Political Systems Based on Consent
Economic Systems Based on Labor
Legal Systems Based on Equality
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      The problem is obvious and omnipresent. The growth of government continues to be stunted by an ideological void. Although living on and lying within this planet are all of the motivations and materials necessary to create relatively comfortable lifestyles for everyone, we still live in a place where a few people live lavishly, some people live decently, and most people barely live - and a large part of the reason that governments throughout the world are failing to serve the common interests of entire citizenries is that they are predicated on fallacy. Regardless of ideological bent, each of the predominant operating theories for government is demonstrably illogical and doomed to perpetual failure.

      While systematic political theories are impossible to deductively "prove", there are certain conclusions regarding people and the types of governmental systems that best serve human needs that can be substantiated to reasonable degrees of certainty. Yet Authoritarianism, Republicanism, Capitalism, Conservatism, Keynesianism, Liberalism, Socialism, Communism, and their progeny, are all inconsistent with these simple truths. In fact, each of these ideologies begins to get off rational track at the early stages of analysis, making important mistakes at the most fundamental levels. For instance, it will be demonstrated that careful and correct use of science and logic necessarily leads to the conclusion that optimal government is that which serves the common interests of all of the citizens when it is possible, and employs the fairest and most impartial system of dispute resolution when it is not. However, no governmental system on Earth is premised upon a theory that is specifically designed to serve the interests of all of the governed. On the contrary, in different ways and in varying degrees, they all operate to allow a few members of a small owning or governing class to exploit and subjugate a much larger working class. While some of the philosophers who formulated the theories that underlie the operative ideologies consciously intended to justify and promote such elitism, even the writings of more humanitarian political scientists targeted at reforming such systems have been bastardized into protecting them.

      As a result, most members of the working class toil away day after day, while making enough money to pay for basic needs and a little recreation, if they are lucky. Over on the other side of the tracks, many members of the owning class have never put in an honest day's work, if they have worked at all. Nonetheless, such parasites are allowed to lounge about enjoying the products and services created by the people who actually produce things.

      Solutions to the problem have proven more elusive. Why hasn't someone formulated and enacted a theory that would control governments into treating all citizens fairly and equitably? Obviously, the answer is complicated. It will be argued that the clearest and most rational way to get a sense for where things have gone so wrong, and to analyze governmental issues in general, is to divide the arenas of state activity into the categories of political, economic, and legal systems. Except for the military and the media (which will later be addressed along with political systems), and educational institutions (which will later be addressed along with economic systems), each of the arms, wings, branches and tentacles of government fall fairly neatly into one of these categories. Isn't the best method for designing "systems" of any sort to start by identifying the basic objectives to be achieved, and then to implement those mechanisms that are most likely to achieve them most effectively? So what goals would be accomplished by optimal political, economic, and legal systems? In fact, it will be seen that such objectives are actually more universal and less controversial than they have been made out to be. The only things that most of the people in any nation really need or want from their governments are political systems that they agree to support, economic systems that pay them in some reasonable proportion to what they contribute to society, and legal systems that protect them in an impartial manner. Or, to be exact, I conclude that governments should be mandated to distribute political power based on consent, income based on labor, and legal protection based on equality. Remember the mantra: consent, labor, and equality. These goals capture the essence of optimal political, economic, and legal systems.

      Yet none of the operative theories were designed in this manner. Even the philosophers who started by identifying basic objectives and then specifically tailored systems to achieve them, failed to recognize either the wisest ends or the most efficient means. Politically, it will be seen that rather than basing political systems on the consent of the governed, the paradigmatic theorists built upon the foundations of absolute power, elitism, regression and/or reaction. None of them are "democratic", no matter how often they claim to be. Economically, rather than rewarding people according to their labor, the operative theories were ultimately designed to allow or even encourage income distribution based on status, alleviation, need, and/or equality. None of them facilitate the actual profit motive that would accompany compensation proportionate to one's contribution to society. Indeed, even though many of the workers own some things, and many members of the owning class do some work, the inverse relationship between labor and compensation is undeniable - the people who are rewarded most by existing governmental systems typically contribute less to society than those who are rewarded least. Legally, instead of initiating institutions aimed at ensuring impartial justice, it will be demonstrated that existing systems were constructed upon the cornerstones of privilege, collusion, and/or natural law. None of them afford "equal protection" to all of the governed, by any means.

