"I do not know if the people of the United States would vote for superior men
if they ran for office, but there can be no doubt that such men do not run."

A. de Tocqueville

 

"There is one thing stronger than all the armies of the world,
and that is an idea whose time has come."
Victor Hugo

 

March 18, 2019

Welcome to...

SelfGovernanceScience.com 21stCenturyCivics.com 535PKQs.com

535: number of voting members in Congress

PKQ: Philosopher King/Queen

 

Three domain names. One idea "whose time has come."

SELF-GOVERNANCE SCIENCE

 

 

Introduction
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important acronym
EFFS: economic, financial, fiscal and societal

Political scientists, analysts and thinkers in academia, think tanks, media and elsewhere have increasingly been using terms like broken and dysfunctional to describe our U.S. Congress and America's democratic process.

To date, no one has figured out how to "fix" either of them because, as you are about to discover, they have been trying to, in a manner of speaking, fix "21st century" problems with "18th century" conceptual tools.

The key for our best and brightest thinkers (our average thinkers, too) is to simply start asking the right questions -- beginning with one that, at first glance, makes no sense at all:

Why don't America's ~70 million left-of-center (LOC), and ~70 million right-of-center (ROC) voters know that they actually agree almost completely on the legislative policies they want Congress to enact into law to “solve” our major EFFS problems?

Clearly, the response of anyone who knows anything about liberalism and conservatism will be: how is that even possible? Our LOC voters largely favor "liberal" values and principles -- from somewhat to very strongly -- and therefore support the policies advocated by the Democratic Party. At their most basic, those policies boil down to (from this layman's perspective):

    • Using income redistribution measures, e.g., subsidized healthcare, food stamps, etc., to make life a little more bearable for our society's poor and needy -- paid for by making the wealthy pay their “fair share” of America's income taxes.
    • Placing more rules and restrictions on what business, especially big (read: greedy) business, can do in pursuit of the almighty dollar.

Meanwhile, our ROC voters largely favor "conservative" values and principles -- from somewhat to very strongly -- and therefore support the policies advocated by the Republican Party, which, at their most basic, involve:

    • Cutting government programs and spending, and lowering everyone's taxes -- income and otherwise.
    • Reducing government's burdensome rules and regulations on everyone, but especially on the business community (read: our nation's job creators).

It's clear that these two governing philosophies' policies couldn't be further apart -- polar opposites, in fact. The problem is that everyone is operating on the "18th century" assumption that there are only two possible types of legislative solutions Congress can realistically craft to solve America's EFFS problems:

  • "government" solutions = liberal/socialist policies
  • "free market" solutions = conservative/libertarian policies

The roots of this "18th century" thinking can be traced back to an academic/intellectual debate among political philosophers that began long before our nation's founding. One that divided many of our founders -- and our legislators in Congress -- into two "political" factions almost from the very beginning:

 

Fast forward to today. We all have in our working vocabularies a small dictionary of well established liberal and conservative code words and talking points which are used by our:

  • politicians in Congress,
  • political analysts in academia, journalism and elsewhere, and
  • talking heads in cable news, talk radio, social media, etc.

...to endlessly, mindlessly “debate” which party's legislative policies will solve America's EFFS policies verses which party's policies will, if anything, make those problems worse.

So embedded is this vocabulary in our collective psyche that it is all but impossible for us to recognize that, in legislative terms, neither political/ideological (PI) approach has ever solved more than a tiny fraction of our nation's major EFFS problems -- at best.

That's because, as a general proposition:

  • Political ideologies don't cause, create or exacerbate a democracy's EFFS problems, self-serving politicians do.
  • Political ideologies don't solve a democracy's EFFS problems, NON-self-serving, NON-politicians do.

Long story short, our PI-based vocabulary has effectively created a mile wide wedge between LOC and ROC voters that should not be there -- a wedge whose presence goes a long way toward explaining why both groups keep Congress permanently filled with what they consider to be one of the most loathsome species on the planet: career politicians.

To make a large portion of that wedge simply disappear, our society must start exploring a number of never before explored thought experiments, which will give rise to a number of never before asked questions -- whose answers will open the floodgates to a number of new insights, especially re the democratic process.

For the time being, think of those never before explored thought experiments as 21st century thought experiments, those never before asked questions as 21st century questions, those new insights as 21st century insights, and the legislative policies our LOC and ROC voters would both wholeheartedly support as 21st century legislative policies.

