If you are lucky today, you live in a functioning representational democracy. A democracy where people elect their representatives and where those representatives are ethical people, devoted to promoting their constituents’ interests. That means they do their best to keep their electoral promises, are dedicated to the common good and would rather die than accept a bribe, big or small. If you are really lucky, the democratic system you live in is not yet plagued by a combination of wealthy lobbyist investing billions in charming, convincing or coercing your representatives into pushing their greedy agenda and ignore the will of the people.
And if you are really, but really really lucky, your political system is also 100% free of internal power struggles and backroom deals. If this is the case in the place you live in, please, tell us where it is 😊.
Unfortunately, even if you live in a democracy, the dark sides of democracies are an integral part of the system as it is conceived today.
This is because of a structural defect of a system that was conceived and built decades or centuries ago in the best way possible with the technologies available at the time. Two main, and correctable, structural defects are at the root of the problems plaguing new and aging democracies today.
• Ballots can be tampered with, whether through downright ballot stuffing or through voter suppression through various ingenious means or to intimidation at the polling booth.
• There is no way to sanction elected representatives who forget their electoral promises the moment they are elected — or, at best you will have the option of voting them out at the next elections in a few years if you even remember they sold you pipe dreams in the previous round. Even then, that elected representative will face no real consequences for his broken promises.
These cracks in the system allow powerful, but not elected, bodies to push their own interest at the expense of the interest of the voters. Today’s system looks like this
Citizens express their wishes, wants and opinion by voting for the politicians who express views and defends positions close to the voter’s heart. Various lobbies and private interest inset themselves between the voter and the elected representative to push their own interest by any means possible.
As a result, elected representatives are often working more to promote the interests of these private bodies than for those of their voters. Far too often, they make the most of their time in office to gain financial compensations far superior to their emoluments…
With this system, the voter’s only recourse is to wait for next round of elections and vote the corrupt/ineffective/ incapable representative out. Yet, for those who managed to profit financially from their time in office, or to secure a juicy post-electoral professional appointment, being voted out is just a minor setback. They might even be back on the ballot in the next round, trusting voters’ short memory and their own ability to spin anything into a tale serving their image.
Most of the blockchain based voting systems solve only the defects of the voting process itself. That is, they provide an encrypted and incorruptible voting technology that solves a lot of problems linked to the physical process of voting, but does very little to increase the accountability of the elected representative vis-à-vis his or her voters.
Those improved voting system, if implemented, would enable voters who typically cannot physically get to the voting station, either because of geographic distance or due to lack of time, or for any reason, to vote. They would also very likely increase voters’ turn out by making it easy for all to vote from their own home or place of work.
However, they would not solve the problems linked to the lack of real-time oversight of the elected representatives. Once elected, they could still do as they please until the next electoral season.
Coalichain system, however, comes with teeth.
It creates an infrastructure designed to bind politicians to their word.
To ensure accountability, Coalichain relies on one of the blockchain technology tools, the smart-contract. Coalichain leverages smart-contract technology to benefit voters and introduce built-in accountability in the electoral process.
There are many ways to do that and Coalichain is still in the process of building various options to suit various needs, but let’s look at one example.
Imagine that John Smith was elected in 2018 and that the next electoral round is 2022. Yet, by 2019, the vast majority of his constituency is thoroughly disappointed by John Smith’s performance. Luckily for the constituent, the elections were performed with Coalichain and the smart-contract binding John Smith stipulates that he would have to step down if over 75% of his constituents were disappointed with him. It also specified regular checkpoint dates every 6 months, say. This means, every 6 months, constituents would have the option to confirm John Smith’s mandate or, if his approval rate is below 25%, John Smith would have to step down.
This is a very simple example of how Coalichain can bring forth a much-improved democratic process, finally implementing its purpose of having elected representatives representing their electorate without interference from private interests.
It does not describe in the milestone evaluation system that considerably increases the voters’ oversight power and is currently patent pending.
There are other sides to Coalichain, including transparency, fundraising, polling and more, and we have not said anything about the transparency built-in the system, but all these aspects will be broached in further articles.
In the meantime, please join us on Telegram to ask questions and participate in debates.