Commoditized Votes and Vote Contracts

This article covers a proposed policy initiative which would more fully merge a state’s political and economic systems, bringing increased efficiency to the state’s overall political economy, as well as increasing transparency and the well being of citizens.

Steps:

  1. Federally guarantee enforcement and support of optionally made decisions by the States in favor of optional Vote Transparency initiatives.
  2. Optional Vote Transparency initiatives would allow voters to check a box on vote ballots which would cause the reporting state to publish an official voting record for the person and time. Today, people can say, “I voted for X,” but it is purely on trust. This would allow an official State record to back the claim. Optional Vote Transparency initiatives could also allow for elimination of the monopoly on State vote reporting.
  3. Federally recognize and legalize Vote Contracts, which are contracts on the trading of votes. Prohibit regulation of these contracts.
  4. States pass through Optional Vote Transparency initiatives on an individual basis, under the security of the guarantees of the federal government.

Commoditized votes would allows political transactions to increase in efficiency. Rather than voting person X in to office and there being some small chance that person X can get policy Y passed,  which benefits the constituents by some amount, constituents could get welfare simply by virtue of voting for person X, without the need of the development of funds in the government itself or any form of policy change; they would be negotiated as a payout for the actual vote. This would eliminate constituent welfare risk and also reduce certain motives to grow the size of the state.

Today, politicians advertise on TV, radio and more, but as far as I can tell, it obviously is the case that these methods are inefficient ways to secure votes compared to real contracts. When advertising, political consultants must make forecasts of effects, but these forecasts are subject to risk and variance. Contracts would eliminate risk and create a semblance of a guaranteed state of affairs. Furthermore, contracts can guarantee not only vote turnout but also vote direction. People could be paid to not vote or to vote some way and so forth.

These policies would combat fraud by publishing voter votes. People who’s votes appear manipulated, or who accidentally cast an incorrect vote, could have some appeal window. People who didn’t vote and yet their votes show up and so on would be flagrant signs of abuse, signs which are currently being missed.

The policy is roughly formulated for the American system, but can be adapted in principal to any system. In fact, in some systems the commoditized vote represents a more efficient and justified state-issued currency. The state has no real monopoly on currency and trying to create one results in inefficiency, but the state-issued vote-currency is note a currency in the traditional sense. It can be seen as a contract with the state, in which case it is the natural purview of the state to maintain a monopoly on the thing. In fact, I would propose that fiat currency is not currency at all in the traditional sense, but is a poorly understood contract with the state.

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