1. DoctorDoom
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    DoctorDoom Member

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    What problems would arise in this governmental system?

    Discussion in 'Setting Development' started by DoctorDoom, Mar 25, 2016.

    I'm writing up summaries of the various governing systems of the nations on my book (its sci-fi) and this one in particular I need outside perspectives on. What flaws do you think would arise given the system? Would it be better or worse than our own or just different? How stable would it be in the long term? (As in the book it had just been set up after a rebellion) what would your opinion of it be if you lived inside of it versus if you were looking at it as an outsider? Would it be allowed to join an organization similar to the UK? Please do not leave a criticism of a particular section without reading all of them for context. Any suggestions for edits and changes are also appreciated. Though the goal is not to create an ideal government, rather one founded in vigilantism that can remain functional over a long period of time.

    https://drive.google.com/open?id=1DwrGzp_0vfGbQy8k0l4fNP5PgUSAwQnfOvOmI6SnwiQ

    If you need the context here is a write up of their culture at it's most basic/barbaric, eg. before the revolution.

    https://drive.google.com/open?id=1InMVSHK2ZiH-JBy4blPJKxgj3GM48hLwrFVKYVQoEw0

    Please note that the culture doc is very much a WIP and does not show a cultural progression through time as of this writing.
     
  2. BayView
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    BayView Contributing Member Contributor

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    I only read part way through the first document. Based on that, it looks like you have a pro-military, pro-execution, fascist state. I'm not going to read all the rest of the content in order to offer suggestions about how this could be a problem in the long term.
     
  3. Wreybies
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    Wreybies The Ops Pops Operations Manager Staff Contest Administrator Supporter Contributor

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    I did read read through the whole thing and I still agree with @BayView. It's a Reactionary government. The laws themselves don't feel too out of whack, but that's not the bigger issue when I think about long-term viability. It seems that your Executive and Judiciary branches of government are one and the same. My personal "bias" (to chime in on a theme your mention) as a Yank is that this is a foundational flaw that will quickly lead to serious issues. There is a missed check for balance.

    I would add that I question this test that's given to prospective leaders as regards their biases. What is the nature of the test? How is it administered. Unless this is some kind of brain-scan, the born cynic in me sees a situation that favors very, very good liars. That's unfortunately not too different from what most governments experience in the real world, but in real world dynamics I definitely think there are people who go into politics with fairness and honesty in mind; I just don't think they tend to survive the filtration process as they move up in the hierarchy of things. I think your test would preclude that.
     
  4. HelloImRex
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    HelloImRex Contributing Member

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    Some of it is interesting, some of it doesn't make sense. I don't think the bias test makes much sense. Nobody wants to be a leader if they don't have opinions, but the people highest up need a score of one or zero. Also, with a society so obsessed with controlling people's thoughts it is odd they allow military grade firearms and capitalism. It seems really socialist/communist with everything else. It's as if the goal was to make a really moderate society, but the way this was done was to make the society really extreme in opposite directions on random issues. Flip a coin, heads. Give everyone bazookas and the right to start a business. Flip a coin, tails. Biased thought no longer allowed and health care is provided by the government. Contradiction is cool, but too much is confusing.

    Anyway, the interesting part is that people aren't considered adults until they pass certain tests. That's a good concept and I think building the society primarily around the education aspect is unique enough to be interesting by itself without being unbelievable after too much stuff is added. If educated citizens were more valuable by law and this scaled up it would make for a society where a lot of philosophical questions on worth could be addressed. Is it fair to give people who have objectively performed better more rights?

    That's my take on it. I'm aware it's pretty biased.
     
  5. DoctorDoom
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    DoctorDoom Member

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    It is 100% a reaction. And yes it does favor really good liars as demonstrated by Agatha's control of the government and BS bias score. The 1-0% bias score qualifier is also a farce as no one can be completely without bias, essentially guaranteeing the current Chief Justices the right to elect whomever they want as their successors. The actual scoring system is based on the IAT published by Harvard University.
     
