• praxis
    5.2k


    I haven't made that assumption. I don't even know if you live in a democracy, though I think you live in the UK. Do you live in a democracy? and if so, do you value and benefit from living in that democracy?
  • Isaac
    8k
    Do you live in a democracy? and if so, do you value and benefit from living in that democracy?praxis

    I've already answered that. Yes, and yes. What's any of this got to do with voting?
  • praxis
    5.2k


    If you live in a democracy, benefit from and value that democracy, and you're able to participate in the voting process without an unreasonable burden but choose not to, then in my opinion you're freeloading to some degree. One ought not to freeload.
  • Tom Storm
    4.6k
    I'm Australian and value our 'compulsory voting'. To me it's not a tyranny - it's just a reminder that we have responsibilities as well as freedoms. But no one actually has to vote. We show up for 10-15 minutes and have our name ticked off. Then you are perfectly able to write, "Go fuck yourself!' or some anarchist missive on the ballot paper if you wish to demonstrate how much you hate the system.
  • praxis
    5.2k


    Having just taken a peek, the turnout rate has been around 90% for the last few years in Australia, if I looked at it right and not too briefly. Hugely better than US elections. The quality of US voters is also rather poor considering the recent decisions we’ve made.

    rtx1gzco.webp?w=961&f=1da01d837694dff1e10563576e14dab3
  • Isaac
    8k
    If you live in a democracy, benefit from and value that democracy, and you're able to participate in the voting process without an unreasonable burden but choose not to, then in my opinion you're freeloading to some degree.praxis

    Yes, I gathered that much. I was hoping to find out why, but if you'd rather just restate your original opinion, then you crack on. Not sure you need me to help though.
  • praxis
    5.2k


    I'm having trouble following you. I'd rather not repeat myself, actually.

    Now I can only speculate that your interest is about freeloading, what moral sense it may be based on or something. I can only guess at this point. Oops, just repeated myself again.
  • Isaac
    8k
    I'm having trouble following youpraxis

    It's painfully simple.

    1. You kept claiming that if we value something we take part in it. I gave you counterexamples, it's evident we can value something we don't take part in.

    2. You shifted ground to say we don't neglect that which we value, I agreed.

    I'm now waiting for your argument that my voting is necessary, or even useful, for the maintenance of democracy (the thing I value).
  • Yohan
    449
    If you live in a democracy, benefit from and value that democracy, and you're able to participate in the voting process without an unreasonable burden but choose not to, then in my opinion you're freeloading to some degree. One ought not to freeload.praxis
    This is true if voting is a duty.

    Neglect of duty: bad.
    Fulfillment of duty: not bad.
    Doing good beyond what is required: magnificence

    Someone not paying taxes you could argue is a free loader. Its considered a duty.
    Political involvement, eg, voting, is doing good beyond the requirement of duty (unless you hold a political position, I guess)

    So, if you believe voting is a duty, explain why.
    Because I value or benefit from democracy, does that mean I have a duty to vote?
  • praxis
    5.2k
    So, if you believe voting is a duty, explain why.
    Because I value or benefit from democracy, does that mean I have a duty to vote?
    Yohan

    I wouldn’t describe it as a duty but rather an acceptance of responsibility. Selfishly failing to contribute to a cooperative effort is freeloading. Neglecting an election is a minor instance of freeloading, in my opinion. It seems to me that it’s most inline with the spirit of a “free country” to take responsibility rather than it being dictated to you. This is what I find curious about the libertarian. They should be the first in line to take responsibility, assuming they actually value freedom.
  • praxis
    5.2k


    I choose not to subject you or myself to further tedium or torturous simplicity, Isaac.
  • Isaac
    8k
    Selfishly failing to contribute to a cooperative effort is freeloading.praxis

    You've still failed to lay out any way at all by which voting contributes to the cooperative effort of democracy.

    In situation 1, I vote. In situation 2 I don't vote.

    How is the cooperative effort of democracy less well off in situation 2? What harm has it suffered, what facility or property does it now lack?
  • praxis
    5.2k


    The election that you neglect in situation 2 lacks a vote, obviously. Elections require votes in order to fulfill their purpose.

    Sorry for the pain this simplicity must be causing you, btw.
  • Isaac
    8k
    Elections require votes in order to fulfill their purpose.praxis

    We have regular elections in our country. I've not voted in any of them. They don't seem to have needed my vote. They seem to be carrying on undiminished by the lack. So what am I missing? Is my lack of vote having an unseen impact that will render elections beyond saving in another 50 years?
  • NOS4A2
    6k


    I'm Australian and value our 'compulsory voting'. To me it's not a tyranny - it's just a reminder that we have responsibilities as well as freedoms. But no one actually has to vote. We show up for 10-15 minutes and have our name ticked off. Then you are perfectly able to write, "Go fuck yourself!' or some anarchist missive on the ballot paper if you wish to demonstrate how much you hate the system.

    A protest vote is still a vote. You have to go to a poll and cast a ballot.

    It isn’t clear that voting is the “civic responsibility” we are often told it is, though. And if one believes that no man is good enough to be another’s master, voting might come off as objectionable.
  • praxis
    5.2k


    I think the purpose of an election is essentially to express the will of the community. Abstainers are part of the community but fail to express their will via voting and therefore the election is less successful.

    A hair drier can still function, for example, with many failed parts but its performance will suffer.

    Your drama is unwarranted because no one has claimed, as far as I've seen, that abstaining from an election is any great sin.
  • Isaac
    8k
    the purpose of an election is essentially to express the will of the community.praxis

    I don't see how you could reach such an odd conclusion. If that were the purpose of an election then why is it not in survey format? What are the representatives doing there, and why do they get a job in parliament at the conclusion of the process?

