Australian Egalitarian Movement :: Offering a Socialist Political Alternative

Australian Egalitarian Movement


Home > Major Policies > The Democratic and Undemocratic Nature of the AEM's Egalitarian Society 


Home Page

Our Mission

About the AEM

Our Major Policies
and Explanations

Questions & Answers

Current Affairs

Join the AEM
FREE Membership

Contact Us





The Democratic and Undemocratic Nature of the AEM's Egalitarian Society

Although the AEM intends to create a substantially more democratic society than anyone has ever seen before, the AEM does not support the ideal of democratically elected governments. As we will discuss shortly, this is because of the overwhelming and totally unacceptable problems that are created by it, and because it is prone to placing the wrong people into positions of power. As such, the AEM has designed a completely different type of democracy, whereby citizens vote for ideas, policies, and laws rather than for people.

However, should you not like or disagree with the democratic system that the AEM is proposing, don't let it influence you in supporting Egalitarianism or the AEM because 10 years after the AEM successfully changes the constitution to Egalitarianism, you will be able to change back to the contemporary democratic system if more than 50% of the voting population vote against the AEM's democratic system. So you have nothing to fear. Further, we feel that since the change to Egalitarianism requires such a big economic and social re-arrangement, it is not unreasonable to suspend elections for 10 years while installing Egalitarianism, which will allow the AEM the opportunity to demonstrate how much better our version of democracy is, so that you are better informed when making a decision about which democratic system to support. In fact, we only tell you about what we think of the contemporary democratic system from the outset, rather than bring it up after we have successfully changed the constitution to Egalitarianism, so that we cannot be accused of deceiving the public about this issue and our intentions.

Before we discuss how the AEM intends to fill positions of leadership and power, it might be sensible if we first briefly mention some of the more prominent of problems associated with the contemporary version of democracy, which we are attempting to overcome. Very suspiciously, but not surprisingly, these blatantly serious problems are rarely mentioned in the media or by political parties. Instead, the concept of democratically electing governments is continually reaffirmed as being a godsend, which serves to encourage responsible management of the society, and which prevents the citizens from being oppressed by ruthless leaders. This is part of the process of hegemony (briefly discussed in our 'How the Existing Culture Shapes the Values, Beliefs, Desires, Fears, Fantasies, and Ambitions of the People, and How this Serves to Reproduce the Culture and Its Social Problems' web page), which is deliberately employed by most types of leadership to condition the people into believing that the contemporary form of rule is the best, when it is not. However, just the fact that our society continues to experience such things as unemployment, homelessness, a growing gap between the rich and the poor, suicides, poverty, property crime, heroin addiction, under-funding of social services, and many other social (and economic) problems, indicates that democratically elected governments are not able to cope with, or are unwilling to remedy such social problems. That is, the process of democratically electing governments does not appear to be living up to what its supporters claim. The AEM's Egalitarian government can do much, much better than this. In fact, we can stop the reproduction of, or greatly reduce all of these social problems, while also improving the economic efficiency of the nation.

Some of the Unacceptable Problems Associated with Democratically Elected Governments
The AEM (and many others) sees that the contemporary version of democracy....

