A plea to the citizenry...

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Pelanor Eldrich
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A plea to the citizenry...

Post by Pelanor Eldrich »

In the coming days and weeks we're going to be discussing, debating and tackling some very thorny issues: Federation vs. Republic, Judiciary, Citizenship, Role of the Guild, Franchulates/Expansion, Developing CN.

There are also issues close to me personally and that keep me awake at night: One edelweiss or two on my coat-of-arms, max number of prims for judicial wigs, and of course the competence of Prok to flip a coin for ADR (jk). :)

I'd like the debate to stay civil and reasonable and for people to remember that it's not always about who is right or wrong or who makes the best argument. We're here to build a community and a virtual nation. We must keep an open mind and compromise, negotiate, work together and give things a try.

I don't want to see us fracture and feel alienated and leave. When flamewars erupt, people can feel disenfranchised, disaffected or just plain dissed. I also believe to some extent (like Philip) that forums/USENET can foster flamewars by their very format. In world group meetings seem less flamy. Let us work together to gain community consensus and to build a vibrant long-lasting community.

There are many CDS naysayers out there. In fact, of the SL VIPs who have posted about the CDS some wish us well but not a single one thinks our little experiment will work, grow or prosper.

Let's prove them wrong...

Last edited by Pelanor Eldrich on Wed Oct 11, 2006 11:54 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Post by Sudane Erato »

Bravo, Pel! I think you have everyone's complete support in this expression of confidence in our community.

Sudane.....

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Post by Mikael Lunardi »

Agreed---I think that we (speaking as if I am a member already) stand at a crucial historical moment and that the choices now will have very far reaching effects.

I am very hopeful that this can be done, positively, with a growing of solidarity and comraderie, as opposed to a more powerful group alienating a less powerful group.

Some of the decisions I think would need almost universal agreement to be jsutified.

mL

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Post by Ashcroft Burnham »

[quote="Mikael Lunardi":1xlclsi7]Some of the decisions I think would need almost universal agreement to be justified.[/quote:1xlclsi7]

What if no such agreement can be reached? How then to resolve the conflict?

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Post by Mikael Lunardi »

That is indeed the difficult part.....Compromise.

I think, as I stated in my earlier topic posted, that the big thing is that we all need to agree to a Vision, whichever vision, and composed of whatever parts of the two diametrics of Expansion or Enclavness---once the vision is agreed upon then the rest will go much smoother.

And even if sometimes it seems that all are in agreement about The Vision----far fewer post on here, or scan the boards, on a regular basis than are actual citizens.

mL

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Post by Ashcroft Burnham »

[quote="Mikael Lunardi":1cliatc8]That is indeed the difficult part.....Compromise.[/quote:1cliatc8]

And if there is no compromise on which there is universal agreement?

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Post by Ranma Tardis »

[quote="Ashcroft Burnham":32agjsj8][quote="Mikael Lunardi":32agjsj8]Some of the decisions I think would need almost universal agreement to be justified.[/quote:32agjsj8]

What if no such agreement can be reached? How then to resolve the conflict?[/quote:32agjsj8]

I am worried that a majority of the citizens will force their will apron a minority. What can the minority do when a decision comes down they do not like without leaving?
The RA has been passing Acts at an ever increasing speed. The meetings are at a bad time for the residents of North America. This effetely leaves them out of the decision process. The next few Acts are going to change the CDS into something completely different.
It has been less than 6 months since the last group broke away. Are we condemned to keep repeating the same cycle over and over again? This is the true reason for the small size of the CDS and not stagnation.

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Post by Mikael Lunardi »

Then maybe those actions should not be pursued. I don't know.

With a community as small as NFS, and as old, it would be wrong to run off long standing citizens over new progressions in action.

Of course the last three of my posts are opinion, and as it stands I am not even a landowner or voting citizen, but I believe the tragety would be to forfeit the community for progress toward a large scale nation.

It is easy to ask rhetorics about "what if?", it is harder to make a concrete ideal that all subscribe to.