Once a small dictionary of new, 21st century terms (describing new, 21st century concepts and insights) becomes part of the working vocabularies of our LOC and ROC voters, it will become glaringly obvious to both groups that they are actually in almost 100% agreement on:

    1. The legislative policies they want Congress to enact to solve our major EFFS problems.

    2. The specific type of liberal Democratic and conservative Republican legislator-candidates they must start actively locating, aggressively recruiting – i.e., arm-twisting into running (mostly via social media) – and electing to Congress.

    3. Their common objective (and American democracy's holy grail): a veto-proof, filibuster-proof Congress that is both capable of and eager to craft and enact those 21st century policies into law.

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the most important of the 21st century thought experiments*

* may qualify as the most thought provoking, most “new knowledge” spawning, and longest titled thought experiment of the 21st century.

The
U.S. Congress Consisting Of One Passionately Liberal Philosopher King
And One Passionately Conservative Philosopher Queen
Thought Experiment

(a.k.a., the Two PKQ Congress Thought Experiment).

To begin, let's imagine that America's voters wave a magic wand that instantly turns our two chamber, 535 seat Congress into a one chamber, two seat Congress – one seat permanently reserved for a passionately liberal philosopher king, the other for a passionately conservative philosopher queen.

Let's call them PKQ-caliber legislators, or PKQs for short.

IMPORTANT FYI:
the mirror opposite of a PKQ is a PAP: Politically Ambitious Politician

To make our PKQs even more exceptional, let's give both of them the intelligence of an Einstein, the wisdom of a Solomon, the compassion of a Mother Teresa, the pure logic of a Mr. Spock, the ingenuity of a MacGyver, the vision of a Steve Jobs, and the moral compass of a Martin Luther King, Jr.

We now have what Plato and others in history have called the most perfect or ideal form of government possible (given our species' many human flaws and shortcomings): a benign dictatorship.

In this case, it's a benign co-dictatorship. One that issues its decrees in the form of legislation, jointly crafted by our co-dictator-legislators, which they then wisely assign our Executive Branch the responsibility of implementing and enforcing.

FYI: this is the Legislative/Executive Branch relationship our founders drafted into the U.S. Constitution, with the expressed intention that the President of the United States never become an Imperial President (which, fyi, is what an unbroken chain of craven, responsibility-phobic, PAP-dominated U.S. Congresses allowed to happen starting a long, long time ago).

Back to our PKQs. For any legislation to become law, both of our PKQ-caliber legislator-dictators have to vote for it. And since one PKQ is passionately liberal while the other is passionately conservative, any legislation they craft must not offend either PKQ's ideological values or principles.

From this thought experiment, a number of questions come to mind:

  1. How many of America's major EFFS problems can our PKQ-controlled Congress solve with legislation that doesn't offend the ideals and principles of liberalism or conservatism?

    Answer: Essentially, all of them, principally (but not solely) via a new legislative agenda and new category of legislation, whose main focus is systematically going through the tens of thousands of pieces of legislation enacted into law by all 116 current and past Congresses (= 230+ years) -- and, relying on hindsight, common sense, Einstein-level intelligence, Solomon-like wisdom, etc., removing every self-serving legislative provision inserted by every self-serving "politician" who has ever served in Congress -- which, fyi, is a lot of politicians.

    For the time being, let's call these self-serving provisions: "dysfunctionalizing" legislative provisions (DLPs). At some point, it should start becoming apparent that DLPs, which one could reasonably estimate number in the hundreds of thousands, if not millions -- PLUS the tens of thousands (?), hundreds of thousands (?), millions (?) of bureaucratic rules and regulations that directly or indirectly were created as a result of the DLPs -- are responsible for dysfunctionalizing America's major systems: free market, healthcare, financial, public education, criminal justice, immigration, mental heath, etc.

    DLPs help explain where the lion's share of our major EFFS problems "come from" -- and also why so many of them seem so intractable, so impervious to legislative solutions.

    The concept of DLPs opens the door to other 21st century insights as well -- for example, why our free market system isn't even remotely free, or fair; an unfortunate, and unfair, reality that makes sense when you consider that DLPs are the means by which the last 230 years of self-serving PAPs in Congress have engaged in the practice of a variety of forms of legalized cronyism -- i.e., government created and/or sanctioned favoritism -- e.g., special interest-, vested interest-, and political cronyism (e.g., patronage).

