Étienne Chouard: Public decision-making from the perspective of the common good, Part 5/5

Previously published parts of this essay are the Introduction, Part 1, Part 2, Part 3 and Part 4. (ii) Constitutional workshops, a practical tool for popular education for training a multitude of citizen constitution-writers, guardians of the common good Representative government (falsely called “representative democracy” – a deceptive oxymoron) is a regime of domination of […]

Étienne Chouard: Public decision-making from the perspective of the common good, Part 4

Previously published parts of this essay are the Introduction, Part 1, Part 2 and Part 3. It remains to examine the different applications of sortition in politics: Part II. Comparison of different applications of sortition Having seen how poorly the common good is served by elections and how well it is defended by sortition, we […]

Étienne Chouard: Public decision-making from the perspective of the common good, Part 3

Previously published parts of this essay are the Introduction and Part 1, Part 2. (ii) Elections put the worst in power (whereas sortition does not) Regarding the rulers, by accepting that we need “representatives” we observe often that election among candidates brings into power the worst qualified – the exact opposite of that which it […]

Étienne Chouard: Public decision-making from the perspective of the common good, Part 2

Previously published parts of this essay are the Introduction and Part 1. (i) Elections infantilize, and in this way paralyze, the voters. They discourage thinking and defending the common good (whereas sortition does not) Starting with the governed, let’s see, point-by-point, how elections infantilize, and in this way paralyze, the voters: 1. By definition, elections […]

Étienne Chouard: Public decision-making from the perspective of the common good, Part 1

Background about this essay and its table of contents can be found here. What follows is a comparison of elections and sortition. The essay is divided into two parts. In part I, elections and sortition are compared in terms of general principles. In part II, they are compared in terms of different possible applications. Part […]

Étienne Chouard: Public decision-making from the perspective of the common good: Breaking out of the electoral trap

What follows is the table of contents of a 2016 essay by Étienne Chouard, which Chouard describes as “my most recent methodical comparison between election and sortition”. I will publish my translation to English of the essay in several parts. The original French version is here. Public decision-making from the perspective of the common good: […]

Chouard: An allotted referendum chamber

Etienne Chouard, who has been the most vocal and consistent French advocate for sortition, is having somewhat of a day in the limelight in the context of the Gilets Jaunes protests. Chouard’s other major procedural proposal is the Popular initiative (in french: Referendum d’initiative citoyenne, often referred to as RIC). A major issue with the […]

Antoine Bevort: Chouard and democracy: an intellectual and political fraud

The following is my translation of a recent article Antoine Bevort in the online French publication Mediapart. Like Tommy Lasserre’s Sortition in politics – the false good idea, which appeared in Mediapart two years ago, the article is a critique of Chouard and his proposals. Bevort makes some similar points, but, unlike Lasserre, doesn’t focus […]

Chouard: No democracy without sortition

An interview with Etienne Chouard in Ragemag magazine (translation by Google Translate, with my touch-ups): Is sortition the future of democracy? Sortition is not the future of democracy, it is inseparable from democracy; it is a much stronger link than a chronological phase: there is no democracy without sortition. Chouard also considers the popular initiative […]

Etienne Chouard

I spoke to Etienne Chouard for the first time last night. He recommended the following TED talk he did: It is close-captioned with English subtitles. He also pointed me to the following talk (again in French) which unfortunately does not yet have subtitles: I’ve only watched the first talk, and I must say I think […]