It’s time for an electoral reform uprising

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Wilf Day
It’s time for an electoral reform uprising

 

Wilf Day

[url=http://www.rabble.ca/in_his_own_words.shtml?x=76945]Larry Gordon:[/url]

quote:

Another federal election. Another train wreck for democracy.

We have seen it all before. The only question is whether we learned anything new this time. As Albert Einstein said, “Insanity is doing the same thing over and over, expecting a different result.”

Thanks to our dysfunctional first-past-the-post system, the disconnect between how we marked our ballots and what we got was stunning, as usual. . .

How do we end the insanity of our first-past-the-post system? Let me propose a three-step program.

Step one is to put voting reform where it belongs on the political priority list of the nation: right at the top, above all others, bar none. The same goes for the political priority list of every activist.

Yes, the economy is tanking. Climate change is accelerating. Urban infrastructure is crumbling. And on and on. But we won’t get the right answers from the wrong governments and grossly unrepresentative parliaments.

Step two requires what many would consider an unnatural act. Take your usual political framing and toss it out the door. This is not about left versus right, or urban Canadians versus rural Canadians, or Toronto versus the rest of Canada.

This fight is between ordinary citizens and elites.

At the founding conference of Fair Vote Canada, Judy Rebick said this is possibly the only issue where grassroots citizens on the left and right have a common cause: fighting for real democratic control over those who currently wield undeserved power in a largely unaccountable system. More importantly, if we don’t build a strong multi-partisan front for fair voting, we will simply never win.

Step three is forcing implementation of a citizen-driven reform process that places the electoral reform decision in the hands of voters rather than the governments created by the current system.

One option is to use and improve the citizens’ assembly and referendum models developed in British Columbia and Ontario. New Zealand used another approach. A Royal Commission first identified a number of alternative systems. In an initial referendum, New Zealanders voted on two questions: whether they wanted electoral reform and which of the alternatives they preferred. In a second referendum, they voted on their preferred alternative versus first-past-the-post.

These are the steps we need to take federally – the sooner the better.

Meanwhile, an opportunity for the first provincial breakthrough is quickly approaching. On May 12, 2009, British Columbians will vote in a referendum on the single transferrable vote (STV) proportional voting system, as recommended by the B.C. Citizens’ Assembly on Electoral Reform. . .

If British Columbians crash the 60 per cent threshold on May 12, or vote overwhelmingly in favour making it impossible for the next government to unilaterally negate a majority decision by the electorate, then the reform movement will have its critically important first victory, and others will follow.

Virtually all other Western industrialized nations – the U.K. and U.S being the other outriders – have adopted fair voting systems. Will the results of Election 2008 be the spark that ignites an unstoppable Canadian reform movement? Let’s hope so. It is far beyond the time to drive a wooden stake through the first-past-the-post system and cast out the power-mongers and unjust politics it spawns.

[i]Larry Gordon is co-founder and executive director of [url=http://www.fairvote.ca/]Fair Vote Canada[/url], a multi-partisan citizens’ campaign for electoral reform. [/i]


Tommy_Paine

And we all saw what happened in Ontario, when a fix was attempted. The establishment is clearly going to resist attempts at democracy, and will stop at little in doing so.

A very hard line has to be taken.

A very hard line.

Chester Drawers

I some what agree.

First past the post is obsolete.

I do not think the PR model is the answer either, leads to a more puzzled parliament and ultimately more elections. Italy has a long history of multiple parties, not PR, but they have had what; 50 elections since 1946. Also PR would eliminate the possibility of independents getting elected.

I would prefer a preferential ballot, first choice, second etc. The candidate with the lowest number of votes is dropped and the second choice on the ballots move to the stated candidate.

vaudree

I think that the first course of business it to make it harder to have a Confidence vote - Harper was given a free run because the Liberal-livered were presumably afraid to bring down the government no matter how horrendous the legislation was. With the exception of a Throne Speech or Budget, the house has to vote first whether or not a specific legislation will be subjected to a confidence motion. This means first getting that legislation in.

After that, we can work on electoral reform and abolishing the Senate and stuff like that.

Personally, I think that we should be voting for the candidate in our area but that our vote goes towards the total percentage that the party gets. After the election, the percentage of vote determines how many more seats each party gets and the party gets to choose who fills those seats - the only rule is that they have to fill those seats with candidates that ran in the election (those who did not win their seat).

With that rule, some ridings will have more than one representitive.

