Parrian Elections

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Parrian Elections

Post  Bodhin on Thu May 07, 2009 8:32 pm

Since I have been asked how the new Parrian election system works, I thought I would post this description of how we elect our leaders. The author is our city patron, Solontus, God of the Stars.

Message #798.
Date: 24-1-2009 at 20:45.
From: Solontus, god of the stars [God].
To : Everyone.
Subj: New Election System.


Since the revolution of the 820s in Parrius and the ignorant replacement of the initial
government with foreign ideas without empathy for Parrius's history or personality, the city has been governed by a similar elected 'representative democracy' as seen in
Mercinae and Thakria. Only Mercinae stays true to this representative democracy;
Thakria tempers it with the vetoes and weighted votes of incumbent barons and the
city's patron. When Parrius appointed me its first patron, I assessed the troubles of
governance in these other cities...

Unlike the other two city-states, a typical representative system would not work in
Parrius with so few citizens encouraged to be individualistic and opinionated, for with
so few and unique views, there are far fewer common interests to represent. Therefore,the representative cannot be selected to represent, but to lead according to their own individual views. An equal vote in such a situation is not actually equal; the equality of voting rights creates an inequality of wisdom and seniority which ultimately neglects the evolving history of a city-state. The end-result I saw for Parrius, were it to be a representative democracy yet fiercely individualist and elitist, would be a cycle of revolutions which would attempt to unify individual opinions into a common goal, but ultimately result in failure and apathy -- a broken city-state with ignorant leadership, constantly renewing itself with each generation as it was taken further from its history and desires.

In response, I devised an altogether different means of selection. To correct the
implicit fallacy of an 'equal vote' and place greatest emphasis on the continuity of a
city's history and the wisdom it has gathered over the ages, the citizens of Parrius
elected its government by a public vote, each one weighted according to that person's seniority as a Parrian. The estimations of each vote was rough but satisfactory and the barons elected by this system were typically very astute, experienced and active. It was the seed for a greater system that never came into being, for an ignorant new generation replaced it without understanding its strengths. A century later, I attempted to resurrect a vestige of this system, in which every citizen had sub-baronial authority while a loose central government of barons maintained the economy and military. It was a stepping stone that also fell to the legacy of Parrius, a city of revolutions, and could not complete its form in time.

The new electoral system which I have explained either in part or full to recent barons
takes the following form. Each citizen has an implied worth represented by 'voices'.
Voices are the invisible CCC population of the city who would rally behind that
citizen. A citizen begins with a base number of voices equal to how many years they
have been a Parrian. These voices are doubled if the citizen occupies a position of
power, such as guildmaster or baron. A citizen acquires more voices through actions
that benefit the city such as contributing resources, running lucrative shops, fending
off enemies, attacking enemies, participating in government and many other actions
which may be accurately accounted for, thanks to recent developments in Avalon.

Each citizen 'uses' these voices by deciding whom they support, called 'vouching', and
the top three (at the moment) become elders (barons). To announce your interest in
becoming an elder, you must always vouch for yourself. This action indicates to the
rest of Parrius that you wish to lead. You may also vouch for someone else, provided
they have declared their interest; in this way, you 'vote'. Lastly, you may vouch
against someone, using all of your voices in an attempt to prevent someone from
obtaining power. In all three cases, vouching uses all of your voices -- you may not
(as of the time of this writing) spread your support across multiple people. Once you
vouch for someone, you implicitly maintain that support until you vouch otherwise. It
is a continuous process of changing allegiances.

Unlike elections which spring into being through questioning and last a fixed amount of
time, electing by this system has no fixed beginning or end. If you withdraw your
support for someone, they may lose their position as a result. When enough citizens
change their support such that one or more current elders would lose their position, an election begins. During this time, the elder in question maintains their power until a successor emerges. The election does not end until a new equilibrium emerges among the citizens, with each of the elders sustaining support from their group of citizens.

For example, take the current scenario of Scorpio, Cecil and Illyism as elders. Let us
say hypothetically that Scorpio has the support of Pryrates, Dante, Pelanger, Ambrosius and Signet; Cecil has the support of Anakin, Romago, Zerro, Firentz and Mysterin; and Illyism has the support of Borrak, Axel, Kryeparth, Relk and Bodhin. Those who have not supported anyone yet are Phandros, Palim and Darmot. Should, say, two of Scorpio's supporters (Pryrates and Signet) withdraw their support and vouch for someone else, an election would ensue. Signet vouches for herself and Pryrates vouches for her. Anakin then vouches for himself, withdrawing support from Cecil; Cecil still retains enough support to be an elder for the time being. There are now three candidates for elder: Scorpio, Anakin and Signet, with Scorpio still in the lead but not a clear winner. Dante too withdraws from Scorpio and vouches for Anakin. Because of the seniority of both Anakin and Dante, Anakin is now in the lead by only a fraction, Signet second and Scorpio trailing. To quickly end the contention, Signet withdraws support for herself and backs Anakin. Anakin becomes the winner with Dante, Relk, Signet and, implicitly, Pryrates.

If you have questions about this method, be sure to ask. I will post further details
about the new government as the moment of its implementation approaches. However, until such a time as this system is implemented in Avalon properly, I have agreed to oversee and effect the replacement of dormant, corrupt or otherwise incompetent elders through this new election system by hand. I urge Parrius to make sparing use of elections and only resort to them when they are necessary. Performing elections by hand requires intense focus. Moreover, upheavals in the authority of Parrius at this point in its transition will only create confusion and delay the government's development.

For those candidates in the current election, I request that you each inform me whether you wish to abide by this new system or continue with the old one. A majority who wish to use the new system will start a fresh election using this form, otherwise the present election for expediency will finish normally and I will overlook this momentary lapse.

Solontus, god of the stars

Written by my hand on the 4th of Hindyear, in the year 1040.
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Bodhin
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Re: Parrian Elections

Post  illeism on Sun May 10, 2009 3:35 am

type WIDTH 255 and read the post again, it's a lot better when pasting texts somewhere.
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illeism
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Re: Parrian Elections

Post  Bodhin on Tue Feb 22, 2011 6:12 pm

In the intervening years since this was instituted, the new election system has gone by the wayside. Lord Solontus is rarely visible in the land and the city has resumed having baron elections in the traditional system, although the participants quietly wonder if they will be punished by Lord Solontus should he return!
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Bodhin
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Whereabouts : Leaf Lane, Parrius
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Re: Parrian Elections

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