Should countries be run like business corporations?

GogLais

Ad Honorem
Sep 2013
4,873
Wirral
#41
Yes, but I was following on bboomer's comments about Australia. Macron's approval in France is in the 20s% and the UK can't get its act together about Brexit.

Time to hire a Chairman of the Board (who could be a woman) to run things, subject to voter approval of course.
Well as regards Brexit, no course of action whether it’s remain, leave with a deal or leave without a deal currently has the approval of a majority of the voters.
 
Apr 2012
982
The Netherlands
#42
Absolutely not. A corporation only cares about money and has no incentive to care for anything else, let alone for the common good. Running a country like a business would just mean a government that does not spend any money on the people. No healthcare, no social security, probably no infrastructure that doesn't benifit the board personally and workers right would probably go down the drain very quickly.
 

stevev

Ad Honorem
Apr 2017
2,774
Las Vegas, NV USA
#44
Absolutely not. A corporation only cares about money and has no incentive to care for anything else, let alone for the common good. Running a country like a business would just mean a government that does not spend any money on the people. No healthcare, no social security, probably no infrastructure that doesn't benifit the board personally and workers right would probably go down the drain very quickly.
You apparently haven't followed the conversation. There are a number of kinds of corporations including non profit corporations and municipalities. Although I want at least some of the efficiency of business corporations, the goal of a sovereign corporation is to maximized the quality of life for all citizens. There are now fairly good models for rating QOL which include things you mention.

One criticism that I got was that I made too easy to fire the Chairman
 
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stevev

Ad Honorem
Apr 2017
2,774
Las Vegas, NV USA
#45
Actually we do have to live with the results. If America sneezes then the rest of the world catches a cold.
The current situation in the US is bizarre. Unemployment of those actively seeking a job is around 3%; probably close to an irreducible minimum. Worker participation is increasing. That takes in all but minors, the disabled, the incarcerated , retired and several other categories. Without getting into politics, there are good reasons to nevertheless feel the nation is in trouble. I personally think the system of checks and balances will work. But I understand why people in other countries (along with 55-60% of US citizens ) are shacking their heads. That figure for citizens will rise if economic conditions change for the worse. I think we have too many elected officials who can't get together to confront one certain individual.
 
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Oct 2015
889
India
#46
There's seems to be greater than usual discontent with government in Europe and the US among other places. Could the corporate model work better and preserve accountability? In this model the CEO is chosen by the Board of Directors who in turn are responsible to the shareholders. For a sovereign state the "shareholders" are the citizens. Rather than getting involved in ideology, the goal is to maximize the quality of life of the citizens. The CEO has broad power within certain reasonable constitutional restrictions to run the government. There is no legislature. Courts work on the basis of the constitution. Local governments can pass ordinances suitable to local needs.
I am trying to understand what exactly you are proposing as an alternative.

USA:

CEO (President) is elected directly by people (Shareholders). The Board of Directors (Congress & Senate) is also directly elected by the people (Shareholders).

So the problem arises that CEO is independent of the Board and there can be conflict - as there was recently and Executive branch comes to a standstill.

UK:

The corporate model suggested by you seems close to the British system. CEO (Prime Minister) is appointed by the Board (Parliament, effective the majority party). So there is no conflict.

First problem is that people (shareholders) don't know who will be the PM (CEO). Second problems arise when none of the parties has a majority, there is a coalition, which leads to compromises and horse-trading. In either of the events power-mongers and wheeler-dealers can carry the day.

Third problem is that there is a minority party which does not share power. It is always trying to catch the neck of the ruling party and/or the CEO appointed.

Your suggestion:

Perhaps is let us not have multi-party system so that parliament (Board of Directors) is not divided. This is exactly the system prevailing in Russia and China. If you want to completely eliminate the "legislature" then how will the Board of Directors get elected / selected? And who will make the laws? In short-run it may appear that Constitution will never need amendment, but in long run everything becomes outdated & needs changes.

The modern democracy is based on the idea of separation of legislature, executive, and judiciary. Things are so volatile that a fourth pillar has become a part - the media, mass-media, and increasingly social-media. None can be dispensed with in my view.
 
Oct 2018
1,209
Adelaide south Australia
#47
Actually we do have to live with the results. If America sneezes then the rest of the world catches a cold.

