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(Category) The Reality Sculptors "Faq-O-Matic"
Subcategories:
(Category) Mailing Lists
(Category) "Laws We'd Like To See"

Answers in this category:
(Answer) What is this FAQ-O-Matic thing?
(Answer) New Item
(Answer) New Item

cat-new-ans
New Answer in "The Reality Sculptors "Faq-O-Matic""
2005-Jul-22 8:52pm
(Category) (Category) The Reality Sculptors "Faq-O-Matic" :
Mailing Lists
Discussions groups of the Reality Sculptors Project, and other lists on a variety of topics.
1999-Jun-01 12:09am salsbury
Subcategories:
(Category) "Official" Reality Sculptors lists
(Category) "Unofficial" / Non-Sculptors-related lists

Answers in this category:
(Answer) How do I join a Reality Sculptors mailing list?
(Answer) Are there archives of the mailing lists available?
(Answer) New Item

cat-new-ans
New Answer in "Mailing Lists"
2002-Sep-22 9:44am
(Category) (Category) The Reality Sculptors "Faq-O-Matic" : (Category) Mailing Lists :
"Official" Reality Sculptors lists
Lists specifically targeted to certain areas of problem solving in the Reality Sculptors Project.
1999-Jun-01 12:23am salsbury
Subcategories:
(Category) Fuel-Cells mailing list
(Category) Domesteading mailing list
(Category) Airships mailing list
(Category) Autopilot mailing list
(Category) Clean-Water mailing list
(Category) Floating-Cities mailing list
(Category) Uranium-Hot-Rock mailing list

Answers in this category:
(Answer) UpSpin mailing list

cat-new-ans
New Answer in ""Official" Reality Sculptors lists"
1999-Jun-15 11:10pm
(Category) (Category) The Reality Sculptors "Faq-O-Matic" : (Category) Mailing Lists : (Category) "Official" Reality Sculptors lists :
Fuel-Cells mailing list
The Fuel-Cells mailing list is for the discussion of hydrogen fuel-cell technology, news reports of recent advances, and general info on alternative, independent power systems for off-the-grid, home power, and automotive applications.
1999-Jun-01 12:42am salsbury
Subcategories:

Answers in this category:
(Answer) New Item
(Answer) Eco-house on the cheap!

cat-new-ans
New Answer in "Fuel-Cells mailing list"
2001-Jan-08 1:29pm
(Answer) (Category) The Reality Sculptors "Faq-O-Matic" : (Category) Mailing Lists : (Category) "Official" Reality Sculptors lists : (Category) Fuel-Cells mailing list :
New Item

2001-Jan-08 1:28pm andy
ans-ins-part
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2001-Jan-08 1:28pm
(Answer) (Category) The Reality Sculptors "Faq-O-Matic" : (Category) Mailing Lists : (Category) "Official" Reality Sculptors lists : (Category) Fuel-Cells mailing list :
Eco-house on the cheap!
The looks Way Cool(tm). :-)
http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?file=/chronicle/archive/2001/01/08/MN172302.DTL
Andy
2001-Jan-08 1:30pm andy
ans-ins-part
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2001-Jan-08 1:30pm
(Category) (Category) The Reality Sculptors "Faq-O-Matic" : (Category) Mailing Lists : (Category) "Official" Reality Sculptors lists :
Domesteading mailing list
The Domesteading mailing list is for the discussion of autonomous houses, composting toilets, emergency/disaster-relief planning, off-the-grid living, and a variety of other topics.
1999-Jun-01 12:46am salsbury
Subcategories:

Answers in this category:
(Answer) Is there a digest version of the Domesteading List?

cat-new-ans
New Answer in "Domesteading mailing list"
1999-Jun-04 12:58am
(Answer) (Category) The Reality Sculptors "Faq-O-Matic" : (Category) Mailing Lists : (Category) "Official" Reality Sculptors lists : (Category) Domesteading mailing list :
Is there a digest version of the Domesteading List?
Yes. Send a note like this to subscribe to the digest:

To: domesteading-digest@sculptors.com
Subject: subscribe
1999-Jun-04 1:02am salsbury
ans-ins-part
Append to This Answer
1999-Jun-04 1:02am
(Category) (Category) The Reality Sculptors "Faq-O-Matic" : (Category) Mailing Lists : (Category) "Official" Reality Sculptors lists :
Airships mailing list
Airships is a forum for the discussion and design of lighter-than-air craft, including blimps, dirigibles, and novel new designs for research, cargo, and passenger use.
1999-Jun-04 12:34am salsbury
Subcategories:

Answers in this category:

cat-new-ans
New Answer in "Airships mailing list"
1999-Jun-04 12:34am
(Category) (Category) The Reality Sculptors "Faq-O-Matic" : (Category) Mailing Lists : (Category) "Official" Reality Sculptors lists :
Autopilot mailing list
Autopilot is for the discussion of how to create autopiloting systems for vehicles. (Ground cars, and eventually, aircars or flying cars.) Discussion ranges from general ideas to technical details.
1999-Jun-04 12:38am salsbury
Subcategories:

Answers in this category:

cat-new-ans
New Answer in "Autopilot mailing list"
1999-Jun-04 12:43am
(Category) (Category) The Reality Sculptors "Faq-O-Matic" : (Category) Mailing Lists : (Category) "Official" Reality Sculptors lists :
Clean-Water mailing list
Clean-water addresses the issues of clean, sustainable water supplies for the various peoples of the world. What the problems are, where the problems are, and how to solve them.
1999-Jun-04 12:41am salsbury
Subcategories:

Answers in this category:
(Answer) New Item
(Answer) New Item

cat-new-ans
New Answer in "Clean-Water mailing list"
2002-Nov-16 8:37pm
(Answer) (Category) The Reality Sculptors "Faq-O-Matic" : (Category) Mailing Lists : (Category) "Official" Reality Sculptors lists : (Category) Clean-Water mailing list :
New Item
What is new in the clean water discussions? Any Updates?
Paul Howard
2012-Mar-11 2:20pm stg
ans-ins-part
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2012-Mar-11 2:20pm
(Answer) (Category) The Reality Sculptors "Faq-O-Matic" : (Category) Mailing Lists : (Category) "Official" Reality Sculptors lists : (Category) Clean-Water mailing list :
New Item
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2002-Nov-16 8:37pm
(Category) (Category) The Reality Sculptors "Faq-O-Matic" : (Category) Mailing Lists : (Category) "Official" Reality Sculptors lists :
Floating-Cities mailing list
Floating-Cities is a forum for the discussion of the design and construction of free-floating ocean-based cities, as well as the political, economic, and social ramifications of creating such constructs around the globe. You should read this to familiarize yourself with the general concepts of the project, and the rest of the Frequently Asked Questions.
1999-Jun-04 12:52am salsbury
Subcategories:

Answers in this category:
(Answer) New Item

cat-new-ans
New Answer in "Floating-Cities mailing list"
2002-Mar-10 7:27am
(Answer) (Category) The Reality Sculptors "Faq-O-Matic" : (Category) Mailing Lists : (Category) "Official" Reality Sculptors lists : (Category) Floating-Cities mailing list :
New Item
ans-ins-part
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2002-Mar-10 7:27am
(Category) (Category) The Reality Sculptors "Faq-O-Matic" : (Category) Mailing Lists : (Category) "Official" Reality Sculptors lists :
Uranium-Hot-Rock mailing list
Uranium-Hot-Rock is a forum or the discussion of the design and engineering of a "hot-rock" that is heated by, you guessed it, uranium. This would be a device about the size of a wood-burning stove, that was adequately shielded so as to prevent radiation leaks, while allowing the entire thing to heat up to several hundred degrees. The idea being that you could then use it to heat your home, cook food, keep your family warm, and never have to worry about a utility bill again. It would also provide something to do with all that so-called "spent" fuel from the nuclear industry.
Nuclear engineers are especially encouraged to join this forum, as there are quite a few technical details to be worked out.
Please don't join the list just to cast disparaging remarks or tell us we're all going to glow and have three heads. If you bring criticism, at least try to make it constructive criticism. Thanks.
1999-Jun-04 1:12am salsbury
Subcategories:

Answers in this category:
(Answer) Isn't the name "Uranium-Hot-Rock" a bit unweildy?

cat-new-ans
New Answer in "Uranium-Hot-Rock mailing list"
1999-Jun-04 1:13am
(Answer) (Category) The Reality Sculptors "Faq-O-Matic" : (Category) Mailing Lists : (Category) "Official" Reality Sculptors lists : (Category) Uranium-Hot-Rock mailing list :
Isn't the name "Uranium-Hot-Rock" a bit unweildy?
Yes, but if we just called it "Hot-Rock", we'd probably end up with lots of music fans who would be terribly disappointed in the list discussions. :-)
1999-Jun-04 1:15am salsbury
ans-ins-part
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1999-Jun-04 1:15am
(Answer) (Category) The Reality Sculptors "Faq-O-Matic" : (Category) Mailing Lists : (Category) "Official" Reality Sculptors lists :
UpSpin mailing list
"UpSpin" takes its name from a yet-to-be-written book that we're collectively working on, tentatively entitled "Haul Your Ass UpSpin! (A How-To Manual for Transplanting Your Life)" The idea originally came from list member Wendy Faust, who, after her move from the East Coast to California, suggested that we put together a how-to manual for other people who are getting ready to do a big move in their life.
The "UpSpin" portion of the name comes from Tim Leary's notion of orientation with regard to planetary axis of spin. The earth spins from west to east, so to move eastward is moving "down-spin", and moving westward is moving "up-spin". Leary noted that most large-scale migrations in history have moved in a westward direction, and thus mostly "upspin".
1999-Jun-15 11:15pm salsbury
ans-ins-part
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1999-Jun-15 11:15pm
(Category) (Category) The Reality Sculptors "Faq-O-Matic" : (Category) Mailing Lists :
"Unofficial" / Non-Sculptors-related lists
These are lists which I host/administer that are not officially related to the Reality Sculptors Project, but focus on some specific interest or community. Some are public, some are semi-private, and the private ones may not even show up here, depending on the wishes of those specific communities.
Subcategories:

Answers in this category:
(Answer) The Sushi mailing list

cat-new-ans
New Answer in ""Unofficial" / Non-Sculptors-related lists"
1999-Jul-20 7:29pm
(Answer) (Category) The Reality Sculptors "Faq-O-Matic" : (Category) Mailing Lists : (Category) "Unofficial" / Non-Sculptors-related lists :
The Sushi mailing list
While not an "official" list in the Reality Sculptors Project, sushi is near and dear to some of our hearts, for there are a good number of us who enjoy the stuff. This is a place to discuss it, find out where the best restaurants are, post reviews of places you did (or didn't) like, etc.
1999-Jun-15 11:08pm salsbury
ans-ins-part
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1999-Jun-15 11:08pm
(Answer) (Category) The Reality Sculptors "Faq-O-Matic" : (Category) Mailing Lists :
How do I join a Reality Sculptors mailing list?
All mailing lists currently in the Reality Sculptors Project have the same basic method of subscription. Full instructions, and a list of discussion topics available are found at http://reality.sculptors.com/lists.html
If you don't see a list in the Project that you think ought to be there (i.e. - some aspect of Reality Sculpting that you want to work on), send me a note and we'll see about getting one started.
1999-Jun-01 12:19am salsbury
ans-ins-part
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1999-Jun-01 12:19am
(Answer) (Category) The Reality Sculptors "Faq-O-Matic" : (Category) Mailing Lists :
Are there archives of the mailing lists available?
Yes.

Various lists in the Reality Sculptors Project are archived starting from http://reality.sculptors.com/archives.html.

Please note that while you can search and browse through the list archives, you must be a member of that list in order to post to it. You can find information about the various lists and how to sign up elsewhere in this section of the FAQ-O-Matic.


2000-Mar-05 5:27am salsbury

ans-ins-part
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2000-Mar-05 5:27am
(Answer) (Category) The Reality Sculptors "Faq-O-Matic" : (Category) Mailing Lists :
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2002-Sep-22 9:44am
(Category) (Category) The Reality Sculptors "Faq-O-Matic" :
"Laws We'd Like To See"
This component of the Reality Sculptors Project is meant as a space where everyday people can post up laws that they'd like to see enacted. This idea has come about as a result of years of talking with friends and family, and hearing some very good suggestions for laws that could effect positive change in our society.

With any luck, our elected "representives" will study these and take them forward. Perhaps some of them may even come to be reality.

A few basic guidelines:

  • Try to be serious. They may be humorous or lighthearted laws, but make sure you don't post anything that you wouldn't actually want to live by. These MAY end up being part of your future.
  • Try to work within the existing set of suggestions posted, (that means you should read through them) and try not to contradict already existing laws. For example, the law that says "No 'rider bills' on other laws" means that you can't attach lots of riders to laws you post. Post each one separately.
  • If you feel something else should be repealed, append a suggestion for repealling to the law in question, and why you think it's important/necessary.

If you have ever had that feeling of "I could come up with a better law than that!", then this is your chance.

