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Forum Post: global quorum

Posted 12 years ago on Oct. 22, 2011, 6:13 p.m. EST by jkintree (84)
This content is user submitted and not an official statement

In a decision making body, there is typically a minimum number of members who must be present to be legitimately authorized to make decisions. This is called a "quorum." Frequently, a quorum exists when at least half of the members of the decision making body are present.

Sometime during 2012, it is possible that the number of people who have Internet access will reach half of the global human population.

According to Internet World Stats, as of March 31, 2011, there were 2,095,006,005 Internet users. Close to a billion Internet access devices, not including cell phones, have been projected to be sold in the single year of 2012.

The total number of people who have Internet access does not indicate the speed of their connections; a dial-up connection is not fast enough for decent quality video. Nor does it indicate the quality of the information that can be accessed; vital information might be censored or blocked behind proprietary barriers. Nor does it indicate the literacy or perspective of the people who are accessing the information; people tend to believe what they want to believe, or what they have previously accepted as the truth.

Those concerns would not apply uniquely to a self-organized global decision making body. All deliberative assemblies must deal with the diversity and limitations in abilities, knowledge, and perspectives of their members. The greater the number of people involved, the greater the diversity, and the greater the capacity to fill in for each other's gaps.

We may or may not reach a quorum of humanity with Internet access during 2012. We are close enough to a quorum that it is not too soon to begin thinking about what we will do when it happens.



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[-] 2 points by metapolitik (1110) 12 years ago

Great post.

To all the trolls and naysayers here:

This is the 21st Century!

For the first time in recorded history, we have the technological means to make Direct Democracy a reality:



Also, check out this post here:


[-] 2 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 12 years ago


a person unable to participate can be represented by someone of their choice

[-] 1 points by jkintree (84) 12 years ago

Perhaps ... as long as the will of the people can be accurately measured without violating the right of each and every citizen to a secret vote. Votes by representatives could not be secret because citizens need to be able to see whether their representatives are voting according to their desires, or not.

There are a number of other threads at OWS where the topic of direct democracy is being discussed. That's good. Having a quorum of humanity with access to the Internet, and having the ability to self-organize a global decision making body does point to the constitution of a direct democracy.

Actions approved by this body would not need ratification by a higher authority. There would be no higher authority. We would directly implement and enforce decisions relating to: a banking system that transitions into a resource based economy, a plan for immediate worldwide demilitarization, support for farmers to convert to organic methods, and so on.

Actually, the first thing that might need to be ratified by the citizens of planet Earth would be the rules. The Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the Earth Charter are pretty good wheels that have already been invented that could take us where we want to go.

[-] 1 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 12 years ago

why is the secrete vote a right?

[-] 1 points by jkintree (84) 12 years ago

If someone saw how you voted, and did not like how you voted, they might hurt you or your family. People have a right to vote according to their own conscience without intimidation.

I think that is why the right to a secret vote is stated in article 21 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

[-] 1 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 12 years ago

people have the right to free speech that should included voting.

If one is afraid to cast their vote because others might threaten them,

that is a violation of free speech.

[-] 1 points by jkintree (84) 12 years ago

Agreed. Everytime someone is fired from their job, beaten, killed, and otherwise harmed for exercising their right to free speech, including voting, that is a violation of their rights. Those rights are violated all too frequently. That is why people like to protect themselves by keeping how they vote as personal, private, secret information.

Of course, sometimes people feel strongly enough about an issue to make a public declaration, such as signing their name to a petition. I have a lot of respect for people who sign petitions. It's good to have both; opportunities to vote through a secret ballot, and ways to make public expressions of opinion such as through petitions and occupying space.

[-] 2 points by efschumacher (74) from Gaithersburg, MD 12 years ago

Not that I want to go all Kasich and Walker on you, but what steps will you take to prevent voter fraud? I think the little driving licence picture handed out by your friendly local DMV is not exactly going to scale up to a system that spans 2 billion users in 150+ countries. Moreover, the greatest opportunity for shenanigans will lie in the hands of the ISPs who run the connected Internet. And may I remind you that, however 'free' and 'open' you think the Internet is, these ISP owners are largely members of the same club that we hope to be free of.

[-] 1 points by jkintree (84) 12 years ago

How to prevent voter fraud? That's a good question.

While the Internet is a great tool for self-organized global decision making, it doesn't necessarily mean that the final voting will happen electronically. Maybe paper ballots is the best way to go. Video recording of the voting at polling locations could help document that everything is happening fairly, and that voters are not being intimidated or forced to disclose how they voted. It would be especially helpful to have a video record at each polling location when the ballot boxes are emptied, and the ballots dumped on the table, tallied, and reported. The database of the tallies from every voting location should be entered into an open database that can be viewed over the Internet by every citizen of planet Earth.

That leaves authenticating the identities of the voters. Perhaps some variation of social networking software could help with this. Each person has a unique set of relationships with other people. There is no one in the world who has the same parents, siblings, birth order, neighbors, friends, and associates as any other person. We can authenticate the identities of each other. If voting is done at local polling places, where people know who the other people that are voting are, the chances of fraud would be pretty small.

Yes, if the "will of the people" is the basis of the authority of government, as stated in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, we need to be confident that we can take an accurate measure of the will of the people.

