Chapter 5.c

July 22, 2010 — Riccardo Sabellotti - Giacinto Sabellotti

Teamwork and team spirit

THE DEMOCRATIC STRUCTURE

Let’s look at the future: they say that changes must come from young people, but which young people? Let’s make some clarity: by young people do we mean children? Adolescents? University students? Or the young people who, reached the full maturity, should face the problems of adult life? We are certainly talking about young adults, especially from a psychological point of view, those that have entered a phase of life when they are independent, and not just economically, young people who are aware of the difficulties of adult life and that must operate in their own interest. When one tries to confuse them with other young people, generally he does to get a pretext to manipulate young people still lacking of the right experiences and thus more easy to be circumvented. To incite the change by those who cannot do it, is clearly a strategy to not change anything in the name of reformism.
A satisfactory society should respect human nature and be democratic, but a true democratic culture is now non-existent. The social order of democratic structure that we are about to present is therefore currently impossible, although it is a serious project for the future, to be pursued after that the right cultural adaptation will spread; it is an important precondition in order to distinguish the problems within our reach from those which are not. The concept of modern village, however, as we have seen, is readily achievable and may even be the right mean for the dissemination of the democratic culture. It also is not in conflict with the political system into force, but it complements this system, just like the non-profit organizations, with the difference however that compared to these, it offers immediate benefits to those who take part to it and allows to save time, which is the resource that is now more valuable. The consolidation of the activities of the village can afford to entrench the culture of participation and sharing, while the development of federations of villages will allow to exceed its limits and may facilitate the spread of this model. On this basis we can then begin to define a new truly democratic social order.

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5.c.1 – What are the objectives to be achieved?

July 23, 2010 — Riccardo Sabellotti - Giacinto Sabellotti

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What are the objectives to be achieved?

To achieve a truly democratic society we set the following objectives:
– all people should actually be the highest authority
– the government must be a form of self-government, then it must follow the will of the people skilful, but dishonest, speakers should not have advantages over poor – but with good ideas – speakers
– real representatives must be elected
– there must be an effective control over the representatives
– there must be a selection of the best ideas
these objectives have been achieved on a small scale at village level, but now we must find ways to achieve the same result on much larger populations of thousands or millions of people.
Since the human being is a tribal animal, we believe that a society respectful of its nature should have as basic brick something resembling the modern village, as well as this latter, for the same reason, will be based on the families who form it.

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5.c.2 – What are the leaks of the ship on which we sail?

July 24, 2010 — Riccardo Sabellotti - Giacinto Sabellotti

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What are the leaks of the ship on which we sail?

Let’s try to remember the many weaknesses that we discovered in the current system:
– the lists of candidates are not democratically drafted by the people, but by political parties, private associations of a minority of citizens who are not organized in a democratic way, then the characters more in view of the parties, or even the  presidents, are those who compile the lists of candidates, thereby establishing who will be elected, and people are actually compelled to vote only the candidates who have been previously approved by the new ruling class. The remaining part of the population has the right to form new parties but in practice it takes years to organize themselves and to overcome all the difficulties that the current system requires, such as procuring the funding needed for the propaganda and participating successfully in the elections, where often there are thresholds of the barrier below which the party can’t get any representative. It follows that, in order to succeed, the new party must be born already corrupt and willing to betray his supporters; after years of waiting, having formed a new party would almost certainly appear to be unnecessary. The vote therefore is not truly free.
– in a population of several million inhabitants a representative is elected out of tens of thousands of voters who, not knowing him personally, are forced to choose him on the basis of the propaganda that have been made, the support of his party, newspapers and television, which means on the basis of the funding that he has obtained, extorting them or selling himself. In other words, under the current system, citizens are encouraged to elect the most corrupt and the most dishonest and not those who represent and protect their interests. The current system does not allow then to select the true representatives;
– citizens participate formally in politics only through voting in elections, the rest of the time they are completely excluded, have no way to discuss or require changes to programs presented by their representatives. With a single vote they must express their opinion on the management of the State in its various forms: foreign policy, security, health, environment, work etc… Since there is only a single vote to be expressed every four or five years, they can only choose between the programs formulated by the “Policy Masters”  who promptly rejected them once elected. The population is then managed from above, this is not a form of self-government;
– the current system, created with the best intentions at a distant age, without the present knowledge of psychology and human nature, does not take into account the fact that the individual citizen has not the possibility to develop on his own a proper democratic culture, nor considers the natural tendency to instinctively follow a leader or the tradition, without rational criteria. The basic premise on which the parliamentary system was based is that the common people naturally vote in their own interest by responsibly electing their representatives. Experience shows us today that, contrary to expectations, the common people cannot elect their own representatives and unknowingly they regularly vote instead against their own interests;
– in the current political model it is maintained the rough as old division between subjects and aristocrats: the ignorant people was politically uniform, devoid of decision-making power and was governed by aristocrats, to whom people had to ask for favors and protection. Even today the people, by a vote actually expressionless, chose their protector within the ruling class, but does not participate in the political debate. This also deprives people of the opportunity to develop through practice the skills and culture appropriate to participate in the policy management;
– in the parliamentary system the people are rightly regarded as equal in their rights, but it is not taken into account that they are different in their skills, experiences, culture, needs. It is not considered the importance in human society of specialization and especially in the political management, the system is designed as if all were equally expert on everything, when it is clear that they are not and can never be; the same principle is also applied to parliamentarians. The result is that it is often asked to express an opinion, to take a decision through a vote, to someone who is not competent to do so. Dispersed groups are then generated needing to be guided by the manipulators in office, whose number covers the voice of those who actually have the right skills;
– if the management of political programs, in theory, should be indirectly exercised by the people through the Parliament, the State administration, namely the practical application of the policy, is even more distant from the population; the ministers are not elected directly and they must give account for their actions only to parliamentarians and therefore to the lobbies who backed their appointment. The citizen, therefore, since parliamentarians are not real representative, has no means to exercise control over real politics.

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5.c.3 – Why didn’t we notice it before?

July 25, 2010 — Riccardo Sabellotti - Giacinto Sabellotti

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Why didn’t we notice it before?

When, shortly before 1800, the first parliamentary systems were introduced in the United States and France, the people entitled to vote was only a small part of population: all slaves, all women, all illiterate persons, all poor people etc… were excluded. They were therefore the application of democratic principles within a very small minority, not real democracies. At the time, it was considered that only those who had received an education and possessed a certain income could participate in democratic politics; today we know that usually even the wealthy graduates are not able to do so.
Whereas the number of parliamentarians was about the same as present and with a voting population so small, it was possible to have an elected parliamentarian out of about 300 voters, while today we have one in 50,000; the current problems concerning the representativeness were therefore minimized. In addition, the voting population, belonged broadly to the same social class, was more uniform than the current both for requirements and views; it was thus much easier to feel represented. Rightly the social injustices were attributed to unequal access to the vote, but otherwise the system seemed to work perfectly; it is natural then to think that, in total good faith, the theorists of democracy saw universal suffrage as the ultimate goal to be achieved, together with the construction of public schools accessible to all.
Experience has taught us instead that with the population growth, the parliamentary system is unable to secure a real representation and thus democracy; also it tends to corrupt and degenerate progressively, even by an administrative point of view. In an indirect democracy, to extend the vote to all the people has a sense only if those votes allow to elect true representatives, otherwise it is useless, although it can make the citizens and many politicians too believe to have achieved democracy.
From an educational point of view, we should notice that a more extended culture does not necessarily bring a more extended democratic culture; the schools also have the task of preparing good citizens for tomorrow and surely not some subversives, showing them the flaws of the system; all of us, over the past two centuries, have therefore been taught to think that the current system works and is complete thanks to universal suffrage. It was probably impossible in the nineteenth century to foresee that the extension of the right to vote to the entire population would have triggered a vicious spiral, formed by manipulators, propaganda and funding, such as to make the system inoperable. At the time, for communicating with the electorate made of a few hundred people, usually friends of friends, it was enough to make a political meeting in a square. Skilful unscrupulous speakers were certainly an advantage, but it was slight compared to the present ones, nor it was necessary that the candidates sell themselves to get funding for propaganda. Today, before the proliferation of scandals and inefficiency, we can no longer avoid asking:
– why after so many years, people are so unhappy with their politicians?
– why people cannot find worthy politicians?
– why even the most despised politicians, guilty of having created the most serious problems, manage to retain their office for decades?
– why the political propaganda becomes increasingly expensive and goading?
– how come citizens feel increasingly powerless and frustrated?
– why a policy replacement does not happen?
We must therefore conclude that the universal suffrage, first milestone towards real democracy, has remained an isolated stone and, paradoxically, has been exploited so far by the leaders of apparent democracies to consolidate their power over people.

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5.c.4 – Equality at all costs?

July 26, 2010 — Riccardo Sabellotti - Giacinto Sabellotti

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Equality at all costs?

