Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Voters Poll-Axed

The provincial vote is next Monday. For as annoyed with, upset with, and sick of the reigning Conservative Party of 37 years it looks like we’ll return them to power.
Apathy mostly, coupled with mistrust of Liberals and New Democrats and, well, everybody else.

Today’s screaming headline in the Edmonton Journal feeds the apathy as well.
“Another Tory Majority In Sight” we read in big, bold black. Underneath we read in the sub-head “ ‘Enormous’ undecided bloc a wild card, poll finds.” A few sentences later it suggests these undecided voters could mean an unexpected result.

What’ll stick with readers is the screaming headline. We have lousy voter turnout here anyway and this tells us the result is a foregone conclusion. It suggests to the average person, “My vote won’t count anyway, so why bother?”

I’m all for these polls. I think they should be run and they should be publicized. I also think they poll-axe (Thank you Hunter S. Thompson. Please forgive the pun.) us into believing there’s nothing we can do. We’re stuck with the devils we know.

And that’s casting ballot should be mandatory. If every eligible voter voted, then the politicians would have to please us and woo us and actually do us some good rather than simply buying us with our own money. They’d have to prove themselves worthy rather than simply convince us they are the lesser of all the available evils.

Your vote counts.

My vote counts.

If everyone voted, then the party in power would know that they are there because we want them, not because they won by default.

Get out and vote on Monday if you wish to complain on Tuesday.


Crabby McSlacker said...

Hmm, I'm not so sure about the mandatory voting thing... perhaps because in California we have lots of complicated initiatives, and I think people who aren't willing to take some time to consider what they're voting for are dangerously likely to vote for stupid things because they hear a buzz word they like.

While it's too bad that not everyone cares enough to vote, I'm not sure that forcing people who are uninformed to contribute their opinions is such a great thing.

(But then I live in a country that voted for GWB TWICE so I'm naturally a bit skeptical).

Leah J.Utas said...

Interesting take, Crabby. Apathy as a public safety issue never occurred to me.

Reb said...

I do wish that more people would vote. I don't know about having one more thing made mandatory.

Maybe a tax deduction for voters would encourage more people to go and vote instead. After all, they already mark your name off on a list.

Leah J.Utas said...

Mandatory voting is a controversial stand in a democracy. Australia has it to ensure that no one could ever be intimidated into not voting.
I hate the thought of one more law telling us what we can or can't do, but voting is too important to ignore.

the Bag Lady said...

I think Reb might be onto something, but probably, in Redneck Alberta, an incentive like free beer might work better than a measly ol' tax deduction! :)

Leah J.Utas said...

dfBag Lady - Remember way back when? The bars used to be closed during polling hours so no one could influence your vote by buying you a drink.

the Bag Lady said...

Ah, yes, back when the bars were closed on Sundays and there were signs outside. One said "Tavern" and the other said "Ladies and Escorts". Those were the days...

Leah J.Utas said...

Yes they certainly were, dfBag Lady.