Skip to main content

in reply to Grrrr, Darth Moose Shark

@grrrr_shark this!
But I’m also in favour of targeted voting, if it’s something that will affect the economy long term (eg brexit) old folks who won’t live to see the ramifications shouldn’t vote.
in reply to Grrrr, Darth Moose Shark

@eelie_ I'm not sure how I feel about it, but I do see the point that e.g. my mom ("Global warming? Well, thank God I'll be dead for it.* <buys massive SUV>) probably shouldn't be making decisions about the climate, etc.
in reply to Ricki Is Not A Wizard Tarr

Yes, everyone has a responsibility to think about their society at least once every few years.
in reply to JillL

@jillL You can lead a voter to a ballot, but you can't make them think.
in reply to Kyle Hasselbacher

@kyleha @jillL LOL But seriously my hubs has always really got in a twist about exactly who to vote for, so I found a website that does a questionnaire about your basic beliefs and stands and it shows you which politicians you most align with, it was really helpful for him, and it was completely unbiased.
in reply to Ricki Is Not A Wizard Tarr

@kyleha @jillL l think most people in the US would be surprised how purple they really are. Extreme left and extreme right candidates have abandoned a wide swath of reasonable in the center. Big special interest money has perverted the system. Repealing Citizens United would be a logical first step.
in reply to RacerX

@RacerX @kyleha @jillL

Money out is the only way, outside actual revolution, that will cause any change.

Some people think that the older you get the more conservative you become. Though I can only speak for myself, the older I get the more left and radicalized I become. And I didn't think that was really possible

This entry was edited (6 months ago)
in reply to Mary625 Ceasefire Now ☮️

@Mary625 @RacerX @kyleha @jillL Do you feel like your life experiences have crystalized and focused what you believed when you were younger? Basically, same beliefs, just better understood,
in reply to Ricki Is Not A Wizard Tarr

@Mary625 Ricki, if you're comfortable with it please do. Maybe it could be framed broader? idk, maybe something like, "Do you feel like your life experiences have crystalized and focused what you believed when you were younger? Basically, same beliefs, just better understood. Or have you radically changed as a person over time?"

Or the original. tysm for asking. And if posted does not need attribution to me.

in reply to Mary625 Ceasefire Now ☮️

@Mary625 The link takes us to beige.party instance. I don't think we can interact with it there without having a presence on that instance. I think we may have to wait for Ricki's post to come through our feed?
in reply to Veirling | #MMIWG #LandBack

@veirling @Mary625 @RacerX @kyleha @jillL
In some ways, yes. In some ways I got new information. I think trickle-down, as originally posed, was a reasonable hypothesis that empirically failed miserably. That's new info.

I was never taught about the American caste system or redlining or any of the ways that systemic racism works. So that was new info to me.

On the other hand, I've always believed that our humanity has nothing to do with which side of a political border you were born in. So some things haven't changed.

in reply to Mary625 Ceasefire Now ☮️

@Mary625 @kyleha @jillL the saying used to be: everyone is born a Democrat, until they start making some real money. As I get older, I lean further left in my thinking. 🤔
in reply to Mary625 Ceasefire Now ☮️

@Mary625 @RacerX @kyleha @jillL I turned 18 in September 1980 so I got to vote for President just a few weeks later. I was vehemently anti-party then so I voted for John Anderson instead of Carter. I'm still vehemently anti-party but I quickly came to terms with the constraints of our system and to look at the character of the candidate. All I knew of Anderson was that he looked like Dennis the Menace's Dad, not a good barometer for the job.
in reply to Steve Buzzard

@sbuzzard @RacerX @kyleha @jillL

😂😂. He did look like Dennis' Dad

We're almost the same age. I turned 17 in the summer of 1980. I campaigned for Jimmy Carter and, though I couldn't have voted for him, in my memory I did. Weird

I'm anti party and I get the restraints. I also get that the same money is paying for all votes regardless of party. Same money paying for the bombs

in reply to Mary625 Ceasefire Now ☮️

@Mary625 @RacerX @kyleha @jillL I was a mess as a teen. I protested the requirement to register for Selective Service, seeing it as a prelude to the draft. To really stick it to the man I then enlisted in the Navy, lol. My old houseboat, the Eisenhower carrier, is now back where I spent so much time on it in the early 80s, in the eastern mediterranean, about to be doing the same thing we did there then I imagine. Much of my politics was solidified back then in my front row seat.

reshared this

in reply to Steve Buzzard

@sbuzzard

There was a period of time that registration for Selective Service was suspended. That was when I would have registered. Once it restarted, I was past the age to register. One bit of good luck for which I often feel guilty.