  • motivates governments to make irresponsible decisions, manipulate the truth, and lie in order to gain (often temporary) public approval or economic gain (as part of the process of being re-elected).
  • motivates governments to pander to the interests of the majority, which is not leadership, but irresponsible behaviour conducted by people who will do anything to gain or maintain positions of power. The majority is no more intrinsically good or right than any other self-interested group of people, which means that finding out what the majority wants is often a poor way of determining the best action to take, or the best policy to create. Generally, the majority is just as greedy and self-indulgent as any elite person is, and particularly so within a capitalist society where everybody has to look out for number one. In actual fact, it is a type of domination, which supports the philosophy of 'bigger is better', or 'to be the strongest is to be the most right'. And this has never been right.
  • motivates governments to economically disadvantage minority groups so that the wrath of the voting majority is not stirred up by having to pay more tax to fund social services or to remedy a social problem (as part of the process of being re-elected).
  • motivates governments to shamelessly blame the victims of their social mismanagement and the dysfunctional constitution (and to encourage the public to think likewise) rather than to commit political suicide by acknowledging responsibility, blame, negligence, or incompetence as part of process of maintaining a credible public-image (as part of the process of being re-elected). Denial is also a great way of saving the government money that would be required to fix up their, or a previous government's mess. To say this another way, our contemporary version of democracy motivates governments to emotionally manipulate and deceive voters so that they support the government's policies or laws relating to how it deals with people associated with social problems.
  • motivates governments to ignore one or one's grievances if they don't see many votes being won or lost by doing so, particularly if one is only an individual or part of a minority group.
  • tends to motivate governments to think in terms of short-term gains, rather than the long-term effects (as part of the process of being re-elected in 3 years time). Also, governments do not appreciate later governments reaping the rewards of the present government's long-term plans, thereby making these later governments look better than they are, and therefore more likely to stay in power. Thinking in terms of short-term benefits is actually a very serious problem, not just because the best strategies for improving the society require long-term plans, but also because it underwrites a large number of social and environmental problems (See one example in the next paragraph). But this problem is not restricted to governments, as the managers of companies (particularly those who are elected to the board) and even private individuals are continuously inspired by our capitalist culture to think in terms of short-term gains and to always be on the look out for a quick buck. And this also motivates government to allow people to extract and sell off our non-renewable resources now rather than make them last for as long as possible.
  • motivates local, regional, and federal governments to sell off natural environments to developers in order to raise revenue, in an attempt to appear economically successful (as part of the process of being re-elected). This process starts a cycle of selling off natural environments because the next government needs to do a similar thing in order to look as economically successful as the previous government, or the government needs to do a similar thing in order to look as successful as it was during its previous term of office. This is a process that will never end, and as such, we can look forward to most of our inland and costal natural environments going the same way.
  • exists within a context in which the media suppresses other political viewpoints. That is, when only a few political parties, and particularly the government, have the only, or the greatest voice in the media, democracy is being suppressed. And this doesn't just mean at election time: it means all the time. Quite simply, there are many viewpoints about most issues that we have never heard about, and therefore we have never had the opportunity to consider them. This is suppression. If we are going to be a well thought out and rational culture, these other arguments should have representation and be argued out. Media companies often suppress other viewpoints because they have their own political agenda and their own economic self-interests to consider. This is particularly so when it comes to challenges to the contemporary capitalist constitution that is serving to make the owners of media companies extremely rich and powerful. Sometimes, even the opposition in parliament may not receive much of a voice in the media about a particular issue. Suppression in the media also works in another way. That is, it costs lots of money to gain airtime, and at election time smaller political parties and independent candidates can't afford to run media campaigns, and as such nobody knows what they represent or what their arguments are when they go to the polls. Often, we don't even know that they exist until we see their name on the voting form. Typically, people stick with what they know, and this is even more likely in the absence of any knowledge about what these alternative politicians represent (which of course, is the plan).
  • prevents other political parties from forming. That is, our two major parties have conspired together to pass laws declaring that political organisations now need at least 500 members before they can be legally registered as a political party and compete in elections. This may not seem like a difficult task to achieve, but unless this political organisation has enough financial backing to advertise and inform the public about its existence and what it represents, gaining 500 members is extremely difficult to achieve. And without being able to advertise and inform, a political organisation can only rely upon potential members discovering it by accident, and this serves to keep people with similar political philosophies isolated and un-united (which of course was the reason for such laws). As such, the existing political parties continue unchallenged to dominate Australian politics.
  • forces one to join one of the major parties to hold any hope of making a change to one's society. This means that one has to agree to a whole range of issues that one may not agree with, just to get a voice, thereby strengthening the party's policies and ideologies within society. And this serves to reduce one's chances of changing the society even when one joins a major political party. Also, if you happen to be an independent politician who doesn't believe in political parties (for good reasons), then it doesn't matter how good you are at managing the country, you will never even look like becoming the leader of government (or the Head of State) because the nature of our democratic system favours politicians who unite together to win government by being the biggest political party.
  • favours big business, who are more able to entice most normal, revenue-hungry governments with the potential to acquire large revenues and help reduce unemployment. This is a problem created by democratically elected governments having to raise revenue via taxes (which won't occur in the AEM's Egalitarian society). The end result is that governments are willing to please bigger tax payers (or potentially bigger tax payers) more than they are willing to please small tax payers (i.e. individual citizens). Governments will even offer massive tax concessions just to secure the deal. As such, when big businesses unite together, they can influence the laws and policies that governments make much more than a group of citizens or a number of smaller companies can, and this is one of the reasons why our laws and policies have always, and will continue to always favour big businesses, which of course was the plan when our democratic system was created by powerful capitalists. Some political parties (e.g. the Liberals) actually represent the big end of town. This is like putting big businesses' own people in power to deliberately influence the laws and policies of the state to favour the economic interests of big business.
  • allows big companies to influence the policies of political parties by offering big donations or some other political benefits because political parties rely upon donations to compete against each other.
  • makes the problem of big business influencing political processes much worse because most of our political leaders are also owners or shareholders of big businesses. Such politicians are not likely to be working on behalf of the people that they are supposed to be representing, and are instead more likely to be working on behalf of their own economic interests in business.
  • which allows politicians to receive a very high salary, also tends to lure politicians who are working on behalf of their own economic interests, and not on behalf of the citizens they are supposed to be representing. Higher wages means that politicians are not living under the same conditions as the majority of citizens they as supposed to be representing (and nor do they intend to), and therefore they are not likely to make policies and laws that favour the majority of the people they represent. Instead, they are likely to make laws and policies that favour the type of people they are (i.e. economic elites).
  • particularly within a competitive capitalist state, where we are all motivated to justify why we should receive more for our labour, motivates politicians to exploit their position and their power and their greater public voice (to promote the importance and the social status of the position they hold), which in turn serves to justify wage increases for politicians, and people with similar skills (eg. managers). As we have discussed in our 'Why We Know that All Elitist Societies are Invalid' web page, promoting the value of those skills or conditions required for leadership is how elitism begins.
  • motivates governments to tamper with electoral boundaries so that opposition support is more confined or more diffused.
  • events such as winning a war are used by governments to win elections when there is a range of domestic economic and social problems that have been neglected or dealt with poorly by the government, and which are far more important to the lives of the voting public. This is actually a problem associated with the voting (and consuming) public who appear to be very easy to manipulate and display a lack of critical thinking beyond what is discussed in the media at the time. And governments are aware of this and use it to their advantage. This problem also extends to election campaigns of governments and other political parties that revolve around specific issues such as the selling off of Telstra, the GST, or illegal immigration, which divert the voting public's attention away from what they should really be more concerned about (e.g. unemployment, aboriginal poverty, foreign debt, trade debt, under funding of education, inflation). This won't occur in the AEM's Egalitarian society because citizens vote on various issues separately.
  • suppresses democracy because when people vote on a particular issue (e.g. economic reliability), they are dictated to on most other issues, such as abortion, legalised injection rooms, the legal status of marijuana usage, politicians wages, and how governments deal with problems such as passive smoking, pollution, immigration, refugees, and land clearing. There is no reason why these issues cannot be voted upon by the people. That they are not voted upon is to be politically dominated.
  • encourages governments to produce only one economically responsible budget in three. The first year's budget is based upon the promises made in the lead up to the election, and the third year's budget is designed to win the coming election. This leaves only the second year's budget to get the economy back in shape.
  • encourages, if not forces politicians to continuously partake in self-promotion (in many different ways) as part of the continuous process of maintaining a public-image of being reliable, committed, and a winner (as part of the process of being re-elected). As such, our contemporary democratic process delivers to us politicians who are better at self-promotion and better at creating a credible public-image than politicians who are actually working to improve social standards, improve our justice system, make responsible decisions, or working on behalf of the citizens that they represent. We will discuss this issue more, later.
  • both of the major political parties and most of the other political parties end up looking very similar to each other, which, ironically, is because they are in competition with each other and because this competition is often dictated by public opinion. Political parties are like competing television stations such as channel seven and channel nine. They both have very similar programming and select ideas from the same bag of tricks, and if one does something that gains ratings, the other is sure to follow. It is a similar story for political parties. In fact, it is an extremely common event for a political party to accuse another party or the government of stealing their policies. Currently, all political parties work within the context of capitalism, which they support, and they are therefore doomed to try the same old things, and to proffer similar poor solutions to the same old problems in a society that is made unnecessarily complex by economic stratification. And opposition to these poor solutions is hard to mount when the major opposition parties did a similar thing when they were in power, and this situation also serves to keep political parties looking similar to each other. And this serves to reproduce our society and its social problems. See our 'On Social Problems' web page to find out how differently the AEM deals with many social problems (when applicable).
  • no matter how many political parties we have, the outcome of an election is always highly unsatisfactory. Currently, Australian politics, like in many other so-called democratic societies, is dominated by two political parties. As such, the vast majority of voters perceive that to vote for a minor party or an independent candidate is to waste or weaken their votes. And this serves to maintain the two major party's domination of Australian politics, even when the governments of both major parties repeatedly fail to solve existing social problems and fail to achieve the goals they claimed that they would achieve in their election campaigns. As such, two-party politics can hardly be considered democratic, and is instead a bipartisan monopoly on power. However, if Australia has three or more major political parties (that don't form coalitions), then a party could win 35% (and less) of the vote and still win government, which means that over 65% of the voting population do not want the party that won government in government. And this in turn serves to persuade voters to return to voting for one of two major parties. So, it doesn't matter how many major political parties we have, the concept of democratically elected governments is highly problematic in that it tends to keep power switching back and forth between two parties or it doesn't satisfy the majority of voters.
  • leaves the door wide open for corruption. This is a problem that is associated with capitalism. For example, how do we know that a politician is not secretly receiving kickbacks for awarding wealthy government contracts to certain companies, unless we catch them at it. We don't know, and we never will know each and every time another government contract is awarded, or every time a decision is made that advantages or disadvantages certain groups of people or businesses within the society. And if this type of corruption can occur in government, then we increase the potential for corruption with every regional and local government. In the AEM's Egalitarian society, this is not an issue because the state owns all of the nation's businesses and politicians cannot receive any more money than anybody else, no matter what decisions they make.
We will discuss some of these problems in the next section.

The AEM also sees that the contemporary network of local, regional, and federal governments serves to create another set of unacceptable social problems, inhibits flexibility, and is unnecessary within an Egalitarian society. Further, all the problems that we have just discussed, and those problems that we are about to discuss are multiplied by the how many local and regional governments there are. See our 'A Centralised Administration' web page for an explanation about the advantages that are created by discontinuing local and regional governments.

