Recall of RA Members

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Bromo Ivory

Re: Recall of RA Members

Post by Bromo Ivory »

Victor1 wrote:So basically what you are saying Bromo is once we elect in a group of people, thats it, we are stuck with them. If we dont like it we can leave.

Well, THATS a nice representation of "Democracy". LMAO.
Actually Victor, that IS the point of a Representative democracy with regular elections. If you don't like it, wait till the next election.

But I was digging into this law a little more and taking notes, here is a cut and paste form some notes I have been writing up. I think the "RA recall" is actually undermining the STV system at it's root. I think there is a way to have your recall and NOT undermine minority rights in CDS, read on:

was looking over the RA recall information, as well as the
implications of the STV.

Here is a problem:

The STV system is specifically meant to find the right candidates in
the minority so the whole election is really one selection - the
configuration of candidates chosen is the whole point of it - and it
is specifically designed to make sure the *right* minority candidates
are chosen so as not to give the running over of the SIM to just the
majority and truly polarizing candidates.

So, the decision to remove a RA member, is really a rejection of the
WHOLE ELECTION, so when one is selected for recall, really the WHOLE
RA needs to be recalled and new elections should be held for the seat.

The main issue is this:

The minority candidates by definition, would not garner a majority of
votes in a general election. When there is a recall, several
candidates will run, essentially booting out the RA member because of
it. But that minority they would represent have just been
disenfranchiused, and a majority candidate was put in. More power to
the majority, less rights for the minority. Which the STV is supposed
to prevent.

Presumably, if I wanted to game the system, I could simply launch a
recall on a few RA members, pack the elections with friendlies to gain
the upper hand, and eventually work out the RA so they would do as I
wanted rather than what the community wanted.

And in RL, I was living in CA at the time of the most famous recall of
Grey Davis as governor. NOTHING got done in government, and it was
essentially used by the GOP to "game" the GOP into controlling the
state, since they put up a slate of candidates.

The main complaints that prompt this legislation are:

1. The RA members are absent. Simple solution: Set up a
requirements rule for attendance, if they fail to meet it, then they
are out and the whole RA is up for election if you believe in the STV
system for voting.

2. The RA members suffer mental disease: Not sure you can make an
accurate diagnosis over IM, I will assume this is "I don't like them"
and in a democracy you have to put up with a lot of people you don't
like.

3. Disruptive RA members get in the way of government: Thank
goodness they do, with so many bad laws flying around, slowness isn't
always a problem. And, part of being part of the minority is blocking
things. And part of the majority when faced with a minority is
figuring out what you can do, not trying to remove the minority from
any power.

And if you want to use this as a tool to single out people you simply don't get along with, if you beleive in the STV system, you will have to have the whole RA face a re-election. If you do not believe in the STV as a good system, come up with another one.

But for heaven's sake, we're not a first past the post system, so this bill will screw up the will of the people.
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Re: Recall of RA Members

Post by Bromo Ivory »

So I think the right way to do this to include the democratic integrity is one of the two following paths:

1. A recall election has to include EVERY RA MEMBER SITTING in order to preserve the minority rights upheld by the STV.

2. A number of alternates (1? 2?) are identified that will sit in the case where a RA member is unable or unwilling to finish the term. If the alternate(s) are not avaiable, or we run out of them, see #1.

Otherwise you are simply stripping the minority beliefs of representation.

I think the whole recall idea is a bad idea in the case of a RA member that isn't cooperative, but if you want to do it, the above would preserve the will of the people as determined by the STV.

And as I said before ... if you dont' think the STV is good enough to preserve the will of the people as expressed by it, you would be better off doing something else than a Frankenstein system that is more subject to gaming and stripping the minority of their representation during a term.
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Re: Recall of RA Members

Post by JerryDon Lane »

Patroklus Murakami wrote:We have been discussing by-elections and the best way to deal with the situation where an RA member resigns before the end of term.

