DOUBLE COUNT POLICY THEORY: A CONTRIBUTION TO THE CRITIQUE OF POLITICAL PHILOSOPHY/ECONOMY

By Desmond Ayim-Aboagye (Ph.D.)
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By Desmond Ayim-Aboagye (Ph.D.)

1/20/2011 9:26:01 PM -

ABSTRACT
Elections are very important activities, which help nations to elect their prime leaders and parliamentarians. So whenever problems occur due to uncertainties that are involved, the nation in question could fall into pandemonium, which could lead to anarchy. The DCP theory is developed to solve the problem arising because of an incumbent, who refuses to give up power because his rival won an election with a smaller margin over him. These uncertainties in elections cause conflicts, and increase cost; but accurate measurement, which leads to easy acceptance of elections will reduce conflicts and save labour-time required to go over double-counting. This is all what the Double Count Policy Theory is concerned.

KEY WORDS: Politics, Theory, Elections, Incumbent, Policy, Double Count, Economy, Conflicts, Cultural factors.

1. Introduction
Uncertainty in elections causes conflicts, and increases cost; accurate measurement, which leads to easy acceptance of elections, reduces conflicts and saves labour-time required to go over double-counting. This is all what the Double Count Policy Theory (hereafter denoted DCP theory) is intended to explain. Accordingly, this article will give overview of the new theory and argue that, it acceptance into the academic discipline will offer the world a new manner of thrashing out debilitating conflicts in the political realm, which consequently shall influence positively the political economy of the country in question. The developed as well as the developing nations should make it a priority to honour the theory of double count policy, since it is one way of telling the world that peaceful transition of governments as well as cooperation between parties, are much better and preferred than unhealthy competition, which characterises the change of governments in the world around. What is the salient postulate of this theory? What are the principal arguments of the DCP Theory, which makes it so attractive in the modern world of politics as one way of solving problems hovering around an incumbent?

2. Postulate
According to the DCP Theory, the employment of election aggregates of the last two elections of the last two contestants of Presidential election will determine the accurate measurement, which of the two won the elections mathematically, and this measurement will ultimately reduce personal and social conflicts, as well as cost, which characterise modern elections. It reduces the cost effectivity of human labour-time, required to produce another election and services involved in the repetition or double-counting of elections.

3. DCP Theory
The choice of a leader for modern political arena is essential, as this determines the direction in which the nation shall take the next few years following a successful election. Without leadership in the country that has matters of its sovereignty in its own hands, the nation may be unable to function well concerning its very existence in its vicinity, especially, where probably there are known barbarians inhabiting in the area. The latter, having gotten the knowledge of a leadership vacuum, could take the advantage of this deficit and seize power in order to annex this former state into its own. The consequence is that many unwanted activities could lead the whole region to be in pandemonium and the cessations of its economic activities, which may be the life-blood of this nation's existence. As a result of this knowledge of the necessity of having a strong leader to chair matters, countries in the modern world just as the ancient world, had regarded the activities leading to the election of this salient figure important. Leadership symbolises power, which a sovereign nation utilises to champion its freedom and organisation of peaceful and serene atmosphere that is certainly conducive to progressive development.

The DCP theory states that political functions/activities cost enormous amount of money and, therefore, in event where certain situations crop up, which demand that alternative solutions should be considered which require additional economic investments, appropriate measures should be taken so as to reduce cost to minimum. This has to do with elections, campaigns, and many other programmes in the political scene, which demand the rationalisation of the economy of those actors involved. The theory purports to make rationalisation a working theory in its way into how certain states funds are utilised to provide adequate use of these scanty resources in order to give maximum efficiency.

By way of example, let us imagine that, we have three Presidential candidates, which include Presidential Candidate A, Presidential Candidate B, and Presidential Candidate C, who become involved in political campaigns leading to a general election in a particular country X. Assuming that each of these three Presidential Candidates represents a political party named Red Party, Blue Party, and Green Party respectively. At the first round of country X general election, no one of these candidates obtained the required fifty percent to enable the country X to declare either of the three parties' presidential candidates as the winner. Presidential Candidate A, Red Party obtained 49%, Presidential Candidate B, Blue Party obtained 47%, and Presidential Candidate C, Green Party acquired 4 %. The normal procedure in this instance demands that another election should be conducted in order to determine the real winner of this presidential election. Therefore, this is organised and followed as stipulated in the constitution of country X. Surprisingly, at the end of the second round-off, Presidential Candidate B, Blue Party obtained 51% and Presidential Candidate A, Red Party, who won the first general election disappointingly secured the rest of the votes, which was 49%. Here, there could be controversy occurring, especially, if Presidential Candidate A was the incumbent who still has the power in his hands. He may be tempted to hold on to power and, if possible, decide to harass the opposition leader who had genuinely won the determining election with only two percent lead. Presidential Candidate B, the Blue Party, is therefore, considered the legitimate leader who can be sworn in as the next President in the Country X.