The Contemporary Version of Democracy Serves to Place the Wrong People in Power
The AEM believes that the contemporary form of democracy delivers to us the wrong people for the job every time. This is because the contemporary democratic process generally serves to place ambitious people who crave or desire power in positions of power. This is akin to allowing alcoholics to be in charge of alcohol, or allowing paedophiles to be in charge of children. As such, we say that the last people you want in power are people who crave power, or rather people who desire to be empowered in relation to other people. Unfortunately, these people can't ever be trusted to not abuse their position to acquire what they crave. As we have discussed in our 'Why We Know that All Elitist Societies are Invalid' web page, people craving and abusing their power is why we have economically, materially, and socially stratified societies in the first place. That is, people who crave power usually crave it because they desire to be economically, materially, and/or socially elite. As such, the beginnings of social injustice and disadvantage begins by having people who crave power in control of the law and policy-making processes, and unfortunately our contemporary democratic process invites and favours people (and institutions) who crave power (which we will discuss more, shortly). As such, we are openly inviting these people (and institutions) to socially, economically, and politically dominate us.

Further, the elite wages of politicians serves to nurture elitism in general. When we take away these elite wages from politicians, we remove their economic incentive to support elitism (if they also do not have any economic interests in businesses). However, within this elitist environment, we also have no choice but to allow these power-craving politicians to determine for themselves how well they shall be rewarded for their efforts, which is the recipe for economic domination, and why the wages of politicians keep rising in relation to the average wage. However, in our contemporary democratic-capitalist society (as in other materially and/or socially stratified societies), acquiring, securing, and abusing one's power for self-interested reasons are norms, and the only sensible thing to do if one can manage it. We in the AEM also believes that the minute you allow certain people to have more wealth and privileges than others, ruthless people (and institutions) will do whatever they have to in order to be and remain one of these elite people, and because they are prepared to be more ruthless, they will usually out compete those who are less ruthless. Therefore, the elite wages of politicians  serve to seduce the wrong people for the job (i.e. ruthless people who will do whatever they have to in order to gain and maintain these powerful positions). And when ruthless people are also in charge of the society, injustices and inequalities ensue. So once again we say that by employing the contemporary democratic process, we are asking to be dominated and disadvantaged. This is why the AEM insists that in order to stop being economically and socially disadvantaged, we need to prevent people (and institutions) who crave power from gaining positions of power. Therefore, we need to select the people for positions of leadership in a different way.

There are other reasons why the contemporary democratic process places the wrong people in power, which you will read about as you proceed through this web page.

So, how does the AEM prevent people who crave power from gaining and abusing positions of power?
First, by being an Egalitarian society, we make it impossible for people in power to convert their political power into personal economic gain because everybody receives the same rate of pay, and we don't normally pay politicians overtime (We would prefer to have more people doing the job than to have less people working longer hours). Further, as with everybody else in the nation, politicians and the Head of State have no control over the money that is deposited into their personal bank accounts. This job is the responsibility of the federal treasury and it cannot be tampered with by politicians or Heads of State. Also, government politicians (and people who manage businesses) don't have any contact with money at all, so they cannot surreptitiously spend any of the state's money on personal expenses. And because there is no free cash floating around out there in society, it can't be used to corrupt people in positions of power. See our 'The Prevention of Corruption, Overcharging, Black-Markets, Stealing Money, Blackmail, Confidence Artists, Protection Rackets, Organised Crime, Rip-Offs, Illegal Immigration, and Black Money' web page, for more information about the AEM's cashless society. And because our leaders (and everyone else) can't receive any more pay than the rest of us or enjoy extra social privileges, it means that they truly do represent us because they and their families have no choice but to live as we do, and to put up with the same consequences of the laws and policies they create. If our political leaders are for some reason, putting us through some hardship, they are also living through this hardship.

Second, in the AEM's Egalitarian society, nobody, including politicians, own businesses, and therefore there can be no conflict of interests between what is good for politicians and what is good for the citizens.

These circumstances, which prevent people from abusing their power for self-interested reasons may serve to deter certain inappropriate people from wanting positions of power, but they are not enough. Even without the incentive of acquiring more than others, there are still people who want power because of what it means about them. They are ambitious, crave high social status, the adoration of the society, being important, being famous, holding a place in history, and/or being seen as a great leader or a winner. These desires (along with wanting more wealth) are part of what we have referred to as the "desire to be empowered in relation to other people". You might think that these things (e.g. fame, public adoration, high status) are not such undesirable desires to have as most of us fantasize about being such people all the time, although in our capitalist society, we are encouraged to desire such things. However, some people will do almost anything to achieve them, and such people can be just as ruthless as those who seek wealth when it comes to acquiring positions of power. And even we who are not so ruthless are just as likely to abuse our power to remain in office, which is why most of us are probably unsuitable to hold positions of power. We say that in an Egalitarian society especially, but in all other societies also, the best people for the citizens to trust in positions of power are people who don't desire to be empowered in relation to other people, and this is particularly so for the person who holds the most powerful position in the land (which, in the case of the AEM's Egalitarian society, is the Head of State). While people who desire to be empowered in relation to others can be extremely beneficial for the society, it is because they desire to be empowered in relation to others that they are completely unsuitable for, if not incapable of representing the people that they desire to be empowered in relation to. Therefore, we need to take measures to ensure that such people are also excluded from positions of power. However, people who don't desire to be empowered in relation to others do not usually seek positions of power unless they cannot see any other way of solving various problems within the society (which is why the AEM seeks power), or unless they are asked or persuaded to. Therefore, under normal circumstances, just by wanting or applying for a position of power indicates that one is the wrong person for the job. However, our contemporary democratic process involves voting for people who are applying for positions of power, which is one of the reasons why the AEM is opposed to the contemporary democratic process.

People who desire to be the centre of (public) attention can also be referred to as people who desire to be empowered in relation to others. And this means that while we all enjoy the entertainment provided by many of the people who want to be the centre of attention, they are also the wrong people to hold positions of power because their desire to be empowered in relation to other people is more likely to motivate these people to abuse their positions of power so that they can continue to be the centre of attention. Further, it is the desire to be the centre of attention that makes these people unsuitable for the job of representing those people who are to pay attention. Such people feel at home in a public speaking role, and because of such, they often become motivated to develop their communication skills and facial expressions (as an actor might), and they usually love the microphone and the camera. Conversely, people who don't desire to be empowered in relation to others don't desire, or don't normally choose to be the centre of attention. As such, they don't enjoy public speaking, and they usually choose to avoid the microphone and camera. However, once again, our contemporary democratic process favours people who love to be the centre of attention, which is another reason why the AEM is opposed to the contemporary democratic process. The AEM further believes that measures must be taken to prevent people in positions of power from being the centre of attention, by not allowing them to speak in public or to appear in the media. Instead, people who do desire to be the centre of attention speak on behalf of those people in positions of power, whenever necessary.

