All of the governmental bodies we have now we a few tweaks:
- OWL is an Ministry with an elected leader
- The Chair of the Assembly is regularly elected
I’ll think of more stuff as the day(s) progress.
If I tried giving any more of a substantial answer than the following I’d be getting into a T.O.R. PolTheory session so;
Elected (albeit more responsible) Delegate; Direct Government where Legislature and Executive are codified as one entity due to having ~35 active voters; Sortition-delegated “Bureaucracy”.
The Chair is elected.
I want a government that is responsive to public concerns and effective in executing our collective goals.
I want a more streamlined executive, to me that requires a unitary executive with broad powers, constrained primarily by judicial checks or if public opinion should choose to remove or recall the executive.
I want a more active and intentional legislature. I’m OK with separating the legislature from the voting citizenry writ large - whether by elections or something like what Glen has already proposed.
Dividing the “on site” and “off site” is outdated and silly. The same unitary executive should have authority over both and appoint Ministers to provide for the governance of all of TSP.
I want a more limited judiciary. The fact that every time something comes up in TSP it has to go to the Court is a problem for motivation and engagement. It’s not the Court’s fault, it’s a TSP culture and incentives problem.
The Delegate is fine as-is. It’s pretty much the main part of our government that works. Honestly, I could be persuaded to make the position CRS appointed, because it’s not like the Delegate does much besides accumulate endorsements and not coup.
That’s vague: I meant regular elections, sorry.
How would this look in practice?
think Glen’s post here starts to reference possible options. In my mind, a rewrite of the Judiciary Act to create a higher burden for accepting a case (both an actual standing requirement and a standard that LQs not be political questions which can be resolved by other non-judicial actors) would begin to accomplish these goals. Obviously, the Court then has to follow through on its newly defined scope, but I imagine if the law explains the scope of the Court’s power for Legal Questions the Court will apply those standards judiciously.
In my ideal government…
The executive is lead by a sole elected official elected by instant runoff vote who serves as both head of government and head of state. This official has broad flexibility to define the executive and appoint the Cabinet the way they see fit.
The legislature is elected. but a participatory body still exists with the ability to submit legislation to this legislature that it must then consider. The elected legislature confirms Cabinet appointments. The legislature and its lower body both elect chairs/speakers/whatever every term.
The Court is still around in very much the same form as today, except that Justice terms are not indefinite and are instead of a certain long length (say six months). Additionally, judicial review is only allowed when parties have standing (which may actually be true today, though I’m not sure). I honestly think a lot of the concerns surrounding the overuse of the Court are a bit overblown, although I think there were some valid concerns around obstructionism around the start of the GC.
The CRS/Coral Guard structure is not changed, though I might add a Vice Delegate role to the CRS.
The SPSF is the same except that there is no General Corps and the head of government is the ultimate commander-in-chief.
The Delegacy is unchanged except that the Delegate’s roles in governmental affairs are removed and the Delegate is no longer head of state.
There is no Local Council. The whole third-rails status of the gameside from the “forumside” government is gone. The gameside is under the purview of the executive (with the exception of CRS roles).
What would happen at the end of each term?
A new justice (or the same one) would be nominated.
My ideal government:
Abolish the Local Council; the Local Council strayed far away from its originally intended purpose (home rule) and into a nearly exclusive moderation-only body. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but if that is the role they want to take, then the protections the RMB has (being the only authority on RMB-related laws and the RMB electing their own (LC) moderators, for instance) need to be removed, because they were only granted so that the LC could be the home rule body they were set up to be.
Retain the separation of the head of government and the head of state, but with a few minor alterations. The separation of the head of government from the in-game delegate seat is a crucial safeguard that protects the region. This must remain in place. Though, I do agree that the Delegate could have a larger role within the region. Perhaps they could be the one that appoints the “new” moderation body of the RMB (assuming number 1 was carried out). Perhaps they could also have the authority to “open” sessions of the Assembly (assuming we create a sessions-based Assembly).
Create a bicameral legislature; I am intrigued by the activity-based division, though I fear that a lower house based on membership of non-active members could actually be dead in terms of activity. I think that a bicameral legislature will be distinct and help further evolve the culture of the region.
PM-appointed cabinet; It’s clear that our elections can be pretty boring. It seems that most members of the region are coming around to the idea that the minister’s role is becoming too highly specialized and technical. Having the PM appoint the ministers of the ministries will allow the best candidate to fill the position. The alternative to this is to ensure that the responsibilities of the ministers are not so technical in the first place. If the latter idea is followed, then this PM appointment option is moot, in my opinion.
Codify the CRS and Coral Guard responsibilities since the Coral Guard was created. Since Coral Guard members hold high endorsements, I would rather them be confirmed by the Assembly than the CRS. However, if the CRS still calls the “shots” when it comes to regional security, then the CRS remains confirmed too.