[-] 2 points by atki4564 (1259) from Lake Placid, FL 12 years ago

Agreed, and I particularly like the statement -- we are close enough to a quorum that it is not too soon to begin thinking about what we will do when it happens -- so perhaps you would consider our group's proposal of an alternative online direct democracy of government and business at http://getsatisfaction.com/americanselect/topics/on_strategically_weighted_policies_organizational_operating_structures_tactical_investment_procedures-448eo , hit the facebook “like” button if agreed, and then join our group's 20 members committed to that plan at http://finance.groups.yahoo.com/group/StrategicInternationalSystems/

[-] 1 points by jkintree (84) 12 years ago

RE: strategically weighted policies ... tactical investment procedure

Step 1: Each Member makes a $500 Individual Capital Contribution to create their own Home Town Bank of 65,000 Members, such as Occupy (Home Town) Bank. Why? Because this would create 4,600 "new" Home Town Banks – Nationally – to completely REPLACE all of today's "old" banks (or 65,000 Members * 4,600 Banks = 300M in the American Population, and of course, the same logic can be applied internationally using 106,000 Home Town Banks, but which internationalism we won't address here because this is an American Presidential Election at this site and time).

That's just an excerpt from Step 1 of the "strategically weighted ... tactical investment procedure" proposal, and there are a number of other steps. Very interesting.

One alternative proposal is to create a "resource based economy" instead of trying to fix the monetary system. Proposals that attract enough attention and support could be offered for consideration from a self-organized global decision making body. May the best proposals win.

[-] 1 points by atki4564 (1259) from Lake Placid, FL 12 years ago

Also, RBE isn't a proposal without the FINANCING to build an RBE City of 65,000, so they need us to build that RBE city. By the way, I wrote most of the proposal with some changes being made in response to member questions in our group. It's not matter of being the best proposal, for both are complementary. Otherwise, RBE is putting the cart (their design) before the horse (financing).

[-] 1 points by atki4564 (1259) from Lake Placid, FL 12 years ago

A resource-based economy is the end result of our group's proposal; that is, our plan is a phased RBE plan in the transition of power from Wall Street to Main Street.

For example, there is an immediately effective and efficient solution to the problem of global warming as 1 of 48 Tactical Investment Procedures in the Transportation & Moving Services Group, as follows:

If the 99%, as Home Town Banks of 65,000 Members, divide themselves into 16,384 Vehicle Investment Groups of 4 Members, with each group of 4 Members purchasing a hybrid-diesel-hummer-limo Cab which they then put into their Town Cab Fleet of 16,384 Lino Cabs, then this would reduce their Individual Transportation Costs by 75% (Cost of 1 Cab / 4 Members = 75% less cost per member), and yet they would have a Luxury Limo Cab available to them, out of 16,000 cabs in their Town, five minutes after calling for one, but not necessarily the specific luxury cab in which they own 25%. And most importantly, let's not forget the lessening of Mother Nature's burden from having 75% fewer cars with no traffic jams, and thus 75% less CO2.

Furthermore, the list of simple productivity improvements like this one -- which the 99% want but the 1% don't want -- are endless, beginning with our 48 Tactical Investment Procedures at http://finance.groups.yahoo.com/group/StrategicInternationalSystems. But as their FIRST of Forty-Eight Tactical Investment Procedures, the 99% must control the banks as Bank Owner-Voters, and therein as Business Owner-Voters, before they can control their Town (and National) design in this manner which is much less costly (in terms of the worker hours needed to maintain it by 75% too) and yet have 75% greater luxury (such as a limo cab) at the same time. Consequently, to decentralize Banking & Business Ownership into a Focused Direct Democracy by Occupation & Generation is to lower cost 75% is to lower price 75% is to lower work 75% is to increase luxury by 75% is to lower Mother Nature's burden by 75%.

And that's just 1 of 48 Tactical Investment Procedures in our group at http://finance.groups.yahoo.com/group/StrategicInternationalSystems starting from where the 99% are now, and THEN you can take the 99% even deeper technically (or mathematically) into an even better resource-based system, such as that cited at TheVenusProject.com and VictoryCities.com.

So you see, once you get people thinking technically (or mathematically) like this, without arguing for argument's sake, in a way they can understand today, THEN you can move them to even high levels of optimally effective and efficient Town (& National) designs where the word "greed" and the phrase "lack of moral fiber" doesn't even exist, such as a resource-based economy, but which the people are not yet technically (or mathematically) prepared to understand at this time, but that can change as you improve their technical (or mathematical) capabilities in ways they do understand first, such as the example above, agreed?

[-] 1 points by jkintree (84) 12 years ago

It looks like a number of comments have been deleted from this discussion. That's unfortunate. According to my imperfect memory, some of those comments related to mob rule, taxing corporations, moving businesses to other countries to avoid taxes, and the need to deal with fair taxes at a global level.

Is it fair for a bunch of whiney, crybaby corporations to get a free ride even though they benefit from public services and infrastructure? A reasonable starting point for setting a rate of taxation is to estimate the costs of providing the public services and infrastructure that are necessary to maintain a stable, healthy society. Then we go about setting the taxation rates for the various parties who are able to pay taxes in order to cover those costs.

By the way, Lester Brown in "Plan B 4.0" has done a good job of estimating the costs of a number of key services that would move us towards a more stable, healthier planet.

[-] 1 points by malikov (443) from Pasadena, CA 12 years ago