Yes, everyone thought that I was a man back then.

@Mary625 @RacerX @RickiTarr @kyleha @jillL

in reply to Ricki Is Not A Wizard Tarr

@kyleha @jillL We have https://votecompass.com/ for Canadian elections, which shows the political parties that you align with most closely on two axes of social and economic policy and beliefs. My students find it helpful to inform their future votes.
in reply to Ricki Is Not A Wizard Tarr

Minor bias towards 'yes', although tempered somewhat since I learned about 'donkey voting'. And people.
in reply to Ricki Is Not A Wizard Tarr

There have been studies done about that and what I remember is that making voting mandatory leads to corruption because people will literally pay people to vote the way they want them to, because you HAVE to vote.

What works better is making election day a paid holiday where nobody works but poll workers.

*The surest way to get an answer to a question you don’t know the answer to: Confidently post the wrong answer. Someone will inevitably reply to correct you with the actual correct answer.

This entry was edited (6 months ago)
in reply to Lord Hurkle-Durkle

@GuyDudeman There is no evidence of such corruption in Australia. Elections are held on Saturdays, but early, absentee & postal voting are possible. A party that fails to secure at least 51% of the vote but has won more support than any other party, must negotiate an arrangement with a smaller party &/or independents to win government, which reduces the possibility of a party with extreme views holding power. I do think that voting in referendums should possibly be optional. This might reduce the incidence of lazy/ignorant people preventing much needed reforms of our constitution.
in reply to Ricki Is Not A Wizard Tarr

@lisamelton absolutely yes. With voter pamphlets mailed to everyone (like in Oregon) and mail in ballots for everyone (like in Oregon). It works well there.
in reply to Ricki Is Not A Wizard Tarr

@Mary625 @Codhisattva @lisamelton I’m a permanent absentee voter in California (which is something you can do). It comes to you a few weeks ahead of time and you can fill it out and send it back at your leisure. It’s how all voting should be, in my opinion.
in reply to Ricki Is Not A Wizard Tarr

@GuyDudeman @Mary625 @Codhisattva @lisamelton I have only ever voted in Oregon Mail ballot only option. No election workers to harrass, no drop boxes to move away from where they are needed, no lines, Easy Peasy. It should be mandatory at the federal level no more voter intimidation bs.
in reply to Ricki Is Not A Wizard Tarr

Voting, like anything should be a choice. After all, voting for its own sake isn't a real vote.
in reply to gocu54

@gocu54 Should clarify, Australian-style compulsory voting is actually a requirement to attend a polling place and have your presence recorded. What you do next is a complete choice: and many do choose to return a blank or defaced ballot.

Requiring people to wander in to their local primary school or church hall a few times a decade is far less burdensome than many other things we require citizens to do.

in reply to Damien Hurrell

@damienhurrell Oh, okay. I understand now and yeah, that's something I would be willing to do. It's not really something that's so bad. How long does your leader's term last?
in reply to gocu54

@gocu54 Our leaders are part of, and accountable to, our parliaments. The "usual" way that leaders lose their jobs is that their party loses their majority at an election: those are held every three years for the Federal Parliament and every four years in most of the States. There are no term limits.

But it's become increasingly common in recent decades for government parties to vote out their leaders without an election: four of the last six Prime Ministers lost their jobs that way

in reply to Damien Hurrell

@damienhurrell Oh wow. That's very different from what i'm use to. 4 year terms with 2 terms per president if voted in 2 times.
in reply to gocu54

@gocu54 I'm really quite puzzled by term limits. Why should a talented, popular, successful President/Governor be barred from standing and holding office for as long as they have the support of the people?
in reply to Damien Hurrell

@damienhurrell The longest serving president of the United states was Franklin Roosevelt. He lasted 4 terms until his death in 1945. He was the last president to have more than 2 terms in office because after that, limits were made into law. I still don't know why.
in reply to gocu54

@gocu54 as I understand it, the two presidential terms thing was a convention that arose because George Washington thought two terms were enough for anyone, and when FDR broke the convention, it was codified. But that doesn't answer why.

