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splitting the constitution - how can that work?

Discussion in 'Civ3 Demo Game: Citizens' started by disorganizer, Jun 3, 2002.

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  1. disorganizer

    disorganizer Chieftain

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    As we saw from many posts, it will be best for our nation to split the rules to different books. This thread should be used to discuss how this can be organized and what other things we have to think about when implementing this.

    The pro/con discussion of splitting the constitution should be spawned to other threads (see below) and kept to minimum in here to avoid clutter.
     
  2. disorganizer

    disorganizer Chieftain

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  3. disorganizer

    disorganizer Chieftain

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    difference of the books:
    book of principles: hard to change (citizen+cabinet poll)
    book of law: easy to change (citizen poll)
    book of regulations: easy to change (citizen poll)
    maybe the outcome will be that the last two will be one.

    ranking of books:
    principles->laws->regulations
    this means for example a rule in the "book of laws" has to comply to the rules in the "book of principles".
     
  4. disorganizer

    disorganizer Chieftain

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    now just to begin:
    (noone talked in here, so there really seems to be much interest in this matter!)

    * a rule in a higher ranked book must not be violated by a lower ranked book. for example a law must not override a principle
    * changes to the principles must be approved by cabinet-poll and majority-citizen poll
    * changes to the laws must be approved by a majority citizen poll
    * changes to the regulations must be approved by a normal citizen poll

    (see book of regulations for details about the poll-types)
     
  5. Cyc

    Cyc Looking for the door...

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    I'm not much of a constitution writer, yet. How about if you define the terms rule, priciple, law and regulation. What each term means and why it is in a separate book. Not in an overall blanket statement, but a bonafide definition of each term. One that could be expanded on or modifiedin a way to make it work better with the others. This would be a good place to start and hopefully we will get some citizen response.
     
  6. Shaitan

    Shaitan der Besucher

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    My take on it is more like the US Constitution and laws (sorry I keep referring to this but it's the one I know best).

    Preamble - non-binding declaratory statement. Introduction to the Constitution. Sets the tone of the document.

    Constitution - comprised of principles. These are broad stroke and sometimes ambiguous statements. They are designed to be interpreted. Very difficult to change.

    Amendments - principles added after the completed Constitution is in use.

    Laws - rules of the game. These are (relatively) easy to change but are restricted. Laws may not be created that contradict the principles of the Constitution. A change in the Constitution can invalidate huge sections of the law code.

    Standards - techniques and procedures. These are the way things are or should be done. They may not contradict the Laws or the Constitution but carry no penalty for violation.
     
  7. Cyc

    Cyc Looking for the door...

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    Shaitan:
    Standards - techniques and procedures. These are the way things are or should be done. They may not contradict the Laws or the Constitution but carry no penalty for violation.

    So far I like it, (after more input from citizenry), but the standards part troubles me. If it must not contradict the Laws or Constitution, then there should be a penalty, such as invalidation. If there is no penalty, why adhere to the laws? I could purposely counter the laws and laugh in the face of the constitution while doing one of the procedures outlined. I don't get it. Shouldn't we just save the ink?
     
  8. donsig

    donsig Low level intermediary

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    No 'penalty' Cyc, but I assume that standards that violate a law would be declared invalid just as a law that violates the constitution is declared void. The question becomes, who judges the legality of regulations and the constitutionality of laws...
     
  9. disorganizer

    disorganizer Chieftain

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    they will not be allowed to be added or will be removed if noticed later. as in normal laws and regulations. every government has a constitution. the laws are not to conflict with it, otherwise they are declined. all government offices make their rules (as well as courthouses), and they also have to comply to law and constitution, otherwise declined
     
  10. Cyc

    Cyc Looking for the door...

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    Maybe I'm misunderstanding Shaitan's paragraph (the quote in my post) or both Donsig's and Disorganizer's. I'll clarify my statement.
    I'm not talking about if the procedures outlined in the book of Standards violate or are in conflict of a law or other part of this Constitution package, I'm talking about a proposal or poll or whatever, being drawn up by a citizen that is outlined in the procedure, yet not adhering to those standards being declared invalid because of that fact. The way Shaitan's paragraph reads to me, the procedures are outlined in the Book of Standards, but NO penalty is applied for not adhering to them. And the only penalty I'm talking about is the action would not be validated if it didn't.
     
  11. Shaitan

    Shaitan der Besucher

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    Essentially correct, Cyc. There is no criminal penalty for violating a standard. In the draft that I will post on Monday the maximum penalty for violating standards is a warning. Procedures carried out that violate the standards would not be valid. Continuous violations of a standard could indicate that it's not workable or that it needs to be given the authority of law. If a single citizen continuously violates standards, the common cause (peers) should take care of the problem.
     
  12. donsig

    donsig Low level intermediary

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    This seems tied directly to the poll standards question. The validation Cyc is talking about seems to me to be the same thing as making a poll binding. I see the idea here to be to safeguard against someone pushing through an unpopular measure. The theory is that for measures to be valid or polls to be binding they must live up to these well thought out standards. If they don't follow the standards they can be safely ignored or over-ridden (in theory).

    The trouble I see is that popular policies would also be invalid or non-binding if they do not meet the standards! Because of this I am very wary of adding more rules.
     
