No tips here other than talk, tell, share, ask and inspire.
Create the means of exchange, the Global DemoKratia
The means of exchange is simply a quantifier, a currency which for now we can call the DK (or Demi), and a system of storage and exchange. There are many systems currently available to exchange quantified value, from the electric money systems of the octopus card in Hong Kong to mobile phone based systems, and the more widely used Paypal and Visa.
All we need is diverse servers in different countries all storing the same data, some shutting down others opening up, this is to stop a denial of service attack, whereby those that may feel threatened by the new society send constant requests to the servers blocking the system.
Then we need a means to communicate with the system this can be done by computer, phone chip encrusted swipe card, or even paper and pen the most important thing is security, being able to properly identify the payer and receiver. We will get to that in a minute, first I want to discuss the reasons for a separate currency for initially I didn’t see the need.
Separate Currency the DK
The reason we need a separate currency is because the FP has to be paid equally to all so there needs to be a common base between all peoples no matter what currency they have entered or withdrawn from the DemoKratia (the monetary democracy exchange).
To enable people to put in (and withdraw) currencies with such differing values as the Indian Rupee or the UK pound we will need to have an currency exchange, and to have the DK floated so people can trade the currency using arbitrage (the making of money through discrepancies in the value of different currencies) to equalise differences between the currencies. This is important because if the exchange is fixed we could end up with most of the FS value coming from a few British and a great disproportion being withdrawn by many Somali’s. So once floated the wonderful people we know and love as foreign exchange traders will see differences between the value of the DK and the Pound, dollar, Euro etc and buy and sell accordingly changing the exchange rate. So then even if you used 150AUD to credit your Demokratia account with 100 DK to pay an Indian wholesaler 3000 Rps it would still be the same if you went 150AUD to 160USD then 100 DK then 3000 Rps, constant trade and the lure of arbitrage equalises different currencies. This also encourages flow through high value turnover markets fuelling the FS.
You may well say that this opens up the whole DemoKratia to manipulation by Forex traders, they crushed the Asian economies in the 1990’s and they could do the same to us. Well to get (buy) DK’s they essentially join the DemoKratia which means that they are treated the same, their real market transactions are siphoned at 8% and although there is no siphon from a deposit – an exchange of foreign currency for the DK – there is the full siphon of 8% on taking value out – exchanging DK’s for foreign currencies. The whole DemoKratia would benefit from such a massive attack to destabilise the currency. Imagine billions of say US dollars coming in and then leaving, the DemoKratia would keep 8% of the billions and this would bolster the sump so any crises could be passed through.
Arbiters would realise this and have an 8% spread.The DK sell price would be say 100 and the buy price would be 108, this won’t affect arbitrage and could add to volatility which adds to value turnover and more FS.
There is no reason to restrict the number of trading exchanges because they will all move DK’s through the DemoKratia and therefore be siphoned. Remember each person or entity (only people get the FP not companies or associations) must have an account so all trades pass through their account and are therefore siphoned. Actually the more the merrier, but there will need to be an official exchange to ensure their is enough foreign currency for withdrawals. The central DemoKratia will need to buy and sell foreign currencies to make up shortfalls, and this market will be open to everyone for the reasons stated above, and of course completely transparent. A small margin may need to be factored in on incoming and outgoing trade this is to ensure small but significant currency price movements don’t trap the DemoKratia short of one currency. Any surpluses above a normal trading buffer will be entered into the sump.
Now for the important bit – identification and security
We are a bit scared of others taking our value votes from us. We need to ensure that each person only uses their own value votes (DK’s) and no one can rip the entire system off.
First I will tell you the current transactional system only really works because of honesty, if we all deliberately tried to steal, cheat, forge signatures, hack hard-drives, or used every credit card number we have ever seen the current system would collapse. So the first and most important aspect is honesty, which I think Fluidity encourages, but we are not going to rely upon that only. Oh a quick reminder, cash and coin is the least secure means of exchange we have, you drop it and its gone, you can’t track it, stop it, and if it gets wet or burnt the value just vanishes. So the current electronic encrypted exchange systems are much more secure.
First we need to identify you, you’ve heard that before but it is important for I could pretend to be you and vote for you with all your money. The easiest way to do this particularly in the early stages of DemoKratia is to use the systems already in place for id. None are perfect, but the early days will be small and we will need to grow quickly, but we must also remember there is a FP to be garnered for every real person. So two forms of accepted id, a credit card, a drivers license, passport, birth certificate, plus a valid email address, and or telephone number, and of course your name must be supplied to open an account.
