InstaGov is the working name for a possible solution to the problem of government, and more specifically as a solution to the flaws which have become apparent in the American system of government due to their carefully-targeted exploitation by the Bush II administration. It can be thought of as "government for anti-authoritarians", utilizing the power of cooperative action. It can work either as a supplement to an existing system of government or theoretically as a replacement, though a great deal more real-world testing will be needed first.
It is also the name of the software to be written for implementing the idea. The software will be open source and freely available.
- /introduction — why we need this (longish)
- /components — the essential ingredients (shorter and more digestible)
- cooperative action: one of the major tools which can be harnessed without needing any special/official authority
- structured debate: a set of rules for cooperatively determining whether an assertion is reasonable or not
- I have obtained the domain name instagov.com, mainly for the purpose of securing the name "InstaGov" for this project; I picture this as another gateway into Issuepedia but with the emphasis on InstaGov's functions. (Issuepedia's front page should probably be reworked as well, when this happens.)
- Software design details are being posted at HTYP.
- change.org has implemented the idea of people posting ideas and other people voting for them, but the voting is unary (one vote/abstain per idea) and there are no options to classify ideas or combine similar ideas. Note that a very similar system has been used at change.gov.
- empowerment clubs: "I propose a type of regular meeting which welcomes both atheists and people of faith, concentrates on empowering and uplifting people, and leaves all of the baggage behind."
- Futarchy by Robin Hanson: another proposal for a new tool for governance which could fit within pretty much any existing form of government: "In futarchy, democracy would continue to say what we want, but betting markets would now say how to get it. That is, elected representatives would formally define and manage an after-the-fact measurement of national welfare, while market speculators would say which policies they expect to raise national welfare."
- Freetown Christiania is a semi-autonomous community in Copenhagen, Denmark consisting of about 85 acres (a formerly-abandoned military base) and 850 citizens; an example of non-authoritarian government working cooperatively with existing government. I find it especially interesting that their gang problems seemed to begin when the authorities disallowed their open marijuana trade (also the bit about cooperating with the police to get rid of the hard drug users, and the police reportedly violated their promise and went after the marijuana networks as well). --Woozle 17:58, 12 August 2008 (EDT)
- Home Rule Globally: a badly-formatted and somewhat turgid site which discusses many of the same ideas put forth here ("humans can do away with the occasion for military hostilities") as well as a lot of fuzzy, poorly-supported, and/or irrelevant rambling. --Woozle 18:14, 16 August 2008 (EDT)
- PollDaddy: similar to the core "voting" feature of InstaGov, but without certain abilities (quick list, not necessarily complete):
- category management, with feeds
- range voting instead of multiple choice
- voter verification
- tracking of user votes by user
- Superstruct: Rook Parliament: some examination of the issues involved with unsupervised network voting
- Wikocracy was an attempt at defining government using only a wiki; it failed for a number of reasons, but we can learn from its mistakes.
- MediaWiki users can easily set up informal polls, but without the flexibility and analysis planned for InstaGov. An example: conservapedia:User:CPAdmin1/Polls
Earlier versions of the idea (and different angles on the problem):
- citizen government: a solution without a method
- backup government: earlier incarnation of that idea
- Talk:2007-05-31 Repudiation, Not Impeachment: essay discussing some relevant ideas
- User:Woozle/United Members of Civilization: another early incarnation
- User:Woozle/United Members of Civilization/Government is broken: essay with a metaphorical view of the current situation, but no particulars
- internet governance: using the internet as a tool for running a government
- Issuepedia:Dispute Resolution Technology