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What if government poll


What if Government Poll  

8 members have voted

  1. 1. If you could change the size of the US to make it into a government that you think would be best for its citizens, which would you pick?

    • Global Government: A World Government aimed at replicating something akin to the Federation from Start Trek. The US would just be one representative within this.
    • Continent-sized Government composed of several nations: Think continent-sized governments like the European Union but with more central authority. US would be one representative in this.
    • National Government composed of several states: Think the US as it is today
    • Regional Governments: Say the US broke up into regional governments -- Deep South, Midwest, West Coast, New England, etc.
    • State Governments: All the states becomes their own sovereign nations.
    • Local Government: All the states themselves would be fragmented into county-sized countries.
      0
    • City state governments: Same as local government, except that cities with over 100,000 people becomes their own city-states.
      0
    • Personal governments: Each individual is a sovereign nation with its own individual laws. (i.e. anarchy)
  2. 2. If you had to choose one over the other, what would you choose?

    • Equality even if its unfair -- treating everyone equally. [ex. Hiring a wheelchair bound employee equally with a non-handicapped employee, although the handicap person will have to go up a 20 steps to work.]]
    • Fairness even if its unequal -- giving everyone what they need to succeed. [ex. Hiring the above equally, but also providing a wheelchair ramp for the one handicapped employee so they can get into the building.]
  3. 3. If you had to choose between global government and anarchy, which would you pick?

    • Global government
    • Anarchy
  4. 4. Which would be the best form of global government if these were your only option?

    • One dominated by RW Populist strongman
      0
    • One dominated by a LW Populist idealogue
    • One dominated by a theocratic traditionalist
    • One dominated by a fiscal, governmental conservative in the style of Ronald Reagan or Margaret Thatcher.
    • One dominated by a committee of about 11 leaders randomly chosen each year from among all nations, requiring a majority vote from the leaders to pass anything in the executive branch.
    • One dominated by a a committee similar to the above, but elected rather than randomized.
      0
    • One dominated by the United States -- i.e. the US Annexed the world.
      0
    • One dominated by a Barack Obama-style liberal.
    • One dominated by an FDR, LBJ, Elizabeth Warren-style Progressive -- an action-oriented -ideas mentality.
    • One dominated by Scandinavian-style Social Democracy
    • One dominated by Swiss-style Capitalistic, Conservative Socialism
      0
    • One dominated by Kanye West
      0
  5. 5. Which would be the best alternative to traditional government?

    • If corporations could create their own governments with the employees and their family unit as citizens of their created sovereign nation. You lose citizenship if you are fired.
    • If social media created governments that you could choose and sign up for in which you are bound by the laws of that social media government of your choice. You lose citizenship if you sign up with another social media account.


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1. Somewhere between state and local. States vary so much in population. California could be broken up into a few. On the other hand, combining Washington and Oregon and Northern California into a nation might make sense. But >300M in a country is not a human scale IMHO.

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53 minutes ago, Anthony_270 said:

2. Don't understand this one.

It's sort of going back to the equality vs equity argument. 

Equality and Fairness often overlap, but they don't always overlap. 

For instance, equality under the law is not always enough or is not always fair. Similarly, being fair can cause an inequality in the law as it will give extra benefits to a group in an effort to bring fairness. My example, as you can see, is the situation with the handicapped person. The special accommodation which will allow them to do their job or do it easier. 

Another way to see it is this way: 

1. A society that doesn't embrace equality or fairness might openly discriminate against the handicapped worker, even if it isn't a job that requires legs or much physical work. They might discriminate either because they don't want a handicapped employee, don't want to be forced to provide special accommodations, or because they think that there could be a time when they need someone to have legs to run a rare errand.

2. A society that embraces equality, but isn't inspired towards fairness, would hire the handicapped worker based on merit, but would not necessarily seek special accommodations or extra health-related allowances at work since these accommodations won't be given to the other employees. I use an extreme example in which there is a 20-step stair to get to the front door. The wheelchair person would struggle daily to go to and from work. While it won't prevent him form working, it's fundamentally unfair that he hasn't ability to easily get into the building, even if it isn't the fault of the business. It's a lack of foresight by the architect. 