That is my idea as to how proportional representation should work - nothing fancy or complicated for the voter, and no tendency towards strategic voting like the German system promotes.

pogge

quote:


I do not think the PR model is the answer either, leads to a more puzzled parliament and ultimately more elections. Italy has a long history of multiple parties, not PR, but they have had what; 50 elections since 1946.

From the blogger who blogs at [i]Idealistic Pragmatist[/i] (who is also currently the Secretary at Fair Vote Canada) [url=http://idealisticpragmatist.blogspot.com/2006/11/myth-1-proportional-rep... Italy and Israel[/url] (among other things):

quote:

Now, in conversations about proportional representation, detractors will inevitably bring up two countries where coalition governments have meant frequent changes of government and/or a great deal of conflict between coalition partners: Israel and Italy. But there is no reason to believe that Israel and Italy behave typically for countries with proportional electoral systems, and there are many reasons to believe that they are in fact completely atypical. In Italy, weakened party discipline can be attributed largely to the practice of secret balloting by MPs in the House, and in Israel, living under a constant threat of war seems likely to have influenced their governments in ways that most European parliamentary democracies have not had to deal with. And finally, both Italy and Israel have historically used versions of pure party list proportional representation (Italy recently switched to a system more similar to Germany's) that Canadian electoral reformers are not interested in introducing in Canada anyway. And both Mixed-Member Proportional and Single Transferable Vote systems do away with the worst of the potential problems of pure list PR by having threshholds for small parties' inclusion in parliament.

[ 29 October 2008: Message edited by: pogge ]

johnpauljones

quote:


Originally posted by vaudree:
[b]I think that the first course of business it to make it harder to have a Confidence vote - [/b]

So that will ensure a Harper majority. Great Idea.

Dion would be the Lib leader if a confidence vote comes before the leadership convention

gram swaraj

quote:


Originally posted by johnpauljones:
[b]Dion would be the Lib leader if a confidence vote comes before the leadership convention[/b]

And then we'll get a 22% voter turnout and 308 Cons in the House of Commons.

ETA: followed by a revolution!!!

[ 29 October 2008: Message edited by: gram swaraj ]

Chester Drawers

Vaudree - With that rule, some ridings will have more than one representitive.

How will the parties determine which ridings get the second member. So the party will determine from its' list of losing candidate who will be the winner. What about the candidates that do not get picked? Might that not breed hard feelings. As an example 13 of 14 ridings in Sask. are con, 1 Lieberal and no dipper. But based on PR the Dippers would pick two candidate to represent in Sask. Of the 14 losing candidates how do you pick them. I see nothing but a mess. Preferential ballot would be the way to go, guarantees a majority to the winner. To prevent issues, ballots where only one choice is picked would be considered void. All candidates would have to be picked 1 through how many candidates are on the ballot.
JMO

Chester Drawers

Where PR might be a valid option would be within the senate. Senators would be appointed based on the popular vote. Eight year terms with 50% of the senators are appointed every 4 years based on popular vote of a general election. The HOC can be first past the post and the senate representative of the PV. What about that? Chamber of sober second thought is now representative of the electorate.

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

quote:


Originally posted by Chester Drawers:
[b]How will the parties determine which ridings get the second member. So the party will determine from its' list of losing candidate who will be the winner. What about the candidates that do not get picked? Might that not breed hard feelings. As an example 13 of 14 ridings in Sask. are con, 1 Lieberal and no dipper. But based on PR the Dippers would pick two candidate to represent in Sask. Of the 14 losing candidates how do you pick them. I see nothing but a mess. Preferential ballot would be the way to go, guarantees a majority to the winner. To prevent issues, ballots where only one choice is picked would be considered void. All candidates would have to be picked 1 through how many candidates are on the ballot.
JMO[/b]

You are identifying a problem that isn't really a problem. In your Sask. scenario it is easy you pick the two candidates form the NDP who got the highest percentage of the popular vote in their riding and still didn't get elected. That way it is still the people who have decided not the party. Any system such a MMP or STV that does not include parties deciding after an election who serves as MP's would be acceptable to me.

jrootham

No real system has the parties picking representatives after the election.

OTOH closed list has been hammered heavily, so it is clear that it is not politically palatable.

largeheartedboy

quote:


Originally posted by Chester Drawers:
[b]I some what agree.

Italy has a long history of multiple parties, not PR, but they have had what; 50 elections since 1946.

[/b]


Quelle surprise - a PR critic TOTALLY DISTORTS the evidence.

Italy has had 18 elections since 1945, which is actually three LESS than Canada has had in the same time period.