It has also been suggested that we should empower voters to remove RA members from office if, after the election, they prove to be regularly absent or for some other reason e.g. they behave badly and disrupt meetings or they adopt policy positions which are contrary to the policies they put in their election manifestos.

I think this could be a useful addition to the powers of our citizens. We have had RA members who stayed in office but rarely turned up to meetings. We have had RA members who said one thing to get elected and then behaved abominably when in office. The power to recall our representatives (and thereby force a by-election) could allow us to 'keep them honest' with the threat that they can be removed. Otherwise we have the situation right now where it is very difficult to get rid of an inadequate, absent or poorly performing RA member; if we don't choose carefully, we are stuck with them for the whole term.

I'd be happy to draft a proposal. What do others think of the idea?
Although I'm sure your intentions are good, I would vote no on this.

This is a democracy and the people as a whole have already spoken or that particular official would not be holding the seat to begin with. Did they not bother to do their homework and check out the candidate's qualifications before they voted? Well, it happens everyday in democracies, but that's OK....that's how they work. The people will take care of that in the next election, if they agree with you; and maybe even work harder to insure more qualified candidates with personalities more suitable to their tastes are elected.

While it's true there are certain legitimate reasons to have a recall option in some representative democracies, those where there are no term limits....those consisting of large constituencies where it is really impossible for the people to get to know the candidates.....those with extremely long terms of office, etc.--CDS does not consist of any of those scenarios.

Here we are small, the terms of office are relatively short and it is quite easy to get to know any candidate as well as you wish. People in CDS know one another to begin with, at least to some extent. And I believe in this particular scenario, having a recall election process can actually be dangerous to the liberty of the popular vote: Oh, your candidate didn't win? Then let's organize a recall.....You don't like a particular candidate? Let's recall that sucker.....A particular official is voting against your proposals or the tenets that you or a faction hold dear to your hearts? Just recall that individual.

No, let's all work together with maturity inside a system that has been proven to work, and make it work even better. Why not just run against them?

After the close of the U.S. Constitutional Convention in 1787 at Independence Hall, Benjamin Franklin was asked what was created...he replied, "A republic, if you can keep it."

We have that in CDS.....an SL Republic. Initiatives like this, although seemingly good at first glance, can harbor potential for detriment to these types of democracies.

I say let your voice be heard as a no on this....we have a republic.....Let's insure we keep it. The people spoke--live with that or change the status quo within the popular vote.
The Constitution is not an instrument for the government to restrain the people, it is an instrument for the people to restrain the government — lest it come to dominate our lives and interests. Patrick Henry
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Re: Recall of RA Members

Post by JerryDon Lane »

once we elect in a group of people, thats it, we are stuck with them. If we dont like it we can leave.

Well, THATS a nice representation of "Democracy"
Yes, and that's not a representation of democracy. That IS democracy. When the people elect someone, they understand they will represent them for a given term. Anything else is NOT democracy, but something less than that. Would one really expect a republic to operate on the principal of: 'you can serve until you vote a given direction that irritates me, then you are out of there?'

The latter concept would not be possible in a democratic society because in that system, someone always loses while someone else wins. Therefore, someone is always unhappy with any given political judgement call. But no, you don't have to leave because your turn will probably soon be coming up to win a call. That's the way it works.

Your proposal trifles the representative republic because it opens it up a vehicle for factions to attempt to keep removing officials they don't like and thereby thwart the will of the people. That sir, is not democracy.
The Constitution is not an instrument for the government to restrain the people, it is an instrument for the people to restrain the government — lest it come to dominate our lives and interests. Patrick Henry
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Re: Recall of RA Members

Post by Sudane Erato »

A note to the disputants in this thread... we are dealing with a RL political culture difference here. In the US and other countries with a similar system of representative democracy, periodic elections are almost sacrosanct, and recall elections are EXTREMELY rare, happening usually only with the most extremely criminal behavior, and often not even then. On the other hand, in the UK and other countries with similar systems of parliamentary democracy, it is periodic elections which are rare, and the usual elections are held more often because of disagreement about issues... if the majority party feels it may have lost support for an issue, it may seek to confirm that support among the public by calling for new elections. In that environment, the concept of a recall election is much more consistent with the practice of democracy... if there is question about the support for an individual or an issue, you go back to the people and ask them to vote.