3. A society that embraces fairness, will embrace most of equality, but will allow areas of inequality if its aimed at leveling things out in a way that makes life fairer for the person or people likely to lose out with some sort of special accommodation. Basically, give people what they need to succeed. In my example, the business or government, believing in fairness, provides reasonable accommodations and special job-protection for clear disability health-related absences from work for an agreed number of days. Let's assume the person in the wheel chair is a great work, but they have to do more medical checkups than most people because of their condition. 

There's some people that think equality is enough, even if it leaves a residual unfairness for a minority of people. These people generally believe these people should just have to live with working much harder than most people to succeed. I understand the logic of this, but I personally think that sort of undermines a lot of potential in this minority population as they aren't going to be able to do their best for themselves or for a company or for society if they're slugging around day-to-day in a way that can't often be empathized by those not in the same situation. 

Obviously, it's not an either/or things. I think most people can go only so far on "fairness" because it becomes fundamentally "unfair" and completely breaks from "equality." 

 

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My main reason for supporting World Government is that I think most wars are fought between nations because of old rivalries, over resources, trade, religious reasons etc. Perhaps, I'm optimistic in thinking removing borders completely and having a yearly-rotating committee of World Leaders would diminish the number of wars to almost zero, would be better able to shift resources, workers, etc. I think Star Trek just really converted me to a Utopia of a World Government when I was a little kid, specifically ST: TNG. 

Naturally, it could go bad too. For instance, I wouldn't want a world government run by Donald Trump, Vladimir Putin, Kim Jong Il, or Hu Jintao. 

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46 minutes ago, vcczar said:

It's sort of going back to the equality vs equity argument. 

Equality and Fairness often overlap, but they don't always overlap. 

For instance, equality under the law is not always enough or is not always fair. Similarly, being fair can cause an inequality in the law as it will give extra benefits to a group in an effort to bring fairness. My example, as you can see, is the situation with the handicapped person. The special accommodation which will allow them to do their job or do it easier. 

Another way to see it is this way: 

1. A society that doesn't embrace equality or fairness might openly discriminate against the handicapped worker, even if it isn't a job that requires legs or much physical work. They might discriminate either because they don't want a handicapped employee, don't want to be forced to provide special accommodations, or because they think that there could be a time when they need someone to have legs to run a rare errand.

2. A society that embraces equality, but isn't inspired towards fairness, would hire the handicapped worker based on merit, but would not necessarily seek special accommodations or extra health-related allowances at work since these accommodations won't be given to the other employees. I use an extreme example in which there is a 20-step stair to get to the front door. The wheelchair person would struggle daily to go to and from work. While it won't prevent him form working, it's fundamentally unfair that he hasn't ability to easily get into the building, even if it isn't the fault of the business. It's a lack of foresight by the architect. 

3. A society that embraces fairness, will embrace most of equality, but will allow areas of inequality if its aimed at leveling things out in a way that makes life fairer for the person or people likely to lose out with some sort of special accommodation. Basically, give people what they need to succeed. In my example, the business or government, believing in fairness, provides reasonable accommodations and special job-protection for clear disability health-related absences from work for an agreed number of days. Let's assume the person in the wheel chair is a great work, but they have to do more medical checkups than most people because of their condition. 

There's some people that think equality is enough, even if it leaves a residual unfairness for a minority of people. These people generally believe these people should just have to live with working much harder than most people to succeed. I understand the logic of this, but I personally think that sort of undermines a lot of potential in this minority population as they aren't going to be able to do their best for themselves or for a company or for society if they're slugging around day-to-day in a way that can't often be empathized by those not in the same situation. 

Obviously, it's not an either/or things. I think most people can go only so far on "fairness" because it becomes fundamentally "unfair" and completely breaks from "equality." 

 

I have a hard time parsing the words here.

Treating everyone with one set of consistent rules in law ('equality') doesn't mean they have the same outcomes. A referee might apply consistent rules for a season, but one team wins every game and another loses every one. I think we agree here that 'equality' can lead to these sorts of outcomes. But I don't see how this kind of outcome is unfair.

Similarly, treating everyone fairly doesn't mean they have the same outcomes. A 'fair' amount of dinner for my 6 year old will be more than for my 2 year old, because one is bigger than the other.

I think the way you are using the word 'fair' here I find confusing.

