The Personal Democracy White Paper for ClimateSafe Villages

Review this page only if you are seriously interested and are near to making a final decision about creating a local version of your own or if you want to join one of our four ClimateSafe Village models. If you are browsing or want to get a beginning sense of who we are and what we are doing, we strongly recommend you explore the new ClimateSafe Villages website to more easily introduce you to the many benefits of these unique and now necessary communities.

Please click here to go to our newfar less complex ClimateSafe Village website to start exploring the many positive possibilities.


This vision page provides a high-level overview of a new form of democracy called Personalized Democracy (PD) that addresses the cultural environment of modern society. It was designed using modern “Systems Analysis” methods to capture all the cherished hopes and dreams of past civilizations. The challenge was doing so in the face of the totally new requirements of large populations, overlapping cultures, instant world-side communication, and precise interaction requirements needed for complex technologies. This page takes on the additional challenge of showing how such a complex governing structure was also designed to be manageable for use by everyday people in small communities.

The section titles found on this page are:

1. Introduction to Personalized Democracy for Eco-communities

2. Background: Problems with Current “Democratic” Governments

3. Personalized Democracy – Some Basics

4. The Basic Concepts in Practice

5. Some examples of how it might work in Eco-communities

6. How to introduce Personalized Democracy in small communities

7. Conclusion



1. Introduction to Personalized Democracy for ClimateSafe Villages

World society, as it enters the 21st century, has many serious problems. This paper presents the view that all modern governing forms, including all current democracies, are founded on social and governing models that date to ancient cultures. Those early societies all exhibited the homogeneity of a low-population agricultural community with a single national religion. The technology of the time was simple and mechanical. Every person understood, and could interact with, all of this. Interaction with other cultures was rare. For the Western world of 500 BC, Athenian Democracy fully captured these structures. Tragically, that model of democracy is no longer applicable to a modern world with a very complex, diverse, massive, and completely interwoven global population.

A new form of “democracy” referred to as “Personalized Democracy” was developed to address all these factors of modern society. System Analysis methods were used to capture the highest ideals of cultures around the world over the full timeline of organized civilizations. After extensive modeling, a new social and coordination structure was found that finally describes an approach that can solve most of the inequities and confusions of the modern world. At the same time, it amazingly provides a path to the most cherished goals of “full personal inclusion” and “inherent social harmony” sought, but never achieved, by the original Democracy. 

Before continuing, please click here for a short summary of Personal Democracy benefits

2. Background: Problems with Current Democratic” Governments, Current governments are in serious trouble

The status of world society, as it enters the 21st century, is in serious trouble. This century started with average citizens having access to goods and services that, only a century earlier, were only “pipe dreams.” In less than a day, common people could travel to any corner of the globe in relative comfort. A century earlier, this option was not only unavailable to most people, even the richest couldn’t do it in less than many months, and with great difficulty. These same average people could also talk with people worldwide in an instant, again something not even achievable a century ago. Humans have walked on the moon, and traveled to the deepest floor of the oceans. In advanced cities, shopping “warehouses” are filled with goods from every corner of the globe. 

The internet has also brought access to a great swath of world knowledge for most people. Ironically, there is so much knowledge available, no person is capable of assimilating and understanding more than a small fraction of it. As they encounter new knowledge, they are not easily capable of discerning what is truthful. The free rein of giant corporations to dominate the internet, has allowed them to design programs that control what each person sees. The result is, when political groups want to force people to make decisions about national and regional leadership, they are easily able to selectively push information at every individual in society. This includes information that is purposely untrue and misleading.

Yet, in the face of this immense knowledge explosion, government legislative bodies, like congresses or parliaments, essentially use the same forms of interpersonal interaction that they used 2 centuries ago! That is, they sit down in groups, around large tables, for face-to-face verbal discussions and negotiations.

Because of the prevalence of “majority-rule” democracies in the late 20th century, many Western countries have developed two-party systems. The dynamics of such structures lead most citizens to support one view or the other, with third-party views much less considered. Populations tend to be split about equally between the two-party views. Legislative groups do the same. The same dynamic that divides the viewpoints, unfortunately, leads to both views taking extreme positions. This leads to the implementation of fragmented and often competing programs as the party in power switches back and forth over time. From a citizens’ perspective, the social structure appears to continually have broken parts.

For example, despite the “overabundance” of hard goods now available, about 10% of humans worldwide still live daily with hunger (1), and 28% live in slums (2). In the last decade, in the U.S., students graduating with college degrees find well-paying jobs so hard to find, and the cost of housing so high, they are forced to live with their parents for extended periods. 25% of renters now pay more than 50% of their income on housing. (3) 70% of current homeowners could not buy a new “median price” home in the U.S. (4), and nearly 70% of millennials, at their current level of income, say they cannot afford to even purchase a starter house. At median incomes and expenses, it would take 15 years for them to save sufficient funds for a down payment. (5)

In the face of clear “existential” threats to life quality and liberty worldwide, the same extreme divide is preventing governments across the globe from taking appropriate action. All of this failure to take action, or to implement a rocky road of alternating extreme and ineffective actions is what led to the opening statement of this section.

{ While this paper is focused on democracy, it should be added that the current “siren song” attraction of “authoritarian” leadership will face many multiples of the impact of the knowledge explosion due to the inability of any single person to make complex decisions.}


The foundation for current democracies

Democratic governments in modern society are derived from the governing principles of Athenian Democracy and the Roman Republic. Citizens of these modern governments believe their democratic forms “vest power in the people,” as the term “democracy” implied in Greek. But this is far from the actual situation. In addition to this common misbelief, pronouncements from leaders of these modern governments reinforce the belief. The strife of America’s Civil War, for example, relied on this democracy myth, assured by the words of Abraham Lincoln, “a government… OF THE PEOPLE, BY THE PEOPLE, FOR THE PEOPLE.”

The internet now allows people worldwide to examine and compare the processes of governments throughout history and in current times. Such an examination produces very different observations.


The social environment in Athens, Greece – 550 BC

The first examination might be to compare a modern democracy to the democracy that was originally created in Athens, Greece, in 550 BC. As a basis, it is important to understand the social environment of Athens itself.

At that time, most of the population were farmers and soldiers. When there was no war going on, the soldiers also worked on the farms. This means:

  1. The lives they lived were based on similar interactions with the environment and each other.
  2. They all understood the principles of growing and processing food. They all understood the functions of the simple tools they used for farming and how to make most of the items needed for personal use, like clothes, transportation, and housing.
  3. In addition, nations at that time all had a “national religion”. In Greece, this was the belief in the gods of Mount Olympus, the world those gods created, and the interactions expected of humans with those gods.
  4. It was also common at that time for nations to be “ruled” by a king or queen, who would prescribe a “singular” set of social rules to be followed!

