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Author Topic: Reform Proposals and Discussion  (Read 2304 times)

Offline Gulliver

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Reform Proposals and Discussion
« on: December 02, 2015, 11:07:51 PM »
While it is clear that many people would like to see changes, there has been very little concrete proposals and discussions. I hope that thread will change this and get us moving forward again.

If you have a proposal for reform, post it in this thread. You and others may then discuss such proposals.

If a proposal or related set of proposals generate enough talk, I will open a new thread for it with an accompanying poll for possible options. Debate specific to that topic will continue there, while the poll will be used as a concrete measure of what option has the broadest support.

You will be able to change your vote in these polls, and as the debate progresses it may change if people propose substantially new options. I will post if a new option is added, so remember to check. You might also just change your opinion as the debate progresses.

Hopefully, we can synthesize the results of these individual polls and debates into a final proposal that is largely acceptable.

If you think this plan of attack needs to be tweaked, let me know.



To get us started, I would like to make a proposals of my own.

I believe our multiple domestic offices (editor, dean, liaison) should be combined into a single elected office with appointed deputies, or whatever you want to call them.

This I'm less sure of, but I think it warrants debate. Currently we have two offices which deal with in-game matters, the Citizen-Delegate for diplomacy and the Citizen-Sergeant for military affairs. We could combine these into a single, foreign affairs/gamplay office.

Offline AwesomeSaucer

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Re: Reform Proposals and Discussion
« Reply #1 on: December 03, 2015, 12:29:04 AM »
Don't we already have the Constitutional Convention thread?  Or is this a more general-purpose board?

Perhaps we could use this thread to spitball ideas, and the Convention thread to actually pen the winning ideas into the new Constitution?  Sound good with you guys?  :)
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Offline Sovereign Dixie

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Re: Reform Proposals and Discussion
« Reply #2 on: December 03, 2015, 01:27:44 AM »
Don't we already have the Constitutional Convention thread?  Or is this a more general-purpose board?

Perhaps we could use this thread to spitball ideas, and the Convention thread to actually pen the winning ideas into the new Constitution?  Sound good with you guys?  :)

That's basically what Gulliver is saying.

Fighting a bloody toothache right now. Will introduce some ideas when I feel better. Be it in a few hours or in the next day or so.


Offline Prydania

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Re: Reform Proposals and Discussion
« Reply #3 on: December 03, 2015, 04:22:51 AM »
I would like to see a triumvirate of sorts. Split the executive into three offices.

The Delegate would serve as the head of state and primarily deal with foreign affairs.

A Minister of Internal Affairs (or whatever we want to call it) would deal with recruitment and cultural issues. This would be close to what Gulliver is saying, as this post oversee the duties currently overseen by the editor, liaison, and dean. As well as oversee recruitment and propaganda.

A Minister of Defence (or whatever we want to call it) would deal with the military.

All would be elected by popular vote.



Now here's where I would put the much-discussed "guild" system. Though I don't think that should be the term we use if it's adopted. It has a different sort of connotation. I prefer "committee system" myself.
Each of the three elected officials would have the ability to appoint deputies to aid them in whatever way the officers deemed necessary. These deputies could, in turn, request that they be given a "sub deputy" themselves to help them out. This would create a sort of "fluid cabinet." No two MoIA, for example, would have the same "committee" layout. A MoIA who is strong in the field of recruitment but weak when it comes to propaganda would have a different committee layout then a MoIA who has the opposite strengths and weaknesses.

It would also provide training of sorts. People could be introduced to the field they're interested in at the sub-deputy level and work their way up to becoming a deputy. Which could prepare them for a run at the office in question themselves. This also adds a gameplay mechanic. Players (citizens) now have clear "career" paths open to them in the region. Something to progress to.



