The Override Option
I’ve been increasingly wishing we had some method to “override” a law here in the States. An ‘Override Vote’. What a world of difference that would do if we could.
Think of an override as a “recall” but for a specific law.
Imagine if we had the capabilities, by conducting local activism, of overriding legislature/executive laws that we disagree with? How much different of a situation would we be in today?
Hell, it’d be an entirely different world. We can barely even recall politicians, much less hold them accountable for any of their laws.
But it wouldn’t be super challenging to do. Require federal voter IDs. Require a certain number of hardcopy signatures saying yes to the override with voter ID attached. Reach out to all of those voters after the required minimum is met to do a “double opt-in” check with their voter ID. If enough are reached, done. Next election add the law override on the ballot.
Rinse and repeat for each law that we dislike. We could even do annual voting just to lump all of the overrides in one vote, per geographic area. It’s not a tough thing to do. But hell, how much the centralizer class would abhor it. Could you imagine politicians or the isolated class having to deal with their laws getting revoked by the people? It’d be a nightmare for them.
This also gives us two hedges: One, we can make sure the politburo can’t screw us. Two, we can make sure mob-rule or majority rule doesn’t cause problems either, because we’re not giving the direct vote to the people (with the numerous problems attached to a direct democracy).
It’s a great idea, in my opinion. Perhaps the only one that could actually fix a republic going forward.
It goes even further if we limit voting down to only stakeholders/contributors. Meaning only stakeholders (something like a net taxpayer and up in contribution) can directly vote to reject and invalidate the law itself.
Take a state law example. Assume that enough local regions have already satisfactorily shown a policy to be effective enough to pass this policy through the bottom up approach. Assume that the law passes the legislature, is cleared by the judiciary, and is approved by the executive. Yet, assume that the stakeholders overwhelmingly disagree about making this a state-level law. In this scenario, the stakeholders could use their voting unit delegates or petition for signatures to call for an override vote. Once they generate enough enthusiasm for the override vote, it must be placed on the next voting cycle. The stakeholders in the state would then vote to override the law or to allow it to remain in effect. If the majority votes to override, then the law is rejected. Bam, done.
As mentioned, an override vote could be called by either the voting unit delegates or through signature gathering. If the required limits of either are reached, then the next voting session should have an official option listed on it to override the specific law. If the override vote shows a majority of stakeholders disagree with the law change (vote yes on override), then the law is invalid.
We could even give the legislature an out for if a law is an absolute necessity but the people reject it. If a law gets thrown back by a stakeholder vote, then a massive majority (such as 3/4) in the legislature should be required to pass it again (along with the usual steps). This should be kept in as a failsafe, in the event a law is absolutely essential in the eyes of the representatives. It should rarely be used except in cases of extreme crisis. Instead the legislature should do a try over by amending the rejected law with the desires of the stakeholders in mind. Or the legislature should scrap the law entirely, depending on the law itself.
If we added overriding with an easier recall system, then no rep would try to seek that majority anyway, unless it was actually imperative.
Overriding would not be an immediate solution but it does allow a level of oversight that no other framework currently provides. A law could be overridden within a year if the stakeholders are proactive.
It’s also a great sustainability tool for states. “Progress” is the continual enactment of new laws and cultural norms. Tradition is remaining within the realm of heritage. Overriding would be a tool that solely brings us back, never forward, due to the nature of it. It would always regress us back to a point of traditional stability, instead of allowing the never-ending current of more and more laws. It’s a tool to pull back liberal “progress”, before it leads us straight to the grave. The representatives would have a hard time moving forward with centralization when there is such a strong tool to kept them restrained in the back.
Can you imagine how different this covid scenario would have turned out if we had an override option? Would legislature, judges, and executives been able to pull… well, anything? No, we could have overriden all of it.
No lockdowns. No forced vax. No mask mandates on kids. Nothing.
If some people wanted to remain in the lockdowns, with masks on their 5 year olds, then all of the Right-leaners could have just moved to a state where there was enough people willing to override. Or that had already done or threatened to do so. Hell, in this system, the politburo may not have even tried this approach in the first place, knowing it’d get overriden.
Everything would be different. But we don’t have that here. And we never will have that in this system or in this framework. Which is why we need a new framework that is built around sustainment. And that includes a stakeholder override option to “pull back” laws to make sure the nation can always revert back to the founding if the need arises.