Posts Tagged ‘ Politics ’

Do We Need A New Political Party For The Internet?

The SOPA-PIPA and ACTA debacles are a clear indicator that our elected officials in both the Democratic and Republican parties are not merely ignorant of their civic duties, but corrupt as well.  Clearly the influence of powerful lobbying groups’ dollars resonated more than destroying the keystone of our modern freedom of speech and publication – the internet.

In private discussion with my college political professor back in the day he was of the opinion at the time, after having tried influencing things as an independent, that it was better to work within one or the other political parties – to make the most impact, and if need-be change them from within.  However, after observing several political grass root events in both parties over the years (I’m a registered Republican btw – but very disappointed with the party) – the prospect of working with and attempting to influence the people currently in positions of leadership in either party is distasteful.  I would rather try to argue with a rabid pit-bull – than spend time with these dogmatic people.  When people can’t find common ground there is no way to convince them to compromise on any issue for the greater good.

Instead I am thinking it would be better just to scrap support for either party, and instead form a new party based upon a more moderate/centrist view of things.  Ideally this party should align with the views of the 14 million Americans who are currently awake – with their antenna fully extended and listening.

What would the platform of such a party look like?  Here is my attempt:

Internet Party Platform (IP Platform)

1.  Civic responsibility is everyone’s responsibility; the population must educate themselves and make such education available (e.g. get out the vote, email/phone campaigns) on the issues and watch and respond to threats to our basic liberties.  The response to SOPA-PIPA tells me that this is possible, if not happening already.   “All tyranny needs to gain a foothold is for people of good conscience to remain silent.” – Thomas Jefferson.  We have been silent for too long.

2.  Revolutionary Republicanism – the view that limiting corruption and greed is of utmost importance.  Virtue of our elected leaders must be restored through strict limits on monetary compensation and ‘donations’ from all parties.  Get the influence of money OUT of government.  The population has a right and a duty to remove from office by legally scheduled election and recall election those elected officials who are shown to be abusing their power to the detriment of society.  Make it so only virtuous women and men seek public office in the spirit of ensuring, ” rich and poor, magistrates and subjects, officers and people, masters and servants, the first citizen and the last, are equally subject to the laws”, to quote John Adams.

3.  The internet and the vast majority of people who spend their daily lives inhabiting, growing ‘micro’ economies in, communicating and publishing words, arts and music in, and increasing the public good through – is the heart blood of this country and the world today.  We recognize that the communications and computer technology that makes up the internet is disruptive of the previous business and political order.  We pledge to make this revolutionary transition peaceful and respectful of everyone’s human rights and civil liberties.

4.  We do not apologize to previous generations and interests for change –  “no society can make a perpetual constitution or even a perpetual law. The earth belongs always to the living generation.”  We will fight all attempts to stop useful public progress in the interests of private financial gain in perpetuity.  To that end we will fight to limit the length of time the assignment of monopoly (e.g. copyright)  can be applied – so that real public good within the same generation comes from invention – and America can remain a leader in innovation.

That’s about all I can think of that most people would agree upon.  Anything else would start the pendulum swinging too far right or left.  I also tried to make it general enough to cover most situations that cause the most problems – the 80/20 rule would apply – the idea here being you’ll never be able to clean up everything, but if you focus on the top 20% of issues – you’ll impact 80% of the things that effect people.  Given the core values expressed here – I think taking action on them would have the most good.

Then another thought occurred to me…

Does it even make sense to think in terms of nation-states and political boundaries in a medium that by design contains no such distinctions?  It is a great contradiction.  To ensure the continued unlimited communications medium across the world, you must play the sovereign’s game within the boundaries of the state.  But what’s to stop an association of parties with the same platform from springing up all over the world?  Think about it – helping each other in many nations to focus upon the internet problems that we are all impacted by as a community.  I would argue this is happening already in an adhoc manner – but aside from the reactive Anonymous and Occupy movements – there has not been a consistent platform put forward that is proactive.  What I’ve seen so far is a statement that there is a problem, and a list of 50,000 divergent views on how to fix it.  Maybe we just need to start with some simple values, like these here, and act upon them to get to the variegated state we desire?  Maybe we already are, and I’ve not been paying attention?