It's in that spirit that I propose one last thing. A return to the original Taijitu Senate model. Gulliver has described it as a direct democratic system. I have described it as a representative democratic system. Which tells me it's the ideal compromise between the two camps :)
The Senate (or Ecclesia, Parliament, Grand Council of Water Buffaloes, whatever we end up calling it) would be open to all citizens of Taijitu. Yet being a citizen wouldn't make you a senator automatically. The Senate would interview citizens applying to it and vote in private to determine whether or not that person's application has been accepted.

The interview process is multi-layered.
At first glance it again provides a gameplay function. Advancement. Citizens looking to engage politically would see the application as a means for advancing themselves in a gameplay sense.
It's also a bit of fun. Those who remember that system know that the questionnaire all applicants needed to fill out was a mix of serious questions with some fun stuff thrown in. It was lighthearted, and a means to get to know a new applicant.
It could also be used to run security checks on applicants to ensure that the applicant isn't someone looking to undermine the region.
Players, ideally, wouldn't be denied unless the security check turned something up or their application made it abundantly clear they had no idea what they were doing. It's a system that I honestly feel embodies the best of both the representative and direct democratic models.

The only question is who forms the first "Senate" should the system be adopted? I would say that everyone who helps draft the new reforms (be they in the form of amendments to the current constitution, new legislation, or a new constitution all together) should be offered a seat in the new legislative body. People would be free to turn them down if they wanted, but those that don't would form the first session of the Ecclesia/Senate/whatever under the new system.
Anyone after all that would apply as per the process.



On the courts...I think having a separate court system is too layered, especially for a region of our size. I would propose that the legislator serve as "supreme court" should the need arise.
« Last Edit: December 03, 2015, 04:25:18 AM by Prydania »

Offline Khem

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Re: Reform Proposals and Discussion
« Reply #4 on: December 03, 2015, 04:54:18 AM »
I would like to see a triumvirate of sorts. Split the executive into three offices.

The Delegate would serve as the head of state and primarily deal with foreign affairs.

A Minister of Internal Affairs (or whatever we want to call it) would deal with recruitment and cultural issues. This would be close to what Gulliver is saying, as this post oversee the duties currently overseen by the editor, liaison, and dean. As well as oversee recruitment and propaganda.

A Minister of Defence (or whatever we want to call it) would deal with the military.

All would be elected by popular vote.



Now here's where I would put the much-discussed "guild" system. Though I don't think that should be the term we use if it's adopted. It has a different sort of connotation. I prefer "committee system" myself.
Each of the three elected officials would have the ability to appoint deputies to aid them in whatever way the officers deemed necessary. These deputies could, in turn, request that they be given a "sub deputy" themselves to help them out. This would create a sort of "fluid cabinet." No two MoIA, for example, would have the same "committee" layout. A MoIA who is strong in the field of recruitment but weak when it comes to propaganda would have a different committee layout then a MoIA who has the opposite strengths and weaknesses.

It would also provide training of sorts. People could be introduced to the field they're interested in at the sub-deputy level and work their way up to becoming a deputy. Which could prepare them for a run at the office in question themselves. This also adds a gameplay mechanic. Players (citizens) now have clear "career" paths open to them in the region. Something to progress to.



It's in that spirit that I propose one last thing. A return to the original Taijitu Senate model. Gulliver has described it as a direct democratic system. I have described it as a representative democratic system. Which tells me it's the ideal compromise between the two camps :)
The Senate (or Ecclesia, Parliament, Grand Council of Water Buffaloes, whatever we end up calling it) would be open to all citizens of Taijitu. Yet being a citizen wouldn't make you a senator automatically. The Senate would interview citizens applying to it and vote in private to determine whether or not that person's application has been accepted.

The interview process is multi-layered.
At first glance it again provides a gameplay function. Advancement. Citizens looking to engage politically would see the application as a means for advancing themselves in a gameplay sense.
It's also a bit of fun. Those who remember that system know that the questionnaire all applicants needed to fill out was a mix of serious questions with some fun stuff thrown in. It was lighthearted, and a means to get to know a new applicant.
It could also be used to run security checks on applicants to ensure that the applicant isn't someone looking to undermine the region.
Players, ideally, wouldn't be denied unless the security check turned something up or their application made it abundantly clear they had no idea what they were doing. It's a system that I honestly feel embodies the best of both the representative and direct democratic models.

