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Cassandra


Cassandra

Froggie ... Ribbit !!!
Location: Back in Paris... for now !

Total posts: 4224
Posted:I don't really want to discuss politics per se but just thought I should tell you how I feel about what is going on in my country.
you probably heard of the fact that Le Pen reached 2nd round of the presidential elections. (Le Pen is the extreme right winger / neo nazi in France).
I still cannott beleive it ...

Over 30 % did not vote because they were tired / on vacation and thought they'd only vote on the second round...

But now we have the choice between right wingers and neo nazis ..

I am ashamed of my country, not giving up or anything, just ashamed..;

And I wanted to say that voting to me is a duty. Only sad thing is that in France they do not count blank vote as the expression of an opinion... I wish they did. But in eth meantime anyway... I feel that if you want to take part to the life of your country you have to vote...

I know some of you might disagree and would be interested in hearing your point of views...

shine on
Cassandra


"I want brown bread... no, that is diesel oil..."
"So I was raised in Europe, where History comes from ..."
"NON !!! La Plume de mon oncle n est pas Bingibangibungi !!!"

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Drakien


member
Location: Coventry / High Wycombe, Engla...

Total posts: 49
Posted:I think it was interesting that 70% of the electorate voting is considered tremendously low for France, but in Britain 75% is about the average.

Politics in France always seemed to me (and bearing in mind that my uninformed opion is made up almost entirely of hearsay and conjecture - the two *best* ingrediants) to be much more...

...*involved* than in Britian.

Still, it's good to see everyone protesting about it after its happened. Pity Monsieur Chirac is refusing to engage Le Pen in debates. Doesn't put across a very encouraging standpoint for himself.

J


Posh ravers wear ties.

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Spiral


Spiral

Oolering Man
Location: Farnborough, Hampshire

Total posts: 729
Posted:All the times I have been able to vote, I never have. I ussually spoil my ballot card by writing 'none of the above' in big sparkly pen all over the card. My biggest problem is that we are told we live in a democracy, whilst I believe we really live in an elected dictatorship. And theres some really stupid stuff going on. I'm a mature student eho has just started university, and we've all just recieved our polling cards. To try and encourage us to vote, there was a big black double decker bus outside the student union the other day playing drum n bass. What the hell is all that about? it was trying to get the message across that if you didn't vote you were a puppet or something. I couldn't work that one out at all. Ah well, best quiet down now before I start to have a rant. Well thats my humble opinion. They should put a 'none of the above' or 'no confidence' option on the card or something.

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fluffy napalm fairy


fluffy napalm fairy

Carpal \'Tunnel
Location: Brum / Dorset / Fairy Land

Total posts: 3638
Posted:quote: 70% of the electorate voting is considered tremendously low for France, but in Britain 75% is about the average Wow. Makes you think.

When will they take the hint? *sigh* Many people I know don't vote for the reason Spiral mentioned - not voting is a protest against the system. And Cass - they will never see what they don't want to. I def. think there should be a no confidence thingy - Maybe it would make them think. Maybe that's just wishful thinking though......hmmm.


Geologists do it in the dirt................ spank

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Cassandra


Cassandra

Froggie ... Ribbit !!!
Location: Back in Paris... for now !

Total posts: 4224
Posted:I totally agree with the fact that sometimes when you are about to vote it is like chosing between bad and worst... his is why I think they should consider the possibility of protest vote etc ...

HOWEVER, voting to me is a duty and if you don't vote I don't quite see how you can justify wanting to have the right to speak afterwards...
Not voting can be a crime ... If next monday I wake up in a country run by a nazi, I'll consider those who did not vote for CHirac like criminals. I know it sounds awfull, but it is true... And trust me, voting for a lier, cheater, disgusting man like CHirac does not make me jump up and down with pleasure and excitement... but at least we are within the frame of democracy...

About Chirac not wanting to debate with Le Pen, I would say that he has probably made the best choice. he is less of a good speaker than Le Pen and would have probably lost more votes if he faced Le Pen ...

