It seems very similar in essence to our Jersey way of managing our democracy. By the way we do not have a presidential democracy. We have a Parliamentary Democracy. This means we vote for all our members of the states of Jersey, but the Chief Minister is voted for by the elected candidates.
If we had we had a Presidential Democracy, (where the public vote for this person) we would have to give them more powers than we are prepared to! Also there would be a humungous cost involved in having another election. This would probably mean we would have to have corporate sponsorship to fund it, and then you dont get a democracy. We are Jersey, It takes four Scotsman to achive the type of pragmatism of a Jersey Farmer!
In a similar way as the Wall St democratic demonstration, we have 'departments'. So there is a minister and comittee in charge of each section of the social provision. In the Wall St model, this is the food department, medical department, social welfare department, book department, and media department.
This is pretty much the model of identifying the needs of the particular community and creating a structure of services to meet the needs of its participants. I assume there is a lot of 'swapping' rather than using cash. If there is a system of 'value storage', then perhaps it would be fun to use some kind of token system. Coke/Pepsi bottle tops may be as good as anything! So long as you paint the inside with an 'official paint' like hammerite, in different colours, in a central 'treasury department' you then have a currency.
You only need a 'currency' to 'buy' goods and services outside your community really. I would consider that the very concept of allowing people to purchase your 'coins' in order that they are supporting your 'economy of purpose and intent in this demonstration' is sufficient justification for willing members of the wider community to exchange 'coin of the realm' for your bottle tops, so that you can legitimately purchase bagels and muffins, and food to sustain your demonstration.
I would suggest there needs an authentication of the purchase of your bottle tops in a picture form taken using the purchasers own camera or mobile phone, so they can show their friends the moment of purchase! Just the sheer novelty value and conceptual experience being sufficient motivation and gratification in that it also demonstrates a desire to allow this demonstration to continue in a solidarity of purpose in the wider community.
The bottle tops may only be bought as a novelty item, and then returned to you, the idea being that the actual picture of the purchase is the value of your currency, not the bottle tops themselves. This is no different than having a picture taken of yourself at a fairground with a parrot on your shoulder. (This is the reason I like the picture of me holding the unidentifiable squashed bird on this page!) So long as the actual 'currency is not 'traded' in the wider community for further use, means they will not have a 'real' value or use, or become traded up or down!
If someone wants to 'spend' your 'coins' within your community you do not actually have to 'sell' anything. However if someone wants to bring you some cardboard, and you have a placard writing department, they can exchange your coinage for a placard.
This in essence was the purpose of the 'Temple Money' used in Jerusalem. So long as you don't get greedy by escalating the cost of your books, medical equipment, or anything else you might need to offer to 'visitors'.
For instance we offer an accident and emergency service in Jersey for anyone visiting the island. We can't offer it free any longer because we don't have reciperocal health care agreement with the UK, and we do not have a budget that could meet it, so this is paid for by the user. Most people take out holiday insurance to cover this eventuality. There is a policy in place for those who may get free health care. This is so we don't get health tourists. Our policy is probably on the www.gov.je website. (I forgot we had to change it).
Our Health provision at the Hospital is free for qualifying residents, but we have to pay for the doctor. We don't pay for prescriptions, so we try not to abuse the system by having medication we don't need. We do have private health care wards as well, which is a freedom of choice for those who do have private medical insurance, or funds to pay for private rooms. Sometimes these facilities are used for non paying hospitalisation if they are required.
Basically, the sandwiches are better, and you get a menu choice, as the hospital chef comes and asks you what you like to eat! Otherwise the level of care and specialists is the same, except you have a ward rather than a private room. Obviously if you are paying you get into a shorter queue, but the idea is that this helps fund the longer queue. If we need to go to a bigger Hospital in the UK, for instance for something like my Husband's heart failure, we would be sent to St George's in London, or the Southampton Hospital for complicated things. This is paid for out of the health budget.
There are very good contributary schemes like this one. I think it's a good idea to have a little policy like this to help pay for medical benefits. When buying in big groups, I think you can get discounts. One of the things I think should happen is when you are entitled to free care, and you don't turn up for your appointment with the service you should be expected to pay the full charge. It wastes an appointment for someone else otherwise.
You might also consider a bit of tourism in Wall St, in that once your community esablishes it's core membership, (nationality, ie call your group a name to give it an identity) and then allows a 'sleepover weekend' to willing purchasers to join you in your demonstration of a democratic community. You may also consider offering street people a place in the community if you wish to offer social assistance to people who have lived like this on the fringes of society all their lives.
I can't remember how much our overseas aid budget is for Jersey, I am sure it is on www.gov.je somewhere. We also have a lot of charitable organisations and overseas aid project we can get involved with. We send quite a few container loads out to Romania of clothes and 'shoeboxes' of necessities each year. Our Hospice service is entirely funded by charitable donation and fundraising.
Our Channel Islands Constitution is a Bailiwick. You will have to look it all up if you like the idea of it. We are a Crown Dependency, in that The Queen's Governor sits in the Royal Chambers, but he is only allowed to give two addresses. One when He arrives at the start of His four year term, and one when He leaves. Her Magesty appoints our Governor to office, and we have been blessed by the appintments she has made for us. Our Governor participates in all aspects of Island life, and helps with all sorts of community initiatives. Our Governor is chosen from one of the armed forces, and it's a sort of pre-reitirement number. They usually get a knighthood afterwards.
We just like it this way, so what everyone else decides to do with their democractic process is up to them. The important thing to do is keep communities smaller, so everyone knows each other, and to provide a proper judicial and social policing system. We have both paid and honorary police forces that generally get on quite well with each other.
The twelve parishes each have a 'Constable', who is elected by the parish, and they also sit in the States Chamber. We have an island wide mandate for Senators, and a local mandate for Constables and the Parish Deputies. The number of 'Deputies' depend on the size of the parish, so this is a bit of proportional representation. However the states voted to reduce the number of Deputies by four, and there was a bit of a heated moment at the Trinity Husting over it
It is a very interesting model that has evolved. I can't remember how long ago the decision was taken not to allow the Parish Priests to sit in the States chamber, I would have to look it up. The reason we decided to change was the Church of England parish church appointee was not elected, so this was not acceptable as a part of democratic process. Also it only represented one denomination of one 'faith', so again it was not representational of the wider community.
I hope everyone who is struggling to establish a 'New Democracy' takes heart that there are many different forms of democratic process, and that one model doesn't work for everybody. Also the model mustn't be so establishmental that it can't be modified by due process of its own system. It is such a shame that dictatorships can't just be turned into the same kind of system of representational system we have.
Perhaps if the Saudis and Libyans were to calm down a bit and take a good look at a model like ours there would be room for everybody to be represented. I realise both conflicts would be better negotiated if perhaps the model used was to keep the 'dictator/royalty' position as part of a constitutional structure, and privilages afforded (But tax payable!) in order to come to a real move towards peace within each country. Oppositions between 'Royalism' and 'Parliamentary Democracy' need to be united, not fighting endless terrorism, between each other for ever more. To be honest, I think Presidential Democracy is very dangerous in so many ways. You may as well just have a dictatorship!
There has to be a 'model' of some sort to establish a process. Without a 'vision' or model there is no direction anyone knows how to take, and you just end up with everyone arguing over what they think should happen. Once the model is working, you then modify it to suit your own needs.
Well done everyone who is keeping it a peaceful revolution! If you are fighting and killing, it's not very helpful. Just try calling a break from hostilities and start negotiating, everyone has far more to gain by being around, than just killed off to allow those who have more firepower to 'win the political process'.