Believe me when I say I am very intriqued by the idea of the large scale progress toward an expansive nation---but I am disheartened when citizens in good standing that I have talked with seem to be dismayed or completely against the idea. I understand that in a group of 3 you are likely to find 3 slightly different opinions on any given issue---

The difficulty that I percieve is that in developing policies---the Judiciary System, Franchulettes, Citizenship, Economic Policy---anything that is done with ONLY expansion (from outside existing areas), instead of natural inward ->out expansion or betterment of the existing community, will alienate a good many citizens who are presently happy with the scope of the community and see no need for further, rapid external growth.

I am not trying to be combative or act as if I have the answers, I do not!, but I know I would not like to see some exodus happen as a result of the desire to expand.

mL

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Post by Ashcroft Burnham »

[quote="Ranma Tardis":1046ru3f]I am worried that a majority of the citizens will force their will apron a minority. What can the minority do when a decision comes down they do not like without leaving?[/quote:1046ru3f]

The whole point of democracy is compromise: one joins on the basis that one will have a say in how things are run, that, if one succeeds in achieving what one wants to acheive through the properly controlled process, others who did not agree must nonetheless abide by what has been decided, but that, if the instiutions that are empowered to decide such things make a decision with which one does not agree, then one must, in the interests of the greater good of a formalised way of resolving such conflicts, live with that, too. If one is not prepared to live under rules with at least some of which one disagrees, then one cannot simumtaneously expect to reap the benefits of democratic government. Unless and until everyone agrees on everything (which is manifestly improbable), there are only two real choices: (1) live in anarchy, with conflicts not being resolved at all; or (2) live in a state of law and order in which conflicts are formally resolved, but one has to accept it, whether one likes it or not, if conflicts are not resolved in one's favour. The latter is better than the former, and democracy is the best form of the latter model. It is not perfect, but, until everybody starts off by agreeing, nothing ever will be.

[quote:1046ru3f]The RA has been passing Acts at an ever increasing speed. The meetings are at a bad time for the residents of North America. This effetely leaves them out of the decision process.[/quote:1046ru3f]

It is unfortunate that the Representative Assembly cannot meet at a time convenient to all citizens, but, with the timezone differences inherent in SecondLife, the problem is intractable.

However, the problem is very much mitigated if discussions as to legislation take place at due length on the forums in advance, as it has with most of the recent legislation.

[quote:1046ru3f]It has been less than 6 months since the last group broke away. Are we condemned to keep repeating the same cycle over and over again? This is the true reason for the small size of the CDS and not stagnation.[/quote:1046ru3f]

There was only one schism, and the breakaway group is currently little more than half our size, and we are growing rapidly. Very soon indeed, we will have over fifty citizens. If it really is true that people will inevitably leave en masse whenever we change the way that we do things to people's disliking, then any sort of democracy in SecondLife is bound to fail. Because I believe in the value of what we are doing here, I very much hope that that is not so, and it does us no favours to act on a premise that would entail that what we seek to achieve can never truly be acheived.

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Post by Mikael Lunardi »

Understood sir.

Which is why this poet would never want to be president (of the USA), or Chancellor of NFS----I empathize with all points of view equally.

Has consideration been given that the CDS be a sort of UN type assembly, and each community join it as their progress deems it a necessity? In the mean time we can offer assitance and diplomatic aid to those areas interested in growing as we have, and offer our documents and history as a profile to grow from, instead of a mandated rule that they uphold our exact principals.
Perhaps NFS makes more sense to grow from inside out, and CDS be the overall organization that connects it with outside communities--instead of annexing those communities INTO NFS/CN.

That is but one idea that I have, and if this IS the exact idea of CDS then my apologies, but I have been under the impression that the CDS was the term for the growing nation, with NFS the capitol and CN an extension of NFS proper.

mL

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Post by Ashcroft Burnham »

[quote="Mikael Lunardi":3tpo9vtw]Then maybe those actions should not be pursued. I don't know.

With a community as small as NFS, and as old, it would be wrong to run off long standing citizens over new progressions in action.

Of course the last three of my posts are opinion, and as it stands I am not even a landowner or voting citizen, but I believe the tragedy would be to forfeit the community for progress toward a large scale nation.

