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Old 04-10-2024, 08:15 PM   #1
GURPSFredo
 
Join Date: Aug 2015
Default Wealth, Status vs. Voting Power

Perhaps, GURPS should give some thought to voting power or Revolution.

Wealth Advantage? Nice!
Status Advantage? Nice!
Reputation Advantage? Nice!

How about some thought about anarchism, syndicalism or socialism?
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Old 04-10-2024, 08:42 PM   #2
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Default Re: Wealth, Status vs. Voting Power

Have you looked at GURPS Social Engineering? Its chapter 5, Moving the Masses, discusses much of what you mention, and provides game mechanics. In particular, it distinguishes between administrative, electoral, and revolutionary politics.

Which kind of anarchism do you have in mind? Your list of alternatives suggests that you may be thinking of communist anarchism, as portrayed in Ursula Le Guin's The Dispossessed, but there is also individualist anarchism and its descendant anarchocapitalism, as portrayed in Vernor Vinge's "The Ungoverned" (inspired indirectly by Robert A. Heinlein's The Moon Is a Harsh Mistress).

Voting power as such does not seem to be an attribute of an individual; it's extremely rare that one person's vote can change the outcome of any election, and even in legislative bodies, rather few bills pass or fail because of a single vote. I don't think I would put it on a character sheet as a trait.
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Old 04-10-2024, 09:24 PM   #3
Fred Brackin
 
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Default Re: Wealth, Status vs. Voting Power

Quote:
Originally Posted by whswhs View Post
Voting power as such does not seem to be an attribute of an individual; it's extremely rare that one person's vote can change the outcome of any election, and even in legislative bodies, rather few bills pass or fail because of a single vote. I don't think I would put it on a character sheet as a trait.
Where the franchise is restricted the right to vote is included in positive Status or prevented by negative Status or Social Stigma.
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Old 04-10-2024, 11:37 PM   #4
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Default Re: Wealth, Status vs. Voting Power

Quote:
Originally Posted by whswhs View Post
Voting power as such does not seem to be an attribute of an individual; it's extremely rare that one person's vote can change the outcome of any election, and even in legislative bodies, rather few bills pass or fail because of a single vote. I don't think I would put it on a character sheet as a trait.
Well, voting power is an indirect indicator of other benefits, because politicians (who want votes) are inclined to make laws that are favored by and beneficial to the voting class. Still, this is generally covered by status.
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Old 04-11-2024, 07:38 AM   #5
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Default Re: Wealth, Status vs. Voting Power

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Well, voting power is an indirect indicator of other benefits, because politicians (who want votes) are inclined to make laws that are favored by and beneficial to the voting class. Still, this is generally covered by status.
Alternately, it could a kind of Rank - ordinary voters might be Political Rank 0, using the Social Engineering span of control values a ward heeler or precinct captain who can reliably order a few hundred of them to vote however he tells them too has Political Rank 3, a city machine Boss who can deliver tens or hundreds of thousands of votes is Rank 7 or 8, regional bosses like Richard Daley or Huey Long who can deliver millions of votes would be Rank 10 or more....

Political rank like this is probably worth around 3/level - it's not unique, the chain of command isn't all that firm, it doesn't control a lot other than votes, though it can deliver some patronage jobs and while not [illegal] usually, it's rarely thought of as particularly legitimate.
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Old 04-11-2024, 08:14 AM   #6
whswhs
 
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Default Re: Wealth, Status vs. Voting Power

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Alternately, it could a kind of Rank - ordinary voters might be Political Rank 0, using the Social Engineering span of control values a ward heeler or precinct captain who can reliably order a few hundred of them to vote however he tells them too has Political Rank 3, a city machine Boss who can deliver tens or hundreds of thousands of votes is Rank 7 or 8, regional bosses like Richard Daley or Huey Long who can deliver millions of votes would be Rank 10 or more....

