This is a continuation of my last post where I distinguished dedomenocracy as focused on injustice instead of justice. Justice is permitted indefinite time and resources toward the goal of finding absolute truth about faults or failings and then serving the appropriate remedy in context of a person’s soul (the totality of a person’s life). In contrast, injustice approach is encouraged to find the quickest resolution so that everyone can get on with their lives. While I describe this as an alternative to the well-established practice of Justice, it is appropriate to call this an injustice approach because the result will frequently qualify as injustice from the perspective of the common notions of justice.
I recall the 1990s controversial impeachment of President Clinton due to his committing perjury concerning a sexual impropriety. Prior to the passing of impeachment by the House, there was a widely promoted alternative of censure and move-on. At time time, I supported the impeachment because I felt it was justice for the violation. I did not think then that a passage of censure would be constitutional since it implied a power of the House to chastise the president. The Constitution demands that the distinct branches of government respect each other’s area of authority in such a way that the only permitted remedy in such circumstances is impeachment.
For what it is worth, I am not dissuaded of this interpretation of the Constitution. If the House rejects the Presidency, then it should impeach the President. While the Constitution spells out conditions for impeachment, I accept the notion that the House can choose to impeach for any reason it wants: no normally recognized crime or misdemeanor needs to be committed. If the Senate wants the president removed, it can pass the articles of impeachment and impose the penalty of removal or even the disqualification from ever holding office again. This is a process of Justice even though the crime in question is not a crime in a normal sense.
However, even at the time of the 1990s impeachment process, I would have liked there to have been an option to merely censure and move on. This is the injustice model. Assuming the crime of perjury was sufficient for justice by impeachment, then choosing to not impeach is a failure of justice, or an injustice. Despite that, the injustice would have been the wiser approach. I suppose the same was achieved by having the impeachment but having the Senate failing the pass it, except that the process took too long.
A government by data and urgency would have chosen a quick censure and then move on to other topics. The process would accept the impression that the crime of perjury was not fully punished to extract full justice in the matter because justice in this sense is not a priority or even a goal. Meanwhile, there censure would have changed the data for further governing. In particular, it was a government led by a President found to have committed perjury.
The key priority of government by data and urgency is to resolve an injustice as expeditiously as possible in order to focus on other urgent topics. If there were no other urgent topics, then such a government would opt to take a recess rather than to extract some more perfect justice on a case that was adequately addressed with the earlier agreement.
A government by data and urgency rejects of the priority of absolute justice. This dismissal can free such a government to be more effective for solving modern issues such as the debt, the environment, international policies, etc. Modern data technologies make such a government feasible and challenges facing modern governments need a different approach than what had worked in the past.
All that said, my descriptions of processes for resolving injustice are simplified. In practice, such processes are more complicated in the context of repeated behaviors with different victims. In the case of repeated offenses, it is not sufficient to resolve each individual case with a simple settlement between the parties.
In analogy to recent sexual assault accusations coming out of entertainment and politics, there is a need to resolve the injustice of the repeated offenses by an individual or by many individuals belonging to some common group. Such cases present new offenses that need a resolution to the injustice that cascades from the repeated offenses of individuals. The parties in these cascaded injustices elevate to groups.
At some point, the repeated offenses begin to offend the group as a whole. This offense cascades upwards toward ever larger groups.
In the analogy of the recent sexual controversies coming out of Hollywood, the repeated behavior by one individual results in the group ostracizing the offending individual even though each of his transgressions were satisfactorily settled individually. When it emerges that the group is not adequately policing itself, that offends an external group such as one part of the industry versus another. This becomes a new injustice requiring a settlement between groups.
This process of cascading continues with every larger groups demanding some type of settlement from the other group. As we see in modern political discourse, the grievances have escalated beyond even political parties so that the perceived injustices are between the sexes, the skin-colors, the sexualities, the age groups, etc.
As I write this, it appears that the current method of government is incompetent at dealing with cascaded grievances at this level. At the core of this incompetence is the demand for justice in the classic sense of an absolute finding of fact and proper remedy for wrong-doing. At some point, it becomes impractical to pursue the ideal of finding the guilt for the grievances based on full understanding of the facts.
Unfortunately, in the current system of government based on notions of justice has no transition path to consider the approach analogous to the “censure and move-on” option offered during the Clinton impeachment process. Certainly, there have been various attempts at similar remedies to current complaints, but they always fail. That failure is assured by the promise that our government can achieve justice, and thus justice can prevail even over these large conflicts.
Lacking a government means to resolve these grievances, there are only the options of waiting either for the controversies to die down (never to be resolved) or for a resolution by ordeal or violent conflict.
I suppose such an eventuality is assumed in the framing of the constitution in the first place. Some writers of the constitution expressed a confidence that violent revolutions are necessary at certain junctures in history. In other words, there are cases that are beyond human governments to achieve justice, and in those cases require a revolt of some form.
Implicit in western democratic government is the assumption that there will be grievances at such large scales that are beyond the ability of government to achieve a satisfactory justice. The solution offered is a constitutional crisis resolved by a constitutional convention or a violent revolt.
A dedomenocracy is an alternative form of human government that rejects the burden of achieving justice that approximates the ideals of philosophy or religion. Dedomenocracy focuses on data and urgency instead of justice. It can address injustice with urgency using all available data at the time. In place of losing any expectation that such settlements will achieve absolute justice, this government will be far more agile in resolving conflicts. In particular, such an approach scales all the way to the largest level conflicts that are impossible to find an acceptable justice. Dedomenocracy can resolve grievances at all levels with the exact same objective of finding a settlement to a perceived injustice.
Dedomenocracy can give us a government that can stand up to modern challenges: a government of censure and move on.