Democracy…

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The poster is from Pinterest, unfortunately I don’t know who to thank.

I live in a democracy…we recently had an election and due to the preferencing system in the vote (I.e. each party or person can trade preferences with one another to improve their numbers after the primary vote is counted) there are several people heading to the capital to make decisions on our behalf.

The disturbing part is that at least one of them appears to have so little education that I doubt he will understand most of what he needs to vote on. Others represent such minority views that the old colonial way of thinking is in danger of infecting the decision making. How do these people end up being elected? It’s something of a cross between compulsory voting where people are forced to vote without checking they understand it, and the preference system that allows parties to “share” votes (in a manner of speaking).

The system is clearly flawed, and I hope that the new politicians who are clueless realise it and work hard to make up for their lack of knowledge. I also think it means next election there will be even more parties from minor ideologies running…after all now some have proved they can run with the big parties.

While its a concern that people who know little or nothing about issues will now be involved in determining policy on those issues, it’s still not all bad. How amazing that anyone, literate or not, can be voted in to represent the people! How amazing that barriers to participation at the Senate level are so low! Yes, the system is flawed and we will likely have a few bad policies out of it… But, this is democracy as rarely seen in the world.

And democracy is so much better than dictatorships, communism and other non-representative forms of government. I’m thankful that amidst the craziness of the elections we had, I live in a democracy – by the people, for the people.

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