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Judicial Discussion JR1 CoL Ratification Poll legality

Discussion in 'Civ4 - Demo Game: Citizens' started by DaveShack, Jan 8, 2006.

  1. DaveShack

    DaveShack Inventor Retired Moderator

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    This thread is for citizen discussion relating to the question posed by Blkbird regarding the poll which allegedly ratified the Triumvirate 6.2 government as the CoL.

    Civ4DG1JR1

    Question: Was the poll for ratification of Triumvirate 6.2 performed legally according to the rules in force at the time the poll was conducted?

    The relevant law is the Constitution, Article C. Members of the court and citizens may point out additional relevant laws as needed.

    Article C - Decision Making
    1. Power of the People
      1. All decision making power within the Democracy Game is derived from the collective rights of all the citizens.
      2. The Power of the People can be delegated to officials of the game in one or more of the following ways, or in other ways which may subsequently be discovered.
        • By Mandate as evidenced in a citizen's selection to hold office via the elective process.
        • By Constituency as evidenced by citizen comments in favor of a decision, in a public discussion.
        • By Opinion Poll in the form of the results of a non-binding poll
        • By Referendum in the form of an official, binding poll which has force over the current decision only.
        • By Initiative in the form of a binding poll initiated by the citizenry, which has force over a current decision and future decisions of the same type
        • By Recall of an official and selection of a replacement via election or appointment
      3. In the event that two or more such delegations of the Power of the People are in conflict, the following hierarchy shall determine which decision has precedence.
        • An initiative has force of law and supercedes any other decision type (including an earlier initiative on the same subject) except another later initiative which repeals it.
        • Binding polls of any type have precedence over any other decision type.
        • Non-binding polls have precedence over non-polling decision types.
        • Citizen input has precedence over mandate.
        • If two or more polls or discussions occur on a matter, the last one to complete shall prevail.
        • Lower forms of law may modify parts of this hierarchy, except for the provision regarding initiative which may not be modified.
      4. A lower form of law may specify procedures and restrictions on implementing decision types, except
        • Initiative must always be allowed
        • No decision shall require more support than an amendment to the Constitution.
    This is not a discussion on whether the Triumvirate 6.2 or Flexible government is better, or on which one we should choose now. The question before the court is on whether that specific poll was conducted according to the law in effect at that time.

    In order for our system of government to work correctly, the court must operate with as much impartiality as possible. Given the polarized nature of the current Tri vs Flex poll, it is certain that some or all of the justices may have a personal preference. We need to approach this case by examining it according to the law and not our preferences.

    The citizens should understand that while we seek input to help us interpret events based on the law, the court does not operate on the popularity of our decisions.

    This discussion must stay on topic. There are plenty of places to talk about the related issues.
     
  2. DaveShack

    DaveShack Inventor Retired Moderator

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    For anyone who saw what was posted here, I realized even an analogy might break my own request for staying on topic. I've copied it to another file to think about it a bit more.
     
  3. donsig

    donsig Low level intermediary

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    I think this article should be kept in mind as evidence is presented:

    Article A - Forms of Law
    1. Governing rules shall consist of this Constitution, such amendments that shall follow and lower forms of law that may be implemented.

    2. No rule shall be valid that contradicts the Constitution.
    a, Rules which are more specific on a given point may clarify more general points without being contradictory.

    3. These rules may not contradict the rules and regulations of the Civfanatics Forums. Moderators may veto any such rules.
     
  4. Black_Hole

    Black_Hole Chieftain

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    Here is another relevant article imo:

    Article A - Forms of Law
    1. Governing rules shall consist of this Constitution, such amendments that shall follow and lower forms of law that may be implemented.
    2. No rule shall be valid that contradicts the Constitution.
      • Rules which are more specific on a given point may clarify more general points without being contradictory.
    3. These rules may not contradict the rules and regulations of the Civfanatics Forums. Moderators may veto any such rules.

