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View Poll Results: Should voting be compulsory ?
Yes 19 36.54%
No 33 63.46%
Other 0 0%
Who voted? Voters: 52
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Posts: 2097/2297
(18-Oct-2008 at 12:46)


Quote:
Awesome. "I don't believe in the system so I will seperate myself as far as possible from the only way I might ever contribute to changing it"

=\
You can't change the system by voting, because politicians who are against the democratic system as a whole are not allowed to take part in the elections. I can't run saying I want to reinstall an absolute monarchy for example.

But your missing the point. Why is it better that 500 people vote of whom 200 only care a tiny bit, than that 300 people vote who care a lot? I'd say that the latter will give a much better result.

Modern world I'm not pleased to meet you

You just bring me down
#21  
View Public Profile Find more posts by Caelis666 Add Caelis666 to your Buddy List Reply with Quote
Posts: 1251/1971
(18-Oct-2008 at 13:02)


Quote:
You can't change the system by voting, because politicians who are against the democratic system as a whole are not allowed to take part in the elections. I can't run saying I want to reinstall an absolute monarchy for example.
Well in any democracy you should be allowed to run on any platform. If you mean that a candidate who advocated absolute monarchy would be legally excluded from running, then the Dutch system is undemocratic

Quote:
ut your missing the point. Why is it better that 500 people vote of whom 200 only care a tiny bit, than that 300 people vote who care a lot? I'd say that the latter will give a much better result.
But that doesn't matter. It is undemocratic because the 200 aren't represented.

Tax collectors are a valid military target - chobham
#22  
View Public Profile Find more posts by Spectre19 Add Spectre19 to your Buddy List Reply with Quote
Posts: 348/389
(18-Oct-2008 at 13:11)


Re: Should voting be compulsory ?

Originally Posted by Spectre19: View Post
You can force those that do care a tiny bit to make a difference.
But people that do care don't need to be forced since they'd vote by themselfs.

Originally Posted by Spectre19: View Post
And yes, you can, because if you force somebody to make a choice, most arent going to have a big cry about how you are infringing their freedoms, they will just think about what choice to make and choose.
I'm quite sure there would be plenty of people that would have a problem with it. And forcing people won't make them care, at most it'll make them care about not getting the consequences of not voting.

Originally Posted by Spectre19: View Post
But that doesn't matter. It is undemocratic because the 200 aren't represented.
No it isn't, since they chose to not vote, which seems very democratic to me.

Last edited by activ8, 18-Oct-2008 at 13:13.
#23  
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Posts: 2098/2297
(18-Oct-2008 at 13:38)


Re: Should voting be compulsory ?

Originally Posted by Spectre19: View Post
Well in any democracy you should be allowed to run on any platform. If you mean that a candidate who advocated absolute monarchy would be legally excluded from running, then the Dutch system is undemocratic
I'm pretty sure that it's the same in Australia. You can't run saying that you want to abolish the democracy, because that would be against the constitution.

Quote:
But that doesn't matter. It is undemocratic because the 200 aren't represented.
Neither are the people who vote for a candidate that loses if you count it that strictly. They had a chance they vote, but they didn't, which is also a democratic choice. Hence, their choice is represented, namely in that it has no effect, exactly like they wanted it.

But more fundamentally: Why is it more important that everyone is represented (even the people that don't want to be represented) than that a better result is achieved?

Modern world I'm not pleased to meet you

You just bring me down
#24  
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(Posted as Celtic20)
Posts: 330/410
(18-Oct-2008 at 13:50)


Re: Should voting be compulsory ?

Originally Posted by Spectre19: View Post
But you can maximise the care factor.

which is exactly why it should be compulsory - so people that care don't boycott out of being "pissed off" because the system can't be perfect.

Maximise the care factor? What kinda BS is that? If im forced to vote i won't care anymore then if i didnt have to vote. I would just spoil my vote to piss off the government for pissing off me.

Oh so people shouldn't be pissed off that the system isn't fair?

Well if i was a politician and I saw that 1/3 of a state didnt vote because the system was unfair I would work to change the system to be more fair.

And I know you will agree with me when i say that the electoral college system is really unfair
#25  
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Posts: 1252/1971
(18-Oct-2008 at 13:56)


Quote:
But people that do care don't need to be forced since they'd vote by themselfs.
I'm talking about those that have an inkling of who they want in government but not enough to get up and vote unless they have to. If voting isnt compulsory, they are completely unrepresented.

Quote:
No it isn't, since they chose to not vote, which seems very democratic to me.
No it isn't. It's freedom, it is not democracy. Voting for nobody is not a pragmatically possible choice, and therefore by making that choice you are giving a big fuck you to democracy. Which should not be allowed in a democracy.

Quote:
I'm pretty sure that it's the same in Australia. You can't run saying that you want to abolish the democracy, because that would be against the constitution.
The constitution is not inalterable. If there was support for it, absolute monarchy would return, and yes, if someone said they would reinstate absolute monarchy I am 99.999999% sure they would be allowed to run.