In the previous section we saw how our policy moves towards a social degeneration ever more accelerated. If the objective was, as still is, to improve the quality of life of citizens through the reduction of social differences between them, then we have to restart from the analysis of that objective.
This entails first of all, as usual, to clarify terminology: equality to be pursued is that of cultural and economic opportunities, not that one which is synonymous of forced flattening.
The men are not all equal and it would be a trouble if they were, because the evolutionary success of human beings is based on the great variety, therefore on the genetic differences between different individuals; there are most eclectic and less eclectic men, more strong and less strong, more sensitive and less sensitive, and so on in an endless list, but nobody has all the virtues and even if there was someone who had all of them, still he could not possibly do without the others (especially in today’s world where we always tend to greater specialization and a specialist in each subject can no longer exist).
Therefore, we must be aware and proud of our diversity, knowing that this is our winning weapon; we must strive to make the most of our genetic and cultural differences, not suppress them, because that would mean to go against our nature. No one, speaking of equality, intends to eliminate these differences made by nature, but only those created by man and then imposed by society, including racial, sexual and religious discrimination etc… Trying to remove the natural and inevitable differences, then, means to try to flatten the men; it does not mean to fight discrimination but to go against nature. We can distinguish between natural and artificial differences, and are the second ones only those to be discarded.
An efficient society must understand and then enhance the qualities of each, and ensure that the individual has the right personal and economic rewards for the role he plays in the common interest.
Once realized that people by their nature are not all equal and should play more varied roles, what is the point of talking about equality? The answer seems obvious, but in fact there is an equality to be pursued and defended at all costs, this is the real target: equal opportunities, which are determined by the society where we live. To enhance the potential of our diversity, it is indeed necessary an environment that allows everyone to be able to express his qualities; this with great satisfaction of the individual, but also with inevitable collective benefit. This is after all, a component of the previously examined rule of the benefit, in which all members of the society should benefit from belonging to it; it is in this respect that we should all be truly equal.
The differences to be eliminated are the social ones and it is obvious how they are supported by the well known root problems: ignorance, misinformation and social fragmentation.
Once understood that universal suffrage is not the goal but the means to achieve a society based on equal opportunities, we cannot but conclude, after sixty years of experimentation, that this instrument alone does not work. To implement universal suffrage without a system of self-management adapted to large numbers is like going into a jungle with a rifle loaded with blank cartridges, but believing to have real ones.

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5.c.5 – Are there other ways?

July 27, 2010 — Riccardo Sabellotti - Giacinto Sabellotti

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Are there other ways?

When a model does not work, it is natural to try to replace it with another one already known. We have already seen how to confuse the current system with democracy is a serious mistake; it will lead to erroneously infer that democracy does not work and then hope the return of dictatorial models, although they also will never achieve the good of the community.
The truth is that the instrument needed is the one that will lead to democracy, not its opposite, but it is an instrument that does not exist yet. So what? Did we not seen that one of the main resources of the human being is to use a variety of instruments by the same imagined and created? We have built flying and underwater machines, we can instantly communicate with people at the antipodes, we have computers with computational possibilities impossible for us, we use robots that work in conditions impassable for men, why then should we be discouraged by facing the need to design, test and implement an effective democratic tool?
The important thing was to focus on the real problem: at this point we can be optimistic, a solution will be found!

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5.c.6 – The tripartite powers is really the foundation of democracy?

July 28, 2010 — Riccardo Sabellotti - Giacinto Sabellotti

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The tripartite powers is really the foundation of democracy?

In the eighteenth century, with the rise of modern apparent democracies, it has been designed a system that provided the tripartition of the basic powers of the State into legislative, administrative and judicial, and entrusted such powers to separate and independent bodies. These powers are in fact ways in which the State may impose its authority to the citizen: for this reason they were so feared by the first democrats in the Western world. If one man or one institution had taken control of such coercive means, although democratically elected, could easily turn into a dictator. It was therefore thought to share and to confer such authority to other institutions, but it is obvious that if these institutions are not controlled by the public will be controlled by others and will not be too difficult for these latter to agree between themselves to the detriment of democracy and of people. More than the foundation of democracy, therefore, the tripartite powers is a fundamental protection.
The so-called fundamental powers, which together represent the power of an absolute sovereign, must always be kept separate and independent in the society, with one obvious exception: the same people that control all three should be the only link between them, otherwise some other entity would rival the authority of the population. Anyone can easily verify that today, with the parliamentary system, in general the public does not have a serious control over any of the three, indeed people are not able to make a real political change nor within the parliament or the government or even of the leaders of the Judiciary system.
It is good at this point to make some clarification on the three powers, as in common parlance it is easy to make confusion: how can they be independent if the first makes the laws, the second applies them and the third judges on the basis of them? It seems that from the first depend the other two. According to what we have said, what needs to be separated is their ability to impose and harass the population, i.e. their authority; for the legislative power we do not therefore intend, in this context, the general ability to enact laws, but that of establishing rules that directly affect the lives of citizens. The population is afraid of new taxes, of the raising of the retirement age or of the reduction in the protection of workers: the rules that require the lights for lighting the car plate or those to determine the frequency of maintenance of lifts, also being technically laws must be seen as different types of laws, placed outside of our discourse. Similarly it is feared that the administrative power is not the management of the environment or foreign affairs, but the authority of police to impose emergency measures restricting personal freedom, thus the power to dictate orders. We must therefore take care to entrust to separate entities the exercise of such authority, and not the normal legislative, administrative and judicial activity which in their performance are inextricably linked.

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5.c.7 – Are we looking for a representative or a leader?

July 29, 2010 — Riccardo Sabellotti - Giacinto Sabellotti

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Are we looking for a representative or a leader?

Our nature leads us to be commanded and not to be represented, to have a leader then and not a representative, but our nature has also selected us to live in a village made up by no more than a hundred people: how can our nature conciliate with the modern states been formed by millions of people? How is it possible to have respect for the leaders without knowing them? How can we acquire an identity and a national pride without a real community?
In our opinion this is the way to go: if we respond to these questions in harmony with our nature, then we can begin to design our prototype of democratic instrument.
The modern village, although it is designed to give immediate benefits to those who take part in it, can also be a viable training for democratic culture. The village is made up of similar people who have freely chosen to join and can freely decide to divide (not only due to conflicts, but also and especially to grow), people more or less interchangeable on the basic concepts, who choose their representative depending on their availability and elects a leader, when necessary, according to esteem gained from direct knowledge. The villages are represented by a permanent delegate to ensure continuity in relations with other villages and this is accompanied by an expert of the subject to be discussed; the various levels of the federation of villages lead to the innovative concentric model already discussed above and thus villages may be the cells of a new social fabric, the components of a new structure: the democratic structure.

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5.c.8 – Who wouldn’t like to have a relative in the parliament?

July 30, 2010 — Riccardo Sabellotti - Giacinto Sabellotti

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Who wouldn’t like to have a relative in the parliament?

An old popular saying states that “there should be a doctor in every family.” Considering the sensitive nature of the role of the doctor, we would always rely on a person on whom we have the utmost confidence, that is at least a relative or a friend. Something similar is true of a political representative and it is no coincidence that when a person has a relative or friend in parliament, another popular saying that says “that person has a saint in heaven. ” That saying tells a lot about how we see the new social order: the parliament is not the center of the concentric system, it is rather the summit of a pyramid, a pyramid so high that the summit is located above the clouds in a sort modern Olympus.
Who can participate in this paradise is therefore venerated as a saint, but in a system where parliamentarians are a few hundreds, while the population is made up of many tens of millions of people, is mathematical that only a few fortunate persons have a relative or friend in parliament. In this context, the problem is not finding enlightened parliamentary governing impartially, simply because this is impossible, the objective to reach is that of a new system allowing to confide in someone close, with whom is possible to confront and to whom address for our needs, to whom lending support when needed and upon whom exercise the right control, in short, a system that is an extension of the concentric pattern already described in a previous chapter.

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5.c.9 – Who should be the first ring?

July 31, 2010 — Riccardo Sabellotti - Giacinto Sabellotti

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Who should be the first ring?

Let’s try together to see if our model of concentric democracy is applicable to a city or an entire nation (recalling that first we need to disseminate the necessary democratic culture through the experience of modern villages).
If we want to create a truly democratic structure, it is obvious that the first ring should be composed by all citizens of full age, i.e. by the people, who in a democracy holds sovereignty. The concentric structure is one of the tools that this structure uses to organize and self-manage; in particular, this tool is used to make decisions collectively, and, according to human nature, this occurs through dialogue between acquaintances, relatives or friends; we all indeed love to talk and ask for advice to the persons we most care for and trust. The  Kings have always had ranks of advisers and experts, why then the sovereign citizen should do without it? So to give a valuable contribution to the democratic management, a team effort will be automatically required. The ring is to be divided then in very small groups of well-knit friends, which in fact already exist, but with the new system they will take a key role in the society that is institutionally recognized. And if a person does not want to deal with policy or the topic of the day? He can automatically avoid it, delegating all the others or one person in particular. The problem is not that some decide for others, this is what already happens, the population accepts this principle and indeed, in some cases, even relies on a dictatorship just to have someone who decides in its place; we must once again remind our nature: we are social animals, selected to organize in groups and rely on a leader, there is nothing more natural that we rely on another, the real problem is who should we choose and according to what criteria.
We already know that to vote a stranger following the TV advertising or similar means to renounce to democracy and is also known that skilled unscrupulous speakers can handle the crowds obscuring who has better reasons, but less skills. We can add that it is very dangerous to judge a representative on the basis of educational qualifications, professional achievements, the capital owned, the income, the fact that has no criminal records or a combination of these or other factors, because it would be very misleading, just a waste of time. Each of these criteria could select the most capable and most reliable only in the presence of a context that ensures real equal opportunities for citizens, because only then the degrees would establish who are the most studious, the success would reward the most deserving, the wealth would belong to the most capable, etc. .. In a context where everything is distorted due to lack of true democracy, in which degrees can be so bought by a kilo, in which the professional and entrepreneurial successes are ever more due to political support, in which wealth means lack of scruples, where the criminal record is kept untouched if one can afford the best lawyers, or through targeted amnesties and pardons, these criteria would be useless. Finally, there are no educational or professional achievements that ensure the most important virtue for a representative, which is his reliability. The problem of choice is instead immediately resolved in a small group: no outsiders, no advertising, no crowds that can be manipulated; perhaps the choice is limited, but certainly is much more reliable and this is the most important thing.
The first ring therefore must be divided into small groups, mainly to select a representative to whom listing our discomforts, talk about it or even ask for advice. Most of the population in fact, although suffering hardships of various kinds, often does not know the real cause of these and even the real problems to be solved; not knowing how to act, people is in search of someone who acts in their place, but now do it by choosing among perfect strangers who emerge thanks to the support of election campaigns that cost hundreds of millions of Euros. If we are to achieve genuine democracy, we should not encourage all people to daily take care of politics, it would be against nature and also would never work;, it should be rather created a system allowing a real representation, which can be easily obtained in small groups through direct acquaintance.
The first step for solving a problem is to be aware of its existence and know that this is manifested through a hardship. This first step occurs spontaneously in the first ring, when common people speak of their problems to people nearby, particularly to those on which they rely.