    It's important to note that making our nation's free market system truly free and fair will not, in and of itself, solve all of America's EFFS problems. It is, after all, just one of many of our major systems in serious need of substantial repair (think: massive de-dysfunctionalizing) by PKQ-caliber legislators. But "optimizing" our economic system will get us well down the road to that highly desirable, easily achievable objective.

  2. How many of America's LOC and ROC voters will support this new legislative agenda?

    Answer: Once they have a working knowledge of these new, 21st century terms and concepts, a reasonable estimate: 90-95+% of them.

  3. Can a Congress permanently controlled by self-serving PAPs engaged in a never-ending, all-consuming, “all's fair in love and political war” struggle for power, much of it purely for power's sake, craft the same kind of legislation our benign co-dictator-legislators would craft?

    Answer: After hell freezes over, yes. Before then, no.

  4. What might be the best and fastest way to develop the body of new, 21st century knowledge our society needs to go from being a "dystopian" democracy -- i.e., Congress permanently controlled by self-serving PAPs -- to a "neartopian" democracy -- i.e., Congress permanently controlled by selfless PKQs?

    Answer: Get these new terms and concepts on everybody's radar and into their working vocabulary -- ASAP. Also, convince a small but critical mass of America's political scientists to become vocal advocates of a new sub-field in their discipline: Self-Governance Science (a.k.a., Comparative Self-Governance).

"A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step." Lao Tzu

This thought experiment constitutes the first step in a journey that, once social media's movers and shakers start climbing on board, will be one of the fastest thousand mile journeys in history.

 

Please note: because we are dealing with new knowledge, this part educational, part advocacy site exists in a constant state of "conceptual" construction, deconstruction and reconstruction.

While it is taking place, several graphics, several unedited essay segments containing a fair amount of redundancy, and a lexicon of new, "21st century" terms and their working definitions, are provided to readers -- particularly political science and civics educators, and their students -- who wish to begin learning about this new knowledge immediately.

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Also, it's important to point out that our political science "establishment" will be inclined to reject or dismiss this new knowledge because it overturns some of their most cherished beliefs/theories re the democratic process.

In our social media-savvy society, the fastest way to convince these educators and thinkers that Self-Governance Science is, in fact, an "idea whose time has come," and even worthy of having its own sub-field, is by this web page and it's Twitter and Facebook pages receiving a respectable number of likes.

So, if you want your views to matter -- meaning, if you want to play an active role in the effort to make Self-Governance Science a reality -- you can do so simply by "liking" this web page and it's Twitter and/or Facebook pages.

For your convenience, the like (or follow) buttons have been placed at several spots on this page.

 
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First, the new terms and their definitions you will
need to make sense of the graphics that follow:

PKQ-caliber candidate:
(or PKQ for short)......

the best possible liberal, conservative, etc. candidate voters can elect to Congress -- one who is highly capable, but equally important, does not have (relatively speaking) a self-serving, politically ambitious or power hungry bone in their body.

FYI: the absolute worst possible candidate voters could elect to the House or Senate is a self-serving, politically ambitious "politician" (PAP), which explains why America is, by definition, a dystopian democracy.

Dystopian democracy:
(or dystopic democracy)
a democracy/constitutional republic(CR) that stays permanently mired in major economic, financial, fiscal and societal (EFFS) problems because its national legislature stays permanently controlled by (mostly well-meaning) PAPs engaged in a never-ending struggle for political power, much of it purely for power's sake..
Neartopian democracy:
(or neartopic democracy)
a democracy/CR that exists essentially free of major EFFS problems because its national legislature stays permanently controlled by PKQ-caliber legislators.

You now possess a small portion of the "21st century" terminology you need to understand why you and your fellow voters must take a "giant leap" forward in the way a free people engage in the process of self-governance.

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POLITICAL SCIENCE'S SHORTCOMING... and SOLUTION: GRAPHICAL METAPHOR #1

 

GRAPHICAL METAPHOR #2

 

GRAPHICAL METAPHOR #3

 
 

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America is at a major course-of-history-changing inflection point. One our nation's political science and civics instructors will likely play a pivotal role, perhaps the pivotal role.

At least, some of them. The ones capable of accepting -- hopefully, sooner rather than later -- the premise that, in cause/effect terms:

America now exists permanently mired in a plethora of major economic, financial, fiscal and societal (EFFS) problems because, for well over the last century, Congress has been permanently controlled by two political factions of PAPs engaged in a never-ending, all-consuming struggle for political power, much of it purely for power's sake.