Being in the spot light is not just a way of being the centre of attention, it is also is a form of self-promotion. In many economically and socially stratified societies, but particularly within our capitalist society, self-promotion is literally part of the culture because promotion and self-promotion are associated with selling one's self, one's ideas, or one's goods or services. And this has occurred because self-promotion is another one of those practices (discussed in our 'Why We Know that All Elitist Societies are Invalid' web page) that filters down throughout the society from the top, because in our democratic society, promotion and self-promotion are regarded as legitimate ways of winning government. Just as the promotional packaging of a product is a well known and extremely successful strategy for seducing the consumer into believing that it is a better product than the product in plain packaging, so too are wearing expensive clothing, immaculate presentation, and speaking with confidence and authority well known and extremely successful strategies for seducing the consumer or the voter into believing that that person is more professional, more educated, and more trustworthy than those people who do not partake in these forms of self-promotion. But just as elaborate packaging doesn't necessarily mean that the product is any better than the plainly packaged product, neither does immaculate presentation or speaking with confidence and authority necessarily mean that a politician is a better social leader than a politician who is not well-presented and who speaks poorly. Promotion and self-promotion seduce customers and voters to be taken in by the display or their subjective evaluations, and not by their function or their objective evaluations, and politicians do this because they know that the public is highly susceptible to this form of emotional manipulation. And as political battles (and the culture derived from the way political battles are fought) have been done this way for all of our lives, we regard self-promotion as normal behaviour for people seeking office, and we regard politicians that don't do it very well as being lacking in the ability to lead the nation or community. Theoretically however, if the policies are good, then self-promotion is unnecessary. However, promotion and self-promotion entail quite a bit more than just presentation and display. For example, the greater number of times a product is advertised, the more people become familiar with, and trusting of that product, which means they are more likely to consume that product. The same is true for politicians. This is why certain leaders place pictures and statues of themselves all around their country. But this method of conditioning is insignificant compared to what can be achieved through television, and this is why our current, self-promoting Prime Minister, John Howard is seen and heard on our television sets almost every night when he doesn't need to be, and why he uses these opportunities to re-affirm the sensibility and social value of what the government is doing or has done, while the opposition receives far less air-time to challenge these arguments. At the same time, the media seeks ratings and having the Prime Minister on their programs increases ratings, and so they encourage the Prime Minister to be there as often as he likes. Self-promotion is also why we see (in the media) our Prime Minister at important or popular social events or when Australians have won some highly publicized event (e.g. war, sports events, big exporting contracts) as though he and his government are partly responsible for this win, and as though he and his government are made of the same stuff. So, promotion and self-promotion serve to further advantage people or businesses that have access to, or who can afford access to greater representation within the media (which is why it is exploited), and this serves to disadvantage the majority of people, politicians, and businesses who also have something to say or sell, but don't have access to the media. But even if self-promotion within the media doesn't serve to advantage certain people, self-promotion is still a way of attempting to empower one's self in relation to others (through methods that are not objective). Conversely, people who do not desire to be empowered in relation to other people do not partake in self-promotion. People who are prepared to partake in self-promotion to acquire positions of power clearly indicate that they desire power, and therefore indicate that they are also the wrong people to place in positions of power. Further, the types of people who desire to partake in self-promotion are not the right people to represent the majority of people who do not partake in self-promotion. As such, the AEM sees that people who partake in self-promotion, whether this be in their working or private lives are the wrong people to hold power, but once again, in our contemporary democratic process, one is unlikely to succeed in politics if one doesn't partake in self-promotion, and so it is impossible to discern which people are doing because they have to and which people are doing it because they crave power. In the AEM's Egalitarian society, people who partake in self-promotion during their working or private lives are not selected for positions in government or as Heads of State. 

Many different types of television personalities use their success within the media (or even just their appearances in a short-running second-rate program) to gain publishing contracts, recording contracts, advertising contracts, and higher pays for later television appearances. This isn't because publishers, record companies, advertisers, and television companies realise that these media personalities are extremely multi-talent people, but because they know from experience that popular personalities are more likely to sell products better than unknown people are. This popularity with the viewers is not necessarily derived from being a better actor or more intelligent than other media personalities, but more from such things as being attractive, funny, witty, charismatic, or possessing strong facial features and a great speaking voice, and often, many of these qualities are often constructed by the type of personalities these people play in their television roles (e.g. a doctor, a defender of the weak, a good mother, a nice person, the good guy, a narrator of documentaries). And many of these more subjective personal qualities and skills also serve to gain public popularity for politicians, and like actors or television presenters, the speeches that politicians present in the media and other public forums are usually written by other people (i.e. speech writers), and many of the arguments they put forward, and the way the present themselves are coached by legal, political, media, and publicity experts. That is, to a large extent, a politician is just a trained (or self-trained) mouthpiece, salesperson, or showman, who has deliberately nurtured those skills that are successful in winning over the public (or the mob). However, unlike actors and television presenters, political showmen use their success within the media as a means of gaining more control of their political party, and if they already have control of the party (or the government), then they use their success within the media to maintain and secure control of the party (or the government). If we considered that a politician is like a lawyer who represents the members of the political party, this practice is akin to a lawyer using their success in representing his/her client to gain more control over what the client owns, whether that client be an individual or a company. As you know, under normal circumstances, this would not occur, and it doesn't necessarily need to occur in political parties either. The fact that it does indicates that these politicians truly do crave power, which means (according to the AEM) that they are the wrong people to place in positions of power. Recently, we saw Kim Beasley bidding for the leadership of the Labour Party because he thought he could out-argue John Howard, the leader of the Liberal Party, and because he thought he could relate to the people better than Simon Crean could, the current leader of Labour Party. Not surprisingly, Simon Crean disagreed, and refused to go without a fight (which he was pretty sure he could win). However, there really isn't anything stopping the Labour Party from using Kim Beasley's supposedly superior debating and public speaking skills to out-argue John Howard, or his ability to relate to the people, or his charisma to win the election campaign, even though Simon Crean remains the leader of the Labour Party, except for one thing. The members of a political party are just like those publishing, recording, advertising, and media companies, and if they see that Kim Beasley is winning over the public better than Simon Crean can, whether that is because he is a better debater or because he has more charisma, they are more likely to want Kim Beasley to be the leader of the Labour Party, even if he has radically different ideas for policies, if that's what it takes to win government. This is why the Liberal Party wants to keep John Howard as the leader, even though theoretically, it shouldn't make any difference if John Howard is only there to present Liberal Party policies. And this phenomenon motivates the leader of any political party to largely fight the political campaign by themselves, and to limit the media appearances of other politicians within the party, including other ministers to specific issues, in an attempt to reduce their exposure in the media. So, getting to the top of a political party has much less to do with being clever and creating good policies, and much more to do with one's success within the media. In the AEM's Egalitarian society, no politician or lobby group gain direct access to the media (i.e. everybody goes through speakers who do not hold any power), and therefore getting to the top in politics will rely entirely upon one's superior ideas and policies, rather than it currently does upon one's popularity, based on personality, charisma, or statesmanship, etc.

For all these reasons, the AEM sees that the contemporary democratic process delivers to us the wrong people for the job every time. For such people, the promise of improving the society is only a means to an end. That is, they first desire to be in power and then they look for reasons for why the citizens would elect them to power. And once they gain power, they look for reasons for why the citizens would vote to keep them in power. The AEM says that these are the wrong reasons to seek positions of power. Ideally, people in positions of power should have no interest in power, and only do the job because....

  • they see no other way to improve the society,
  • they have been asked to, 
  • they are good at it, 
  • they can be trusted to work on behalf of the people and the culture, and not on behalf of themselves.

However, these reasons are very easy claims to make about one's self or one's political party. And politicians are fully aware that the public is highly suspicious of people who crave power, and so they know that they need to behave as though they are responsible people who are doing the job for the nation, and not because they crave power. These claims however, will be far more convincing when the people in control of power don't receive more than others for their labour, and don't receive any public recognition, as is the case for most people in other occupations. It is just another job.

Before we discuss what the AEM intends to do, there are still other problems associated with the contemporary democratic system, which are also unacceptable, and which also serve to place the wrong people in positions of power.

The Competition
If you re-examine the list of social problems (at the top of this page) created by the contemporary version of democracy, you will see that many of these problems are created by two separate processes that work in conjunction with each other. First, political parties attempt to gain power by competing against each other every few years to win government, and second, winning government requires winning the majority of the citizens' votes in an election.

