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December 2007

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alec_shadowbane in utopia_project

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I'd say that this is probably more of an ideal society than a Utopia, but meh. And yes, I know I'm putting a lot of detail into this.

1. Meritocracy. At the end of their secondary education, people will be taken from their old home, and each will be given a new identity, and put at a standardised level in society. With this as a base-plate, they will be allowed to enter into the bottom rung of whichever occupation they desire, provided there are sufficient spaces. If there are not sufficient spaces, relevant school marks (more on this later) will be looked at to see who should get the job. Those not accepted will be put into their next choice, if the above allows for it. Should they prove incapable of that, they will be assigned to a different job more in keeping with their talents. Those capable of doing the job will be assessed on their performance after 6 months, and any available jobs on the next tier will be filled with the most qualified in the lower group. Qualification will be assessed purley on performance. Should someone wish to change professions, transfer forms must be submitted, and the applicant put through a series of trials to determine their suitability to the new position. Jobs requiring large amounts of training will have a suitable time allotted to training, with bi-monthly assessments on candidate suitability for the final position. Note: there WILL be limits on the number of openings in each career path. NOT EVERYONE can grow up to be an astronaut after all, it's not practical.
2. Standardised Education. All schools will teach the same curriculum, which will hopefully give students a decent idea of what the various career paths have to offer. This will give them a good idea of what they may want to do, as well as giving everyone a fairly level start.
3. Objective Assessment. To avoid potential bias, there will be a specialised branch of public service to do assessments on work performance. These people be put into as little contact with those they are assessing as possible. This will be more difficult for more public roles, naturally, so for the more public role, assessment will be done by committee. All assessments will be looked over by at least two people with access to all the same resources as the assessor, to evaluate it's neutrality and validity.
4. Freedom of religion and sexuality.
5. Contribution Based Pay. The pay for different occupations will be based on their contribution to the society as a whole. This will give the people who actually do the work pay they deserve, while people who sit around looking pretty will have to learn to do so on much less. Also, no welfare. Anyone who doesn't want to work had better finds someone who's prepared to support them.

It took me a while thinking of the last couple, as my main points were covered early on.


With point 5, are you arguing than those who conduct manual labour should be paid more than those of a white-collar occupation, such as a CEO?
I really didn't think that point through anywhere near as much as I should have.
I'm actually having a conflict of ideas here. Those with a larger contibution to society should get more money, but those eho make it to the top of a career path should as well. I'll think about that, and I might have an answer tomorrow.
It's hard to say too, because how do you judge which jobs are most vital? Both the manual laborers and CEOs contribute and depending on your own position you're more likely to say one is more important than the other. It would have to be based on the necessity of different occupations to the survival of the society (so, say, a farmer or a doctor would get paid more than an actor or a sport star) but within each occupation, and speaking more generally, it's difficult.
I think Janitors/Custodians have the most important job in the world, everyone who is one should feel priveleged to be one, and they should each be paid a salary equivalent to that of three corporate CEOs.
You know what, lets just ignore the pay rate part of point 5. I put nowhere near as much thought into it as I should have. The part about welfare stays.
I would say your society is a lot more structured than mine... and a lot more practical and less vague and idealistic.

I have an issue with point 5: does the lack of welfare include people who are genuinely unable to work for whatever reason (eg mentally/physically disabled)?

Mostly I like these ideas however, though I don't know how I feel about the society being so very controlled in terms of occupation etc.
Really, point 5 was just me scrambling for a 5th point, with a little bit of not thinking it all the way through. I'm tempted to just say "loony bin", but I know that's not the way to go. A lot of disabilities still allow people to do some work, but for the others, some kind of carer system would have to be implemented, similar to aged care homes.
Fair enough, you put enough detail into your first points to compensate for an offhand last two anyway (and detail is good :D)

Yeah, I know that a lot of disabilities allow people to work. The others can work as scientific test subjects (only not really, at all). Yeah, I guess a carer system would be the way to go.

And the comparison to the aged care home made me think, at what age would people retire? What age to people go into the workforce? (Or have you not thought about that at all and don't really care to?)
As I said in point 1, once they finish secondary education they enter the workforce. (I couldn't make that sentance sound any less jerkey, sorry about that)
Now, just coming up with an idea for retirement, the best way to do it in my system would probably be this. After someone reaches 55, they may choose to take retirement at any point, and their place will be availiable. After that age, if job performance drops below acceptable levels for that position, they will be offered retirement. They may either take it, or be dropped into a job their current performance makes them capable of performing. This will continue until they either retire, or are no longer able to perform effectivly in their line of work, at which point they will be given retirement.
So that's based on a similar scheme to our own society, really. (Does secondary education end at the same point?) Yeah, that makes sense.