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Judicial Review 12 Discussion - Official Polls

Discussion in 'Civ4 - Demo Game: Citizens' started by Black_Hole, Apr 6, 2006.

  1. Black_Hole

    Black_Hole Deity

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    ravensfire asked the question:
    Are Initiatives considered Official polls, and thus subject to verification by the Censor?

    The following laws are applicable:

    Code of Laws, Section 1.B.III.IIIB.4
    Constitution, C.2:
    Constitution, C.4:
     
  2. Curufinwe

    Curufinwe Socialist Elf

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    The initiative is fundamentally an expression of the will of the people, of democracy, and are fundamentally held to be the highest expression of the same. Furthermore, all power is vested in the people, thus initiative over rides other officials, so even if the Censor were to oppose the initiative, they would bow to the authority of the people.
     
  3. DaveShack

    DaveShack Inventor Retired Moderator

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    The original intent was to use "official" and "binding" as synonyms. I think that's the way we should continue to think of these terms.

    There was some unfortunate confusion which led to some people thinking "official" meant "opened by an official". This further led, in some peoples minds, to the ludicrous position that an official cannot propose an initiative which pertains to their own office. Drop the idea that places where the law says only "binding" are somehow not "official", or alternatively add the concept of binding = official, and both the reason for this JR and the bizarre concept of officials not being able to start an initiative will both be cleared up.

    Binding = official is something the Judiciary can decide, because it is a matter of interpreting the words according to common sense, the author's intent, and precedent of prior DG usage.
     
  4. ravensfire

    ravensfire Member of the Opposition

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    My apologies - work has significantly distracted me of late.

    Tbis JR was spawned by a discussion last term about polls, initiatives, referendums and the role of the Censor. I encourage citizens to review aspects of that discussion.

    Here
    And here

    We use the Censor to verify that the polls we use for decision making are fundamentally sound. If the poll fair? Is it open for a reasonable time? Does it include the various options it should? Without these basic safeguards, the potential for abuse and chaos is tremendous. Imagine multiple initiatives with one or two identical options, and only 1 day to run. The power given to Initiatives is great, but there needs to be some control, some check on that power, or we will see abuse of that power.

    The Censor serves as the one thing the SG has never had - an arbiter of polls that can make "official" decisions about those poll. A person that will create and post the standards that those polls are held too. A voice of the citizens, for the citizens. Part of that responsibility must be to apply those standards to both the referendums of elected officials and the initiatives of citizens.

    Core to our system is that citizens DO have a voice in governance. A decision that Initiatives are not official polls works to silence that voice.

    -- Ravensfire
     
  5. donsig

    donsig Low level intermediary

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    Question (posed to everyone): What is the difference between a referendum and an initiative?
     
  6. ravensfire

    ravensfire Member of the Opposition

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    Referendum - poll posted by an official not marked as Opinion. Poll must be by an official acting in support of their duties.

    Initiative - poll posted by a citizen, marked as an initiative. Cannot be by an official actin in support of their duties.

    -- Ravensfire
     
  7. Furiey

    Furiey No Longer Just Lurking

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    Good question and in this game I have no idea. The whole system of polls appears to me to be overly complicated. There are too many different types of poll by Citizens and Officials that I certainly don't understand and others do not seem to either. Surely there are polls by Citizens and polls by Officials. Either should state clearly in the first post the purpose of the poll and what it is about, is it to make a decision? to gauge an opinion? I do not feel the current nomenclature aids us in running the game.
     
  8. DaveShack

    DaveShack Inventor Retired Moderator

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    I disagree with Ravensfire.

    The difference between a referendum and initiative is not primarily who opens the poll, it is the scope of the poll.

    Referendum - A binding official poll opened by the official responsible for the area, which has a scope of a single decision.

    Initiative - A binding official poll opened by any citizen (including officials responsible for the area) which has a scope of more than a single decision in terms of time (initiatives do not expire unless they contain sunset language) or in terms of span of control (covering more than one office).

    I'm not sure why I didn't remember the covering more than one office part in the previous discussions on the subject, as it's very clear right now. Maybe holding an office which must use initiative has refocused me.

    The Secretary of State needs to organize war and peace decisions. Such decisions compel others to do their jobs (Military, Governors, etc.). We recognize that fact by explicitly requiring an initiative, but if we accepted the definition that an official cannot post it, the person(s) best suited to lead the discussion, and thus to frame the poll, would be prohibited from doing their jobs.
     
  9. Cyc

    Cyc Looking for the door...

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    :crazyeye: Furiey's right! Things got just a little too complicated this game. But I would like to suggest my attempt at a solution. It's a combination of both Ravenfire's and DaveShack's with an addition.

    Referendum –

    A binding official poll opened by the official responsible for the area, not marked as Opinion. This is a poll which has the scope of a single decision.

    Initiative –

    A poll posted by a citizen, marked as an initiative. Cannot be by an official acting in support of their duties, unless the scope of the initiative clearly spans the responsibilities of more than one Office.
    ____________________________________________________________

    This allows an Official the option of running his Office with single decision polls, but limits them from controlling the flow of the game too far in the future (sorry DS). It also allows an Official to post an Initiative as a citizen (they should have the right) if it is not just concerned with their Office responsibilities.
    :goodjob:
     
  10. DaveShack

    DaveShack Inventor Retired Moderator

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    Here's what led to initiative as a separate poll type.

    Before initiative, there were two kinds of polls, official and informational. We had a few people, who when elected as officials thought they were the only people who could open official polls relating to their position. One of the people who has posted in this thread had a major disagreement with me on an issue, and being the official for the area flatly refused to open a poll to resolve the disagreement. When I opened the poll, this person immediately posted in the poll that he called it informational, and refused to abide by its results, no matter what the people said.

    I decided I would do everything in my power to ensure no official ever ignores a poll unless it is clearly marked as informational / opinion from the beginning. Even then, if you open an informational poll and get a big turnout like 90% for one side, you'd better go ahead and follow it because if you don't then one of the watchdogs of the game (like me) will use another poll to make it official.

    Back to the topic of this JR, is there any remaining question whether initiatives are official polls? I'd like to free up the Judiciary for a ruling on the case.
     

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