Societies Very Different From Ours, Because I Just Made Them Up
3 min read

Societies Very Different From Ours, Because I Just Made Them Up

Please don't create a DAO to test any of these.

Inspired by Legal Systems Very Different From Ours, Because I Just Made Them Up.


Sortitionites randomly elect members to make decisions. These members don't decide what to do; instead, they are assigned proposals to vote on.

To keep things moving, all Sortitionites are required to vote at least once per week. Normally, this would create a scenario that is ripe for bribery. The Sortitionites have thought about this.

There are many Sortitionites, so bribing every potential voter would be very expensive. Early on, a few Sortitionites tried selling their votes to the highest bidder, but interest dried up when a blockchain-based ZK-SNARK system was implemented. Without a way for voters to to prove how they voted, bribery became much more involved and the thugs moved on to other things.

Most Sortitionites are too busy to have an opinion on every proposal, so they outsource their thinking to political parties. There are many political parties that compete on publishing recommended decisions for voters. The Green Party publishes compelling reasons why Sortitionites should approve carbon credit proposals, while the Socialist Party makes a case for wealth redistribution schemes. The Chaos Party rolls a dice for every new proposal and the Astrology Party has a complicated system for determining how to vote based on planetary alignment.

The parties generally ignore each other, but they all pay a fortune in advertising fees to get their arguments in front of as many voters as possible. Most people agree this is fine.

Over time, a Sortitionite's voting history is aggregated and displayed publicly. Since Sortitionites have a multi-party system, it ends up looking like an ancestry report; you might be 17% libertarian, 2% anarchist, 6% democratic socialist, etc.

As a happy accident, it turns out this is also an excellent predictive system for figuring out who to date, so the Sortitionists have an incredibly low divorce rate.


The Paritarians pay everyone the same hourly wage. This means that high-paying-but-soul-crushing jobs are basically nonexistent.

Paritarians have almost no corporate lawyers, investment bankers, or management consultants. On the flip side, Paritarians have more artists, forest rangers, and librarians per capita than anyone else.

To incentivize people to take unpopular jobs, the Paritarians have instituted a rule: some careers can be pursued simultaneously, allowing you to work two jobs at once.

Police officers with an EMT license receive double pay while on the job. Taxi drivers are encouraged to act as city tour guides, providing historical narratives to passengers for additional wages. Chefs in public cafeterias can also offer cooking classes, enhancing their income while sharing culinary skills.

This helps for some careers, but there is one other trick that the Paritarians use for really important jobs; since firefighters can be woken up at any time for an emergency, a court decision ruled that some jobs can be done while sleeping.

There is only one job that gets paid 24 hours a day, 7 days a week: plumbers, who are constantly dealing with other people's shit.


The Controversians only pass laws that might be a bad idea.

For a law to pass, between 40-60% of Controversians must disagree with the proposal. The more polarizing an issue, the more likely it is to be legislated. As a result, their legal system is filled with unconventional laws.

For instance, traffic lights are optional after midnight, and every citizen must own a musical instrument, though practicing is voluntary. Their parliament sessions are broadcasted live and are more popular than sports events, as representatives engage in heated debates over proposals like mandatory siestas or reverse taxation systems.

Hotly contested topics will flip-flop every few months as the representatives push through legislation. In practice, this results in a system where both sides need to actually implement their proposed ideas rather than endlessly discussing theoretical merits. After a few rounds of seeing how laws work in practice voters tend to gravitate to one side, ending the debate.

Despite the chaos, Controversians maintain that this system weeds out apathy and ensures active civic participation, creating laws that are as unique as their society.