The key importance of these four factors is to realize that the entire population had a very uniform structure for their social beliefs.

In 550 BC, the Athenian population no longer believed that the unitary decision-making and control by a king fairly represented the wishes of the people. They didn’t, however, challenge the fact that their social order could be described by a single set of rules that all should follow. Their agreement was broad enough that they were able to convince the then-current ruler, Cleisthenes, to restructure decision making as a “joint effort” with the populace. They called the new system of coordination “Democracy,” which translates: “strength of the people”.

A major observation to draw from these factors is that, when there were disagreements about social policy between what the king wanted, and what the society wanted, the basic factors to be considered were very well understood by all parties, and the options to be considered were largely constrained by the simplicity of their common lives.

It is also important, however, to clarify that at that time, the term “people” did not mean “all” people. It only meant the “adult” leaders of land-holding families, and soldiers, who, at the time when decisions were raised, were also working on the farms. This further constrained the range of options.

Another factor was the population size. In 550 BC, the entire population of the Athens area was about 200,000 people. These were divided into 10 “tribes.” Each tribe was allowed to select 50 representatives for their democratic process (the council of 500). This meant, each representative, represented about 40 “people” (i.e., the owner or soldier per farm) who had a “world view” very similar to his own, as well as to all the other representatives. For Athens, all of these people were also located close together. Athens would typically call together an “Assembly” of the representatives every week! The Assembly was open to all citizens, and drew an attendance of up to 60,000 for important questions! Note, this was 30% of the entire population of voting “people.”

The way Athens chose to make decisions for issues that were raised was through the process we call “voting” using “majority rule.” The purpose of the detailed description above for Athenian society is the importance of being able to visualize such a “majority voting” process in the context of the homogeneity, simplicity, and small localized population of the society. 

When a decision was needed to resolve a social issue, no matter what that decision was:

a.) it wasn’t going to force anyone to change their role in society much from the social structures already in place. 

b. ) No matter what the issue to be discussed was, everyone in the society had most of the knowledge needed to understand all the implications of the decision and any options presented. 

c.) No matter what option was presented, it could usually be constructed to minimize the impact on, or even to compensate those impacted, if the decision did not favor them.


The social environment in the U.S. at the time of its founding in 1786. 

At the time of the U.S. revolution against the government of King George of England, the social conditions in the American colonies were not much different from those just prior to 550 BC in Athens. Most people were farmers. The technology of farming and industrial equipment was not much more complex. The speed and technology of communications and travel, being based on the horse, were similar and family structures, including slavery, were not much different. And while there was no specification of a single “national” religion, most people followed the similar fundamental beliefs of various versions of “Protestant” Christianity - even if there was constant argument among them over details.

This means, ironically, when the Revolution occurred, the formation of the new U.S.A. as a “Democracy” was made under social conditions very similar to those in Ancient Greece! This included the similarity of the first 13 colonies to the 10 tribes of Athens. The population of the Colonies, for sure, was a lot bigger - 2.5M. Because of the much greater geographical spread, and time needed to travel for a “democratic” meeting, however, it was not possible to directly involve the high percentage of citizens that Athens could, or address issues as quickly as a one-week cycle. Despite these differences, the 4 key foundations of “Athenian” democracy listed above could still be achieved. The constitutional government established at that time could therefore, “still,” be considered, and conducted, in the form of an “Athenian Democracy” fashioned as a republic.


The social environment of modern society

The modern world is now radically different from that of ancient Athens. Specifically, we can no longer describe any modern population as “mostly” farmers! The number of “employment” roles for citizens is now counted as many thousands or even millions! These vary from farmers to astronauts, from house painters to Olympic event planners to neuro surgeons. This diversity scatters individuals into living conditions ranging from small homes in rural towns with a single country store, that they rarely move from, to diverse specialists, who are always on the move and fly around the world continually. If some social decision is placed before the public for a vote, the impact on many of these lives can be drastic!

Along with the huge variety of employment and life roles, our world is now filled with an explosion of products and technology. To coordinate the use of these items, our society has also been flooded with very complex processes and institutions.

We must now admit, no matter what issue is presented to the public for discussion, NO ONE in the society will have the knowledge needed to understand all the implications or consequences of the decision and the related options presented! In fact, most people will not even be able to understand the highest-level summaries of the issues or their related consequences. In addition, we now have a massive breakdown in modern communications from a rapid-fire saturation of poorly informed voices, and a media filled with outright lies and deception.

The result is, modern society can no longer even pretend to have a population where every person has the knowledge needed to understand the implications of the decisions and options presented to them. The “common knowledge” in all world societies, has become insufficient to either understand the complexity of most issues presented, or the impacts of any option presented on every other person. It is now impossible to construct any broad options that reliably maximize the positive impact on most citizens and minimize the negative impact on the smallest number. Instead, average people, elected to be in charge, use their power to install their own “limited knowledge” agendas, or, even worse, “punish” those with opposing views.

In summary, the great promises of “Democracy”, in the vision and version developed in Ancient Athens, can no longer even come close to working in the modern world. Ironically, the same analysis completely applies to, and is even more detrimental to, any attempt at forming an “authoritarian government” where decisions are in even few hands. 


3. Personalized Democracy – Some Basics, The overarching goals

The social framework called Personalized Democracy (PD) was developed, using methods called “Systems Analysis,” to specifically achieve the following high-level goals:

  1. Create an entirely new social model that captures the “fundamental hopes” of Athenian Democracy, as well as the highest universal moral codes that have existed throughout history.
  2. Uncover any critical flaws in these past universal moral codes, as well as in humanity’s fundamental institutions, that have blocked the achievement of a high level of shared prosperity and equity.
  3. Ensure that none of the new principles being developed would reintroduce any of the discovered flaws or current world problems into the conditions or environment of an anticipated new world.

The outcome of the initial historical review effort produced the following fundamental social goals:

  1. Life decisions for the entire society must include the direct involvement of every individual for both the structure of society and the implementation of that structure for each individual. 
  2. New characteristics of the modern world that have never existed before must be addressed:
  3. large population size and density
  4. advanced, widespread, and pervasive technologies
  5. a scope that includes the entire world
  6. the hard realization that humanity must live within the limited stocks of natural resources
  7. the technologies of telecommunication and transportation have spatially and non-uniformly merged cultures all around the world. , What were formerly isolated beliefs about religion, social structures, and social ideals, are now viewed by youth and young adults around the globe against an endless sea of alternatives and contradictions.
  8. Logic, based on the truths of material reality, must be used as the ultimate guideline for action. Only human action can be relied on to achieve results.

To successfully guide any new society toward conditions of sustainable and equitable living, any new set of principles must address all of the previous issues, simultaneously, and in great depth.