Overtime we can develop other forms like photo id, finger prints, eye id, or even DNA but these are all problematic and expensive to monitor. And I feel slightly invasive. The greatest trigger for possible cancellation of a “fake” person would be their activity within the DemoKratia, are they just withdrawing the FP and not transacting in DK, if so it raises the suspicion the “person” is created to exploit the system.
To ensure you access your account and you are the one paying from it, we will have a pin/password for all accounts and this will be encrypted from your input place, phone, ipad, computer, and decrypted by the server. Updating the payee (the person you are paying) in real time so they can see the payment go in and give you your goods. This doesn’t always work quickly so a storage and pay settle system will replace this at times of slow speeds. Simply this decreases your account within the device or app (for phones, and other mobile devices) and displays an approved or declined receipt and number for the vendor. Similar apps are already available.
What if the whole internet and fibre optic system crashes? Well if that happens we are all a bit screwed with or without a fluid society. In the future I see the DemoKratia putting up Satellites and buying access to cable systems in bulk – offering sim cards.
One thing I noticed in my research for the Fluid society was that the Demokratia for all intents and purposes is a not-for-profit organisation and any payment to it should be tax deductible in most countries. Therefore the FS is tax deductible, the FP would be a form of charity payment and treated differently in different countries but if left in DK I can’t see it could be considered taxable income. So in theory you can move the taxes you pay in your current plutocracy/dictatorship/one party state etc and move it to the global DemoKratia.
Buying common infrastructure
The purchase of common infrastructure will need to be done by associations of people that use the infrastructure, it isn’t as costly as you might expect.. The NBN (National Broadband Network) which is a high speed fibre optic network being built in Australia only costs approx $36 billion, I know that sounds a lot but there are over 10 million users of the internet in Australia with most paying upwards of $60 a month for access. So the $36 billion is only $3600 per user or the equivalent of 5 years service. In theory if you tacked on a bit for maintenance the whole system would be owned by its users in 6 years and afterward come at a tiny maintenance cost. The NBN is actually considered to be the largest infrastructure construction in Australia since the Snowy mountains hydroelectric project in the 1950′s. So when lots of people pool a little bit of money they can take control of their infrastructure.
In the interim we could use our current representing governments to do this on our behalf provided they are democratic. If we encourage them to buy, build and maintain our communal infrastructure and change our representative processes making them more liquid and inclusive we could transition to communal infrastructure quite quickly. I might add here that the Australian Federal Government plans to do the opposite, once the NBN is built they plan to sell it to private hands. Madness.
Buying natural monopolies
The buying of natural monopolies is different from infrastructure monopolies. Natural monopolies are not the product of human endeavour, but that of the earth. And currently they are in the hands of oligarchs and multinational corporations which feed money and power from the many to the few. So in order to establish a common ownership and liquid democracy over their governance we will need to purchase them from their current owners. Part of the FS will need to be used for this.
My original calculations on the FSFP were based on 30% being used to run current representative government services. This will not be necessary as health care, and infrastructure monopolies will be provided and maintained under other associations funded by the users. So as much as 20% (10% has been left spare for administration and servers etc.)of the FS can be used for natural monopoly purchases without unduly affecting the payment level or the sump.
Of course we cannot buy all the natural monopolies at once but over time we can accumulate more and more moving power away from the few and empowering the many.
The creation of banks and lending exchanges
We will need to create banks, or at least exchanges that do the primary job of banks. That of making idle money available to those with good ideas. Many that accumulate wealth are uninspired, they save because they have greater fear of change than desire for creation, or are just unimaginative. The idleness of wealth is a far greater moral tragedy than interest or profit. Banks and lending houses liquefy these savings, putting the value votes into the hands of people of action.
Preferably the exchanges in DemoKratia will be more open and person to person, more like micro-finance lenders who supply details of the borrower directly to the lender who can set, or negate interest as they see fit. As I have said before the onus should be on the borrower to offer interest rather then the lender demanding it. Also banks, or exchanges in DemoKratia will differ because you are in control of your money, your account within the demokratia is yours, not the banks. Current on-call bank accounts, where your income goes are actually owned by the bank, it is a loan which the bank agrees to pay back without notice. Therefore they will do what they want with this borrowed money, lending it, gambling with it, spending it. In demokratia your money is not automatically lent to others, you must chose to do so.
