Meritocracy

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Types of government

A meritocracy is a system of government based on rule by merit. In this context, "merit" means intelligence, effort, and ability. Micronationally, the word "meritocracy" is most often used to describe a society where social status is assigned through competition, on the assumption that the winners deserve their resulting advantage, usually a position of power within the government. Just as often, this merit can be determined by general consensus, as is done in tribal societies, such as the Inuit or the Sioux.

Meritocratic governments and organizations stress talent, education, and competence, rather than existing differences such as social class, ethnicity, or sex. The Imperial Republic of Shireroth and New Guinea have many aspects of a meritocratic process involved, where a vacant government position (all the way up to the Kaisership or First Citizen themselves) are filled by the individual deemed "most worthy"--sometimes by general consensus, sometimes by Imperial appointment.

The New Feudalism within Shireroth also contains a meritocratic process, where effective leaders are installed by feudal contract by the people they are going to be ruling.


Meritocracy: Theory

A micronational theory of Meritocracy written by Aryeztur Mejorkhor is as follows:

The function of a government is to serve its people to the best of its ability and govern them to the best of its ability. No government should be above the people it governs or unaccountable to them. Therefore, the only true autocrat and monarch in a political system should be the law, which everyone must answer to and nobody should escape from. However, while people have the authority to demand justice from their government, they should not have the authority to control the government based on their whims, mob mentality, or mass decisions. The best government is a government that wisely governs, prudently, and for the benefit of all the people in the society, keeping to traditions when and where necessary, and changing traditions when and where necessary. It is for this reason that government should not classify itself as either capitalist or communist, because these are two extreme etched in stone. Rather, while a government should provide for and support the basic needs of its people, thus being somewhat socialist, it should be prepared to swing in either direction as the times would allow. Likewise, a government should reject aristocracy and monarchy because these privilege the wealthy or those born lucky, dictatorship, because those are not accountable to the people and often lust for personal power, theocracy, because it is too rigid and cannot expect all the people to conform to one set of ideals, and democracy, because it is a popular contest of the best and most cunning speakers, and often liars who would lie in order to obtain votes. Nor should one segment of society, such as the military, businessmen, or peasants rule over the whole of society because they cannot adequately serve any interests but their own. A truly good government would compose of the most able leaders from all segments of society, leaders who would rule over a constantly changing government to meet the constantly changing needs of society, utilizing the best aspects of all other forms of government. These rulers, regardless of birth, status, class, rank, or occupation, would, through their abilities, and hard work rise though up into positions of governance. However, I realize that it would be almost naïve and idealistic to expect a series of able rulers to rule without becoming an elite, abusing their power, or essentially becoming a dictatorship of those favored by the initial rulers. Therefore, it is important to create a system of government which will ensure continued rule by people of ability, to which I will dedicate the rest of this document to. Therefore, we shall call this system, Meritocracy, a system based on ability: a social system that gives opportunities and advantages to people on the basis of their ability rather than, for example, wealth or seniority.

Plato's ideas as presented in The Republic are considered the roots of Meritocratic theory.

Meritocracy: Macronational Examples

A true Meritocracy has never existed in human history. In order to gain an understanding of how such a system might work however, we can look to the small scale example of pre-historic societies, bands of hunter-gathers, in which the wisest and strongest member would become leader of the band. He would assume this position after the approval of the members of his band because of his ability to lead the band best in time of trouble and his ability to ensure his band had sufficient food and shelter. If he failed to do so, he would be removed and replaced by a new leader. Granted that this is a simple allegory, but it conveys the idea of what a Meritocracy is, how one would function, and shows that such an idea is not new. While such a form of government worked on small scales, in small groups with few needs, it quickly gave way to other types of governments with the rise of civilization. The truth is, such a simple meritocracy is not possible in advanced civilizations. There are simply too many people and too many responsibilities for the leader for the pre-historic direct meritocratic system to work. The pre-historic system becomes worthless in any society that has more than a hundred people and practices agriculture. In history, of all political systems, the one that has most resembled a meritocracy, is the early government of the United States (from around 1790 to 1820). It can be argued that America did not become a democracy until after this period. During this period, a group of disinterested, committed men ran America, strictly following principles, and arguing not for personal gain or power, but over policies for the greater good of the entire nation.

Meritocracy in Practice

One way to set this up in Micronations is this: a committee of wise, dedicated, veteran leaders would be set up. The members of the committee would never hold any positions of power themselves. They should be barred from holding any positions of power other than selecting those with the most dedication and talent to run for these positions of power. As they cannot select themselves, they must select others, bringing in new blood to the political system. AND, if no one person can hold the same position two times in a row, this opens up the way for a very egalitarian society. There are many ways to select this committee: democratic elections, popular agreement, dictatorial intervention are just some.

Meritocracy As A Movement

The Progressive Party of Antica is a political party that advocates establishing Meritocracy as an eventual goal.


Arguments Against Democracy

As proposed by Aryeztur,

Democracy is not natural for the human race. Only for about 5% of recorded history has most of the world been democratic. In addition, during the other 95% of history, only 5% of the world was democratic. Democracy is therefore not a traditional and natural way of government . In addition, democracy, since it represents the people, interferes in their lives more (although many dictatorships have also done this). The people want a strong stable government that they don't have to worry about, so that they can focus more on their lives and customs rather than politics. Legislatures sometimes feel like they need to make new laws all the time to show that they're actually doing something. However, it is better to just make new laws when needed and enforce them at once, unlike in democracies. Justice is also done better in non-democracies, where there is no debate and doubt. In addition, democracy destroys individuality and traditional culture by fostering mob mentality and mass movement.

Notable meritocracies