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    How Gold Party might develop

Gold Party is a network of people in the United States (and perhaps elsewhere) who organize for the purpose of taking over the government. It is similar to a political party except that it is intended to facilitate a particular event: a peaceful revolution in which the program of the present plutocracy is replaced by a system that serves the interests of the majority of people and preserves the natural environment. This party may run candidates of its own in elections or it may support candidates of other parties. Membership in it is not exclusive.

If a majority of Americans supported a particular program and organized to put this into effect through the electoral process, they would have their way. Mao Zedong once said that political power comes from the barrel of a gun. Government’s domination of physical violence means it will prevail. On the other hand, no large group of people can be ruled by force alone. The elements of fairness and legitimacy are essential to gaining and maintaining political power on the scale proposed here.

Gold Party’s plan of action does not depend on use of violence but on a scheme of persuasion that aligns the majority of voters behind its program. The persuasion includes personal incentives to strengthen the party. Its unique system of weighted voting provides such an incentive. In that respect, this party deviates from the equal-vote principle of most political parties. It rewards its members unequally according to the contribution they make in building up the party. When the party gains control of government, its system of unequal voting translates into unequal influence in affecting government policy and even into acquiring shares of the society’s wealth.

The Gold Party “revolution” would embrace action that goes well beyond what has attempted in the United States since the late 18th century. At the same time, its changes will take place within the existing legal framework. What is not presently allowed might be authorized through Constitutional amendment. The ultimate aim would be to increase human freedom and material well being while ensuring human survival.

Phase 1  

This is where we are now. Gold Party begins with an idea. The idea needs to gain support in order for its program to be realized. The creation of this website is an important first step.

Now it is necessary for the party to recruit members. The initiators of this party need to talk with their friends and acquaintances about the Gold Party scheme. They need to advertise and hold public meetings. They need to persuade individuals to become members.

Membership involves filling out an application form, signing it, and paying annual dues. The dues can be as low as $0.01 a year. (If a member contributes more, this translates into a larger number of votes). In return, each person who joins Gold Party acquires a personal stake in the organization expressed in terms of a certain number of points that represents voting strength. In that respect, it’s like owning shares of stock in a corporation.

To attract members, Gold Party also needs a program of action in case it should take over the government. In this phase, it's important not to haggle over details but stick together to create a unified organization that can acquire political power. The proposed program would not be written in stone but, instead, be incorporated in a set of proposals that would be independently reviewed once the party is in a position to determine government policy. Additionally, there would be a plan to convert Gold Party points into money, rewarding members individually for their party-building efforts.

 

Phase 2 

The next step would be to organize local Gold Party chapters that would meet on a monthly basis. Gold Party itself would become organized in a network of local groups. Face-to-face meetings are essential to building a political organization. Each local group, or chapter, would elect its own officers according to a system of weighted voting based on Gold Party points. (See point system.)

At a minimum, there would be a chapter president, a vice president, and a membership secretary. The president would be responsible for conducting the monthly meeting and determining the meeting agenda as well as authorizing other activities of the chapter. The vice president, who would assist the president, might also serve as chapter treasurer. The membership secretary would be in charge of maintaining membership records and determining the members’ points. New kinds of points would later be invented and awarded for those who contribute to Gold Party as an organization.

While the purpose of local chapters would be mainly to build membership in Gold Party, they would also seek to create personally rewarding social and informational events for the members. Unlike other political parties that become bogged down in meaningless resolutions and parliamentary maneuvers authorized by Robert's Rules of Order, the Gold Party chapters would have meaningful discussions of issues. The Gold Party program itself would become a prime topic of discussion. What type of society would the members want to create once Gold Party gains political power? What would be their vision of a better future? How thoroughly should Wall Street be plundered? In the meanwhile, the focus would be upon building membership to the point that these dreams can become a reality.

Regional organizations would eventually be formed to embrace the local chapters. Ultimately, Gold Party would have party organizations in all fifty states. It would also have a national organization. The new heroes would be members with the most Gold Party points.

The larger Gold Party organizations would be focused on building media capability. Each regional organization would have its own print newspapers, cable-television shows, web casts, podcasts, radio programs, etc. as well as outreach to the commercial media. Gold Party would thus become capable of communicating directly with the public and building up membership to a point that it can win elections.

 

Phase 3 

Now begins the process of taking over the government. This would happen simultaneously on all levels of government: townships, cities, counties, state, and federal. However, the main effort would be to pass federal legislation, signed into law by the President, that would implement the Gold Party program. If need be, the broadly organized party could also pass Constitutional amendments.

The first step would be for Gold Party to hold a national referendum on each proposal in its party plank. It would not try to influence the outcome one way or another. During the period of organization building, party members would have had ample opportunity to study, discuss, and debate each of the eighteen proposals in its plank. Proposals supported by a majority of votes in this referendum would go on to become legislative proposals passed on with Gold Party endorsement to elected officials. Proposals that did not receive a majority of votes would not be recommended for legislation. The national referendum would be conducted in accordance with the weighted-voting scheme based on the point system. Citizens who are not Gold Party members would also be allowed to vote in this referendum; however, they would have only one point for their vote. The party, not the government, would be administering this referendum.

The crux of the matter is the need to translate Gold Party's adopted agenda into government policy. Gold Party must accomplish its goals through persons elected to public office - primarily, the U.S. President and members of Congress. If these representatives were elected with Gold Party support, they would feel a certain inclination to support the party's agenda. However, certain obstacles stand in the way. First, elections to public office are conducted according to the one person / one vote principle; and there would be no attempt to change this. Second, persons elected to public office have total discretion to support whatever policy they personally prefer; this also would not be changed. However, constituent pressure is always a factor in Congressional decisionmaking. Legislators elected to office with Gold Party support who later reneged on their promises would be vulnerable to defeat in the next election. The fact that the Gold Party agenda was transparent and had been widely debated over a long period of time would create a momentum in favor of its adoption that legislators would find hard to resist. Finally, it would likely be adopted if the program were broadly perceived as reasonable and just.

It follows that much thought and discussion must go into the policy changes that will be sought when Gold Party assumes control of the government. The Gold Party program must be completely transparent. Once consciousness of its program has reached a certain level within society, a legitimate revolution can take place. The people will demand that the plan of action be put into effect.

Phase 4 

This is meant to be a one-time revolution. The fusion of political power with economic power would be only temporary. However, such revolutions are dangerous due to their totalitarian nature. That is why Gold Party should dissolve after its work is done. We would not want political and economic power to be fused indefinitely but heed Lord Acton’s warning that “absolute power corrupts absolutely”. Totalitarian society presents a model for failure.

Therefore, the Gold Party scenario of events should include a process by which government and business power again become separated and new safeguards are developed to prevent the encroachment of one upon the other’s domain. The award of new cash to Gold Party members would stimulate the economy. The ideal of liberty would again become engrained in society.

Gold Party, once disbanded, might then become incorporated in one or another of the existing political parties, basking in memory of its glorious work much as veterans of the Revolutionary War or members of the Grand Army of the Republic were honored by succeeding generations for their contribution to America. This is a revolution fit for our own generation.

 

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