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1 minute ago, Anthony_270 said:

A 'fair' amount of dinner for my 6 year old will be more than more for 2 year old, because one is bigger than the other.

This is kind of what I mean by fair. By equal, they would be given the same amount. This system is fairer because your 6-year old needs more food to for his health and energy-level to having the same chance of functioning as well as your two-year old. 

For your sport analogy, a "fair" system would determine why that one team keeps winning, or more accurately, why the other team can't succeed. Special rules or regulations would apply to level the competition in this example. Perhaps one team is just faster because their team has the money to provide their players with some sort of enhancing drug, while the other team can barely fund keeping their players. In a fairness-based system, the league might either subsidize payment for drugs for the weaker team, subsidize their team in generals, or ban the enhancing drug, which while it is legal for everyone, only that team can afford it. 

 

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1 minute ago, vcczar said:

a "fair" system would determine why that one team keeps winning, or more accurately, why the other team can't succeed. Special rules or regulations would apply to level the competition in this example.

This is what I don't get. Why would this be 'fair'? I can see how if one team is cheating (using banned drugs, say), you ferret out the cheating and eliminate it. By why would one team losing be considered 'unfair'?

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10 minutes ago, Anthony_270 said:

This is what I don't get. Why would this be 'fair'? I can see how if one team is cheating (using banned drugs, say), you ferret out the cheating and eliminate it. By why would one team losing be considered 'unfair'?

It's unfair if it is systemic losing. Obviously, if it's just a one-season thing, then it might not be an issue. The sport example probably isn't good because it's just a game. That's my mistake. 

A better example would probably be applied to social situations, such as giving benefits and subsidies to poor communities that have been struggling despite legal equality for generations. 

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7 minutes ago, vcczar said:

It's unfair if it is systemic losing. Obviously, if it's just a one-season thing, then it might not be an issue. The sport example probably isn't good because it's just a game. That's my mistake. 

A better example would probably be applied to social situations, such as giving benefits and subsidies to poor communities that have been struggling despite legal equality for generations. 

Are you saying that only the same sort of outcomes indicates 'fairness' in social situations?

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15 minutes ago, Anthony_270 said:

Are you saying that only the same sort of outcomes indicates 'fairness' in social situations?

I'm saying "fairness" is leveling the playing field. Giving those in need what they need to have the same chance of success as those not in need. That is, if a huge barrier to employment for wheel-chair bound people is just being able to get in the building, you build a ramp. If a community has systemic high unemployment because those born there often can't afford college education, nice clothes for an interview or for work, job training, healthcare to stay healthy so they can work, etc., then that need is recognized and a reasonable effort is made to make the situation fairer for them since they are competing with neighborhoods that are well-educated, can afford nice clothes, have healthcare and so can stay healthy to work, etc. 

Obviously a same outcome cannot be forced, but the chances of success for a group that is not succeeding at the same level can be a little more competitive with outside help. 

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7 minutes ago, vcczar said:

If a community has systemic high unemployment because

Why do you care about people in that community who are unemployed, as opposed to people outside of that community who are unemployed? Why is one unemployed person more important than another? Why would it be fair to provide help of the sort listed above for people in one community who are unemployed, but not another community who are unemployed?

 

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31 minutes ago, Anthony_270 said:

Why do you care about people in that community who are unemployed, as opposed to people outside of that community who are unemployed? Why is one unemployed person more important than another? Why would it be fair to provide help of the sort listed above for people in one community who are unemployed, but not another community who are unemployed?

I'm using an example of where "fairness" can be applied. I care about the unemployed person from outside that community just as much. I also think they should get "fairness" based services aimed to help them success if their lack of success is due to something systematic or because of something that was outside of their control. Nowhere have I said it would be exclusive to this one group, which is only being used as one example of where the idea of "fairness" should be applied. I'm using my example because this is a stereotype of those that receive benefits. 

I'm technically unemployed right now because Winter Quarter enrollment was so low that all the adjunct professors in my department lost their courses to the non-adjuncts. As such, I'm definitely not from the group from my example. I am in the group that you are bringing up. Obviously, I care about myself and other unemployed people not from poor communities. Fortunately for me, I know I'm likely to get my job back in the Fall, although it's going to suck if I don't. 