      To make matters worse, such foundational flaws are just the tip of the iceberg as far as ideological insolvency is concerned - and things get even more attenuated the deeper one digs. As Aristotle stated: "The least initial deviation from the truth is multiplied later a thousandfold." Nor is the predominance of such false theories a new phenomenon. Despite the attempts of the beneficiaries to associate their administrations with various highfalutin notions and sundry buzzwords, it can be seen that every government in recorded history at least eventually turned out to be nothing but a plutocracy in practice.

      Yes, there have been some advances in some places at some times. There are, and always have been, a lot of earnest people out there fighting back. These friends of the working class associate themselves with many different words and beliefs, but in order to emphasize their common pursuits, such allies of the majority will be collectively referred to as "progressives" (a person who believes in a "philosophy which welcomes innovations and reforms in the political, economic and social order" as a means "to assure people broader control of their governments" and "greater economic, political and social justice") and/or "humanitarians" ("a person devoted to promoting the welfare of humanity, especially through the elimination of pain and suffering").     At various points in history, some of these progressives have successfully rebelled against their oppressors and retrieved some of their resources, rights and respect. Still, these victories were usually waged against foreign oppressors, and individual autonomy was then suppressed by domestic elites who assumed power. Others have scraped for the fruits of their labor, and won various concessions. But no grassroots labor movement has ever succeeded in establishing and entrenching economic systems that compensate workers in any significant proportion to the labor they perform. Likewise, no known legal system has yet dispensed justice in a reasonably impartial manner.

      Yes, there are more prudent and humanitarian ideologies out there that just aren't being utilized ("Libertarian Socialism" is the most notable example). However, no systematic theory has come along that has addressed the defects that debunk the predominant ideologies in a manner sufficient to guide enough members of the working class into turning the tides. A large part of the problem derives from the fact that very few people have even attempted to formulate systematic political theories. Even fewer have done so recently, with the benefit of all of the lessons learned from the newer governmental experiments. The bulk of the political treatises that have been written in the last century that even proposed some sort of reform in the first place amounted to piecemeal adaptations of one of the predominant theories. Modern political theory has largely stagnated, with most punditry focused on ad hoc treatment of the symptoms of ideological fallacy, rather than attempting to prescribe a systemic cure - and an imperfect foundation can never be corrected through renovating the upper floors. In stubbornly clinging to the same irrational assumptions that caused the predominant theories to fail, and by fueling the notion that the only viable solutions to societal problems are to be found in making minor modifications to these theories, such political scientists have only served to protect the status quo. Of the handful of people who have sincerely attempted to prescribe systematic reform in the recent past, most have failed to address the full picture, treating political, economic, and/or legal systems as if they are irrelevant to each other. A new ideology that addresses the problems that exist in all three governmental entities has been sorely lacking. This theoretical dearth has devastating ramifications every day it continues. I believe that one of the primary reasons that the oppressed have continued to be unsuccessful in throwing off these institutional chains is that their theoretical alternatives have been limited, and that they have been waiting for an understandable, sensible and cohesive ideology that is precise enough to protect their interests, and flexible enough to allow them to maintain their diversity - that if there is any real hope for salvaging the notion that governmental authority can be constrained into impartially serving the common good, it will come in the form of a new operating theory for government that clearly identifies common systematic objectives and then implements those mechanisms most likely to accomplish them. Until such ideological innovations arrive, the best that the people who support humanitarian government can do is to continue to operate in the makeshift and piecemeal fashion to which we've become so accustomed.

      This book is an attempt to formulate such a theory - to circumvent the pitfalls that have caused these theoretical failures in the past, and to postulate an alternative framework for designing better public systems in the future - an operating theory for government that is logically and scientifically consistent with human nature - one that is driven by better motives than "the right" and better methods than "the left" - an ideology that is designed to finally start controlling governments into indiscriminately serving the common good, on each of its systematic levels - not a prescription for perfect or "Utopian" government by any means, but a way to make significant strides in the right direction.

      I have chosen to refer to this theory as "Autonomism" due to its intended use as a vehicle for creating governmental systems that are narrowly tailored to provide true self-determination to all of the governed. Rather than trying to mask or ignore the fact that people would naturally exercise their freedom to disagree regarding certain political, economic, and legal issues, this theory presupposes and accommodates such differences. It's all about working together to achieve the goals we can agree upon, and allowing others to pursue their own agendas as long as they do not violate the rights of others - and regulating the regulators at every turn.

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