But I guess that is the question about Democracy .. does too much democracy kill democracy ?

You say you are for the protest against Le Pen ... but in a way it is not democratical since it does not respect the choice of 20% of our population...

What are the limits of a democracy ???


"I want brown bread... no, that is diesel oil..."
"So I was raised in Europe, where History comes from ..."
"NON !!! La Plume de mon oncle n est pas Bingibangibungi !!!"

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Dom
BRONZE Member since Dec 2001

Dom

Carpal \'Tunnel
Location: Bristol, UK

Total posts: 3009
Posted:Last night I went to see the Mark Thomas Product being filmed. Mark does a current affairs type program on TV that highlights issues normally overlooked, like MP conflicts of interest, legal loopholes, pathetic laws, etc... For instance for research into this show he's spent the last week setting himself up as an arms dealer and managed to arrange shipments of German and UK produced machine guns from Germany and the UK to Algeria and Zimbabwe, which currently has EU sanctions against it!

Afterwards we were discussing politics and all of my friends felt that no political party represents our views. The people that represent our views are people like Mark Thomas who are generally hated my politicians, although they're now getting heard due to the influence they now have. These people have to get into the system to change it, and that's the hard part because politics is dominated and controlled by the current politicans who chose who they listen to.

Most politicians fail to do anything they promise to do during election time because they're too frightened to change the status quo. And most MPs are also businessmen, so do more for businesses than for people.

So, when they wonder why only 40-60% of people turn out to vote I wonder why they can't see the plain fact: People are not happy with politics. There's a bunch of men in suits strolling about with very similar policies involved in a political process that seems to spend more time putting other people down than working together for a common good, the good of the people in the country, and the people of the world.

So, when the average voter is so disenfranchised with the system they stop voting. Then the only people that vote are the people passionate about what they believe in, and this includes a lot of extremists who gain votes by hooking people with a couple of emotive issues. The result: Le Pen.

Thankfully the people of France took to the streets and made their voices heard. That's democracy, the right to shout out against what you believe is wrong. But again often those that shout loudest and get action are the most passionate and extremist. The French now have the choice between a crook and a fascist. People who don't like Chirac will vote for him because Le Pen is worst.

Is this how we should all vote. Personally I've always believe that to not vote is a waste, but I really can't bring myself to vote for any of these politicians as only a couple of them sound truthful to me, and these are generally considered to be the 'rebels' within their parties. There's no small, independent parties in the UK I can support.

Now I tend to vote with my feet and my voice. I'm attending more marches and protests, but these are rarely heard. It's so fustrating! A couple of hundred people will cause trouble on Wednesday for May Day, and it's already being hyped by the news and the message is lost. Anarchists now means 'violent thugs' to most people when that's not it's true meaning. But when tens of thousands march peacefully against the bombing of Afghanistan there is nothing on the news, no government response. Nothing.

The Unibomber Manifesto puts it like this: "In order to get our message before the public with some chance of making a lasting impression, we've had to kill people."

That cold, that chilling. But true. I can talk, spread the word, try to make my voice heard, by I now have to resort to direct non-violent action. Where next if my voice isn't heard? How can I get my voice heard by the people that make the decisions? How can I make the decisions?

I still have more questions than answers. Thanks for reading another of my ramblings. It's Monday, I've hardly slept.


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Dom
BRONZE Member since Dec 2001

Dom

Carpal \'Tunnel
Location: Bristol, UK

Total posts: 3009
Posted:Oh God, that really was very, very long. Who was silly enough to read it all?

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Cassandra


Cassandra

Froggie ... Ribbit !!!
Location: Back in Paris... for now !

Total posts: 4224
Posted:me ...

I agree with you, Dom...

I saw a woman on TV yesterday who was crying cause she has to vote for Chirac next week end and she never thought she'd have to do that ...
I feel quite the same...

It is easier to be honest and not corrupted when you are out of the system... once you enter it with a consistant amount of people who support you (ie when you represent ... say ... at least 1% of the votes) then that is when things get hard ... an when you start ruling a country ... that is when it becomes ... impossible ?

