporate government. If it is not obvious to people now it will be in the next week as we see starkly how our government now serves private interests, not public ones.

FEMA was privatised and look how well they responded to the NO flood. We knew almost a week before she hit that Katrina was going to wreak havoc and it took 4 days to respond! I'll admit that handing out money indiscriminately to disaster victims was not the best course for FEMA to take, however it was far and away more effective at disaster response than the privatised version.

Yesterday, while people are drowning in their attics in New Orleans. This is what the head of the RNC was doing.

Ohioans got an email from RNC Chair Ken Mehlman today asking for their help in an urgent effort -- calling Sen. Voinovich and demanding he repeal the estate tax.
Is this where our priorities lie?

Is this how government serves the public interest?

We need to take back our government. It no longer serves the people. I think we need to reform the system. I don't know the answer but I feel fortunate that I found somewhere to voice my ideas and get good critical feedback.
 
  • #24
kcballer21
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russ_watters said:
"I do not seek, nor will I accept...."

Besides - the Republican Party would never allow someone who is pro-choice, pro gun control, and anti-SS to be nominated.
That's exactly what is wrong with the system, there are only two platforms that a certain small group of people will allow to get elected. And not enough people realize how un-democratic this actually is.
 
  • #25
Astronuc said:
We simply need political leaders with integrity, just as we need corporate leaders with integrity.

That means those who have such integrity must be encouraged and supported and voted into office.

Look at Senators Alan Simpson (WY), Warren Rudman (NH), John Danforth (MO) - all very fine men who got tired of the system. They are the kind of people who need to be encouraged to stay.
I agree 100%. That is the reason I started this thread. Our current system does nothing to promote honesty and integrity in our leaders.

I want to figure out a way motivate people on a large scale to be better humans. Something akin to the profit motive of free enterprise.

Instead of one person one vote, allow people who are recognized as outstanding in their service to their communities have a greater voice in electing our leaders.

This in my view would accomplish two things.

1. It would motivate people to serve their communities thereby improving all of our communities.

2. The people with first hand experience working to better their communities will be the ones electing our leaders.

Those that don't care or are uninformed are the easiest manipulated with sound bites.

If I could earn 5 votes or 10 in recognition from the people in my community, that is a powerful motivator.
 
  • #26
Smasherman
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How will good samaritans gain these extra votes? Will community members elect to give them extra votes, or what?

Here's an idea for suffrage:

Give everyone one vote and the ability to sign their vote over to someone else. This way, your vote is counted regardless of who wins in your local race. People who aid their community might be likely recipients of extra voting power.

Also, the effects of voting apathy and political ignorance become negligible. If the person you gave your vote to votes differently from how you would in issues, you can just use your own vote or give it to someone else.

There are plenty of problems with this idea, but there are plenty of problems with our current system, as well. Ultimately an educated, informed populace is necessary for a successful democracy. This system just allows a better median.
 
  • #27
vanesch
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Skyhunter said:
Instead of one person one vote, allow people who are recognized as outstanding in their service to their communities have a greater voice in electing our leaders.

The fundamental problem I see with your proposal is: who will decide who is "recognized as outstanding in their service" ? And who will give you the *opportunity* to be outstanding in your service ? I see here a very high danger of a sect hijacking those assignments and recognitions, and as such get all the power to them.
I mean: if I want to be very powerful, I just make a lot of fuzz of all I did for the community ; once I'm a "star" in that domain, I "recognize" as very outstanding, my buddies, who on their turn, recognize others etc... as being very outstanding. As such, a small group would just have about all the power. We'd give then interesting positions from where it is easy to shed an image of "being outstanding" and reinforce more and more our grip on society.
 
