on February 1, 2012 by Nigel in News, Comments (0)

First Mayoral Debate Transcript

Below is a transcript of the questions and responses asked at Nigel’s first debate for the 2012 Mayoral Election. A more complete transcript is also available in the election archives.

Nigel nods. “Speaking of fourth wall violations, since the mayoralty has social objections rather than roleplaying ones, could a characters’ roleplaying obligations interfere with the social responsibilities the mayor has? How would you reconcile it?”

JasonRDT earlowers. “Unfortunately, there’s a very real chance of that with me. I’m a freshman in university, for one, and my schedule varies from quarter to quarter. That said, I try to be on as often as possible.”

fluffy says, “I wouldn’t. I like to toe the line between genre-aware and simply insane, as one can see clearly in my pinfo.”

Enkeli grins, “Being a bar proprietress and already something of a public figure, I would seek to enterweave the two as much as possible. Key to that would be to avoid getting ‘stuck’ in long term RPs that would keep me “away”. Planning is key there, to avoid letting one responsibility trample the other.”


JasonRDT arfs, “Man, I think I misinterpreted the question!”

BunnyHugger says, “I disagree that the mayoralty has ‘social rather than roleplaying’ obligations. In fact I believe the office of the Mayor could be involved more in roleplaying, in that it could stand as the elected representative of SpinDizzy in contexts such as the past landing plot. If elected I intend to incorporate the post into my role playing. As for resolving the IC/OOC issues, I don’t think I would have that problem the way some other candidates might, because I am not IC/OOC very different and my intentions to be helpful, friendly, organize things, and so on, are IC as well as OOC intentions for me. I think this is more of a problem for someone running as, say, an SED candidate.”

Ali says, “I don’t really see them as being at odds, to be honest. We’re here, and to improve the experiences of others, we do things. Whether those things are strictly localized or cross the barrier into Ar’El seems to be immaterial. I can say that I’ve been looking forard to an opportunity to contribute more.”

Nigel says, “Ah. Clarification, Mister Drifter-Trenner. This isn’t a question about availability, but about whether or not there’s a potential conflict, say, with running public office while also an agent of, oh I don’t know, some Wallaby-form incarnation of Cobra Commander, hypothetically.”

Nigel says, “But these are good answers, all the same! Even if my phrasing wasn’t perfect.”

Nigel looks to Azure.

Azure yips, “The main problem would be reconciling adversarial roleplays that would put one at odds with others or make one unavailable for a long time. I’d not make any attempt to avoid either or even keep them in private.”

Azure yips, “But, that said, even without being mayor, since the other people in the world are people with their own feelings and such, one would have to drop out of narrative to interact with people ANYWAY.”

Ali says, “I would expect such obligations to press hardest on members of avowed evil organizations, or those with marked communication difficulties.”

Azure yips, “Being a mayor in that regard would simply be the same things one would do while being a good citizen.”

JasonRDT grins. “Now, who’s saying I can’t be mayor and work for an evil organization at the same time? I’ll concede that being an SED agent may not mesh well with mayorial duties, but I’ll manage my time well enough.”

Azure asks Jason, “Will you annotate your calendar with the days you plan to be the charming and conscientious mayor versus the days you plan to be the mad and villainous researcher and post it so your constituency knows when to approach you on important issues and when to run away?”

Featherwing says, “Oh, well, I personally don’t think so, unless an ethics committee is formed. However, should These things take precident too much, I believe that there may very well be conflicts, although I personally don’t see what the IC/OOC issue is, as we are all more or less IC while here, anyway, even in ooc areas.”

JasonRDT arfs, “Well, I’ll promise that I won’t use you for horrific experiments unless you step forward first, but I’ll make myself available at all times. On-duty, I’m all right with you leaving messages via the MUCKwide Pager System.”

Nigel flips a card. “The next question concerns holidays, because after all the mayor’s main duty is running events for holidays. Where do Holidays come from? That is, what merits making a new holiday in your opinion?”

Enkeli smiles, “I think the most important thing about holidays is the distribution of them. It’s best to have them somehwat — not necessarily exactly — even throughout hte year so that there’s always something going on. What merits a good holiday idea should be based on popularity and what the population enjoys. We can experiment with new holiday ideas, and see if they take; if they don’t, we’ll drop them and try something else.”

fluffy says, “When a mommy holiday and a daddy holiday love each other very much, they each take a genetic sample of one another and combine them using various gene-splicing techniques before embedding them into a previously-infertile chicken egg.”

Ali says, “Why, the local culture, of course. Holiday reform is one of the major points of my campaign, and I would lose no time in collecting input from the local populace and polling them to determine for certain what events are most enjoyed, which if any should be removed, and what new ones should be added.”

Ali says, “I already have some queued up for discussion.”

Azure yips, “What merits making a new holiday is public interest. If there’s a day people want to commemorate, an activity people enjoy enough that we may as well reserve a spot and do it once a year, or if there’s a concept people find important and meaningful, pick an empty spot in the calendar and pencil something in. And if people don’t like it, then cut it from the chronology and consign it to damnatio memori.”

JasonRDT rubs his chin. “First and foremost, public opinion is where holidays should come from. The point of the mayor is to represent his/her/its people, after all, and holidays being one aspect of our culture, the people should have the first say on this.”