Based on these fundamental goals, the following guidelines and changes were seen to be necessary:

  1. Since most of the structures of current democracies have been implemented using the principles that addressed the social conditions in ancient Athens, and not the modern world, to be workable, any future government structures must redesign the existing forms.
  2. All social planning must be based on future-looking dynamic system models, not models that only look at the past and project future trends based on the past.
  3. While nationalism and spiritual organizations should be shown “respect” for positive roles they have formerly played, no “element” of such beliefs can be tolerated that prescribe harm to any other organization of society at both national and global levels.
  4. The need to ultimately depend on logic and truth-based material reality does not mean the views of religion or intuition must be excluded from consideration. Supernatural views, or intuition, may not, however, take precedence over material reality as the final determinant.
  5. Modern life has become so complex, it is no longer possible to address any problem, with broad social implications, in isolation. Since almost every form of the current legislative process still uses an isolation approach – education bills, budget bills, job bills, etc. – society’s entire approach to legislation must be changed to an integrated system analysis method involving many qualified people with the correct skills, education, and experience for the issues at hand.


Factors That Personalized Democracy Must Correct 

This part describes key elements of current governance that Personalized Democracy would replace.

We have to give up majority rule and voting

While most people believe these processes are the only way to make decisions for society, and believe majority rule is a basic principle of life, it isn’t. It was just a convenient and practical simplification for the social conditions of ancient Athens. The system analysis review of past moral codes revealed new solutions.

In critiques of democracy, “majority rule” has been criticized as actually just producing a “tyranny of the majority.” That is, once 51% or more of a population decides on some policy, those not in this group are “forced” to accept that policy against their wishes. For the minority, it appears they are living under an autocracy. This is a problem because it directly conflicts with society’s desire that each individual still has personal freedom. To date, society has not been able to resolve this contradiction. This is especially true for the protections collected in documents with labels like a bill of rights. It is especially problematic in the hands of functions like “supreme courts,” where the agreement of such a small group of people overrules the “rights” of millions!

We have to give up two-party systems

The occurrence of such systems – 2 political parties; 2 houses of parliament – is a fluke of the 51% majority concept. With the “51% wins” rule, all one of the 2 groups needs to do is work extra hard to reach that 51% level. They can then use this narrow 1% advantage to restrain the other group to 49% or less. This approach was designed into governments through a process referred to as a “spoils systems”. It is another throwback to the model of ancient wars, where the winner would “erase” the leadership of conquered nations.

Once there are two parties in place, it is “assumed” that each would produce a legislation “bill” that favors its members, and a “vote” would be taken to choose one for implementation. Each of these “bills” can contain many provisions, hundreds in some cases. Because the provisions for each bill will favor its own members, however, the result will be two very different bills. When a vote is taken, and one bill is chosen, its “collection of provisions” is very likely to be mostly or completely unwelcome to many in the other group. 

Furthermore, in modern society, because of the large differences among millions of individuals, there will be elements in any chosen bill that offend many people in both groups!

A first thought for a solution might be to increase the number of parties. In many countries, that is the case. It is a better approach, but still falls short because social diversity is so high, and handling the multiple parties introduces other problems, like consent as power-seeking.

Personalized Democracy replaces both of these approaches by adopting a very strong support for diversity and inclusion of everyone! That is, by intention, PD expects very wide differences in people’s attitudes, including on an individual-by-individual basis. So, rather than having any political parties that develop only two or a few alternative bills for representatives to choose from, PD again applies the process of systems analysis. In this application, however, it views every individual citizen as their own political party.

Because of modern computer systems, the promises of Personal Democacy’s benefits are attainable. Here is how it will work.

In practice, the Personal Democracy systems analysis process is organized at the highest levels as one single oversight process. That highest level process is actually composed of many smaller “subsystem” processes, each with a different technical or economic focus as needed. Those combined processes, working together, would be able to find “optimal” solutions for the interaction of millions of individual requests, desires, or needs at the same time.

To make this new system work, for every situation in an individual’s life that involves the larger community, that individual would be expected when needed to describe their personal condition and viewpoints to the “coordinating” system. Those personal condition and viewpoints inputs would then be routed to all the subsystems area that need them for the collective planning and implementation processes.

What is eventually produced would be a set of guidelines for each individual that best captures their entire set of conditions and viewpoints on a viewpoint-by-viewpoint basis! The following example should help make this more clear.

If you are a young student, living in a desert climate, interested in reading and music, with goals to be a rock star, these and many other details about your life would be entered with the Personal Democracy system. In return, you would be given a set of suggestions for alternatives to follow to best walk that life path. In coordination with each suggestion for your “life plan,” arrangements would be reserved with private and system services to help you through each step in the plan. The system will continually follow your progress and adjust to any changes you request, at every step. 

As another example, if you were an older “senior” living in the north woods, interested in art, gardening, and travel, you would also periodically update your “life plan” on the system. A very different set of Personal Democracy-related life plan suggestions would be provided. In fact, no two individuals would be expected to be given the same life plan guidance.

In summary, each individual would have given up the process we call “voting,” which is a: “one-way” transfer; of a “single opinion,”; a very simplified opinion selected from only a few options; that only occurs as a single vote every few years”; and where the single “opinion” is mashed together with millions of other opinions.

In return, with Personal Democracy, they would get a: “two-way” interaction; that accepts an unlimited number of opinions and observations; expressed in complex and interactive form; without limitations as to scope; on a continual basis; and where collective and individual action is taken on every one on a completely individualized basis!

Furthermore, to ensure that actions are being taken in response to their inputs, the system will continually check with the individual to determine how well their viewpoints are being respected. This continual feedback system will also provide supporting information to explain how the suggestions and opportunities being provided represent the “best” opportunities that can be provided within the sustainable conditions of life and culture.

A question that often arises after readers see this explanation is, “how will people ever find the time to enter and update all this information?” The answer is for each of us to realize how much data we already manage to conduct our lives and that the needed information can be added to the system piecemeal as situations arise, or all at once, much like what we already do. 

For example, if a person wants to drive a car, they provide and frequently update a lot of identification information. If they want a bank loan, they provide a lot of financial information. Every year, to pay income taxes, we provide a huge amount of data. To visit a doctor, we provide extensive amounts of personal information. In a well-organized and coordinated world, we wouldn’t be required to keep reentering this information.

We have to change the roles of representatives

The current “representative” system is a broad failure. First, the representatives do NOT know the viewpoints of most of those they “represent.” They predominantly “represent” only a handful of extremely rich people who are their major financial supporters. For those contributors, they still only express and act on a very small number of issues.

Personal Democracy changes the role of representatives to that of a “social philosopher-interpreter.” That is, a PD representative would actually be charged with knowing the “spirit” of their community in a detailed way: what defines it, the range and number of similar viewpoints within it. They would be selected for skills interpreting such knowledge between the community and the global coordinating system. Their role becomes more like an ambassador and highly respected teacher and coordinator for their community. They would also work directly and indirectly with those qualified experts who had the needed education, skills, and experience with the issues being discussed and managed. 