Perhaps it comes back to the voluntary voting question: if a charismatic or unscrupulous leader can hold the votes of one portion of the electorate and suppress the others, then you need a mechanism to prevent them becoming a dictator for life.

in reply to Damien Hurrell

@damienhurrell I like what the UK does, if they don't like a person, just make a vote of no confidence and they're gone.
in reply to Ricki Is Not A Wizard Tarr

The process needs to be improved greatly, I think making it mandatory is one of those improvements.
in reply to Alexander Hay

@alexanderhay vote shaming never helps your cause. Dems do this crap every election never giving voters something to vote for rather its always a vote against something. Negative political action on real day to day issues disenfranchises people leading more and more to not vote. Voting harder has gotten us nothing.
in reply to Shadow Heart

@Sh4d0w_H34rt @alexanderhay
As confused as confused gets or vote supression. There sure are a lot of accounts telling you not to vote, when they cant get away with 'dont vote democrat' or laughed into the thirteenth century for trying to suggest voting for the billionaire wrecker owned republican party.

Walk, crawl, over broken glass to vote, and vote dem. Get every friend to vote, every acquaintance, every seventeen year old who will be 18 on voting day

Dont let'em take your vote

in reply to Alexander Hay

@alexanderhay you would think it would make politicians work toward earning their votes. Sadly that would require politicians to have a conscious and not being corrupt POS yet they are. Not voting then is just an indictment on how horrible the system is and the realization we have to create solutions for a failing government.
in reply to Alexander Hay

@alexanderhay so gaslight and tick off because you can't see validity in my argument? Got it moving on.
in reply to Alexander Hay

@alexanderhay @Sh4d0w_H34rt Abstention is allowed by our representatives and senators. Why should citizens be compelled to vote when our representatives are free not to?

Because recusing yourself on a personal matter you shouldn't be deciding on your peer's behalf, or not involving yourself on a decision you can't take a pro or con stance on, is also a freedom that should be afforded to a citizenry. Politico-math of "this just reduces the count needed to win, so you may as well have voted yes" isn't the point.

in reply to Cefr

@Cefr @alexanderhay @Sh4d0w_H34rt To be fair, I do think representatives should be voting on every issue, it's literally their job they get paid for.
in reply to Ricki Is Not A Wizard Tarr

@alexanderhay @Sh4d0w_H34rt I also think politicians shouldn't accept money from special interests who seek to influence their decisions, that the congressional budget should be their only compensation for their work. (Fly on commercial flights if you are really for the people, not on a G6.)

But I can say that Abstention should be rare and carefully reasoned out to a constituency, and not a normal vote outcome. (No explanation? Good luck with your next campaign.)

in reply to Alexander Portnoy 🌊 🏳️‍🌈🏳️‍⚧️

@5klp471
Plus: do like Australia. How do they achieve such high voter participation rates? Simple. It’s not mandatory to vote, but if you choose not to participate in being a citizen, you get hit with an extra $75 on your taxes at the end of the year.
Unknown parent

in reply to Ricki Is Not A Wizard Tarr

Yes! But Election Day should be a holiday so everyone can. Why it isn’t is beyond my optimistic comprehension.
in reply to Ricki Is Not A Wizard Tarr

No, unless we (US) also mandate an informed electorate, and enforce accessibility. (Lifted the latter idea from @grrrr_shark)

(Looking at the recent vote in Australia, an uninformed mandatory vote can do awful things.)

in reply to George Station

@harmonygritz And for that, you need to start having civics education again, which we all know that most of the US is definitely not interested in having.
in reply to Ricki Is Not A Wizard Tarr

If I recall voting is mandatory if Australia? In the US Republicans want to end democracy thus voting.
in reply to Piousunyn

@Piousunyn I have a huge amount of sympathy (if that's the right word) with making voting mandatory - I'm in the UK. "If you didn't vote, you have zero right to complain about the outcome".
in reply to bytebro

@bytebro @Piousunyn they could get everybody to vote by just pairing the election with a lottery where you have to vote to get a ticket and they announce the winning number after the results are finalized. They spend millions pretending to try to get people to vote. Put half that in the jackpot and nearly everyone would vote.
in reply to bytebro

@bytebro @Piousunyn I would add to that : if you voted for the party that got in you lose the right to complain.... other than that, you should vote even if it is to show dissatisfaction by spoiling your vote.
in reply to Ricki Is Not A Wizard Tarr

Much as the wheat side of me would like it, the sweet side says no. It still has to be a choice.