Cries for what is and what is not democracy here are inappropriate. The issue is how do we want our democracy to function. In RL, the US model and the UK model offer two different approaches. The Greeks invented the concept, and it was nothing like either of these. Let's respectfully argue the competing merits and decide how we want ours to work.


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Re: Recall of RA Members

Post by Patroklus Murakami »

Bromo and Cleo have made important and relevant points about how a STV system like ours would work with a recall system. If we had 'First Past the Post' then the proposal outlined above would be on the same basis - a plurality is needed to vote you in and a plurality to vote you out.

I need to do some thinking about how recall could be adapted to work with our system and continue my research of RL examples. It could be that, as Bromo suggests, the recall has to be for the entire RA rather than an individual. It could be that the votes needed to stay in office would be the votes needed to get elected in the first place, i.e. the "quota" that we use for STV elections rather than a simple majority.

I don't agree with the comments that recall is inherently undemocratic. First of all, I agree with Sudane's comments; we all come from countries with rather different democratic traditions so simply saying x or y is 'undemocratic' is not very helpful. It would be more helpful to say why people think that a proposal is supportive or not of democratic principles. I think that a case can be made for recall. Just look at Toronto's, ahem, colourful Mayor. Just saying 'you elected me, you're stuck with me' does not seem to me to be fair. If the electorate had known about his many problems, including smoking crack, they may have reached a different decision at election time. It would be reasonable for Toronto electors to exercise a power to recall him from office given what we have subsequently learned about him. Sadly, they don't seem to have that power.
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Re: Recall of RA Members

Post by Rosie Gray »

Patroklus Murakami wrote: I think that a case can be made for recall. Just look at Toronto's, ahem, colourful Mayor. Just saying 'you elected me, you're stuck with me' does not seem to me to be fair. If the electorate had known about his many problems, including smoking crack, they may have reached a different decision at election time. It would be reasonable for Toronto electors to exercise a power to recall him from office given what we have subsequently learned about him. Sadly, they don't seem to have that power.
As a Canadian, I can only be highly embarrassed by the behaviour of the Mayor of our largest city. :oops: Yet, he is a good example of why recall should be available - and I agree that it is sad that they don't seem to have that power in Toronto. Should we be able to recall in the CDS if there is enough lack of support for an RA member or the Chancellor? I think there should be some means. It shouldn't be taken lightly though, I think we can all at least agree on that point.
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Re: Recall of RA Members

Post by cleopatraxigalia »

Thank you pat. The truth is we do have recall of RA members who are acting in way that would have then banned from cds. If the sc is working properly an RA member or any cifizen for that matter can be requested to be brought before the SC for committing a crime or violation, the sc is the body that will decide if the behavior warrants action ( ie: as bad as the rl example you gave ) also to be clear. If an ra member is deemed to be disrupting any meeting their peers can take a vote and they can be removed from a meeting.

As far as a recall for getting rid of people you disagree with or who's politics you don't like? You can do the following:. Lobby them. Write thoughtful intelligent arguments against their views run for election next time. Get a petition going with signatures of citizens who support your alternative views

I am wary of a process that can throw out an elected official for no good reason except you disagree or don't like them. But if you want to give a list of specific actions and circumstances that make it proper for a recall to occur I'd like to see it. But again. One rogue ra member in a system with 1/5 of a vote and a chancellor veto at that just isn't worth the disruption of a recall

The STV system requires any recall must be of the entire RA. I would entertain an entire RA recall if and only if it allows for a population change within the term and lets all of the CURRENT citizens participate in the new vote not just the same ones who voted initially. I.e. pull a new citizen list this would ensure that if a major change happens within the term we are up to date with what current citizens want. I am all for checks and balances in general and putting power in the hands of the people. So perhaps if 75 % of the population disagrees with the direction an administration is going this might be something to consider. I'd make the number a percent of the entirety of the population though not just those who voted a few months ago. If what's going on in ra is so awful to need a recall then a motivated populous will be able to get signatures of the more passive citizens too.


