They're not voting because...
- One vote in four...
One vote in four years is not democracy. The government talk about having the mandate of the people to go to war, even when the people were noisily against it. I'd like to remind Tony Blair that he and his party have the vote of way below 50% of the adult population and as such should not act as if the whole country thinks they're gods. We don't. We think all of you are slime. Can we have some real democracy now?written 7th Apr 2005
Chris replies: Surely this isn't an argument for not using the one democratic opportunity that you do have?written 7th Apr 2005
Richard replies: A vote every four years sounds suspiciously democratic to me.written 7th Apr 2005
Dave replies: Thinking that politicians are all slime and that party politics in the UK are in need of serious reform (for instance the whip is a totalitarian nonsense) if not abandonment of parties altogether seems to be a good argument for not voting to me.
Also, giving the people some actual say in things would be nice. At the moment referenda are looked upon as weakness in the government. Personally I would like to able to give an opinion on things a little more often.
The most compelling argument though is that people in power take note of those that stay out of it (when in large enough numbers), whereas if i vote for anyone that actually has any good ideas or represents me then my opinion will be drowned out by legions of mindles tabloid readers who can't be bothered to form their own opinions and haven't the patience for any debate more serious than a two second soundbite.written 7th Apr 2005
Dave replies: Also, one vote in four years, followed by the same slimeballs doing whatever they want regardless of what they promised doesn't sound anything much like a democracy to me. Politicians need to be more held to account and the whole populace should have more of a voice than which one of two or three goons they dislike least twice a decade.written 7th Apr 2005
Lee replies: "We think you are slime, can we have some real democracy now?"
That to me just shows what is wrong with this website: we hate politicians, but can you please make it better for us, please?
If you want to make things better the only answer is to take things into your own hands, not slide into the mire of cynicism.written 9th Apr 2005
Ben N replies: In response to someone further up, who said that their voice is drowned out if they vote, whereas people take notice if enough people don't vote -
Firstly, if you don't vote, you have no voice to drown out in the first place. You are acquiescing to the mindless tabloid readers you speak of, and leaving the decision on who to run the country to them?
Secondly, you say "if enough people stay away..." surely if enough people voted, that would make a difference?written 12th Apr 2005
francisn replies: why not split the country up into groups of about 20 people and then they can vote on what they want to do wheneverwritten 19th Apr 2005
O replies: I agree that the politicians should be held to account for their promises made during election campaigns. Perhaps they could be personally fined (or salary increases witheld) if their department doesn't deliver the promises made. After all most workers have objectives/targets, which, if not met, adversely affect their salary.written 21st Apr 2005
thedatabase replies: Healthy cynicism if you ask me Lee. One vote in four years might have sounded like the best anyone could hope for 200 years ago, but today it seems decidedly weak.
With luck, one day the efforts of fine sites like this one might lead to a system that is more worthwhile. More continuous accountability than a one-in-five year circfarce is surely not too much to ask?
Btw 'O': fines! What a great idea... it would certainly be a start... they could start each term with a quota of perks that are successively eliminited for each transgression (ie invert the current scheme)written 23rd Apr 2005
Vickie Mann replies: The chartists fought for universal manhood suffrage. The suffragetes fought and died for votes for women.
Not voting does not frighten anyone. It just enables the party who can rely on their support to get an easy ride. Vote tactically and mobilise.
Don't take your vote for granted, it was hard won.written 23rd Apr 2005
A Teacher replies: As a teacher i also want some democracy in my classes so i ask my students for feedback (directly or indirectly) from time to time. But in some classrooms students want to talk 'how to do classes' all the time, many in order to 'not to do anything else'.
Four years seems to be a reasonable period, though many modern major political and economical decisions take more than that. Many people think that Blair's government did it wrong and have retired its support, but perhaps not voting has resulted in a Blair's victory.
Democracy improves learning to use (and using) the 'gears' that democracy itself has foreseen, before others distort the reality and try to force a bad use for its own interest. Voting is just only one of these gears ...written 6th May 2005