Hey everyone I thought maybe we should have a post which explains IBDD and the vote trading system and its benefits in one nice and cozy space.
Everyone If I've made any error or haven't explained anything well enough please comment below and I'll make some appropriate corrections. Ultimately all this information will be codified in the wiki, but we are currently undergoing renovations So here goes
Interest or Issue Based Direct Democracy (IBDD)
let's begin by thinking about democracy as group decision making. First, we need to come up with an option for the group to do, then decide if we should do it.
IBDD doesn't really have a system for generating legislation as yet, Max has spoken about it a little bit here and there. Unfortunately in these forums - and any conversation really - complex issues become monsterous jumbles to keep track of and respond to as we delve deeper into the questions at hand. So let's put legislation generation aside for now, as it's not relevant to the decision making process.
If we look at an early approach to democracy, specifically Athens, it was simply a Direct Democracy approach. Whoever attends gets to raise their hands for yes, or raise their hands for no (let's ignore the lack of inclusiveness in who was allowed to vote for this conversation). This is great, super fair, everyone gets a chance to have their say, if the issues didn't matter to you, you could simply not show up and everything went on without you, or you could actively abstain if you felt morally compromised or you were protesting for some reason. So these have always been the four democratic options. Yes, No, apathy, abstinence.
Direct Democracy is great when numbers are below a few hundred voters. More than that and it starts getting really tricky, then compounded by disparate groups of voters, it is impossible to adminsiter. So the founding fathers of the United States implemented representative democracy as we know it now, which was great at the time, lots of problems were identified and solutions or work arounds were created, however over time partisanship took a larger and larger role, ultimately perverting democracy in favour of propogating private agendas, Autocracy!
Representation in it's current form - fixed term and partisinal is causing stagnation on largely supported issues and is much to easily abused by career politicians and those looking to stack the rules in their favour by bank rolling said politicians and their parties.
So we take a step back, strangely Louis Carroll back in 1884 proposed a delegative voting system very similar to what is now known as Liquid Democracy, although no further mention is recorded until mid 20th century when the term Liquid Democracy started to show up. It didn't really gain any traction until recently (10-20 years ago) when the Pirate Parties started using it to organise themselves. Liquid Democracy is essentially an attempt to fuse and maximise the beneficial aspects of Direct Democracy and Representative Democracy. Representative democracy free's citizens from having to be engaged with every piece of legislation, and allows (although partisanship obstructs this) for a concentration of political skill (by this I mean negotiators, visionaries and persuaders). Whilst Direct Democracy prevents a concentration of power, allows citizens to change laws to match their changing perspectives and keeps the society safe from oppressive or authoritarian rules. Direct Democracy is the most legitimate form of democracy, whereas representative democracy is a more efficient form of democracy. Weaving these two notions together. Liquid Democracy is Direct Democracy with the ability to assign your vote to another citizen(s), either along policy lines to various different people, or your vote on every issue to just one other individual. The delegates (those with the ability to cast other people's votes) can vote or further delegate their vote to a third citizen, and so on and so forth until someone will cast their vote and all those delegated to them. Citizens can see where their vote ends up going and can retract their delegation at any time. So if a delegate breaks the trust of those delegating to them they will lose their power. This gives a "liquid" nature to the way a society organises their decision making power, hence Liquid Democracy.
Issue Based Direct Democracy, builds on top of Liquid Democracy by providing an open and transparent market, which maximises resolutions and minimises stagnation, blockages and intransigence. IBDD achieves this, whilst simultaneously keeping control in the hands of the voting population.
The specific optimisations are for legislation that does not engage the full voting population, ie where apathetic positions are common. If the issue at hand is only of importance to a subset of the population, should they have more of a say? IBDD assumes that they should, however, if they are to gain more say on one issue, they should relinquish their say on another. [that statement sounds harsh, but within the context of the market driven forces of vote trading it's more about maximising impact on the area that interests you, also it isn't strictly true that you need to relinquish your vote on other issues to have more of a say when it matters, as there is a small amount of tokens that will be distributed to every voter, every year, so you can always just use what you've got and keep your votes fully engaged on all other issues, though this may be minimally effective].
IBDD attempts to "activate" apathetic votes by allowing them to be traded for "tokens" with other citizens. The price of the vote in tokens will fluctuate according to the rules of supply and demand. So for a more contested piece of legislation it will "cost" more to gain more votes. For a less contested piece of legislation (more apathy among voters) extra votes will "cost" less.
The inclusion of the trading system stacks the system in favour of finding resolutions rather than intransigence, blocking another group from having their say, or pressuring vote trading behind closed doors. Which is what happens now anyway. Vote trading is a natural component of democracy "I'll vote with you on this, if you vote with me on that" IBDD simply brings it out into the open and provides the means for the society at large to reorganise their decision making along lines of interest, rather than in a uniform one size fits all kind of way.
The function of this is intended to be the easement of passage of legislation which effects smaller groups only without significant effects on the broarder population. Remember the market should only have significant impact when most voters and their delegates are apathetic to an issue, which shouldn't happen all that much. Furthermore there is always an option of not letting your vote be traded i.e. Abstinence rather than casting a vote, this is useful if you feel that a particular group should make the decision but you don't know how they will vote. By abstaining you are preventing both for and against positions the ability to gain more influence in the decision.
There is some minutia surrounding the market system that I'm still unsure of, I think Max is thinking the vote market will be run as a silent bid where you declare how many votes you'd like to purchase at what price, without knowledge of who else is bidding and how much they are bidding for, possibly without knowledge of how many votes are available either. This should force people to spend more tokens than other bidding systems, essentially making it harder to gain more influence especially over many pieces of legislation. This should also make it difficult to road block legislation by quickly depleting frequently active groups "tokens".
I hope that has been written well enough that it clarifies IBDD, If anything is incorrect or needs clarification please comment below.