But if you don't, you can shut your entire face forever. Until you do vote.

That's as nice as I can be.

in reply to Ricki Is Not A Wizard Tarr

No. There should be a voting DMV. Eight sided red sigh that says stop. Stop Sign. There is a pizzeria in suburban Washington DC serving adenochrome. Yes. Sorry that is incorrect.
in reply to Ricki Is Not A Wizard Tarr

If campagning wasn’t allowed anymore and each candidate gave understandable answers to questions of important matters, then yes.

Some years ago a newspaper went around some political campaigns asking people why they would vote for whoever they’d vote for. One old lady’s reply was that because that candidate was handing out such delicious candy. It’s so worrying what certain people base their votes on.

in reply to Ricki Is Not A Wizard Tarr

It's mandatory here in Belgium (although the fines for not voting are rarely applied AFAIK). I think it's a good thing.

Voting is not just a right, it's a responsibility. You have the choice to vote blank, obviously, so you can still voice your lack of adhesion for any of the choices.

This entry was edited (6 months ago)
in reply to Ricki Is Not A Wizard Tarr

I do think it should be mandatory, with these tweaks:

Every office will have an option known as No Acceptable Candidate. If you choose this, you're indicating that none of the candidates for this office are acceptable to you. If this choice wins a plurality of the votes (i.e. more than any other selection), no candidate wins and a special election is called for the office, where NONE of the candidates who stood for the office in the previous election are eligible.

in reply to Ricki Is Not A Wizard Tarr

Mandatory implies consequences for failure to do so. I think it could really mess things up if someone was forced to vote and just selected anything. Perhaps some encouragement like a tax credit or a holiday. Something that would reward those who are less likely to be able to afford time off or who lack benefits such as holiday pay. But again if people are doing it just to get it done we could have a situation that things get passed that no one wanted such as random person/bill.
in reply to Adventurer

But, if we made it mandatory but with an option such as "I waive my vote" rather than just picking anything......maybe. ..but what about failing to do so? Incentive. Everyone who votes gets a $5 gift card to something they choose. Money that goes directly into the economy. And make it digital for most people such as a credit on a site they have an app for: McDonald's, Starbucks, Amazon, Netflix whatever so it doesn't go in the drawer and never used.
This entry was edited (6 months ago)
in reply to Ricki Is Not A Wizard Tarr

Firmly, no.

A core principle of a free society is the freedom not to have an opinion, or not to express one. I disagree that someone who didn't or doesn't vote shouldn't complain about the state of things, but I think it's appropriate to call them out for not voting.

Reading through the other responses, I agree with...
- Making voting easy to do; but not such that it corrupted.
- Making voting valuable (e.g. *never* first-past-the-post as is the case in many countries like the UK and the US)
- Automatic registration -- you should be required to do no more to vote than to turn up to vote.

I disagree with...
- Mandatory voting, as outlined above
- Taking inferences from someone's decision not to vote (inferring something from the number of people, or the demographs that don't vote is perfectly fine, but not the individual's, because that leads to abuse and may well be incorrect)

reshared this

in reply to Éibhear 🔭

Circling back around here for another comment: I 100% disagree with the notion that voting is a responsibility.

That's authoritarian-speak, and is the sort of thing you're taught in civics class by the teacher whose normal subject is religion but they need the extra hours.

When an oldie (like me -- I'm 52) tells you you have a responsibility to vote, what they actually want you to hear is "you have a responsibility to vote in the way I want you to vote". It's an approach that hearkens back to the time when men were expected to tell their wives how to vote.