That premise goes against the centuries-old conventional wisdom among our intelligentsia in academia and elsewhere that points the finger of blame at our voters -- or, rather, their flaws: apathy, naivete, gullibility, low intelligence, greed, etc. While technically true (since the buck does stop with the voters in a democracy), it is both more meaningful and instructive to place the salient blame on our intelligentsia, particularly our political scientists. They are the ones born with the gift of intelligence and the thirst for knowledge. More importantly, they are the ones who chose the role of society's "teachers" (and, presumably, committed themselves to the academic imperative/obligation re new knowledge that accompanies the role).

With the benefit of hindsight, it's clear that it should have occurred to our political scientists a long time ago, certainly with the advent of mass media, that to "save" our democracy, the only thing they had to do was simply start teaching our nation's mainstream left- and right-of-center voters why it is vital to America's EFFS well-being for they, the voters, to assume the responsibility of actively locating, recruiting, then electing PKQ-caliber liberal, conservative, etc. candidates -- in our 435 congressional and 50 Senate (principally, Democratic and Republican) primaries.

Their collective shortsightedness is best illustrated by the following graphic.

Political Science's "vision" problem in a nutshell...

 

Our political scientists' academic imperative
re Self-Governance Science

Every American should know by the fourth grade why Self-Governance Science is key to a democracy's health -- and, by the sixth grade, be able to have a coherent discussion on the "Fundamental ANI Truth of Self-Governance"

The Fundamental ANI* Truth of Self-Governance
* Apolitical/Non-Ideological

So long as Congress' major political factions are continually dominated and controlled by self-serving politicians whose political careers and/or the acquisition of power are far more important to them than doing what is in the best interest of the nation, it will not matter how well-meaning the politicians are, or which party controls the U.S. House or Senate in any given election cycle. In the long run, America's myriad of EFFS problems will, if anything, only grow worse.

However, if the reins of power in Congress begin to be continually wielded by a steady supply of highly capable legislators who (relatively speaking) don't have a self-serving, politically ambitious or power hungry bone in their body, it will not matter which party controls the U.S. House or Senate in any given election cycle -- America's myriad of EFFS problems will get solved, largely via legislation that is:

    1. neither "liberal" nor "conservative," and

    2. strongly supported by large majorities of America's liberals, moderates, conservatives, libertarians and social democrats.

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FOOD FOR THOUGHT: if you polled every political scientist and civics teacher in America, today -- along with all of our talking heads on cable news, talk radio, etc. -- and asked them what they thought about the idea of Self-Governance Science how many would see the need for it and support its creation -- verses how many would dismiss it as naive, simpleminded, idealistic, a waste of time, etc.?

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"Power is such a dangerous thing that ideally it should be wielded by people who don't want to use power, who would rather be doing something else, but who are willing to serve a certain number of years as a one-time duty, preferably at the end of a career doing something else."

Thomas Sowell [boldface and underline added]

 

 
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Most voters probably assume that the National Legislative Election Process (NLEP) consists of two parts, or two phases: the primary process phase and the general election phase. That can best be thought of as an "18th century" understanding of the NLEP.

Here's what a "21st century" understanding of the NLEP looks like...

HERE'S THE TRUE RELATIVE IMPORTANCE...

 

TAKEAWAY: Our nation's political scientists can continue perpetuating and/or "enabling" an 18th century understanding of the democratic process, or they can begin teaching our society's future (and current) mainstream voters how to use social media and other self-governance tools to recruit and elect liberal Democrats and conservative Republicans to Congress who are easily capable of working together and solving America's many EFFS problems.

 

 

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RE: THE MINION GRAPHIC

The fact that our young minion friend immediately grasps what has been impossible for America's intelligentsia, but especially our political scientists, to see these many decades easily qualifies as the greatest mystery in the fields of both political science and civics instruction. And, of course, begs the question: why?