Leave everything else not mentioned the same as it currently exists.
Do you have any specific ideas for a bicameral legislature?
If implemented, would such an idea have actual political implications, or would it mainly give our head of state more of the ceremonial role that we traditionally associate with a head of state.
Truth be told, I don’t think I would terribly mind a bit more IC ceremonial elements to our Assembly/legislature.
Because if there’s one thing this region needs more of, it’s more procedure and bureaucracy.
I do not think that we should separate the head of government and the head of state. I do think we should keep a separated Delegacy, but the Delegate doesn’t need to be head of state and even if they are we do not need to grant them a niche role in our government to rationalize having the post as that of head of state.
Not to threadjack, but I briefly discussed an elected upper house using a formula for the number of members comparable to the formula the APC used several years ago. The upper houses only issue is that it would have the same function as the lower house, unless we were to give it exclusive appointment authority.
Again, not to threadjack, it all comes down to the in game breakdown of the RO spots. It’s difficult to say that the Delegate is NOT the head of government (let alone head of state) when they have all the RO powers. Separating them is logical if you want to preserve the idea that the forums is an extension of the RMB so we can better organize our government.
I actually don’t see how it’s logical at all.
I’ll expand on this just a little while I still have some time.
A directly elected Delegate in which the voters are “the general population” meaning everyone connected to TSP as a region. Whether it’s through the current system or introducing registered voters or citizenry – ultimately isn’t a concern as it’s merely a method.
The Delegate represents the region (giving it power over whatever OWL is transformed into and what is under MoFA jurisdiction at the moment) “internationally” and acts as a binding agent domestically (probably giving it MoE’s portfolio). The Delegate would likely have its’ own subsidiary bodies for these.
Direct Governance is harder to elaborate. The legislator roster significantly oscillates between 40-120; though the active voters can be esteemed to be at a steady 30-50 members.
We already have a soft branch division; with proposed changes to Ministries and Committee Assemblies the division will become arbitrary. I am not sure how the combination would operate in practice but given that we have an open-door policy towards the Assembly, I don’t see why an essentially direct democracy would need this division without the manpower to cover it.
Finally the Bureaucracy is easiest to explain. It includes “meta” bodies such as LegComm, ElComm, CG, CRS and others I’m missing.
Why add sortition to it? Alright, can another 2022-gen legislator tell me what officially listed requirement CRS membership has which CG doesn’t, without checking? Not the tasks they perform, the actual requirement difference.
What benefits do I see coming from these – A more united overall perspective of everyone involved as similar experiences are shared (?) – Leading to less friction and tension among the users.
I have to be honest here. I’ve read this multiple times and I still can’t fully understand how your ideal government looks like.
Delegate: Not much would change here. The Delegate would still be elected via a two-round system for a term of six months. I wouldn’t give them any significant government responsibilities, though I like the idea of giving them ceremonial duties, such as opening sessions in the Assembly.
Cabinet: The Cabinet is led by a Prime Minister elected for a term of 3 months, who would then appoint a ministers subject to confirmation by the Assembly. As the sole elected official, the Prime Minister would set and be responsible for the enactment of executive policy.
Ministers: Each minister must be confirmed by the Assembly. Confirmation should not take more than 1 week, including questions and voting. A minister’s portfolio should generally be policy-oriented rather than task-oriented; for example, there cannot be a WA Ministry that only runs polls. The reason for this is that ministers are the Prime Minister’s principal policy advisors and enactors, so their job should also be to deal with policy rather than just repetitive tasks.
Offices and Advisors: I would not mention either of these in the Charter or the law. These should be handled via the Prime Minister’s power to issue executive orders and run the executive branch.
Assembly: I like the overall spirit of Glen’s idea of sessions, but I’m not sure if the actual concept of calling the Assembly into session for specific business is too burdensome. Perhaps the Delegate calls the Assembly at the start of their term, and anyone who fails their monthly activity check cannot reapply until the start of the next session? Or perhaps anyone who fails multiple activity checks needs approval from the Assembly to be readmitted? I’m open to ideas here.
Chair of the Assembly: I am not necessarily a fan of open-ended terms for the Chair but I agree that terms for them should be lengthier than usual, so I would either tie term length to Assembly sessions or set it to a length similar to that of the Delegate.
Court: I would give the Court greater authority to reject cases. Currently it can only reject cases on grounds of frivolity via unanimous vote. I would want to explore options to let the Court consider not only justiciability, but also the relevance of the case to the region’s legal landscape. I’m also interested in discussions about standing, but I’m not so sure yet that there is much benefit in limiting who can submit cases; if a matter is relevant then it probably deserves to be heard, no matter who submits it.
Do you have any particular thoughts on the citizenship debate, or moving to a bicameral legislature?