Saturday, October 11, 2014

Politics on mars

Here we have a one square kilometer claim divided into 27 sections. Each section is 32,000 square meters which could be further divided into 16 plots of 2,000 m2 (40m x 50m, nearly half an acre) each plot having a 40 m. frontage on a 10 m. wide public road.

The perimeter road is interior to the claim and would be 20 m. wide where claims join.

The supreme law of the land would be absolute property rights. This does not exist on earth. On mars this would mean...

Nobody could take your land for the fictional 'public good' (eminent domain.) Nobody could tax it because that is a form of taking. Regulation is a form of taking as well, but unavoidable so how do we limit its impact? By making all politics local. Not as a quip but in reality.

Making property rights absolute brings consent of the governed closer to reality than by any other means. Consent of the governed is a fiction in a democracy leading to many appalling results you could read about daily if you chose to, or ignore if you're disposed to. Those affected by it can not so easily ignore it.

First a bit more physical reality. Because of the curvature of a planets surface you soon run into problems trying to map squares onto it, so I have a suggestion. Map those squares onto a ten kilometer wide ribbon that starts at the equator and spirals to each pole. Let every 100 sq. km. (10 km. x 10 km.) be a township. This doesn't work in every land area, but will in most cases. The 10 m. wide interior roads are the responsibility of those owning any of a given claim. The 20 m. wide perimeter roads are those of the township. The town council has one member from each occupied claim, chosen by any means those of a claim come up with (there's a reality show in that some where.) Claims with no local residents will not be represented but their rights are still protected by the supreme law of the land. No political entity (world, township, claim, or other world) can take away the property of any property holder unless it is freely traded by the owner.

Up to 100 towns choose membership in a county (10,000 sq. km.) Up to 100 counties join a state (1,000,000 sq. km.) 144 (or so) states form the world council. None can take away, tax (by any name) or use anyone's property without actual consent (not by legal fiction or otherwise.)

While a criminal may be deprived of his/her life, he or she can not be deprived of their property, which goes to any heirs. He or she can not be forced to sell it to pay for his/her incarceration. They may choose to sell some or all for damages or restitution but can not be forced to. Strong property rights are like those in our first amendment, inalienable.

We've never tried this on earth. I wonder how it would turn out hundreds of years later on mars?

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