In the quest to gain control of the society, non-government political parties would compete to win government even if the society was running smoothly and experiencing no social problems. This is because political parties, particularly the major parties, are in the business of winning government (which is not the same as being in the business of improving the society). That is, politicians are obliged to try to win government on behalf of the members of their political party, just as lawyers are obliged to try to win court cases on behalf of their clients. Winning is the name of the game, and this is why no government ever admits (to the voters) that it is doing a lousy job of improving the society, and why no opposition party would ever admit that the government is doing a good job. They are obliged to try to win government regardless, and they are obliged to ridicule their opposition regardless. So, it doesn't matter whether individual politicians desire power or not, the institution of their political party only exists to gain more power within the society. That is, uniting together under the one political banner is always undertaken to politically empower the members' viewpoints or philosophies within parliament and the greater society. And the more members a political party has, and particularly the more members a political party has in parliament, the more political power it gains. These viewpoints usually serve to favour the self-interests of the members of the political party, and not the interests of everybody within the society. As such, political parties nurture an endlessly stressful and disharmonic "us against them" culture, which is rather appropriate in our capitalist society because as we have discussed in our 'Some Other Egalitarianist Perspectives on the Problems Associated with Capitalism' web page, capitalism creates a situation where everybody is in an economic war against everybody else. And in these economic wars, peoples' economic self-interests are strengthened when they can unite together with other like-minded people because this allows them to politically dominate other people, and this political superiority is used to create economic (and social) advantages for these people. So, domination for self-interested reasons is the nature of our capitalist society and it is also the nature of our party-orientated democratic system, which is another reason why the AEM disapproves of the contemporary democratic process. In the AEM's Egalitarian society, because nobody can be economically advantaged or disadvantaged in relation to other people, there is no need to unite together for this reason. In fact, we don't support the concept of political parties at all, but we will discuss what we propose to install, later.

Before we proceed, it should be mentioned that a discussion about why people vote the way they do is somewhat awkward because some people vote more for the political party that takes their fancy, while others vote for the candidate in their electorate that takes their fancy, while others vote for the leader that takes their fancy, while others vote on particular issues. Therefore, this discussion is somewhat generalised.

The competition between political parties and politicians is not like other competitions, where there is some objective criteria to achieve, such as swimming 100 meters quicker than the others, beating the other in a game of tennis, or gaining the highest marks in an exam. Political competition is currently a very subjective affair, which relies upon making the right impression and seducing the majority of voters. Unlike these other competitions, the winner is chosen by the voters before all but one of the candidates or political parties have had the opportunity to display how good he/she/it is at managing the society. Imagine that instead of running in foot races, the winner was chosen by how well they could convince the spectators that he/she is the fastest person there by sounding confident about his/her claims that he/she is the fastest and by how well he/she prances around. In order for the true fastest person to win, he/she would also have to be a convincing speaker or salesperson, look and act like a fast and tenacious runner, and be able to prance well, and even then, not every spectator would be convinced. What is more likely is that the fastest runner wouldn't win this contest. In fact, the fastest runner would probably not even be amongst the competitors if this is how winning races has always been determined. What you have left is a bunch of good looking, chest-puffing showmen, and the winner will be the one that most people believe looks, talks, and behaves like a winner. So, we could say that this competition is designed to hinder the fastest runner from winning, and is designed instead to favour a completely different type of person (i.e. people who appeal to our stereotypical ideas of what a champion runner should look and behave like). If we did this in tennis, Andre Agassi and Lleyton Hewitt would never have become number one tennis players in the world, perhaps not even the thousandth. This example may seem far-fetched, but this is exactly the same problem that we face when we chose who to vote for. Essentially, voters have no way of knowing which politician or political party is the best by hearing what they say and by seeing how well they present themselves, and the voters don't even know after that politician or political party wins the election because there is nothing solid to measure him/her/it against. Even when the country is going down hill, the politician or political party can claim that forces beyond his/her/its control are to blame and we, the voters can only make a guess as to whether or not he/she/it is telling the truth. Also, a democratically elected government can fail to achieve any of its proposed goals, and still be re-elected because we, the voters didn't like the show the opposing political parties displayed. A politician's job is to deal with people and manage portfolios or the country, and this is a similar role to that of a manager in a business. However, privately owned businesses hire managers on their qualifications, track record, and experience, and promote managers who manage well, rather than do the ridiculous thing of asking the workers to vote for who they want as the manager of their department or their company. Why should it be any different for the people who manage the society? Answer - by asking the public who they want to lead them, people who aren't good leaders can bypass the same types of objective evaluations that are used by employers. And they can cheat these more objective evaluations even more when political parties gain votes by appealing to the self-interests of the majority, which is much easier to do in a capitalist society where everybody has to look out for themselves (economically and vocationally). That is, our democratic process was designed by, and designed to favour people who were skilled at displaying the show we want to see and people who are skilled at working a mob, rather than people who are skilled at managing our society. As with our example of the runners having to convince the spectators that they are the fastest, the contemporary democratic process is a method of out competing the best people for the job by changing the rules of competition to favour the type of people who have gained control of the society (via other methods).

An election campaign has a lot of similarities to a courtroom battle. Lawyers direct their cases to a jury, whereas political parties direct their cases to the public (or the mob). However, in the courtroom, opposition lawyers are able to object to the inappropriate, incorrect, or misleading things the other side might say or infer. If these objections are seen as reasonable, the judge directs the jury to ignore these statements, inferences, or testimonies so that the jury will only base their decision about guilt or innocence on what is not successfully objected to, so that the decision brought down is as reasonable and as just as can be. However, during a political campaign, while a political party may complain about inappropriate, incorrect, or misleading things the other side may say, there is usually no unbiased overseer to direct the voter to ignore inappropriate statements or claims, and there is no independent observer to provide confirmation about the truth of what each side is claiming. But even if there were, what the voter chooses to accept or reject is completely unenforceable within a secret ballot. Also, as we have mentioned, unlike jurors, voters are not impartial. As such, determining what is right or wrong, or what is responsible or irresponsible, or what is good for the society and what is not good for the society are all replaced by determining 'what's good for me' and 'what's not good for me'.

Pandering to the majority changes what political parties do. That is, they are less likely to do what they think is the most sensible thing to do if the public is not interested in doing what is sensible, and this is extremely likely when each person is concerned about their own economic and vocational needs. Suppose we have two contenders for the position of Leader of the Government. One leader declares that his/her government will increase taxes to improve social services such education and health care, while the other leader declares that his/her government will not increase taxes and will not increase spending on any social services. It is likely that a (tax paying) majority, many of which do not require the use of such social services, will vote not to increase tax. Suppose that one leader declares that he/she will reduce fishing because our fish stocks are being depleted (which will also serve to increase the price of fish, and reduce the number of fishermen), while the other leader declares that he/she would never consider cutting back our supply of fish. Which leader is the (fish eating) majority likely to vote for? As we saw in our 'The Capitalist Scam' web page, privately owned businesses pandering to the consumer often cause environmental, ecological, and social problems, and the same is true for governments or political parties pandering to the voter. The truth of the matter is that the citizens are often the wrong people to ask about what we should do, but by allowing the voter to decide what they want, we get people in power who are prepared to be irresponsible just so that they can gain power. That is, once again, the democratic process is a way of cheating the best people out of the job of leadership because the democratic process lets the self-interested public decide what they want. Consequently, we end up with politicians who are better at playing to the self-interested fears and desires (that are created by living with a capitalist context) of the voter, rather than responsible leadership. Incidentally, in the AEM's Egalitarian society, people don't pay income tax, and therefore such self-interested concerns about what level of tax individuals pay becomes a redundant issue. Also, should prices rise because we are attempting to reduce consumption of various goods, the Leader of the Government and the Head of State are just as inconvenienced as everybody else, which makes going without much more tolerable because nobody is being advantaged by doing so.