True to a point. I suspect the effects may not be quite as extreme as they once were. I'm thinking of the sub prime mortgage disaster and following recession. The impression I had at the time was that disaster was caused by a combination of naked greed and relatively poor US banking regulations. Australian banking regulations are fairly strict. Even so, our major banks till get pinged from time-to-time for being naughty. Our bankers are easily as greedy as any in the US from where I sit..

There was certainly a flow on effect in Australia, but far less severe. Not to worry; the US is the world's largest debtor. Eventually, but hopefully not in my life time, it will go arse over tit and take the rest of the world with it.. I think that's probably true of any major country. In the shorter term, my concern is China. My perception is that China's current rate of economic growth is unsustainable. I half expect it to come to a sudden halt in the near future. That will have a dire effect on many countries. .
 

stevev

Ad Honorem
Apr 2017
2,774
Las Vegas, NV USA
#48
I am trying to understand what exactly you are proposing as an alternative.
The corporate model is generally good at getting things done. This includes non profit corporations. However they often don't have secure funding. Municipalities can tax but compete with higher levels of government. They also are not structured like business corporations and therefore less efficient.

I'm proposing a corporate model that puts responsibility on one person subject to a standing vote of confidence of the citizens. A standing vote is set electronically by the voter in a secure system. The citizen can set the switch on 'approve' or 'disapprove'. It's not a poll or an election. At any time the citizen can change their standing vote. If the overall rating falls below 50% the government is on probation. Time is allowed for the government to regain a majority so that needed but unpopular decisions can be defended. The Chair (the only elected official) can also make changes in the government . If these fail, the Chair must resign and a new chair is elected.

The key is that the sovereign corporation has a constitutional mandate to maximize the quality of life of its citizens (QOL) which is politically and functionally well defined.



USA:

CEO (President) is elected directly by people (Shareholders). The Board of Directors (
So the problem arises that CEO is independent of the Board and there can be conflict - as there was recently and Executive branch comes to a standstill.
No. As with typical corporate entities, the CEO is chosen by the Board and is subordinate to the Board. Members of the Board are chosen by the elected Chair who is also a member of the Board. All officers appointed by the Chair can be dismissed by the Chair.


First problem is that people (shareholders) don't know who will be the PM (CEO)
.

Maybe, maybe not. In an election the candidate can disclose this if the candidate thinks it's advantageous.

Second problems arise when none of the parties has a majority, there is a coalition, which leads to compromises and horse-trading. In either of the events power-mongers and wheeler-dealers can carry the day.
What's the role of a political party? Basically it's to support candidates that agree with a sub population of voters. If the constitution sets QOL as the goal of any government, who will openly disagree with that? Elections should be about who is most qualified. I see this in a market economy where private enterprise is the engine. Some in the private sector may not the like the goal of maximizing QOL or how it's carried out but I doubt it will lead to a political movement. If it does and they can justify how more pollution increases QOL or that their product is worth a little more pollution, let the people decide.


Third problem is that there is a minority party which does not share power. It is always trying to catch the neck of the ruling party and/or the CEO appointed
.

See second problem.
 
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Chlodio

Ad Honorem
Aug 2016
3,467
Dispargum
#49
There will always be party differences in the definition of Quality of Life. Some people will believe a higher quality of life comes from a libertarian, hands-off, deregulated economy. Other people will want a more activist government. Or on social issues: How does QoL relate to the abortion issue? Some people will say that QoL comes from a woman's right to choose. Other people will say that QoL must first begin with life and be anti-arbortion. Every other issue that affects QoL can be politicized the same way.
 

stevev

Ad Honorem
Apr 2017
2,774
Las Vegas, NV USA
#50
There will always be party differences in the definition of Quality of Life. Some people will believe a higher quality of life comes from a libertarian, hands-off, deregulated economy. Other people will want a more activist government. Or on social issues: How does QoL relate to the abortion issue? Some people will say that QoL comes from a woman's right to choose. Other people will say that QoL must first begin with life and be anti-arbortion. Every other issue that affects QoL can be politicized the same way.
QOL is active area of interest. One can evaluate mathematically the parameters of QOL. This article is not the end all, be all on the matter, but it's the present UN guideline. Two parties are not to going satisfy everyone (and maybe no one) and single issue parties are not likely to govern. In any case it's all people know.

New U.N. Index Measures Nations' Quality of Life

The "Where-to-be-Born" Index: The Highest And Lowest Scoring Countries
 
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