This may slow down the velocity of the system in comparison to the current system where money is constantly in the hands of banks, but it will add stability, and if you chose you can create and or use a bank based on the current model and lend all your money to such as soon as you receive it.
Will the current banks and payment system owners transfer money to the Global DemoKratia?
Currently for you to pay someone else money is taken from your account at ABC bank and paid to the sellers account at XYZ bank. Banks and payment systems like Visa, Mastercard, and Paypal have systems in place to make these transactions, and the receiving party must be known to the bank and fulfil certain requirements to be part of the intra-bank systems.
For the Global DemoKratia to receive wealth from the old system we need the banks to transfer money to our system, without us having to hold it in a bank account. Will they do this?
My thinking leads first to Paypal, banks and Visa will transfer to Paypal even though it is not a bank. So it is possible.
There is of course a way around this. Cash. We can withdraw cash from the banks and deposit it with the Global DemoKratia, it will need to be stored so it can be paid back for withdrawals Actually anything with value could be used like this, gold, shares, bonds etc. Buy a bond with AUD and deposit it with the GDK for the value in DK’s. So even if the banks block us there are plenty of other methods to move value from the old system to the new system.
What level of activity is desired? How busy should we be?
The Flow Siphon Flat Payment (FSFP) combined with the sump is intended to smooth out the boom and bust cycle by collecting money on the velocity at which it moves and paying it back at a constant level and storing the difference in the sump. The FSFP becomes a money supply regulator. But where do we set the level, how much velocity is to much, how much trade and value communication do we really want?
It must be remembered that there are many hubs of trade all interconnected but some move faster than others, and this changes over time. The FSFP works on a global scale making the overall action fluid. So some people will like a very slow pace, others a fast pace, and we change over time, particularly as we age we slow down.
Still this is not answering the question. And at this point I do not have one, in the early days there will need to be much tweaking of the payment to find a nice level of activity, a goldilocks level, not to fast, lot to slow.
We will need indicators of speed and fulfilment to gauge this level of equilibrium. Currently we use inflation, unemployment and GDP figures to judge the speed of the economy, and the effectiveness of monetary and fiscal policy which are used to regulate this. All these are lousy indicators of human fulfilment, integration and progress. And the regulators; raising and lowering interest rates, quantitative easing, budget deficits and surpluses do more harm than good.
I suggest we look at total value transactions through the GDK and a contentment indicator, a bit like Bhutan’s Gross National Happiness indicator. Although I loathe utilitarian indicators, and surveys of peoples happiness are always highly subjective and relative to the people around them and how happy I was yesterday.
So what could we look at to judge people’s contentment and humanities progress and integration with our planet?
We could look at death rates, content people live longer, we could look at rates of violence, content people are less violent. We could look at levels of cortisoids in our bloodstream to gauge stress levels, content people aren’t stressed. This I like for it is quantitative, and stress is a great indicator of societal dysfunction. We could look at extinction rates of other species to gauge our entwinement with the Earth. All these things and many more like the number of wars, inequality, environmental damage, and surveys of peoples contentment can be used to find a good level of trade and value communication and thus payment.
Or simply we could just set an arbitrary payment and let things work them selves out. If the sump runs dry after 20 years we should lower the payment, and if it is still increasing after 20 years we should increase the payment. This is my preferred option for it fits with Fluidity.
Next we will need to create the exile prison and some form of court.
So where do we put this place of exile? I don’t like the idea of using prisons as they are harsh small and confined. We need an island, my first thought is the Pitcairn islands as they are inhospitable and a long way from anywhere (they are in the southern pacific ocean hundreds of kilometres from anything) but, they are so inhospitable the exiles will starve to death. Actually it shouldn’t be to difficult to find an under populated island, and in the early days there won’t be many exiles anyway so I’ll leave this for someone else.
As for the judiciary, I think a jury of your peers is the only way a fluid society could judge another’s guilt, but should the accused and the accuser/s use advocates? I think in order to negate differences in the oratory abilities of the accused and accuser – for some reason psychopaths are good at rational argument (it could be the lack of emotion required) – I think advocates should be used. But both will be appointed at random by the court. The court of course will need some funding which will come from the Flow Siphon approx 1-2% should suffice (part of the 10% I mentioned earlier), and jurors and advocates compensated for their time. Remember the laws are few and this is not a civil court so it should not be that busy.
I think for disagreements that cannot be sorted out by anagogical argument other advice units will establish themselves, people have always gone to the wise and trusted to resolve disputes and they still will.
