Being considered a professional is important. But most of us are 'old' professionals, not old in age, but old in thinking style and approach to living. Old professionals separate science and spirit and think in terms of either/or - 'you're either for me, or against me.' New professionals connect science and spirit and think in both/and terms. Please read: The New Professionalism: Connecting Science and Spirit, available at www.WisdomAtWorkUSA.com.
Friday, September 28, 2012
Fixing Democracy, Part 8
This is the next in a series of posts on how to make our
democracy work better based on an article in The Intelligent Optimist magazine
(formerly Ode) by Tom Atlee.
“Of course, such an implicitly powerful institution, even if
randomly selected and temporary, requires thoughtful design and procedure to
help it be wise and sustainable.It
shouldn’t be too large or too small—or deliberate for too long or too short a
time. [Like Goldilocks’ porridge, it needs to be ‘just right’ and that will
take some time and experimentation.]Like a trial jury, it needs legal and
procedural safeguards to protect if from manipulation.It needs dependable information—and help
understanding that information. It needs good facilitation, and we need to
ensure that the facilitation can’t be abused.
“We need to design these councils well. Then, as they are
institutionalized and become more powerful, they join the list of democratic
institutions—like elections and freedoms—that we need to protect. Public
wisdom, like liberty, requires both good systemic design and constant
vigilance. This is probably a different vision of democracy. To most people
democracy involves thousands or millions of citizens discussing, advocating and
voting on public issues. Truly, it does. But it also involves the society as a
whole, acting together.
“Nowadays when individual citizens act together, they almost
always act in partisan groups and so on—to elect candidates or push for public
policies they favor. The latest trends in revitalizing democracy focus on mass
participation—getting as many people as possible to do these things—to talk, to
vote, to volunteer, to protest—the more the merrier. Mass public conversations,
voter registration drives, online citizen input websites, voter information websites
and other approaches seek to involve more and more individual citizens in
informed civic activity.” That is all very important, but…..