Why is it that critics of PR feel the need to make things up to dissuade Canadians from bringing in a real democracy?

Chester Drawers

Democracy is 50% plus one. PR does not give you 50% plus one. Only the preferential ballot gives you 50% plus one.

How can PR give good government? You would have to have 50% plus one of the seats agree on policy. If we were to use PR today, the parties are so polarized you could not get consensus on any legislation. Liberals wanted the Green Shift, Dippers wanted a cap and trade, Bloc wanted a different version of cap and trade. The dippers wanted to drop the corp. tax cuts, the liberals and cons wanted to keep them. How do you bring about consensus. The Bloc is all about Quebec, could care less about the ROC. The dippers and Liberals favor gun control, the Bloc wants no guns and the cons want to drop the registry in favor of tougher sentences on gun crimes.

It will never work, not in Canada where regional issues usually trumpet national issues.

I can see the first past the post for the HOC and PR for the senate within each province.

Catchfire Catchfire's picture

"Democracy is 50% plus one"? I think you have a lot to learn about democracy...

thorin_bane

No it ain't. Democracy is 23 million adults voting on every single thing. That is democracy. Since that isn't possible, we need representation in PROPORTION to the voters will. My second choice doesn't mean that is who I want. Esp now that we won't allow other parties in unless the pay 1000 dollars. How is that democratic? That is a class barrier. I would vote Marx, then commie, trotsky, rhino, etc before voting green or liberal. With the plan you want it will go default to the mush middle candidate everytime. You would see politics stagnate instead of being dynamic. Nice way of trying to stifle new ideas, and destroying democracy.

Chester Drawers

It is the basis of all true electorial systems. How are party leaders elected? How are union bosses elected? 50% plus one.

You have to apply the same principle to everything. Should PR be used in determining union shops. A simple majority give the union the shop. Should not the same rights then apply to allowing multiple unions to run in a unionization drive, different employees may want a different union, based on PR they should get to choose their representatives, what if a minority didn't want the union, PR gives them the right to opt out would it not. Some cannot be more equal than others. Everything must be treated the same.

A preferential ballot would give true democracy. Take for example the Dipper finishes second ahead of the liberals and greens, under a preferencial ballot the second choice votes of the Liberals and Greens would then be distributed accordingly. There were alot of ridings where Dippers finished second and under PB they might have won those seats giving them more seats. Those seats would have been truely democratic as the true magority voted for the candidate. PB then truely reflects the electorate.

Tommy_Paine

I don't think it's necessary to get bogged down in actual details at this juncture, as fun as the arguements can be.

People who want democracy have to organize a pro-democracy movement that just tells government, and educates the public that first past the post in not democratic in this day and age, if it ever was.

Let the politicians offer up the alternatives, and let them keep offering utill they come up with a system or systems that can be voted on in a refferendum. A referendum that does not include "first past the post", and one that is held seperately from any other election.

And you have to find a way to make them do it.

Catchfire Catchfire's picture

Democracy does not start and stop at election time, and it sure as hell ain't rule of the majority. That's called tyranny.

Doug

The trouble is making non-wonks care about it. Otherwise, we might as well say that it's time for a reading the tax code uprising. In the attempt to change this in Ontario, it turned out that either people didn't care about or didn't understand the proposed reform and so they rejected it.

Fidel

I think there has to be support for advanced democracy at top levels of all major political parties. If our two autocratic parties prefer phony majorities, and now exaggerated minorities propped up with 22 percent of registered voter support, then supporters of those two old parties aren't going to bite either. The two old parties have to [i]want[/i] to legitimize their strangleholds on power, and right now they just don't believe they are popular enough to win true majorities. I think leaders of one of the two old line parties might crack and break down to the idea of PR, if their party can't realize a false majority before very long.

Jacob Richter

I propose this instead:

[i]The combating of degenerative personality politics through the institution, in the various legislatures, of the closed-list, proportional-representative form [b]that allows mere parties to arbitrarily appoint to and remove from legislatures the party-affiliated legislators[/b].[/i]

Even if single-transferrable voting were used, the increase in party power is recommended.

Although this mechanism sounds harsh, it also sends a message to political parties' ranks-and-file to be more aggressive in promoting internal democracy.

Furthermore, wayward legislators who vote against the party line (EVEN heads of government) can be removed and replaced without reducing the party's seats.

Historically speaking, I was inspired by the SPD's vote for WWI credits in Germany. The opportunistic legislators didn't tow the party line laid out by the SPD Executive Committee in the five or so years leading to the war.