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5.c.10 – How small a group should be?

August 1, 2010 — Riccardo Sabellotti - Giacinto Sabellotti

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How small a group should be?

In each group people talk, propose ideas, ask for advice, so autonomously the will of the people starts to form, a fundamental prerequisite of authentic democracy. This activity is conducted in the most natural way in two or three, maximum four people; with a higher number a real assembly will start to form, which requires a minimum of discipline, of organization and commitment, to allow all participants to express their opinion without hindering each other. Similar meetings did not have problems in the working groups that we met in the modern village, but these groups were formed by persons particularly interested in a particular subject or a certain activity and then gathered spontaneously. The groups we are now talking about should be fit for the entire population, even the most disinterested, then challenging meetings should be avoided and the social channels that already exist should be maximized. It is then easy to deal with a subject in two or three people during routine visits or, without moving from home and with more time to reflect, address it in an organized group on the Internet, which is simple and functional with a dozen people. Finally, nothing prevents to combine the two systems on a website showing virtual ideas emerged in a dialogue at the bar during a break from working: in this way an even greater number of people might participate in a discussion.
We have, however, to recall that these groups are not reserved only to those who are motivated by special interests, they also must protect the common interest and within them everyone has the opportunity to be appointed as representative of all others, so it’s good that the participants are related by friendship and esteem and that confidence reigns in the group. But how many people we know so well that we can choose as our representatives, or be chosen by them as such? Again we would find ourselves in front of numbers like four, five, maximum seven or eight. It is natural that we can receive full trust from a very limited number of acquaintances and this should be seen as an advantage, since this way is easy to be close to our representative to support or control him as required.
If we first decide that the right number of people to form these groups is five, we can easily imagine to divide the first ring in parts of five people, but this would be very difficult and impractical to implement in reality for several reasons:
– the choice of the group to which belonging must be free, but a fixed number would mean having to be satisfied with the remaining vacant posts
– the number of citizens is constantly changing: every day several people come of age and every minute many people die
– the bonds of friendship often link groups of higher number that they rightly would not divide
– not all are interested or feel prepared on the same subjects so we need to provide that not always all participate in the discussions; to ensure a minimum of involvement in some cases, it would be more appropriate to have a number higher than five, though not higher enough that a meeting in which everyone wanted to participate becomes chaotic.
Therefore, it is physiologically necessary some flexibility and it seems to be appropriate a number variable between five and nine because it is clear that a group of ten can be easily divided into two groups of five. This is an agreement to balance the different needs, we may also make the number fluctuate between six and twelve, the important thing is not to reach numbers too large and that there is little numerical difference between the various groups so that the various representatives have roughly the same dignity in the second ring.
In this way it is possible that members enter or leave the group without compromising the entire system and only in special cases divisions or merging will be needed.

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5.c.11 – What is the role of representatives?

August 2, 2010 — Riccardo Sabellotti - Giacinto Sabellotti

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What is the role of representatives?

The groups of the first ring should communicate with each other the hardships they share, but also the ideas, projects and perhaps the first solutions that arise from their activities: these must be collected and compared, and then further discussed; these tasks belong to their representatives.
It is good to remember that there are two ways to represent someone:
– to accurately report the decision taken by delegators
– to make the decision instead of delegators.
It is obvious that it is the delegator, in our case the group, who chooses how it wants to be represented, according to the issue dealt with or to the context.
Returning to the graphical representation of the concentric democracy, we can note that the outer ring has changed its appearance: no longer a circle made up of individuals, but a ring composed of a smaller number of basic groups (which henceforth we will simply call Groups) for each of which we will have a representative in the second ring.
To be designated as representatives by four relatives or friends in a Group, it is clear that no expensive nor irritating campaigns are needed, nor frequent and boring elections; just a simple expression of will is needed, and as such may be changed at any time, as we are already accustomed to do to choose, for instance, a family doctor.
The State has already associated us with a code that uniquely identifies us; to create an institutional database to manage the composition of our Groups of the first ring and their representatives is truly a child’s play that can be achieved at virtually no cost. Every citizen could then access that database and change with the utmost comfort their preference for the representative (according to the delegations already received by the person chosen) or the Group through an interface very simple and intuitive to use through the computer or dedicated workstations made available at municipal offices or other public institutions.
With this first step of the new system, 80% of the population could ignore politics, but would have at home his representative, i.e. a person who, besides being worthy of the utmost trust, would also be available daily to confront on the priorities of the problems to solve, problems that actually he also lives together with the persons he represents. It should be noted once again that not everyone has the time, the passion or the capacity for being interested in politics, however, with the Groups we avoid that people are marginalized from politics, because everyone has the opportunity to contribute if he wants.

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5.c.12 – How to organize the second ring?

August 3, 2010 — Riccardo Sabellotti - Giacinto Sabellotti

12-secondo-anello-rid

How to organize the second ring?

Nature teaches us that when we find a formula that works, we must repeat it in order to exploit it as much as possible, just think of the sexual reproduction, the chewing of food or the stereoscopic vision. Then, we must humbly learn the proper instruction and continue on our path.
We have already implemented some basic evolutionary strategies: the cells of the first ring in fact grow up to nine members then split into two identical cells made up of five people (reproduction by fission); the members of the cell attach to one of them the task to represent them (specialization), and these representatives, we can call trustee, will in turn join to form a new body (collaboration). These new groups will be composed of people more motivated than the previous ones and their participation will be more active, just like it happens in the working groups of the modern village, and they will play a role similar to that of ancient family clans.
For this reason we’ll call Clan the Groups gathered together in the second ring through their representatives, which group will take the name of the Clan that it represent. We can immediately see that now their similarity with the clans of the past is even more apparent, because the former are formed by several Groups as the latter were formed by different families. Previously, the working groups had been limited to ten units due to the practical needs of management of the meetings, but this problem did not exist in the past, because the family clans were not democratic institutions and they could bring together only the heads of the family, as well as in the Clan the representatives are brought together. There is an almost perfect similarity between the Clan and the old families, whereas the latter remain the most natural form of human association together with the family and the tribal village; this is exactly what we wanted: a structure democratic and respectful of human nature.
In order to keep this similarity as much as possible, a future representative of the Clan must be very close to its delegators of the first ring, it is necessary therefore that he represents a whole that is not numerous, just from 15 to 30 persons. To comply with the limits that we have just set, in the second ring there will be Clans of three to five people.
In this way, all people belonging to the Groups will regularly meet their representative and also their indirect representative who often will be even be relatives. This means that with the new democratic structure about 95% of the population can delegate the management of public affairs to a relative or friend and can do so with the utmost naturalness; neither meetings nor votes are needed, or minutes or other special formalities; the delegate shouldn’t even have a particular age or a particular qualification, or a particular training curriculum: in other words 95% of the population may appoint a representative they prefer according to their personal criteria and may not be concerned about the public management without giving up protecting their own interests as they will have delegated someone close.
In such a system is not necessary to establish a minimum duration of the office of trustee or delegate, nor a time-limit; it is not even necessary to set a given number of meetings because they would be a group of people who usually meet, and who are then in a sort of permanent meeting where the delegate will always know what are his group needs.

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5.c.13 – The political structure starts in the third ring?

August 4, 2010 — Riccardo Sabellotti - Giacinto Sabellotti

13-struttura-rid

The political structure starts in the third ring?