Because we hold elections every few years, it allows people and political institutions that seek power to keep their power-craving hopes alive, and to keep trying to acquire power every few years. And because powerful people back political parties that support the powerful, power-seeking political parties have bigger campaign budgets and they can sustain their quest indefinitely, unlike those political parties that support the poor or the middle classes.  

Problems with the Contemporary Version of Democracy Don't End at the Polls
When governments want to pass new laws, they need to win the majority of the votes within parliament, and then within the senate. Similarly, we saw that the USA was trying to win the majority of votes in the United Nations assembly to gain approval to invade Iraq. To gain this majority of votes, the USA pressured many smaller nations by threatening to withdraw aid, and seduced others with the promise of aid. In doing so, the USA was trying to pressure these nations into not doing what their conscience dictated or what they thought was reasonable in favour of supporting the USA's invasion of Iraq. So, regardless of whether the USA was right or wrong, the democratic process within the UN was being corrupted by threats and favours. And the same thing goes on within Australia's parliament and senate when governments are trying to pass new laws, particularly when the government doesn't hold a clear majority. That is, governments often try to influence the voting of independent members within parliament and the senate, and even the voting of members within the government and the opposition with favours or threats. In fact, some independents could be accused of deliberately refusing to vote for the new laws until the government offers them some kind of carrot. This is also what goes on within a political party when candidates are vying for the position of leader of the party, or when the leaders or other politicians are attempting to gain party support for a particular policy. This process could be described as, 'I'll give you what you want if you give me what I want'. However, this practice is not regarded by our contemporary politicians and by democratically elected governments around the world as corruption, collusion, or coercion, and instead goes under the very respectable title of 'politicking', and as such, it is often done in the full view of everybody as though it is a valid way of winning these internal types of elections (which is not surprising as an election campaign is a very similar process by which political parties offer the citizens some type of carrot in order to get their votes). To say this another way, this aspect of the contemporary democratic process has been deliberately created by deviously ruthless people so that the law and policy-making processes can be corrupted by people who hold positions of power, but who don't hold enough power to create these laws and policies without gaining the support of other people in positions of power. But most importantly, to get to the top of a political party, one needs to be very adept at this form of corruption, further indicating that such people are completely unsuitable for leadership and positions of power. Money is also good for bribery and as such, those with money can out-bribe those will less money within this democratic process, which therefore favours the rich and those in power (once again).

Some Important Misconceptions about Democratically Elected Governments
People appear to believe that the contemporary democratic system motivates governments to improve social services such as education, healthcare, and roads, lest they be removed from office at the next election. However, we have just seen the contemporary Howard government reduced spending on education and healthcare, and yet they were re-elected, so this belief is not really true. But even if it were true, it would only be true in relation to dictatorships. In the AEM's Egalitarian society, social services will improve considerably because everybody, including the Leader of the Government and the Head of State, and their children have no choice but to use the same social services as everybody else (e.g. eventually, there will be no private educational facilities or private healthcare services, etc).

Another major (conditioned) misconception that most people appear to have about our current form of democracy is that the ability of voters to oust incompetent or ruthless governments in favour of more reliable, responsible, or humanitarian governments has served to benefit the citizens by raising our standard of living. However, the improvements in our standard of living were mainly brought about by higher wages, and higher wages were fought for by workers' unions in great opposition to the employers and democratically elected governments. Quit simply, in all cases of successful union action, both the employers and governments become sick of, and worried about losing money, due to workers' strikes, which forced the employers and governments to (partially) surrender to the demands of the unions, and this is nothing like a democratic process. It's a war of attrition, where both sides try to hold out as long as they can without receiving any income. And it is only the threat of further union or strike action that serves to maintain the standard of living we have reached. Higher wages also served to increase consumption, which served to increase production of goods and services, thereby improving the (capitalist) economy in general. Also, the public is often inconvenienced by strike action, and therefore they are also often unsympathetic towards strikers, particularly when the majority of the public are not the ones who are going to receive a pay rise, while some minority group is. Therefore, democratically elected governments are usually right to think that they will not lose too many votes by not supporting these workers, which means that the majority of the voting public were/are also often hindering the improvements in our standard of living. Also, for the past two hundred years, your ancestors have been making roads, building houses and high-rises, laying pipes and wires, manufacturing products, mining ore, etc, and it would be a strange thing indeed if there were no physical evidence to show for it today, without there having been some war or natural disaster, lest there be a revolution. Democracy didn't bring you these things, hard physical and intellectual labour did, but in our democratic-capitalist society, those who support democracy, which are those who have the loudest (or the only) public voice have forever been taking credit for it, just as the leaders of all elitist societies do and always will, because they know we keep believing them.

Getting back to the idea that democracy allows the citizens to oust incompetent or ruthless leaders from power; we don't need democracy to achieve this if we have other safeguards in place. However, in the AEM's Egalitarian society, it is rather difficult for people in power to be ruthless, and so that means that we would mainly need to worry about being able to remove incompetent leaders from power. This is one of the functions of the Head of State, who monitors the government's performance, and whose job it is to remove Leaders of Government and Heads of Portfolios who don't perform well, on behalf of the people. If you read our 'What the AEM is Tentatively Asking the Australian People to Agree to' web page, you will see that we also allow citizens to express their approval or disapproval of the Egalitarian constitution (and its government), and to change the constitution, via a constitutional elections that are held between 5 and 25 years, depending upon how great the approval was at the last time the citizens were asked. Therefore, the Head of State and the government always need to be concerned about being perceived by the public as being ruthless or incompetent, lest they lose guardianship of the society. Also, as mentioned, after the first 10 years of Egalitarianism, you will be provided with the opportunity to vote for the return of democratically elected governments if you feel that the AEM's democratic system is unsatisfactory.

What the AEM is Tentatively Proposing
Before we begin, you should be aware that this brief description (below) of how the AEM intends to manage our society and culture is not set in concrete at this stage. Since it appears obvious that changes are needed in how we manage our society, and who we allow to hold positions of power, we intend to open this discussion up to receive input from anybody that has put thought into these issues. In fact, we may even try out several different models during the first 15 years. So, unlike the contemporary upholders of our constitution and political system, who insist that nothing be changed (mainly because they are successful within this system), we are not afraid to experiment. Whatever model is eventually chosen, its objectives are to provide rational and just management of the society, and to overcome those problems discussed above.

In the AEM's Egalitarian society, there are two bodies that control the society: the government and the Department of the Head of State. The people in both of these bodies cannot apply for, or be elected to the job. Instead, we favour a similar process to that which is currently being used to select judges to serve in the high court, except that members are selected by selection committees (instead of governments), who employ very stringent selection criteria. However, the selection criteria for members of the government are somewhat different to those for the Department of the Head of State. Regardless, Heads of State, Leaders of Government, and Heads of Portfolios will be immediately removed from office if they begin to contradict the criteria by which they have been selected for the job. This is also another safeguard for preventing Heads of State and Leaders of Government from becoming ruthless or unreasonable. The selection criteria for positions within the government and especially, the Department of the Head of State are regarded as highly confidential because when people know what these criteria are, people who crave power modify their behaviour to suit these criteria in order to gain power, and this defeats the purpose of having the selection criteria. However, as you have already read about the types of people we are trying to prevent from holding positions of power, it is not difficult to guess what personal attributes these selection criteria are selecting for, and what personal attributes they are attempting to filter out.

