Solution was Anticipated by, and Desirable to the Founders, but Infeasible at that Time
“[A legislature]… should be an exact portrait, in miniature, of the people at large, as it should feel, reason and act like them” (John Adams, 1776)
“The People were, in fact, the fountain of all power, and by resorting to them, all difficulties were got over. They could alter constitutions as they pleased.” (James Madison, 1787)
“The basis of our political systems is the right of the people to make and to alter their constitutions of government.” (George Washington, 1796)
“All power is originally in the People and should be exercised by them in person, if that could be done with convenience, or even with little difficulty.” (James Wilson 1804)
It all depends on who you trust for the final say and the oversight of our Government:
535 professional Congressional politicians,
desperate to secure financing and win reelection,
OR all the People?
Starting in 1898 in South Dakota, about half the States have already chosen to trust the People; none have changed their mind! Including City and County Initiatives, about 70% of the People already vote on initiatives at Federal Elections.
This very successful Solution to the Problem was discovered early in history.
The Citizens themselves could propose solutions to difficult problems. A very large grand jury decided if each proposed solution was worthy of consideration by all Citizens. When one was found, the jury presented it to a meeting of all Citizens, who considered it and finally voted on it. This game-changer process is fast enough to clear the backlog of problems and keep up with the speed of Oligarchy mischief. It is a Solution enabling multiple problems that are beyond Congressional capability, to be solved concurrently over just a few years.
The ancient Athenian city-state invented this system: it was a total gamechanger. Athenian citizens called it democracy. It proved so successful that in 186 years Athenian culture became the foundation of all Western Civilizations. New England town halls adapted it, but no one believed that all the people could communicate in a larger community.
Today, instant Internet communications, social media, and air travel are total gamechangers! The people can benefit from direct democracy in a large nation for the first time in history.
The Athenian Solution is feasible today. If the ancient Athenian citizens could do it 2,500 years ago, we can surely do it today! Even if with a little difficulty.
A Democratic Republic is essential for governance of the United States. But we have the wisdom and knowledge of all our Citizens, including all in government, to make a few profoundly difficult decisions beyond the capability of our Government. The People have the right and duty to alter our Constitution; we should and can adapt the Athenian model to manage these profound decisions.
Athenian citizens called a proposed solution “probouleumata”; we call it a Direct Initiative. Athenian voters called their grand jury the “Council of 500”; we call it the “Initiatives Qualifying Assembly” or (IQA). Public debate we call free speech and freedom of the press. Voting by all the people we call Federal Elections. The People voting on Direct Initiatives is Direct Democracy; it emulates congress voting the People’s instructions.
The Solution ensures that no Government entity is involved or can interfere. The system is incorruptible, with many safeguards including a repeal safeguard. The IQA is well designed and large enough to manage itself and make wise decisions. Operations are one week each month; costs are modest. Funding is an entitlement of the People. The IQA is an exact portrait (a mirror) of the People, assuring relevant initiatives and saving voters’ time. The Oligarchs cannot bribe because the Grand Jury is too large a risk, strongly protected from tampering; penalties penetrate corporate shields and include mandatory jail. The initiative system provides the cure for Citizen frustration. Long-term issues can be addressed because no one is running for election.
Our republican form of government will continue unabated, except that the People will have the on-going power of direct democracy to correct it when Government becomes misrepresentative, ineffective, or corrupt. It continues our United States’ great experiment in government, perhaps even reestablishing our world leadership that Oligarchy destroys.