    Maybe I'm missing something, but it seems considerably more plausible that the purpose of elections is to select a representative.


    no one has claimed, as far as I've seen, that abstaining from an election is any great sin.praxis

    Why would it need to be a 'great sin' to warrant a counter argument. You've made the claim several times that people who don't vote are "freeloaders", "neglecting their duty"... etc. I'm just disputing that claim. I've no idea where you're reading some 'drama' into that. Talk of one risking the very existence of democracy strikes me as the more 'dramatic' stance.
  • praxis
    5.2k
    Maybe I'm missing something, but it seems considerably more plausible that the purpose of elections is to select a representative.Isaac

    In American elections, we vote for representatives but also many propositions and such. In any case, it seems to me that making a decision about who represents my interests is an act of will.

    Why would it need to be a 'great sin' to warrant a counter argument.Isaac

    I was referring to your rhetorical question about the potential consequences of the absence of your vote. Sorry I mentioned it though, be as dramatic as you want.

    Talk of one risking the very existence of democracy strikes me as the more 'dramatic' stance.Isaac

    If you're saying that I've expressed such talk would you mind pointing it out?
  • Yohan
    449

    Voting is simply not practical. In the real world, money and connections is what gives a person worldy power.

    Look around and see which class of people rule in every country. Its always the rich class.

    Directly or or under the table, worldly power is plutocratic. Money rules. Not votes.
  • praxis
    5.2k


    Nevertheless, from what I've read on selectorate theory, the people tend to do best in democracies. Democracies require sufficient supporting institutions (checks on power and whatever) though.
  • Isaac
    8k
    In American elections, we vote for representatives but also many propositions and such. In any case, it seems to me that making a decision about who represents my interests is an act of will.praxis

    I don't deny it, but your argument requires that elections actually require my vote for their success. They may be an act of will but that doesn't prove they need my vote for their success.

    I was referring to your rhetorical question about the potential consequences of the absence of your vote.praxis

    That's your argument though. It's not drama. If elections don't actually suffer from my lack of vote then there's no freeloading is there? I'm not failing in any duty, since the democracy I value is completely unharmed by my failing to vote.

    If you're saying that I've expressed such talk would you mind pointing it out?praxis

    No need. If it's not what you mean then you only need say so.

    You've mentioned both freeloading and neglect. So what did you mean by the use of those terms?
  • praxis
    5.2k


    You bemoan my repeating things and then ask me to repeat things.

    I leave you with the following quote:

    Neglecting an election is a minor instance of freeloading, in my opinion.praxis
  • Isaac
    8k
    Neglecting an election is a minor instance of freeloading, in my opinion.praxis

    The 'minor' is not what I'm disputing. The 'freeloading' is.
  • Isaac
    8k
    You bemoan my repeating things and then ask me to repeat things.praxis

    I was asking you to explain things, not repeat them.
  • Xtrix
    3.7k
    After your endless displays of Trump boot-licking you would have us believe that you’re some sort of anarchist? I suppose it’s good that you recognize your lack of responsibility though, very Trumpian.praxis

    Bullseye. The hypocrisy is astonishing.

    But please, we should all be encouraging the Trump supporters not to vote. It is absolutely moral to force yourself not to vote for fascists, as much as you may love them.
  • Banno
    17.8k
    I agree.

    A protest vote is still a vote. You have to go to a poll and cast a ballot.NOS4A2

    If someone does not turn up to the polling both, you can't know if they were protesting or lazy. In Australia we can keep tabs on protest votes by counting the informal votes.

    If @NOS4A2 does not turn up, his vote is lost. Hence my suggestion that he turn up and draw a cock and balls on the ballot paper, invalidating his vote. If he can start a movement for folk to do this, there will be a clear indication of dissatisfaction.

    If he doesn't turn up at all, then he will be counted as simply indifferent.

    Again, @NOS4A2's ballot should look something like this:

    image-20160704-18321-q3hbkp.jpg?ixlib=rb-1.1.0&q=45&auto=format&w=926&fit=clip
  • Banno
    17.8k
    But if you would fix democracy in the USA there are a couple of other things Australia does that you might borrow.

    Firstly, set up an independent body to oversee your elections. This includes the boundaries of electorates. We have the Australian Electoral Commission.

    Secondly, move to proportional representation.

    And finally, make your presidency apolitical, separating the head of state and the head of government, thus completing the separation of powers. Reduce the presidential powers to mere ceremony. In short, adopt the Westminster system.
  • Banno
    17.8k
    Thanks. Wet weather combined with parochialism.
  • Isaac
    8k
    If someone does not turn up to the polling both, you can't know if they were protesting or lazy.Banno

    This venerates voting beyond anything justified by the system. I can tell in a hundred other ways how many of my fellow citizens are lazy compared to indignant about the system. Why would an election be the only (or even a very good) way to find this out?

    If he can start a movement for folk to do this, there will be a clear indication of dissatisfaction.Banno

    Again, there already is a clear indication of dissatisfaction, an election is merely one way of recording this. It's like claiming that the photograph somehow creates the landscape it is of. An election captures the mood of the electorate on the day. The more people vote, the more accurate that capture will be, but we know from our statistics classes (don't we!) that at some sample size there are diminishing returns in accuracy gained by increasing it. Elections take a very large sample of the population's views, way bigger than is necessary to be statistically sound. What it the pressing need to make it incrementally more accurate by including even more data?

    None of this changes the way people are - that's done by campaigns, protests, collectivisation, grass-roots movements, helping your neighbour, being good to your kids...

    Elections just record where we've got to.
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