It's safe to say that our voters haven't been electing PAPs (Politically Ambitious Politicians) to Congress for, literally, centuries because voters have a great deal of affection for, and trust in, PAPs. America's voters have been electing PAPs because our best and brightest political thinkers never made an effort to teach the vast mainstream of our voters how to proactively identify, then aggressively recruit and field (mostly) liberal and conservative candidates in our 435 congressional and 50 Senate Democratic and Republican primaries, respectively, who:

  1. aren't "politicians,"
  2. don't want to be politicians,
  3. have absolutely no desire to make a career in politics, but
  4. if elected in the General Election, will be willing (albeit begrudgingly) to serve in the national legislature for a few years as "a one-time [civic] duty" -- and only a few years, because both they and the voters understand just how easily political power, especially at the national level, can corrupt even the best of us.

Had our political scientists done this as recently as a few decades back, today America would not be, by definition, a dystopian democracy. And, it goes without saying, our voters would not have to hold their noses, come General Election Day and vote for the lessor of two evils.

But to finish up on our "why" question. Why have our political scientists never advised voters to add a "pre-primary, candidate identification and recruitment phase" into the National Legislative Election Process (NLEP)?

There are probably any number of possible answers.

My theory is intellectual hubris.

What began as an academic debate between political philosophers several hundred years ago over which governing philosophy, liberalism or conservatism, accomplishes the greatest good for the greatest number of people...

...eventually deteriorated into today's "my political ideology is better than your political ideology" intellectual urinating contest among and between our liberal and conservative elite in academia, think tanks, media, etc. That contest is presently so strong that, if it produced an odor, our universities and think tanks (and cable news networks) would reek with the stench of urine.

At some point in our history (my layman's guess, around the time of FDR's New Deal), Congress' self-serving PAPs "weaponized" these two governing philosophies. Meaning they co-opted the intellectual debate and turned it into the single most powerful (by far) demagogic weapon a PAP could possess.

Their pitch to voters became:

"Elect me and my party to Congress because policies based on my side's (morally superior) political ideology are the only way to "cure" America's EFFS ills. While policies based on the other side's political ideology aren't just incapable of solving our problems. In many cases they should be seen as the "diseases" responsible for causing our problems in the first place."

Our (Democratic and Republican) PAPs' demagogic narratives -- both of which were echoed by their respective cliques of "faithful believers" in academia, media, think tanks, Hollywood, etc. -- worked exceptionally well because, as the years progressed, the calculus/thought process for an increasing number of our nation's voters -- both unintelligent and intelligent, uninformed and well informed, greedy and non-greedy, etc. -- became:

better to vote for the loathsome, self-serving politician who supports policies that will cure America's EFFS ills than vote for the likeable, NON-self-serving NON-politician who supports polices that will make America's EFFS problems, if anything, worse.

You might say that's when, for many voters, liberalism and conservatism (as governing philosophies) became full blown, zero sum, good ideology vs. evil ideology religions.

With the result that this is what our voters have become...

 

 

If only...

...our political thinkers back in the 18th century had made it a point to emphasize a profoundly more important apolitical/non-ideological (ANI) truth...

Had our nation's best and brightest acted upon this (self-evident) ANI truth as recently as a few short decades ago, today:

  1. An entire sub-field of new, self-governance-based knowledge would now exist in political science,

  2. Every American would know by the fourth grade what competent self-governance meant -- and by the sixth grade, how to practice democracy competently, or effectively,

  3. Congress would not be broken, i.e., controlled by self-serving (and fiscally irresponsible, unaccountable, responsibility-phobic, demagogic, etc.) "politicians,"

  4. America would not be drowning in EFFS problems, and

  5. America's ~ 140 million left- and right-of-center voters voters would be acutely aware of their shared ANI objectives, and the "Voter's Rule of Thumb"

 

 

Key takeaway: Better late than never.

Our political science and civics educators should get to work, ASAP, exploring what they will quickly discover is an entire continent of new knowledge. And their incentive for beginning this exploration (beyond pursuing knowledge for its own sake): the certain knowledge that successfully teaching our voters a new "self-governance" skill, competent self-governance, will be infinitely easier to accomplish than trying to get our nation's self-serving PAPs to start putting the needs of their nation before their political careers.

 

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A Very Important Question

Q: Your main argument is that Congress' 435 House, and 100 Senate, members should not be "professional" or career politicians, or ever held any elected office at the state or local level.

So, how can a Congress controlled by "amateurs" possibly run a nation as large and complex as America?

A: First, the PKQ-caliber legislator-candidates that America's liberal, conservative, moderate, libertarian, etc. voters will be identifying, recruiting and electing to Congress will not be "amateurs." As a group, PKQs will be among the most intelligent, most educated -- most knowledgeable -- and most accomplished members of our society. They will NOT be, as some might fear, erudite academicians who will rule from high atop Mt. Olympus, divorced from the reality of everyday life; blindly indifferent to the daily plight of the unwashed masses.