Once you reached the third ring, the representatives of the Clan will once again gather in groups to form a Village, called so because it reflects the natural form of human association which is the tribal village. It is the largest structure within which everyone knows the others quite well, in which we can then take advantage of direct acquaintance, but already at this level it is unlikely that members of the group are people who usually meet, and therefore we must start to establish rules of behavior to be used as standards to ensure efficient cooperation and to allow, if necessary, an easy shift from one group to another. Although the group members, not being strangers, will reach in a short time an adequate degree of confidence, it is good to address this problem immediately to avoid a recurrence magnified with successive groups, which are obviously much larger and their representatives will initially be strangers. If we say the various Clans are formed on average by 28 people, from the union of six Clans will be formed a Village of 168 members, about double of an ancient tribal village. In order not to go too distant from our nature, therefore we fix as 170 the maximum number of members of a village.
The groups of the third link do not resemble either to families, or to family assemblies: they are the first official bodies of the new social order. These groups represent a Village which is only a modern variant of the villages presented in a previous chapter, but it is appropriate to highlight some differences: remember that the modern village is a whole of people who decide to organize privately to try to resolve the root problems and thus improve the quality of their lives already in the current political system, while the village referred to in this paragraph is an entity of the new democratic structure, much like the first, but made up of one more ring, in order to include and also protect those who do not have a great spirit of participation.
An official body must have well defined functions and the task of the Village is to compare and discuss the problems felt by its members, in order to arrive o a correct and common definition of the same. We expect therefore that at the third ring it is achieved at least the second step towards the solution of a problem: its grading. This work is predominantly done by the trustees of the second and third ring, but remember that each ring is linked to the previous one and that there representatives are a liaison between the various groups, usually are the coordinators and spokespersons, they rarely decide independently for the others. That is the basis for establishing common rules in the assembly of the Village, but for carrying out this work, no particular formality or special structures are needed: just remember that the members of the assembly are only five or six and that aggregations, while being free and having the internet available, in all likelihood will also follow a criterion of physical proximity; then the official meetings, when necessary, will take place at the home or the office of a member or maybe at the restaurant.

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5.c.14 – Should we also innovate the concept of official assembly?

August 5, 2010 — Riccardo Sabellotti - Giacinto Sabellotti

14-assemblea-rid

Should we also innovate the concept of official assembly?

Terms of the meeting, agendas that cannot be modified, assemblies to which participate wearing a suit, majority vote, minutes with ritual formulas: what a bore! What would we say to our kids of “the generation I” that are growing? That we couldn’t do anything better? Once again let’s roll up our sleeves and think together: once defined which is the function of the Village, will be the members thereof, adult and responsible persons, who will manage to carry out this function at their best; the sense of responsibility is automatically triggered when one is nominated by his family and his friends, i.e. from people one has to look in the eyes every day, while the enthusiasm grows when one covers an institutional role which rewards can compensate for the daily hardships.
Anyone who has attended a meeting organized from above (a condominium, a school council, a working meeting etc..) can confirm that it is boring and often an inconclusive experience; the self-organization of a group of peers to achieve a purpose is completely different:
– no official summons to be notified by registered letters with advice of receipt are needed, simply because often there will be no need for a physical meeting; the debate on the problems to be defined can be made in a network with a forum dedicated to the village (in a democratic structure it is obvious that the entire territory is covered by high speed connection lines and that members of the village, having a role of public utility, have free access to the internet) and then each member may make proposals or comment on those of others (even those of other villages) in the spare time at his sole discretion
– no agendas that cannot be modified, except by a new date and with all the necessary formalities, are necessary simply because it would make no sense. Each member can enter in the forum the topic that he prefers and if the other members will comment that, it means that it was worthy of debate, otherwise they will not.
– normally to summon an assembly is not needed, because we saw that the work may take place on the web; the members of a village will naturally consolidate their relationship by personally meeting, but it is preferable that they meet all together around a beautiful table.
– usually no majority voting is needed, because in a small group of members familiar to each other will tend to reach unanimity; note that consensus does not mean that all think the same way, but to converge towards a common position, albeit starting from different views; when a group must often use  voting, it means that is not a cohesive group and it is better that it winds up.
– no minutes are needed with formulas of old notary rite e.g.: “on the 24th  (twenty-fourth) of the month of September, 2008 (two thousand eight), at the offices located in …, the Assembly meets .. . duly convened by registered letter with acknowledgment of receipt sent on …, provided that all the attendants … “ and so on in the general alienation. The result of the discussions in the forum is stored and, upon reaching a common position on a given topic, it will be summarized in a writing so that it can advance to the fourth ring.

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5.c.15 – Can we overcome the concepts of hierarchy and control?

August 6, 2010 — Riccardo Sabellotti - Giacinto Sabellotti

15-gerarchia-rid

Can we overcome the concepts of hierarchy and control?

Our cultural evolution has created systems based on authoritarian hierarchies, on suffocating controls and on the consequent heavy penalties; they are systems as widespread as to become normal at all levels: in families, workplaces and society in general; this tradition is so rooted as to be adopted and passed by our religions, becoming even stronger.
The natural aversion to such systems has led to a gradual dissolution of the same, but since in the meantime no alternative models could be found, it has also led to a gradual disintegration of every social institution: teachers mocked and insulted by their pupils, although adolescents, doctors reported by patients, parents entirely dominated by their children etc..; in this chaotic progression the demand for more authority, more control and stricter penalties grows exponentially, in short we feel the need to go back. We must then realize that we haven’t lost a good model, but simply we have not replaced it with a new and efficient model.
The modern village, the human coral and the democratic structure Endeavour through the application of the concentric democracy, to implement a new model that seeks to replace the hierarchy imposed from above with a shared organization(which is not a flattening or repudiation of the different roles that people necessarily have to cover) and wants to replace the exasperation of controls (also regularly evaded) with a responsible personal pride, with minimal pyramidal controls and replacing them with direct responsibility (self-control) and collaboration (peer monitoring) . In a system of rings there are no vertices, each circle embraces and circumscribes the inner one,  at the same time helping and limiting it; we have already said that in this system the needs and problems of people, all equal on the same ring, converge toward the center and find solutions when centralizing; such solutions are then radiated outwards with a kind of pulse that will keep our society alive and will make it grow. Let us build our model.

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5.c.16 – What happens beyond the village?

August 7, 2010 — Riccardo Sabellotti - Giacinto Sabellotti

16-oltre-rid

What happens beyond the village?

Considering a population, however large, even many millions of people, we can apply the system of rings to break up and organize it in Villages. Following the same scheme, each Village will send a representative to the center, forming the fourth ring; at this stage we must note a few things:
– the representatives of the fourth ring are less than 1% of the total population because we can assume that the Villages on average exceed the 100 units
– in a group of villages many may not know each other directly, this means that everyone will know the representative of his Village, but could not know that of others; then when electing one representative to be sent to the fifth ring this is unrelated to many, then the connection of knowledge within the group and its representative will be lost. The fourth ring is the last where we’ll certainly find a person of our village, then known to us.
– once the link of direct knowledge is missed, the only numerical limit in the formation of groups is the need to form an assembly of representatives that is easily manageable and functional, that is made up of a number of members not exceeding fifteen, henceforth we fix then, that the groups can vary from seven to fourteen members, but, for ease of calculation and exposure, we’ll assume that they are on average composed of ten units.
At the fourth ring thus groups will gather ten Villages, overcoming the thousand members and then send their representatives to the next. At the fifth ring all the considerations made for the fourth become even more valid: the number of members was reduced to one tenth compared to the fourth and the possibility of meeting strangers is higher. The relationship with the first ring become formal because of the loss of direct knowledge, and from the fifth on the rings lose their family and informal features, so we’ll call them institutional rings.
Although the population of the fifth ring is less than a thousandth of that of the first, if the original population is of many millions of citizens, it will be anyway made up of thousands of people. It will therefore be necessary to repeat the usual procedure by creating a sixth ring, then a seventh, etc. .. This will make smaller and smaller rings to achieve one of less than fifteen people. At first glance it may seem that to achieve this we need a large number of subsequent stages, but we can easily calculate that in order to saturate a system with 11 rings are needed more than 10 billion people, about double the world population. This means that on any nation or group of nations we should apply the concentric system, it will take no more than ten steps. This calculation was done also considering the informal rings, i.e. the first four, which with no doubt don’t involve a cumbersome bureaucracy; if we consider only those institutional, the possible steps are reduced to seven.
Reached the penultimate ring, this will be made of about a hundred members who will be coordinated from the last central ring, it is up to them then the task of translating the contributions from all the structure into laws and concrete policy goals, making the final choices.

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5.c.17 – Are the tasks divided among the different rings?

August 8, 2010 — Riccardo Sabellotti - Giacinto Sabellotti

17-compiti-rid

Are the tasks divided among the different rings?

If the first ring expresses through the discomfort the perception of a collective problem, the second and the third are responsible for the defining the same in the best way. Doing this the will of the people, often uncertain and confused, becomes conscious and determined; we believe it is right that this process takes place inside the village, where everyone knows everyone else, and then each one contributes to the formation of that collective will.
At the fourth ring, the next step must be taken, that is to evaluate and select the issue or assess its priority and its possibility of being resolved internally. The selection of the problem, as we have seen is not a trivial activity, it is indeed of paramount importance not to waste time and energy; if it is preferable or even necessary that the solution to a given problem is delegated to a larger structure, it is good do so immediately to focus on problems within our reach.
The fifth ring therefore must carry out the task of studying the first solutions to problems by identifying precise objectives to be achieved. To accomplish this task it will of course possible to collect the proposed solution from the outer rings, because it is very likely that out of thousands of members someone has already had some good idea.
To benefit from the synergies that can be exploited at national level, it is important already in the fourth ring that the work of various groups and of their underlying Villages is shared. The assessment of how a problem is felt in a context wider than ours is the key to choose the timing and alliances with which to address it and then give it a proper priority.
The sharing of this work will be very simple, it will be enough to publish on the network the summaries already developed by the various groups, synthesis already developed for internal use that will not cause any extra effort, but will yield great benefit to each other.
Finally, we note that the comparison and affinity between established priorities is also a good criterion to form the coalitions of the fifth ring, since it is almost certain that they are formed by people who initially do not know each other.
At the sixth ring, we expect that the definition of solutions, namely how to achieve the targets set, should be completed; to the subsequent rings remains to compare the different solutions, evaluate them and select them and then pass them to the next ring. Whatever the number of rings is, it is up to the last two to take the final decisions: according to the different case, the proposals will be voted on to penultimate ring (largest) and the votes will be collected and validated by the last one (performing coordination functions), or the central ring will simply receive the information from the previous and will direct vote the best proposals.
Finally we want to highlight the usefulness of the rings after the sixth whose selective work makes it possible to lighten the workload of the last two rings which will have only a few alternatives to choose from, only two or three. Another factor that makes it possible to avoid an excessive workload in the last ring is the fact that the groups of the seventh ring represent already more than one million people, as it is contained in a current province or a city of considerable size, and have themselves human, cultural and economic resources to deal locally with most of the problems.

