The Confederation of Democratic Simulators is a brilliant idea. The CDS is essentially, democracy with a big capital C in Second Life.
The CDS has a Representative Assembly who conveys problems to the Chancellor, vote on issues and bring up points from the Land Use Commission and the Scientific Council, and every 6 months, a new RA and chancellor are voted in by the renters of land in the CDS. In effect, it really is democracy in action. The problem is, its ultimately failed. Like any democracy with voting and assembly, to get in, you need to “get in”. The CDS prize themselves in saying that “any citizen can stand” but the reality is, they cant. Unless you start showing up to every single meeting, unless you start spending all your time on the event, unless you start to “schmooze” the powers that be, you have as much chance of getting voted into the chancellorship as Boris Johnson has of becoming the President of the United States.
The failure of the system was seen by myself very clearly with the inauguration of the new assembly, as they voted in the citizen representatives of the Land Use Commission, and it angered me that much, the following picture happened…
The LUC is a group within CDS assigned with land issues, whether it is actual direct land issues or upgrades and overhauls to do with bringing more people into the lands of CDS, therefore, bringing more cash into the “town” and bringing fresh blood into an ageing and inward-looking community. The RA vote people in on merit, what they can give and offer to the LUC, their experience, their knowledge, their insight. Vic Mornington submitted his name in for the LUC. They turned him down, in favour of personal friends of the newly voted in Representative Assembly.
“Jobs for the boys” (or girls). The single biggest form of corruption in any major world democracy is alive and well within the stale, inward-looking Confederation of Democratic Simulators, and to be honest, its been happening for a long, long time now. The corruption of the system can be seen just by looking at the map of the CDS. There are vast swathes of yellow for sale land making the place look like its a chunk of mainland world map. Wandering around the CDS, the place looks good enough, with public amenities, public footpaths and public buildings. However dig deeper and get into the whole political landscape of the CDS, you find the SL democratic equivalent of nepotism. Friends voted in by the RA into places of power within the two commissions. Friends voted into places of power, even though those friends have no clue whatsoever about what that position entails.
That empty plot of land above? That used to be The Tuscan Order. The restaurant I ran. A Mornington built cafe, tied to Brunel Hall and part of the Destination Guide, indeed, it was the only major source of new footfall for the CDS when the Tuscan Order reopened…and I returned the lot after hearing from Vic that he was passed over for a position in the CDS. That’s when I figured it was time to go. After reading the RA’s comments on the CDS forum about their reasoning, that’s when I really decided it was time to go. Vic knows more about land use, land adminning, estate adminning, building (and gentryfiying the build), destination guide rules and event planning that practically the entire RA and the LUC combined, that’s why everything (literally…everything) he builds ends up on that Destination Guide, and we don’t even submit it. The travesty of the new RA’s voting in of new LUC members is not the fact that they passed over one of the biggest assets the place has, its the travesty of the current RA putting their friends first…before the well being and future-proofing of the lands (and citizens) they laughably are supposed to represent, which is probably why the CDS is an ageing idea which hasn’t managed to reach its full potential. If it did manage to reach it, there wouldn’t be so much yellow land for sale. The one person who could have turned it all around? Well, he got the message along with me. Vic has told me as I’m writing this that he has cleared out his land too and is moving on to someplace, anyplace which is more welcoming.
This was the CDS second chance with regards to myself and Vic, but even after the Cleo debacle, deep down, nothing with the CDS has changed, and there’s a little bit of Cleopatra Xigalia in all of the power shuffling musical chair people who have been slowly running CDS into the ground for the past half-decade, the sad part is? They don’t even realise they are doing it, and they don’t realise that the actions they are taking had made the CDS damaged goods, which tracks back to the main reason why CDS has so much land for sale.
The Confederation of Democratic Simulators…a place where democracy is slowly dying.