All the evils in our society can be traced in large part to this. A greater
ratio can enable us to realize our greatest potentials in our society.
People feel dis-empowered politically. Voters don't know who or what
they are voting for. As a result, they don't vote. Republican Democracy
doesn't really exist. Crime, domestic violence, unemployment, oppressive
laws, ecological problems, low quality education and all kinds of social,
economic and emotional problems that we have today can be traced to
the dehumanizing effects of an inadequate ratio of representation.
Our founding fathers discussed this problem of the ratio of representation
at great length in the first Constitutional Congress and agreed that one
elected representative for every 40,000 citizens was the correct ratio of
representation at the national level for the House of Representatives. The current
ratio of representation is 1 to 600,000. This does not and cannot work.
They composed an article to be added to the U.S. Constitution to this effect
so that it would be the law. But unfortunately this article was not ratified by
the states. So the structural article on the ratio of representation designed to ensure
that the Bill of Rights would be viable and respected did not become law. As a result
population expansion has diluted the principle of representative democracy to the
point that most people no longer vote. Voting, especially in national elections,
has become a meaningless act.
The corruption of the national United States government is so bad that the
citizens who still care are outraged and no longer participate.
The best solution to the problem of the ratio of representation at the national
level my not be to have 10 times as many Congress persons, although having
5000 Congresspersons would be much, much better than the 500 that we have now.
With 5000 members of Congress, this institution would much more adequately
represent the people – us.
The same problem of the ratio of representation also exists at the state and local
levels. In Los Angeles county, for example, one supervisor represents over a
million voters. When one gets elected, they are in for life because no one can
unseat them. They are called the five Kings.
And the greatest corruption at the local level is electing city council
people at large. Without election districts at the village or city level voters
cannot control even their local government elected representatives.
The best solution to the ratio of representation for all levels of government:
national, state, county and village is to have an elected Neighborhood Representative
for each 1000 people – who is a paid full time neighborhood representative.
This elected person can totally re-humanize and educate our society. This
simple structural reform can make our republican democracy actually work for
everyone and empower rebirth of our country. Each Neighborhood Representative
(NR) would hold a monthly meeting for the neighborhood constituents and publish
a monthly newsletter. Citizens who don't make the monthly meeting can
contact the N.R. personally so that their views and good ideas are voiced.
The results of the neighborhood meeting can be expressed at a district council
meeting of NRs at a monthly meeting in each political district: for city, county,
state and national.
There will be a monthly meeting of NRs in each city council district with their
council person. There will be a meeting of NRs in each county's supervisoral district
with their county supervisor. There will be a monthly meeting in each state
assembly district for NRs to meet with their assembly person.
And a meeting of NRs in each congressional district with their congressperson.
This creates a possibility for a monthly cycle of communication between all
citizens and all of our elected officials – council person, supervisor, assembly
person and congressperson – on any issue or idea. Republican democracy can
actually work and be a satisfying experience for everyone.
This means that the neighborhood representative has to attend 5 basic
meetings per month: one in the neighborhood and one in each of the political districts.
In some states, voting precincts are the perfect size of 500 to 1000 registered voters each and can be the already existing basis for defining a neighborhood. Having an elected Precinct Representative would be a wonderful new innovation in American Democracy and would enable Republican Democracy to actually work.
To have a full-time paid NR will cost only $10 per month per voter. Ten dollars per month from 1000 people creates a $10,000 per month budget for each of our elected NRs. This is a small price to pay to resurrect real government of the people, by the people and for the people.
It would be nice if existing governments would build the cost of NRs into their budgets, but it may be unlikely to expect a corrupt government to reform itself.
Instead, a possible approach may be to have NRs at large to make it easier for NRs to find 1000 paying constituents who contribute voluntarily. This way pioneering NRs can get support from family, friends, colleagues and anyone anywhere who would like democracy to work better.
An NR at large means they can be elected by anyone in their county or the world, but they will develop their primary political relationship with their local city council person, county supervisor, assemblyman and congressman. However, their ideas and political work may benefit everyone in the world economically, socially, spiritually and culturally.
The NR's job will be part-time until a full 1000 or perhaps 500 constituents are achieved. Some NRs may be able to go full time with just 500 supporters.
All signers of an NR's petition can campaign and work to get other signers until the full support is achieved. An NR can lecture at political and civic clubs and political science classes at colleges to recruit other NRs.
We need to get one NR functioning before we can get two. And two before three, etc. Then it is only a matter of time until an NR becomes the council person, the supervisor, the assembly person and the congressperson. When there are more NRs in higher office, then the idea of Neighborhood Representatives will become normal nationally and then universally. At this point the at large concept will dissolve into clearly defined neighborhoods like voting precincts. It can become a normal part of every official election.
In order to re-humanize our society and our government, we have to have a monthly Town Meeting available to every person. Real people expressing themselves politically, socially, economically and spiritually is a beautiful thing. If you could see 1000 people meeting in free expression, you would be amazed at the beautiful people and intelligent people and the virtue and richness of such expression. We might also be amazed at the ignorance and depravity of some people. But the power of a monthly Town Meeting can educate, transform, inspire and enrich all participants.
Monthly Town Meetings can also include brief performances by the best musicians in the neighborhood. Monthly Town Meetings can be warm human experiences. They can become our favorite social activity of the month.
We just have to be intelligent enough and responsible enough to organize them and give continuity year after year to our monthly grass roots Town Meetings. After we do this, we may also desire to have small weekly support groups of 10 or 20 persons that are devoted to sharing our ideas and feelings. This kind of community experience empowers people and tends to make them wise and loving.
When Neighborhood Representation becomes universal, we can have a House of Representatives in the United Nations and worldwide Republican Democracy will be a reality.
Heaven on Earth starts with you. You have to be an intelligent and responsible citizen. We cannot have government of the people, by the people and for the people without the people.
You are the people!
We have all the great ideas already circulating in books, in small organizations and in the minds of thousands of geniuses. Neighborhood Representation has the structure and power to get the great ideas distributed to everyone and put into action.
This simple petition can be used by any person desiring to become an NR. Anyone in the country or anywhere in the world can sign it. Signers have to renew their commitment each year until Neighborhood Representation becomes an established reality. We create 1 NR, then 2 NRs, then 10 NRs, then 100 Neighborhood Representatives. Soon it can be self-generating.