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5.c.18 – Do we need the assistance of specialists?

August 9, 2010 — Riccardo Sabellotti - Giacinto Sabellotti

18-specialista-rid

Do we need the assistance of specialists?

Within a village there is a considerable cultural diversity, being made up of over one hundred people, and any issue everyone seeks advice from those who know more. When the various Clans send their representatives to the Village, they should also take account of their technical expertise regarding the subject to deal with. Since there is no reason to always send the same representative, they may also change it depending on the agenda, or send two or three specialists in different fields that will alternate at the meeting according to each issue discussed.
If this way to proceed does not involve any problems within the Village, as in a Clan the expert’s choice is immediate, going to larger structures things will be more complicate. In fact, in more internal rings indeed, the assemblies are made up of strangers who, if replaced continuously, will remain such, there wouldn’t be continuity in their work and, even worse, they could not competently choose a common representative, compromising the entire system.
On the other hand, the purpose of the concentric structure is to exploit cultural resources of the entire population by selecting the best ideas, therefore a specialized training is essential. Therefore, in order to ensure stability and efficiency to the system, each Village will send in the fourth ring a stable representative with coordination functions, who will maintain relations with the other Villages, and one or more experts who in their field will be confronted with their colleagues. The same system will be applied by all the subsequent rings. From a single representative we pass then to a team that presumably will grow in the more internal rings, together with the growth of needs and the variety of subjects. This will also help to address a number of different problems at the same time.

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5.c.19 – How is the government formed?

August 10, 2010 — Riccardo Sabellotti - Giacinto Sabellotti

19-governo-rid

How is the government formed?

Once  reached the last two rings, as we have said, they must determine what are the policy objectives at national level in their final form. This is reflected in laws applicable to the entire community (especially by the external legislative ring) and in guidelines for the executive body (drafted by the internal legislative ring). To highlight this important function we’ll call these rings Legislative Center, within which dozens of teams coming from the former ring, each equipped with high-level specialists, work.
These experts are chosen with the usual system by the colleagues from the former ring, therefore they follow an elective channel separate for each specialty. Legislators generally have both the technical expertise on the field that they have to deal with and mediation skills for collaborating with colleagues in the same field and with those of their team. The ability of mediation is especially important for the role of representative coordinator to whom is also entrusted the safeguard of coherence with the popular will of people he represents.
At this point the problem arises of choosing those to whom entrust the task of implementing the political programs set by the Legislative Center, i.e. how to form the executive body equivalent to the current government. Even in this case, these are specialized tasks, then a team to collect the necessary skills will have to be formed. Considering the similarities with the teams existing in the concentric structure it appears immediate to entrust them, with the usual procedure, the choice of ministers of what we’ll call Executive Center. Just like the members of teams in the Legislative Center are selected, the candidates for the office of minister will be selected too. Those candidates, according to the functions entrusted to them, should have the following qualities:
– technical competence, they must be experts in the sector they must deal with
– organizational competence, therefore they must be experienced in management
– ability to mediate, then they must be balanced people, wise, able to intercede between the parties to reach an agreement.
But how many people have these qualities? To select for each ring such wonders may seem very difficult, however, for these cases nature has provided us with two basic strategies which are very effective: the specialization and cooperation. For not giving up any of these qualities and make sure they are all present in every ministry, we can set that each group of the penultimate ring chooses a list of people, so that each of them presents a different quality. By this criterion specialized and well-assorted groups are formed, made of an experienced management minister and two assistants (a technician and a mediator), who should ensure a high degree of efficiency.
In order to reduce as much as possible the risk that, as we are witnessing today, in the selection of ministers would overlap interests other than those of the nation, it seems appropriate to introduce a system of drawing lots for each three people group: in this way to protect a private interest it will not be enough to try to promote a corrupt candidate, but it would be necessary to try to bribe everyone first, because everyone can be drawn, and this is obviously more difficult. The draw also has not problems for the technical competence because with the concentric system they all will be automatically ultra-selected, and that just because we are talking about directors and not of sports champions, they must be prepared to do the job and not to win competitions. So if by chance it happens that the worst group among those available is drawn, they will still be able to do a good job.
It should be stressed that the office of minister is held by one person only, the expert in management, which holds total responsibility for their own area with no alibi as he personally responds to citizens. The management office is made up of a list of three persons, but the technical expert and the expert in mediation mainly have an advisory or however subordinate role.
It is also to be reminded, finally, that the ministers, although carefully selected and then up to the office received, can always rely on the work done in the different rings with respect to their field of expertise and will be able to do so thanks to modern technology which enables the creation of indexed archives, archives accessible at all times and with great ease, with different query methods etc…

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5.c.20 – How to maintain the separation of powers?

August 11, 2010 — Riccardo Sabellotti - Giacinto Sabellotti

20-separazione-rid

How to maintain the separation of powers?

To protect democracy while maintaining the separation of the three fundamental powers it is necessary that nobody, except the first ring, can control all three. The Legislative Center is controlled directly by the third from last ring: this ring therefore will  have no authority to interfere with the work of the Executive or the Judicial authorities. This objective can be easily achieved, considering that from the fourth link each category of experts elects through the usual procedure the experts of the next ring; each category thus follows a path of election separate from the others and the same will happen to the Executive and the Judicial categories. The paths of those who carry out the three forms of authority of the State will be then completely separated, as well as their respective functions are. For the same reason also the professional contacts between different authorities should be limited to the minimum necessary and subject to special regulation.
It should be noted that the Judicial Authority shall be managed and that it includes not only the judges, as well as the Ministry of Health is not only formed by doctors but also nurses, accountants, biologists, chemists and who knows how many more categories. The Ministry of Justice cannot be considered as separate by the Judicial Authority: even today it is a single system for the judicial activity; it follows that the ministry, of which the Judges are a key component, still must be separated from Government in order to maintain the separation of powers.

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5.c.21 – Would new problems arise with the population growth?

August 12, 2010 — Riccardo Sabellotti - Giacinto Sabellotti

21-popolazione-rid

Would new problems arise with the population growth?

The concentric system is such that each ring is strictly controlled (and supported) by the previous one. This system is an extension of the modern village which can be seen as a simple structure with two rings. Considering that the village democracy is based on direct knowledge of the members and on the low number of participants in meetings, we can doubt that it can lose its quality by applying this type of organization to millions of people.
Let’s look then at these qualities and try to see if they can be maintained increasing the number of rings:

– there is no need for expensive advertising campaigns for elections
– there are no lists of candidates imposed by the parties, then there is full freedom to vote
– all belong to the same political structure, therefore the parties are no longer needed as political organizations
– individual activities can be decentralized or centralized as needed with ease and flexibility
– the structure is able to stimulate and raise the political participation of the whole population and with it an
– enormous amount of human and economic resources which are currently unused. The citizens are involved in the definition of political programs and do not have to choose the projects of others
– the simplicity of the system provides equal political opportunities and thus also facilitates the others (related to employment, education, health etc…).
– everyone knows directly his own representatives
– direct control of Representatives.
We can note that the first six characteristics can be kept without difficulty and especially the flexibility and the better exploitation of resources should be even stronger, while for the latter two things are different. In fact, in a large structure everyone knows the representatives of the first four rings, those informal, but not those of the institutional rings. Although within each ring everyone knows and controls his direct representative, we cannot ignore the fact that for the ordinary citizen the institutional representatives are strangers and that he has no direct influence on them.
As for the direct control, things are even worse: if a representative of the fourth institutional ring behaved very badly, the ordinary citizen should agree with the members of his group and ask to their direct representative to replace him, repeating the operation with his representative and so on for seven rings. This is already a process that seems long, but if a representative of the third ring does not accept such a request, that we believe right, from another group, what will we do? Would we start a similar procedure to oust him for having saved the other? Maybe until then he had always behaved well and this action would seem excessive; and if this occurred in an informal ring, would we dismiss an acquaintance of ours because we wanted to condemn a stranger? Clearly, ring after ring, a sort of protective barrier will form that would make the representatives more independent from the authority of the first ring as they approach the center, and the same is also true for administrators.
Experience shows that if citizens are unable to enforce their authority, their interests will sooner or later be ignored. So if the concentric system on the one hand may work very well to gather ideas and to refine both the solution of problems and the political program, on the other it is unable to secure control of the citizen on its representatives when the population grows. Although our system has many advantages over the current one, there is a risk that, just like the parliamentary system, when applied to with millions of people loses the ability to be democratic.
To avoid such a risk we must complement our democratic structure with appropriate control systems, tools that allow the first ring to exert its authority over all the others.