[ 29 October 2008: Message edited by: Jacob Richter ]

largeheartedboy

quote:


Originally posted by Chester Drawers:
[b]Democracy is 50% plus one. PR does not give you 50% plus one. Only the preferential ballot gives you 50% plus one.
[/b]

I agree that in a democracy most policies should be supported by a majority of citizens. That is a normatively valid view of democracy.

However, the problem is that both first-past-the-post (and the alternative vote), fail miserably at producing governments that are supported by the majority.

Meanwhile, in most countries with PR electoral systems, governments are comprised of multiple parties that are, together, supported by a majority of voters.

quote:

Originally posted by Chester Drawers:
[b]

How can PR give good government? You would have to have 50% plus one of the seats agree on policy.

[/b]


I thought your view of democracy was majority rule. Now it's a BAD thing for policies to be supported by the majority.

You're confusing me Chester.

quote:

Originally posted by Chester Drawers:
[b]

It will never work, not in Canada where regional issues usually trumpet national issues.

[/b]


And this is a function of our outdated voting system, which rewards regionally focused parties while punishing smaller parties that made pan-Canadian appeals.

This was well-established by Alan Cairns in the first volume of the Canadian Journal of Political Science fourty years ago and has be confirmed by elections since.

And an alternative vote system (what you call a preferential ballot) would do nothing to ameliorate this problem.

largeheartedboy

quote:


Originally posted by Chester Drawers:
[b]It is the basis of all true electorial systems. How are party leaders elected? How are union bosses elected? 50% plus one.

You have to apply the same principle to everything. [/b]


Actually, electing a single position - party leader, union boss, president - is ENTIRELY different than electing a parliament/legislature.

I can't imagine how you could successfully argue that they are the same thing and should, therefore, use the same voting system.

largeheartedboy

quote:


Originally posted by Tommy_Paine:
[b]

People who want democracy have to organize a pro-democracy movement that just tells government, and educates the public that first past the post in not democratic in this day and age, if it ever was.

[/b]


Thankfully, Canadians do have just such a movement - [url=http://fairvote.ca]Fair Vote Canada[/url].

Have you joined yet?

gram swaraj

quote:


Originally posted by Tommy_Paine:
[b]I don't think it's necessary to get bogged down in actual details at this juncture...People who want democracy have to organize a pro-democracy movement that just tells government, and educates the public that first past the post in not democratic...Let the politicians offer up the alternatives, and let them keep offering utill they come up with a system or systems that can be voted on in a refferendum. A referendum that does not include "first past the post", and one that is held seperately from any other election.[/b]

Ditto, except for the idea that politicians come up with the alternatives. Citizens' groups like Fair Vote Canada make invaluable contributions to the discussion.

Educating the public is the first, long, gruelling task. But without this step, forget continuing with any other reforms. Who would do this? It should be led by citizens groups, and it would be nice if political parties supported a national commission-type thing on electoral reform. How long would the initial education stage last? I'd say at least one year if given fair media attention.

Then, a referendum, [b]separate from any other vote[/b], would be needed on whether we want electoral reform or not, yes or no, without asking precisely what system.

Assuming that goes through, then the devils in the details have to be worked out - more long, gruelling work, more public education of all the alternatives and competing considerations. The national commission's work will have only begun. I'd say this would consist of at least two years of brochure distributing, town-hall meetings across the country, and fair media attention. And then another referendum, separate from any other vote.

[ 29 October 2008: Message edited by: gram swaraj ]

Brian White

Actually democracy is better than that. In ireland about 80% of votes help elect someone.
and this figure is constant from election to election.
I do not have the figures for list systems (there are variations) but they might be similar.
In Canada most votes go to losing candidates.
list PR is perhaps a version you are talking about, Ireland has STV PR and there are other PR systems too.
I think you are talking about AV Alternative Vote which is not concidered a pro rep system at all!
It can be even worse than first past the post.
So you need to look into it in more detail.
Brian

quote:

Originally posted by Chester Drawers:
[b]Democracy is 50% plus one. PR does not give you 50% plus one. Only the preferential ballot gives you 50% plus one.

How can PR give good government? You would have to have 50% plus one of the seats agree on policy. If we were to use PR today, the parties are so polarized you could not get consensus on any legislation. Liberals wanted the Green Shift, Dippers wanted a cap and trade, Bloc wanted a different version of cap and trade. The dippers wanted to drop the corp. tax cuts, the liberals and cons wanted to keep them. How do you bring about consensus. The Bloc is all about Quebec, could care less about the ROC. The dippers and Liberals favor gun control, the Bloc wants no guns and the cons want to drop the registry in favor of tougher sentences on gun crimes.