    There are no requirements for CoL ratifacation, so we could assume that the CoL's own amendment proccess would have to be followed for ratifacation of the CoL

    edit: Donsig beat me
     
  5. Black_Hole

    Black_Hole Chieftain

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    Look at the order of precedence of decision making types:

    I think it is obvious the CoL amendment poll would be an intiative and the other polls non binding polls, so the CoL amendment poll has precedence...
    There is no clause stating that if an intiative if based on a non binding poll, and the non binding poll is invalid, then the intiaive is invalid
     
  6. DaveShack

    DaveShack Inventor Retired Moderator

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    The sequence of events was:

    1. Poll asking "which government to focus on" between Tri (3.0), Flex (unspecified), and Traditional (from DG7), which was tied by the first count.
    2. Some upgrades to Tri, bringing version to 5.0 or 5.1. A hacked version of Tri placed in the Flex thread to show how easy it is to remove the key feature of Tri and morph it into flex.
    3. Poll asking "which government to focus on" between Tri (5.1) and Flex (hacked Tri or modified DG7, TBD), which was in favor of Tri on the first count.
    4. Tri was upgraded from 5.1 to 6.2, with input from many citizens. Part of this upgrade happened during the poll in #3.
    5. Poll asking "Ratify Tri 6.2 as the CoL", with overwhelming majority which was not affected by the DL's.
    6. Revelation of the fraud affecting votes 1 and 3.
    Followup questions:
    • During step 4, were the proponents of Flex given an opportunity to influence Tri? Did that influence result in a convergence of the two ideas?
    • Hypothetically, if Flex had won would Tri supporters have influenced the Flex drafting process? Would it be likely that their input would result in a convergence between the two ideas?
    • Does anyone else wish to offer their opinion of a categorization of points 1 thru 5 in terms of the definitions of decision types?
     
  7. ravensfire

    ravensfire Member of the Opposition

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    I would further note that there was fraud in the poll from Step 3. The results of that poll were 22-16 in favor of the Triumverate. After the DL's were removed, the actual results of that poll was 12-16 in favor of the Flexible ruleset.

    -- Ravensfire, Public Defender
     
  8. DaveShack

    DaveShack Inventor Retired Moderator

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    That's noted in the timeline by including "first count" in the description, and step 6.
     
  9. Sigma

    Sigma Censor

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    DaveShack:

    My opinion is that Points 1 and 3 were Opinion Polls, and Point 5 was an Initiative.
     
  10. Blkbird

    Blkbird Chieftain

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    I disagree to consider the initial ratification of a CoL as some kind of "amendment" in this or any other context.

    Firstly, by definition, an "amendment" cannot occur before the subject to amend exists. In this case, the CoL is the subject to amend, which does not legally exist until the point of its ratification.

    Secondly, the amendment process is not legally binding until *after* the ratification, so the ratification is in no way bound by the amendment process specified in the very CoL to be ratified.
     
  11. Blkbird

    Blkbird Chieftain

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    I second this opinion.
     
  12. DaveShack

    DaveShack Inventor Retired Moderator

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    I missed this and then Blkbird quoted it and posted an opinion on it.

    Unofficially speaking, there is a precedent that ratification does not generally need to meet the same standard as an amendment to the law being ratified.
    • The constitution specifically stated that a majority was sufficient for its ratification and that 60% would be required for an amendment.
    • In the Civ3 DGs we commonly ratified constitutions using a different requirement than amendments would require. In every case that I can remember, ratification required a majority.
    Still speaking unofficially, it is clear that if the law being ratified, or the ratification itself, specifies criteria then they need to be met. If a higher level of law requires lower levels of law to be ratified by a specific criteria then it would need to be met.

    An official response can be expected as part of the ruling for this case.
     
  13. donsig

    donsig Low level intermediary

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    The constitution as written is a bit confusing regarding the decision making process. The difference between referendums, initiatives and opinion polls is not clear to me. I'm sure the intent was for the Code of Laws to define and clarify these differences but in determining whether or not we have a code of laws we can only base our decision on the constitution. This is a case where the intent behind the constitution is relevent. Since I was not part of that debate I encourage citizens ot present evidence from the original constitutional debates regarding the assumptions I have made below:

    A referendum is official because it is posted by an elected official acting under the authority vested in the office he or she was elected to.