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CONCETTI IN PILLOLE
pillola
n. 49 – POSSIAMO GESTIRE LA NOSTRA CULTURA?

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5.c.22 – Is a direct control possible?

August 13, 2010 — Riccardo Sabellotti - Giacinto Sabellotti

22-controllo-rid

Is a direct control possible?

Previously we concluded that in the current system, the control of citizens over their own representatives is in fact practically zero, while that on ministers and judges is non-existent, not just in fact but also formally, not having these offices the need for a direct legitimacy from the population. This occurs for several reasons, such as the belief that the parliamentarians are true representatives and that consequently can, indeed should, control on behalf of the people even the executive power, that the parties have the honesty not to exert undue pressure on judiciary etc. .. These problems in the concentric system simply do not exist, but we came to the conclusion that it is not enough to have eliminated the old problem: the people, when they deem it necessary, shall have the right tools to impose their authority, otherwise the democracy ceases to exist. This is a necessary requirement for any system that intends to be democratic.
To this end, in the forms of indirect government based on representatives, it is possible that people operates a “political replacement”, i.e. that replaces a number of important political figures that have disappointed them, having betrayed their expectations or trust. In principle, also with the concentric system a political replacement is possible but, as we know, it is too difficult to achieve and the more something is difficult, the less we are free to do it. We have also seen, in a previous example, as a monarch who could be dismissed by his people is no longer a monarch, being no longer the ultimate authority.
The experience of parliamentary systems teaches us that people have great difficulty in recognizing the valid representatives, but have many less to identify those who betray their trust. With our structure we have solved the problem of selecting good representatives, but not to eliminate any cases of system failure. It therefore seems appropriate to separate the elective activity (made indirectly in the structure) from that concerning the removal of a representative from his office, to be directly entrusted to direct the first ring. Noting that the institutional rings are six at most, we can see that each village must monitor and in case expel from their task at most six people. In fact, the seats of the various rings are not held by individuals but by teams, within which however the protection of the will of the people is entrusted to the representative coordinator; therefore the coordinators are those who should be judged directly because it is to them that the highest responsibility is entrusted. As for the rest of their team, they will be judged by experts within the village by the same procedure or, as accomplices of the coordinator, will automatically follow his destiny. But what destiny? What should happen to those who are removed from their office? If the direct intervention of the first ring has been necessary, it means that our representative has been guilty of a serious fault as having deliberately betrayed the trust of the group that represents or has intentionally acted against the interests of the whole community.
We believe that such conduct is incompatible with the role of representative, then that individual will be removed and declared unfit to this office by the unquestionable will of the people. In other words, he will be cut off forever from politics. In less serious cases, the representative may be removed and disqualified only for that ring and the next ones, or will be suspended for a defined number of years. It is clear that the direct judgment  of the citizens will be required only in particularly serious cases, while to replace those who simply were not good enough, the concentric structure will be used.
The main tool to guarantee democracy, the Validation of fitness of a representative that allows the population to assert its authority when the ring structure is not enough, will be similar to a referendum rather than repeal the law will remove the representatives from their office . We conclude by noting that such a system can be used only if an effective information system and adequate cultural preparation are available, issues that we have already discussed in previous chapters. Experience shows that the direct elections are not democratic when applied to large masses: it follows that the proposing or repealing referendums and the verifications should not be considered as means for achieving democracy but as instruments to defend it when the indirect process is not working well. These are protection systems to be used in case of emergency and, when their intervention is needed, the fault that has occurred in the indirect system should  be immediately fixed with appropriate reforms.

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5.c.23 – How to ensure control over the three powers?

August 14, 2010 — Riccardo Sabellotti - Giacinto Sabellotti

23-garanzia-rid

How to ensure control over the three powers?

To exercise control over the Legislative Center, it is enough to apply the Verification to it, as to all other rings, but to make things even easier we can predict that the popular view is activated automatically every two years so that everyone knows that he has to give account of his work to the first ring within a short time. Is it appropriate to apply such an instrument at the Executive Center and to the Judicial Center? We think that  perhaps it is even more important since the work of the Executive Center is immediately reflected in the daily life of the population: let’s think of a new system of management of medical specialized checkups at public hospitals that significantly shortens the waiting time, of a new system of access to university lectures that allows to anyone who wishes it to follow them, of a new system of allocating jobs in the public offices that it is fast, impartial etc.. It is therefore a crucial point of our concentric system, that must radiate outwards its actions with the benefit of the entire population. Ministers must not be subordinated to those who appointed them directly, but must respond directly to the People, the real sovereign in a true democracy. A quite similar procedure can be applied to the judicial authorities, on which the security and confidence that the citizen shall put in the State depends.
We believe most appropriate, indeed necessary, that the various ministers and the head of the Palace of Justice are subject to a verification every two years. We have already said how it is difficult to exercise the democratic rights with one vote and it is therefore logical that people confirm or do not confirm the various ministers with separate votes: why dissolve an entire government when, for instance, only the ministers of Defense and Education are not fit for their role? And why keep inefficient Ministers of Defense and Education not to dissolve the entire government? Voting separately the various ministers  would solve the problem.
In our democratic structure based on a concentric system in which the entire population is involved, although with different functions and with different degree of involvement, we have seen how it is essential a flexibility that allows continuous aggregations in the first ring and consequently continuous reorganization of the groups in levels thereafter. However, we cannot forget the need to give a minimum time to the  members of the central bodies, both Legislative and Administrative (of the Executive Center and of the Palace of Justice), to express their work done through a continuity of direction.
To balance these needs, we can establish that the greatest flexibility remains for the formation of groups of different rings (through the mere expression of willingness, to be expressed using the special institutional software), while the Legislators and the Administrators, once appointed, cannot be replaced respectively by the or the Section of origin for a period of four years.
However, strong of a four-years power, the Legislators and the Administrators may take advantage of it to reap some personal benefits or, worse, to exploit the concentric system on the contrary, so that it radiates towards the outside a generalized system of corruption that would consolidate their stay in power. Accordingly a popular verification every two years perfectly fits in the system: after being elected to any office, all our senior officials must give account of their work to the first ring; in order to avoid being dismissed in mid-term they must necessarily take into account expectations of the population. After the first check they will do likewise if they wish to remain in politics.
As a further security measure, to prevent that over time they can consolidate, in an hidden manner, a system of private power based on their political office, we can also establish that the positions of Legislator and Administrator are not renewable; they shall therefore continue to cover official roles only in the outer rings.

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5.c.24 – Does the concept of verification complements that of election?

August 15, 2010 — Riccardo Sabellotti - Giacinto Sabellotti

24-verifica-ridDoes the concept of verification complements that of election?

In the existing political systems, where the people are called to the polls, we rightly talk of electoral competition; there are more candidates for the same office and each must compete to win. So in a system based on propaganda, there will be a continued revival of special effects: the speeches prepared by staff of experts in communication, in statistics and psychology, TV commercials made by the best directors, screenwriters, make-up artists and musicians, convention in the major sport facilities with majorette, giant screens, star shows, fireworks, etc.., but who pays the hundreds of millions of Euros needed to do all this? We have seen that there is no lack of sponsors, but they are those groups of economic power that inevitably will require and then obtain by those elected what is needed to strengthen their dominant position.
With the democratic structure we have already solved this problem because one becomes Legislator or Administrators through a concentric system of appointments that do not provide for any election campaign, while with the system of popular verification we overcome the protective barrier that is formed by the accumulation of rings.
It is to be noted that there is a big difference between an election and a confirmation; in an election, the candidate must compete against other suitors (in a more or less correct manner); in a confirmation the representatives must compete only with themselves and the only way to win is to achieve the results that people expect. In case of removal, the office will be obviously entrusted to another person with the usual system. While now, trying to be re-elected, a representative must pay his debt to those who have supported him and still it does not warrant a reappointment, with the new system, he must necessarily take into account the needs of the population and this will ensure him to keep his place until the end of mandate, and the possibility of continuing to hold political roles in the outer rings. It follows that in case of opposing interests, those of citizens will always prevail. The elections, however, surely remain necessary, but in our structure are much more reliable and, through verification, also subject to direct and specific corrections.

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5.c.25 – Can we sum everything up in a graph?

August 16, 2010 — Riccardo Sabellotti - Giacinto Sabellotti

Can we sum everything up in a graph?

It’s now time to pull the threads of what we said in this chapter and to outline the new democratic structure by taking as example a Western country whose official figures tell us that the last elections had 47,126,326 voters.