BunnyHugger says, “I am in favor of retaining the holidays instituted by the Beltrami/Portia administration, because I am a great admirer of our first Mayor and wish to continue her legacy. However, the holidays themselves are so vaguely defined that they can be made into anything we want, and if something catches hold then it can stay and if not then it can be replaced with a different type of event next time. Morality Day, for instance, has done well establishing itself as a day for moral dilemmas and morality plays. Iceberg Day is currently ill-defined but that just means it can be given any sort of event we want. (I would probably run it as a mini Winter Games and see how that goes.) Those holidays were chosen by a poll at the time. In future I would probably not multiply holidays unless the electorate wished it, and perhaps that could be established by a further poll. I think the current slate of holidays plus the ‘Earth holidays’ that we often have events for do fill our holiday needs pretty well, though, since t”

BunnyHugger says, “That leaves us with at least one per month, a goodly amount.”

Featherwing says, “A new holiday should be one that brings everyone together, be it for fun or sport. If this is ignored by the mayor, then what’s the point of having them? I will make sure that everyone will have fun, and listen to them whilst preparing it. Public interest is also a concern as my fellow constituents have also mentioned.”

fluffy says, “Every day should be a holiday.”

BunnyHugger says, “However, I certainly don’t think all events need to be about ‘holidays’ either.”

fluffy says, “That way there is less for the mayor to keep track of, right?”

You say, “As a follow-up, some holidays are more popular than others. Do you think we have a problem with too many holidays? If so how would should the mayor improve matters?”

fluffy says, “We should use a random number generator to procedurally generate as many holidays as possible and then allow the better ones to float to the top, so to speak. It is the scientific way!”

JasonRDT arfs, “I’m not sure the problem is ‘too many holidays’ as much as ‘too many vague holidays’, as some of my colleagues up here have said.”

Ali says, “We have a problem with too many holidays that aren’t widely popular, or are improperly focused.”

BunnyHugger says, “I think vague is good as it allows them to be developed into whatever we choose without making a whole new calendar every year.”

JasonRDT arfs, “Tell me, how holidays can most of us recite?”

Enkeli nods, “That’s the thing, we have a lot of … shall we say, special interest holidays that many people head-scratch over.”

BunnyHugger says, “And if the holidays have not been ‘popular’ it’s because events have not been run for them.”

Ali says, “I strongly support pruning ones that are unwanted to replace them with ones that will be widely enjoyed.”

BunnyHugger says, “I think people are mixing up cause and effect.”

BunnyHugger says, “The holidays are not popular because no one has really created focused activities for them, not the other way around.”

Nigel nods. “This is an old one, but a good one: What accomplishment on SpinDizzy are you most proud of? As in, something you did or helped do.

fluffy says, “Terraforming an unused portion of a mountain range into a Mad Scientific Laboriatorial Concern and Tiki Lounge, of course. That led to some great interactions, although they did of course peter off all too quickly. I blame my parent.”

JasonRDT earperks. “I think I was a good participant in several of the bigger events here–well, the ones I managed to stay awake through, narcolepsy and all that. The landing and repair last year comes to mind.”

Ali sighs deeply. “Not nearly as much as I’d like. I’ll have to give you a set of three… for development, the Whiplash roller coaster; for RP, my participation in the Scylla and Charybdis event; and for location building, the Graveyard of Dreams.

Enkeli giggles, “Well, let’s see. I managed to ‘land’ here without dying, that’s a good one. Oh, and I made a relatively enduring hangout spot that is enjoyed by a lot of the population.”

Featherwing says, “My biggest accomplishment thus far would be to help expand the pavilion hall at last year’s Fair. It made me feel as proud as NBC to see people enjoy my information on my clan and generally commune as such…”

Ali chuckles. “And I’ve worked at all the popular bars.”

BunnyHugger says, “The World’s Fair, which included not just the organization of events over a nearly three week period, but the co-ordination of the building of Edgeworld Park, SpinDizzy’s first amusement park, to serve as its venue. I did not build all of the Park nor did I run all of the events, but I worked with many people to bring about both. I was very proud when I saw people enjoying the Park and the events.”

Azure yips, “To be honest, the thing I’m most proud of in terms of feeling like I set out to do something and did it well was building an area people liked enough they went and roleplayed in on their own, tell me was ‘pretty’ even now, and were sad to leave behind.”

Azure yips, “All the stuff here I really take any pride is basically whatever affected and was remembered by folks.”

Nigel nods. “As long as we’re trawling through the past: We have nocturnal, diurnal, and crepuscular citizens. How would you help those on a different time zone who rarely sync up with you personally? After all we have a somewhat different set of people on the opposite ‘shift.'”

Enkeli smiles, “It’s difficult to reach-out to people who live on the ‘flip side’ so to speak. I try to be around at a lot of varied times so I have overlap with most people. That being said, it might be a fun idea to try and have more of a nocturnal ambassador to help reach out to the people whom I’m not able to interact with directly.”

Azure yips, “I have, when running roleplays that have spanned multiple days, made an attempt to break them up so that different parts are in different shifts. And in the future when coordinating events with other folks, I would try to get people to run them in time spots I can never get to myself, even if we’d only be able to coordinate asynchronously.”

fluffy says, “That sounds like work, Nigel, and as my platform is completely predicated on my crushing apathy and inability to do anything that exists outside of my own little bubble of existence, I… think I just answered the question.”

Ali says, “That’s an interesting question, Nigel. I think I’d have to expand my administration to include at least one person from each shift who can best represent the interests of the time zones. As a random sleeper, I’ve been a charter member of each of them, and have had the fortune to spend plenty of time with each ‘phase’ of the constiutuency.”