Have fun! :-)
2000-May-21 4:32pm salsbury

Subcategories:

Answers in this category:
(Answer) All laws must fit on one single-sided, double-spaced, typewritten sheet of paper.
(Answer) No "rider bills" may be attached to other laws.
(Answer) All laws are dated, and expire automatically after a period of 10 years.
(Answer) Tax Day and Election Day are moved to the same day.
(Answer) Electronic Voting
(Answer) No Political Campaigning For More Than 60 Days
(Answer) All Campaign Contributions Are Taxable As Income
(Answer) US Immigration Restrictions are Removed
(Answer) All tax hikes must be labeled as such.
(Answer) Clarity and Brevity of Proposals Placed Before the Voting Public
(Answer) Exceptions
(Answer) Cancellations and Ammendments
(Answer) Budgets and Government Expenses
(Answer) "Line Item Taxation"
(Answer) Separation of Authorities
(Answer) Technical Accuracy in Political Discussion and Media Reporting
(Answer) The Ethnic Impartiality Act
(Answer) The Voting Freedom Amendment
(Answer) The Party Selection Amendment

cat-new-ans
New Answer in ""Laws We'd Like To See""
2002-Nov-30 8:19pm
(Answer) (Category) The Reality Sculptors "Faq-O-Matic" : (Category) "Laws We'd Like To See" :
All laws must fit on one single-sided, double-spaced, typewritten sheet of paper.
In 12-point font, or larger. :-)

1999-Jun-06 5:58pm salsbury
And of course, this should be on standard sized paper. 8.5"x11" for US, or A4 for Europe, etc.
1999-Jun-15 9:34pm salsbury
All laws should also be in PlainText or ASCII or some related "universal" font scheme - none of this MS Word nor Adobe nor even HTML stuff. :-)
1999-Jun-15 9:42pm grosser
All current laws that do not fit within these guidelines are immediately repealed.
Between this and the 10-year limit, we'll pretty much be starting from scratch.
1999-Jun-15 10:53pm keithr
All words must be short.
No word should be longer than "understanding".
There should be an eligibility test - every adult of legal age should be able to explain the law correctly in 10 short sentences or less.
This is the Einstein Understanding test.
2000-Jun-20 12:47am yron
The laws must not be greater than 1600 characters (including spaces)
2008-Aug-26 2:04am timothy.anderson.1992
ans-ins-part
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2008-Aug-26 2:04am
(Answer) (Category) The Reality Sculptors "Faq-O-Matic" : (Category) "Laws We'd Like To See" :
No "rider bills" may be attached to other laws.
In the interest of simplicity, (and in keeping with the size requirements set up previously), all laws must be submitted on their own single-sided, double-spaced, typewritten sheet of paper (in 12-point font or larger).

No law or bill may be "attached" conditionally to another. This allows each one to be evaluated purely on its own merits, with no conflict of interests.
1999-Jun-06 6:10pm salsbury

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1999-Jun-06 6:10pm
(Answer) (Category) The Reality Sculptors "Faq-O-Matic" : (Category) "Laws We'd Like To See" :
All laws are dated, and expire automatically after a period of 10 years.
This law is designed to take societal drift and evolution into consideration. All laws will expire 10 years after inception. They may not be renewed, but a duplicate law (or some revision thereof) may be re-enacted via the standard procedure.

All laws already on the books that are more than 10 years old expire immediately, and must have similar laws enacted for the ones still deemed worthwhile.

All laws already on the books that are less than 10 years old expire 10 years after their individual inception dates.
1999-Jun-06 6:15pm salsbury

ans-ins-part
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1999-Jun-06 6:15pm
(Answer) (Category) The Reality Sculptors "Faq-O-Matic" : (Category) "Laws We'd Like To See" :
Tax Day and Election Day are moved to the same day.
This was originally proposed a year or so back, by a Representative in Arizona, I think. He said something to the effect of "I can think of no single action that will help to reform Government, than to have people pay as they vote." (This was spotted on the cover of a Wall Street Journal.)
Could be that both fall on April 15th, or on "Super Tuesday", or some other day entirely. But they should coincide, so that Campaigners really have something to talk about in the coming election, and the Voters really have something to pay attention to.
1999-Jun-12 2:34pm salsbury
I would hate to see the impact this would have on voter turnout, however - And not for any of the "right" reasons one might consider! (Scramble, scramble)
1999-Jun-16 1:09am lbenham
ans-ins-part
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1999-Jun-16 1:09am
(Answer) (Category) The Reality Sculptors "Faq-O-Matic" : (Category) "Laws We'd Like To See" :
Electronic Voting
All new laws will be posted in an authenticated electronic forum to be voted on by authenticated voters. After 1 week, the law either passes or is removed. A law passes if a majority of those who vote on it vote YES. A law does not pass if a majority of those who vote on it vote NO.
Only a fixed number of laws may be up for vote on a given week. This number shall be small enough the a voter can read, decide, and vote on all laws within one hour a day. This number should be determined by steadilly increasing the number of laws presented each week until more voters take about an hour to read, decide, and vote on them.
Discussion for any law can be held in any forum.
Laws are submitted elecronically by any registered voter and distributed to the actual list of open laws in the order received. A law may be removed or modified by the writer at any time until it goes into the list of open potential laws for all to vote on.
1999-Aug-03 7:36am skeeter.murphy
If I understand this, it's an automated form of direct democracy. I don't think Skeeter is badly intentioned, but this is a sufficiently bad idea that it deserves to be squashed, if possible. Athens was a direct democracy. Basically, 1000 citizens were chosen by lot every so often to be the "Assembly." The founders of Athens figured that 1000 people was too many to bribe, and large enough to represent the whole society. They were right on both counts, however, other problems rapidly made an appearance, because these ordinary people were not skilled in running a government.
First, orators became the wealthiest people in Athens. A skilled orator would go persuade the Assembly to do something, and then just happen to have cornered the market in the essential ingredient (sculptors... when the Gods needed new statues, etc.). This impoverished the state and enriched the orators. Schools of Oratory sprang up everywhere, and they were very expensive to attend.
Second, the Assembly sometimes made VERY bad decisions. The one that persuaded the U.S.'s founding fathers to have a Republic (a representative democracy, i.e. actually run by specialists) was the aftermath of the battle of Mytilene. Everybody in the Athenian military was a volunteer, including the generals. The Athenian navy, best in the world at the time, won the battle of Mytilene, but was trapped in a storm. Many Athenian sailors perished, and were lost in the storm, and could not be properly cremated or buried (a great religious sin at the time). An orator persuaded the Assembly to convict the 5 "responsible" Strategoi (general/admiral) of impiety- which carried a mandatory death penalty. Four were seized and killed at once. One escaped. Less than a day later, the Assembly changed its mind-- too late. There is great speculation that the reason Athens lost the next Spartan war, thirty years later (and was carried off into captivity as slaves), was because the best men no longer wanted to be Strategoi. The same government structure is the one that sentenced Socrates to death. Direct democracy is a Bad idea. Bad.
2002-Nov-30 7:14pm rgvandewalker
Why don't you use some system of representative democracy i.e. have politicians but allow the citizen to override the politician. for more go to http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Representative_direct_democracy
2008-Sep-01 4:24am timothy.anderson.1992
record which representative was voted for by each person and if they vote, subtract 1 from their representatives voting power. For example if I were to vote for John Rep and my friend was to vote for Joe Bloggs, we could still vote and if we did, then our vote would decrease the representatives voting power. Allow as many representatives as wanted. Allow representatives to have representatives. For example, if I were to elect my friend as my representative, but he forgot to vote, then his representative would vote.
2008-Sep-02 3:41am timothy.anderson.1992
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2008-Sep-02 3:41am
(Answer) (Category) The Reality Sculptors "Faq-O-Matic" : (Category) "Laws We'd Like To See" :
No Political Campaigning For More Than 60 Days
People running for any political office may not begin campaigning more than 60 days before the election for that office. Anyone doing so is immediately disqualified, and barred from ever holding that elected position.
1999-Sep-08 9:45am salsbury
ans-ins-part
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1999-Sep-08 9:45am
(Answer) (Category) The Reality Sculptors "Faq-O-Matic" : (Category) "Laws We'd Like To See" :
All Campaign Contributions Are Taxable As Income
All monies received by anyone running for any public office (campaign contributions, fund-raisers, "soft-money", "hard-money", and the like) are to be taxed as income for the Candidate in question, and at the appropriate level of taxation for that income level.

