Nuzkwamians consider their country to be very democratic. In fact, if asked directly, they will say that their country is more democratic than any country that has a multi-party representative system. This, despite the fact that they don’t have equal universal suffrage, term limits, regular elections, or political parties, and do have a monarch who has real political powers.
How do they justify their claim to be a democracy? Well, they do have very wide participation in government. There are numerous councils, committees, juries and parliaments at various levels which are filled, not by election, but by casting lots. Some are ad hoc, and run only briefly. Others are long-standing. There are some that meet only at evening or the weekend, enabling people to take part while keeping their day job.
Huge sums of money that might otherwise be spent on election campaigns are saved, and people do not depend on the patronage of donors or a political party (indeed cannot benefit from such) to gain membership of a committee.
The system is not equal, though. Not all people can sit on all committees, and when people do sit on committees, their vote is weighted according to their qualifications. There is a set of exams and tests that all adult citizens must take before they are allowed to vote in committees, and the score on these test and exams determines the weight of a person’s vote. People can resit exams to raise the value of their vote. Some people sit the exams many times in an effort to get their vote higher.
Apart from the exam system, which is an innovation, this system is closer to ancient Greek democracy than modern representative systems.
In my conversations so far, I have not yet met a Nuzkwamian who is seriously unhappy with this system. In fact, the people generally seem rather smug about it. Citing Plato, they claim that elected politicians tend to be good at deceiving the voters by sophistry, rather than actually making sensible decisions that are in the interest of the masses. I have tried to convince them to the contrary, that most elected politicians are honest and competent, but so far to no avail.