Selection & Removal

It is not the job of the candidate to win. His job is to BE the best candidate. Electing the best candidate is the job of the people. We have to let the people do their job, and if they fail to do it well, we will all pay the price together.
Jon Roland, to a discouraged campaign worker, after losing his campaign for Congress, 1974
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The main methods for selecting officials are:

  1. Election By vote, either by the people or some subset of them.
  2. Sortition By lot, the way juries are selected.
    1. Fetura Alternating random selection and fitness screening, the same method used in genetic or evolutionary algorithms.
  3. Appointment Selection by other officials, also called cooptation, especially when a body appoints its own members.
  4. Examination Use of a procedure to rank or reject contenders, often in conjunction with other methods.
  5. Rotation Each of several persons takes turn filling an office. Usually done under one of the first three.
  6. Seniority Usually a method of promotion within a department or branch.
  7. Conquest Surrender to a powerful individual or group, usually but not necessarily through violence.
  8. Inheritance Method characteristic of monarchical or aristocratic systems.
  9. Purchase Usually a corrupt mode of appointment, it could be made legal.
  10. Infiltration Placement by subversive means, or by influence of a special interest group.

The main methods of removing officials are:

  1. Expiration of term
  2. Non-retention
  3. Termination by superior
  4. Impeachment and removal
  5. Resignation
  6. Death
  7. Disability
During the late 20th century the word "liberal" came to mean someone whose copy of the Bill of Rights was missing the Second and Tenth Amendments, and the word "conservative" someone whose copy was missing the First and the Ninth.
Jon Roland, May, 1994

Selection Alternatives and Reform

Vote rigging

Those who cast the votes decide nothing. Those who count the votes decide everything.
Attributed to Josef Stalin

Campaign financing and disclosure

Always vote for principle, though you may vote alone, and you may cherish the sweetest reflection that your vote is never lost.
John Quincy Adams




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Maintained: Constitution Society
Original date: 1995/9/25