It is easy to ask rhetorics about "what if?", it is harder to make a concrete ideal that all subscribe to.[/quote:3tpo9vtw]

I was not trying to be difficult, I hope that you understand: the point was simply that, if one should only make a decision about what to do in relation to important matters if there is almost universal agreement, very little of importance will ever be decided. It is no answer to say that, if people disagree about what should be done, then nothing should be done, as that would automatically resolve the dispute in favour of those who favour doing nothing, even if they are in the minority and advocate doing nothing for reasons that are insubstantial.

I do agree, however, that it is good to try to seek agreement and compromise where it is possible - much of value can be acheived by such a method, but it must be borne in mind that, very often (especially when people know that they might get everything their own way just by holding out, as those who are resistent to change would if the status quo was the default position when there was no near-universal consensus) compromise acceptable to all simply cannot be reached, and there simply is no possible option (including doing nothing) with which at least a significant proportion of the population are not substantially unhappy. In those circumstances, one must be able to be decicive, and do what is right, even if one cannot find universal consensus.

[quote:3tpo9vtw]Believe me when I say I am very intriqued by the idea of the large scale progress toward an expansive nation---but I am disheartened when citizens in good standing that I have talked with seem to be dismayed or completely against the idea. I understand that in a group of 3 you are likely to find 3 slightly different opinions on any given issue---

The difficulty that I percieve is that in developing policies---the Judiciary System, Franchulettes, Citizenship, Economic Policy---anything that is done with ONLY expansion (from outside existing areas), instead of natural inward ->out expansion or betterment of the existing community, will alienate a good many citizens who are presently happy with the scope of the community and see no need for further, rapid external growth.[/quote:3tpo9vtw]

I quite agree that it is very important to balance the interests of exsting and long-standing citizens against the interests of new or potential incoming citizens. Indeed, if things are done properly, good, sustainable expansion will bring substantial simultaneous benefits to both groups. If expansion is done with care, the interests of the groups can coincide, and not conflict.

[quote:3tpo9vtw]I am not trying to be combative or act as if I have the answers, I do not!, but I know I would not like to see some exodus happen as a result of the desire to expand.[/quote:3tpo9vtw]

I quite understand - I very much value your contributions and am very pleased that you are so keen to join our community and help to develop our economy. Although economics is not my area of expertise, and thus I cannot evaluate with accuracy whether your ideas are good or not, it is a great boon to our community that there is somebody so interested in helping to develop its economy with so many of what at the very least superficially seem to be good ideas. The idea of a securities exchange is especially fascinating - we could really become an economic powerhouse if one of those took off.

The point that I was making was just about the need to have consensus: while it is best if everyone agrees, sometimes things have to be done even when not everyone agrees, as doing nothing is often worse than doing something with which some people are unhappy.

Last edited by Ashcroft Burnham on Thu Oct 12, 2006 12:41 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Post by Ashcroft Burnham »

[quote="Mikael Lunardi":3t1axte5]Has consideration been given that the CDS be a sort of UN type assembly, and each community join it as their progress deems it a necessity? In the mean time we can offer assitance and diplomatic aid to those areas interested in growing as we have, and offer our documents and history as a profile to grow from, instead of a mandated rule that they uphold our exact principals.

Perhaps NFS makes more sense to grow from inside out, and CDS be the overall organization that connects it with outside communities--instead of annexing those communities INTO NFS/CN.[/quote:3t1axte5]

That is not what the CDS has ever aspired to be: there is, after all, little use in having a United Nations if there are only one or two entities in the whole of SecondLife that can be called nations.

What we seek to annexe with the franchulates proposal are not already existing, functioning virtual nations with their own virtual governments, but ungoverned, privately owned land, whose citizens will join us because they want our government, rather than because they want their government to be able to interface with others. The benefits of enforcable contracts and shared ban lists, for example, are entirely lost if each tiny parcel of land has its own rules of contract law and its own rules of law as to when people may be banned.

As I hope to post soon on a thread dedicated to building civil soceity, what we, I hope, are striving to achieve is more than a loose collective of otherwise unconnected individuals or groups, banding together to solve one or two specific problems and nothing else, but a true nation, a true civil soceity, in a virtual world: the first of its kind anywhere, and something that goes far beyond the loose and problem- or interest-specific groups that have so far sprung up in SL, valuable though some of those groups can be.