The only question is who forms the first "Senate" should the system be adopted? I would say that everyone who helps draft the new reforms (be they in the form of amendments to the current constitution, new legislation, or a new constitution all together) should be offered a seat in the new legislative body. People would be free to turn them down if they wanted, but those that don't would form the first session of the Ecclesia/Senate/whatever under the new system.
Anyone after all that would apply as per the process.



On the courts...I think having a separate court system is too layered, especially for a region of our size. I would propose that the legislator serve as "supreme court" should the need arise.
This sums up pretty much all I had been thinking for a new system. I'm glad our discussions have yielded this.

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Offline AwesomeSaucer

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Re: Reform Proposals and Discussion
« Reply #5 on: December 03, 2015, 12:54:22 PM »
So, there are good ideas here, and some that I may not agree with.  Here's what I think.

We should adopt a Guild system (or committee system) for certain fields, such as military, gameplay, community, statistics, accounting, worldbuilding, etc.  However, the way we get people in the committees is the exact same way we got people into the old Senate: through admitting applications.  This makes the committees themselves more fluid and open for anyone, and takes care of any possible corruption of appointing people.

The committees, by default, are laid in a cooperative, horizontal model where actions are made through bringing any idea to a vote.  Again, this removes corruption.  To help with introducing people to any committee, for the first month after someone is appointed to a new committee, they are in a "Member in Training" or "MiT" position.  In the MiT position, one member of the guild trains the new member on how the committee works, the culture, the technology, etc.  They can influence decision, but they cannot make a vote until they become full members.

Speaking of training, one of the guilds would certainly be of Mentors.  They would work in a fashion similar to what Orri proposed, with Mentors giving all new citizens a forum PM to schedule an IRC meeting to walk the new user through the forums and community.

Perhaps the most important committee of all is the applications committee.  Members of that committee would be the ones to accept, deny, or request more information from any applicant.  To be a member of this committee, you must have served on any other committee relating to some form of domestic politics first.

One notable aspect of the applications committee is electing a head Judge.  The Judge would be leading the applications guild, reviewing some domestic politics, and would act as a de facto Head of Government.  The judge can appoint anyone temporarily or permanently to help for any domestic reason.

Another important guild would be the relations guild, which focuses on NS gameplay.  They would elect the Delegate, and he or she could also appoint anyone for any foreign politics reason.

A "career path" still exists in this system, as a general rule of thumb would be to become a citizen, join a committee, join the applications or relations committee, become an appointee of the Delegate or Judge, and become the Delegate or Judge themselves.

The Ecclesia/Senate/Congress/whatever would either be completely direct (everyone is automatically in), but as Taijitu grows larger, maybe a better system will eventually be to have anyone in a committee automatically put into the legislature.
« Last Edit: December 03, 2015, 01:03:06 PM by AwesomeSaucer »
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Offline Sovereign Dixie

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Re: Reform Proposals and Discussion
« Reply #6 on: December 04, 2015, 01:07:38 AM »
I agree with the sentiments of Prydania and Khem.


Offline AwesomeSaucer

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Re: Reform Proposals and Discussion
« Reply #7 on: December 04, 2015, 01:28:45 AM »
I agree with the sentiments of Prydania and Khem.
Great!  Our proposals seem to only have minor differences, so it appears we have come to a semi-consensus!  :D

Shall we begin constitutional drafting?
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Offline Khem

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Re: Reform Proposals and Discussion
« Reply #8 on: December 04, 2015, 02:58:17 AM »
Yes, I could start  framing such into a legal form tomorrow.