For example, recently, George W. Bush raised approximately $36 million in about one weekend of fund-raising. That $36 million, plus any other contributions, is added to his other income, and taxed at the appropriate rate.

There are no deductions, exemptions, discounts, tax-shelters, or other tax loopholes which may be applied to any campaign contribution money. It is all taxed at the full rate.

Similarly, campaign contributors may not claim any deductions, exemptions, discounts, tax-shelters, or other tax loopholes for money they contribute to political candidates.


1999-Sep-08 9:58am salsbury

ans-ins-part
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1999-Sep-08 9:58am
(Answer) (Category) The Reality Sculptors "Faq-O-Matic" : (Category) "Laws We'd Like To See" :
US Immigration Restrictions are Removed
In Article I, Section 9, Paragraph 1 of The Constitution of the United States of America, that the word "one" be struck out and replaced with the word "two".
2000-May-08 11:46am salsbury
Another reader pointed out that the original wording (Originally called the "Two for One Proposal" was, in fact, a rider-bill attached to the US Constitution, and requested that I re-write it as its own standalone law. At the time, I was trying to be cute and show that a simple change of one word would radically alter the policy regarding immigration. I agree with that reader's assessment that it was a rider, so the full text of the new law is below.

The intent was to put an end to all the quibbling about immigrants and immigration laws, as was done during the first 20 years of America's history as a country. At that point in time, the founding fathers realized that there was a country to build, and it was counter-productive to fight about who could come in. So they threw open the doors and created the "land of opportunity" that we still cherish and idealize, but which in all actuality doesn't currently exist as it originally did.

Also, in thinking about this, I realized that putting an 800-year timespan in the law, while certainly underscoring the point that we should not be spending so much time worrying about immigration, funding border patrols, the INS, and all the attendant costs associated with immigrants, contradicts the also-listed 10-year expiration rule in a different law. So, to keep in line with the "no riders" and "10-year" laws, here is my rewritten text for this proposed law:

The migration or importation of such persons as any of the states now existing shall think proper to admit, shall not be prohibited by the Congress, but a tax or duty may be imposed on such importation, not exceeding one hundred dollars for each person.

New immigrants are welcome to participate in building the country/economy, are eligible to apply for citizenship, are eligible for any jobs that they qualify for, but are not eligible for welfare-type social services for a period of 5 years after arrival in the US, or until they are naturalized as US citizens, whichever comes first.

Notes:

  • The one-hundred dollar figure has been arrived at by calculating the inflated rate of the original ten-dollar amount specified in the US Constitution for roughly current rates, then rounding up a bit. I used The Inflation Calculator to calculate the value of $10.00 in the year 1800 (the first year on their calculator) in 1999 dollars (the last year on their calculator, as of this writing.) The value they gave was $95.07 in 1999 dollars.
  • This law would be subject to the same 10-year expiration as other laws, allowing for periodic review, and re-enactment, if it was found to be desirable. It would also allow for recalculation of the cost due to inflation.
  • Both the original clause in the US Constitution and the above proposed rewrite have a reasonable maximum cost for processing fees, but not an overly exorbitant one.
  • The main complaint most Americans have about immigrants is the claim that they "steal jobs" or "go on welfare" (paid for by American tax dollars). While the concern about welfare may be valid (and is addressed in the rewritten text), it should be remembered that the "jobs" being done by immigrants are often not those which Americans like to do, and that the first time this experiment was conducted, two centuries ago, there was an explosive growth in America as these new immigrants brought culture, energy, and many new hands, backs, and minds to America, and brought them to bear upon the task of building a new country. This period saw a huge growth of new cities, towns, industry, etc. It seems to have been a successful experiment, and this proposal seeks to repeat the experiment, and quell lots of bickering and expense in trying to keep out those who most wish to help build the American Dream.

2000-Aug-10 10:52am salsbury
ans-ins-part
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2000-Aug-10 10:52am
(Answer) (Category) The Reality Sculptors "Faq-O-Matic" : (Category) "Laws We'd Like To See" :
All tax hikes must be labeled as such.
Any legislation which would result in an increase in taxes must have the words "Tax Hike" in their title.

For example, a bond act that would raise money for schools and result in a 25 year payback schedule with interest charges (meaning more money must come from taxes to pay it off) would be titled something like "School Improvements and Class Size Reduction Tax Hike".

A water bill to raise money providing for new supplies of drinking water or public works projects for dams, reservoirs, etc. would be titled something like "Clean and Safe Water Supply Tax Hike", etc.

This is essentially a "truth in advertising" clause, since most people see the phrases for "Safe Water" or "Protecting Children" or whatever, and don't understand that they will eventually be paying up to (or exceeding) twice as much for the loan that the bond is taking out. Money to pay this loan back must come from a future increase in taxes, since that's how goverment makes its money.

No restrictions are placed on the amount of any bond, or its intended use. There's just a requirement that it be clearly labeled so that voters understand that they will be paying for this in the future with an increase in taxes, rather than up front with existing revenues.


2000-May-08 12:00pm salsbury

Each law, tax or bill shall specify ALL consequences and sequeals for: the first year the first 5 years the first 20 years 50 years ahead.
These shall be dynamically updated, according to actual occurances.
Whenever these are deemed unwanted, a law can be made to cancel the original. This cancelation law will do only that, and nothing else. No strings can be attached to cancelation laws.
2000-Jun-20 1:04am yron
While I like and support the law-cancellation idea, and the 5% excess of people (mentioned elsewhere in this FAQ) who voted for the original in order to overturn the law, I no of *no* way to accurately specify (or even predict) all of the consequences that the future may hold on our actions. If we were able to do that, then we probably would have gotten a perfect set of laws a few centuries ago, and would need to keep developing new ones.