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6 minutes ago, vcczar said:

I'm using an example of where "fairness" can be applied. I care about the unemployed person from outside that community just as much. I also think they should get "fairness" based services aimed to help them success if their lack of success is due to something systematic or because of something that was outside of their control. Nowhere have I said it would be exclusive to this one group, which is only being used as one example of where the idea of "fairness" should be applied. I'm using my example because this is a stereotype of those that receive benefits. 

I'm technically unemployed right now because Winter Quarter enrollment was so low that all the adjunct professors in my department lost their courses to the non-adjuncts. As such, I'm definitely not from the group from my example. I am in the group that you are bringing up. Obviously, I care about myself and other unemployed people not from poor communities. Fortunately for me, I know I'm likely to get my job back in the Fall, although it's going to suck if I don't. 

How is this different from communism? Take money from people who are wealthier on average, redistribute to people who are not as wealthy, to make society 'fair'?

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10 minutes ago, Anthony_270 said:

How is this different from communism? Take money from people who are wealthier on average, redistribute to people who are not as wealthy, to make society 'fair'?

I've never lived in the Communist country, so you might want to ask someone that has.  I know America is a capitalist country that does employ policies common among socialist theory. 

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2 minutes ago, vcczar said:

I've never lived in the Communist country, so you might want to ask someone that has.  I know America is a capitalist country that does employ policies common among socialist theory. 

What I'm asking is, how is this different from simply equalizing income among people through wealth redistribution?

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13 minutes ago, Anthony_270 said:

What I'm asking is, how is this different from simply equalizing income among people through wealth redistribution?

That's one way to go about "fairness," but there could be ways to fulfill the goal that doesn't require wealth redistribution. Personally, I'm not interested in punishing rich people for being rich unless they're becoming rich through illegal or unethical means. If what needs leveling -- education attainment, employment, access to healthcare, etc. can be achieved through other means I'll support it it most likely. I always think income-based payment systems are a good way to go. Income-based tuition, income-based healthcare, building free job seeking and employment services that can be reach by all, income-based public transportation tickets,  income-based student loan payments, etc. Such things could be subsidized not by the rich directly (if they oppose it, which I hope they don't), but through directing funds like from Defense to Domestic issues. 

Honestly, and this might show my lack of understanding of economics, but considering it is clearly impossible to pay back the national debt, I don't see why it hurts to incur more debt if helping everyone reach their potential could translate to more workers, more entrepreneurs, more job producers, more innovators, more consumers, more social mobility, etc. Seems like a good pay off. Invest in the people. I admit this might be idealistic. I know a lot about history, but I'm not a specialist on high-level, long-term economics. In my naïve opinion, my idea of investing in the people would ultimately pay off. However, I also think it is not necessarily the case that poor people must exist. Although, I think there are some that will seek to be poor, self-sabotage to become poor etc. I'm just saying I believe it is possible that one day we can live in a society in which no full-time worker is poor or struggling. The idea of Universal Basic Income, Negative Income Tax, Guaranteed Minimum Income, etc. might play a role in this or it might not. I'm always on the look out for ideas that are helpful but don't incur the wrath of conservative puritans or those that have some sort of strange knee-jerk animosity for poor people as if the poor were always entirely at fault for their condition.

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@vcczar The more I think about the on-ramp example, the more strange it seems to me. You have a small % of the population who might benefit significantly from a ramp instead of stairs. The cost is almost certainly in the thousands of dollars, depending on exactly what needs to be done. 

Yet, all people have strengths and weaknesses vis a vis employment in a particular position. Someone else might be fat, and so discriminated against in interviews. Should they be given thousands of dollars to hire a personal trainer? Another person might be weak at basic math - thousands for a math tutour? Another might benefit from a better wardrobe - thousands for a shopping trip to the mall? And so on, and so on, and so on.

The more I think about this example, the more it seems unfair to everyone else who is competing for the job, because it is singling out one particular dimension and ignoring the rest. In reality, everyone who didn't get the job could've used help in various ways so that they instead got the job.

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2 hours ago, Anthony_270 said:

@vcczar The more I think about the on-ramp example, the more strange it seems to me. You have a small % of the population who might benefit significantly from a ramp instead of stairs. The cost is almost certainly in the thousands of dollars, depending on exactly what needs to be done. 