That's because the average voter -- unwashed or otherwise -- wouldn't give such people the time of day, much less recruit them to run for our national legislature.

PKQs will also have what no other generation before us has had: the sum total of all human knowledge at their fingertips (or, rather, their smartphones). And the help of IBM's Watson, Alexa, Siri and other forms of artificial intelligence to help them make sense of it all.

Our PKQs will also have a wealth of human knowledge, experience, wisdom, expertise, etc. at their disposal -- in our federal agencies, our many think tanks in Washington and around the country, our universities, Silicon Valley, our business sector, etc.

Next, it should be abundantly clear that Congress doesn't "run" America. Our nation is "run" by tens of millions of Americans distributed throughout:

  • dozens of major federal agencies
  • 50 fully functioning state governments
  • thousands of county, city and other government bodies, and
  • millions of:
    • businesses
    • community and social organizations
    • school boards, churches
    • charities, etc.

More importantly, it is precisely because PKQs are not professional, or career, politicians (i.e., self-serving and politically ambitious) that when they are in control of America's national legislature they will be able to govern our nation, collectively, with the:

      • wisdom of a Solomon,
      • intelligence of an Einstein,
      • logic of a Mr. Spock,
      • compassion of a Mother Teresa,
      • moral compass of a Martin Luther King, Jr.
      • ingenuity of a MacGyver
      • vision of a Steve Jobs
      • common sense of a Mark Twain

In my view, this is yet another example of a self-governance knowledge that every American of voting age -- along with everyone who will soon be of voting age -- should possess.

IMPORTANT FYI: the fear that Washington's professional bureaucrats -- because they knew how to run things -- would end up running the show in Congress:

18th century thinking.

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“The world as we have created it is a process of our thinking.
It cannot be changed without changing our thinking.”

Albert Einstein

“Change your language and you change your thoughts.”
Karl Albrecht

 

interesting FYI

If America's 140 million voters had the ability to sit down around a giant kitchen table in order to discuss among themselves -- and only among themselves -- how to "cure" their diseased Congress, diseased politics and diseased democracy:

  • The table would be approximately twice Earth's circumference.

 

 

 

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FOOD FOR THOUGHT
re. a dystopian vs. neartopian democracy

One of the many heartbreaking consequences of America being a dystopian democracy is that our nation's overall character is shaped considerably by America's ultimate role models:

our elected legislative class in Washington -- i.e., our self-serving PAPs.

And what most stands out about essentially all of Congress' PAPs -- even the most well-meaning of them -- isn't pretty, especially if they think their re-election bid is in jeopardy. For example:

  • PAPs resort to personal attack ads.
  • In debates, PAPs are quick to attack, demean, ridicule, etc. their opponents.
  • In debates, or when questioned by reporters, PAPs have no qualms about:
    • pointing the finger of blame at anyone and everyone except themselves,
    • not answering questions that might reflect negatively on them,
    • obfuscating, e.g., providing such mangled answers that no one knows what they said or meant.
  • PAPs not just demean and dismiss the other party's legislative policies and reforms, but question the other side's honesty, integrity, motives, agenda, etc.

Because everyone in America is born and raised in a dystopian democracy, our nation's children and students grow up watching PAPs act like PAPs -- i.e., finger pointing, quick to blame, self-serving, etc. Equally damaging, our youngest minds watch our PAPs' armies of true believers (and well-paid believers) in cable news, academia, national media, think tanks, Hollywood, etc. viscously belittling and disparaging the "other" sides' policies, motives, integrity, etc.

As a result, our children and students naturally assume that, contrary to what their parents, teachers, etc. may be preaching to them, this is "normal" behavior for people who disagree with each other on issues large and small. Which means they are learning early on that this is how one responds to, interacts with, and talks about people whose views on the issues they disagree with.

The harmful (direct and indirect) ripple effects of this are almost impossible to calculate.

Suffice to say, a good case can be made that our nation's overall social behavior, attitudes, value systems, "character," etc. are all extremely unhealthy -- or diseased -- thanks to the unconscionably unethical behavior and actions of generations of consciously unethical role models -- i.e., our national legislature's self-serving, politically ambitious, demagoguing, pandering, fiscally irresponsible, blatantly unaccountable, finger pointing, responsibility avoiding, etc., etc. "politicians."