    Initiatives and opinion polls are posted by citizens who hold no office or by an office holder delving into areas beyond the authority of their elected office. An example of the latter would be a poll posted by me (Judge Advocate) about whether we whould go to war against a specific country. Since the subject has nothing to do with the Judiciary I'd be posting an opinion poll or initiative (as a citizen) rather than a referendum as Judge Advocate.

    The difference between an initiative and an opinion poll is that the former is binding while the latter is not. This difference is based upon the form of the poll, presumably the poll itself specifies whether it is a binding initiative or a non-binding opinion poll.
     
  14. Black_Hole

    Black_Hole Chieftain

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    so what does the CoL require for ratification? 60%, 50%, or something else? In all past DGs the CoL has been ratified by its own conditions.

    All the constitution says is that there can be a CoL, by your logic, it doesn't even need to be ratified! There has to be some type of requirements for ratification, and the amendment requirements are what it should be. Technically it could be said we are amending a blank CoL to one full of content.
     
  15. Blkbird

    Blkbird Chieftain

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    I cautiously agree with your interpretation of "official" - for now, until someone present arguments against it.

    In my opinion, a poll can only be binding if:

    1. it specifies so itself AND
    2. the subject is specific and the wording is precise AND
    3. the subject of the poll has legal significance.

    If I post a poll asking, "Do we like apple or orange?" it cannot be binding even if the poll says so because it has no legal significance.

    In the matter at hand, the questions of the two "government style" polls were:

    1. Which government style should get our focus? (Flexible / Traditional / Triumvirate / Abstain)
    2. What government style should we focus on? (Triumvirate / Flexible / Abstain)

    Besides the fact that they both didn't specify being binding, they're both not specific and precise enough - "focus" is a pretty vage term. The legal significance of the two polls are questionable as well because "focusing" on a ruleset doesn't mean anything in the context of the Constitution.
     
  16. Blkbird

    Blkbird Chieftain

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    Yes it does. Until ratification, there is no CoL.

    Yes, the same requirement as for other polls, because nothing else is specified in the Constitution.

    Even if we see it that way, the ratificantion only needs to follow the amendment process defined in the blank CoL - which is none. Until the rafitication is completed, the (new) amendment process cannot not binding.
     
  17. DaveShack

    DaveShack Inventor Retired Moderator

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    As a citizen responsible for posting some of the polls in question, here is the 1st post text from the first Tri vs Flex (vs Traditional) poll.
    ========================
    Government Style (where to focus the rules work)
    We have very little time left before our preferred start date of Jan 1st (or shortly thereafter). It is now time to focus our efforts on finishing the rules for the government type preferred by the most people.

    The choices, with links to discussion threads, are:

    Flexible Government
    Triumvirate 4.0
    Traditional Government

    This poll will be open for 3 days and its results will be used to tell the rule makers which one to push to completion. You are not voting to ratify a ruleset in its current form! The government style getting the most votes can be modified before its Code of Laws is submitted for ratification. I strongly suggest we start working on the one which gets a lead after a day or so.
    ===========================

    The intent of this poll was to instruct the rule makers what to work on. It was posted by an official responsible for the area covered by the poll.
     
  18. Swissempire

    Swissempire Poet Jester

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    We must stay with the Tri. We are regressing to the October, novemeber point, we are being driven back 2 months by a scandal, and we must not allow this to happen!
     
  19. Black_Hole

    Black_Hole Chieftain

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    This discussion is about the legality of the the current Code of Laws, not which course of action we should take
    However, it would not take 2 months, more like 10 days
     
  20. Blkbird

    Blkbird Chieftain

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    Although I agree with you, I have to point out that this doesn't matter here in this very decision. This is a purely judiciary matter, and justice knows no price.
     

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