As mentioned earlier, no members of the government and no executive members of the Department of Head of State are allowed to be seen or heard in the media, and therefore all communications from a portfolio, the government, and the Department of the Head of State to the public are handled by public speakers who in turn, can never be allowed to hold positions of power (either currently or in the future), and they are never involved in the law and policy-making processes. This process works both ways as citizens may also choose to be provided with a speaker when they wish to communicate to, or challenge the laws and policies of the government or a portfolio therein, and the Department of the Head of State.

All activities, including all meetings and communications with other members of the government and the Department of Head of State, government departments, the armed forces, and all other citizens, will be recorded. All such recordings or transcripts that are eventually associated with action, policies, or laws of the state will be available for public scrutiny (except for those associated with national security, which also includes discussions associated with the selection of people to key positions. Also, the identities of private citizens will be protected). That is, except in those areas mentioned, we run an extremely open and accountable form of rule in which there are no private meetings.

The Head of State and the Department of the Head of State
In the AEM's Egalitarian society, the Head of State is the most powerful position in the nation. The Department of the Head of State services the Head of State and includes representatives of the Head of State, who observe all activities of the government on behalf of the Head of State, and who report back to the Head of State about what they have observed. Representatives of the Head of State are often potential Heads of State, and they may often act as Head of State as part of their training. The Head of State and the Department of the Head of State perform four extremely important functions.

  • First, the Head of State and the Department of the Head of State act as watchdogs over the activities of the Government to ensure that an Egalitarian ethic and the Egalitarian constitution are being maintained and that social problems and other issues are being dealt with from a sociological perspective whenever possible. Generally, it is unacceptable for a government to put forward a law or policy that does not meet these criteria, and to do so would normally see the Leader of the Government and the Head of the Portfolio in question being removed from office, never to return (subject to appeals). Unlike the contemporary democratic scam, we remove unsuitable people from office at the time that they have demonstrated that they are unsuitable, rather than to wait for an election and to let the people decide whether or not to re-elect them.
  • Second, the Head of State and the Department of the Head of State determine the major aims and objectives of the nation. These aims and objectives set the direction that the nation and the culture are heading, and they determine the parameters within which the government must manage to nation. As such, the Head of State and the Department of the Head of State create the initial laws and policies of the nation, which the government can change and modify later with the approval of the Head of State or the public.
  • Third, the Head of State is ultimately responsible for all social and economic problems and all aspects of the society, which is why the Head of State and the Department of the Head of State can reject certain new laws or policies, or insist that certain laws and policies be changed. As such, no laws and policies that are proffered by the government are considered legal until they have been approved by the Head of State (or an acting Head of State). Because the Head of State is ultimately responsible for all aspects of the society, the Head of State can also replace Leaders of Government and Heads of Portfolios if they do not perform well or are becoming corrupt.
  • Forth, to be the last option available for resolving problems and grievances of private citizens. Generally, private citizens first present their problem or grievance to the appropriate department within the government. If they are not satisfied with this outcome, they can then, if appropriate, go through the courts system. If they are not satisfied with this outcome, they can finally appeal to the Department of the Head of State. However, if they are still not satisfied, they can go to the media in order to gain public support.

Heads of State will be removed from office if they are found guilty of not upholding the Egalitarian constitution. This removal from office can be instigated by special departments within the police force and the defense force, both of which monitor the activities of the Heads of State and the Department of the Head of State. As mentioned, Heads of State can also be removed from office if they begin to contradict the criteria by which they were selected. This third method for removing unsuitable Heads of State from office is instigated by the selection committee that selects potential Heads of State, but which also monitors the conduct of the existing Head of State and the representatives of the Head of State. Incidentally, we view the current policy whereby governments select Heads of State as being extremely inappropriate and suspicious, especially when governments are politically biased in favour of their own political agendas.

The Government
Similar to the contemporary system, the government consists of Heads of Portfolios and the Leader of the Government, but these people do not actually create, or put forward laws and policies. Instead, their job is to oversee and coach those people within their portfolios who do create laws and policies, who we will refer to (for now) as Deputy Heads of Portfolios. Each Portfolio has a number of deputies depending upon how many issues need to be dealt with at any one time. As with a royal commission, deputies are assigned to one particular issue at a time, which they must research, seek advice, hear from all those people and lobby groups who have an interest in that issue, and eventually they put forward....

  • one or a number of proposals regarding policies and laws associated with that issue, and
  • rationalisations for why they have chosen these laws and policies, and
  • rationalisations for why other ideas were not chosen.

So, there are no political parties as such. There are people or lobby groups that represent viewpoints associated with each issue to be considered, just as a lawyer represents a client in court. The government and the portfolios therein act like impartial judges who weigh up the arguments from all lobby groups and individuals, in relation to the national aims and objectives outlined by the Head of State, and as such, Heads and Deputy Heads of Portfolios and Governments are required to be well educated and highly qualified.

Except for issues of national security, the entire process is conducted within a public forum, and always in the presence of a representative of the Head of State. These proceedings are also always observed by government speakers who represent the government and portfolios so that they may be able to fully explain, and answer questions from the public about the decisions that are made by the government. The resulting rationalisations and the laws and policies they support can be challenged by anyone at any time thereafter, and to assist in this regard, the whole process, including challenges, are available for anyone to read so that they may add to this argument. And every argument must be answered by the government. It is a far more thorough and scientific process than that which is being currently undertaken, and with the exception of those issues associated with national security, it is also far more observable, educational, and accessible to the public than is the current system.

The proposals for laws and policies that are put forward by Deputy Heads of Portfolios and Deputy Leaders of Government can be quite varied. For example, often, a proposal may be to allow the citizens to decide for themselves on a local, region, or national bases, via an election, between various alternative ideas. This is how the AEM's democratic system works. That is, you don't vote for the people who proffer the best ideas: you vote for the ideas that you think are the best. Prior to these elections, the public is provided with the details of each person's or lobby group's argument as well as the criticisms of these arguments. To prevent people from using these elections to promote themselves, these presentations are delivered by impartial speakers (i.e. not the person or lobby group that is putting forward the argument), and they will usually be presented in a documentary format. Such elections, which could entail voting on a range of different issues at the one time, may be held as often as once a year, or sooner if necessary. Other times, asking the people what they they think is best may be deemed as inappropriate. Other times, it may be decided to trial several competing ideas at once in different towns or states to see what works best, or alternatively to trial one idea in one town, workplace, school, or region to see how successful it is, or how the people involved are coping with it, and how they feel about it.

The Leader of Government is responsible for the laws and policies that are presented to the Head of State for approval, and as such, the Leader of Government can reject such proposals on the grounds that they would be rejected by the Head of State.

The Department of the Head of State in association with a selection committee for members of the government selects Leaders of Government, Heads of Portfolios, and Deputy Heads of Portfolios. However, the Leader of the Government does have a strong say about which people will be Heads of which Portfolio, as long has he/she receives the approval of the Head of State and the selection committee.