  6. TheRealStegblob
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    TheRealStegblob Active Member

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    Whoa, whoa. The guy is asking for perspectives on how they'd be bad governments, he's not asking "do you think they'd be bad", no need to snark at him.
     
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  7. BayView
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    BayView Contributing Member Contributor

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    He said he only wanted opinions from people who'd read both of his treatises. I was telling him why he wasn't going to get my opinion - because I wouldn't be reading both treatises. Have you read them? I'm sure he'd value your thoughts on his post more than I'm valuing your thoughts on mine.
     
  8. DoctorDoom
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    DoctorDoom Member

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    Before people start throwing punches let me clarify some things.

    1: I only requested people read the whole first document before leaving comments on a particular section within that document because the sections while individually extreme, are intended to balance each other out when taken as a whole. I am aware of the flaws in each individual section when taken separately, what I'm asking for others opinions on is the system as a whole, all things considered. My point was I don't want anybody wasting their time telling me something I already know.

    2: No fighting please. It does no one a shred of good.

    3: My overarching goal in this is to decide on if I want to slate the government as bad, evil, corrupt, the worst, passable, okay, complicated, a flagrant grey zone or regrettably as a net good.
     
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2016
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  9. Witchymama
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    Witchymama Active Member

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    Wow. I can't see how it's helpful to come onto the thread in which someone is asking for opinions, just to say that they won't be getting your opinion. Couldn't you just not have posted? Just my opinion.
     
  10. BayView
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    BayView Contributing Member Contributor

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    Did you read his ideas? What do you think of them?
     
  11. Witchymama
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    Witchymama Active Member

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    I am still reading through them, giving them the critical thought that they deserve. Any post or poster that comes to this forum deserves the same. If you have no opinion, move on to something you do have an opinion on. It just seems a bit wasteful to me to post on an opinion thread that you won't be giving your opinion.
     
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  12. Witchymama
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    Witchymama Active Member

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    First of all, @DoctorDoom , it looks like you have spent a great deal of time building this world and I applaud that. As far as the governmental system, nothing in it struck me as fascist state. Bearing in mind that I can sometimes be a little dense, I challenged my thought on it and went on a little research kick.

    fas·cism
    ˈfaSHˌizəm/
    noun
    noun: fascism; noun: Fascism; plural noun: Fascisms
    1. an authoritarian and nationalistic right-wing system of government and social organization.
      synonyms: authoritarianism, totalitarianism, dictatorship, despotism, autocracy;More
      Nazism, rightism;
      nationalism, xenophobia, racism, anti-Semitism;
      jingoism, isolationism;
      neofascism, neo-Nazism
      "a film depicting the rise of fascism in the 1930s"
      • (in general use) extreme right-wing, authoritarian, or intolerant views or practice
    Ok, so I re read your document again... What you've described doesn't fit that description to me. Maybe I am still just missing something.

    http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/fascism

    Nope. Still doesn't seem like fascism to me.

    But it does have a touch of meritocracy. There are a few problems that could arise. @Wreybies pointed out that the testing system seems questionable. I will take it a step or too further and say that the bias test, unless done in a method like brain scanning or, possibly psychic scanning would be easy to fake results on; you could feasibly cheat your way to a seat.
    Just for clarity, if I understand correctly, the perfect bias score is zero, but the candidates rarely achieve this, so the lowest score wins? Do I have that right?

    If that's the case then you know that it's not perfect, but it's always changing. To me that's a good thing For a writer to do. It opens up possibilities for you to change the government by introducing lower scoring candidates, thus working towards a more perfect government.

    The culture you have outlined is interesting. I see a wealth of creative potential.
     
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2016
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  13. BayView
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    BayView Contributing Member Contributor

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    "So people generally view Agatha as either justified and non-criminal -in a way that can border on hero-worship- by definition or as an insane, immoral dictator who is only functional because her sister prevents her from doing anything completely depraved." I take the "insane, immoral dictator" approach contemplated by the author him/herself. So... fascism.

