Open Source Law to Remove Politics from Government

Our current political model is based on the antiquated concept of relying on a popularity vote that puts in power a minority of individuals who are atypical of the general population they rule over and exposes society to the destructive forces of corruption.

Without an effective way for people to express their needs, they are unheard and frustrated. Currently in December of 2018, Paris is up in flames from the cars of regular citizens being burned by masses of people who can't find a better way to express themselves.

The constitutions of our modern democracies put in place centuries ago arguably made sense at the time. Nowadays, our legal systems have become an alphabet soup of deprecated laws, amended with more laws quickly losing their relevance, and a poorly documented labyrinth of Trial Precedents to give these arbitrary rules some context and meaning.

Open Source The "Code" of Laws

If today, the internet allows for millions of people to communicate and collaborate on gigantic projects, why can't we do the same with the most important project of all: the legal system.

The Law is in fact a gigantic collection of rules and statements... very similar to the computer code that powers software. Just like software, or any tool for that matter, it is most useful if it is relevant to the realities of the people who use it.

As an example, let us look at one of the most popular pieces of software today: WordPress. Started as a way to make blogging more accessible, today "32% of the web uses WordPress, from hobby blogs to the biggest news sites online". Although we can indeed give credit to a handful of people for first creating WordPress, it would never have become the highly adopted and incredibly effective Content Management System it is today if it weren't for the community that helps improve it constantly.

WordPress is what we call Open Source software. Thanks to a smart use of Version Control technology, any of it's code can be edited, or "branched" by anyone. This means that bugs, improvements and additions can be suggested by any person who feels motivated to participate. This involvement opportunity is forever open to all people who are capable of writing in that programming language, and their only qualification to participate is the desire to do so, typically driven by the belief that their idea is helpful in some way.

Of course there are also public forums where non-technical people can request things they would not be able to write in computer language themselves. The beauty of WordPress's Open Source nature is that everyone can be involved directly in the creation and evolution of the software, regardless of their background.

Compare this with our "Democratic" politics where your only two options to express your opinion are basically:

  • voting for leaders you know almost nothing about (except what is said publicly by themselves and their opponents)
  • skipping out on work duties and participating in anger-driven strikes that stall the economy and often even lead to destruction and very little change (or worse even, a violent revolution or Coup d'Etat)

Of course, not every suggestion should be made law, and the same goes for WordPress. Only "branches" that are approved by the community and authoritative admins are merged into the "trunk" to become an actual part of the software. So Open Source is not a chaotic free-for-all, but rather a hyper-inclusive way of creating the best possible version of a code-source. It relies on constructive participation and puts some power in the hands of anyone who is motivated to take part. Most importantly, it exposes the process of writing codes to the public and removes it from the ivory towers that are taken for granted in today's modern politics.

Crowd-Source the Law with Draft

It is no coincidence that this document was written with Draft, the Version-Control-powered online writing tool that allows for Open-Source style collaborative creation and editing of text.

I invite anyone who is motivated to participate in refining and adding to this plea for a new type of Government.

Let's create a Crowdocracy.WithDraft.com

Let us use this tool to collaboratively re-write a modern constitution and book of laws that makes sense and is always kept up to date!

Here are the first steps:

Features Request List for the Crowdocracy Tech:

  • Simple UI so anyone can participate
  • Version Control so that changes can be easily suggested, merged, tracked and even rolled-back
  • Good navigation and search features so it is easily referenced by even the least tech or law-savvy
  • Robust commenting system so that any part of the law can be discussed in detail
  • Inclusion of Precedent Trials and their outcomes so that the interpretation and application of the law is made clear to all
  • Extremely high security to avoid any hacks (look at solutions implemented for Crypto-Currency where hosting is crowd-sourced to protect authenticity of data)
  • Have a super easy way to navigate the laws, like GingkoApp.com
  • ... add requests here...

How it Works

Crowdocracy.WithDraft.com is intended for you to log in to comment or edit any of the content you find here. As stated previously, the goal is to link Draft functionality to the full repertory of law texts and edit everything in Open Source fashion. That treatment includes this INDEX page of the project just like all others.

Grab your pen... get set... Draft!

Get started by clicking this Edit Link.


Interesting links:

https://www.ted.com/talks/clay_shirky_how_the_internet_will_one_day_transform_government#t-1093381

https://sunlightfoundation.com/2012/09/27/on-legislative-collaboration-and-version-control/

https://sunlightfoundation.com/2014/06/25/opengov-voices-how-gitlaw-turns-the-french-parliamentary-process-into-open-data/

https://www.reddit.com/r/law/comments/2ms4bn/the_idea_of_setting_up_version_control_systems/cm7c3y7/

https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=3812288

Biggest conversation in comments on this post: https://blog.abevoelker.com/gitlaw-github-for-laws-and-legal-documents-a-tourniquet-for-american-liberty/

These people might want to participate or have useful tools

https://okfn.org/about/

http://www.openingparliament.org/

http://okfnlabs.org/textus/

https://web.hypothes.is/blog/annotation-is-now-a-web-standard/

http://www.citizenintelligence.org/About.php

https://github.com/statedecoded/statedecoded

https://plus.google.com/+MakeYourLaws/posts/NQVuM65jZqp


Also, see my plea to help the USA adopt the Metric system.