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Archive for January, 2012

Direct Democracy – False Hope

I wrote in October 2011 about Gerald Celente and his promotion of Direct Democracy. He continues to promote this idea. I still think it is a bad idea. Here’s why.

With any kind of democracy, everything is winner-take-all. If a bill comes up in Congress, but we have instituted Direct Democracy via the internet, we will have more people voting (not a bad thing), but we still have only one result, and if the result is not what I would have voted for, my money nevertheless is used to pay for it.

With cantons, my money is NEVER spent on something I don’t support, as long as my canton acts according to my principles and values. If it chooses to do otherwise, I find another canton next year, and my old canton is thus diminished by at least one person’s taxes. Do you see the difference?

Direct democracy would be better, but it still isn’t good enough. Cantons are just as easy to establish as Direct Democracy, and produce better results in that every person pays for only what they want. Direct Democracy is still winner-take-all, and results in the dreaded “tyranny of the majority”. Why go there when there is something better?

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How? How would cantons work?

I got a very challenging comment from Breck in Spokane:

OK Dwight, I’ve read up to May 2010. I think that’s a reasonable amount of the website to have studied before breaking off and going directly to the “source” – you – to ask for an example of how the canton works. Thus far I have a GENERAL idea of what you are talking about but that’s all. I believe you need to lay this out in more detail at the place on the website where most people will first get into your thoughts. I have a difficult time reading along on anyone’s thoughts and ideas without having some “Site Plan” that I can use as an outline and roadmap for the whole concept. Thanks, Breck in Spokane

Breck, thanks for your very well-written and thoughtful comment. Not for lack of trying, but I have to admit I don’t have a good answer. This blog has been a journey of discovery for me. I learn things from thinking and writing about them. I have learned a lot about why society is ailing today, and I have some idea about what needs to be done. But, as you see, I am not completely “there” yet. Work with me.

Let me tell you where I am today with regard to the question “how”. My belief is that the process of repair of society starts at the bottom, so I am in the process of trying to create cantons locally. I have started a meetup group called South Jersey Canton Formation Group. So far I have gotten one person to join, and that person appears to be a bit of a phantom, since I have not been able to contact him/her in any way. But I’m not done trying to get local people interested.

What would we do? We would create “virtual” cantons, giving them names, and discussing what their values and principles would be. The next step would be to get people to sign on with these virtual cantons, with the hope that they would become less “virtual” and more “actual” cantons, with a true legal status and genuine contracts. The cantons would work together to get control of the local taxes paid by the taxpayer/members of the cantons. This is clearly the hardest part (and none of the parts are easy; please note gift for understatement). It would require putting pressure on the local government to cede a power it has no intention of ceding. The only way this can be accomplished is by the People standing up for their rights.

My goals in creating local cantons are simple:

1) Redistribute power back to the people to whom it belongs, or, said differently, let the taxpayers determine what their taxes pay for. What does this accomplish? It reverses the long-standing consolidation of power in too few hands that has been hoovering the taxes of the middle class into the pockets of the elites (oligarchs and plutocrats) who own us serfs. It restores the dignity of the serfs, so that they can function again in their full human capacity.

2) Right-size government. How can we right-size government? It cannot be accomplished by turning over the fruits of our labor (taxes) to the political elite who spend them for their own benefit. When we take back control of the fruits of our labor that are seized as taxes, we assign ownership to our canton, to be spent for OUR benefit, according to OUR principles and values. Whatever doesn’t get paid for gets trimmed.

The goals are simple; the accomplishment is mind-bogglingly difficult.

If it seems I am slow to accomplish my aims, please consider that I have a fulltime job (thank God) that occupies most of my days, and other activities in my life that take up much of the time I am not working. Life is like that. So, I am doing what I can, when I can, with my limited gifts.

My first sign wave

I had a day off from work today because of a midday doctor’s appointment. Having received my yard signs around Christmas, I decided it was a good day to be a fool. From 8:15 until 9:15 this morning I stood in 35 degree weather along a busy highway (Route 70 East) in my hometown (Cherry Hill, NJ), holding my beautiful sign. Join a Canton signI am a fool, of course. I thought that would be enough time to entice someone, at least ONE, to join me in starting a first canton here. I console myself by realizing that, in some very small way, I have introduced a new word to a few people’s vocabulary: canton.

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