I'm not having it! I tells ya!

reshared this

in reply to Éibhear 🔭

@eibhear Democracy, especially in a pure form that we haven't tried yet, relies on votes. They are integral to the process. If one is to work in support of democracy, the least they can do is offer the simple endorsement of voting. Without that, the process suffers, as we saw in 2016 when a hundred million eligible Americans stayed home, abandoning their chance to protect democracy. This is the responsibility of anyone who benefits from a free society.
in reply to Ω 🌍 Gus Posey

I disagree. An alternative view on those 100,000,000 is that they knew voting would not have any material effect, so why bother?

I don't live in the US, but what I read horrifies me: gerrymandering is pathetically easy, elections are operated by elected politicians, the person who gets elected is the one that is least unpopular (unlike, say, in my country, Ireland, where you can be elected only if you get a majority of the votes that have been cast), money is more important in campaigns than platforms.

Making it a crime not to vote in this context is fundamentally undemocratic.

Voting is a right, and people should use it. In my 34 years of having the right to vote, I have missed it only once and that was because I was out of the country. However, I am not so sure of my authority or superiority to tell anyone else that they should do something they don't see any value in. The most I can, and should do, is to try to convince them there's value in it.

in reply to Éibhear 🔭

@eibhear If they don't see any value in voting, they deserve all the consequences of their ignorance.
in reply to Ricki Is Not A Wizard Tarr

No, but everyone who doesn’t has to wear a scarlet letter on their clothes. An ‘A’ for Apathy.
in reply to Ricki Is Not A Wizard Tarr

I get where people are coming from on this when you see truly awful voter participation across the board.

Maybe the problem isn't assuming people are lazy and cynical, but they materially have never been given a reason to vote or are blocked from it?

There is evidence of this phenomenon in Canada:
https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/full/10.1177/0002764220941238

In the US, looks like this may be a thing as well. WARNING: This does not specifically include the effects of voter disenfranchisement, which is a BFD in the US.

in reply to Ricki Is Not A Wizard Tarr

No. You should have the maximum support in helping you get to vote (and face as few obstacles as possible) _if_ you choose to participate in the ballot. But it’s your choice. Of course, you will also have to accept any consequences that flow from choosing to not participate, or from voting in a particular way.

reshared this

in reply to Mark Maguire

@MarkMaguire Imo: you can always vote "none of the above" (and often should). But if you know there's a fine if you don't have a vote logged, it's harder to trick or intimidate you into not doing it.
in reply to Rev. Roger BW 😷

@RogerBW @MarkMaguire Even if I abstain from some, I always find something I can vote on, and otherwise you'll miss important local things that impact you more directly
in reply to Ricki Is Not A Wizard Tarr

@RogerBW Exactly. People should be able to find their own level of interest in any ballot based on what relevance they feel it has to them or their community.
Unknown parent

Ricki Is Not A Wizard Tarr
@autolycos LOL I definitely meant The Voice
Unknown parent

Quester 🌤️🌈✨
@engarneering Oh absolutely. I have voted a few times in my life, and realised that if I don’t go for any of the popular candidates, then my vote’s basically wasted.
in reply to Ricki Is Not A Wizard Tarr

Nope, I favor outreach to encourage voters. Scouts and student groups that attend civic meetings, learn basics of government, voting and volunteering by 18yo are great at this. Parents and kids pulling out the voting guides is good stuff.
in reply to Ricki Is Not A Wizard Tarr

Yes, with the caveat that implementation would have to include making it easy for everyone to vote.

It's not difficult to imagine a scenario where mandatory voting is combined with voter suppression and ends up just being one more excuse to punish disfavored groups.

But if it's fairly implemented? Yes. I tend to agree with the Churchill quote about democracy. There are downsides to making everybody vote, but the upsides outweigh them.

in reply to Ricki Is Not A Wizard Tarr

My best friend lives in Australia and says mandatory voting isn't a problem: https://worldpopulationreview.com/country-rankings/countries-with-mandatory-voting Like a couple of folks have mentioned, it can lead to a certain amount of corruption but you also get some of that with voluntary voting. I think I lean toward the No side with the caveat also mentioned by other posters that the voting process be made as accessible as possible for the most people. Mail in, absentee, lots of polling places with ramps, carrot rather than stick.
in reply to Ricki Is Not A Wizard Tarr

No, because in the US there's never been a law making anything mandatory for individuals that hasn't been weaponized against poor people, working people, powerless people, non-white people. Mandatory voting won't be the first time this doesn't happen, so it will happen.

