Vogon Democracy, Revised: Americans Elect Violates Rules, Then Fixes the Problem
Update, March 8 2012: More Vogon Democracy…
Update, March 7 2012: Americans Elect has responded, fixing its violation of Rule 12.2…
… by posting an update with a link to the motion:
I am glad to see Americans Elect move into greater compliance with its Rules.
It would be helpful if Americans Elect now posted the text of its own decisions, and not just short summaries, because the devil’s in the details, don’t you know.
The remainder of this post is preserved as a record of the problem.
They want to count the votes in their own presidential nomination, but they can’t seem to follow their own rules.
Reversal Motions: The Rules
The first-ever online privatized presidential nomination in the history of our nation, Americans Elect, has a set of Official Rules that govern how it is to treat dissenting Delegates:
12.2 Reversal Votes. Unless otherwise expressly provided, any Delegate who wishes to reverse any decision of any Committee or Board may do so by sending a statement of 500 words or less by email to the Board within 72 hours after notice of any decision is posted on the Website. The Board shall then post the statement on the Website with instructions that any Delegate who agrees with reversal shall “Support Click” the statement. If 10,000 or more Delegates Support Click the statement within 48 hours after its posting, the Board shall give three days’ notice to all Delegates of a reversal vote and post a statement of no more than 500 words in support of the decision and the statement in opposition to the decision on the Website after such notice. If a majority of all registered Delegates vote in favor of reversal, the decision shall be reversed and the Committee or Board shall make a different decision. This process of Reversal Votes shall be the sole and exclusive remedy for any Delegate aggrieved by any action, conduct, or failure to act of Americans Elect.
As you can read here, I have submitted a formal motion for delegate reversal of an Americans Elect decision — one that follows all the stipulations of Rule 12.2. Read the text of the motion for yourself.
Reversal Motion: What Americans Elect Has Done
Americans Elect has failed to post my statement, as required by Rule 12.2 and as personally promised by CEO Kahlil Byrd in a conversation I had with him yesterday. Instead, all Americans Elect has posted is this:
The text of the statement moving to reverse has not been posted, as clearly required by Rule 12.2 and as clearly promised by CEO Kahlil Byrd just yesterday. There’s no link to the text of the reversal motion. Not on that Americans Elect page. Not on any Americans Elect page. All you can do is click a button marked “Oppose,” if you oppose… what? The vague description of the policy change made by Americans Elect, without any link for you to read the text of that change either? Yep, that’s it. Without reading the statement declaring why you should oppose it? Yep, that’s it.
This is not a de minimus violation of the Americans Elect Rules, and its not just about the Rules. It’s about Americans Elect’s pledge that delegates would be full and meaningful participants in the process. There is no way for delegates to figure out whether or why they would want to “Support Click” the reversal statement I have filed if the reversal statement is not posted. Heck, the original Americans Elect decision itself hasn’t been posted. There is no real and meaningful way for Americans Elect delegates to participate in decision-making regarding the Rules if the actual text of changes to the rules aren’t posted, and if the actual text of motions to oppose those changes aren’t posted. These are Vogon tactics:
There’s no point acting all surprised about it. All the planning charts and demolition orders have been on display in your local planning department in Alpha Centauri for fifty of your Earth years, so you’ve had plenty of time to lodge any formal complaint and it’s far too late to start making a fuss about it now.
Americans Elect promised me personally it would put up the text of the motion. But more important than that, it promised you it would. It promised that you would be a full and meaningful participant in a democratic process allowing informed dissent. It made that promise when it published Rule 12.2. It made the promise that you would be able to participate when it wrote and publicized Bylaw 2.3, which declares:
All Delegates and persons registered to vote in Americans Elect have a fundamental right to fully and meaningfully participate in the business and affairs of Americans Elect without any monetary encumbrance.
Americans Elect made a pledge to you when it sent out flashy promotional material declaring that you, the American Citizen, were Americans Elect’s “true boss”:
The Delegates — and the rest of the American people — are the true boss of Americans Elect.
This is not what democracy looks like. If this bothers you, please spread the word.