BunnyHugger says, “Good question. I think one thing I would do is appoint someone to be my official ‘morning shift co-ordinator.’ (I myself am sometimes active both afternoon and evening.)”

BunnyHugger says, “Er, I’d think of a better title than that.”

JasonRDT arfs, “I’m on at…really weird hours of the night. While it’s not something I can do healthily for every day, I certainly do it on occasion. …You may have seen me berating Uncle Azure to get to bed, but, eh, that’s a bit hypocritical.”

BunnyHugger adjusts her ribbon. “Everyone likes a nice title, right?”

Ali says, “I do know that I’m lucky enough to be close to people from each timezone, including diurnal Jaxen, crepuscular Ping, and nocturnal Claude.”

Featherwing says, “Again, this goes back to communication with the general populace, I’d attempt to communicate with people who contact me saying they have an issue with timing of events and either find a time where the optimum amount of people can attend or rework the event itself.”

Azure yips, “Oh, I know. I just figured Dragoncat was asking about the termin general.”

Azure shrugs, “Anyway!”

Nigel says, “Mmmn. Thank you. This next one might be a big one, so feel free to take your time if you need it: Why should people rank you as their #1? What uniquely distinguishes you amongst all the candidates?”

fluffy says, “Chromatophores.”

fluffy shimmers and reforms to a critter (polka-dot).

JasonRDT arfs, “Well, for one thing, I’m affiliated with the SED. This may come as a negative for most people, but consider–I’d be a great lifeline between the SED and the, uh, general populace. Also, I think I’m relatively inoffensive and a decent conversation-maker…”

JasonRDT arfs, “Oh, geez, fluffy’s got me beat.”

JasonRDT does the defeated fist-swing.

Azure yips, “You, the fine people of this world, ought to rank me as number one because I am utterly and completely corrupt. I care about nothing more than an endless river of the currency of our world. Of course since our world is a social and literary community of maverick creative writers in competitive and cooperative unconstrained creation, the currency that underlies it is strong relationships between the players, creativity, appreciation of other’s work, interest, and involvement. And I will sell out any principle and to the devil with the naysayers to fill our coffers with those things.”

BunnyHugger says, “Every candidate promises to run events. I have a proven track record of doing so, and of co-ordinating with others to organize larger ones. Both my past accomplishments and the likelihood that I will be reliable in continuing them recommend me as a candidate, and would do so even if I had nothing else to offer. [cont’d]”

JasonRDT cheers Azure!

Featherwing says, “I’m unique in my auric powers, my diverse shapeshifting and sizeshifting, and my affable personality. I’m very friendly and easy to approach. Hmm… what else?”

Enkeli giggles, “Well, there’s a lot of reasons to pick me. I’ve been a neutral party since arriving in SpinDizzy, and I’ve tried to run a safe-haven for all comers. I’ve run a number of public roleplays and I’ve worked with other people to try and make sure everyone who’s wanted to participate could. I try to be a consensus builder, and a good listener. People seem to like me and get along with me well, and I’m rarely a controversial figure or someone who starts unpleasantries. And finally, I have a lot of ideas for fun play for the whole MUCK, and again the track record to get it done. While I acknowledge I haven’t been around much in the past year, it’s been due to a RL mess that is fully taken care of and I really look forward to give back to the place I call home.”

BunnyHugger says, “However, I do have other things to offer. I have ideas for how to make a more robust role for the Mayor here on SpinDizzy, I am happy to help others with things that I know how to do well (building) and things I am learning to do (MUF), I strive to be ethical (both IC and OOC, though not quite as comically OOC), and I really, truly, and deeply love SpinDizzy, even when I’m not shouting about that fact at 5 a.m. on Christmas due to excessive wine intake.”

Chitter starts waving his hands in a “stop” gesture frantically at that last part.

Ali says, “I am by vocation and avocation a developer and storyteller. I know better than to rely on my own judgement in the face of the wishes of the people. I furthermore promise that my administration will be much like the popular Jaxen administration, only more so – as silver is grey, only more so. By nature, I leave marks on the people and places where I am, and as mayor I could guarantee that they are positive ones.”

Ali pauses and looks down.

Ali says, “It would be a small dream come true to be able to give back to one of the few places that has accepted me.”

Ali says, “This is the world that took me in. If I am elected, there would be nothing more important.”

Nigel says, “The next question is a little awkward, but not everything is always sunshine and roses–unless the weather machine is misbehaving, and you never leave the Garden. So what do you think our biggest problem is? How could the mayor, and you in particular, go about improving it?”

fluffy says, “I can also say with certainty that I will never stick my fingers into anything, as I have no fingers to stick into them.”

fluffy says, “I would simply allow the problems to work themselves out. I’m not much of a people person.”

Enkeli strokes her chin, thoughtfully, “Our biggest problem? Well, apathy, perhaps. We have kind of a lot of people who sit around and seem to want to have something to do, but can’t figure out what. I’d like to help fix that. We sort of have a subset of people who want to run things and have ideas, and a subset of people who want to play those ideas, but nothing that bridges and coordinates. As mayor, I would see to that; I would help the people who want to tell storeis coordinate, build, and schedule. And I would help people who want to play encourage the kinds of stories they’d like to see. My goal would be to have -something- happen at least once a month that is publically accessible and entertaining.”

Ali says, “Frankly, I think SpinDizzy’s biggest problems are not very big at all. The website. The map. The useless holidays. Repairing the small problems that are our biggest problems is the fundamental mainstay of my campaign platform. The Silverlode administration will be an administration that really *administrates*, cleaning up the small amount of cruft that always accumulates over time.”

fluffy says, “Enkeli, are you saying I am a part of the problem?”