I've lost oh so many of my illusions as I was growing up ...

I remember accompanying friends in Mexico for a protest march against the power there. I was there as a spectator, not an actor and I remember feeling how involved the people were...
I had never felt that in France until last week...

people do not really learn from history, people forget and very rarely protest aginst things that don't touch them personnaly on an every day basis... that's the way it is... only when you threaten to take away some of their freedom ... or once you have done so ... do they start to react .

am I becoming bitter ????


"I want brown bread... no, that is diesel oil..."
"So I was raised in Europe, where History comes from ..."
"NON !!! La Plume de mon oncle n est pas Bingibangibungi !!!"

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Kyrian


Dreamer
Location: York, England

Total posts: 4308
Posted:70% is low.....

eee gods. i don't think America ever hits 50%. I could be wrong, but i don't think it does. A lot of people don't even register to vote, let alone show up. And look at the morons. Last election there was almost no significant differnece between teh canidates, altho the enviromentalist at least possiblities with Gore made him a slightly better choice, IMO... we can't even have a third party canidate... In ... the one third party canidate that got around this block, Jesse Vetura, governor of Minnesota, is actually considered pretty decent... but his state has enacted laws taht will make it impossible for any canidate to do what he did again... even tho he ended up with the majority vote... and then there was the whole presidential race, and wtf happened there.... wow, i'm sorry, i'm ranting.

and about the protests..... there was a big one in Washington recently, and the govt and newspapers barely acknowledged it
over 50,000 people marching against teh war on afgahistan, and they don't exist....!!!!!!!

i've been to marches on washinton for otehr things... coulnd't get to this most recnt one....

ok, sorry, still ranting.

i'll quit.

and i am truly sorry cass, about ur election.

why doesn't democracy work? dahhhhhhhhh.


Keep your dream alive
Dreamin is still how the strong survive

Shalom VeAhavah

New Hampshire has a point....

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Kyrian


Dreamer
Location: York, England

Total posts: 4308
Posted:And if you want to be really disturbed, our biggest third party canidate last election, Ralph Nader, was not only denied the right to participate in any debates for any reason, but also denied the right to be a civilian spectator at the debates, !!!!!!

Keep your dream alive
Dreamin is still how the strong survive

Shalom VeAhavah

New Hampshire has a point....

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BEZERKER


BEZERKER

enthusiast


Total posts: 237
Posted:My 2 cents....

In Australia we use a preference system where if a party gets no 1st preferences but a majority of the 2nd preferences they will win. We're based on the Westminster system which revolves around a 2 party system.

My aunt is a member of one of the parties in Queensland. It' very interesting to here her talk about it. She started off very idealistic, listening to her local community and pushing issues people wanted pushed. As she gained popularity and won her first election the party then started to push a little on getting her to concur with the party's policies. Then they started offering her benefits for agreeing on certain issues, voting certain ways to pass bills and that sort of thing. She does back down on most of the big issues because she would simply be squashed and lose any support and therefore (as certain areas are 'stronger' for some parties) she wouldn't even be in there anymore. She figures conceding on some issues and still being in a position to do some good is better than becoming disillusioned and quitting. I admire her for that.

But the farce that is politics leaves me so disjointed from anything they do. As far as I'm concerned they do what they do, pass laws that benefit themselves and those who sit in the background whilst I go on living my life and keeping my family afloat. As you can guess, I don't vote. Never have. Never will. There is absolutely no way that any other party will ever be voted in aside from the 2 major parties and that, to me, is not democracy at work. That is an illusion of choice where there isn't one.

Whilst I'm not as active as Dom (thank god people like you really get involved) I certainly believe his kind of activism will have more of an effect than any perception of 'voting power'.

I'd say more but I'm starting to rant. I love that you feel the way you do Cassandra, it's so like you (from what I know of you) but I can't be bothered wasting my time with an act (voting) that I know is futile. Living in western society is already enough


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NYC


NYC

NYC
Location: NYC, NY, USA

Total posts: 9232
Posted:Bahhh! I love America! I just did some quick research.

