On the other hand

October 1, 2010

I suppose I should have read the next page before my last post:

Later (in Number 58) he urges the, as we know valid, reason for relatively small legislative assemblies: “the greater the number composing them may be, the fewer will be the men who will in fact direct their proceedings.” Moreover, the greater the size of the assembly, the more it will “partake of the infirmities incident to collective meetings of the people.” … With large bodies of representatives, “The countenance of the government may become more democratic, but the soul that animates it will be more oligarchic.”

I didn’t have time in my last post to expand on the fact that a much larger House of Representatives would need drastically different rules to operate effectively, and frankly I’m not sure what form those rules should take. As the number of people in a group grows the number of possible relationships between them grows as the square, so some scheme is needed to reduce the interactions. (This is, in fact, the reason we have a representative democracy instead of direct democracy.) If you don’t have explicit rules to deal with this problem, you’ll end up with de facto rules that are unacknowledged and therefore prone to underhand manipulation.

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2 Responses to “On the other hand”

  1. Jad Says:

    Ha! And I should have read all your posts before commenting. Rather than attempting to scale up a republican structure to somehow manage 300 million people. I would prefer to see scaling down the idea of representation to the individual. I am the perfect representative of my interests and can peacefully interact with other self-representing people. Problem solved.

  2. Rachelle Says:

    love your thinking, have you thought of running?


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