4. DCP Theory Order
Political elections cost a huge sum of money, and sucks the nation in question's economy, even though it has the advantage of ensuring work to the masses, and also probably could stimulate the economy of the country for a short period. But, here, in this instance it has to do with two opponents thinking too much about themselves rather than the service to the people they intend to come and render. So, in order not to allow the country to revert to chaos and anarchy occurring, the theory of double count policy proposes that both Presidential Candidate A and Presidential Candidate B should be capable of utilising these election results to rule the next consecutive periods as Presidents of their country. Supposing Presidents A is to step aside for President B to rule for the next five years (Presidential term), then at the end of the period President A then becomes President and commences his term without going through any new general election in the country. Alternatively, if President A, the incumbent were to continue the term that he had already spent the first term, then President B, the challenger becomes the next President in office without going through another general election in the country.

4. 1. DCP Theory: Appraisal
Here in this context, we propose that the DCP theory has the crucial advantage of saving the country that is going through problems in terms of anarchy due to the poor personality problems of the incumbent. The theory should be used where the incumbent is mentally disturbed or is simply refusing to give power, which could lead to anarchy and destruction of vital resources of the economy of the nation in question. Before such a decision should be taken and given a go-ahead, the country has to take into consideration how the two elections of this incumbent, who is either mentally sick or simply is not accenting to honour elections, is close to 100%. An aggregate of the two previous elections making up to 96, 97, 98, or 99 of these candidates could be given a serious consideration. In the example given above, we see that both Presidential Candidate A, Red Party (49% +49% = 98%), and Presidential B, Blue Party (47% + 51% = 98%) had aggregates of 98%, which makes it unfair supposing we were to allow only Presidential Candidate B to utilise this election to rule as President of Country X.

This procedure is not to be recognised as the best to be applied, but if compelled to be used has the best advantage of ensuring the economising of the state's funds. This money then could be employed in developing other useful infrastructures in the country X. It provides the country in question adequate funds to concentrate on other needed developmental projects of the democratically-oriented country. It saves time from going through another general election, which consumes time, money, and other resources in the country. The double count policy is not to be used always; unless the nation faces an unwanted trouble in its political pursuit, which it has no other solution to the situation but this circumstance that we are describing here.

It sounds strange to many people who live in the well-democratic environment why an incumbent shall refuse to give up power to the new leader who has just been given power by the people. Why should he hang on to power if the people do not want him any longer? Why will this incumbent refuse to listen to the international community when the nations' citizens appeal to them? These kinds of problems may arise due to some internal factors that can be ascertained in the culture of the incumbent. Yet still, there may be other obvious factors that have to do with personality characteristics of the individual; it could be something he himself may not have control over them. So what are these factors that may compel individuals to hang on to power when their services are no longer needed by the people who have elected them earlier into these responsible positions?

5. DCP Theory: Reasonable Characteristics
5.1. Power Obsessed or “Political Robot”

Though there may be other serious circumstances which bring the situation of chaos, which result in this political conflict, experience has furnished scholars that political situations, where the incumbent refuses to give up power because of electoral defeat, has something to do with personality characteristics. We may say that there are some individuals, who by nature become obsessed with power such that the idea of hanging on to power becomes to them “a love affair.” This individual, who is considered “robot politician,” enjoys the act of being the leader ( i.e., reading speeches, signing contracts, enjoy the feasts, travelling to different countries with diplomatic passports and allowances, and the sundry show offs, which are associated with this position), though he does not put in much effort in carrying out the responsibilities that this leadership requires. It is easy to compare the “political robot” with the “thinking politician,” who trembles at the thought of being chosen to perform a function which requires too much effort and thinking to accomplish it. As the work is not done properly, but only the mere routine is cherished by him, the robot politician would hang on to power and will refuse to give up even when the citizens, who have chosen him want him to end his presidency or Prime Minister Post. It must be mentioned that this type of individual may be well educated or not, depending on the situation he finds himself, he would behave as if the idea of having been educated has no role to play with power obsession, and the manner one conducts himself in public and the political sphere as a whole.

