Our Living World Constitution:
Charter for Economic Rights—Articles 20-25

Posted on 12 June 2019

by Steven Fruitsmaak CC BY-SA 3.0 unported

Our Governance
By The People & For The People

Article 20.

Democracy can only function when the citizens of a country have reason to trust their political institutions. Are those within these institutions seeking to represent their people and the well-being of their nation? When politicians are drawn from the corporate class and return to that class in order to further corporate agendas as lobbyists and the like, they are serving corporations and not the citizens who voted them into positions of responsibility. Just as we seek separation of church and state in order to protect religious freedoms, we must separate business and state to protect the powers of our citizenry.

Article 21.

It cannot be said we live in a democratic society when the political class is drawn largely from our wealthiest members, or those who are funded by our wealthiest members. Taking up the responsibilities of public office should be within the grasp of any adult citizen of sound mind. Therefore, all public elections will be socialised.

1) The government will provide equal access to media for campaigning.

2) The government will provide travel vouchers for all registered candidates to meet with their electorate.

3) Donations for campaigning in cash or in kind will be abolished and made illegal.

4) Limits will be placed on the use of personal funds.

Article 22.

Positions of power attract people whose sole interest are positions of power. Concentrating too much power into any one set of hands has a tendency to warp human personalities. Power must be diffused and have firm limitations placed upon it. Further to providing equal access to public office:

1) Above the line voting will be abolished.

2) Parties will be abolished. Those people who are put into power by their electorate are expected to serve their electorate and not the whims of a power making organisation.

3) The two houses of parliament henceforward will be divided into a senate and a house by sortition.

4) Truth in advertising laws will apply to political campaigning and government information campaigns.

5) Paid advertising campaigns, supporting or countering government policy or political candidates, gives the wealthy undue influence in public affairs. Six months prior to any election a moratorium will be placed on all paid political advertising. Only the socialised advertising available to all candidates will go out on the media.

6) No citizen, regardless of their social position, will be above the law. This includes people holding political positions in service to their country. An independent Federal anti-corruption and misconduct body will be established with real powers to prosecute wrong-doers.

Article 23.

A people can only vote intelligently concerning the welfare of their country when they are well informed. A thriving, objective, and truthful free press is critical to this endeavour. To ensure Australia has access to such resources the government will more than adequately fund our public media such as the ABC, SBS, and public access. The government will also fund all public universities and TAFEs to employ journalists, most especially investigative journalists, to inform citizens of Federal, State, and local news. This news will be broadly disseminated across government funded media and in the public domain.

Article 24.

A nation can only function when the citizens of a country have reason to trust their judicial institutions. When largely only those who are wealthiest and most privileged have access to positions of authority such as solicitor, barrister, and judge, then we do not have a fair legal system that is capable of taking into proper account the circumstances of those who are relying upon the decisions of the court. Equal employment opportunity quotas will be put into place for all roles of legal representation and judgement, including ensuring an aboriginal presence is available federally and in all states.

Article 25.

The citizens of a country are only equal when the laws of that country are equally applied to all regardless of differences. A divide created whereby the wealthy receive one type of contracts, legal protections, and justice, and the poor another, cannot be countenanced. The judicial system will be socialised and will provide free and equal access to more than adequate legal advice and representation for all.


Explication

Article 20.

No matter what is said in this constitution certain of the rich and powerful will seek to find ways to circumnavigate around the letter of the law in order to secure unfair advantage. This is why it is important to make statements of intent.

Separation of powers is critical to maintaining fair and balanced governance. We separate religion and state to protect religious diversity, but also to ensure our governance is transparent and answerable to the people, not to a multi-national organisation with its own state structure. Business is in exactly the same position when it comes to our citizens and their duly elected administration.

Article 22.

A House by Sortition is one where members of the public are randomly selected to sit in government and vote on the issues of the day. It is run much like jury duty, including similar selection criteria. The burden is no different than those countries who expect their citizens to spend a few years either in the military or in public service.

The random nature of this house ensures a truly representative government. You will note it is still one of two houses, since people still want to vote in some individuals with special knowledge to help guide and protect our country. However, some find it unnerving to have “just anyone” voting on Federal policy.

We must remember that “just anyone” was allowed to vote in the general elections. If we are nervous what “just anyone” might do, then we must ensure that all people have access to a proper education, that all people are secure enough that they aren’t inclined to a radical agenda, that all people have access to good quality information about the science and issues of the day and that we all have the time to inform ourselves.

In a healthy society we should be able to trust one another more.

Article 23.

Newspapers since their inception provided news as a means to direct people’s attention to advertising. Since their inception newspapers have had the power to influence public opinion. However, early on it was discovered that they also provided important social services: keeping the public informed and the activities of the government transparent.

We need an objective and free press, abiding by the rules of ethical journalism. This is critical to a successful democracy. Therefore, we need socialised news media that is neither beholding to monied nor political interests. This press must be available at Federal, State, and Local levels. It must also be available to a diversity of peoples, representing the diversity of their needs and interests.

Universities and TAFEs work better when they are embedded in the communities which they are ultimately serving. Research and the communication of that research is core to these institutions. These are good places to protect the existence of journalism and ensure the highest standards in providing the public with relevant information.

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