We have to change the expectations now placed on individual citizens for their role in social coordination

It is often said that the foundation of democracy relies on “educated” voters. In Athens, in 550 BC, that was actually possible because of the uniformity and technical simplicity of the society. Modern society has now become so complex that this is no longer even remotely possible, especially in the face of corruption in governments, the media, and academia. No one, in any community, now has the knowledge or brain power to comprehend all the elements of society that must be dealt with. Furthermore, they can’t even begin to visualize how all those elements interact with each other, and with all the people on the planet.

A disaster arises when the political arena tries to convince individuals that, through voting, they have the responsibility to choose the “right” person to save the world from disaster. The psychological stress this places on individuals is devastating. Violent actions taken by groups who get caught up in that propaganda cause harm to many people.

With PD, every citizen would only be expected to take on a role that represents their true impact on the world. They would only expect to understand how to help themself, and those people they know, to achieve their best level of well-being and social achievement within the framework of global sustainability, social equity, and social stability. Understanding the “large” issues that impact global society would still be encouraged. Activism related to these issues would actually be supported. But with much higher levels of global knowledge and cooperation available, the crises that pervade current society would mostly be gone. So individuals would be able to take meaningful steps for involvement in global issues, with clear knowledge of the value of their contributions.


4. The Basic Concepts in Practice

The new practices that Personal Democracy would bring to society relate to how community members interact with each other and jointly manage their common goals and efforts. This is especially so for small communities. The major ways the previous observations would be implemented are as follows.

1. The concept of LEADERSHIP” would change

In current thinking, people always envision a “leader” as someone with power. When someone has a problem with a product, their first thought is to contact the “president” of the company to get action. What those individuals are actually trying to achieve is to comfort their minds by believing that they can manipulate the “president’s power” through personal contact.

Giving up this illusion is hard for modern individuals to comprehend, especially for a small community, because such a structure has been baked into human brains for millions of years. It has to be evolved into something better, for the reasons described above, because of modern complexity. When we do see such misuse of power, it is usually observed as corruption.

For a group’s interactions with the outside world, a member would be chosen from time to time to wear a “speaker’s badge.” Regarding community activities, however, this role would specifically be that of a community “coordinator - spokesperson” (as described previously.)

To make this easier to visualize, in a typical community, at least the following additional area specific “coordinators” would ALSO be needed: medicine, psychology, fire, home upkeep and repair, finance, banking, employment / HR, law, education, recreation, electricity, communications, sewer, water, agriculture, purchased food, purchased equipment, land use, and transportation. When questions came up, or decisions were needed for those specialties, the specialty coordinator would be expected to speak first for them. Ultimately, however, actions would depend on the views of all community members.

This raises the questions, “What about the “direction” of the community? Without a “leader,” isn’t the community just blowing in the wind?” In a Personal Democracy community, the directional “leadership” is not established by a person. It is established by a document! Such a document would typically be referred to as a social contract. Every person, including children, who joins a community, and is able to read and reason, would only be allowed to join if they freely agreed to, and signed the community contract. 

2. The concepts of voting and majority rule would be replaced

Voting: Because each of the categories listed above represents such technical specialties, in almost every case, the members of the community will not have sufficient background in the category to make important decisions about it. They also wouldn’t be able to meaningfully select individuals to lead such positions. So, the idea of “voting” for candidates is no longer meaningful. The way individuals would be chosen as area-specific coordinators would be more like current methods in companies or institutions. This is, they are chosen based on demonstrated background criteria. For the position of community Legal Counsel, for example, as a minimum, they must have “legal” credentials. For a “Public health” leader, they must have some level of “medical” credential. During the early stages of a community, it may be necessary to pay an “outsider” to play the role of a consultant to the community.

Majority Rule: One of the cornerstones of Personal Democracy is the acceptance of diversity. Along with “voting” to elect individuals, current society presents a lot of cases where “issues” are presented for a vote. In those cases, there is a presumption that there is a group of people, who want to do something, that another group doesn’t want to do. This is the traditional way that minorities were suppressed. A community designed as a PD would never encounter this situation.

PD handles this in a number of different ways. The first attempts to manage it through the “Social Contract” by the acceptance provision that all members must strongly accept diversity. Any appearance of minority discrimination or suppression would not be tolerated or accepted.

The second way is by respecting the competence of credentialed or experienced specialists. If an unexpected “water” issue arose, for example, the first approach would be to ask the water specialist to find or create a process that automatically provides the answer based on natural conditions and individual user needs and views. That is, this is not a “human” preference decision. It is based on natural factors.

A third approach would be to let other related specialists get involved, all the way up to letting all of the specialists be involved. Again, they are not involved to make the decision through “personal” choice. They are involved to find quantitative natural criteria that determine the answer. If that fails, another process at the scientific research level would obviously be needed.

The proposed qualified expert solutions would then be referred back to all members of the community for further comment, and to have community members propose personal consequences of such recommendations that might not have been considered. This way, the expert coordinators could adjust their plans once again.

What should be clear after these three examples, is that, the traditional way of letting people with minimal skills make the decision makes very little sense. 

All of these example approaches would also include considering diversity as a goal. That is, when an issue arises, a solution to explore would always be, “Why can’t it be handled through diversity? Why has the “issue” been defined in such a way that there appears to be only 2 or 3 solutions? Etc.?”

3. Direct Social Coordination

One of the major benefits of Personal Democracy is how it improves overall social coordination. As stated above, for every situation in an individual’s life that involves the larger community, as a situation arises, that individual would be expected to submit details about their personal condition and social viewpoints to one of the appropriate “coordination groups.” This would be done using the most efficient methods available to each person. Automated processes available in the groups would produce suggestions and connections to help the individual achieve their life goals. Social “coordination” is automatically produced by the overall interaction of all these group processes working together. Acceptance of the “flow” of society results because the criteria that guides the automated processes is fully transparent to all citizens and based on the principle that its foundation includes, and tries to achieve simultaneously, the values and well-being of every individual citizen.

4. The Social Contract

A concept called the “Social Contract” was mentioned above as a requirement for participation for every member of the community. That document would be the “guiding structure” that defines the requirements of interaction between all members. During the process of developing PD, a list of 10 principles emerged that would form the basis, and sections, of the Social Contract:

  1. Quality of Life
  2. All organizations exist to benefit individuals
  3. Respect individual thinking, not conclusions
  4. Rewards in proportion to social contribution
  5. Sustainable world, sustainable society
  6. Efficiency to support sustainability
  7. Beauty throughout human environments
  8. Personal, family and society development
  9. Respect logic and material reality
  10. Understand Human Psychology, Evolution, and History
  11. All individual and community freedoms have corresponding individual and community responsibilities

The key concepts behind the development of the principles shown in the list can be summarized as follows.