Applause to Sudane on her post. It is too easy to bring our rl political ideas and govt ideas and try to overlay them on what should happen in cds, but, . It doesn't work sl is different than rl in so any ways and Cds is a unique system that has a way of being all its own. We of course will look to rl for ideas sometimes but it's even better just to think out of the box and try to see how we can make cds better with novel and new ideas.

I try to think of what we can do to make our system most fair for everyone , how we can keep cds fun amd financially sound. And mostly how it can be strong enough systemically that regardless of how we grow or who is elected the system takes care of our ability to thrive to thrive with open borders and the ability to grow
Being dependent on a well defined and designed structure no matter who the individuals are is the most important thing it seems
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Re: Recall of RA Members

Post by JerryDon Lane »

Well, if you guys are going to point out the need for recall of the Mayor of Toronto, then I'll have to agree and ask you how I can help with that... :wink:

Also, as Pat suggested in his latest post, I might see nothing wrong with a system instituted to petition for a recall of the entire government, thereby forcing new elections of all sitting officials in dire cases of incompetence, corruption or inability to effectively govern for some other reason. It might even be feasible that, along side the ability for the people to petition, any two of the three branches of government could dissolve the third and force new elections for that body--sounds democratic to me.

But let me restate my views as I initially intended to state them, perhaps more clearly this time. Where I see a problem that smacks in the face of democracy, at least from my perspective, is legislation that allows for a given faction to recall any single individual they may not like or may disagree with politically.

I tried to express the points that a) there ARE democratic systems where the recall system is needed (yep, Toronto is one of them)....but b) CDS is NOT one of them due to the potential for abuse.

CDS is much too small. How many voted in the last election, 60? 70? 80? Those who have been in here longer than I can help me out with that figure.

If recall legislation were implemented, in the way it was proposed on this thread, it wouldn't be that difficult to launch a petition drive incorporating people disgruntled with the system at the time, couple them with supporters of perhaps another losing candidate or two and take the initiative petition to a vote. Theoretically, this could be done to virtually any elected official, and this is not democracy because it terminates the previous vote of the people who voted in good faith within the CDS system via having the people disregard a fair election process and concentrate a new election on only a single person.

Also on a related topic. You want the insight of a new guy here in CDS? Of course you do....*wink* There is way too much bickering and infighting in a beautiful community, jam-packed with beautiful, mature and intelligent people. All of you are, or you wouldn't be living here with any acceptance at all.

So, would this proposal, if implemented in the way it was initially proposed, diminish that problem or exacerbate it.......The reader can decide this one.
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Re: Recall of RA Members

Post by Bromo Ivory »

JerryDon Lane wrote:Well, if you guys are going to point out the need for recall of the Mayor of Toronto, then I'll have to agree and ask you how I can help with that... :wink:
Marion Barry, though, went to jail and came back and won another term as Mayor. Democracy is a strange thing indeed.
Also, as Pat suggested in his latest post, I might see nothing wrong with a system instituted to petition for a recall of the entire government, thereby forcing new elections of all sitting officials in dire cases of incompetence, corruption or inability to effectively govern for some other reason. It might even be feasible that, along side the ability for the people to petition, any two of the three branches of government could dissolve the third and force new elections for that body--sounds democratic to me.
I think the STV, which is constructed to protect minority rights, is compatible with a general call for elections, but I would caution that given the realities of CDS and the frequency of elections every 6 months, having elections between the general elections probably is more of a problem than a solution. " Aegrescit medendo." I think is probably the right term in Latin for it (roughtly tranlsated as "the disease gets worse with the treatment administered").
But let me restate my views as I initially intended to state them, perhaps more clearly this time. Where I see a problem that smacks in the face of democracy, at least from my perspective, is legislation that allows for a given faction to recall any single individual they may not like or may disagree with politically.