    They will deport people to a penal colony for repeated vandalism. They will deport people to a penal colony for assault. They will execute people for willful deception. They will execute people for "unjustified persecution", a poorly defined/definable term. All citizens have a responsibility to report criminal behaviour (no mention of punishment for failure to report, but I'm betting... deportation to a penal colony? Execution?) - so... fascism.
     
  14. Witchymama
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    Witchymama Active Member

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    It is a government that takes care of the problems in that society. Crimes have punishments, it simple, direct and overall, if I read the documents correctly, understood by all the citizens. The civil rights outlined are the perfect presentation of a just, and fair system.
    Did you not read down to where the civil rights are listed? The list of civil rights is double the length of the list of crimes and punishments. And they are fair and quite liberal, in the meritocracy sense.
     
  15. BayView
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    BayView Contributing Member Contributor

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    Okay. Obviously I disagree, but... I don't really care enough to argue about it.
     
  16. Witchymama
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    Witchymama Active Member

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    @DoctorDoom looks like you've got a handle on this. I wanna buy a copy when it's published.
     
  17. DoctorDoom
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    DoctorDoom Member

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    There is quite a lot of duplicity, though I think that stems from the fact that it's a diarchy with one ruler who, if left to their own devices, would run the country like a police state, and the second like a left wing democracy bordering on socialism.
     
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  18. ChickenFreak
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    ChickenFreak Contributing Member Contributor

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    The fact that something is called a "civil right" doesn't make it so or make it a good thing. For example:
    "The victim of a crime has the right to execute the perpetrator first and foremost either immediately at the scene of the crime or later should the perp be sentenced to death."
    sounds like a license to murder anyone, as long as you claim that the person committed a crime against you.

    The bias test seems to be the source of absolutely all rights, so just rewrite the test and people must either lie, or be minors forever. If you can lie, then of course...you can lie. So all of these judges, etc., can be as corrupt as their ability to lie allows.

    The "publication law" could support essentially unlimited censorship of the news.

    I'm really seeing very few civil rights here.
     
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  19. DoctorDoom
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    @ChickenFreak to be fair, under the self defense and proportionality section, as well as under case law, it explains how an allegation doesn't mean anything. Infact, not even witness testimony or victim testimony means anything in regards to determining guilt. It may only be used to find physical evidence which can be scientifically analyzed by a specialized forensic team from each side of the argument. The only things that can be used to determine guilt are facts. And even then, it's not up to some random, uninformed people to decide if they're guilty or not, it's a matter of probability. You won't be sentenced until the probability reaches a certain point. (And that point depends on the crime committed. If it's murder the probability is much higher. If it's a traffic violation it's probably around 75%. But that's minutia I didn't really feel like getting into.) It is only after all this, if the victim waited an obscene amount of time before reporting anything, if the accused is found guilty, that the victim has the right to execute them, or send them to a penal colony, if they so choose. If they execute them without going through this process, that's murder and then they're the one in the hot seat. If the person they killed is found guilty of a crime against them, a crime which is punishable by death, then they're cleared of all relevant charges and probably added to a watch list.

    Is that a good system? Probably not. Is it something the current ruler would put in place? Yes.
     
  20. BayView
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    BayView Contributing Member Contributor

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    So how does all that fit in with the execute-the-person-immediately-at-the-scene-of-the-crime business?

    I mean, this is your book - if the laws in your book are kind of self-contradictory, that's fine - lots of laws are kind of self-contradictory. But your post didn't ask us whether this is the legal system your character would be likely to enact; it asked us for our opinions of the system, its flaws, etc.

    The general impression of most people who've read even part of your setup is that it's not a great system of government. @Witchymama disagrees and wants to take all future vacations in your wonderland of civil rights. And she also wants to buy your book, so... maybe she's your audience!

    But assuming this is background for a book, rather than just a fun "in the perfect world, I would..." type of exercise, you seem to have already come up with the answer you needed, before even asking us. That is:

    "So people generally view Agatha as either justified and non-criminal -in a way that can border on hero-worship- by definition or as an insane, immoral dictator who is only functional because her sister prevents her from doing anything completely depraved."
     
