Posted 1 year ago on Jan. 1, 2012, 4:30 p.m. EST by A3Admin
This content is user submitted and not an official statement
When it comes to measuring the performance of our government, we must have goals to measure against. If the words of the Gettysburg Address have any value, then the concept of a government "by the people, for the people" is one of the best summaries of our founding goals. Another way to put this is Quality of Life for ALL of the people. There is another saying that we hear all the time which most people completely misunderstand. It is credited to Bentham and John Stewart Mill, "…the greatest good for the greatest number." Most people view this in the form of a percentage. That is, "as long as, say, 80% of the people are doing well, what's the problem?" The problem is, as the population grows, how many people are there in the 20% that are not doing well? We hear often now that 25% of the families in the U.S. go to bed hungry every night. 25% seems to be a "small" number, right? But viewed as an absolute number, this is 75 MILLION people! For our society to have any chance of viewing itself as "humane", this is a tragedy. 1 million would still be a tragedy. 10,000 would still be a tragedy.
So, to be worthy of our human potential, we need to reevaluate our priorities as a society. We need to address what QUALITY our collective effort, i.e. our government, is bringing to the least capable among us. We need to set out GOALS based on Quality of Life.
This, however, opens up a huge and controversial discussion: what is the purpose of life? How should people treat each other? A key assumption I keep hearing among the 99% view is that, 'people, through their governments, should build a world that "GUARANTEES" EVERY HUMAN BEING sufficient support to achieve our founding goals of LIFE, LIBERTY and PURSUIT OF HAPPINESS. This is not a short term objective either. We want this for ALL generations in the future, not just for the benefit of people in power now. If this is so, there are necessary implications. It means we need to add two more DEMANDs to the Occupy Wall Street list:
Congress shall establish a Department of SUSTAINABILITY, with the responsibility for developing a WORLD MODEL that addresses ALL the known and reasonably anticipated factors which significantly affect the welfare of human society. All new laws presented to congress for action must demonstrate that they are not harmful to future life on this planet, EITHER in aggregate or LOCALLY.
The criterion used for social planning related to judging harm shall not be limited to economic indicators, but, rather, must hold PRIMARY, parameters accepted by WORLD populations as contributors to the QUALITY OF LIFE. The WORLD MODEL must EXPLICITLY state the PUBLICLY ACCEPTED BASIS for economic disparity which is used to judge harm.
These issues are discussed further at http://a3society.org under Sustainability.
The purpose of this post is to gather a very wide range of input from EVERY person in society about what is important for a "good" QUALITY OF LIFE for them?
(This post is part of a collection of posts aimed at launching a new process called the National Opinion Collection System (NOCS). For more information on the process, see http://occupywallst.org/forum/occupytheconstitution-introduction/ )