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Old May 27 2014, 09:16 PM   #23
Sci
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Re: What should be the minimal requirements for Federation members?

Canonically, the criteria are vague. We know that Federation Members have to have a unified planetary government ("Attached") and must ban caste-based discrimination ("Accession"). Given the various references to a society's "maturity," I suspect it is safe to infer that Federation Member candidates must have achieved the kinds of social progress outlined as Earth's accomplishments after First Contact in ST:FC: Abolition of war and poverty, improved health care, etc.

Personally, if I'm writing the Articles of the Federation, my criteria would be:

- Presence of a unified government encompassing at least one planetary surface if a planet-based society
- Presence of a unified government encompassing the culture's entire territory if the society is not primarily planet-based (a society of astroid colonies, for instance)
- Minimum and maximum population levels, to ensure relative equality of representation on the Federation Council
- Government must be a constitutional liberal democracy (meaning, it must function according to law, it must guarantee certain inalienable rights, and it must obtain a democratic mandate which regularly expires and must be renewed)
- Universal adult suffrage
- Maintenance of a welfare state ensuring minimum wealth for all citizens and residents
- Maximum limit to the amount of wealth any citizen or resident may accumulate to prevent the evolution of an oligarchy
- Presence of either an advanced social democratic economy (capitalism with strong socialist programs to curb excess inequality) or a democratic market socialist economy (socialism with capitalist traits to curb excesses), both designed to minimize economic oppression
- Adoption of a strong program of ecological sustainability in the functioning of the economy and of technology, or serious attempts thereof
- Absence of social structures built around or perpetuating privilege, racism, bigotry, sexism, heterosexism, classism, religious oppression, or other forms of oppression
- Renunciation of militarism, jingoism, or other forms of war-mongering
- History of social policies of serious reparations and restitution if such oppressions have existed in the past
- Overall a relatively egalitarian social order
- Presence of a strong mechanism to enforce and protect civil rights and liberties
- Presence of a vibrant civil society
- Absence of any form of slavery or forced labor
- Presumption of innocence in criminal cases
- Absence of capital punishment
- Willingness to abide by the Guarantees of the Federation Constitution

Of course, there's the question of just what the Guarantees of the Federation Constitution actually consist of.
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