It will never work, not in Canada where regional issues usually trumpet national issues.

I can see the first past the post for the HOC and PR for the senate within each province.[/b]


peterjcassidy peterjcassidy's picture

deleted --double post

[ 29 October 2008: Message edited by: peterjcassidy ]

peterjcassidy peterjcassidy's picture

Something to discuss? I thought this was a good place to throw out a new governance model that does address public funding.

Appropriate funding and a Mixed Member PR system.

1. 400 constituency riding seats,100 PR seats.

2. Fixed election date-say 2nd Monday in October every three years- for first round of voting.

3. All riding candidates are required to provide a one thousand dollar deposit, $500 refundable on paperwork,plus nomination papers signed by 100 voters in the riding.

4. There is a generous tax credit system for political donations (75% of donations up to one thousand dollars per year limit?)

5. Any candidate in a riding getting more than 10% of the vote is entitled to a rebate of 60% of eligible campaign expenses.

6. To win a riding seat in this first round, you need over 50% of the vote, unlikely in most cases,especially given the PR aspects discussed below, and in most cases a run-off is held.

7. The riding run-offs, held on a fixed date, will be amongst the top two candidates and any candidate getting over 15% of the votes who wishes her name included.

8. The first round of voting for riding representatives will also determine proportional representation. For every two percent of the vote received, a party may appoint two representatives to the Parliament for one year terms. Excess goes to the party with the highest number of votes.

9. Any party getting more than 2% of the vote receives $2 a year per vote.

10. At the first session of Parliament a Prime Minister shall be elected by majority vote of the Members of Parliament. The Prime Minister shall have all the powers of a Prime Minister, including the appointment and dismissal of cabinet.

11 On a non-confidence motion succeeding, the Members of Parliament shall elect a new Prime Minister.

12. Abolish the Senate and replace the office of the Governor General with equivalent weak President office, filled by the same run-off method.
-------------------------------

This system would induce a number of parties, big and small, of different beliefs and visions, to run candidates and get some appropriate recognition, including representation and opportunities for coalition building. The constituency reps would have to be acceptable to most of the communities in the riding. as would have to be the Parliament as a whole.

coeus

quote:


Originally posted by Chester Drawers:
[b]I do not think the PR model is the answer either, leads to a more puzzled parliament and ultimately more elections. [/b]

Yes, let us ignore all of the examples of PR working well, like in Sweden, Norway, Finland, Australia (STV is a PR system), etc.

Sweden and Norway have 7 parties in parliament and I don't think they're having problems finding a functioning government.

Since you say you're against PR, then I assume you favour Instant Run-off as the preferential system you mentioned. This is exactly the kind of system the Liberals would want (one that Dion even spoke in favour of) because it would benefit them most. It isn't proportional, thus it's not much of a reform.

coeus

quote:


Originally posted by kropotkin1951:
[b]You are identifying a problem that isn't really a problem. In your Sask. scenario it is easy you pick the two candidates form the NDP who got the highest percentage of the popular vote in their riding and still didn't get elected. That way it is still the people who have decided not the party. Any system such a MMP or STV that does not include parties deciding after an election who serves as MP's would be acceptable to me.[/b]

Absolutely..

[url=http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Open_list]http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Open...

This should be a requirement in any PR system

Mr.Canada

I find it funny that only now since the CPC has twice in a row formed a gov't that has the left been crying for reform.

Where was this banter when the Liberals were in power for 13 years?

FPTP is perfect. One gets the most votes, one wins perfect. Not everyone wins, that's life. Get used to it.

I understand that in today's world people are raising their kids to expect a reward for everything and constant positive reinforcement.

We are turning into a country of wimps if you ask me.

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

You seem to have stumbled onto the wrong board. The people here have always called for PR since this board started.

Your macho tone is so pathetic its funny. Oh and by the way using my country's name as your handle tells me you have no respect for any diversity of opinion. Only your view is the Canadian view is what your handle claims. As a Canadian I must say it is very Republican of you.

quote:

Originally posted by Mr.Canada:
[b]I find it funny that only now since the CPC has twice in a row formed a gov't that has the left been crying for reform.

Where was this banter when the Liberals were in power for 13 years?

FPTP is perfect. One gets the most votes, one wins perfect. Not everyone wins, that's life. Get used to it.