While humans have many differences, there are commitments to certain procedural universals which must be followed as fundamentally necessary. These are referred to as social constants. One of the more important constants is the recognition that, to form a civilization, shared attitudes, beliefs, and values are needed. This has been a basic but unstated justification for governments to force society to follow common sets of principles. They did it by creating common sets of laws, which commanded specific behaviors.

Current forms of democracy, however, have followed only one piece of this model. That is, there are no substantive universals in democracy. This means, democracy is simply a process for establishing laws to compel action. It is not a process that understands or expresses specific principles. For a society to operate in harmony, it must understand this distinction thoroughly and find new and appropriate principles that guide both needed processes and values.

The understanding of the effect of complexity and technology on Athenian democracy led to the new process steps described above. But that wasn’t enough. To arrive at these 11 principles, the process required using Systems Analysis methods to review: the history of humanity’s successes; the basic goals of worldwide peoples; and the failures of past empires. 

While The Principles, as stated here, are presented as simple statements, they are only “labels” to represent concepts that are very far from simple. It is therefore important that readers prevent the same mistake of oversimplification that has occurred in the interpretation of many foundational documents like the U.S. Declaration of Independence, the U.S. Constitution, Christian and Jewish Bibles, the Koran, the Hindu and Buddhist books, and the teachings of Confucius.

For each of the 11 sections that these principles create in the Social Contract, an explanatory document like a “constitution” would also be needed to expand the Social Contract into structures of laws that can be acted on appropriately by different peoples around the world to get very different results appropriate for their local situation. This point needs to be emphasized. The process of describing principles and constitutions does NOT lead to only one result. It has been specifically designed to respect one of its own basic principles: diversity. It would take all of these documents, when viewed together, to essentially define “multiple” appropriate moralities for a new global civilization that would also work at national, state, city, and local community levels as well.

An expanded title for each principle is shown here, with a short note. Again, even as shown here, they are only generalized summaries:

Principle 1: Society shall respect and protect the Quality of Life (QoL) for each individual. That is, this new Principle turns the focus of a new society away from the distraction of “solidifying government power,” to understanding the goals of life for each individual on our planet.

Principle 2: ALL ORGANIZATIONS created by society are for the benefit of the individuals in the society. That is, every organization in society must be organized for the primary benefit of the individuals in the society, not the other way around.

Principle 3: Respect for individual thinking but not individual conclusions. While the “right” of each individual to “think” whatever they want, would still be “respected,” what they “conclude,” and specifically, “what they say or express,” is no longer unlimited. In fact, every statement or expression a person makes would be weighed according to the other principles.

Principle 4: Rewards in proportion to social contribution. This principle recognizes an inherent human need for motivation to produce effort. It also recognizes that each individual shares their space and activity on the planet with many others. It also recognizes the need to replace luck, which is an unearned reward, with the reliability of results, which are earned through effort and wisdom. 

Principle 5: Sustainable world, sustainable society. This principle forces societies to use system methods and scientific measurements to plan their actions for long-term sustainability with respect for the ecosystems in which they live.

Principle 6: Efficiency to support sustainability. This requires the application of system analysis to minimize waste in both material and effort. When done in harmony with Principle 1, the human benefit is greatly increased. And with the application of wise efficiencies in a sustainable productivity there are surpluses for charity and unexpected emergencies.

Principle 7: Beauty should be captured throughout human environments. To understand this, consider the images of the architecture of the ancient world. Why has humanity replaced this with slums and miles of “strip malls”? Why have we “paved paradise to put up parking lots”?

Principle 8: Responsibility for personal, family, and local society development. A primary goal for all community level actions would be to understand how to nurture value in personal, family, and social efforts for how social coordination benefits all people.

Principle 9: Respect logical thinking based on material reality. This principle rejects organizing society in any way that relies on appeals to magic, superstition, human intuition, or supernatural interventions, without proof based on tangible and verifiable natural observations. It also prevents an individual or group from imposing their views on others.

Principle 10: Understand Human Psychology, Evolution, and History. This stresses the need for society to study, in a formal and global way, the immense and often negative impact that human psychology, evolution and history has in shaping the behaviors that create human culture. New wisdom that results from these studies should be incorporated into the guiding principles that shape world culture. Understanding human psychology, evolution, and history is also critical to understanding how to avoid the mistakes of the past and how to create a better future.

Principle 11: Understand that all individual and community freedoms have corresponding and equal responsibilities. This principle also creates healthy boundaries for others and the community. This principle is essential for individual and community peace, stability, and growth.

In summary, this set of 11 fundamental principles was developed to build a new foundation for a new society. These principles capture the wisdom of the great sages of history and the discoveries of underlying flaws that caused modern society’s collapse. While superficially appearing to be simple common wisdom, they are actually a rigorous system derived by applying System Analysis design methods to over 3600 vital concepts related to social harmony. The results provide answers to many of the enduring questions of the ages. They also lay out a path to understanding the major social puzzles of our time and eliminate the world insanity we are living with.

5. New level of RESPONSIBILITY” for civic knowledge and action placed on citizens

Personalized Democracy brings major new recognition for each individual in society. This recognition is personal to them, allowing each to be heard, and their voice to carry high weight in establishing policy for the community. It should be clearly obvious that, having been given this new visibility and respect, there should also be a reciprocal element of “responsibility.” In fact, principle 4 of the 10 fundamental principles says right out: Rewards in proportion to social contribution. In short, this means, by accepting membership in the new community, each person must stand up for their contribution of responsibility.

In the full description of Personalized Democracy, the book goes into this concept in depth. It especially addresses principle 10: Understand Human Psychology Evolution and History. That is, recognizing that all humans have psychological traits based on evolution, that don’t always make it easy to take on responsibility, a successful implementation of PD requires that many cultural practices will be needed to make “responsible” decisions easier to make.  

A quick example might help visualize this. This need has been recognized from the dawn of time. We actually see it quite frequently. In ancient societies, titles were given to people who held significant roles. In recent times, where authoritarian rule existed, there were titles like kings, queens, dukes, earls. In the military, there are ranks also identified by titles: general, major, corporal, sergeant, etc. Each of these had visual identifiers like stripes worn on the shoulder, or stars for hats.

It is also common for institutions to give out awards for special performances. An example is the Oscars for movies and Emmys for TV shows. Personalized Democracy adopts similar programs, but in much greater variety. Most important, however, they are “never” associated with either money or power, always with “social contribution”. This process, along with others, hopefully, will help every individual find social responsibility something of high value.