BunnyHugger says, “I think our biggest problem could, at times, be passivity or lack of involvement. That’s where stirring things up with events, particularly longer term events like the landing plot (which I did not organize) or the Fair and Olympics (which I did) comes in. It changes things up for a while and I noticed some people getting involved who weren’t just the standard active crew. I also think at times there may be a communication problem between the administration and the players, and so one of my plans is to incorporate an Ombudsman role into Mayor’s duties.”

JasonRDT arfs, “Perhaps the biggest problem is…maybe it’s only me, but there doesn’t seem to be much… Well, ‘cohesion’? Between the members of our society. It’s not something I can single-handedly cure, but I can help get it into motion. There’s also a bunch of people who’s online on the MUCK, but…never really seem to do much. I also don’t know how well I can engage them myself, but if elected mayor I will try to bring them in.””

JasonRDT arfs, “Also I’m a shameless advertiser and will try to bring people here into the MUCK, because I think we could do with more people.”

Enkeli giggles to fluffy, “I politely disagree with your platform,” she says, playfully.

Azure yips, “I think the biggest problem is that a large number of people have ideas but are afraid to put them into action, while others don’t really know how to get involved or feel like they’ll be a ‘burden’ or that they won’t be wanted in various events. These are two separate things and they would probably be resolved in two different ways. For the first, perhaps the best way of doing it would be to keep an ear out for people who are new or timid when they mention something they’d like to see or opine about something that might be interesting. Rather than just telling them to ‘go do it’ (which can be a bit daunting at first) or just taking the suggestion and running with it, see if someone who has more experience coordinating and developing things would be willing to help them, providing Roleplay Training Wheels and a bit of encouragement throughout.”

fluffy says, “So do I!”

fluffy says, “Seriously, don’t vote for me.”

Azure yips, “Second, keeping a nice diversity of events. We already do an excellent job of it, what with high-plot and occasionally terrifying stuff and pleasant games and social interactions, but we might be able to see what some of our more wallflowerish residents open up for and try to offer a bit more of it. That and some people don’t quite feel like they have permission to get involved if they’re invited, so it never hurts to ask them to come out and play.”

BunnyHugger says, “I think having public events that encourage IC play without being RP intensive is actually less intimidating to the sort of folks Azure is talking about. I love RP and think public RPs are great, don’t get me wrong, but something like ‘come watch people smash up cars and hoot and holler’ is very low risk for people and yet encourages interaction.”

Featherwing makes a pondering posture as he thinks, “Well, I’d have to say, I’ve noticed relative lack of the cross communication between the event coordinator and the populace for times,” He paces a bit behind his podium as he says, “I plan on either building a small committee as each ‘major’ event nears and working with them and the populace to finish things, especially during the planning phase of things.”

Azure grins at BunnyHugger, “And then we can introduce the Narrative and bind them in spidersilk strands of thought that they won’t even notice at first, until little by little they’re caught up inescapably in a continuity and so intoxicated and addicted on literary device they can’t help but love it?

BunnyHugger says, “Possibly, esteemed rival.”

Nigel shuffles some cards and writes something on one enigmatically, “What do you think the MUCK’s biggest opportunity for growth is and how would you exploit it.”

Ali says, “Which kind of growth, Nigel?”

Austin says, “Well, I understand we’re due for a big influx of players when FluffMuck shuts down in 1999.”

Nigel grins crookedly. “That’s a good question, Miss Alisande. But it’s open to interpretation for a reason.”

fluffy says, “I definitely prefer the non-RP non-story-arc public interaction events, myself.”

fluffy says, “I mean I have a personal arc but I wouldn’t expect anyone else to keep track of it or stay involved or anything. Nor would I have any idea where to begin with all of the dozens of ongoing stories that are occurring here.”

Azure peers at fluffy, “I’ve been keeping track of your personal arc and trying to stay involved.”

BunnyHugger says, “I think the biggest opportunity for growth is generally drawing people from the larger MUCKs who may be feeling disenchanted or alienated in those communities. I tend to specifically invite people that I think would be a good fit. But of course, just trying to headhunt isn’t going to be enough. I think having a better Web presence would help, and a better description on things like Mudconnector. To some degree, I think the SpinDizzy News (a project I am involved with, of course) helps with that, but we need a good front gate in the form of a better Web site.”

Ali says, “I’d say I’d prefer to keep ‘growth’ to a moderate rate. We’re a very open society here, blessedly free of cliques and short on places where people hide and never interact. The best thing would be to make sure that there is something here for MUCKers of every stripe, and allow our news to spread by the rod of mouth of contented or amazed people.”

BunnyHugger says, “Fluffy, I recall that you did some really fun performances in the Winter Olympics back in 2010. Weren’t you in the toboggan run, getting injured a lot?”

fluffy says, “I was! It was painful. I’m glad you enjoyed it.”

BunnyHugger grins.

Chitter tries to make some signal to BunnyHugger.

BunnyHugger says, “Uh, I mean I’m sorry you crashed, but it was a good show.”

Nigel appears to be choking on his cigarette.

JasonRDT arfs, “Are you all right, Mr Nigel?”

JasonRDT arfs, “Would you like some water?”

Nigel waves Jason away, still chuckle-gagging.