I understand that in today's world people are raising their kids to expect a reward for everything and constant positive reinforcement.

We are turning into a country of wimps if you ask me.[/b]


Mr.Canada

quote:


Originally posted by kropotkin1951:
[b]You seem to have stumbled onto the wrong board. The people here have always called for PR since this board started.

Your macho tone is so pathetic its funny. Oh and by the way using my country's name as your handle tells me you have no respect for any diversity of opinion. Only your view is the Canadian view is what your handle claims. As a Canadian I must say it is very Republican of you. [/b]


If it isn't so than prove me wrong. Don't try to merely personally attack me. That is for the weak. Attack what I'm saying if you can.

thorin_bane

And it still limits smaller parties from ever being able to establish themselves with the minimum rules. More important is the party stance on the issues. Bloc, they would be very diminished even in MMP, so they won't support the system. The cons, wouldn't find a dance partner and no chance of a majority, they also wouldn't support it. Greens support it but have no seats so they can't even help pass the legislation. NDP, depends on who you ask. I am still pissed at Dave Cooke for saying it was a waste for Ontario...thanks DAVE [img]mad.gif" border="0[/img] Finally the libs...for them it is only brought up if it is a run off for second votes for 50% plus 1. Which would overwhelmingly give them an eternal lock on majorities, it isn't PR in any way shape or form, in fact it would be worse than FPTP. Under the present or thier proposed system is the only way the can ge and hold power. SO really no party is in favour of moving to PR because other than the NDP and greens(who can't vote for legislation) it doesn't benefit any of the other parties. Nonstarter and a waste of time.

Mr.Canada

quote:


Originally posted by thorin_bane:
[b]And it still limits smaller parties from ever being able to establish themselves with the minimum rules. More important is the party stance on the issues. Bloc, they would be very diminished even in MMP, so they won't support the system. The cons, wouldn't find a dance partner and no chance of a majority, they also wouldn't support it. Greens support it but have no seats so they can't even help pass the legislation. NDP, depends on who you ask. I am still pissed at Dave Cooke for saying it was a waste for Ontario...thanks DAVE [img]mad.gif" border="0[/img] Finally the libs...for them it is only brought up if it is a run off for second votes for 50% plus 1. Which would overwhelmingly give them an eternal lock on majorities, it isn't PR in any way shape or form, in fact it would be worse than FPTP. Under the present or thier proposed system is the only way the can ge and hold power. SO really no party is in favour of moving to PR because other than the NDP and greens(who can't vote for legislation) it doesn't benefit any of the other parties. Nonstarter and a waste of time.[/b]

Excellent post sir.

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

quote:


Originally posted by Mr.Canada:
[b]

If it isn't so than prove me wrong. [/b]


Gee you missed the part where I informed you that on this board the discussion about PR has been going on for years.

quote:

I find it funny that only now since the CPC has twice in a row formed a gov't that has the left been crying for reform.
Where was this banter when the Liberals were in power for 13 years?

I totally refuted the main point of your argument but I note you still like the tough guy in your face language and are not willing to acknowledge that in the milieu you have entered your opening statement is factually wrong and therefore irrelevant to this discussion board.

thorin_bane

quote:


Originally posted by Mr.Canada:
[b]

If it isn't so than prove me wrong. Don't try to merely personally attack me. That is for the weak. Attack what I'm saying if you can.[/b]


Troll be gone. I vanquish thee. What you are saying is completely wrong. Obviously you just want us to reply to your useless dangle(if you can) [b]IF YOU CAN[/b] try reading any of the threads around here as to why [b]YOU[/b] are wrong.

BTW asshat do you even know what [i]banter[/i] means?

quote:

n.

Good-humored, playful conversation.


[ 30 October 2008: Message edited by: thorin_bane ]

Mr.Canada

Perhaps you have discussed it here but we haven't heard about it in the media til recently.

It's only coming up now in the media because of Mr. Harper. No media outlet was a proponent of the PR system until the implosion of the Liberal Party.

I understand you're not used to having people disagree with you around here. Sorry to burst your bubble.

Noise

quote:


I understand you're not used to having people disagree with you around here.

Lol, haven't been on babble long have you? The board is bascially one giant disagreement.

quote:

It's only coming up now in the media because of Mr. Harper. No media outlet was a proponent of the PR system until the implosion of the Liberal Party.

