Daniel Parker? weren´t you dead?
no, I turned 2 clicker, but that is also not really my style.
Yeey you are active again! I thought you would come back, since you ´died´ before.
Well, I´m not taking up any jobs in government or even my party anymore, I think I´ve proven that I earned my spores there allready.
So, I´m not diving back into the messy hallways (achterkamertjes) of the power-structures of our country anymore, but try to become an Independent thinker for the Independent Party.
I´m taking up Konrad´s advise, and make IP more outspoken.
Every party needs some prominent advisors, and this might be the ideal role for me, not a daily task but I´ll pop up every now and then and voice my opinion, even if you don´t like it.
So I decided to become the philosopher in the cave at the Vaalserberg, where I will guide everyone towards the light, but I´ll make you stumble along the way, because I love slapstick, and I know laughter it´s good for me, and maybe you too.
Since I already got a Media Moghul medal I don´t have the need to make my articles lulzy anymore.
So be aware of text-bombs.
I&W is a communist party
First let´s get two things straight:
1. Erep is not Real life.
Rules and experiences in real life most probably don´t correspond with rules and experiences in eRepublik.
2. I´m not a communist in RL (or in erep)
Communism in any non-democratic form in RL sucks ass, I would never endorse it.
I would even go so far to say I despise it. I consider myself a social-liberal (yes, I know they are sparse nowadays). Also I´m not just making this article because of some coalition-forming, as I said, I´m not involved anymore with the political gutter.
Okay, that proves my neutrality and a framework for thinking about these subjects in eRepublik. Now let´s look at what we are dealing with.
3. current political power division in UNL
Currently our country seems to be run by two power-houses in our country, which you can roughly describe as left and right wing.
The Right wing consists of the oldest and biggest party of our country Iron Wine (authoritarian right winged) which get´s frequent support from slightly less right-ish parties like GLD (green liberal party), LP (Libertarian Party) which became more neutral in the new form of IP (Independent Pary). GLD historically was more a centrist party, but recently they seem leaning more to the right and even show some sympathy towards authoritarianism. Some might even go as far and claim that GLD is I&W´s sister-party and it´s main reason they don´t mere is that GLD plays it´s part as guard-dog very well.
I wouldn´t go that far, but it´s clear that the parties at this moment are quite close.
I&W sometimes is forced to work together with more left parties (when we form party-coalition based governments), and in those cases they prefer smaller parties as liaison, but only if that seems impossible the priority changes to experience.
The right wing consist of 2.3* top5 parties which accounts for approximately 199 people active in these parties. Which is 52% of the all party members of the top5 parties.
The left wing is lead by LSD which is slightly smaller then I&W, and therefore also tends to foster fewer pro-active players as I&W does. GLD might harbor some socialist to, but we know for certain IP does. The communist party is new on the scene, and although many of there members are definitely more then 2-clickers, they only recently really joined in on national debates, but if they keep this up they might become a can of worms that the right wing cannot ignore.
The left wing also consists of about 2.3* top 5 parties, but their total only adds up to about 159 members, which is roughly 44% of the all party members of the top5 parties.
Even including the effects of tactical voting the congress elections results in my opinion seem like a quite good representation of the parties number of memberships.
It´s clear that the right wing in the strongest in numbers and in all power structures (party, congress, president), presidential election results confirm this. Competitors against the ruling right-winged supported CP-candidate are seldom elected as Country President.
In some cases I&W worked together with their biggest competitor LSD. Experiences seem to differ that they are either very successful, or very bad, and complaining about each-other often precedes or follows these governments (sometimes even makes them fall), but during these governments it all looks like peace and bliss, and these parties try to endure as much hardship as possible.
* I divided IP in 3 parts, 1 part is more right-ish, 1 part is more left-ish, and 1 is generally speaking super-neutral. All numbers mentioned are estimates, and could do with some extra confirmation.
4. current status of economic power of UNL
This is a bit more speculative then the political power part, but seeing that I&W is the oldest (and some might argue the most experienced) party, and quite some of there prominent member run many companies (the name Mitch Rapp pops up in my mind), I&W (and in lesser extent GLD) can been seen as an economic powerhouse. Some even consider I&W to be the ´business-party´ of the country, maybe even similar to the RL counterparts VVD or Republican party. If you attach their political power (and it´s adjacent influence in the state-companies) with their inherit economical power, some might suspect that I&W almost has a monopoly on most parts of the economy, or at least is in the position to dictate it´s will onto vast parts of the economical policies of government or the general ´open market´.