5. Some examples of how Personalized Democracy might work in Eco-communities

In this section, a number of examples are given to show how current practices might change under Personalized Democracy (PD).

Decisions for community action

Under PD, the concept of “voting” to make decisions would no longer be used. Instead, the new PD process would be used. For each issue that arises where the need for some change is suspected, a task would be created for an appropriate coordination team to determine or develop an understanding of why the need came up at all. That is, why, based on existing scientific and operational analysis, an answer wasn’t already obvious? Understanding this explanation may best be seen using an example.

Presume the community is planning a climate information rally for an upcoming weekend. Two reasonable choices are apparent: next weekend or the following weekend. In current society, getting this answer might be done by calling a “vote.” The weekend getting the most votes would win. PD takes a very different approach.

A coordinating group involved with “climate information outreach planning” would typically pull out an event planning guidebook. Such a guide would have a section titled: “How to choose the date for an event.” It might have a consideration like number of people available for each date. But it might also have many other considerations listed as well:

  • Do any of the possible dates conflict with other events?
  • Does the later date provide more time that would be critical for planning or advertising success?
  • Does the earlier date benefit from surprise, etc?

A good guidebook would also suggest methods to evaluate each of these answers. This is the first point at which community members participate in the decision. Every member of the community would be asked their opinion about many factors: which date could you attend? Do you have any contributions for the following 4 approaches? Do you have any additional suggestions for approaches? Do either of the days conflict with a personal event you have planned? If you had more time to plan or prepare, would it help with your involvement? If we had the rally the first week, can you think of how this might be made a surprise? 

The initial choice made would then be sent back to the community members for additional feedback and to add any missed consequences that that date might have on that member.

Using all the information provided, the process outlined in the guide would actually make the choice! If a simple “voting” approach were used, it would exhibit the typical flaws of voting: voter ignorance of an issue’s complexity; voters responding through emotions they aren’t even aware of; the volume of votes for or against not being the most significant factor for success; etc.

With the PD process, the outcome would always be very different. Each community member would be provided with options that apply, directly, to them personally. For example, Mary Smith might get the following example reply:

Mary. Thanks for your input. It appears you can go either day. People you’ve already attended rallies with are more available for the second weekend. The advantages of that weekend are a, b, c, etc. However, it appears many members would like to go both weekends. In that case, here are the advantages and possible plans for the first weekend as well.

Notice the differences that this approach presents:

  1. The elements of only 2 choices are not predetermined by some small groups of representatives for reasons that benefit them.
  2. Because no vote is involved, even if the weekend of choice for a majority of the members is not what you would have chosen, a program that supports your choice has also been developed.
  3. The program that has been provided for you to join addresses every input you provide on an individual basis with an attempt to include that input. 

Decisions for selecting representatives

One of the most common applications for voting in current society is the election of “representatives.” The fundamental purpose of such a role is simple. The person selected is expected to present to some legislative body, accurate and comprehensive summaries of the views of those they represent. This, however, is never done! 

Instead, the citizens of some “geographical” area, are presented with a number of “candidates” to choose from. Each citizen is expected to pick “one” candidate they believe will best represent their interests. When this candidate later acts as a representative for them, the candidate is then only expected to express mostly to only their own viewpoint. This approach has led to widespread corruption through the “buying” of candidates by special interests and “gerrymandering” of election areas.  

PD completely eliminates both forms of corruption, by accurately implementing the fundamental purpose of having representatives to begin with. But it goes one step further. It directly collects every view of each individual, and inserts that view directly into the processes that representatives were supposed to accomplish. Understanding this explanation may best be seen using an example.

Presume a community is doing an expected update on how transportation of children will be done for “social group schooling.” Because education would look very different under PD, this example focuses only on one aspect: bringing students from their homes to a centralized learning environment. Such decisions are now typically made by elected representatives called “school boards.”

With PD, all educational activities would be organized by a qualified and experienced educational coordination group. The members of this group are not elected. They are paid or unpaid professionals with extensive training in coordinating and delivering educational activities and extensive knowledge or experience on the educational subject. Instead of members of this group meeting to discuss and decide on plans, the entire foundation of the process is direct information provided from every member of the community – including the students themselves! As in the previous example, the coordinators do not come together to present their personal knowledge. 

They turn to a large collection of education planning guides. From that large collection, they gather the appropriate guides for the size, culture, and geography of the community. The guides would provide a large number of questions that each community member would be asked to address, possibly when they first joined the community. For parents, It might have questions like:

  • What is your address?
  • How many children do you have? What is each of their ages?
  • Do they have active educational profiles already submitted to the system?
  • Does your household have personal transportation that would be convenient for transporting your children to the education area? Provide details.
  • Is there convenient public transportation access nearby? Provide details.

This community questionnaire could be constructed piece by piece over time as needed or, done all at once. If the answer to the previous question about do you already have an “active educational profile” of life is yes, many of these answers would already be filled in and presented to the proper coordinators to verify they have not changed.

Where PD really shows its “Personalized” responsiveness, when the process nears completion, it is not just the publication of “bus schedules.” Each student would be provided a suggested “optimized” plan for transportation. Upon review, changes, and finalization, the plan, for each individual student, would be activated.

On any single street in the community, each student might have a different solution, for each day of the week. Why? During some months, for example, when the educational plan includes field trips, a small group of students might be assigned to a local carpool to go directly to the training location – a local hospital, for example. Also, notice that the process is not locked in for an entire year. If a student’s needs change, for any reason, the system would automatically adjust for a new optimum plan. And to make this very clear, no current representative method can come anywhere near doing this. 

6. How to introduce Personalized Democracy into small communities

Starting from scratch

The examples above assume the existence of large, complex, computing structures that accept thousands of inputs, from thousands of citizens, address thousands of options, and produce thousands of individualized outputs. When communities are just forming, and have under 200 members, the processes can be reduced to very simple approaches, most only requiring simple spreadsheets and document storage. What's critical for these communities, is to have access to just basic elements: a public access document storage mechanism like Google Drive for their Foundation documents, members familiar with Personalized Democracy, and a program to train members how PD works for their community. 

The Foundation Documents

It is assumed that the community has a written FOUNDATION. That is, the founders have collected a comprehensive set of documents that describe what defines the community and how it differs from other communities and social structures. Such foundation documents would include things like the following.

Identifying the social goals and common beliefs that have pulled the group together. Some examples would be climate change, social justice, environmental conservation, fresh food, reduction of poverty, or poor living conditions.

Providing an Index of the foundation documents that summarizes and organizes the foundation documents. This should be a "working" document that grows and changes as the community develops. It would include sections like:

        1. The community's goals and beliefs. These might include:
  1. What are the social changes that the community would like to achieve?
  2. What benefits do you believe working together as a group can better achieve than working as individuals?
  3. What defines survival in a collapsing world?
  4. What structure will be set up to prevent the group from falling apart due to arguments or factions?
  5. What tradeoffs do members make going from being "single actors" to part of a group? What "obligations" for "mutual support" would working together imply?