How quick can it grow?
Tell your friends. Facebook grew from 1 member in Dec 2004 to 845 million in Feb 2012, so very quickly. But if there are 845 million people all exchanging through the DemoKratia all creating a Fluid society this will get attention from those that currently have power.
Now when we have 845 million members and trillions of DK’s moving around the demokratia it is going to attract attention. Those who currently rule the world may not like their power devolving from beneath them, they may try and stop us. So what are the most likely ways they will do this:
I expect all these things to occur, so how do we fight them?
The first is probably the easiest as most people who own infrastructure and natural monopolies are greedy, they will part with their assets for money, they are also run by bureaucrats and technocrats who live in bubbles and are short-sighted, easy pickings for the long thinker with cash. I also propose getting a foothold in natural monopolies early so we have access to what we require before the size and influence of the DemoKratia is on their radar. Later we will freeze out those that don’t comply, remember they don’t feed us they live of our consumption our labour and our ideas, if we move this away they starve. So if we move the teat the babies will follow. We should be able to get them to join the demokratia and give up their monopolies.
Blocking us from the means of communication, the telephony, satellite and fibre optic networks is likely, this was done to Wikileaks. They have survived by devolving, which is the essence of fluidity, many small and changing servers all with the same data, so in order to block access the whole system, which the old order also relies upon, will need to be shut down. I can’t see this happening for long. As I have stated before we will need many small servers constantly changing and holding the same information, this will be expensive and the cost will need to come from the FS, approx 1-5% (again from that 10% mentioned earlier). So a game of cat and mouse will be played until those in power realise they are best to join for that is where power now lays.
Inciting fear in the fluid society, is the first along with saying it will never work and it is run by crooks, tactic I can see them using. It is the most common tool of corporate and political elites, they are expert at it and have been very effective in holding a passive populous by their short and curlies. I do think members of the DemoKratia, especially early members will be quite strong, quite motivated, and quite self assured. They will not easily be manipulated by lies. But the majority of people could be.
I suggest we do not get into debate with those that lie, we do not acknowledge their existence, we do not give them strength. We state our case plainly and from a position of thoughtful authority, we answer intelligent and thoughtful queries, and make fun of puppeteers. This will be our greatest battle, the battle for minds against lies, our success or failure will depend upon its outcome. I cannot promise you success all I can do is will you to strength, to listen to your inner voice, follow your intuition and balance it with reason. If humanity is to progress, if humanity should progress, we will win this battle.
Arresting people works with fear, it will be impossible for the old order to function if they imprison millions of people, and they will not notice the threat until there are millions of members. So they will arrest a few to instil fear in the rest. Don’t put up with it, resist at every opportunity. Never comply with such horrid tactics. Luckily there are no real leaders of DemoKratia so there is no one or few people to arrest or influence, this is the greatest strength of a fluid society.
There will be battles, I hope there is not, but I expect some to come, but we will have the most liquid form of organisation which is the most difficult to attack. Rigidity crumbles, fluidity morphs, moves and reforms. Viva FSFP, Viva DemoKratia, Viva Fluidity!
The phases of implementation
We pay back all the FS less a small server and maintenance cost. It will be lower than $22,000pa and will move with the amount of value turnover.
This is the time to spread the word and work out kinks in the system.
Phase 2 – between 1 million and 10 million members
We pool 10% of the FS for natural monopoly purchases and liquid democracy creation, and the creation of the judiciary. The maintenance of the mines and distribution will be paid for by those who use the resources (buy it). Still the FP is fluctuating and the HCS (Health Care Siphon) has not been switched on.
At this time I expect many small exchanges and markets to form within the demokratia, and ways of using the demokratia for direct purchases. Instead of cash at your local cafe, bar or grocer you could purchase chips or tokens from your DK account and use them over the night, day or even a week. Cashing in the left overs at the end of your purchasing. This enables many small transactions in a short period without having to utilise the electronic network.
Phase 3 – 20 to 50 million members
When the FP reaches $22,000 pa (this is the current AUD equivalent as this will be the DK starting point) the sump will be switched on and the FP set, and tweaked with information about integration and contentment. The sump will collect the overload from a hyperactive economy and be used to keep the FP stable in slow times.
After some time – to build the sump, and some tweaking on the FP, the HCS siphon will be switched on and a set amount will be used from the siphon 10% for justice, monopoly purchases and server and satellite purchase and maintenance.
This phase is also when I expect the DemoKratia to come under attack from those in power, it will be the most fragile and exciting time.