A media outlet being a proponent of PR? I assume you mean CBC. Perhaps it's more of an issue of the Conservative owned media not being bright enough to challenge FPTP for 13 years while the Liberals were in? Heh, correction.. Make that the Reeeeforrrrrrrrrrm owned media not being bright enough to challenge FPTP

er.. FYI, Liberals are a center-right party at best while in power. Try not to mixup Toronto-centrist policy with Leftist policy [img]wink.gif" border="0[/img]

[ 30 October 2008: Message edited by: Noise ]

Mr.Canada

quote:


Originally posted by Noise:
[b]

A media outlet being a proponent of PR? I assume you mean CBC. Perhaps it's more of an issue of the Conservative owned media not being bright enough to challenge PR for 13 years while the Liberals were in? Heh, correction.. Make that the Reeeeforrrrrrrrrrm owned media not being bright enough to challenge FPTP

er.. FYI, Liberals are a center-right party at best while in power. Try not to mixup Toronto-centrist policy with Leftist policy [img]wink.gif" border="0[/img]

[ 30 October 2008: Message edited by: Noise ]

[ 30 October 2008: Message edited by: Noise ][/b]


I largely dislike the CBC, it's a left biased media as are almost all the media outlets.

All media is owned by Liberal supporting groups. I don't recall any media backing the Tories in 2006. They did in the last election because of the lame duck leader Mr. Dion was and still is.

The Liberals are no where near the centre. Look at their policies and tell me they are centrist, yeah right.

The CPC has moved into the centre and are spending like crazy.

Noise

quote:


I largely dislike the CBC, it's a left biased media as are almost all the media outlets.

I think you're confusing toronto-centric with leftist again.

quote:

All media is owned by Liberal supporting groups.

Hmm, which channels are you watching? Anything from Canwest is tilted to the cons, especially anything out west. In Calgary we had the Canwest newsgirl cheer on the Conservatives (go team go) while displaying the election results.

quote:

The Liberals are no where near the centre. Look at their policies and tell me they are centrist, yeah right.

During campaigns they're lefties... But I said while ruling they are right of center. Tell me Chretiens and Martins reign wasn't center-right... Though I guess it depends where you draw the center line.

quote:

The CPC has moved into the centre and are spending like crazy.

Liberals acting conservative and conservatives acting liberal in order to get votes... Get the feeling that the words conservative vs liberal means nothing beyond getting candians to identify to the parties brand?

thorin_bane

No after every election we get conservatives coming in here and calling us liberals and taunting us about our defeat. We aren't liberals(most of us) we have a few conservatives, red tories, greens and a lot of dippers. So the NDP while not happy with greater gains are still happy with a better result than last lection, not that the house changed much in make up for the 300 million it cost this so called fiscal government.

Funny you mention the MSM, as we get to hear the right wing view all the time from them, you NEVER see our point of view in the media. PR has been brought up many times in the media depending on where you live, usually in the negative. I think it has less to do with the [i]liberals[/i] losing than the fact voter apathy is getting higher and higher, even the conservatives had 168000 fewer votes than last time. It is because voices are not being heard. You can easily imagine a libertarian party springing up from the right as proper representation from the left with PR. I know a lot of conservatives upset with harper who spoiled their ballads or didn't vote. This is bad for democracy. If turnout had been 50% or less I think the push for electoral reform would HAVE to come about.

thorin_bane

quote:


Originally posted by Mr.Canada:
[b]

I largely dislike the CBC, it's a left biased media as are almost all the media outlets.

All media is owned by Liberal supporting groups. I don't recall any media backing the Tories in 2006. They did in the last election because of the lame duck leader Mr. Dion was and still is.

The Liberals are no where near the centre. Look at their policies and tell me they are centrist, yeah right.

The CPC has moved into the centre and are spending like crazy.[/b]


Do you watch CTV(mike duffy live is increadibly rightwing) or Global, what newspaper do you read, ours has been saying vote reform back to 1993. SO your views are well placed in the media just not the toronto centric CBC(just watch HNIC to know it is TO centric) National Post, MacLeans, even Globe and mail are all supporting harper. To be honest why would G&P not route for Paul Martin to win the election back in 2004, he was the most rightwing finance minister in canadian history. He still holds the record for most tax cuts in the shortest period(100 billion in 5 year) while slashing more spending(see health care, education, downloading) than ANYONE. It wasn't until Paul Martin put a tax break on hold for childcare(they like to claim for themsleves even if it was and NDP forced idea) did the media get on martin. They the MSM don't care about criminal records(sponsorship scandal, is just a means to an end) otherwise gordon campbell wouldn't be in office right now.