As former LP party president I was always surprised that I&W was such a great defender of state-companies, something I didn´t see very fitting in their profile. Maybe it´s because they cannot provide enough jobs (especially) during recession (or don´t want to put their own money into that) .
5. information is power
Although a lot of things have been said about transparency, I do would like to raise this point once again. On this matter GLD definitely changed from neutral to right.
Konrad made claims that full transparency was either not possible and/or not wanted.
However I value transparency to quite some extent, I do agree with him that transparency isn´t a goal, but a means to an end.
Transparency as I see it, is the extent that people will share information and therefore in essence the extent to they allow others make use of that information to become more successful and powerful.
In my opinion most I&W never showed great enthusiasm in sharing their expertise with the rest of the country. The best ministers of Information or Recruitment & Coaching are seldom from I&W. Counterargument could be that Konrad from I&W´s guard-dog GLD was an extremely informative Minister of Information & interior.
However he stated never to be a fan of transparency, and I personally have always had doubts about the informative quality of many of those articles.
5. authoritarianism & communism
Some contextual info and how it applies in eRepublik
The main characteristics of communism is defined in textbooks as:
5.1.1. A one party rule
well, our country has 1 party that does dominate politics, maybe not all the time, and not fully, but it can´t be ignored or pushed aside.
5.1.2. Control over agriculture and industry
Here also one could say the same thing as the previous comment
5.1.3. No private property
Well, this strictly isn´t true offcourse, but I&W is the main shareholder of the country it seems.
The main characteristics of Authoritarianism is defined in textbooks as:
5.2.1. rule of men, not rule of law
This could be attributed to I&W, but that wouldn´t be fair, since any party does this, sometimes people from less experienced parties are criticized for not having enough experience, All parties have no problem to put forward people that are quite fresh (either being inactive for a while or are generally new). UNL desperately needs new and more people to bring down friend-politics.
5.2.2. rigged elections
I wouldn´t go as far to say I&W rigs elections, although they might benefit most of their experience when with tactical voting, these effects aren´t that great. I think the volume of party members is quite well related to the number the parties fetch in congress elections. Cp elections is another matter, I&W always delivers a CP-candidate, and 9 of of 10 that one is elected as country president.
5.2.3. all important political decisions made by unelected officials behind closed doors
I&W in government mainly tries to dominate the most important ministries: Finance,economy,state-companies and especially defense. Other parties are generally given less important
5.2.4. a bureaucracy operated quite independently of rules, the supervision of elected officials, or concerns of the constituencies they purportedly serve
same could be said as 5.3
5.2.5. the informal and unregulated exercise of political power
The funny thing is that the right wing always fixates on rules, but when they break them themselves they relativate them. The Declaration of war of Garmr recently on Belgium was a nice example of this.
6. recap & conclusion
a. The right wing lead by I&W is the most powerful political entity in this country
b. The right wing lead by I&W isn´t very enthusiastic about sharing information
c. The right wing lead by I&W dominates politics in this country
d. The right wing lead by I&W is the most powerful economic entity in this country
e. The right wing lead by I&W is supportive of state companies
f. The right wing lead by I&W dominates the economy in this country
g. The right wing lead by I&W doesn´t like to share it´s power with others
h. The right wing lead by I&W is authoritarian, but almost looks totalitarian
i. The left wing cannot compete with the right wing on all fronts at the same time (economical or political)
j. I&W is a authoritarian (maybe with totalitarian wishes) non-communicative party that supports state companies and is not very willing to share power
k. I&W is a communistic(-ish) party ?!!
l. The need for politics in the center of the political spectrum is greater then ever.
m. i&w´s biggest crime is still they always had the worst logo in the country (no that´s not really a fact, but my belief).
Richard Rorty: Trotsky and the wild orchids
Although I guess this article will be seen as merely I&W bashing by some people who don´t bother to read the whole text, that wasn´t my intention. I merely wanted to put out some speculative ideas forward no one seems to talk about. I hope you had fun reading it, as I had writing it.
for all those who bothered to read all this, if you didn´t close your eyes please: