Utopia - Part 2

Welcome to my second post discussing Utopia.  To see the first, just click the “Older Post” link at the bottom of the page.

In creating the large disorganized pile of notes that will eventually take coherent form here, I’ve realized that most of my ideas won’t work as intended without a well-informed populace.  I’d love to add well-educated to that, but education is a separate topic that I will address later.  It’s impossible to prevent willful ignorance, but we can at least minimize unintentional ignorance.  I’ve come up with two things that I think would do the job.

The first is universal broadband internet access.  Make the internet a public utility, no different than electricity, water, or sewer.  I don’t care so much about the actual implementation.  In some locales it could be community wi-fi, in others fiber or copper, or perhaps even satellite.  No one should be required to take advantage of it, but it needs to be available to everyone.

The second is trickier to implement, but probably far more important.  It’s the idea of “qualified news media”.  In order to be called “news”, such media must clearly mark the difference between fact and opinion, publish prominent retractions and corrections of material published as factual that is wrong or misleading, and disclose any financial ties to people or organizations in their stories.  And it must be made freely available to the public.

Any individual or organization that meets these requirements can be a qualified news source.  Citizen journalism is not only allowed; it is encouraged.  In fact, I see no reason foreign news services couldn’t set up local news outlets, as long as they follow all the rules.

The people have a right to correct, factual information that can be trusted.  The news must be the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.  And it must be constitutionally protected from persecution or prosecution.  The truth must never be a crime, under any circumstances.

I’m not exactly sure how to protect legitimately classified information from inappropriate release while still guaranteeing the journalistic rights I’ve already outlined.  I’d be happy to hear your suggestions.


Utopia - Part 1

For anyone who actually bothered to read my ramblings when last I posted something here, sorry about the really long wait.  But I’ve come up with something that kind of demands that I put it out here for the world to see, so I’ll be writing again.

It’s no secret that the US political system is far from optimal if you’re merely a citizen and not a corporation or multimillionaire.  Its society has a few shortcomings as well, although I’m pretty sure there’s disagreement about exactly what those are.

I have some ideas about what the ideal government and society would be, and I’m going to put them out here for everyone to see.  I welcome discussion, as long as it’s civil and reasonable.  Consider this a combination constitutional congress and interim legislature with an ultimate veto authority in the form of me.

The foundation of our utopian society is the UN Universal Declaration of Human Rights.  Our constitution will include the declaration by reference.  Laws that violate it will be considered unconstitutional and unenforceable.

The function of government is to provide for the common good of all its citizens, with no exceptions.  Because Article 2 of the Universal Declaration allows for no exceptions based on nationality or lack thereof, we have to make sure not to violate the rights of any foreigners while we’re at it.

Here are some of the things I intend to cover in this series:
  • Electoral process
  • Judicial process
  • Public services
  • Civil Rights Laws

I’m sure I’ll come up with more later, and will also happily address issues brought up in comments.  Speaking of comments, I have enabled anonymous commenting in an effort to spur additional discussion.  If said discussion becomes trolling, I may be forced to revisit that policy.