They're not voting because...
- None of the parties deserve my vote. ...
None of the parties deserve my vote. What we need is a 'vote of no confidence' included on the ballot paper, to give us all the power to say that we don't think ANY of the political parties have the ability or the policies to rule this country.written 18th Apr 2005
Jon replies: Great idea, parliament is desolved and then...Doh.written 18th Apr 2005
mike replies: dissolvedwritten 18th Apr 2005
Andy replies: Parliament isn't dissolved, the system works in Austrlia and New Zealand (where they have almost a 100% voter turnout) and if 45% vote no confidence, then the election is void and the parties have to do it all again. It's never happened in either country, and probably because the parties are so aware of the consequences, they actually get their act together. In this country, the problem isn't tackled becuase it's much easier to get a small minority of the country to vote for you than it would be an actual majoritywritten 18th Apr 2005
Ed replies: You make some good points, Andy, but I am not convinced that the parties in Australia "got their act together"; in the most recent election, it appears that economic stability, combined with a dash of xenophobia, won out over an untried and potentially less fiscally-responsible opposition.
Also, one could argue that because people HAVE to vote, plenty of the electorate will be apathetic and largely uninformed - this inevitably turns the contest into something staid and simplistic, with "dog whistle" policy pronouncements (now imported to the Tory campaign from Oz) designed to swing the outcome your way... this would not necessarily rank as an improvement.written 18th Apr 2005
Andy replies: Although in Australia there is a fine if you don't vote, in New Zealand this isn't the case, and yet they still get a 97% voter turn-out! They also have a larger number of referendums, (generally about 1 between every election) and I believe that this is another reason why people vote as they feel that their opinions actually count.written 18th Apr 2005