The question about laws is never what they're supposed to accomplish or what people of good will intend by them, it's always what powerful people can make them accomplish after they're enacted, and that's rarely if ever good for non-plutocrats.

in reply to Quester 🌤️🌈✨

@quester @engarneering One of the most useful modifications any gov could make would be to add a box at the bottom of the ballot labelled "none of the above". This would immediately make clear the distinction between those who cannot be bothered to vote, and those who hate all the options available.
This entry was edited (6 months ago)
Unknown parent

in reply to Ricki Is Not A Wizard Tarr

my understanding if you make voting mandatory in shifts incentives and makes it harder for the local government to strip voting rights
Unknown parent

Ricki Is Not A Wizard Tarr
@autolycos I've never watched them, I'm just joshing
in reply to Ricki Is Not A Wizard Tarr

Yes - along with making it easy to vote and making g it part of a well thought out proportional representation voting system.
Unknown parent

Big George
@jennzycos in South Africa it is a national holiday. And we still have people that don't get out to vote. It's also usually on a Wednesday else people treat it as a long weekend and go away.... we're apathetic like that.
in reply to Ricki Is Not A Wizard Tarr

If you look at some of the places that do have it: Brazil, Belgium, Australia… are those places healthier democracies than similar countries which don’t? I’m not sure it makes a huge difference.

I do think other simple steps could make better democracies: abolishing first past the post everywhere, abolishing the US electoral college, tight controls on political spending and donor transparency.

This entry was edited (6 months ago)
in reply to Ricki Is Not A Wizard Tarr

Yes, but the problem is not with enforcing voting, but with manipulation of the electorate by media influencers. For example in the UK, the Scottish independence referendum, and the vote on European Union membership. In both cases there was a concerted media campaign to point out the "advantages" and the "terrible consequences" in the first case of voting against independence, in the second of leaving the union. In both cases the "advantages" and "consequences" were blatant lies.
This entry was edited (6 months ago)
in reply to Ricki Is Not A Wizard Tarr

The Gerrymandering potential is high when we know for sure how many votes there are to be accounted for in a certain area. We have a lot of things to fix about our electoral system which I'd prioritize over this, not the least of which is removing the electoral college so that voting actually matters again. Because right now, for a good number of folks, it doesn't. For example, I'm in Tennessee, and no matter who I vote for, our electoral votes are for the GOP.
in reply to Ricki Is Not A Wizard Tarr

As I get older, yes. When I was younger I didn't think it was worth it, and now as I'm older things are a mess. If it's mandatory young people can at least vote for something that's going to affect their future down the line.

Kids need more education with regards to this sort of stuff too.

It's easy to dismiss it when you're young but voting what happens now has ramifications 5, 10, 20 years down the line...

Plus if voting is mandatory it's hard to strip people of voting rights.

in reply to Ricki Is Not A Wizard Tarr

Why should voting be mandatory? Because all too often "democracy" is decided by a minority of the population. There should also be education of the general public so that voters have some vague conception of what the f*ck they are voting for!!!
in reply to Bob Jamieson

@bobjmsn Knowing what they are voting for? Requires understanding the issues. Canada limits 3rd party election spending “The majority concluded that the objective of the spending limits is electoral fairness. The law has an effect in creating "a level playing field for those who wish to engage in the electoral discourse, enabling voters to be better informed" https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Harper_v_Canada_(AG)#
in reply to Gordon J Holtslander

@bobjmsn Canada also limits political funding to individuals with a current limit of $1700 per individual. No superPAC's no wealthy individual influencing more. Canada tries to keep wealth out of politics, https://www.elections.ca/content.aspx?section=pol&dir=lim&document=lim2023&lang=e
in reply to Ricki Is Not A Wizard Tarr

This might win as my most polarizing question, but lots of great answers, plenty to learn and think through.
in reply to Ricki Is Not A Wizard Tarr

ngl, I think only you could post a question this hot and not have an absolute bloody street fight in the replies. lol. props. Great convo.
Unknown parent

Ricki Is Not A Wizard Tarr
@darkware That can definitely be a rub