Phase 4 – 500 million to more than a billion
As more infrastructure, more associations and the DemoKratia develops the 10% will be phased down to 1 or 2% for server maintenance and justice. The FP can then be increased to $24,000 and perhaps more depending upon the sump and analyses of velocity, integration and contentment.
Something completely unpredictable and wondrous occurs. Fluidity is always to be a process to a new world, it will be the catalyst for something we cannot yet imagine and this final phase may cover generations.
What’s the time frame?
If we use the growth of Facebook as a guide, they went from nothing in 2002 to 5.5 million member in 2005 and 845 million in 2012, so phase 1 will last about 3 years, perhaps less, phase 2 is where we will get external attention and grow very quickly but also start hitting hurdles, low barriers and about 2 years, high hurdles and it could take 10 years floating into phase 3.
Phases 4 will happen progressively over 5 to 10 years. And phase 5 who knows, not I.
A couple of last questions
When will people be able to travel across borders?
I stated in Fluid Society, there should be NO reason to keep people out or force people to join a nation, guild, or state for habitation. But we currently have nations, states and border restrictions. And in the past walls and guns have been used to keep people in as much as out. Think Berlin wall, Palestine Wall, and refugees are kept in as much as out.
In the early days we will need to play by the old rules, have passports and visa’s. The devolution of nation states is one way to move forward, but this will be haphazard, forcing mass migrations from those states that are more strict to those that are devolving.
I like the idea of buying an island, one other than the exile island, declaring it as a nation with millions of ex-pats with passports issued by the Global DemoKratia and encouraging other nations to accept these passports, and therefore the transit of our citizens.
This problem is vexing. And could cause the territorial conflicts I have written of previously in Fluid Society.
You see, even when you buy land you don’t get full rights to it. It is limited to what the crown, state, or nation allows. Even in bastardised representative democracies majority rules, so we can use this power to force old nations to recognise the citizens of DemoKratia as legitimate and therefore to open their borders to us.
This is the first and, as far as I can see, only instance in the evolution of the fluid society we will need to take old school political action. We must make a party, elect reps, and change policy. We must devolve the nation state!
How to get around current regulations
Many associations and markets within the DemoKratia will not comply with national regulations, they will be illegal. Not immoral, not wrong but still illegal for they don’t comply with the rules of plutocrats.
The best way to get around regulations is to not attract attention to your activities and fluidity is perfect for this, it has many small players rather than a few large ones. Just do what you think best, way up whom you affect thoughtfully and then go about your business. And don’t pay the fines, don’t go to gaol, and don’t comply with their demands. Normality breeds acceptance, if your actions look like those of a thoughtful human other people will ignore them. And authorities only act on the complaints of our fellows.
If need be we will locate our activities in compliant countries, or quietly go about our business not attracting attention, but eventually we will get caught. We will need to fight court battles on moral grounds, and we will need to stand together.
These minor battles are just part of the game of change, and as more people join less power can be used against us.
There will always be those outside DemoKratia, are they a threat?
Of course some will live their own way, they will be nomads, they will wander the steppes of Asia, lay on the beaches on the Pacific islands, idle in offices of Wall Street only skipping into DemoKratia when they need it or perhaps never at all. This is not a problem, this is actually part of fluidity, having those that are not part of the system. And I expect many if not all people will float in and out of their nations, cultures and DemoKratia particularly in the early days, multiple citizenship will be common. This adds to the strength of a fluid society. You see the aim is not Global DemoKratia for all but fluidity, DemoKratia is just a mode to fluidity.
What if the 1% who have all the wealth don’t join, won’t that mean we won’t collect enough money to make the FP?
I said before we are the teat of their power, they rely on us not us on them. The real wealth our natural wealth, our labour, time and ideas flow up not down. They will follow the teat. It will take some time but I expect the gamblers and the arbiters to come early for they will see a chance to make money with a new currency and mass movements of money. The merchants will be next because we will only buy from those in the DemoKratia for it saves us money (8% is taken on all withdrawals) and the merchants will drag in the manufacturers and they will drag in the holders of natural resources.
Markets attract the wealthy. The promise of new wealth excites the greedy and for every transaction they and we make the DemoKratia will be supported. The markets will be lubricated and stabilised. Therefore the most attractive markets will be those within the DemoKratia. Don’t forget there is no regulation, no enforced rules just those of the thoughtful buyer, what could be more attractive to a greedy merchant.
David J Campbell