Transferrable Votes

One question I get asked when discussing the futility of voting is how I would improve the system. While I think democracy is fundamentally broken, there are certainly less-broken variants. One example is if votes are transferrable. That is, rather than voting, I pick someone to be my proxy in all elections. This has a significant effect because it concentrates the dispersed interests of the electorate. Someone with a lot of proxies actually has some incentive to research what the best way to use them is.

While I'm sure y'all can think of plenty of flaws in this design, its an easy response to the question "how could we do things better?". Understanding it requires much less mind-stretching than understanding the advantages of radically different political systems - and thinking about incentives is a step in the right direction.

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Proxying the vote is a fine

Proxying the vote is a fine hack. It does have the downside, however, of not being anonymous. This creates potential problems with vote-buying, though, perhaps that would be a feature not a bug. There is a big upside to transparency: you can allow instant reproxy. This would allow you to punish political parties on a per-vote basis, not just at election time.

Vote proxying in elections brings up this question: if you can proxy your vote in an election, why not just ditch elections altogether and do all democratic decisionmaking using proxies?

I'd suggest something like this: seat in the representative body the top 500 proxies, by number of people they proxy for. Require 50% of all registered "voters" ("proxiers"?) to vote yes to pass normal legislation. (Thus people who register but refuse to proxy, or whose proxies didn't make the cut, or whose proxies don't show up to vote, effectively vote "no" on everything.) Require supermajorities for things that are known to be dangerous to liberty, if they can't be absolutely forbidden for some reason.

You have an excellent point

You have an excellent point that once we have proxies, we don't need "representatives'. As you say, the formal representative body (the people who get to argue in a big room) can consist of the top X proxiers. But all proxiers get to cast their votes.

And while voting is anonymous, party registration is not, right?