Complexity Society

The Concept of Asymmetric Democracy

Individuals are the atoms of a society, while families constitute its fundamental building blocks, its DNA. The amount of entropy or disorder that each individual ‘dumps’ into society depends on the amount of freedom, or impunity, society offers – or is willing to tolerate – as well as one’s moral compass, responsibility and, of course, lifestyle. Education in other words. Education is a very lengthy and costly process. Given the emergency at hand there is no time to rethink educational programs, or to re-educate the current population. Remember, we’re speaking of a catastrophe around 2055-2060 (analysis based on complexity and entropy of the system of 260 000 parameters published annually by the World Bank). It is imperative to put in place measures that can produce effects almost immediately and to have enough time for one or two mid-course corrections. This leaves very few alternatives. This is not the time to organize committees, debates or to vote.

The computation of an entropy footprint of each citizen is equivalent to establishing an entropy rating of an individual. Citizens, in addition to having an ID, or a Social Security Number, will also have a Personal Entropy Rating. How can such a rating be defined? Entropy data is subdivided into five categories or classes: Very Low, Low, Medium, High and Very High. The rating can be as simple as 5 for Very Low, 4 for Low, 3 for Medium, 2 for High and 1 for Very High. The rating itself will correspond to the number of votes one can cast in an election. This would eliminate one of democracy’s innate flaws – in elections the most likely outcome is that of non-governability. The ‘one man one vote’ approach, leads to an almost perfect and unfortunate balance whereby elections are won, or lost, by a very small fraction, causing ballot recounts and endless, empty debates. It is as if a sort of Central Limit Theorem were at work guaranteeing that the most likely outcome is always close the mean. Departing from the one man one vote rule would, with all likelihood, skew the results of elections favouring governability and facilitating the implementation of policies without the need to form unlikely and fragile coalitions. What we’re speaking of is a modernized version of democracy. The one man one vote approach is a tremendously simplistic one, which favours mediocrity within the society and makes it difficult for any parliament and government to do its job. The greatest crime of all is trying to make equal things that are not. If we really want to make a better society we must reward those that are better than others. Why should a criminal, after having served a jail sentence, be allowed one vote just like a doctor saving lives, or an engineer building homes? Even though we all agree, the question is politically incorrect as its answer inevitably insinuates a form of discrimination. However, rating the entropy footprint of individuals is not discrimination – it is simply a scientific means of quantifying how wasteful one’s lifestyle is. Such a system doesn’t punish anyone, it rewards those who deserve to be rewarded. The goal is not to tax citizens in any way, it is to free democracy from the gridlock of mediocrity allowing governments to govern and societies to function. We must realize that not everything in life has to follow a Gaussian distribution and not everything has to be sacrificed on the altar of linearity or compulsive averaging.

The underlying assumption behind an individual’s entropy footprint and rating is that one’s smartphone activity is a proxy of one’s lifestyle. Given the huge amount of time people spend on smartphones makes this assumption valid. For a vast majority of people, a smartphone is almost a physical extension of their bodies. Smartphones have become almost inseparable cybernetic appendages of the human body. Probably, in the near future, they will be implanted in some form directly under the skin. The entropy computation based on smartphone activity – this does not include any analysis of content of any sort –  does not include any subjective process of weighting – it is not a scoring system, it is an objective and scientific measure of entropy based on raw, unweighted, unfiltered data. The salient characteristic of this scheme is that it is independent of geography, race, political or sexual orientation or religion. It puts everyone on the same plane.


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Established originally in 2005 in the USA, Ontonix is a technology company headquartered in Como, Italy. The unusual technology and solutions developed by Ontonix focus on countering what most threatens safety, advanced products, critical infrastructures, or IT network security - the rapid growth of complexity. In 2007 the company received recognition by being selected as Gartner's Cool Vendor. What makes Ontonix different from all those companies and research centers who claim to manage complexity is that we have a complexity metric. This means that we MEASURE complexity. We detect anomalies in complex defense systems without using Machine Learning for one very good reason: our clients don’t have the luxury of multiple examples of failures necessary to teach software to recognize them. We identify anomalies without having seen them before. Sometimes, you must get it right the first and only time!

1 comment on “The Concept of Asymmetric Democracy

  1. Interesting approach to propose a methodology to help society to enhance the current poisoned democracy. I am also believe that there are 3 essential things to address in the current complexity world that I would like a point of view and if could be consider them a part of the entropy “frame” that is described.

    1. Speculation (in the past was more associated to the markets but nowadays it’s part of all)

    2. Subversion (always used to destroy the path to the true, very fought back in the past but ignored nowadays, perhaps it’s considered as fake news)

    3. Mindless Consumption (this one is consider in the book and I agree that it is part of the waste in the world and at the same time the most powerful tool to adjust or destroy humanity). The complexity of this discussion is enormous.

    Would like to highlight a several paramount of right concepts that could drives the society at least to a better way.

    Rewarding instead of penalize by average
    Without structure there is no control
    Entropy rate based in waste and energy consumption (entropy is a concept that I need to understand further)
    Complexity has bounds
    Entropy and lifestyle are inextricably linked

    It’s a profound desire in the society the approach to act by creating a new democracy leveraged by the level of entropy and casting by categories; is wiseful but very hard to be implemented in our current western society since we are plagued by socialism, forced progressivism and tremendous subverted mindset.

    Notwithstanding the above the possibility to reward and share this rating to the correct stakeholders could create a positive trend to motivate people to behave differently in all aspects. This is what we need to differentiate ourselves of the mediocrity.

    Data is the key driver to solve so many problems but data usually do not allow anyone to lie. I live in a country that has less than 4.0M inhabitants and with this approach would be so easy to solve several problems.

    Thanks for list so many interesting concepts shared in this book

    Max Oliveyra


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