  13. disorganizer

    disorganizer Chieftain

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    what about just stating that if the poll is not using the specifications of the book of regulations, it is invalid. and this will of course be in the book of law, so it can not be changed by a simple poll.
     
  14. donsig

    donsig Low level intermediary

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    If a poll is not valid does than mean we cannot follow the results of the poll? I see many problems with invalidating polls. If the government implements a policy measure that happened to be approved by a poll that was not valid then impeachment charges could possibly be brought against the government officials in question. A poll that does not live up to our standards may well still accurately depict popular opinion.
    I think the best we can do with polling procedures is to allow government officials to justify their actions if they have a valid poll that backs the actions.
     
  15. disorganizer

    disorganizer Chieftain

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    if a valid poll from some time before (even if a year old) is there covering the same question, the old poll MUST be followed if the new one is invalid.
    if the poll is invalid, the info can but need not be used.
    if a poll-result MUST be there for continuing the game, then we will have to wait for a valid poll, even if this may mean canceling a turn-chat already scheduled.
    it makes no sense making rules we dont need to follow.
     
  16. Cyc

    Cyc Looking for the door...

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    The validation of an action, poll, proposal, whatever would only be implemented in official use. If a poll, let's say, doesn't fall within the parameters of validation, it can't be made into law, it can't be used for impeachment procedings, any action taken in a chat according to it's results can be reversed. All validation means is that the item will stand in any official judgement or action taken by the government, if the item's validity is questioned. If someone says during a chat to use a poll's results in an action taken by you, and you look the poll over and say "This isn't a valid poll", you won't be required to use it (if your analysis is correct). That doesn't mean you can't use the results of the poll, it just means that if you were correct, and the poll isn't valid, then that poll can't be used in your defense of the action (if required). Validation is not a huge issue here. It simply states whether an item or action will stand the test of government scrutiny.
     
  17. Shaitan

    Shaitan der Besucher

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    What they said. Disorganizer and Cyc nailed my thoughts to a T.
     
  18. donsig

    donsig Low level intermediary

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    I do not agree with disorganizer's idea of halting the game to wait for a valid poll. that leaves open the strategy of calling for polls during turn chat and pretty much throws spot votes during chat out the window.
    I'm not sure I agree with Cyc here either. If validation of a poll is not important then why do we need standards? I think validation is important. I see the logic presented by both dis and Cyc but I'm not sure my original doubts have been answered. These doubts are on a fundamental level and I'll try again to give an example of what worries me.
    Say the designated player (DP) comes across a point in the game where he or she feels citizen input is needed. The turn instructions don't cover the situation. Someone at the chat brings up a poll that upon examination is not valid. The DP follows the results of the poll anyway. I understand the DP can't use the poll in his or her defense but could the poll be used against the DP? My fear is that the Dp will end up getting crucified because an invalid poll happens to exist.
    I guess I'm trying to say that non-validated polls can't be used as defense and also can't be used as evidence against someone.
     
  19. Cyc

    Cyc Looking for the door...

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    I think! I mean to say here, exactly Donsig. Polls that do not fall withing the parameters of validation are simply informative. They may not be used in an official manner.
    In your last example, if the DP (Designated Player) used an invalid poll, but that poll showed an inkling of the will of the citizens, why would that poll be used against them? (Even if that were possible.) If invalid Polls cannot be used in government procedings for one's defense, they would not be allow for one's prosecution. Sorry if it seems like I'm repeating myself here.
    I thoroughly agree the validation is important, Donsig. I'm the one who brought it up. It's the mortar that will hold most of the arguements in this Constitutional debate together. I never said it wasn't an important issue. If it was taken that way, I'm sorry. What I meant to say was that the concept of validation was an easy one to achieve. The definition of validation (usable in any form for government actions, laws, whatever) is easy to communicate. The specifics of validation, by means of regs and laws, which will come later through discussion, won't be as easy.

    One last thing is I hope you are keeping validation of polls completely separate from the definition of that of binding polls. While binding polls must be valid, valid polls may not be binding. Binding polls may be passed into law by the cabinet. Keep in mind that Shaitan is passing or has passed a constitutional amendment that states that any poll created by a leader is binding (if valid). Binding and validation are two totally different concepts.

    P.S. I think we're holding the same conversation in two different threads. Let's move this conversation about polls to Eklektikos' thread for the Polling Commision, and leave this thread for the Constitutional matters (although they may intertwine).
     
  20. donsig

    donsig Low level intermediary

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    How can an amendment be passed to make a valid poll binding when we haven't decided what *valid* means? *Binding* is a whole another question and I think it was my asking what *binding* meant that got us to this point of drawing a distinction between valid and binding. I do see how there can be a difference in the two concepts but have we gotten any closer to being able to use polls to decipher what it is that citizens want done?

    A concrete example is looming. We are entering the industrial age and the demands on our workers a re increasing. Who has the authority to decide what our workers should be working on? Our domestic leader has now issued instructions for our workers. A governor has requested the use of at least one worker. To the best of my knowledge the constitution is silent on who controls workers. It could be argued that they fall under the jurisdiction of the domestic department or the designated player. The turn chat is four hours away and there is no mechanism for answering this question.
     
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