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Direct Representation

Common Good's recommended system of Common Good Democracy is a one-hundred-percent democracy. That is, participation is generally 100% even if some people do not vote directly (including children and others who cannot speak for themselves). Here's how it works:

Each member gets one vote.

You assign another member as your ongoing Proxy (Representative). Then whenever you don't vote, your Representative votes for you. The Representative's vote simply counts double (one vote for you and one vote for the Representative)*. If your Representative also fails to vote, then their Representative votes for all three of you. And so forth.

In this example diagram, everyone to the right of the dotted blue line voted directly on some issue. Everyone else voted by proxy. The numbers show how many people each Representative represents (including the Representative). Notice that everyone's voice is counted, whether or not they vote directly - one person one vote.

* A community may choose to give direct votes a stronger voice by passing only a fraction of your vote to your Representative, say 90%. Then your Representative's vote counts not double but 1.9. And if your Representative also fails to vote then their Representative's vote counts (1 + .9 x 1.9) = 2.71.

How the representatives work

You are a direct "constituent" of your Representative and an indirect constituent of your Representative's Proxy, and so forth. A popular and trusted Representative may vote on behalf of many constituents.

The most trusted Representatives (those having the most constituents) meet in person to research and debate issues, as our current elected representatives do. In a Common Good Democracy, however, trusted Representatives do not decide issues directly. They oversee the public discussions, choose the wording for questions to be voted on, and assure that all the operations of the Common Good Community advance the greater good of all.