London School Of Economics Wants To Crowdsource A Constitution For The UK

from the fun-discussion dept

We've written a few times about the attempt in Iceland to crowdsource a new Constitution. While that's had some political troubles, despite widespread public support, it seems others are taking note. The folks over at the London School of Economics recently decided it might be a fun thought experiment to see if it would be possible to crowdsource a Constitution for the UK. While many are aware of things like the Magna Carta, which in many ways laid the groundwork for the US Constitution, the UK today does not have a single written constitutional document -- meaning that there is no effective restriction on the UK Parliament's actions (as the US Constitution restricts Congress in the US).

There have been a number of online discussions about ideas for this crowdsourced Constitution on the site linked above, which are worth reading, but recently the LSE held an event to do some of the crowdsourcing live, which they then released as a podcast (on a sidenote: if you're interested in economics or world politics, I highly recommend the LSE podcast). The discussion is well worth listening to. They take a somewhat lighthearted approach to the whole thing, and it gets pretty amusing at a few points, but the discussion is still fascinating, as they debate concepts like whether or not the right to be treated equally belongs in a Constitution (and further, what does the statement even mean). There's also a spirited argument made for not having a Constitution at all (and a rebuttal for why a Constitution would be really helpful).
While it's unlikely that anything actually binding or important will come out of this process, it's somewhat fascinating even to think through the process of making a Constitution, and it's fun to see the LSE attempt to do the whole thing publicly.

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  1. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 15 Oct 2013 @ 4:15am

    People are getting a taste of writing code(laws).
    This may prove useful.

    A good step in the right direction, but not enough I am afraid, we still need to mirror anything governments do in the NGO sector, I avoided using the term private sector here, it conveys the sense of companies, excluding other options like cooperatives, non-profits, etc.

    So when a block goes bad, you exchange that block for another one. Got love Lego.

    These in fact would reduce governments influence over people lifes and hopefully putting costs under control and refreshing the field when it is needed.

    Leave any government agency in place long enough or any agency anywhere without changes and it will start to stink.

    Adverse reaction: Failure to have alternatives may cause crooked bailouts, government brown outs and increased levels of acute lead poisoning.

    My hope is that some countries have reached an education point where they are now capable of doing it, this is not an option in Africa or poor countries in Asia or Latin America, they don't have the massive pool of educated people needed to pull it off.

    Is like software, if you don't have the money to buy it, you start making your own and ask others if they would like to try it and help out.

    We clearly can't compete in price for our sellout actual governants but we can and should be trying to make alternatives to anything that they provide us.

    Armed revolutions are not optimal, you exchange one set of crooks for another the underlying system stays intact, it doesn't change anything, we don't get new proposals for new ways of doing anything.

    Short version:

    I will be bold here and say that there are only 3 ways to get things in this world.

    - buy it.
    - ask for it.
    - make it yourself.

    All have good and bad associated with it, chose wisely and may the cold winds be with you.

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