This is the introduction to Mr. Stolyarov’s essay, “Investmentocracy: A Challenge to Conventional Democratic Principles and a Framework for a New Free Society.”
Numerous principles of voting have unnecessarily been considered sacred in contemporary Western societies. One of these is the principle of “one man, one vote.” Another is the inalienability of voting power from individuals. Yet a third erroneous principle often taken for granted is the inability of individuals to legally pool their votes in favor of a candidate or policy they support. Finally, age and residency limitations on voting necessarily exclude some qualified persons while empowering politically ignorant and undedicated others. These common ideas and policies shall hereafter be referred to as Conventional Democratic Principles (CDPs). The application of these principles virtually always requires a system of compulsory taxation to support the functions of the government.
Here, an alternative system is proposed – a system where individuals and organizations are free to augment their absolute numbers of votes, and thereby their relative voting power, in proportion to their voluntary contributions to the government. This system shall hereafter be called investmentocracy – rule by investment in the government. Investmentocracy corrects numerous conventional democratic injustices and inefficiencies, while eliminating the need for compulsory taxation.
A concrete and thorough formulation of investmentocracy exists in Article III of the Freecharter, a constitution I created in order to develop a comprehensive framework for a new society and government which will fully respect and protect individual rights. Instead of only discussing how investmentocracy might work in general, it is useful to provide a concrete document for the reader’s reference and as a starting point for future attempts to incorporate investmentocracy into a governmental system. The Freecharter is useful in its ability to simultaneously outline a specific arrangement within which investmentocracy might work, as well as to describe other institutions which complement and reinforce investmentocracy.
Indeed, the Freecharter includes numerous other innovations designed to ensure that a government subject to the principle of investmentocracy does not violate individual freedoms. Some of these protections include a more extensive bill of rights and an equally extensive section of restrictive clauses on the power of governments at all levels, a tricameral legislature with different methods of election for each chamber, rotating veto power by lot and the office of the Nullifier, and the requirement that all citizens of the free society explicitly adopt the constitution.
In this essay, some of the auxiliary protections for individual rights under investmentocracy will be explained in brief. However, the primary focus will be on these institutions’ relation to investmentocracy’s viability. It will be useful for subsequent papers to analyze each of the other institutions in the Freecharter in their own right. Examining all of the Freecharter’s proposed institutions and innovations can solidify the groundwork for a free society and expand our understanding of how such a society might function.
Read more of Mr. Stolyarov’s essay, “Investmentocracy: A Challenge to Conventional Democratic Principles and a Framework for a New Free Society.” A list of works cited is available at the page linked to in the preceding sentence.