5.2. Absolute Zenith Complex
Those who hang on to power even when political elections had been unfavourable to them usually have certain ideologies, which advise them to keep on maintaining the position. They may be psychotic individuals, such as Absolute Zenith Complex individuals, whose manners of dealing with the citizens who have voted them to power could be described as dictatorial. This behaviour is not discovered at first when he was fighting for the position. This may elude the eyes of the masses. This develops gradually as times go on when the individual finds out for himself that the people like and adore him as a saviour of the people. He in turn (due to his mental problems) commences persecuting the people he recognises as a threat to his leadership of tyranny and intimidation, especially the intellectuals in the society. This individual has a tendency of rigging in elections in order to win most of the prime leadership elections. He could easily think of changing the country's constitution in order to make the country one party state, so that he could rule for a long period. Since his problem is not only personality difficulty but mental problems, he could eliminate many people who oppose his “divine rule” in the country, including women and children, especially those families who their husbands had posed a threat to him. He shall spend a lot of the nation's money in building armaments in order to protect his tyrannical rule in the country. Because he depends on dreams and hallucinations to direct his behaviour, this politician is asserted to be the most unpredictable politician in the world.

5.3. The “King Gene”
In some societies in the world where there are kingship and its different associated ceremonies, certain individuals believe that they have the natural/inward gifts to be classified as live leaders, kings, or organisers for life. In Africa and certain tribal societies in the world, this thinking is especially pervasive as not only the leaders themselves, but also the citizens or the groups try to put these funny ideas into the minds of their leaders to make them behave like one. When the latter situation becomes the case, leaders who are liked by the people are encouraged to use these funny excuses and erroneous impressions to become tyrannical, dictators, or hang on to power for a long time. These thoughts are revealed to the leaders in the form of flattering words, such as “Osagyefo,” (the saviour) “Bediako,” (the deliverer) “the one who spoke once,” “Katakyie,” (the strong one) “Junior Jesus,” “Ogyeaman,” (protector) and etc. These are the kinds of flattery words that compelled many politicians (who in the beginning had no idea of becoming dictators) in West Africa to become dictators and, as a result, hanged on to power for life. The situation of poverty makes it that all the people working with him, including his ministers, try to flatter this incumbent to not give up power, but instead rule with iron fist, sometimes using different methods of intimidation to persecute his opponents. Their daily bread depends on his hanging on to power, which may be unlawful in the context of political power/election.

5. 4. “The Political Puppet”
Certain individuals, who have no power of their won in a position which they occupy due to the fact that they are being manipulated by an external figure, could decide to hang on to power. The latter may be military leaders who use their access to the guns to make such “invincible” demands and threats, which unfortunately the former becomes the one that bears the blame. The latter may also be psychotic individuals who have no contact with reality, but know how to manipulate people to do what they want. The former may also be the asocial individuals, who respond to command (automatic) without making necessary efforts to (think themselves) rid themselves from the former debilitating demands, which may be detrimental to society's peace and tranquillity. The political puppet has been found in so many countries before, including the developed as well as developing nations. In the developed nations, these puppet leaders were so many years ago manipulated by some Kings, who had little contact with reality to have carried out their policies of torture or manipulation to get decisions the latter wanted. The United States of America, France, Sweden, and many other European nations had experienced “the reign of torture and terror” by their Kings who made certain policies, which affected the people in their Kingdoms. Those politicians, who found themselves in the midst of these reigns of terror, had the most difficult times to carry out those unfavourable policies, which carried devastations and pain to the people.

Now that the circumstances surrounding the personalities who hang on to power have been unveiled, it is essential to consider the advantages and disadvantages of the DCP theory. The theory has some important considerations, which must be discussed and be proposed to be investigated into later. We all know that in the world of science, we may have some objections as to why certain paradigms or theories are not workable. Those criticisms that are usually levelled against them are not to taken as something that make these theories useless, rather they are the objections that compel researchers to make further investigations into the skeleton of these theories to see whether they can make a modification of them or suggest alternative manners, which will ensure that the theories become powerful and workable with time. Let us now discuss further those considerations regarding the advantages and disadvantages of DCP theory.

6.1. DCP Theory Advantages
Politics is a very sensitive subject, which deals with diverse groups of people in interaction. Some are well educated while others are less educated as well as ignorant concerning many things in the country. Here, one also meets different people with personality characteristics; there are others that are ambitious to the extent that whatever they are engaged in, they shall make it “do and die business.””Either I win or you also don't.” This means, they will think that the election to be made will determine their success in the future, so if they do not win they will be losers for the rest of their lives. This is the root of the motivation to use different means at their disposals to help them win or character-assassinate and maintain the winning position. The DCP theory, in the first place, ensures that the two people involved are given the best possibility to determine the real winner, which will lead the country that is about to go apart to gather courage and move above the anarchy state of affairs. The method to add the last two results in order to determine elections aggregates, give the best accurate picture to the two candidates to know the one who really won the overall percentages from the two elections. It brings some fairness into the political arena. Apart from saving the country from disintegration, the theory also saves the country from going over to do any double-counting made earlier of the elections, which consumes time and money of the state as well as undermining the whole idea of democracy. As one party president takes the seat after the other, and then rule with the same dignity as they won individually, so are both parties going to come together and engage in cooperation on the most sensitive part of political activities, that is, elections to determine the leader of the country and the strengths of the individual parties. This procedure leaves no room for criticisms, which non-democratic agents, such as the military personal with dictatorial tendencies, usually throw against politicians and those who adhere to the use of democratic principles in the country.

