Crawl Across the Ocean

Saturday, February 17, 2007

Electoral Reform

The NDP is planning to introduce a motion on electoral reform on Monday. Robert and Idealistic Pragmatist have some more details and ideas on how you can work to make Proportional Representation a reality.

I'm not sure there's much left for to say on the topic that I haven't said already, but maybe an index of my past posts would be useful (for me anyway, to minimize repetition).

To begin, here is arguably my most complete post on electoral reform. Central point is an explanation of the tension between representing parties and representing areas. The current system fails by only doing one (representing areas).

The rest is in reverse chronological order (some of these are links to my STV blog which I set up for the B.C. referendum):

The idiocy of first-past-the-post is on display for all the world to see.

I note that gerrymandering is harder when you have PR.

I suggest fomenting a right-wing schism in the Conservative party to take advantage of our dysfunctional electoral system.

I discuss supermajority requirements in the context of an independence vote in Montenegro where 55% was the threshold as compared to electoral reform where the bar was set at 60% in B.C.

A pathetic editorial in the Star causes me to wonder why newspapers are so scared of electoral change. I know my Mom thinks it is because they are scared of having too complicated for their little minds to comprehend, but I think there must be more to it than that. Don't know what, though.

I heartlessly mock people who say that B.C. 'rejected' electoral reform.

I write a fairly mediocre post on the topic of wasted votes.

PEI votes against change (shocking!)

I urge PEIslanders to vote yes for reform.

I talk about some of the shenanigans in PEI leading up their vote on electoral reform and discuss the topic of supermajorities.

Jeffrey Simpson and I write about minority governments and the ability to make hard decisions.

Conservative MP Scott Reid talks a good game on electoral reform. Has he said anything on the topic since his party took power?

B.C. announces STV II: Judgement Day for the next election in 2009

With B.C.'s referendum over, I take out some frustration on the MMP zealots who helped defeat electoral reform in B.C.

With 20-20 hindsight, I criticize the setting of a 60% threshold for a PR vote to pass. How fitting that the first past the post system wins with a minority of the vote.

Probably my longest post over. In which I rebut a laundry list of anti-STV arguments.

A Green Party senator from Australia explains how when less popular parties can win seats, more issues that the big parties don't want to talk about can be raised during the campaign.

I point out the condescension of those who argue against reform because while they understand the proposed system, they are worried about 'Average Joe' who doesn't share their powers of understanding.

I talk about the original sin of electoral systems which is that the power to change the system is in the hands of those who benefit most from the current system, and also mention how the Conservative's abandoned the old Reform ideas on electoral reform as they got closer to their precious (majority).

I round-up media coverage of the reform campaign in BC

I recap a public forum on STV, and explain how the flexibility of STV in adapting to meet the wishes of the electorate provides rhetorical fodder for opponents of STV.

I think about how the electoral system affects the election of women.

I compile a long list of links related to STV and the BC referendum.

A series of 3 posts on STV to kick off my STV blog: Why are we voting on STV,What is STV, Why Vote for STV

I get about as cranky as I ever get on the blog, in this case with Norman Spector's continued nonsense.

I attend a meeting on STV and link to my newly created (at the time) STV blog.

I criticize Norman Spector for a typically weak article on electoral reform.

I link to a good article on STV and to a flash animation on how STV works.

Jeffrey Simpson writes about electoral reform and I discuss whether democracy is simply a means or of it is an end in itself. That is, is it better to have some undemocratic elements in the system (e.g. artificial majority governments) if this leads to some positive outcome.

I criticize at length an incoherent article on electoral reform by Richard Gwyn.

A letter I wrote to Ian Urquhart after one of his typically poor columns on the topic.

A post which combined trans-fats, with early news on Ontario's citizen's assembly with Dion declaring that 'Canada will be champion of Kyoto' (note: this post is from over two years back)

The Liberals stalled out electoral reform when they were in power last time.


  • One of the things I most look forward to about the upcoming repeat of the B.C. electoral reform campaign is your posts on the issue.

    By Blogger Idealistic Pragmatist, at 7:07 AM  

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