|Bringing good sense, good humor, and respect back to the public square |
|Primary Goals |
- Organize a Discussion Society to bring about constructive civic discourse among the people of the Rogue Valley through a network of live, face-to face, small group discussions.
- Create an online, regional knowledge base organized by the societal, cultural, economic, and state topics to be studied, discussed, and debated by the Discussion Society.
- Reduce the power of political parties by giving citizens the ability to express their will on important policy matters through democratic public debate.
|Key Program Features |
- The Society is a demos: a one person-one vote democracy. There are no groups within the demos. Members advocate for their points of view as individuals.
- All interaction among the Society would be in-person. There would be no chat rooms or discussion forums in the knowledge base, nor links to social media.
- A goal of the discussions would be achieving mutual understanding among participants and not the changing of minds. The give and take should be respectful, impersonal, and focused on facts - an exercise in deliberative democracy.
|a Rogue Valley in-person discussion society combined with an online, regional knowledge base |
| The Discussion Society |
the human arts to study, discuss, vote
|The Knowledge Base |
the technical crafts to collect, store, report
| || |
|It is proposed that Rogue Valley residents from all backgrounds and points of view come together through a network of small conversation groups to discuss public policy matters and that the results of their discourse be reported out publically for the benefit of the public and public officials. |
|The essential process would be: |
- Every twelve weeks a new Discussion Society would form and select a slate of twelve discussion topics.
- The Knowledge Base would be organized to provide online support for the topics.
- Society members would self-study the topics week-by-week and would attend Conversation Sit-downs to discuss them followed by After Parties to socialize.
- Society members would vote anonymously on the topics using ranked voting.
|Example Discussion Topics |
|Who Dies? What laws will govern auto-driven vehicles in accidents when making qualitative decisions on human life? ||Trust, but verify: Can there be gun control without gun laws? ||Dancing with A.I. and Robotics: How will people fare in a post-human social order? |
|The New Pariahs: Has the DUI stigma unfairly created a shunned group? ||Pick and Choose: Should immigration weigh skills or assets higher than family? ||Copy and paste Grandma: Should technology to transfer human consciousness be allowed? |
|Wildfires and logging: Would increased logging reduce wildfires without causing environmental harm? ||The Facts of Life: How should we understand economic and quality of life indicators? ||Money for nothing: How will people make a living in a jobless future? |
|Don't fence me in: What reforms are needed in the federal land management system? ||Cutting out the middleman: Does the Electoral College need reform? ||Bring out your dead: Would the Rogue Valley be able to deal with a high mortality outbreak of an infectious disease? || |
| ||The Network |
|Stick is a network of Conversation Sit-downs/After Parties held at public locations throughout the valley connected and supported by the Knowledge Base. |
- posts the schedules and locations of the conversation sit-downs
- provides self-study materials and guides
- collects subject-related ideas from the sit-downs
- enrolls Society members and sit-down locations
| ||The Knowledge Base |
|The Knowledge Base is a browsable and searchable online relational database that stores information on topics related to the Society, Economy, Culture, and State of the Rogue Valley. |
- posts discussion and topic materials selected by local knowledge experts
- provides members with home pages to organize their study materials and vote on the discussion topics
- uses the open knowledge format with MLA citation style used for sourcing
|Knowledge Base Index |
|Society ||Economy ||Culture ||State |
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