Category: In Civic Life

Applying the principles and practices of  sociocratic democracy in civic life is where it may be most comfortable. Democracy is probably valued even when not practiced very well. Majority vote means majority rule, and it promotes competition rather than cooperation. It is in our neighborhood associations, community services, and local governments that we most need to use the sociocratic principles and practices that deepen our democracy.

Elections by Money

Elections by Money The only way to stop elections by money, the spiral of overwhelming political campaign expenses, seems to be stopping political campaigns. We elect people to do the work of governance, not to prove themselves experts at printing signs, inventing slogans and soundbites, and speaking at campaign financing dinners. Campaigns are a major distraction from quality leadership. They are undemocratic and produce undemocratic governments. Political campaigns are about the rich. What the rich want, what the… Read More . . . “Elections by Money”

Who Stole the American Dream

Crushing Middle-Class  Prosperity The American Dream is of obtaining middle-class prosperity and socio-economic mobility. Hedrick Smith analyzes how it was lost in America. The American middle class in the 1960s was the largest and most prosperous in the world. Now, the disparity between top and bottom is huge. Even the wealthiest 5% are falling behind the super-rich 1% that controls 2/3 of the nation’s wealth—trillions of dollars. The remaining 99% earn the remaining 1/3. America… Read More . . . “Who Stole the American Dream”

Preferential Voting and a Sociocratic Democracy

Instant Runoff Ballot Because our Council Member, Muriel Bowser, was elected mayor, Ward 4 in Washington DC is having an election to replace her. There are so many candidates, eight at last count?, that knowing who would be the best representative is very hard. My neighbors are speaking on behalf of almost all  of them. With so many votes splintered, unless some drop out in the remaining 3 days, there is likely to be a run-off election with… Read More . . . “Preferential Voting and a Sociocratic Democracy”

Transparency International

Movie poster for Living on One Dollar How can people participate in decision-making if they don’t have access to information? Can those denied both education and knowledge  of governance in any form be held responsible when they elect corrupt leaders? Transparency is fundamental to accountability and an inclusive society. Reading an article in the New York Times this morning on the lives of two women in Angola, Two Women, Opposite Fortunes, I discovered Transparency International. Transparency International was started in 1993 by… Read More . . . “Transparency International”

People’s Rights Amendment

Today, the Court has enthroned corporations, permitting them not only all kinds of special economic rights but now, amazingly, moving to grant them the same political rights as the people. Constitutional law expert, The movement to reserve the rights ensured by the US Constitution to citizens and stop them from being awarded to corporations is rapidly gaining steam. The legal standing of corporations as people began in 1886, in the famous case Santa Clara County… Read More . . . “People’s Rights Amendment”

Advocating Sociocracy

Lester Frank Ward in Yellowstone National Park with Fossil Tree Trunks, 1887 Public Advocacy By the late-nineteenth century it was clear that the democratic ideal on which the United States had been founded was not producing equal representation even for those allowed to vote. Nor was it providing a rational structure for social or economic leadership—at the local or national levels. Workplaces were autocratic, often brutally so. The government was dominated by politicians who often had their own interests at heart or were ignorant of democratic values.… Read More . . . “Advocating Sociocracy”