Quote:
But more fundamentally: Why is it more important that everyone is represented (even the people that don't want to be represented) than that a better result is achieved?
Because it is not a better result. The only good result is the most representative. This would require a revamp of the entire electoral system in most cases, but it also requires EVERYBODY TO VOTE.

What you are saying is, essentially, that you would rather a perfect dictatorship than an imperfect democracy.

Tax collectors are a valid military target - chobham
#26  
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Posts: 2099/2297
(18-Oct-2008 at 14:10)


That the better result is per defenition the most representative result is of course pure nonsense. In that case, it would be better to ask everyone their opinion on every issue, or at least on all important issues. The reason why we don't do this is because it costs an insane amount of money and an insane amount of time. This makes the goverment less representative, but a damn lot better.

Similarly, forcing people to vote out of an empty principle just isn't worth the costs.

And yes, I would prefer a perfect dictatorship over democracy as it is now. The problem being of course that there is no such thing as the former, which is why we have an imperfect democracy.

Modern world I'm not pleased to meet you

You just bring me down
#27  
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Posts: 1253/1971
(18-Oct-2008 at 14:18)


What do you mean it isn't worth the costs? How much does it cost? A bit extra in paper? Couple of hours more counting time? How about the campaign costs that are poured down the drain from trying to turn out the vote?

And the problem is not that a perfect dictatorship doesnt exist (although i will grant, it is a significant obstacle ) the problem is that no matter how well we are governed by a dictator, we are not choosing who is governing us, which is fundamentally wrong.

Tax collectors are a valid military target - chobham
#28  
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Posts: 349/389
(18-Oct-2008 at 14:23)


Re: Should voting be compulsory ?

Originally Posted by Spectre19: View Post
And the problem is not that a perfect dictatorship doesnt exist (although i will grant, it is a significant obstacle ) the problem is that no matter how well we are governed by a dictator, we are not choosing who is governing us, which is fundamentally wrong.
That wouldn't be a problem to me, not if everything else the dictator does would be right in my eyes. Obviously this is very unrealistic though.

Last edited by activ8, 18-Oct-2008 at 14:25.
#29  
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Posts: 2100/2297
(18-Oct-2008 at 14:45)


Re: Should voting be compulsory ?

Originally Posted by Spectre19: View Post
What do you mean it isn't worth the costs? How much does it cost? A bit extra in paper? Couple of hours more counting time? How about the campaign costs that are poured down the drain from trying to turn out the vote?

And the problem is not that a perfect dictatorship doesnt exist (although i will grant, it is a significant obstacle ) the problem is that no matter how well we are governed by a dictator, we are not choosing who is governing us, which is fundamentally wrong.
Currently I'm being told by the majority what to do. How is that any less fundamentally wrong, especially if the majority is imperfect while we could have a perfect ruler? If someone's gonna tell me what to do, I'd rather it be someone who actually knew what he was doing.

And the costs (I don't mean merely financial costs here) of forcing people to vote are a lot more than just a bit extra paper and a bit more counting time. The system works most efficiently when the people who vote are all well informed. The more people you add who are not interested in learning about their voting options, the less efficient the system becomes.

Modern world I'm not pleased to meet you

You just bring me down

Last edited by Caelis666, 18-Oct-2008 at 14:53.
#30  
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(18-Oct-2008 at 14:46)


Re: Should voting be compulsory ?

Originally Posted by Spectre19: View Post
Awesome. "I don't believe in the system so I will seperate myself as far as possible from the only way I might ever contribute to changing it".

Fantasy land politics we live in a democratic country that is govern by two parties ........ my vote meens absolutly nothing I know that and I'm not going to waste my time voting in a system I do not beleive in.

I will also not waste my time and pay them their stand over money.

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#31  
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(Posted as DeRnhelm)
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(18-Oct-2008 at 16:54)


I guess you can't force people to have an opinion. I can't say for other countries, but in Norway the thing all the parties argue about is how to use 5% of the total resources. I can see why some won't care.

~ŠeRn~
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#32  
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Posts: 498/742
(18-Oct-2008 at 16:56)


Low voter turn-out is a real issue. Forcing people to vote is one of the worst remedies for that ailment though. Democratic voting is valuable exactly because it is voluntary; it is a right we gained through years of societal struggle. Turning it from an entitlement into a compulsory duty is the perfect way to make people forget those historic origins, and thus turn a social right which they earned into a social duty they feel is forced upon them. Never employ coercion to achieve something which is only valuable because it does not rest upon coercion to begin with.

Instead of taking the punishment route, take the stimulation route; look at the reasons people's don't vote, then fix those where possible and necessary. One is the electoral system; it can be changed. Another one is that voting takes valuable time, which people need to take off of work for example; not everybody can do so. Feeding your kids takes precedence over luxuries like getting to vote, and if you force the opposite, i hope you've got a damn good explanation for that mother and her hungry kids. Other people have to travel too far to be able to cast their vote; fix that instead of forcing them to do so regardless. Finally there's the group of people that simply aren't interested in politics. The only real way to reach those is to build awareness about the importance of the political process; stimulate them to want to vote, don't force them to do something they don't understand, then punish them when they don't. Forcing them to cast uninformed votes regardless adds nothing to the democratic process, as i think Caelis already pointed out pretty well. In fact, it may very well undermine it, as it reinforces the political dynamic whereby slick marketing and populist rhetoric help draw more votes than serious discussion of the underlying issues does.