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  21. Witchymama
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    Witchymama Active Member

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    @BayView , excuse me but did I like step on your toes or something by giving my opinion of the original posters FANTASY outline? Or do you just have a vendetta against anyone who expresses an opinion contrary to yours? Either way, your attitude comes off as egotistical and a little bit high school. I was under the impression that we were giving feedback on what FICTIONAL scenarios could arise from this FICTIONAL outline. If you have a problem with me, then air it out somewhere else, or better yet don't. I thought you didn't care didn't care enough about this to argue about it. Obviously you have opinions on everyone's opinions though.
     
  22. Witchymama
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    Witchymama Active Member

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    I read fantasy and scifi more than I read anything else. All of my comments were in context to the setting as I saw it outlined. It is not as hard core totalitarian as some things I have read, and my opinions on this were based on that. If anyone else has different views, I respect that. That being said, Happy Easter, everyone. Eat some ham and be happy.
     
  23. BayView
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    BayView Contributing Member Contributor

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    Dude, chill. You seem to be taking all of this really personally.

    I was going to ignore your opinion altogether in my summary, but that felt rude, so I mentioned it. It's fine for you to have another opinion. I'm not arguing with it. You like the civilization's structure, others don't. I'm not sure how mentioning that makes you feel as if I was arguing with you.

    Is it possible that you think people being critical of the suggested system of government are somehow being critical of the OP as a human being, and you're stepping in to defend him? If so, I think you should re-read the OP - he asked us for our opinions on his system of government. How would it be helpful for him if we lied about our opinions?
     
  24. Witchymama
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    Yo, check it Dude. You made it real personal. Now kindly step off, Dude.
     
  25. DoctorDoom
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    @BayView That is a good point. Typically, if the victim killed the perp at the scene of the crime there would be evidence of the crime that initiated the murder. If they followed the correct protocol and reported the crime and the murder as soon as practicable, didn't tamper with the crime scene as they would have been trained to do in school, they wouldn't be presumed gulty, but they would be put on trial, along with the dead guy and the court would need to find enough evidence to convict the dead guy and, incase there was not (which is unlikely because it's a fresh crime scene and the murderer would gain nothing by trying to destroy evidence unless they were lying) enough evidence to convict the murderer.

    I should also note that they have something 100x worse than the NSA so in all probability the crime would have been caught on at least two cameras.

    Now the greater question then becomes 'why is it that they want citizens to murder criminals' or at the very least why is that legal?

    Because Agatha is a serial killer who grew up in a cult, was physically and psychologically abused by the cult leader (her mother) was more or less brainwashed into thinking she was an irredeemable sadistic psychopath for wanting to kill her mother and only realizing after she killed her and about twenty other cult members (thereby destabilizing the organization and its hold on the media and general population) that it was all a load of poppycock. Everyone wanted to kill her mother and everyone couldn't be a psychopath so she hadn't crossed the line. So killing evil people wasn't crossing the line so since she did enjoy killing all those cult members, she could continue ridding the world of evil scum bags and she was basically doing the world a favor. Since their culture was basically ruled by a cult with practices way worse than the crap ISIS tries to pull, that's a lot of people to kill. And as these things tend to do, what was once a personal revenge plot snowballs into a rebellion and twenty years later you have the above government that's way better than the previous government but still designed and run by a, to use the TV trope, sadistic Knight Templar and their morality pet.

    Hell to the no, this is not an 'in an ideal world' exercise, if anything it's a 'in a crapsack world what's the best outcome you could reasonably achieve?'

    You seem to doubt my need for feedback. Well, the book I'm currently working on is about how such a system would interact with other cultures and nations, and for that I need to know what different people think of the system so I have something to model the reactions off of. If someone likes it, great. If someone thinks it's worse than Nazi Germany, great. I don't want people to agree on it, I just want to know their fully informed unfiltered opinions. That's the point of the thread.

    So please, @Witchymama and @BayView
    if someone is being argumentative, snippy or in your opinion annoying, please either ignore it or at the very least avoid attacking each other. If you want to debate, fine, debate is good, but don't start a flame war.
     
    Last edited: Mar 27, 2016
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