   

INFORMAL RINGS

     
FIRST RING
(Groups)
   
       
     47.126.326   Adults who gather in groups of 5 to 9 members
       
                      7   Members who in average form a group and appoint a Trustee
       
         6.732.332   Groups representing on average 7 peoplethat need to express their discomfort to their Trustees
       
       
SECOND RING
(Clans)
   
       
         6.732.332   Trustees who meet Clan made of 3 to 5 members
       
                      4   Average members that form a Clan and who appoint a Trustee
       
         1.683.083   Clans representing an average of 28 personswhich should list the problems considered the cause of the discomfort felt bythe first ring to the respective Trustees
       
       
THIRD RING
(Villages)
   
       
         1.683.083   Trustees who meet in Villages made of 5 to 9 members
       
                      6   Members who are on average a Village,appoint a team of experts choosing in the outer ringsand appoint a Director who coordinates the Team of expertsto be sent to the fourth ring
       
            280.514   Villages that represent on average 168 peoplethat should frame the issues to be entrusted to the respective Delegates
       
       
FOURTH RING
(Alliances)
   
       
  280.514   Teams that gather in Leagues of 7 to 13 villages through the delegates
       
             10   Delegates to form on average a League,appoint a team of experts choosing them in the outer ringsand appoint a Delegate who coordinates the team of expertsto be sent to the fifth ring
       
              28.052   Alliances representing an average 1680 people andwhich should select the problems to be presented, in order of priority,to the respective Delegates
       
       
       
     

INSTITUTIONAL RINGS

       
FIFTH RING
(Suburb)
   
       
              28.052   Teams who meet Villages from 7 to 13 Leagues through the Delegates
       
                    10   Delegates who form on average a Suburb,appoint a Team of experts choosing within the outer ringsand appoint a Delegate who coordinates the team of expertsto be sent to the sixth ring
       
                2.805   Suburbs representing an average of 16,800 people andthat must study the solutions to problems, implement these solutionsto local problems and present to their Delegates the possible solutionsto collective problems
       
       
       
       
SIXTH RING
(Contradas)
   
       
                2.805   Teams that come together in Contradas made of 7 to 13 villages through their Delegates
       
                    10   delegates to form on average a Contrada,
      appoint a Team of experts in choosing within the outer ringsand appoint a Delegate who coordinates the Team of expertsto be sent to the seventh ring
       
                    280   Contradas representing an average of 168,000 people andthat need to refine and arrange the hypothesis of solutions fromfifth ring, apply these solutions to the problems of their own territorial competence
and present to their delegates the possible solutions
to problems having wider extent
       
       
SEVENTH RING
(Provinces)
   
       
  280   teams who meet in Province made of 7 to 13 Contradas through their Delegates
       
  10   Contradas that on average form a Province,appoint a Team of experts choosing them within the outer ringsand appoint a team of 10 Legislators with different and predefined skillsto be sent to the Outer Legislative Center
       
       
  28   Provinces which represent on average 1,680,000 people andthat need to refine and plan the possible solutions coming from the sixthring, apply solutions to such problems of the Province
and submit to their Legislators the possible solutions to
regional and national problems
       
       
       
       
       
     

CENTRAL RINGS

       
OUTER LEGISLATIVE CENTER
(Regions)
   
       
                28   Teams who meet into 7 Province Regions
       
  10   Legislators for each team with different and defined skills
       
  280   Legislators divided into  Legislative thematic Sections with 28 membersFurther divided into 4 regional groups
       
       
                    7   Provinces forming the Regions
       
                    4   Regions that on average represent 11,760,000 people andthat need to refine and manage the possible solutions coming fromseventh ring, apply these solutions to regional problemsand formulate law proposals having national effectiveness for the Internal Legislative Center to which they send their team
       
       
       
       
       
INTERNAL LEGISLATIVE CENTER
(Nation)
   
       
                    4   Teams of Legislators that represent the whole Nation
       
                  10   Legislators for each team, with different and defined thematic skills
       
  40   Legislators divided in thematic Legislative Sections Legislative made of 4 members
       
                      1   Chamber representing the whole national population, which has to coordinate
      the work done by the former ring, in order to reach an agreement on law
      proposals coming from the Outer Legislative Center, to implement the selected
      solutions to national problems and to maintain the relations with the Executive Center
       
EXECUTIVE CENTER    
       
  10   Ministries with different thematic skills
       
  10   Ministries drawn from the 280 Legislators of the Outer Legislative Center
       
  10   Pairs of Technicians and Mediators for consulting purpose (one for each Ministry)also drawn with the same system
       
       
       
PALACE OF JUSTICE     
       
  1   Body independent from the Legislative Center and the Executive Center
       
  1   Person in charge drawn among the 28 members of the Legislative Justice Section of the Outer Legislative Center
       
       
  4   Pairs Technicians and Mediators selected one for each region for consulting purpose, also drawn with the same system
       
       
LEGISLATURE    
       
                      4   Years of charge for Legislators and Administratorsthat cannot be dismissed by the ring that appointed them
       
       
INTERMEDIATE VERIFICATIONS    
       
                      1   after two years of term
      through which the entire adult population to vote to confirm or remove
      each  minister, the Head of the Palace of Justiceand the individual thematic Legislative Sections
       

 

            It can be added that in this system both the preferences for choosing the representative and the confirmation votes of midterm reviews are evident; everyone can check on the institutional software whether his position reflects his expression of will, and then the problem of electoral fraud would be finally solve. Also can be noted that political parties no longer have reason to exist and that they are not the referents of economic powers, which will have to start to rely on their entrepreneurial skills rather than on corruption. It is finally clear that any citizen, once arrived the third ring thanks to the confidence of his family and close friends, with only five steps can aspire to the office of Legislator.

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5.c.26 – How much does the democratic structure cost?

August 17, 2010 — Riccardo Sabellotti - Giacinto Sabellotti

26-costo-rid

How much does the democratic structure cost?

When the democratic structure becomes applicable, it will be priceless; any costs to be paid to achieve would be well spent; it would be indeed an excellent investment, that will produce huge profit which only a true democracy can give. Anyway,  we can also do the following accounts: taking our Country as example, for a Parliament composed of 952 members in 2007 incurred the following costs for current expenditure (amounts in Euro):

EXPENSE    
 AMOUNT IN EURO  
     
FEES TO PARLIAMENTARIANS              245.963.000,00
GRANTS TO FORMER PARLIAMENTARY OFFICIAL PERSONNEL              209.950.000,00
EMPOYEES WAGES              482.510.000,00
GRANTS TO FORMER EMPLOYEES              167.505.000,00
SOCIALSECURITY CHARGES                 22.785.711,00
BUILDINGS LEASE                 44.215.000,00
ORDINARY MAINTENANCE                 18.999.000,00
CLEANING SERVICES                 12.305.000,00
UTILITIES (WATER, LIGHT, GAS)                   4.620.000,00
UTILITIES (TELEPHONE)                   3.080.000,00
POSTAGE                   1.000.000,00
CONSUMPTION MATERIAL                   8.967.500,00
PRINT OF PARLIAMENTARY ACTS                   8.870.000,00
OTHER PRINTING EXPENSES                   1.453.000,00
TRANSPORT COSTS                20.296.000,00
SERVICES OF NON EMPLOYED PERSONNEL                44.772.000,00
PROFESSIONAL UPDATES                   1.780.000,00
STUDIES AND RESEARCH                   3.071.000,00
OTHER STUDIES                      600.000,00
INSURANCES                   6.114.000,00
EXTERNAL INFORMATION                15.068.000,00
COMPUTER SERVICES                  8.224.000,00
CATERING                  2.779.000,00
GOODS, SERVICES AND OTHER COSTS               60.095.000,00
CONSULTATIONS                      100.000,00
   
CONTRIBUTIONS TO PARLIAMENTARY GROUPS                73.730.000,00
CONTRIBUTIONS TO INTERNATIONAL BODIES                       510.000,00
SCHOLARSHIPS                      255.000,00
MISCELLANEOUS CONTRIBUTIONS                  2.696.000,00
BALLOTS VERIFICATION COSTS                  1.060.000,00
COMMITTEE FOR CRIME INQUIRY                      300.000,00
COMMITTEE FOR WASTE INQUIRY                         75.000,00
COMMITTE FOR HEALTH INQUIRY                         40.000,00
OTHER INQUIRY COMMITTEES                  1.200.000,00
COMMITTEES, BOARDS AND COUNCILS                  2.670.000,00
BICAMERAL COMMITTEES                      745.000,00
RADIO AND CCTV SURVEILLANCEI                      285.000,00
PROSECUTION PROCEEDINGS                           5.000,00
INTERNATIONAL ACTIVITIES                  4.283.000,00
CEREMONIAL COSTS                  4.400.000,00
TRANSACTIONS                      900.000,00
SAFETY AT WORKPLACE                      920.000,00
TAXES AND CHARGES               60.385.000,00
REFUND OF AMOUNTS                        80.000,00
UNFORESEEN COSTS               19.964.289,00
CAPITAL EXPENDITURE               48.955.000,00
   
TOTAL AMOUNT           1.618.580.500,00          

From the above budgets of Parliament also appears the capital expenditure (i.e. expenditure that do not expire their utility in the year in which they were incurred, such as electrical installations, furniture, etc..). For the year 2007 these expenses amounted to Euro 48,955,000.00, but according to correct accountancy  principles, precisely because they relate to utility assets having pluriennial utility, they should be attributed only in part; for example, where it is estimated that the equipment can be used for five years, the corresponding expenditure should be charged to 20% for each year. Why this fundamental accounting technique, called depreciation, is not applied in the budget of the Parliament? Because for some unknown physical law, those that are normally durable goods inside Parliament wear excessively and do not last long, so much so that every year it is spent an amount similar to that of the previous year. These costs then, although known as “capital account”, should actually be regarded as current expenditure.
Even without wanting to economize on these costs (but on the 1,290,000.00 Euros spent a year for the service clothes maybe something could be done), we should remember that in our concentric model the Legislators are much less than the current 952 MPs and then, by comparing this total to 40 members of the Internal Legislative Center, you get a saving of Euro 1,550,572,915.00. If we add to this an amount of 200,819,044.00 Euros, which was allocated to political parties as reimbursement of electoral expenses, we obtain a total savings amounting to Euro 1,751,391,960.00.
By using this sum to pay the representatives of the institutional rings, we might get the following breakdown