Enkeli hrms, “The biggest opportunity for growth? Well, that’s a tricky question. We could try doing advertisements on communities like certain other locales have — I’m willing to pony up some funds to do that. We could have some sort of ‘bring a friend’ event where everyone attempst to bring a friend on the MUCK for a day and then we do something fun as a group. REfining our web presence would help a lot, too, to modernize and clean up our site a bit. We’ve taken some big steps inthat direction already, but we need to finish the job.”

Azure yips, “But, I think our biggest opportunity for growth is simply to do our best to make this the community we’d most want for ourselves and anyone we’d like. And if we do well enough people we like will fly in to see what it’s like and find themselves unable to escape.”

JasonRDT arfs, “Hm. Well. I’ll say that in terms of people-growth, head hunting is fine. We seem to havea tagline of ‘All the benefits of a larger MUCK but the community of a smaller one’, right?”

Featherwing says, “Growth? If things continue to expand and more people join the server and place themselves within the community, I think that a space aside from Newcomer’s to meet and greet would do nicely.”

JasonRDT arfs, “We need to strike a balance between ‘not having enough people for ideas, RP or otherwise’ and ‘too many people that form loose groups throughout the ‘Dizzy’.”

fluffy says, “I think all newcomers should be required to be subject to genetic and/or teleporter-based splicing in the various and sundry labs in the MSLCaTL.”

Nigel says, “We’ve only had two mayors so far, so a lot of things are informal, including term limits. How do you feel the maximum length of a mayor’s term should be determined?”

Azure yips, “I think a single term should be one year and one year only. And the maximum number of terms should be whenever folks want a new mayor or the mayor gets tired of the job.”

fluffy says, “The term should be limited by how long it takes for the voters to stop voting them into office.”

BunnyHugger says, “I think it should be determined by a public vote, but not just one vote to bind everyone forever (given that this would be akin to a generation making a choice for all future generations), but one that is repeated at some regular interval, perhaps every four years or similar.”

BunnyHugger says, “I’m sorry, can we answer how long/term limits/etc. we think it should be, or is this just supposed to be ‘how to decide’? Because I have an answer for that, but wasn’t sure if you were waiting on that question.”

Ali says, “Strictly speaking, that should be a constitutuional issue and not a mayoral one. As I understand it, the outgoing administration is preparing a referendum on that very subject, rendering it moot for us on the stage.”

Enkeli smiles, “I’m in favor of a year long term limit. A mayor may re-run at that time if he or she wants, but I think a year in office is plenty of time. Our goal should be to let as many people who want to try have a chance, because you never know what kind of things someone even unexpected may be able to bring ot the table.”

BunnyHugger says, “I think it should be decided by the public, but I have an opinion on what it should be.”

Nigel says, “I think either form of answer–or both–is fine, Professor Hugger.”

Ali says, “I personally like the two-year limit, or perhaps one and a half, but I wouldn’t presume to try to impose my will on it.”

JasonRDT arfs, “I agree, 2 years is sufficient time, but someone can raise objection and we can have an official forum if one thinks that’s too long… Otherwise, a mayor can be re-elected over and over again, if the people see fit.”

BunnyHugger says, “As noted in my public statement, which I think was influential on the outgoing administration in its surprise announcement of a referendum, I think the terms should be one year but that running for re-election should be permitted as often as one wishes.”

BunnyHugger says, “Two years is too long, I think. It makes the elections too high-stakes, for one thing. If everyone got to try again in a year, it wouldn’t be as disappointing for those losing, and I think that would also facilitate shorter election periods, as I think this one is too long also.”

BunnyHugger says, “The public tires of it after three weeks or more.”

Ali says, “Aren’t you on the committee working to answer that very question, Nigel?”

Nigel’s lips quirk. “I do have a follow-up, Miss Alisande.”

Featherwing says, “I have to agree, one year does seem perfect in terms of, well, term length.”

BunnyHugger nods.

fluffy says, “We should have daily elections! And if the mayor is ever voted out of office they should be BANNED! MWAHAHAHA!”

Ali says, “Welp, goodbye, fluffy.”

Nigel says, “As the prophesied follow-up, easy question: If the election board designed a public referendum to codify term limits and the election process with player input, would you participate in its design and support the outcome?”

fluffy says, “That would require that I be elected to begin with.”

Ali says, “Yes and yes.”

BunnyHugger says, “Yes.”

JasonRDT arfs, “Of course, Nigel! Again, a mayor should be the representative of the people!”

Featherwing says, “Of course on both accounts.”

Ali says, “And to address the concerns… nothing is entirely set in stone. I don’t think we would need an official expiration on the term limits, there will be grumblings enough to make it obvious when to readdress the issue.”

BunnyHugger says, “I think this is very important and was planning to spearhead it if it wasn’t done by the outgoing administration. I think it should have been done long ago. Actually, in Beltrami’s end of term interview in the News, she herself expressed regret over two years and support for one year.”

Azure yips, “Probably. Though roleplaying political corruption, hiring the mafia, and finally getting impeached for conspiring to destroy the democracy might be fun.”

Nigel says, “Let me ask a slightly better one: What’s *one* question such a referendum would have to address?”

BunnyHugger says, “Do you mean ‘besides the obvious ones just mentioned’?”

Ali headtilts. “Did you just ask us what question needs to be on a referendum to determine the length of a mayor’s term?”

Azure yips, “How to hold and coordinate the next elections.”

Nigel says, “You may answer with a point either because you consider it important to address or especially subtle to realize, Professor.”

JasonRDT arfs, “I agree with my small, blue uncle.”