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Offline Gulliver

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Re: Reform Proposals and Discussion
« Reply #9 on: December 04, 2015, 08:24:20 AM »
Quote from: Prydania
I would like to see a triumvirate of sorts. Split the executive into three offices.

The Delegate would serve as the head of state and primarily deal with foreign affairs.

A Minister of Internal Affairs (or whatever we want to call it) would deal with recruitment and cultural issues. This would be close to what Gulliver is saying, as this post oversee the duties currently overseen by the editor, liaison, and dean. As well as oversee recruitment and propaganda.

A Minister of Defence (or whatever we want to call it) would deal with the military.

All would be elected by popular vote.

Now here's where I would put the much-discussed "guild" system. Though I don't think that should be the term we use if it's adopted. It has a different sort of connotation. I prefer "committee system" myself.
Each of the three elected officials would have the ability to appoint deputies to aid them in whatever way the officers deemed necessary. These deputies could, in turn, request that they be given a "sub deputy" themselves to help them out. This would create a sort of "fluid cabinet." No two MoIA, for example, would have the same "committee" layout. A MoIA who is strong in the field of recruitment but weak when it comes to propaganda would have a different committee layout then a MoIA who has the opposite strengths and weaknesses.

It would also provide training of sorts. People could be introduced to the field they're interested in at the sub-deputy level and work their way up to becoming a deputy. Which could prepare them for a run at the office in question themselves. This also adds a gameplay mechanic. Players (citizens) now have clear "career" paths open to them in the region. Something to progress to.
This sounds like what we already have, albeit it with less offices, a poly-personal executive with appointed sub-officers. Were there any other key differences you had in mind?

Quote from: Prydania
It's in that spirit that I propose one last thing. A return to the original Taijitu Senate model.
I prefer the current model. It's simple and too the point. Reintroducing interviews seems like just an additional barrier that's makework.

Quote from: Prydania
The Senate (or Ecclesia, Parliament, Grand Council of Water Buffaloes, whatever we end up calling it)
I would strongly prefer that we retain the name "Ecclesia". It is a unique, distinctly Taijituan name, whereas there are about 500 other senates floating around NationStates.

Quote from: Prydania
The only question is who forms the first "Senate" should the system be adopted? I would say that everyone who helps draft the new reforms (be they in the form of amendments to the current constitution, new legislation, or a new constitution all together) should be offered a seat in the new legislative body. People would be free to turn them down if they wanted, but those that don't would form the first session of the Ecclesia/Senate/whatever under the new system.
I think a simpler solution would be to just not dissolve the Ecclesia, even if it's reformed, so that the old membership just automatically carries over.

Quote from: Prydania
On the courts...I think having a separate court system is too layered, especially for a region of our size. I would propose that the legislator serve as "supreme court" should the need arise.
I don't think we need a formal criminal court just yet, but some mechanism for interpreting the law and constitution will probably be useful.

Offline Khem

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Re: Reform Proposals and Discussion
« Reply #10 on: December 04, 2015, 03:57:56 PM »
Okay so far from complete but just what I have written thus far to keep y'all in the loop. How do you feel about the structure of blank areas?

Quote from: Constitution Rough Draft
1. Executive.
1.1. The executive will consist of a triumvirate, with authority balanced between the three offices.
1.2. The Triumvirate will consist of three regional officers. Delegate, Domestic and Military.
1.3.The office of Delegate will act as head of state, dealing with diplomacy, embassies, treaties and general foreign affairs.
1.4. The office of Domestic will act as head of the cultural offices, dealing with recruitment, cultural events, community integration, newspaper, college and general internal affairs.
1.5. The office of Military will act as the head of military operations, dealing with military things, policy, ranks, other things.
 
2. Responsibilities and powers of the executive.

3. Election methodology.

4. Committee Structure
4.1. Deputies of Executive heading committees.
4.2. Each establishing unique structure.
4.3. Deputies shall open each committee membership to all Citizens. Allowing for an egalitarian or lateral structure as dictated by the appointed Deputy.
4.4. self determination.