Periodic review of laws is a good thing, and that's what the 10-year expiration is for. It often takes 1-3 years for sluggish society to really begin to follow and have time to guage a law, so a 1-year review might be premature, but a 5-year might be good. Or, if it really was a bad law, it's very likely that it wouldn't be reenacted after the 10-year expiration happens.

20 and 50 year consequences are also practically impossible to predict, and fall well outside the 10-year scope of any law, so I'd suggest we drop that part.


2000-Nov-03 9:13pm salsbury

ans-ins-part
Append to This Answer
2000-Nov-03 9:13pm
(Answer) (Category) The Reality Sculptors "Faq-O-Matic" : (Category) "Laws We'd Like To See" :
Clarity and Brevity of Proposals Placed Before the Voting Public
All proposals/referendums (referenda?)/propositions should, before being "accepted" for placement on ballots, be edited for clarity and brevity by independent reviewers.
All too often, proposals contain language that muddles issues and confuses people because of deceptive use of selective language modifiers - i.e. changing the meaning of a statement by using negatives, double-negatives, and other bits that add obfuscation. :-) California's infamous Propositions are prime examples of this type of action. In reading the official state documents regarding issues at hand, one needs to frequently re-read and scrutinize the text in order to fully glean even the simplest concepts. A reduction in the "legalese" and an increase in the clear diction of proposals might lead to lower levels of apathy and a more realistic representation of the voting demographics of a particular region.
2000-May-24 11:19am andy
All proposals / propositions / referanda shall be phrased only in positive terms, always stating only what is allowed, thereby making anything not clearly allowed as forbidden.
2000-Oct-01 12:33am yron
I disagree with the "everything not permitted is expressly forbidden" idea. For one, it's rather tyrannical, and would lead to a very un-free populace who were afraid to do anything. For another, it seems to go against our current laws, as laid out in the Constitution of the US. (Granted, other countries may not have these freedoms inherent in their current systems, but this seems like a step back, to me.)

To wit, take these two examples from tbe Bill Of Rights:

Amendment IX
The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.

Amendment X
The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the states, are reserved to the states respectively, or to the people.

These clearly show an opposing view of "Those things which are not forbidden are expressly permitted."

I actually think the Yron's appended answer to the first "Single-sided-page" law where he calls for adults being able to explain in 10 sentences or less to be perhaps a better way of approaching this. If the law can pass this so-called "Einstein Understanding" test, then it will have achieved the Clarity and Brevity that we'd all like to see.


2000-Nov-03 9:06pm salsbury

ans-ins-part
Append to This Answer
2000-Nov-03 9:06pm
(Answer) (Category) The Reality Sculptors "Faq-O-Matic" : (Category) "Laws We'd Like To See" :
Exceptions
All laws shall be applicable and applied to all, unser all circumstances, at all times.
No law shall have exceptions of any kind.
Exceptions consolidate inequality, and are completey banned from the law and the constitutions.
ans-ins-part
Append to This Answer
yron
2000-Jun-20 1:19am
(Answer) (Category) The Reality Sculptors "Faq-O-Matic" : (Category) "Laws We'd Like To See" :
Cancellations and Ammendments
No ammendnents can be made to rules.
Unusable rules can be cancelled even before their expirations.
Cancellation shall be made by a "cancellation law".
Cancellation laws shall only state the one single law they cancel, the proportion of population that voted "Yeah" for that law, and cancelation date.
There shall be no conditions, nor any strings attached to cancellation laws.
Cancellation laws shall pass only if the proportion of population that votes for them is 5% larger or more than the proportion of the population that approved the original law, now under threat of cancelation.
2000-Jun-20 11:24am yron, salsbury
(Minor typo corrections to above...)

This is a good suggestion. We can see a great example of this in the US Constitution, Article XXI, Section 1, which simply states:

The eighteenth article of amendment to the Constitution of the United States is hereby repealed.

Very simple, and right to the point. This also ties in well with the "clearly written" suggestions in other parts of this section.


2000-Jun-20 11:36am salsbury

ans-ins-part
Append to This Answer
2000-Jun-20 11:36am
(Answer) (Category) The Reality Sculptors "Faq-O-Matic" : (Category) "Laws We'd Like To See" :
Budgets and Government Expenses
Every year, each person shall receive personal tax forecast for the next 5 years.
The tax forecast shall contain predicted tax sums for each year, and the exact manner in which they were derived.
Each forecast shall also include a list of projects and issues the government wants to realize.
Every person shall be free to allocate his or hers tax money to the different projects, any way he or she deems appropriate.
Projects with insufficient funs shall be canceled automatically, and the money returned to the tax payer.

There should also be more openness with where other monies are being spent. Not just how much you'll have to pay, but where that money is going, very specifically.
For instance, the cost of every governmental contract (how will this affect "secret" projects, like classified military spending... should there be any, or should the budgets not be classified?). How much each governmental employee and contract gets, down to the penny.
ans-ins-part
Append to This Answer
yron, scriven
2002-Oct-11 12:53pm
(Answer) (Category) The Reality Sculptors "Faq-O-Matic" : (Category) "Laws We'd Like To See" :
"Line Item Taxation"
(This one ties in with the budget item, above.)

Each Citizen, when filling out their tax forms, is provided with a list of government programs, and may choose which items they wish their taxes to go towards, in minimum increments of 1% of their total tax burden.

For example, you may have a list like this:

  • _____ I don't care. Let the Government pick for me.
  • _____ Schools
  • _____ Roads
  • _____ Police
  • _____ Building jails
  • _____ Fire Departments
  • _____ Military
  • _____ Weapons of mass destruction
  • _____ Hospitals
  • _____ Welfare
  • _____ Social Security
Of course, this list would likely be hundreds (or thousands) of lines long, giving the taxpayer lots of choice into how their money is spent. The "I don't care" line is very important, as it allows the voter to skip this step in the process, and have things stay as they currently are. But for other citizens who may object to certain government programs, they may choose not to fund them.

All percentages must add up to 100%. Any left over percentages (such as if a taxpayer only allocated 75% of their funds, the remaining 25%) would go into the "I don't care" bin, and could be appropriated by standard government methods.

If percentages exceed 100%, then they are trimmed back to 100%, according to some algorithm, yet to be decided. (Perhaps just stopping when the totals reach 100%, although that would favor programs at the beginning of the list. Perhaps chosen at random from the programs the taxpayer chose.)

Funds may not be moved from one allocation bin to another by the government. Programs are funded based on what they receive from the taxpayer choices, and whatever is left over in the "I don't care" bin. Money may not be diverted from, say, the "Education" bin to pay for a sudden shortfall in, say, the "Weapons of mass destruction" bin.

This format of taxation allocation would be applied equally on all levels: Federal, State, and Local. Thus, any tax money that a citizen pays into any level of goverment would be directable to the programs that they see fit to support.