Enkeli nods, “Of course, whatever the outcome is I fully support it. Ultimately, the mayor is here to serve the people, not the other way around. Whatever the people chose, that’s how it rolls. Well, the biggest question is what is the term length. At the minimum, it should ask that. The secondary questions are, how many terms may a mayor run, and are we going to build in a recall process. The later, I think, is kind of absurd for a “fun” office but I think I’ve heard mention of it before.”

Azure yips, “Traditionally it’s been the mayor him or herself scheduling them and so forth, organizing them if not re-running. I don’t think this is necessarily bad, since the mayor’s duties include setting times and organizing stuff and people around here are pretty honourable, and if it’s known up-front that the next election is in a year, then a nod is as good as a wink.”

Ali says, “Literal term length. Rate of re-running. Who runs elections.”

BunnyHugger says, “I think a subtle but possibly important point that might be overlooked is the role of the Deputy Mayor. Last time, there was some confusion over whether the runner up automatically became Deputy, and there wasn’t any rule for that. Jaxen chose someone other than the runner up, which I don’t have a problem with and probably would have done myself in some circumstances. But in case of hard feelings or dispute in future, the statement that the Deputy is chosen entirely at the Mayor’s discretion might want to be put in. Also, perhaps, whether the Deputy gets to become Mayor should the Mayor suddenly disappear for five months or something like that.”

Ali shrugs. “Honestly, Nigel, I’m against over-administrating the electoral process, because then all the fun leeches out, and there’ll be nothing left of the whole process but BunnyHugger and I taking it all too seriously and yelling at each other in an empty debate auditorium.”

Azure yips, “However, in a well-run and orderly system, perhaps the mayor’s first duty should be to appoint someone who will sit quietly in the shadows for one year, then come up and kindly place a hand on his shoulder, saying ‘Come, friend, it’s time to go.’ before leading him from office and out of the spotlight of the world, preparing a new person to take his place..”

JasonRDT arfs, “Ooh! Ooh! In the vein of good-natured corrupt ogliarchy, would you make me the Secretary of Assassination?”

fluffy says, “I am all for increasing the amount of process until we have to perform status reports to the MUCK as a whole every 15 minutes. It’ll be just like work!”

Featherwing honestly has to agree with the majority of statements said, with the exception of “Children learning”.

Nigel says, “Next question: Are there particular scandals we should look forward to from your administration?”

JasonRDT arfs, “Do I /have/ to answer this one, Nigel?”

fluffy says, “If elected I will promise to at least attempt some sort of a sex scandal while I am in office. This will perhaps be the most difficult challenge I will ever attempt to surmount.”

Nigel says, “Not if you think it’s better to be surprised, Mister Drifter-Trenner.”

Enkeli giggles at Nigel, “Any particualr scandals? Probably selling booze to minors. Or maybe robots gone amok, those are both pretty likely,” she muses.

Ali says, “Certainly. I’m sure someone will get in a big fight with me at one point. I may even manage to become your first exiled ruler. That would be interesting. I even have a prison outfit from two years ago.”

Azure yips, “Well, as I have already promised, you can look forward to corruption. And as I have just promised to appoint my adopted nephew to a position, nepotism. I will appoint an exploratory committee to examine the possibility of voter fraud, and I hope to be able to establish good, working ties with organized crime and get involved with racketeering.”

BunnyHugger says, “In my Earth life I am, or was, or… I’m not sure about the time line. Let me start over. My Earthian self is a teacher of ethics to squirrels. I will strive to avoid any scandal in my administration. I suspect my greatest problem will be that the SED will try to corrupt me because it delights them so to take down one of their visible and vocal opponents.”

BunnyHugger puffs up with evident pride.

BunnyHugger says, “On an OOC note, having the SED attempt to corrupt me or, better, my adviser Chitter, would probably be a funny recurring gag.”

The SED Blimp has arrived.

The-SED-Blimp LED-boards, “Join the SED!”

BunnyHugger shakes her fluffy fist at the blimp. “Stop that, blimp!!!”

JasonRDT arfs, “I suppose the biggest scandal will involve the blimp here.”

Featherwing says, “I personally don’t think so, but if some do arise, I’m happy to work towards an amicable solution… Heh, I’d have to agree there Jason.”

Nigel says, “Second to last question before I open the floor to candidate statements and questions from the audience: How should the mayor use the newspaper?”

Enkeli giggles, “Well.”

Ali says, “I’m not sure, Nigel. Aren’t we all housebroken already? I know I am.”

JasonRDT arfs, “I suppose I could do fireside chat type things. Quell the nerves of the people.”

Ali faces the audience. “A vote for Ali is a vote for NOT peeing on things!”

Azure yips, “First and foremost, the mayor should use the newspaper to write up reports of things that happen. One of the best things the newspaper gives us is letting people know the continuity and recording what’s happened in our world.”

Nigel says, “‘…Unlike those other candidates,’ Miss Alisande?”

BunnyHugger says, “I would like to see the mayor having a regular column in the newspaper giving a sort of ‘state of the MUCK’ update. In it, she could address concerns, discuss things that she thinks are important, and so on.”

Enkeli grins playfully, “No, seriously. It should be used to announce things of interest and to post roleplay logs so that people can see waht goes on here. I think we need to consider the newspaper as something that we show more externally to people. A lot of the active folk here know what’s going on, and it’s fun to have a newspaper to report with, but we need to be advertising this outwards as a chronicle of the fun things you’re missing if you’re not here on the MUCK.”

fluffy says, “And a vote for me is a vote for peeing wherever you damn well please!”

Ali says, “I would never take it upon myself to tell a truth like that, Nigel.”