I tried to express the points that a) there ARE democratic systems where the recall system is needed (yep, Toronto is one of them)....but b) CDS is NOT one of them due to the potential for abuse.

CDS is much too small. How many voted in the last election, 60? 70? 80? Those who have been in here longer than I can help me out with that figure.
As Cleopatra pointed out, there is a mechanism for getting rid of truly disruptive people. It is just difficult enough so that only the truly "worthy" will get removed, and easy enough to not be a barrier in a bad case. Mayor Ford wouldn't last too long on the RA in CDS is what I am saying, basically.

If recall legislation were implemented, in the way it was proposed on this thread, it wouldn't be that difficult to launch a petition drive incorporating people disgruntled with the system at the time, couple them with supporters of perhaps another losing candidate or two and take the initiative petition to a vote. Theoretically, this could be done to virtually any elected official, and this is not democracy because it terminates the previous vote of the people who voted in good faith within the CDS system via having the people disregard a fair election process and concentrate a new election on only a single person.

Also on a related topic. You want the insight of a new guy here in CDS? Of course you do....*wink* There is way too much bickering and infighting in a beautiful community, jam-packed with beautiful, mature and intelligent people. All of you are, or you wouldn't be living here with any acceptance at all.

So, would this proposal, if implemented in the way it was initially proposed, diminish that problem or exacerbate it.......The reader can decide this one.[/quote]
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Re: Recall of RA Members

Post by cleopatraxigalia »

Rosie.

You mention recall of a chancellor or Representative Assembly.

Why not also of the Scientific Council ?
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Re: Recall of RA Members

Post by Cadence Theas »

It can't be done Cleo, not without a change to the constitution:

Section 1 – The Scientific Council

The Scientific Council (SC) is a self-selected meritocracy. Its governmental role is to interpret and enforce the constitution. Its service roll (ed. note: sic) is to resolve citizen disputes and moderate user forums and events.

Section 2 – The Scientific Council Body

The SC is comprised of Professors, Chairs, and a single SC Dean. Professors are chosen at the recommendation of current members based on demonstrated skill and desire to uphold the constitution without bias. Chairs are nominated by the Dean and approved by a simple majority vote. There are a maximum of nine Chairs available, with the Dean receiving one. Members of the SC can be voted out with a 2/3 majority. (my emphasis)

That majority is of the SC itself, not the citizenry of CDS

See: http://portal.slcds.info/index.php/cds- ... c-council/

With all the criticism of other government officials and governing bodies, you might look at the log in your own eye first…..viewtopic.php?f=7&t=4321&start=60
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Re: Recall of RA Members

Post by Spider22997 »

I have a question, how long has Cleo been in office and is she eligible for removal? has she served 1/3 of her term yet.
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Re: Recall of RA Members

Post by cleopatraxigalia »

Four of the five votes of the ra can change the constitution
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Re: Recall of RA Members

Post by cleopatraxigalia »

Cadence thank you. I was posing this question to rosie amd was not in any way saying we should remove anyone. Just wondering if the recall idea is meant for all government bodies or only RA amd chancellor? And if so why.

Laws should be made for long term improvement of a system not for individual circumstances. We need to assess the overall impact to as many aspects of the system as possible as things do not occur in a vacuum.

During elections it is wise to critique the government in my opinion. And
make comments on their record of accomplishment and failure


We do not all judge success and failure by the same standards. That makes it interesting to me
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