5. Legislative
5.1. Liquid Democratic Model

6. Criminal Code/Judiciary
6.1. Don’t be a dick.
6.2. Follow the TOS.
6.3. Don’t work against your friends bro.
6.4. In event of a trial, the executive should act as judges.

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Offline AwesomeSaucer

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Re: Reform Proposals and Discussion
« Reply #11 on: December 04, 2015, 06:12:44 PM »
Okay so far from complete but just what I have written thus far to keep y'all in the loop. How do you feel about the structure of blank areas?

Quote from: Constitution Rough Draft
1. Executive.
1.1. The executive will consist of a triumvirate, with authority balanced between the three offices.
1.2. The Triumvirate will consist of three regional officers. Delegate, Domestic and Military.
1.3.The office of Delegate will act as head of state, dealing with diplomacy, embassies, treaties and general foreign affairs.
1.4. The office of Domestic will act as head of the cultural offices, dealing with recruitment, cultural events, community integration, newspaper, college and general internal affairs.
1.5. The office of Military will act as the head of military operations, dealing with military things, policy, ranks, other things.
 
2. Responsibilities and powers of the executive.

3. Election methodology.

4. Committee Structure
4.1. Deputies of Executive heading committees.
4.2. Each establishing unique structure.
4.3. Deputies shall open each committee membership to all Citizens. Allowing for an egalitarian or lateral structure as dictated by the appointed Deputy.
4.4. self determination.

5. Legislative
5.1. Liquid Democratic Model

6. Criminal Code/Judiciary
6.1. Don’t be a dick.
6.2. Follow the TOS.
6.3. Don’t work against your friends bro.
6.4. In event of a trial, the executive should act as judges.
Please post constitutional drafts in the constitutional convention thread here:)
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Offline Bustos

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Re: Reform Proposals and Discussion
« Reply #12 on: December 04, 2015, 06:22:04 PM »
Quote
It's in that spirit that I propose one last thing. A return to the original Taijitu Senate model. Gulliver has described it as a direct democratic system.

If I remember correctly, the old model basically accepted all who applied anyway.  The current system, skips that step.


Quote from: Constitution Rough Draft
1. Executive.
1.1. The executive will consist of a triumvirate, with authority balanced between the three offices.
1.2. The Triumvirate will consist of three regional officers. Delegate, Domestic and Military.
1.3.The office of Delegate will act as head of state, dealing with diplomacy, embassies, treaties and general foreign affairs.
1.4. The office of Domestic will act as head of the cultural offices, dealing with recruitment, cultural events, community integration, newspaper, college and general internal affairs.
1.5. The office of Military will act as the head of military operations, dealing with military things, policy, ranks, other things.
 
2. Responsibilities and powers of the executive.

3. Election methodology.

4. Committee Structure
4.1. Deputies of Executive heading committees.
4.2. Each establishing unique structure.
4.3. Deputies shall open each committee membership to all Citizens. Allowing for an egalitarian or lateral structure as dictated by the appointed Deputy.
4.4. self determination.

5. Legislative
5.1. Liquid Democratic Model

6. Criminal Code/Judiciary
6.1. Don’t be a dick.
6.2. Follow the TOS.
6.3. Don’t work against your friends bro.
6.4. In event of a trial, the executive should act as judges.

What if a member(s) of the executive is on trial?  3 executives, one on trial makes 2 available, and if they tie, etc?  Just a thought.

Will this abolish all other officer positions?
« Last Edit: December 04, 2015, 06:28:37 PM by Bustos »
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Offline Red Mones

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Re: Reform Proposals and Discussion
« Reply #13 on: December 04, 2015, 06:27:33 PM »
I agree with Gulliver that we should keep the name Ecclesia.

Offline Prydania

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Re: Reform Proposals and Discussion
« Reply #14 on: December 05, 2015, 12:18:49 AM »
Names are, ultimately, window dressing.