Nigel says, “fluffy is apparently stealing Mister Gilead’s position….”

fluffy says, “Good thing he isn’t running for mayor. Or the toilet.”

fluffy says, “Because I need the toilet.”

Ali says, “Actually, he is, fluffy. Check the board.”

fluffy says, “See? Thanks to my crushing apathy I was not even aware of that.”

Azure yips, “Which is just a part of making events more interesting and accessible to the population. Also, I quite like using the newspaper as a roleplay tool. Sending in press releases, op-eds, or what have you. (Truth be told, if we could manage it, I’d love to see a couple folks go to work for the newspaper in character and get involved with playing daring investigative journalism.)”

BunnyHugger says, “I think posting reports on events is something everyone should do, not just the Mayor. I do it when I can, and try to ask others to do it when I can’t.”

Featherwing says, “The mayor should use the newspaper not for political advocacy, but if done in the proper section, a forum of sorts, where people can write comments for outside communication with the mayor, and other various subjects not pertaining to politics.”

BunnyHugger says, “Azure, speaking now as the Content Editor, that is one of my plans for the newspaper regardless of Mayoral matters.”

Ali says, “Silliness aside, I favor creating a press position in the mayoral administration.”

BunnyHugger says, “I have this idea for combining the IC/OOC function of the newspaper to encourage people to be more active with the paper in exchange for having IC ‘press passes’ and titles.”

BunnyHugger smiles.

BunnyHugger says, “But that’s not part of my mayoral campaign.”

Nigel says, “Last official question for this debate, and uh, I’ll present it in the format it was presented to me….” Nigel holds up a note card removed from his notes and holds it up: HOW CAN ROLE OF MAYOR GROW AND DEVELOP

Ali says, “That would seem to be exactly what all the previous questions were about. We’ve all vowed to become active and make certain that being the mayor means something at least socially important.”

Ali says, “But there is only one absolutely certain way to make the mayor grow: Vote for the biggest fox in the world!”

fluffy says, “In Beltrami’s case, she could have grown by being attached to a sufficiently-powerful compressor.”

fluffy says, “Heck, most mayors could simply be balloonified if they want quick growth.”

BunnyHugger says, “Oh, I love this question because I have an idea for it that I’m excited about. That is, in addition to my previous mention that the Mayor could be involved with RP, I think that the Mayor should have a more robust role than he or she has had in the past. I would like to make the Mayor something like the ‘people’s administrator.’ We don’t get to elect the wizards, so we don’t really have an elected representative for OOC purposes. However, I think what the Mayor could do is serve as a sort of ombudsman to mediate between the wizards and the players. Someone whose voice carries a lot of weight as a, well, ‘non-voting’ representative of the administration. [cont’d]”

JasonRDT arfs, “We can subject them to Official SED Tests!”

BunnyHugger says, “The Mayor could fulfill this function by, for instance, taking public opinion polls of things that seem to be on people’s minds, and presenting these results; and offering herself as an ear to anonymous player concerns, so she could bring them to the wizards in this way. I would propose to the wizards that the mayor have a monthly audience with them to report on her sense of how things are going with the populace and anything that needs to be addressed.”

Azure yips, “I believe that the best way to increase the spatial extent of the mayor is to transmute the mayor into pure electromagnetic energy and transmit it into the cosmos as we rush through the void at superluminal velocities. And if this is what the populace wishes, I will quite happily consent to performing my duties over the span of hundreds of light-years while driving radio-astronomers mad.”

BunnyHugger says, “This is actually my favorite ‘new’ idea for the post.”

BunnyHugger says, “I think a lot more could be done with the Mayor’s office than has been done in the past. Everyone says ‘this is a ridiculous election because the Mayor has no power.’ Perhaps the Mayor just needs to be more assertive.”

Ali says, “Monthly meetings?”

Ali rubs her chin. “I’d like to reiterate my position of being against over-adminstrating things.”

BunnyHugger says, “Informal ones, but just to kind of chat and relay the vox populi.”

BunnyHugger says, “Or less often, the frequency isn’t important.”

Ali says, “Reasonable, but now I have to ask.”

Enkeli giggles and nodnods, “I think it’s important to remember that being mayor is for /FUN/. It’s important to not take it too far, and important to not bother people or overthink or overcommitty things. Ultimately, you’re here to fascilitate people’s good time and to contribute positively while doing it.”

Ali says, “BunnyHugger, you are the fiancee of the most powerful and also most aloof wizard. How would having *you* as the voice of the non-wizards actually make a useful difference?”

Ali says, “As in, you’re already ‘Wizard Lite’.”

BunnyHugger says, “I consider my personal relationship with one specific person who is a wizard to be irrelevant to this. Austin keeps his wizardly business separate from me to almost an extreme degree.”

Featherwing says, “Nice question Miss Bel, with careful planning, the role of mayor can grow by more communication, as that’s what the mayor should do, communicate with the populace…”

Claude says, “It’s not like Jaxen wasn’t present…”

Ali raises a highly skeptical eyebrow at the rabbit, then after a moment shrugs.

BunnyHugger says, “I am a citizen here and I wish to be treated as a citizen and I ask everyone to do so.”

BunnyHugger says, “As Austin does.”

Nigel nods and stamps out his cigarette. “I would like to re-iterate: Civil requests for clarification are fine. But word it civilly, let the candidate answer, and don’t drag it out. You’ve asked on a point, she’s answered. Keep it positive, please.”