Yet, all people have strengths and weaknesses vis a vis employment in a particular position. Someone else might be fat, and so discriminated against in interviews. Should they be given thousands of dollars to hire a personal trainer? Another person might be weak at basic math - thousands for a math tutour? Another might benefit from a better wardrobe - thousands for a shopping trip to the mall? And so on, and so on, and so on.

The more I think about this example, the more it seems unfair to everyone else who is competing for the job, because it is singling out one particular dimension and ignoring the rest. In reality, everyone who didn't get the job could've used help in various ways so that they instead got the job.

I don't think all of those things group together.  A person that is weak at math might have strengths elsewhere that can help them succeed in life. A handicap can be a more global problem for a person. I also think there's a clear difference between a fat person and a handicapped person. A fat person can lose weight on their own with relative ease so long as one makes a strong, consistent effort. A person that is in a wheelchair can't really do much to alleviate their issue other than find work at a place that allows reasonable accommodations. I think you have the idea (and maybe I'm wrong) that you think that I am (or perhaps progressives in general) just want to throw money around willy-nilly. It's, in fact, more reasoned. Money to provide for handicapped workers so they can work makes sense, while money for weight loss, better wardrobe (I do think interview clothes should be attainable, however), math tutor doesn't make sense (free community college is an alternative).

The ramp could be used for future handicapped workers, handicapped people coming into the business (including elderly patrons), it could be used for wheeling out other things such as supplies. Ultimately, it would be a decent investment. 

The social spending argument is more of a spectrum. I'm sure some people are extreme on social spending one way or the other, but most people aren't. You seem to be arguing in a way that's pin-pointing on an extreme social spending philosophy, of which few are interested in, including myself. 

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49 minutes ago, vcczar said:

Ultimately, it would be a decent investment.

This is a different argument, though. It's no longer about fairness, it's about an investment that pays off. For example, the biggest users of ramps are probably older people who have difficulty walking extended periods or up stairs.

49 minutes ago, vcczar said:

A person that is weak at math might have strengths elsewhere that can help them succeed in life. A handicap can be a more global problem for a person. I also think there's a clear difference between a fat person and a handicapped person. A fat person can lose weight on their own with relative ease so long as one makes a strong, consistent effort. A person that is in a wheelchair can't really do much to alleviate their issue other than find work at a place that allows reasonable accommodations.

Well ... A person who uses a wheelchair often to get about very well may have strengths elsewhere. Indeed, everyone does. Consider a blind person who develops the ability to move around in the darkness much more easily than a typical person, or focuses on music and does so very successfully. I'm not interested in the spending angle - I'm interested in the notion of 'fairness' here. At first it seems intuitively obvious - of course it's unfair that someone who uses a wheelchair doesn't have a ramp! But when you start thinking more closely about the situation, anyone who didn't get the job didn't get it for a reason. All those things in some sense are 'unfair'. Suddenly, when trying to decide on spending to alleviate 'unfairness' in society, you have a whole host of situations to consider.

 

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51 minutes ago, Anthony_270 said:

This is a different argument, though. It's no longer about fairness, it's about an investment that pays off. For example, the biggest users of ramps are probably older people who have difficulty walking extended periods or up stairs.

Well ... A person who uses a wheelchair often to get about very well may have strengths elsewhere. Indeed, everyone does. Consider a blind person who develops the ability to move around in the darkness much more easily than a typical person, or focuses on music and does so very successfully. I'm not interested in the spending angle - I'm interested in the notion of 'fairness' here. At first it seems intuitively obvious - of course it's unfair that someone who uses a wheelchair doesn't have a ramp! But when you start thinking more closely about the situation, anyone who didn't get the job didn't get it for a reason. All those things in some sense are 'unfair'. Suddenly, when trying to decide on spending to alleviate 'unfairness' in society, you have a whole host of situations to consider.

 

It's a fairness-based investment. My motive is two-fold. Fairness and investment. 

I'm focusing on fairness (or unfairness) on why someone didn't get a job, you're focusing on reasons why people don't get a job in general. I'm being restrictive, and you're being universal. 

In regards to strengths of handicapped people, I'm arguing from the stand point that these people often can't showcase their strengths because their disabilities don't allow them to get--literally and figuratively--in the door. 

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