Not having democratically elected governments concerns many people because they fear that certain people will hold a monopoly on power, but this will not be so in the AEM's Egalitarian society. Government is like a training ground, in which new people are constantly being brought in to train for the positions within. The affect is that we develop an oversupply of people who are capable of doing the job, and many people in government will not be full-time government personnel and will hold other jobs. As such, it is unlikely that a Leader of Government will hold this position for more than 5 years, and we are also looking at the idea of having a small panel of people, rather than one person as the Leader of Government.

The Public
Members of the public (of any age) can also be a part of the law and policy-making process within the AEM's Egalitarian society, in several ways.

  • In the process of making laws and policies, the state is required to provide representation for any viewpoint that any individual or lobby group has regarding a particular issue (unless these viewpoints contradict an Egalitarian ethic, or unless these viewpoints contradict a sociological solution when a sociological solution is possible, or unless these viewpoints are based upon religious beliefs). Anybody can challenge the state thereafter, on any issue, and these people can also choose to be provided with speakers/lawyers to argue on behalf of them, and all challenges must be responded to by the government. The transcripts of the entire process, including challenges, and the ensuing debate, will be available for public viewing (including via the Internet), which also allows other people to add to the argument, at any time thereafter. These transcripts act like public notice boards whereby people or lobby groups can solicit public support for their causes. Strong public support is highly influential upon the laws and policies that Egalitarian governments make. In fact, in not basing laws and policies upon anybody's religious beliefs, such crimes as murder, robbery, child abuse, and public nudity are created by the overwhelming majority of citizens (i.e. over 90%) believing that these behaviours should be illegal (for unauthorised people to perform). As such, strong public support can lead to change, or to the state allowing the citizens to vote on the issue. However, you could also change laws and policies without public support just by putting forward a winning argument. Unlike the contemporary democratic system where it is dangerous for one's political career to do a back-flip on a particular issue, or to admit to being wrong: not being elected to office, the politicians within the AEM's Egalitarian government don't have these problems to consider, and as such they are more open to suggestions, criticisms, and advice.
  • If the above processes don't deliver satisfaction, in that citizens feel that their rights are being violated, citizens will also be able to challenge the state through the free legal system.
  • The state will also provide academic and media support for producing small documentaries (for public viewing on television) for people who have a range of things to discuss, including new or forgotten theories, philosophical perspectives, economic issues or strategies, pleas for (more) research in particular areas, or cultural issues. However, this service is mainly provided for things or ideas that aren't being, or have not been discussed by society, the media, the government, or academia, and it is not available for people who wish to advertise, solicit public support, or to reaffirm issues or ideas that most people already know about. Once again, all such documentaries must be responded to by the government, and once again, strong public support may convince the government to support these causes or ideas. However, sometimes strong public support is not required for the government to support these peoples' ideas, if the government or the Head of State sees the sense in what these people are saying. Once again however, strong public support can lead to change, or to the state allowing the citizens to vote on the issue.
  • Members of the public can also take their grievances against the laws, policies, or actions of the government to the media. Even though in the AEM's Egalitarian society, the state also owns all media companies: like the legal system, news and current affairs programs and publications are independently autonomous (as with the ABC's 'Four Corners' program), and they are allowed to challenge the government on most issues, and once again, the government is expected to respond to these challenges. As such, this is another means of gaining public support.

Voting is also different and improved within the AEM's Egalitarian society. First, as mentioned, we vote on issues and not for people or parties. This usually means that we vote more often than we do now, particularly in the early years of Egalitarianism. These elections may cover a range of issues for you to vote upon. Some of these are issues that the government has deemed suitable to vote on after these issues have been thoroughly discussed by all those concerned. In these cases, there will often be several options to choose from for each issue. Other issues to be voted upon are those that anybody within the society has successfully developed a sizable amount of support for, and which therefore gain the right to be voted upon. All of the issues and the arguments supporting and negating the choices within them will be given equal media coverage prior to the election so that the public has a reasonable understanding of each of them.

Voting is also not compulsory. The AEM takes the view that if you don't vote, then you don't care which choice wins. And if a reasonable percentage of the voting public doesn't care, this is very significant for the government and the public to know about when choosing which laws or policies to enact. This is why you may also go to the election and choose the "I don't care" option on the ballot form. Other people may also be honest with themselves enough to know that they don't know enough about an issue to choose which is best. In fact, in some cases, this should be most of us, and this is also very important to know about, and why one will also be able to select this option when one votes on any issue. However, you might not like any of the choices, and have other ideas about what we should do. In this case, you will also be able to write your own choices on your ballot form. And that a percentage of voters have rejected all choices, and chosen another is also significant for the government and the public to know about. However, in our current democratic system, people are forced to choose one way or the other, when it is sometimes highly probable that over 50% of the people don't know, or don't care, or don't like the choices available to them. But because they are forced to choose, the outcome of the election does not reflect what the public truly thinks.

So, for certain issues voted upon in the AEM's Egalitarian society, a large percentage of the voting population may not actually vote for a particular option, and this tends to change the way in which we count votes and how the government determines which laws and policies to enact. For example, consider an issue that has only two options to vote upon. If 40% of the public did not select any option associated with the issue, 35% voted one way, and 25% voted the other way, then the government may be able to enact the option that it prefers, even if it is the option that only won 25% of the vote, because the government and the public know that 65% of the voting population has no objection to this option. As you can see, determining which laws and policies become enacted can have less to do with which option gained the most votes, and more to do with the how much disapproval is registered for each option. Often however, the government will not have a preferred option, and therefore the option that won 35% of the vote will be enacted because 75% of the voting public have no objection to it.

Also, because various issues are more important or more frightening than others, the levels of approval or disapproval can be varied to suit each issue. For example, if someone managed to have it put to the vote that we should be allowed to walk around in public naked, the government, or the Head of State, may deem (for reasons specified in advance) that if more than 20% of the voting population votes against going naked, then it won't happen. Another example: if we were voting locally on whether or not we should have daylight saving, the government or the Head of State may deem that if 40% or more of the local population votes against daylight saving, it won't occur. Alternatively, it may be deemed that at least 50% of the vote must support daylight saving for it to occur (i.e. which is not the same as 50% or more of the voting public having no objection to daylight saving).

Further, we may also adapt a system similar to that which the AEM is proposing for voting on which constitution the people prefer (See the section on constitutional elections in our 'What the AEM is Tentatively Asking the Australian People to Agree to' web page). That is, the degree to which approval or disapproval for a particular choice is registered determines when the public will be able to vote on this issue again in the future. For example, if 30% or more of the voting population voted in favour of something that did not win, the public may be able to vote on this issue again in say 5 years time, but if this option only received 15-20% of the vote, we may have to wait 10 years before this option is available for voting on in the future.

Also, in the contemporary democratic system, while many people in the media speculate about why people voted the way they did, we don't actually know for sure because we don't allow voters to specify why they voted the way they did. Knowing this information is extremely valuable for those who didn't win so that they can address these issues if or when the public votes on these issues again in the future. In the AEM's democracy, voters will be able to write or select their reasons for voting the way they did, if they choose to.

By allowing all viewpoints to be represented, we create a system whereby the citizens have a much stronger influence in the law and policy making processes. As such, we make it unnecessary for people with good ideas to gain positions of power in order to have those ideas enacted in laws and policies.

To conclude, the AEM intends to create a far more informative and accurate voting system that also adapts (in several way) to the issues being voted upon. We may also make voting easier by being able to vote from home via the Internet.

Let us know what you think about our new style of democracy, and why you think it.


Home | Our Mission | About the AEM | Major Policies | Current Issues | Join the AEM | Contact Us | Feedback | Resources

Legal Issue:  Copyright  |  Privacy  |  Disclaimer