The last presidential election saw only a 51% voter turnout.

130 Million Americans saw the last Superbowl (Football championship).
105 Million Americans voted in the last presidential election.

You gotta love good ol' American apathy. In fact the Highest ever voter turnout was in 1960 of 62.8%. Clearly us Americans have...

OH SH*T I'M MISSING THE LAKERS GAME!!! Gotta run!


Well, shall we go?
Yes, let's go.
[They do not move.]

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Raymund Phule (Fireproof)


Raymund Phule (Fireproof)

Enter a "Title" here:
Location: San Diego California

Total posts: 2905
Posted:My vote doesnt count, or atleast thats what alot of people think. It is a tragidy none the less, I hope that all goes well for you and your country.

Some Jarhead last night: "this dumb a$$ thinks hes fireproof"

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Spiral


Spiral

Oolering Man
Location: Farnborough, Hampshire

Total posts: 729
Posted:just a point of interest, more people voted for pop star than in the last general election. (or has someone allready said that?)

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Cassandra


Cassandra

Froggie ... Ribbit !!!
Location: Back in Paris... for now !

Total posts: 4224
Posted:yeah I thought the exact same thing last night when I saw people had to vote for Loft Story (the French Big Brother) and somehow I felt that everyone was so much more excited by those votes then excited by the presidential elections a week ago... then you see what happened !!!

only when it is too late do people realize what they did ...
hope it is not too late ...

worried little French frog


"I want brown bread... no, that is diesel oil..."
"So I was raised in Europe, where History comes from ..."
"NON !!! La Plume de mon oncle n est pas Bingibangibungi !!!"

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Dom
BRONZE Member since Dec 2001

Dom

Carpal \'Tunnel
Location: Bristol, UK

Total posts: 3009
Posted:I think the point is that the people in Loft Story and Pop Stars are 'ordinary' people that the general public can relate to and so take an interest in. Personally I can't relate to politicians that much, don't know anyone that can.

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Cassandra


Cassandra

Froggie ... Ribbit !!!
Location: Back in Paris... for now !

Total posts: 4224
Posted:Can everyone keep their fingers crossed for us next sunday ... it is the second and final round ...
Magic won't really help, voting will ...
but still ... send us good vibes , please

shine on
Cassandra


"I want brown bread... no, that is diesel oil..."
"So I was raised in Europe, where History comes from ..."
"NON !!! La Plume de mon oncle n est pas Bingibangibungi !!!"

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Kyrian


Dreamer
Location: York, England

Total posts: 4308
Posted:yeah, le pen came up in our contemrporary issues class the oterh day....

good luck france!

*hug to cass*


Keep your dream alive
Dreamin is still how the strong survive

Shalom VeAhavah

New Hampshire has a point....

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Cassandra


Cassandra

Froggie ... Ribbit !!!
Location: Back in Paris... for now !

Total posts: 4224
Posted:For those interested, Le Pen lost... 82 % voted against him...
I can breathe again ...

Shine on
Cassandra


"I want brown bread... no, that is diesel oil..."
"So I was raised in Europe, where History comes from ..."
"NON !!! La Plume de mon oncle n est pas Bingibangibungi !!!"

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Simos


enthusiast
Location: London, UK

Total posts: 382
Posted:Well, I'm glad all went well for France in the end Cass...

Reading all the above posts about voting indifference, I was just thinking...

...in the next elections, they should lock all the candidates away in a nice house, ala Big Brother style, and leave them there for a month or so, with non-stop TV coverage... then people could vote as they do for Big Brother and the rest! Anyone else thinks this is a good idea?

...and they could add a few good-looking people in the house too, just to get people to watch it! (Damn I'm good, I have it all figured out!!!)

Simos


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Kyrian


Dreamer
Location: York, England

Total posts: 4308
Posted:lol Simos, that's almost better tahn any of our current ways.....


Keep your dream alive
Dreamin is still how the strong survive

Shalom VeAhavah

New Hampshire has a point....

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