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#33  
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Posts: 1254/1971
(18-Oct-2008 at 23:04)


One thing I forgot. If voting isn't compulsory, it allows people to be blackmailed into not voting. I have heard (and I admit I don't have a source - might find one later ) that this is an issue in parts of the US.

There is also the issue - that Dusk brought up - of people having to travel too far to vote. That is more of an issue without compulsory voting, because if everyone is forced to vote it also means the government is forced to give everyone a convenient means to vote.

Tax collectors are a valid military target - chobham
#34  
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Posts: 247/293
(18-Oct-2008 at 23:07)


people that dont vote are devided into two groups
1. those that dont care
2. those that feel thier is no party to represent them or live in safe seats/secure states.

I hate the first group but hate the second group even worse.
the first "new labour" elction win in the UK was won by TWO factors, "coservitive" voters not bothering to vote AND people who wouldnt usally vote, voting for "new labour."
this tipped the scales from a win to a landslide, peoples votes that would have been a warning (but effectivly useless vote) to the encombant turned into a vote that actully changed things.

IF YOU DONT CARE ABOUT THE PARTYS BUT YOU CARE ABOUT THE SYSTEM..GO SPOIL A BALLOT PAPER.

enough spoilt papers make politictions ask questions.

remember if you dont vote, you DID vote! YOU voted for the guy in power due to your inaction.

as for the inforced voting. its good as it forces people to make a choice, A$70 seems a fair choice every 4-5 years if i dont want to vote.
however us/uk polititions focas on swing voters, Aus politics seems more everyman, maybe thats due to the voting sytem.

if our labourers party is called Labour, the most conserivtive party are called Conserivitives, and the liberal party called the Liberal Domocrats why aren't the BNP called the English Racist Party.
#35  
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Posts: 1255/1971
(18-Oct-2008 at 23:17)


Quote:
however us/uk polititions focas on swing voters, Aus politics seems more everyman, maybe thats due to the voting sytem.
Man I keep forgetting all my compulsory voting arguments, and then they come up slowly.

If you make voting voluntary, the people more likely to abstain from voting are the less educated. So, politicians will be biased towards pleasing the upper and middle classes - which they are already anyway; it is a problem that shouldn't be aggravated.

Tax collectors are a valid military target - chobham
#36  
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Posts: 466/475
(18-Oct-2008 at 23:27)


Re: Should voting be compulsory ?

Originally Posted by Spectre19: View Post
Here in Australia, if you fail to vote you get sent a letter asking for an explanation why, and if your explanation is unsatisfactory you get a fine. But it's pretty small, like 20 bucks is what I've heard.
Do you know what the 'penalty' for not paying the fine is? getting taken off the electoral role!

As for should voting be compulsory, I think 'attending the vote' should be compulsory, like you should have to go to the polling booth, but you should have the option to choose not to vote like the options would be:

o Obama
o Rudd
o House
o No vote

Coz then that covers what marli said with the no one who represents them, and its fair enough if that option is covered that the slackers should get penalised for being slackers.

In other news, yesterday I voted for the first time. it rocked.

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#37  
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(04-Nov-2008 at 02:49)
I do not think it should be compulsory since the purpose of a democracy is to rule by/through the people. Essentially this means (to me) that the people choose their leaders. By abstaining from voting, a person is indicating that they do not want any candidate or they have no opinion on whatever law is on the ballot at the time.
For instance, on the ballot tomorrow here is an ordinance about marriage being between a man and a woman. I could care less one way or another what marriage is defined as and I am not going to choose either option on the ballot. Had this been the only thing being voted on, I would not vote. Making me vote just so I can draw a penis on the ballot like a child is counterproductive as it means I may be less inclined to believe in the system that wanted me to form an opinion one way or another or else. And no, you cannot make me care about issues that do not concern me. That is not being self-centered either since my vote is about me.

Side note: I will be voting tomorrow and writing my own name in for President.
Local elections I will vote seriously since individual votes do actually count in those elections...except for district judges. I do not know about them, I have never heard of them and I will be leaving them blank rather than make an uninformed decision.
#38  
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(04-Nov-2008 at 20:00)


Re: Should voting be compulsory ?

Originally Posted by Spectre19: View Post
Man I keep forgetting all my compulsory voting arguments, and then they come up slowly.

If you make voting voluntary, the people more likely to abstain from voting are the less educated. So, politicians will be biased towards pleasing the upper and middle classes - which they are already anyway; it is a problem that shouldn't be aggravated.
So essentially the argument here is that we should make voting mandatory so that we can thwart evolution?

Man is the only animal that blushes, or needs to.-- Mark Twain
#39  
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Posts: 1287/1971
(04-Nov-2008 at 23:30)


Quote:
So essentially the argument here is that we should make voting mandatory so that we can thwart evolution?
Yep... because if you don't have a university education, you are useless to society

Tax collectors are a valid military target - chobham
#40  
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