Enkeli says, “As for growing the role of mayor, really, what it means to be mayor sort of needs to be sketched out more. Term limits, what’s expected, what’s not expected, that sort of thing…. I don’t think anyone really knows what to do with the position as it is.”

Austin says, “If I may say something from a wizardly perspective?”

Nigel says, “If you like, Austin. We’ll then move on to candidate statements.”

Claude perks an ear at Austin.

BunnyHugger jokes, “They won’t even give me M2.” But starts looking through her notes.

Austin says, “All right. I admit I don’t understand what the trouble is to having a mayor who’s closely involved with one of the wizards. The mayoral position is not intended to be one adversarial with the wizards. And if there is some impropriety, we’ve already accepted it as a community: the first mayor was the daughter of *two* wizards, after all. … ”

Jaxen nods to Austin.

Austin says, “We the wizards intend to be respectful of whoever is mayor, and aren’t going to deliberately freeze out or boost anyone based on our personal relationships. I did feel more distant from Jaxen than from Beltrami, but that was entirely at his preference, and I’m not aware that there was anything he hoped to accomplish that felt he could not.”

Austin says, “Thank you.”

Nigel says, “Thank you. Now is the time for Mayoral Statements. This is a time where each candidate can make a brief statement, saying anything they want the electorate to know. Unlike previous questions, this is not really a forum for responses. Please let your opponents make their statements and make your own. With that said, candidates are free to make their final statements.”

Azure yips, “My fellow Spindizzians, I set out on this campaign promising viciousness, slander, hyperbole beyond belief, allegations of misconduct, and unleashing the hounds of infamy to sully the family trees of my opponents. Instead I have failed so far, having been truthful and kind in this forum. I beg of you, please forgive me for my failure of creativity and resolve, and beg only that I have been distracted by gallavanting about the past making a mess of things, then getting recruited to clean up after someone else making a bigger mass of things. I hope you will not hold this failure against me, and will give me the chance to prove that I am the politician I believe myself to be.”

Azure bows and sits down on the podium.

fluffy clears its throat and ahems, “Don’t vote for me.” It then sits down in the audience.

Featherwing says, “In conclusion, I mainly set out on this campaign for fun, but this debate brought about several great points, and the one I’m gonna focus on if elected is better communication during events. Committees will be formed during major events since there seems (with obvious exceptions) to not be a lot of communication between the event coordinator and the general population, that requires it. I’m not one for long winded speeches, so this will have to do nicely.”

Enkeli smiles and bows her head, “Firstly, I want to thank everyone for the opportunity to run for mayor. The citizens, the wizards. Friends and opponents alike. I think, in truth, we’ve got a good set of candidates this year and everyone’s pretty good. I hope you’ll pick me, because I have a lot to offer, and I feel like I can work with everyone in a calm, happy way. I hope to build consensus and work positively, because we’re all in this together. I want to work together, especially with storytellers, to bring things to do to the MUCK. I’m willing to commit resources to helping this place grow, in any way that I can. Thank you all for attending and listening this evening, and remember; you should expectelot from your mayor!”

JasonRDT arfs, “Dear SpinDizzians, I am your candidate Jason Redford Drifter-Trenner. You may know me as ‘That SED candidate’, and in truth, I cannot deny that I am running under the SED banner. But tell me, what is so wrong with that? What is so terrible about me being one of the latest in a line of researchers and soldiers for the Society of Evil Doers? Sure, we may not have the most stellar name, but have we done true harm to the ‘Dizzy? I will promise that as a mayorial candidate, I would not shirk my responsibilites beyond the usual ones under Morticon. Yes, I am SED, but please vote for me on my qualifications as mayor, not as the poster boy for the biggest organization on SpinDizzy. Thank you.”

BunnyHugger says, “I have been fortunate that most of the points I wanted to discuss have already been brought out in the course of the debate. I hope I have demonstrated to you that I have the enthusiasm and experience to be Mayor and that I have ideas about how to effectively use and grow the position. If you have enjoyed the World’s Fair, or the Olympics, or are looking forward to the upcoming Winter Carnival, I ask you to think of that when you’re in the voting booth. …”

BunnyHugger says, “I am not the only candidate to have run public events, and I have enjoyed ones run by Azure and Enkeli in particular, but I think I have run some very high-profile and successful ones that have had many participants. I’m not going to stop if not elected; after all it wouldn’t speak well of me to say “vote for me or I’ll stop doing things for the community!” But you can count on me to continue at my current level at least, whereas others who have not run many events in the past might not start now, regardless of the best intentions. …”

BunnyHugger says, “In conclusion, I would be very moved and wonderfully happy to be elected, as the culmination of all that I have already done here on SpinDizzy. I thank you for your support.”

Chitter applauds conspicuously.

Ali says, “Everyone: I would dearly like to be Mayor, and while I am against over-regulation, I am indeed taking the tasks ahead quite seriously. I promise repairs to what little is broken, promotion of what isn’t, and above all I promise BALANCE. Nobody can honestly guarantee that they would be the very best mayor; instead, I promise to be the best mayor I can possibly be, and the best me I can be in office. Thank you.”

Ali, also against unnecessary long-windedness.

Nigel puts out his last cigarette, “Thank you for coming to my humble debate. I, uh, hope it was acceptable. If there are critiques or feedback you’d like to provide please send a missive to me or the entire electoral board–Miss Beltrami, Mister Neurocyon, and myself. Also, the electorate should feel free to submit questions to us for our next debate. That debate is planned to be an evening debate. Candidates should expect to receive a mail concerning their availability after we discuss it. Thank you again.”


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