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Frisco Utopia

[whitespace] Daring Democracy

By Hank Hyena

City hall is controlled by "machine politics." Sure, it's "progressive"--whatever that means--but so what? The intellectual dearth of discord between opposing Frisco factions has created a flaccid, totalitarian, unimaginative wormpit--the only government game now is back-scratching, Willie Brown-nosing, and namby-pamby toeing the local line. Ambitious Democrats kowtow to the windbag wheeler-dealers above them, so they can slither up greasy legislative poles to cushier seats in state and federal assemblies. Meanwhile, big bucko deals take place behind closed doors with criminals like de Bartolo and other corporate kingpins.

We Friscoites regard ourselves as politically astute, but the percentage of people participating in elections here is pitifully small. Noam Chomsky's notion that democratic procedures are only charades invented to "manufacture consent" is at least as accurately applied here as it is anywhere else in America. This thesis thrives when you peer at present polls--only 29 percent of the populace appreciates Da Incumbent, but he'll probably get re-elected anyway, due to his great gobs of power, with no paper trail. Few foes can afford to fight him, other than a multimillionaire ...

Frisco Utopia deserves a daring democracy, where all tiny voices are urged to speak up. Out with bullies, bribes and bilious propaganda! In with altruism and other ideals! Improving the present contaminated political structure is as sticky as draining a tarpit--superior are all plans that utilize an entirely untested approach. Please ponder below two enticing reforms that might grant us a government we can digest without gagging:

Cyber-Town Forum: Imagine the obliteration of all civic managerial posts--visualize the vaporizing of "judges," "supervisors," "department chiefs," "chairpeople," "directors," "principals" and "executive assistants." Imagine workers only, performing tasks agreed upon by all citizens who wish to participate in any strategic discussions occurring in--the Department Chatroom! This open-inclusion sounds futuristically fabulous, but it's as old as the Roman Forum and the Athenian Assembly.

Robot Rulers: Let's program the electronic wisdom of the world's greatest prophets, leaders and social utopians--into a computer that'll guide us in all future projects. Emma Goldman, Tristan Tzara, Marcus Aurelius and Joan of Arc should be starters, with Mohammed, Starhawk, Lao Tzu and Queen Semiramis of Nabatea as second-stringers. We can vote on who they should be, and that'll be it--the last election that we'll ever have to endure! When our celestial committee is selected, we'll just burden them eternally with all our civic problems--the dead souls can fight it out, and email us with the answers ... .

Hate my ideas? Send your own to [email protected]

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From the August 16, 1999 issue of the Metropolitan.

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