Many thanks to ubiquitous columnist and emerging uber-blogger Rondi Adamson for plugging my book!
I had my body fat tested a couple of days ago with an electrical impedance device. Four years ago, I was at a trim 11%. Now…. 16.6%. Sigh. And my BMI of 26.5 makes me officially overweight, which is of course utter nonsense, given my so-called “athletic” build. Just goes to show that BMI is a very poor measure of obesity, so do take those national estimates of obesity prevalence with a huge grain of salt. (Not too huge, since too much salt can cause hypertension and water retension!)
I just had a chat with Nasty Nicky B. over at logbase2 on the topic of appopriate governmental models. While NNB is a self-described anarchist, it may surprise you to learn that I subscribe somewhat to the Platonic view of good government, specifically that we should seek rule by an enlightened elite who don’t really want to rule. An exact description of this model will have to wait for a future blog post, since I really have no idea what I’m talking about.
However, I do want to bounce one idea off of you. One manifestation of the “enlightened elite” is to allow voting only by those who can prove that they are qualified to vote. At present, the only qualification for voting in most Western democracies is citizenship. But only naturalized citizens have ever had to prove some knowledge of the country (which is a strong argument that naturalized immigrants are better qualified to be citizens than are citizens by birth!) I suggest that voters should be compelled to prove their qualification to elect a new government by answering a set of basic questions, such as:
“Who is the incumbent?”
“What is the difference between debt and defecit?”
“Which countries are this nations three biggest trading partners?”
“What is this country’s biggest export?”
These questions are similar to those asked of every immigrant before receiving citizenship. See where I’m going with this? I guess in some ways I ad suggesting that for everyone, not just immigrants, citizenship should be earned through demonstrated knowledge. By instituting such a filter, we:
- guarantee a somewhat more informed voting population
- demonstrate the importance of education in the functional world
- make voting valuable again by associating with it a price (disincentive)