This would, of course, remove the need for all "special" taxes, bond measures, and specific levies such as property taxes, measure "X" funds, etc. Taxes may still be levied for things such as owning property, but where that money goes is left up to the people paying that tax, not the people collecting it.


2000-Jun-20 12:04pm salsbury

I got a reply in email to this from Skeeter Murphy who raised some issues. I'll post his stuff here, then my replies separately. Pat


I was browsing through the laws FAQ and have a comment for the Line Item Taxes law.

This won't work. Here's why...

Say I'm anti-build-jail. Say lots of people are. This is probably common, people think, "man, I wish we didn't need so many jails, I'll stop funding them". Then, in a couple years, there's not enough funding for jails and there's still a lot of criminals. Where do they get put. I guess we just set them free, cause there's nowhere to put them.

Things like police, fire, hospitals, etc just need funding based on the needs in each community. The general population doesn't know what the budget requirements are for these in terms of the percentages they choose.

Back to jails. Not funding them won't solve the problem. They need money based on the number of inmates. That number can be reduced via education (I believe).

Now, the real question is: how do you determine what line items should be included, and which items just need funded. Maybe the line items can get whatever is left over after certain "required services" are funded.

Determining the "required services" is a big issue too.

Different topic. The laws FAQ doesn't really talk about scope. I was assuming it was federal level laws. States may also have a similar system if they wanted. Is that true?

Also, you can easilly scale the percentages people choose so they add to 100%, you just allow for fractional percentages. Not that big a deal. Just choose how many decimal places. Plus, you'll need that to deal with more than 100 items to choose from.

I guess the point here is that you're giving funding choices to people that aren't informed of funding requirements. Now I know you'll say, "They should be informed." Well, a lot of people just don't care enough to be informed and will think they're informed enough to know. We know that it takes lots of people working full time to figure out budget stuff, so 'normal' people shouldn't be required to know it.

I think the other bills that clearly mark tax hikes should be as far as this goes.

So there...(deep breath and exhale)

Skeeter



2000-Nov-03 10:07pm salsbury
Here are my replies to Skeeter:


This won't work. Here's why...

Say I'm anti-build-jail. Say lots of people are. This is probably common, people think, "man, I wish we didn't need so many jails, I'll stop funding them". Then, in a couple years, there's not enough funding for jails and there's still a lot of criminals. Where do they get put. I guess we just set them free, cause there's nowhere to put them.

Each year, people pay taxes. Each year, they get to decide. If you suddenly realize that there isn't enough funding going to jails, you may decide to switch from anti- to pro-jail, and put 100% into it, encouraging your friends and co-workers to do so, putting up signs, etc. The budget cycle on this stuff is really quite a rapid turn-around.

In fact, that's part of the point of things like the 10-year expiration. Why should a law be set-in-stone forever, just because someone thinks it's a good idea now? Given how much contention we see over relatively simple issues like whether to fund a school bond issue, or whether same-sex couples can be called "married", what makes us think that the answer we arrive at now should stand for all time as the "One True Answer"?

Auto-expiration takes care of that by allowing for societal drift. If, in 10 years, we collectively have a new definition of "marriage", then we can adopt it. If not, we can re-enact the law prohibiting it to same-sex couples, as they recently did in California.

The same adaptive-cycling applies to tax-funded items, but on a scale 10-times faster (and thus even more adaptive) than the actual laws are to social needs and pressures.

Things like police, fire, hospitals, etc just need funding based on the needs in each community. The general population doesn't know what the budget requirements are for these in terms of the percentages they choose.

People can (and do) decide on their own contributions to charities, churches, political campaigns, school functions and fund-raisers, not to mention all their normal budgeting for food, school supplies, clothing, bills, etc. Adding in a way for them to give direct feedback on social services seems to me like a very empowering thing, and includes the sorts of checks-and-balances that the democratic process prides itself on:

-If you don't think that the City Department of Landscaping really needs $6.5 million dollars to plant flowers, and you'd rather see that money go to the Public Library, you can make that choice, with your dollars. Next year, you can switch back to flowers, if you so desire.

Remember, also, that the AMOUNT of tax money to government isn't changing under this proposed law, just the ALLOCATION. Government is still getting the same cut, but its priorities are being set by the constituents, not out-of-touch politicians with a vested interest in retaining power & money for their own personal fiefdom.

Back to jails. Not funding them won't solve the problem. They need money based on the number of inmates. That number can be reduced via education (I believe).

They can also be reduced by changing other laws, which really is beyond the scope of this specific law. However, I encourage you to do some research into the demographics of prison populations, and also look at the growth-rates in the various sectors. Good places to start looking are:

These last two are especially good. They show that drug populations in prison constitute 21% of the 1998 prison population (as distinct from violent crime). Thus, a change in other laws, such as decriminalizing the possession of drugs, would drop the prison-crowding rate overnight by about 20%. Again, that's a discussion for another time. :-)

Now, the real question is: how do you determine what line items should be included, and which items just need funded. Maybe the line items can get whatever is left over after certain "required services" are funded. Determining the "required services" is a big issue too.

I propose listing every government service that is currently funded by tax money. If it's not listed, it doesn't get funded. If it is listed, it may freely compete with other listees for funding.

Ask yourself this: If there really, truly is some service that gets ZERO funding from ANYONE, is that a needed service?

If there really, truly is some service that gets a vanishingly small amount of funding, is that a valid use of collective government tax money? The term for such items is "Special Interest", and that's usually viewed by most people as a non-valid use.

Different topic. The laws FAQ doesn't really talk about scope. I was assuming it was federal level laws. States may also have a similar system if they wanted. Is that true?

Sure, I don't see why not. We've only got about 15 of them up there, so far, and those radically alter the legal landscape. There's certainly room for more, although I'm in favor of simple systems. I would recommend adopting the basics (such as 1-page, no riders, 10-year expire, line-item taxation) as a framework for all laws, at all levels.

Well-written laws should be applicable for all levels. If they're too specialized, I would argue that they aren't well-written, and cater to special interests.

Also, you can easilly scale the percentages people choose so they add to 100%, you just allow for fractional percentages. Not that big a deal. Just choose how many decimal places. Plus, you'll need that to deal with more than 100 items to choose from.

True enough. However, getting most people to make 100 choices is difficult. I suspect that adding the decimal places certainly couldn't hurt.

And having thought about it some more, I agree that it should probably go out to at least five decimal places. That would bring granularity down to about $.01 resolution for someone paying $10,000/year in taxes, and $.10 resolution for someone (or a corporation) paying $100,000/year. Actually, we should probably drop it more decimal places than that. Maybe a sliding-scale adjustment so you can always pay to the penny, depending on how many digits you're paying on the LEFT side of the decimal point! :-)

I guess the point here is that you're giving funding choices to people that aren't informed of funding requirements. Now I know you'll say, "They should be informed." Well, a lot of people just don't care enough to be informed and will think they're informed enough to know. We know that it takes lots of people working full time to figure out budget stuff, so 'normal' people shouldn't be required to know it.

That's what the "I don't care, let the government choose for me" section is for. And that should be the first item, and the default if they don't select anything. It's also the overflow-buffer. If you only chose 72% of your funding, the other 28% would go into the General Fund, and be divided up normally.

Remember that this is an *augmentation* to the current system, not an either/or decision. It's designed to allow more flexibility, enable more choice and control (thus, democracy), and weed out cruft, without reducing the overall amount of money going to the government.

I think the other bills that clearly mark tax hikes should be as far as this goes.

I'm not sure I follow. You mean merely labelling all new tax-hikes, and allowing them to be approved/disapproved by vote, but leaving all existing waste and misallocation in place? That doesn't seem like nearly as flexible or elegant a solution.

So there...(deep breath and exhale) Skeeter

Indeed! :-)
2000-Nov-03 10:03pm salsbury

One way to get around the "what to do if the percentages are > 100%" problem, is to scale all the numbers back so they do add up to 100%, but keeping their relative sizes the same. I suppose it should be a choice though, whether they want relative-redistribution or some other method (like the random selection above).
2003-May-30 8:31am scriven
If someone explicitly puts 0% on a line, it should mean "Don't fund this from my money, not even from the 'Don't Care' fraction."
2006-Aug-10 7:26am gabor
ans-ins-part
Append to This Answer
2006-Aug-10 7:26am
(Answer) (Category) The Reality Sculptors "Faq-O-Matic" : (Category) "Laws We'd Like To See" :
Separation of Authorities
Authorities shall consist of three distinct bodies:
The rule making body, who are the people themselves, with no delegations of power or voting rights.
The Government, who is nominated to perform specific duties, as are supported by taxpayers taxes.
The Judging body, which will have two functions: to keep track of Government and ruling activities, and to settle suits.
There shall be no separation between criminal and civil charges.
All suits shall be settled by mediation, or arbitration. If such settlement cannot be reached, both parties shall have to finance any expences occuring because of courthouse sessions.
2001-Aug-12 12:14pm yron, salsbury
(I made minor spelling corrections to the above.)

I question the non-separation of civil and criminal issues. Does that mean that a noisy neighbor who's got a barking dog has to serve jail time? Or does that mean that a convicted murderer only has to serve so many hours of community service? I think that the current system is there for a reason, and that there is a clear distinction between certain things that are criminal, and those which are merely civil disagreements.

However, I will add that a variety of non-violent, consensual adult activities seem to have erroneously been categorized as "crimes" (and get jail time), even though no one is hurt, and the parties agree to this behavior. Homosexuality (still illegal in some states), drug usage, and certain sexual acts being examples of these sorts of seeming miscategorizations.

I disagree about both parties having to pay equal amounts of court costs, at least in some cases. There are a good many court cases nowadays that are deemed "frivolous" and are only brought about in order to cost one party a lot of money, and/or to delay them from action. It's quite common to hear about cases being filed to stop some corporation from carrying on some activity. The suing party knows they won't win, but figures that they can stall things for a few years, and cost the company (or person) millions of dollars. Your system would further encourage that behavior, by dictating that, win or lose, each side would have to pay half of the costs. So the company/person in question would still lose millions of dollars, whether they were judged for or against.

The "loser must pay" system helps to discourage some of this behavior, because if a person or group challenges another person or group with the knowledge that they might not win, they also bear the risk of having to shell out millions of dollars in costs to cover their frivolous actions.


2001-Aug-12 12:28pm salsbury

The problem as I see it with the "loser must pay" system is that it requires each side be equally funded, so that the case is won or lost on it's merits, and not because one party can throw billions of dollars at a case, possibly overwhelming a smaller party into submission.
So perhaps it's "loser must pay", but there is some sort of system in place to make sure that even poor parties get the same level of representation as the not poor parties.
2002-Oct-11 1:11pm scriven
There are two things wrong with the basic proposal.
First, it is a direct democracy. We are all better off if we are ruled by specialists. This is why the U.S. has a republic: The founding fathers knew about the historic failures of direct democracy, as shown by Athenian history: Rule by Orators, and very bad decisions. Direct demoncracy sentenced Socrates to death. It also produced the aftermath of the battle of Mytilene (in which the athenian assembly sentenced the five successful generals to death because they could not reclaim sailors from a storm for a respectful burial- and then changed their collective mind less than a day later, after four generals had been executed). The aftermath of Mytilene may be why Athen lost its next war with Sparta: No smart generals wanted to lead. The counter-example of Mytilene is why the U.S. and most western "democracies" are really republics (i.e. with specialists selected by democratic elections).
Second, division of powers creates an ineffective, irresponsible government. Each group can point fingers at the other, claiming that it is not responsible for the failures of government. As New Zealand shows, a truly responsible unicameric parliament is not despotic, and can be very efficient. It is true that no group or individual can claim absolute power in a divided constitution. However this is an illusory issue, created by Montesquieue's complete misunderstanding of the nature of government. The military really holds absolute power in government, not any civil administration. Any government is constrained by the civic conscience of its military officers, so it must obey its constitution or be removed by the military.
2002-Nov-30 8:55pm rgvandewalker
Athens is not the only example of direct democracy, the Swiss are using it too, and it seems to be working just fine (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Switzerland#Direct_democracy)
2006-Aug-10 7:44am gabor
ans-ins-part
Append to This Answer
2006-Aug-10 7:44am
(Answer) (Category) The Reality Sculptors "Faq-O-Matic" : (Category) "Laws We'd Like To See" :
Technical Accuracy in Political Discussion and Media Reporting
All political discussion and media reporting shall be restricted to scientifically and technically accurate terminology. The use of politically loaded phrases (sometimes referred to as "so-called" names, or denoted with "a.k.a.") is to be banned from public discourse as a behavior that promotes the "dumbing down" of our populace by not requiring them to become familiar with the proper terms and conditions under discussion.

Examples from the current media:

  • "Partial birth abortion" would be referred to by its medical terminology, such as "third-trimester abortion" or "dilation and extraction procedure".
  • The "French Abortion Pill" or "morning-after pill" would be referred to by its scientific names "RU486" or "Mifepristone".
  • "Stem Cells" are actually referred to in the scientific literature as "Stem Cells" or "Pluripotent Stem Cells" and come from a variety of sources, including embryonic, fetal, and adult tissues. Unfortunately, much of the distinction has been lost in the popular media, as the level of discussion is reduced from scientific and medical levels to that of a "Frankenstein monster" level. (i.e. - scare-mongering by simplification and "dumbing down", rather than continuing the technical discussions on technical levels.
The assumption here is that if you wish to express your opinion in a public forum, then it should be an informed and technically accurate opinion. And it is the duty of anyone responsible for making decisions about these matters to be informed and technically accurate. This includes politicians, who should be expected to converse at a technically literate level, or refrain from contributing on the matter, recognizing that they aren't qualified to speak. Media sources, reporters, and editors should also be held to high standards, and should be required to use scientifically accurate terminology, or refrain from publishing.

Our current practices of allowing any and all uninformed opinions and slang/buzzwords to creep into our public discourse seems to be having a deleterious effect on our collective level of discussion, and seems to be leading to the dumbing-down and poor thinking/debating skills we see exhibited throughout the country today. Too often the true meaning of the debate is lost in a devolution to inaccurate but emotionally loaded terminology. This proposal would seek to remedy that by requiring people to become at least functionally literate in the topic they wish to discuss, or stay out of the discussion.


ans-ins-part
Append to This Answer
2001-Aug-12 1:16pm
(Answer) (Category) The Reality Sculptors "Faq-O-Matic" : (Category) "Laws We'd Like To See" :
The Ethnic Impartiality Act
The purpose of this law is to reduce ethnic and religious strife with regard to a government.
The government shall not form or fund organizations that recognizably promote a language, religion or ethnic belief. This includes schools, places of worship, festivals, static displays and translators. The national legislature shall designate a bridge language to which all others may be translated, and from which all others must be translated. All government texts shall be originated in the bridge language, which is merely a practical necessity of government.
Any group of one hundred or more people may register an organization to promote any language, religion or ethnic belief. Thereafter any taxpayer may register to allocate up to ten percent of its taxes to any combination of such registered organizations.
All registered organizations shall publish three curricula in the bridge language. One, usable in thirty minutes by an average person, suitable to prevent soldiers and tourists from committing offenses against the beliefs of the members of the organization. A second suitable for use in a primary school by ten-year olds, not to exceed five curriculum hours, which shall include the first as a subset. A third that can reproduce the major cultural artifacts of the organization, and permit full adoption of a willing candidate into candidacy for the most elite or authoritative group of the organization within ten years or less. The elite curricula may require special schools and language courses, and the majority of its curricula may be in an ethnic language, but fluency in the bridge language shall be a requirement.
The government of any region may require any three of the ten most populous language organizations to provide translations for signs, public notices and laws.
The government of any region may freely solicit any registered group for cultural advice and aid with regard to its members.
Any registered organization shall have the right to bring suit, own property and distribute it for any purpose other than tax evasion.
A registered organization loses registration when it fails to carry out a reasonable request by the government. That is, a request that has little or no fiscal impact on the organization, but directly affects a person or group with membership in the organization. This is specifically to help the government to recruit clerics for military and prison, recruit language teachers, and solicit advice with regard to legislation and court cases.
(this law is not my idea- I heard it on the MacNeil-Lehrer news hour, attributed to an Austrian diplomat)
2002-Nov-30 7:54pm rgvandewalker
ans-ins-part
Append to This Answer
2002-Nov-30 7:54pm
(Answer) (Category) The Reality Sculptors "Faq-O-Matic" : (Category) "Laws We'd Like To See" :
The Voting Freedom Amendment
It is known that winner-take-all voting systems promote the formation of two-party political systems. The caucuses naturally formed in this system suppress national discussion of policies and the formation of political parties with precise agendas.
Therefore, all voting bodies shall henceforth adopt the australian preference list voting method. In this method, a ballot shall permit a voter to assign a numbered preference to any or all candidates or issues within a ballot item. When the ballots are processed, the selection with the smallest number of total votes shall be dropped. The voters' highest priority remaining selection shall be recounted, providing an automatic runoff. The automatic runoffs shall repeat until a majority of voters have selected a ballot item.
2002-Nov-30 8:17pm rgvandewalker
ans-ins-part
Append to This Answer
2002-Nov-30 8:17pm
(Answer) (Category) The Reality Sculptors "Faq-O-Matic" : (Category) "Laws We'd Like To See" :
The Party Selection Amendment
To permit government to be both effective and responsible, there shall be one legislature, which shall also act as the supreme aribiter of law, and which shall select from its members to head the administration of government.
Members of the legislature shall be selected from the parties selected by the citizens, in proportion to their votes, from a preference list determined by each party.
Laws shall be enacted by a majority of the legislature.
If the legislature has an even number of members, it shall select a chancellor to wield a tie-breaking vote.
The legislature shall select an administration by majority agreement of its members. If any three members of the caucus, or a majority of the members or the populace at large agree, the administration must be reselected. If no administration can be formed within thirty days, new general elections shall occur.
(Note that if the body votes using the australian preference method, it will be much more able to form administrations because runoffs will occur automatically, without discussions.
The single legislature makes the group far more accountable than a bicameral group.)
2002-Nov-30 8:37pm rgvandewalker
ans-ins-part
Append to This Answer
2002-Nov-30 8:37pm
(Answer) (Category) The Reality Sculptors "Faq-O-Matic" :
What is this FAQ-O-Matic thing?
The FAQ-O-Matic is a very cool piece of software written primarily by John Howell. You can get full technical details, as well as instructions on how to set up your own by clicking on the "Faq-O-Matic" link at the bottom of this (or just about any) FAQ-O-Matic page.

Basically, it's a set of programs that allow you to contribute your knowledge and info to the web pages before you. You've probably seen FAQs, or Frequently-Asked-Questions files around the Net. Many of them are out of date, because the maintainer has had to tend to their own life, and doesn't have much time to devote to maintaining the FAQ.

FAQ-O-Matic automates the maintenance, so that things can be kept up to date, and expanded upon by everyone. The working premise is that no one has lots of time to maintain a FAQ, but everyone has a little time. And no one knows all the answers, but everyone knows a few answers. FAQ-O-Matic leverages this principle, so that everyone may contribute what they know, when they have the time, and it takes care of the rest.

Feel free to browse through the FAQ, and when you find an area where you know something and want to contribute, select the "Add a new answer" link. It will lead you through a sign-up/login procedure, and once you have a password (it gets emailed to you, usually within minutes), you may add your answer. Afterwards, you can keep using that password to add things whenever you wish.

If you're a member of one or more of the Reality Sculptors lists, and see a FAQ popping up there all the time, then this would be an excellent place to answer the question, and post to the list that it's been answered here in the FAQ-O-Matic.

You may also create new areas, based on list discussions and interest. Please act responsibly, and don't abuse the service.

Thanks, and have fun!

-Pat


2000-Feb-02 6:05pm salsbury

ans-ins-part
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2000-Feb-02 6:05pm
(Answer) (Category) The Reality Sculptors "Faq-O-Matic" :
New Item
ans-ins-part
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2005-Jul-22 8:52pm
(Answer) (Category) The Reality Sculptors "Faq-O-Matic" :
New Item
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2005-Jul-22 8:52pm
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