[ 30 October 2008: Message edited by: thorin_bane ]

Noise

quote:


I know a lot of conservatives upset with harper who spoiled their ballads or didn't vote. This is bad for democracy. If turnout had been 50% or less I think the push for electoral reform would HAVE to come about.

Heh, I spoiled mine with a vote for John McCain... There wasn't enough room to write a pro-hockey mom for VP comment.

We were right around 50% through most of calgary... The Calgary North-East riding had a lil under 39'000 votes with 82187 registered voters. My riding was 47k out of 87k... The only ridings that drew out more of a vote was where independant conservatives were running.

You're right that this is bad for democracy, in the same way kicking a dead horse repeatedly is bad for the dead horse.

[ 30 October 2008: Message edited by: Noise ]

thorin_bane

quote:


Originally posted by Noise:
[b]

Heh, I spoiled mine with a vote for John McCain... There wasn't enough room to write a pro-hockey mom for VP comment.

We were right around 50% through most of calgary... The Calgary North-East riding had a lil under 39'000 votes with 82187 registered voters. My riding was 47k out of 87k... The only ridings that drew out more of a vote was where independant conservatives were running.

You're right that this is bad for democracy, in the same way kicking a dead horse repeatedly is bad for the dead horse.

[ 30 October 2008: Message edited by: Noise ][/b]


Down in Windsor we also had a lot of voter apathy and Brian and Joe both won with something like 10,000 more than any rivals with just 49% turnout. When the system becomes so imbeded with the same people always returning with little to no challenge they don't respond to their constituants because there is no fear. Not even Jaffer had fear of losing and he lost! That equals unrsponsive government whether you are right, left, center or crazy.

It's Me D

quote:


You're right that this is bad for democracy, in the same way kicking a dead horse repeatedly is bad for the dead horse.

[img]biggrin.gif" border="0[/img]

largeheartedboy

quote:


Originally posted by thorin_bane:
[b]NDP, depends on who you ask. [/b]

The federal NDP has been consistent supporters of PR for federal elections.

In fact, they brought forward legislative initiatives on the issue in the past three parliaments.

I agree that the Ontario NDP kind of sold MMP up the creek for Northern Ontario seats last year. How did that work out Howard?

largeheartedboy

quote:


Originally posted by Mr.Canada:
[b]I find it funny that only now since the CPC has twice in a row formed a gov't that has the left been crying for reform.

Where was this banter when the Liberals were in power for 13 years?

[/b]


Actually, Canadians from all points on the political spectrum have been calling for electoral reform for about a decade.

In 2000, Fair Vote Canada, the national movement for proportional representation, was founded as a multi-partisan, citizen-based campaign bringing together people from all parts of the country, all walks of life and all points on the political spectrum. Prominent right-of-centre PR supporters include Senator Hugh Segal, columnist Andrew Coyne, former Canadian Taxpayers Federation head Walter Robinson, former Reform strategist Rick Anderson and columnist Andrew Coyne.

In fact, the current Prime Minister even supported PR before he starting casting aside his principles.

quote:

[b]

FPTP is perfect. One gets the most votes, one wins perfect. Not everyone wins, that's life. Get used to it.

[/b]


So you would rather elections are about winning and losing, rather than fairly representing voters?

Frankly, I think the latter is a much more DEMOCRATIC way of viewing elections. And as I indicated above, many conservatives support fair and democratic elections, perhaps after good faiths discussions here you may become one yourself.

Although with the attitude you're showing here, you might not last long, which is too bad, I'm all for (respectful) conservative voices on rabble.

largeheartedboy

quote:


Originally posted by Mr.Canada:
[b]

All media is owned by Liberal supporting groups. I don't recall any media backing the Tories in 2006. [/b]


If your goal in this thread is to confirm the prejudices of most people on this board that right-wingers are ignorant, then you're doing a bang up job!

[url=http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Newspaper_endorsements_in_the_Canadian_fede... endorsements in the 2006 federal election[/url]

Looks like in the the real world, and not in your paranoid right-wing fantasies, almost every media outlet endorsed Harper last election.

Noise

quote:


The federal NDP has been consistent supporters of PR for federal elections.

They should be louder supporters of it then and champion the issue much more... The Greens are the ones primarily being identified with this. E May bringing it up in the debate early had several Conservatives I know vote green this election. Mind you, that is in part from knowing that their riding was going conservative pretty much no matter what. Gives you more freedom to vote for whatever you want to when you know your vote can't affect the outcome.

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