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Post by Mikael Lunardi »

I understand a bit better about the Franculettes, thank you.

Interesting, indeed, your vision of a nation---

I look forward to your post!

mL

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We must protect minority rights.

Post by Pelanor Eldrich »

[quote="Ranma Tardis":2jsvs3k0]
I am worried that a majority of the citizens will force their will apron a minority. What can the minority do when a decision comes down they do not like without leaving?
The RA has been passing Acts at an ever increasing speed. The meetings are at a bad time for the residents of North America. This effetely leaves them out of the decision process. The next few Acts are going to change the CDS into something completely different.
It has been less than 6 months since the last group broke away. Are we condemned to keep repeating the same cycle over and over again? This is the true reason for the small size of the CDS and not stagnation.[/quote:2jsvs3k0]

I'm quoting Prok, who is quoting someone else and this is out of context, but I feel it's apropos:

[quote:2jsvs3k0]"Cyberpopulism fails to provide a workable mechanism for protecting the liberties of minorities and dissenters. And in attempting to remedy this failing, cyberpopulism moves towards an equally unworkable neoliberal regime of unanimous consent and dissenter exit."[/quote:2jsvs3k0]

We must ber [i:2jsvs3k0]very[/i:2jsvs3k0] careful not trample the rights of minorities while at the same time avoiding exodus and unianimity. The SC really has to be vigilant to avoid minority rights from being trampled. The RA has to be careful to avoid exodus. No one really wants unanimous groupthink. Pace of change must also be considered. It's a delicate balance.

BTW Ranma San, I would love to see you independently submit some legislation. I think we can address some of your needs. I think the majority of the RA live in north america, and yes the time sucks. :)

Last edited by Pelanor Eldrich on Thu Oct 12, 2006 1:25 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Post by Ranma Tardis »

[quote="Ashcroft Burnham":37yv6z9e][quote="Mikael Lunardi":37yv6z9e]Has consideration been given that the CDS be a sort of UN type assembly, and each community join it as their progress deems it a necessity? In the mean time we can offer assitance and diplomatic aid to those areas interested in growing as we have, and offer our documents and history as a profile to grow from, instead of a mandated rule that they uphold our exact principals.

Perhaps NFS makes more sense to grow from inside out, and CDS be the overall organization that connects it with outside communities--instead of annexing those communities INTO NFS/CN.[/quote:37yv6z9e]

That is not what the CDS has ever aspired to be: there is, after all, little use in having a United Nations if there are only one or two entities in the whole of SecondLife that can be called nations.

What we seek to annexe with the franchulates proposal are not already existing, functioning virtual nations with their own virtual governments, but ungoverned, privately owned land, whose citizens will join us because they want our government, rather than because they want their government to be able to interface with others. The benefits of enforcable contracts and shared ban lists, for example, are entirely lost if each tiny parcel of land has its own rules of contract law and its own rules of law as to when people may be banned.

As I hope to post soon on a thread dedicated to building civil soceity, what we, I hope, are striving to achieve is more than a loose collective of otherwise unconnected individuals or groups, banding together to solve one or two specific problems and nothing else, but a true nation, a true civil soceity, in a virtual world: the first of its kind anywhere, and something that goes far beyond the loose and problem- or interest-specific groups that have so far sprung up in SL, valuable though some of those groups can be.[/quote:37yv6z9e]

You have not answered my question! What does the minority do when the majority insists on an ever greater pace of change? These self interest groups are already here and have been here since the beginning.
Does the minority have to give ground on all decisions? I can live with the Judiciary Act. I really dislike the ideal of Franchulettes. It goes against everything the founders intended for Neualtenburg. The concept of landless Citizens I am totally against and will not tolerate. When this passes I am off to Caledon! The Economic Policy confuses me, are the landowners going to have to start paying more and more for SL economics? I will not pay for the "landless" and their votes to benefit the few! This is how I see events progressing. I came to Neualtenburg to get away from the greifing and disorder of the mainland. I did not come here to be part of someone’s ambitious expansion project. I certainly will not pay for it.

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