These questions will probably raise quite a bit of discussion. Most people intuitively understand that group membership implies responsibilities. Modern society is so lax at discussing this that we are oblivious to the denials we have. For example, many people believe, since we live in a "free society," we all have complete freedom to do what we want. Explaining why this is not so and what is expected otherwise is critical.

The primary purpose of this effort is to describe how the benefits of joint work require an investment in the care of each other through things like time, effort, and resources.

Familiarization with Personalized Democracy

A key factor for launching a community with Personalized Democracy is finding one or more people who are able to envision and apply a coordinating structure different from what exists. All the basics are contained in the 2 volumes of Collapse 2020.

ClimateSafe Village Education

Personalized Democracy Terminology

Many of the elements that describe Eco-communities, including Personalized Democracy (PD), use terms that already have established meanings in society. The term "Democracy" is an example. The terms "Eco," "Community," and "leadership" are also examples. That means, new members, when they hear or read those terms, will try to understand them from their learned experience. The roles of "leadership" in Eco communities are better understood as mentoring or coordinating. Like all social efforts based on PD, the initiative for all activities is focused on contributions by all the members, not a directive from a "leader" or any government. Over time, it means that all members of the community should expect to be called on to help educate other members.

The effort of education coordinators will be to create educational experience models that members can use to clarify how important terms are used in the new Eco-communities. Since so many community features are approached in a "NEW" way, the opportunities for education will occur continuously. This especially applies to situations where the concepts of education "coordination" and "interaction" themselves apply.

The concept of COMMUNITY and membership

A key element of PD Eco-communities is that they are communities! This implies that such communities are not intended to be places for "hermits" or "isolationists" to come and hide out for protection. When people complain that "they want a voice in their government," when they get that wish fulfilled, it means they need to take an active role in providing that voice. If they expect the community to "provide" considerations for them, they must also accept that the community expects that they return value to the community. This means, for education "coordinators," a major focus will be helping members understand what "committing time, effort, and resources" to the community means.

The modern citizen takes for granted how many community interactions we each already do. To visualize this, look at the following list: food, housing, clothing, transportation, medical, psychology, education, information resources, employment, legal, childcare, meeting space, planning, financing, communicating. All of these will still occur in an Eco-community. An education element is therefore needed to teach the new PD process of coordination expected for each of these.

For example, consider the process of creating education experiences itself. A community, based on PD, will NOT have the "role" that we now associate with a "traditional leader." The traditional "leader" role, adopting a true "democratic" model, would be dispersed to many people in the form of a mentor or coordinator. Each would be identified as a "knowledgeable" spokesperson or coordinator for their specific areas of knowledge. These people would not be chosen for their personality alone using "elections." Each would first be identified and come forward based on demonstrated specialized knowledge and experience.

In modern society, every person in a trade – plumbers, electricians, hair dressers, doctors, lawyers – is required to demonstrate competence through some qualification process. To run for president of the U.S., or a senator or representative, there are zero requirements other than citizenship! It's complete madness!

In an Eco-community, each coordinator would also need to demonstrate some skill in communication of information related to that knowledge and experience. When it comes to explaining the community to external organizations like the news media, no single person would be expected to provide more than a very high-level overview of the community. To present more depth, many different members would have to speak for each of the "elements" listed above. The closest community role that would appear to the outside world as the "community leader" would be a community "speaker." They would essentially be chosen from one of the "philosophical mentors" for the community.

The concept of COORDINATION

For every form of community interaction listed above, and others that will also arise, a methodology for coordination will be needed. These, however, do not have to be designed from scratch. Current society already has "de facto" models in place for all of them. What is needed is to modify the existing models so they include and are based on the benefit of each individual separately, and the welfare of the entire community, not the benefit of any individual business or institution. Understanding this explanation may best be seen using an example.

The entire modern concept of competition developed as a natural progression of life from survival behavior from bacteria to modern humans. The expression of how humans express competition made abrupt changes along the way based almost exclusively on two parameters: human brain changes and the appearance of new technologies.

The key technology changes for the modern age were: the industrial revolution, electricity, medical birth control, and computers. The industrial revolution greatly speeded up the cultural change called the specialization of labor. This brought much of humanity out of a small farmer agrarian lifestyle and into industry, cities, and an explosion of innovation-driven complexity. The last three items, plus electric communication, quickly turned every population center into a Petri dish. How did humanity respond? Did we listen to the warnings? NO. Under the banner of "capitalism" – also known as the bacterial model on petroleum "steroids" - the focus turned intensively to market dominance. Its score sheet is what we call the daily stock market report.

The elements listed, of course, are not compatible with each other. They interact as in a paper-scissors-stone game. For example, innovation flourishes in an environment of freely shared learning. It is stifled, however, by the secrecy of organizations seeking market dominance. Think about how this has destroyed academia! Market dominance flourishes in the environment of aristocratic capitalism: secrecy, ambush, destruction of competition, control of markets, and extreme accumulation of wealth. The last two items, of course, are devastating to "free markets," the environment, and the Quality of Life for those in poverty. 

Resolving these conflicts is where new Eco-communities should make clear changes. Since the growth of "tangible material items" must be greatly reduced to achieve sustainability, modern greed-based capitalism that does not also include the triple bottom line accounting principles and full production cycle sustainability principles should also be completely eliminated. The term "tangible material items" was highlighted because all growth does not "yet" have to stop. The growth of wisdom and knowledge, for example, should still be encouraged. The growth of respect and caring also have a long way to grow. Note the term "yet" highlighted above. The problem of "growth" is tricky. Even for knowledge, unlimited growth eventually fails. Cancer is a good example of the outcome of unlimited growth. At some point, the quantity of knowledge would become so great it would overwhelm any human ability to deal with it, even with computer support.

So, what would be an alternative for Eco-communities? A new society would do as much as possible to limit "society-produced motivations" that drive individuals to "primitive" and simple forms of thinking that, under stress, our brains feel more comfortable with. New models should be depicted that show safe environments with adequate, sustainable resources where cooperation is the appropriate method to solve problems.

To implement models like this, the challenge becomes how to invoke the emotional drivers of competition BUT in an environment of broad cooperation, not mutual destruction! There is a way that we've known about for millennia!

To do this, a specialized form of competition called "cooperative competition" should be applied. The model we have known about from antiquity is the Olympic games.

To understand this example, it is important to first eliminate the use of medals as awards for first, second, and third-place winners. This is a predatory distortion that parallels autocratic thinking. Instead, consider only the events where the criterion for winning is beating an old tangibly measurable record. These are events that measure performance using instruments like clocks and rulers. In such an event, every contestant who beats his or hers old record would get a medal. That medal does not compare any contestant against any other. It records the specific achievement that counts as a new record. For example, in a sprint, it would record the new shortest time for a 100-meter run. There could also be multiple levels of awards for coming close. 