  • #28
LURCH
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vanesch said:
The fundamental problem I see with your proposal is: who will decide who is "recognized as outstanding in their service" ? And who will give you the *opportunity* to be outstanding in your service ? I see here a very high danger of a sect hijacking those assignments and recognitions, and as such get all the power to them.
I mean: if I want to be very powerful, I just make a lot of fuzz of all I did for the community ; once I'm a "star" in that domain, I "recognize" as very outstanding, my buddies, who on their turn, recognize others etc... as being very outstanding. As such, a small group would just have about all the power. We'd give then interesting positions from where it is easy to shed an image of "being outstanding" and reinforce more and more our grip on society.

And beneath this problem is another (sort-of the root cause of the kind of problem pointed out in the above quote). Greed would still be the motivation. There are all kinds of greed, and the lust for money is only one kind. The lust for power is just as rpevalent, and just as dangerous, if not more so. This system merely replaces the method by which power is obtained, it does not change the motivation. It also intruduces a strong reason for people with ulterior motives to get involved in charity and community service organizations, which can be big trouble.

On the plus side, it does at least assure some community service out of those who wish to be in power. So it may provide a lesson in the concept of the "servant/leader" to those on their way to power.
 
  • #29
Astronuc
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I got involved locally in some planning issues as well as some human rights issues, and that got me involved in some local politics. :yuck:

I got to learn first hand about the local and state bureaucracy - which are largely independent of which political party is in power - sort of. What gets done or doesn't can depend on how well the upper level managers 'know' the senior party officials, and policitcal officials, as local and state level, and even federal level sometimes. It certainly is a good 'ol boy (and girl) network.

There is little difference between political parties in power - at least at the local level - each serves influential constituents - often lawyers and key business people - and often at the detriment to the community.

I have found accountability at the local level very poor.

And to top it off - most people who complain about the poor quality of the political system do not want to become involved because they don't want to face the assault on their person (negative campaigning).
 
  • #30
outsider
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russ_watters said:
Besides - the Republican Party would never allow someone who is pro-choice, pro gun control, and anti-SS to be nominated.
strange enough... we agree on this... but this doesn't mean you have my vote. :tongue2:
I realize you're just brainstorming here, and these aren't fully developed ideas, but these ideas lead to some scary places.
well, they are just words... what's the harm? bad ideas will become more evident after careful exploration of the possibilities... let the people roam. Russ, don't be a catcher in the rye.
the US economy is not powered on food and clothing, it is powered by sales of things we don't necessarily need - tv's, cars (good cars), nice clothes, entertainment, etc. Putting a crimp on those industries would absolutely destroy the US economy. And thats just the practical side - its also against the very principles on which the US was founded.
True, but as any stock or system or anything that America rides, there is a time to shift gears and move on. I'm not saying that we should, it's just that exploration is good for the mind. After we've satisfied our curiosities, we can come back to the old system know well that we've given the possibilities a fair shake and better knowing ourselves. Maybe it's time to sell out on the Capitalistic system and create a new system? Some people by Cadillac because that's what their daddy did... they don't even know that Lexus exists. (If you compare the Lexus and Cadillac, you will find that Lexus has fewer problems for the same money). It's just not traditionally All-American - but it's better. Move toward the best... whatever that may be...
russ-waters said:
Part of this may be misunderstandings, though: That's not exactly true. No, Bill Gates didn't go to jail for his company's violation of the Sherman Act, but most of the top-tier execs of Enron and Worldcom are in jail, and a lot that didn't saw their companies essentially destroyed (see edward's link). Companies aren't entities unto themselves, they have leaders and those leaders are accountable. I think you underestimate the capacity of the average American for finger-pointing. The worst lawsuits aren't even against corporations - they are personal injury lawsuits.
Water-under the bridge cannot be recovered or accounted for... how about all the money that passed through their hands and were spent and hidden in tin cans and off-shore holdings? It's not rocket science... it's greed... and they know well enough that once out of jail, they can live it up in Bermuda or Barbados. What's a few years in the slammer?