Political rank like this is probably worth around 3/level - it's not unique, the chain of command isn't all that firm, it doesn't control a lot other than votes, though it can deliver some patronage jobs and while not [illegal] usually, it's rarely thought of as particularly legitimate.
That more or less works in an adult suffrage democracy. If you have a more restricted franchise, it seems that the right to vote ought to be worth a bit more; if, say, only 5% of the population is allowed to vote, that right might be the equivalent of Rank 2?

If you have a manhood suffrage setup (or womanhood suffrage!), on one hand that might be worth a fraction of a Rank step, but on the other it can probably be absorbed into a Social Stigma for the sex that doesn't vote. And similarly for a disenfranchised racial or religious minority.
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Old 04-11-2024, 09:18 AM   #7
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Default Re: Wealth, Status vs. Voting Power

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Originally Posted by whswhs View Post
If you have a manhood suffrage setup (or womanhood suffrage!), on one hand that might be worth a fraction of a Rank step, but on the other it can probably be absorbed into a Social Stigma for the sex that doesn't vote. And similarly for a disenfranchised racial or religious minority.
That's what I would do. "Can't vote" is usually part of a Social Stigma, when voting rights are generally assumed. "Can vote" might be part of a Social Regard if the right to vote is more limited. I can see Social Regard (Noble) for societies where noble bloodlines are recognized legally and socially, but not necessarily an integral part of a well defined socioeconomic hierarchy (which would make it Status), and entitle even the most impoverished of nobles to show up at councils and have a vote.

In a sort of republican theocracy, Clerical Investment could be assumed to give similar rights in the synods and diets that determine the direction of the church/state.
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Old 04-11-2024, 09:39 AM   #8
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Default Re: Wealth, Status vs. Voting Power

With a limited enough franchise, being permitted to vote is more or less the same as being a member of the legislature, and would confer some degree of political rank. But that means an intensely limited franchise, something close to oligarchy.
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Old 04-11-2024, 10:14 AM   #9
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Default Re: Wealth, Status vs. Voting Power

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With a limited enough franchise, being permitted to vote is more or less the same as being a member of the legislature, and would confer some degree of political rank. But that means an intensely limited franchise, something close to oligarchy.
Yeah, I think a typical franchise is unlikely to be worth points (in terms of use in a campaign), but typically there will be more restrictions elsewhere on individuals who lack the franchise, or at least more benefits for those who have it, and those effects are probably covered adequately by Social Stigma for restrictions and Social Regard for benefits. Full citizens in Heinlein's Starship Troopers have their franchise included in Social Regard (Veteran) [5]. Mere civilians don't seem very restricted in game terms* (they can't vote, hold political office, or be a teacher of Moral History and Philosophy; the first as noted is probably a Feature, the second would be Taboo Trait: Political Rank which is also a Feature, and the third is such a small restriction as to also be a Feature), although considering some of them tend to take a bit of pride in not being foolish enough to have risked Federal Service, "Proud Civilian" might be a common Quirk.

*In real world terms, not being able to vote or hold office is a pretty serious restriction, particularly if applied to an entire class of people, as it means you have essentially no say in how your country is governed, how your taxes are spent, etc, and in extreme cases can result in your class gaining a Social Stigma (or even an outright Enemy) due to others voting your rights away. But in game campaign terms, it's just a Feature.
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Old 04-11-2024, 10:22 AM   #10
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Default Re: Wealth, Status vs. Voting Power

What a vote consists of is even worth examining - most of us are used to either voting for a named individual, or a party slate, who then represents us in government.
Compare the Roman system, where although individual magistrates were elected, the senate as a whole was not, nor did the individual voter vote directly for a candidate, but rather as part of his tribe or census class (this, of course, meant that the larger your census class or tribe, the less your vote counted). Individual laws were also passed by popular vote in the same way, rather than churned out in the senate as the modern expectation would suggest.
The Greeks, as I understand it, operated - at least at some points - with every voter being a member of the legislature.
Both, IIRC, were also a qualified franchise and required national service as well as property ownership.

Those are two very different ways of operating and will have different effects on your society.
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