This changes the whole meaning of competition. Every contestant running on the track no longer sees other strong contestants as "threats." Instead, each such challenger actually becomes a "helper"! This occurs because they establish "achievements" of possibility that encourage all the others. The faster each person runs, the harder they push all the others toward winning as well. If the whole field of runners breaks the prior record, it's a win-win-win for all. Every contestant would get an award. If none break the old record, no "new-record" awards are given out. 

The "de facto" models

Above, I provided a list of activities where human interactions occur: food, housing, clothing, transportation, etc. Human interactions for all of these will change under PD. What we shouldn't do is try to envision the new PD model out of thin air. Start with models we already have, and adapt them.

Food as a model

For example, take the first activity on the list: food. How do humans now interact with "food"? The first factor to consider is that there are so many varieties of food experiences in life. These range from getting candy from a vending machine to a feast at a wedding reception. More focus is needed. For each new Eco-community envisioned, try to think of the most basic food issues that will be faced. That is, for a typical day, how would most family groups currently get, transport, store, and process food?

A typical family in a small suburban rural town the U.S. would do the following:

  • Drive to one or more grocery stores and buy needed items for the current week.
  • Bring the items home, and carry them into the house.
  • Divide them up into perishable and non-perishable piles.
  • Put the perishables in a refrigerator or freezer.
  • Put the non-perishables into cabinets.
  • etc., for many more steps.

To use this as a simple process to visualize changes for implementing PD, ask the following two questions for each step:

  1. How have authoritarian structures of the past established rituals for daily life that define how we do them?
  2. If you now have the ability to approach the ritual based on giving each party involved a chance to have their personal approach to it included, what changes could be made that address the basic principles of PD. These were listed above in the section titled Social Contract. For convenience, 4 of the 10 list items are repeated here:

1. Quality of Life

2. All organizations exist to benefit individuals

3. Respect individual thinking, not conclusions

4. Rewards in proportion to social contribution

Right from square one, the whole issue of buying the "needed items" comes up. If the "family" unit is a couple and small children, the parents may decide this on their own. But, if the family unit is an apartment with 6 adults, this task takes on a whole new level of complexity. Sitcoms are written about conflicts that typically arise when multiple adults live together.

This is where implementing PD presents an excellent way to envision how a new community could be different. In current society, finding housing is terribly handled because it is driven to optimize sales business. Individuals typically only see the financial aspects of joining an apartment.

In a PD Eco-community, based on item 2 of the basic principles, the housing process is optimized for the benefit of both buyers and the people already in the apartment. Both the buyers and current occupants would be expected to provide extensive background information about themselves. The elements of the information would be determined by research showing how sharing such elements can improve the "Quality of Life" for all tenants. One of the information items would describe the "food practices" of the tenants already in the apartment and those of prospective tenants. If the apartment is in a city, and the current members are vegetarian and participate in a local "urban garden," this information would be available.

When it finally came time to make up the "weekly" shopping list, this wouldn't simply be checking in cabinets to see what was missing. If food was an important issue to the residents, it would be typical to have longer-term plans to experiment with their diets.

Education as a model

A second example is a brief look at education. In current society, a basic model we have for education is that it is provided to children as they grow to prepare them to enter the workforce and participate as "citizens" in a democracy. To prepare children, we draw on training material from books and videos. The material is gathered into subject groups and presented in gradually increasing complexity. We can start with that. But PD drastically changes the environment in which it is delivered. 

To begin with, the major focus is not convenience for lecture delivery of the standardized curriculum. The major focus is the individual. Every individual, from their earliest entry into learning, would be given the support for a personalized education. The same "learning modules" that are felt appropriate for what we now call k-4 levels, would probably be included. But each child would be evaluated for both special needs, and special skills. A child with musical virtuosity at age 6, for example, would not be expected to slug through the same music learning as the bulk of children with more common skills. PD also envisions a return to a form of apprenticeship in parallel with general learning. Every business and occupation in the community would be expected, as a community contribution, to support this.

Jumping ahead to adults, PD envisions "education" to be a "lifelong" process. The same "apprenticeship" cooperation that is easy to visualize for children to explore new interests, would also be available to adults. The "education coordination" function of the community would coordinate all of this. In a newly forming community, it would require simple collections of personal information records and indexes of community opportunities.  

Employment as a model

A third example is a brief look at employment. In this example, it only applies to roles considered part of community coordination itself.

The first element to understand is item 4 on the principles list: "Rewards in proportion to social contribution." Notice, this does not say "monetary" rewards. How can we put a monetary value on things like kindness, sympathy, or simple companionship in times of need? Some coordination tasks, however, like accounting, may have financial value. The point is, when someone acts as a coordinator, it is expected that they receive some fair exchange community reward for that service.

The second element is how PD handles the concept of "community." Again related to coordinators, every coordinator would be expected to maintain a "universal" member profile record. Think of this as a community "employee file." As circumstances change, new skills are learned, or personal goals change, a person might want to drop one role and take on another. Because of this community profile, the change could occur as simply as employees now change desks. (Ultimately, on a larger scale, PD uses this same model for all employment - a much longer discussion).

7. Conclusion

The initial description for Personalized Democracy at the beginning of this page was related to a fully implemented large-scale model. The last few sections gave examples of how it might apply to small communities in formation, especially those that are embedded within or near existing villages or cities. In those cases, only a few of its key components would be needed an in simpler implementations. In either case, a much more extensive description of Personalized Democracy is available in the book Collapse 2020 v2: Birth of Personalized Democracy, available at no cost to all members of the Eco-communities project.


Other Pages in the ClimateSafe Village Guide

Page 1: Introduction, Overview, and Goals

Page 2: ClimateSafe Village Qualities, Processes, Income Sources, and Safeguards

Page 3: The Four ClimateSafe Village Models and Their Operations

Page 4: Our New Personal Democracy ClimateSafe Village Management Model

Page 5: About ClimateSafe Villages Bellingham, a Unique Rural ClimateSafe Village

Page 6: Our ClimateSafe Villages Bellingham Application Process


Appendix Materials

The ClimateSafe Village Social Contract Page

Online Rules for Our Virtual ClimateSafe Village

Procedures and Policies for Exiting Our ClimateSafe Villages or Applying for Membership 

Personal Democracy White Paper

The ClimateSafe Villages Issues FAQ of frequently asked questions for only issues directly relating to ClimateSafe Villages issues

The ClimateSafe Villages Climate FAQ of frequently asked questions for every question you have about climate change

Click here for our ClimateSafe Village online guide master table of contents



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