www.whyville.net Jul 4, 2003 Weekly Issue

City Hall
City Hall

The Whyville Senate

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The Romans, arguably the most powerful nation of the ancient world, had a Senate.

The United States, arguably the most powerful nation of the modern world, has a Senate.

Now it's time for Whyville to have one. And so it begins!

Starting next week, Whyvillians who wish to run for our town's first elected public office will get to post a special petition in City Hall. In these petitions, you'll be expected to write out your "platform" -- what you declare you will attempt to accomplish as a Whyville Senator.

But first, we need you to explain to us what a platform is! Read up on it -- find out how the U.S. Senate does it, as well as other countries -- and write in your explanations to the Whyville Times.

Other key topics to write about include what a "candidate" is. What does it mean to be a candidate? What should Whyville expect out of its Senators, and even out of the people running for the Senate? What's good, what's bad? Be aware, those of you who plan to run for election: making promises you can't deliver on is a dangerous proposition!

The candidates' petitions will have two or three weeks to gather votes. The top platform petitions will then be selected for a run-off election, and the candidates will be expected to come to a key Greek Theater debate, where they'll come on stage and be given special chat powers for the time of the debate. Final voting will happen the next day.

The one winner of this election will become Whyville's First Senator. They will receive a special Senator wig from Akbar and be party to plans for the next election -- assuming this one is successful, that is.

Most Senators in the "real" world have term limits -- how long should a citizen get to be a Senator in Whyville? What about public disclosure: should you, the public, get to know the chat history of the candidates? What if they have a history of password theft, racism, bad language or cyber sex? Does that matter in a Senator, and do you have the right to know about it?

Write to the Times, and include supporting arguments from real world newspapers and magazines!

If you have questions about the Whyville Senate, please email city-management@whyville.net. And remember, NO ONE in Whyville should EVER ask for your password or personal information (that's stuff they can use to find you, including your last name and school!). City Workers, Senators, Safety Patrol members and Y-Mail Helpers -- none of these people need that info from you!


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