Saturday, July 19, 2014

Fixing the Florida Legislature, pt2

Continued from Part 1.

            The problem with the Florida Legislature is not so much that it exists, ideally you want a representative democratic body when managing people.  State level politics deal with a lot of the nuts and bolts boring as hell politics that is incredibly easy to corrupt and milk for money, and the ability to vote out those politicians that have been shown to let that happen is good.  Having term limits is also good, it keeps people from building up an unstoppable amount of clout to make and direct legislation.  BUT, the system is structured poorly.
            The Florida Government is a mini version of the national government, a bicameral legislature split between a small and powerful senate and a much larger and weaker house.  Strangely the Florida Senate does have one advantage over the Federal Senate, our senators each represent an equal number of people.  There is no situation in which Wyoming (population 600,000) can block legislation from California (population 38,340,000).  But, the Bicameral legislation on the Federal level exists for a specific reason, to keep the interest of states with small populations from being overlooked on a national level by making them disproportionately loud.  That doesn't happen in Florida because a senator doesn't represent an area in the same way, and they are all representing an equal number.  This split isn't meaningful, it along with the house are just two maps aiming to do the same thing, split people up by population using arbitrary criteria.
            Since Florida is much smaller than the United States as a whole, and considering that they do not manage a military or make treaties to other countries, the idea that a less populated region with distinct interests would be overlooked becomes less of an issue.  Wyoming might need to be heard on matters concerning a treaty that disproportionately affects its citizens, but if it did not have that voice in the senate they could be ignored, that cant happen with Orange County and Seminole County.

Florida is quite small in the scheme of things.  The State's internal geographic interests are very small on this scale.
            While people in the Panhandle are not really all that tied into what happens in the Keys, they are more in touch with one another than people in Wyoming and California.  Florida is a tight enough system that not too much subdivision is needed to ensure representation by area is as important as representation by party/ideology.  In other words, Florida state government should be more concerned about what voters think in general, more so than where they are in particular.

            To that end, we should get rid of the current Florida system (and its mini-federal identity) and instead create something more unique in the United States: a parliament.  What is a parliament and why is it better?  I will tell you in part 3.

If you would like a quick source on Parliaments and Representative Democracy in general I recommend CGP Grey on Youtube.

             (If you have a criticism of what I have written, please comment.  If you like what I wrote, please share this on your various social networks and +1 it on Google+.  I would like more people to be aware of the failings of not only Florida, but State Governments all over the US, and this is as best attempt I can muster to illustrate the problems while still having enough humor that people can stomach reading the whole thing.  Thank you.)

No comments:

Post a Comment