Perhaps laws need to be toughened (I'm all for it), but there isn't any basis for throwing out the capitalist system.
I don't think that's what Skyhunter meant... we are exploring it... Perhaps Russ, you are defending the capitalist system just out of fear that there might be something better... perhaps you are comfortable in your capitalists position, I can understand that. :approve:
 
  • #31
outsider
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vanesch said:
I think that the problem is not so much that people leading corporations are motivated by greed (or motivated by those motivated by greed) or whatever, I think that the problem is that BIG corporations have so much money that the persons in charge of them can use that money to influence politics, and not just "doing business in the market" like in the economy textbooks: using their money to improve their production process etc... but just using their money to push through policies that are advantageous to them.
Small is beautiful. Small corporations (greedy or not) have to play by the book. Big corporations can use the political card to play to "cheat" on the market.
I had suggested an upper limit to the amount of money a company (or a person) can have, high enough not to have any luxury desire being frustrated, but low enough that its political impact remains neglegible.
I like what you are saying. It is the foul play and lobbying that is the despicable part of American capitalism. This is similar to the payola scandals in the music industry. The idea that success is bought and that the rich get richer, is what also hinders and stifles motivation for some.
Here's what I think should happen. If a corporation breaks a law, it should be able to face jail time. What do I mean by this? All of its assets would be frozen, and it should not be allowed to conduct business while it is "incarcerated." Now, I realize that you might say that's it's unfair to the stockholders, but by the time the criminal investigation becomes public knowledge, the stock price will drop to a low amount anyway. If a corporation is going to be treated as a person under the law, we should go all the way with that.
just the same as all the family members who invest in a young child... one day, this child may become a criminal... he gets caught and you realize you were investing in illegal activity... and all investments are out the door... written off as a loss and you are lucky if you don't have to go to jail as an accomplice. Sure, you may wish that person the best... but you probably would think twice before lending them money, right? :smile:

If you invest in a company, it is up to you to do the due diligence. If you take a friends word for it, then you are a fool by association. Don't forget that Incorporation is a way of protecting one's assets... it's a covered risk... generally a prelude to potential disaster. Making money with other people's money... if you get out alive, you are laffing... and if not... o well, you still have your family, farm, and ford f-150. :redface:
 
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  • #32
outsider
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Skyhunter said:
If I could earn 5 votes or 10 in recognition from the people in my community, that is a powerful motivator.
plus your degree of accountability is greater... you live in the communitee and are not in a position of power... you do not maintain these votes to carry over and so you will need to continue your good works. are we getting somewhere?

Having managed numerous teams at a major corporation, I found that positive reinforcement and having sound team values based on the team itself worked very well. You would be surprised as to what a great motivator earning a prize and the accolades from your peers is worth. It actually is a catalyst to induce more competition. Some teams prefer cash prizes, some teams prefer novelties... however the point is that peer recognition is one of the highest tiers of maslow's heirarchy of needs. Also what I've found is that certain reps would continue to win prizes, which would hamper other team members abilities to perform, however in providing motivation to the motivated rep to help the unmotivated rep, the value of the community increased enormously as the motivated rep becomes a "mentor".
 
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  • #33
vanesch said:
The fundamental problem I see with your proposal is: who will decide who is "recognized as outstanding in their service" ? And who will give you the *opportunity* to be outstanding in your service ? I see here a very high danger of a sect hijacking those assignments and recognitions, and as such get all the power to them.
I mean: if I want to be very powerful, I just make a lot of fuzz of all I did for the community ; once I'm a "star" in that domain, I "recognize" as very outstanding, my buddies, who on their turn, recognize others etc... as being very outstanding. As such, a small group would just have about all the power. We'd give then interesting positions from where it is easy to shed an image of "being outstanding" and reinforce more and more our grip on society.
Excellent point and one i have struggled with. How do we keep keep it from being hi-jacked and turned into the same good old boy network of cronyism we have today. The most dangerous window of opportunity for this is of course during the transition period.