The theory also takes into consideration the weakness of human nature, that is, that there may be some people that despite their education and training, still have some weaknesses and personality problems. Those individuals that are not only weak, but also have mild mental problems of some kind, are gradually lured from going out in peace from the power seat, after they had been negotiated with to have the last term they need.

Finally, the DCP theory educates the world inhabitants that peaceful transition of governments in terms of democracy and the cooperation, which usually occur between parties is much better and preferred than unhealthy competition, which characterises the change of governments in different parts of the modern societies. It is the best method for those countries that had not been capable of banishing from its leaders non-democratic tendencies, such as, dictatorship and the use of military coup de' ´tat.

6.2. DCP Theory Disadvantages
As usually there are many different parties in the country, the DCP theory could be infringing on the right of other powerful parties to contest an election to choose the most powerful and important leader in the country. This could function well in societies where two party systems or one party system are. If the DCP theory were to be used in countries where there are more than one party system, people will not only oppose it, but they will think this will enhance the opportunity for many individuals who find themselves in the incumbent position to behave unusual and protest the results of properly conducted elections in the country. Though the use of this procedure to solve problems relating to anarchy is good, it will allow certain candidates whose characters are questionable to be able to hang on to power and become Presidents of their countries. This could probably lower the standard of the office, if anyone who did not like the official results but yet managed to obtain higher aggregates could be made to become the next President. Finally, the procedures which the constitution of the country stipulates with regard to the election of their leaders should be followed, and until these procedures had been changed, people would not consider this approach which the DCP theory prescribe to be useful. But these weaknesses flaw aside, the theory contains the most accurate method of assessing the candidate who obtained the best aggregates and percentages in order to win a general election. The adding of the two elections of the candidates, offers the possibility to state in principle the one who mathematically won the election in the country. At the same time, it carries with it some fairness, which both candidates could agree easily upon without failing to comprehend.

Concluding Remarks
The DCP theory should be capable of allowing two persons (both national heroes, but one due to problems of a personal one, is not able to conduct himself well and so has allowed this debilitating problem to crop up), to become leaders. The theory should never be applied in the context of a political dictator, who did not want to go through election, but seized power through the barrel of the gun.

The theory will help all societies that have not been able to overcome dictatorship tendencies in their leaders. It is true that there are some educated individuals who would succumb to pressure to give up power when the defeat by their opponents came with a smaller margin, but these individuals are few in the world except the regions where democracy had developed to a higher level standard. Another explanation which people had used to explain the behaviour of incumbent who gave up power for his rival was the “same tribe reason”. If an incumbent knows that the one to take power from him comes from his tribe, and not only that, but he speaks the same language with him, he would easily give up power and leave the seat immediately. This shows that the problems having to do with hanging on to power by incumbent has something to do with the prevalence of different tribal groups in Africa and certain societies in the world. Where the people speak the same language (as a result of language conditioning) and have the same culture, these tendencies are minimised.

There are some useful lessons to be learned whenever problems occur with elections, but when the problem concerns the country on the verge of returning to anarchy, the issue becomes different. Countries must meticulously and systematically look for urgent solutions to what have brought these problems to occur. The DCP theory saves the country that often finds problems regarding dictatorship, which results from the incumbent failure to honour an election which a clear winner was not declared. The employment of election aggregates to determine who wins a general election could provide accurate information of who really won the election mathematically.

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Name and Research Interests:
Desmond Ayim-Aboagye holds PhD in Psychology of Religion from Uppsala University. Having studied and researched in Educational Science, especially in the area of Political Steering and Reforms, he continues in his research as an Associate Professor in the Science of Religion, Åbo Akademi University. His research interest is African Psychology, Education, Philosophy of Religion, and Political Ideas. He combines these various areas to comprehend the African mind in the steering of himself in his society. Especially, why do some incumbents resolve to hang on to power, even when the people, the repository of power, had chosen another rival over them?

Address: Solistvägen 49
756 54 Uppsala, Sweden
E-mail: [email protected]
Telephone: +46 73 963 7253

Disclaimer: "The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Modern Ghana. The contents of this article are of sole responsibility of the author(s). Modern Ghana will not be responsible or liable for any inaccurate or incorrect statements contained in this article." © Desmond Ayim-Aboagye (Ph.D.).

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