Level  Number        Monthly Fees         Annual Fees
                      of       persons           per capita             per ring
Teams of the fifth ring (4 members)

         112.208

                   850,00   1.144.521.600,00
Teams of the sixth ring (6 members)

              16.830

               2.000,00      403.920.000,00
Teams of the seventh ring (10 members)

            2.800

               5.000,00      168.000.000,00
External Legislators

               280

             10.000,00         33.600.000,00
       
TOTAL ANNUAL EXPENDITURE        1.750.041.600,00

 This is just an accounting exercise, but it shows that without adding a euro to what is already currently spent, the democratic structure would be financially sustainable.
Finally, it is to be noted that in a democratic structure, no more taxes should be paid, but associative dues and the difference is not only lexical but also substantial: tax imposition (it is no coincidence that it is so called) are tributes imposed from above to subjects, the associative dues are shared among peers to support the expenses of common interest. It will have no more importance to the extent of the contribution, but satisfaction subsequent to obtaining the public services; in private, we all bore some expense exceeding the average for a given asset (a pair of shoes, a cell phone, a car) as we strongly desired it and then, with satisfaction, we exclaimed, it is well spent money! With the democratic structure the same thing can be realized, because once again  we are those who decide how much to spend and on what.

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5.c.27 – How the flow of money should be?

August 18, 2010 — Riccardo Sabellotti - Giacinto Sabellotti

27-flusso-rid

How the flow of money should be?

When you create an association, it is to achieve a common goal and drawing a common advantage; let’s accept to contribute financially to the costs that we have set for achieving the goals that we ourselves have chosen, it could not be otherwise. When an association decides to join other similar or complementary associations, it does so in order to exploit economies of scale and this union will be managed through the representatives; for individual associations it will be normal to financially contribute to the new structure and this will be shared according to the need thereof. Growing up in the territory, the association probably will have more extensive facilities that group the local ones, always replicating the same model. Assuming an association with three levels (local, regional and national level) and having to determine the flow of funds needed for the different needs, no one would plan to delegate the national or regional council to assess local needs, determine the necessary funding and collect the money needed to then pass on to various levels of government, which will support the costs; nobody would do it simply because it makes no sense: no one knows better than local people the needs of the same and the resources available, so why delegating it to a more distant body? How much tortuous bureaucracy more would be needed? It is also obvious that if the local association was not satisfied with the results achieved by the regional or national group, it would withdrawn from it, having failed the requirements for joining it.
Why, then, the national tax system has always worked this way? The answer is simple: the tax levy, up to a very recent time, was imposed by the monarch with his sovereign power to maintain its structure (buildings, courtiers, servants, weapons, soldiers, etc..), surely not to fund services for the people. When the kings were deposed, real democracies were never created, the noble class was replaced by a different ruling class that inherited the handy tax system still applied. When it was thought of dividing the legislative, administrative and judiciary powers for the reasons we have previously discussed, an even more important one was neglect: the economic power. It is with the economic power that people can be controlled, laws and judgments of convenience can be organized; It is to whom is holding the cash that people must address with devotion for some benevolent gift, even though the cash is continually and largely filled by those who find themselves in the position of asking.
It is to be noted that the centralized economic power also hampers any attempt to political replacement that starts from those bodies closer to the population and therefore theoretically more feasible. When with free votes new representatives are elected, perhaps organized into a new civic list, and a district badly administered by the branches of political parties at national, regional and provincial levels is conquered, what happens? If the new representatives will submit to the vassalage system, they will suffer the same influences of the previous administration, the population will not see any tangible benefit than before and would lose all hope of being able to change anything, resigned to its role of subjection; if instead the new representatives will be faithful to the principles for which they were elected, they will remain invisible to the central power and suffer from the same low-money donations to be used in local public works; so the local population, often unaware of this system of management of financial resources, will not see the results, will consider the representatives of the civic list even more inadequate than the previous ones and will return to the past from which it had fled.
It can therefore be concluded that no true democracy can really be achieved if the system does not leave the control of economic resources, where the same are produced; it should be noted however, that larger groups (compared to those of the town communities) are convenient to trade, production, employment , cultural, military level, etc.. and will be created and financed by all possible solidarity because freely chosen, and of common benefit.

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5.c.28 – Did we achieve our objectives?

August 19, 2010 — Riccardo Sabellotti - Giacinto Sabellotti

28-centro-rid

Did we achieve our objectives?

Let’s check together if the newly designed system meets the starting needs that we have set:
– the democratic structure puts all adult citizens on the first ring and gives them equal opportunities; anyone, with only seven steps, can take the office of Legislator
– the structure is based on a concentric system of small groups in which the speakers capable but dishonest cannot be favored
– the people who do not want or cannot take political positions in the different rings can still rely on direct knowledge of their representatives (presumably at least until the fourth ring); since representatives of the third ring have direct relations at least until the fifth, every citizen can relate with a Legislator with only two mediations
– The Executive Center, formed with the concentric system, is a form of self-government which of course will follow the popular will; in any case it is to people that it has to give account for its actions during verification for mid-term confirmation in office
– the system of verification for mid-term confirmation allows an effective control of Representatives
– for the above one can say that citizens are the highest authority
– the people who now abstain from voting, which in that country taken as an example exceed the 19% of the population, often discouraged and resigned, may find in the new system new interests and new enthusiasm, bringing their contribution in the selection of the best ideas.
Based on the above, we can therefore say that the democratic structure, as designed, realizes a true democratic system, but once again we shall remember that these are laboratory tests, which although accurate, will have to be tested in order to be considered truly valid. Our democratic structure is probably not perfect in its current form and should be perfected over time based on achieved experience; however any democracy must also be able to improve. It is important to note that even those who do not appreciate our system will have the opportunity to change it by participating: is there any other political system having this characteristic?

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5.c.29 – Where to start?

August 20, 2010 — Riccardo Sabellotti - Giacinto Sabellotti

29-inizio-rid

Where to start?

Building on the trail of thoughts that we did, it should be remembered that:
– the novelties that crack our system of beliefs, namely that disorientate our mental map, are unconsciously denied
– the syndrome of serfdom and the natural tendency to rely on a leader make us to remain inactive in expectation that someone else will solve our problems
– if we set ourselves targets out of our reach, soon we will not have any results obtained and the resulting demoralization will be the greater as greater is the effort made in vain
– the increasingly hectic life makes increasingly little the time available
– human values, to be truly such, must be put into practice in daily life.
From these observations one might think that the realization of the concentric democracy is not feasible, but we must also recall that:
– novelties, although upsetting, are accepted to an extent directly proportional to the increase of discomfort generally felt
– the concentric democracy has not the presumption to involve the entire population but only 5% of the same, namely those who are already recognized as leaders in the family and circle of friends and acquaintances
– the creation of a modern village, within the group of relatives or friends with whom we share several similarities, brings results in the near future with consequent gratification
– participation in a modern village develops immediate synergies that also lead to a saving of time
– the value of true democracy is made real our own with the participation in a modern village.
In parallel to the experience of modern villages, the experiment of the democratic structure could be done in groups that already exist but that do not have an efficient system of true representation. The perfect test for the new model of democracy is thus made up of unions of workers: they in fact, despite being set up to represent the interests of a given category, are never able to fully play their role for their lack of democracy and then of representativeness; proof of it is that within a given category of workers, various unions are formed in competition and in conflict with each other, in the general disaffection and demoralization of the workers themselves; it is also odd that members of the union, when they feel not adequately represented by their delegates, they find nothing better than organize protests of dissent to those who should be their subordinates, and perhaps even form a new union. It is obvious that if they were democratic organizations, such representatives would be immediately removed.
If workers, not just employees, but also professionals, craftsmen and merchants, were able to create trade unions and associations organized under the rules of concentric democracy, they would immediately have great benefits in their working life, would feel at last protected by an effective system (not by perfect people ,who are not there simply because they do not exist) and gradually they would extend this system to even wider areas.
It is to be noted that such testing could be performed in parallel in the various categories of work, making the same experimentation feasible and reducing much the time needed for the test.

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5.c.30 – Have we arrived at the end or is it a start?

August 21, 2010 — Riccardo Sabellotti - Giacinto Sabellotti

30-fine-rid

Have we arrived at the end or is it a start?

Here we are, after several ups and several holes, we have reached the end of our path of reflections which represented a kind of self training. Such a journey can be covered only by a small unified group, maybe reduced to just two people, but never alone and never in too many, even if there is nothing to prevent that many small groups, groups on a human scale, can proceed side by side.
During this journey we have learned that we are all on the same boat and that we must all rowing in the same direction, but we also understood how to interpret our mental map and how to horizon with the compass of our values to overcome the perils of navigation. We therefore designed new routes, to sail with several boats that can increase in number at each port, to be a large fleet.
For the last time we remember that every new idea must be subjected to the test of facts to be considered valid: here then ends our theoretical course and the experimental start, the results of which will be the basis for further consideration.
So, courageous captains, are we prepared to organize our little crew, and finally take up the helm of our life?
Come on boys, as we are not to sail into the unknown, but we are starting a wonderful cruise: let’s untie the last ropes that bind us to the pole … and full steam ahead!

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