People who are already registered to vote should not lose their suffrage. I would make participation mandatory, if one elects to abstain, that would be fine, active abstention is still participating. Then it would be a matter of the people within their communities to nominate others for extra suffrage and the community would then vote. It should not be an easy thing and if you have made enemies it will be even harder. The details of how this would work is why i would like input from others. I am just a simple carpenter not a poli-sci major so I have huge gaps in my understanding.

And a person can lose their right of suffrage as well, it isn't a lifetime appointment. Being convicted of a crime would be one sure way, losing the respect of your community could be another.

It will not be long before communications will reach a plateau where debates and votes on a community level can be held relatively easy.
 
  • #34
outsider
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In addition, communities will have their specific needs... signing up for the task forces to address the needs... it's like a worklist, or shopping list... a mandate to a greater vision... those with skills will be providing theirs and those without skill can gain... it's a community project where a voted supervisor can watch over the progress using unbiased methods for tracking and judging results. This way it is clear to the community that each person has achieved their goal and earned the respect of the community. For instance, in my short time here at PF... I would recognize Skyhunter, russ_waters, The Smoking Man, Loseyourname and a few others as individuals who I would consider as outstanding in their post contents. These things just become evident over time... they have stayed loyal to the board and put much effort in their posts. PF mentors should be constantly requalifying just like Airline Rewards programs... it keeps people honest.
 
  • #35
"The Corporation" - must see DVD

Skyhunter said:
Our current system does nothing to promote honesty and integrity in our leaders.

I want to figure out a way motivate people on a large scale to be better humans. Something akin to the profit motive of free enterprise.
Hi Skyhunter

When you suggested you'd start this thread, I responded that I'd post my comments about why I do not believe capitalism can be 'reformed'. Well, I have just spent the last three hours riveted, watching the must-see DVD "The Corporation", which I hope is available in the USA ("The Land of the Free", "The Land of Democracy"). If you can get hold of it, I'd highly recommend that anyone who supports capitalism watch it. It shows so clearly why this system cannot be reformed.

Heck there's something in it for everyone:

Yonoz - find out the role IBM played in the Holocaust (war is great for business!).

Environmentalists - Listen to the CEOs' sickening, hypocritical statements about their 'concerns for the environment'.

Russ - one of your heros (Milton Friedman) even gets cameo appearances. Oh yes, and you can *see* evidence of the existence of sweatshops (something you doubted in another discussion we had ages ago).

The rest of you - see what the corporate elite tried to do to President Rooseveldt (and why). Oh yes, and check out what corporate leaders want to (and have already, in some countries) privatised: water (including rainwater) and air and... And they've also managed to patent living organisms!

And after you've seen this video, you tell me how you can *reform* this mess!

Anyway, here's a less personalised 'blurb' on this video, which I assume all of you interested in this issue will see because you are interested in furthering your knowledge on this topic (because, of course, you don't want to decide what you believe without giving the matter serious consideration!):

SYNOPSIS
THE CORPORATION explores the nature and spectacular rise of the dominant institution of our time. Footage from pop culture, advertising, TV news, and corporate propaganda, illuminates the corporation's grip on our lives. Taking its legal status as a "person" to its logical conclusion, the film puts the corporation on the psychiatrist's couch to ask "What kind of person is it?" Provoking, witty, sweepingly informative, The Corporation includes forty interviews with corporate insiders and critics - including Milton Friedman, Noam Chomsky, Naomi Klein, and Michael Moore - plus true confessions, case studies and strategies for change.

Winner of 24 INTERNATIONAL AWARDS, 10 of them AUDIENCE CHOICE AWARDS including the AUDIENCE AWARD for DOCUMENTARY in WORLD CINEMA at the 2004 SUNDANCE FILM FESTIVAL. The long-awaited DVD, available now in Australia and coming in March to North America, contains over 8 hour of additional footage.

The film is based on the book The Corporation: The Pathological Pursuit of Profit and Power by Joel Bakan.

Reference: http://www.thecorporation.com/index.php?page_id=2
 
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