And why, therefore -- as a society, we are profoundly more:

    rude... crude... loud... greedy... envious... dishonest... angry... resentful... judgmental... self righteous... etc.

...and profoundly less:

thoughtful... conscientious... respectful... principled... courteous... peaceful... generous... civil... altruistic... resourceful... stoic... goal oriented... civic-minded... community focused... etc.

...than we would otherwise be.

Of course, what that also means is that when America's 535 role models are selfless, PKQ-caliber legislators who AREN'T self-serving, politically ambitious, demagoguing, pandering, etc. "politicians," we will find our society -- especially our children -- quickly emulating the behavior of PKQ-caliber legislators.

Meaning they will quickly become profoundly LESS:

    rude... crude... loud... greedy... envious... dishonest... angry... resentful... judgmental... self righteous... etc.

...and profoundly MORE:

thoughtful... conscientious... respectful... principled... courteous... peaceful... generous... civil... altruistic... resourceful... stoic... goal oriented... civic-minded... community focused... etc.

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The science of self-governance is "radical" science
...but it's not rocket science.

Here are some of the other new, 21st century concepts that would almost certainly end up in our voters' treasure trove of new, "self-governance" knowledge.

important acronyms:

ANI: apolitical/non-ideological

CTG: capacity to govern (as in CTG rating)

EFFS: economic, financial, fiscal & societal

NLEP: national legislative election process

PI: political/ideological

POM: purity of motive (as in POM rating)

 

additional terms/definitions:
(working definitions)

ANI-based legislative policy formulation process (see systems optimization)

Competent Self-Governance: the ability of voters to keep their national legislature filled with legislators who can keep their nation as free of major economic, financial, fiscal and societal problems as it is possible to be.

De-dysfunctionalizing legislation (see optimizing legislation)

Dysfunctionalizing legislation: any legislation that contains one or more provisions (hereafter referred to as, dysfunctionalizing provisions), or is written in its entirety, to advance the self-serving interests of the PAPs crafting/writing the legislation.

FYI: dysfunctionalizing legislation is how America's myriad of systems, e.g.,

  • free market system
  • federal tax system
  • financial system
  • healthcare system
  • public education system
  • criminal justice system
  • mental health system
  • etc.

...become infected with/diseased by political-, special interest- and vested interest cronyism.

Incompetent Self-Governance: the inability of voters to keep their national legislature filled with legislators who can keep their nation as free of major economic, financial, fiscal and societal problems as it is possible to be.

One Objective Voting Strategy: voters use the NLEP to achieve one objective: decide which political party controls the U.S. House and Senate.

Optimizing legislation: legislation whose purpose is to make one of America's systems operate at its maximum effectiveness, efficiency, health, strength, etc.

PKQ-caliber: capable of governing and legislating with both exceptional competence and exceptional selflessness.

POM rating: the score a potential candidate for Congress receives which rates their purity of motive based on a list of relevant, objective factors (to be determined at a later date).

Self-Serving Legislative Provisions (SSLPs): provisions inserted into legislation for self-serving reasons.

Shared ANI Objectives: objectives that voters of every political and ideological stripe want to see Congress achieve via ANI legislation, i.e., legislation that is neither liberal nor conservative, Democratic or Republican -- e.g., optimized free market system, optimized financial system, optimized healthcare system, etc.

Systems Optimization: the primarily (ANI-based) legislative formulation process used by PKQs to insure that America's major systems operate: 1) free of all forms of government created or sanctioned cronyism, and 2) at their maximum possible health, strength, efficiency, effectiveness, etc.

Systems Optimization and Integration: the seamless integration esp. of systems whose principle responsibility is providing for the welfare, and wellbeing, of society's least able, least capable, lowest marketable skills, etc..

Two Objective Voting Strategy: voters use the NLEP to achieve two objectives:

1. Decide in the primary process which type of Democratic, Republican, etc. candidates will face each other in the General election: PAPs or PKQ-caliber.

2. Decide in the general election which political party will control the U.S. House and Senate.

 
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ABOUT

Name: Montie Rainey
Profession: Retired, 21st century civics curriculum advocate
Education: BS, Mathematics and Computer Science
(University of Illinois at Chicago, 1984)
Misc:

Opinion columnist, The Jackson Sun
(2005-2010)

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