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Rouge DragonBRONZE Member
Insert Champagne Here
13,215 posts
Location: without class distinction, Australia

In light of all the talk about the US election, I feel that I would like to put forward an idea I had after the Australian election.

Over here, to get into university, we make a list of preferences for our courses in September. In December, we receive our result for our final year of high school. We then have a "change of preference week" where we can change our university preferences in case our result was better/worse than what he hoped for.

Now I would like to see this incorproated into politics.

Put in your preferences (now this might now work in America. We have preferential voting here)
get the result.
see how that result goes for a few months.
If you dont like the result - change your preferences!
If you do like the result - stick with what you have!

That way, there can be no "I voted for Bush, but I regret it". or "if only I had known"

This not only allows you to review your decision, but it will also ensure that there are none of those broken promises that always happen after elections!
i would have changed ***** to phallus, and claire to petey Petey

Rougie: but that's what I'm doing here
Arnwyn: what letting me adjust myself in your room?..don't you dare quote that on HoP...

1,591 posts
Location: Nova Scotia, Canada.

it would work I suppose, but you might have to extend the term by a year to deal with it all.

_Clare_BRONZE Member
Still wiggling
5,967 posts
Location: Belfast, Northern Ireland (UK)

Hmmm, could take a while and also cost a fortune...

I used to know much more about political systems (goddam, have to stop smoking biggrin) but without the specifics, I would like to see some dramatic changes to the American electoral system. I think the British one is probably marginally better (it's never going to be perfect). And as for Northern Ireland - lol, well, we'll just keep that little joke-of-an-electoral-system out of it.

Anyways, I would delegate more power to the individual states over the election. And why on earth do we expect such a huge country to return it's decision within a matter of hours?! It leads to mistakes.

I would like to see less power lying with the President. As has been evidenced this year, if you choose the wrong man, he more-or-less has carte blanche over the world for four years! Getting to the other side smile

MiGGOLD Member
Self-Flagellation Expert
3,415 posts
Location: Bogged at CG, Australia

yeah. america should really have a group of people, odd numbered, that take on the role of president. any and all decisions have to be agreed to by a majority. ooh, and even better, dont vote. just randomly pick one person from each state. they get 3 years paid leave from work, and are guaranteed the same job when they get back. no more 'politicans are a different group' or anything. and they are all getting paid what they would have been anyway. "beg beg grovel beg grovel" "master" --FSA "There was an arse there, i couldn't help myself" --Rougie

DioHoP Mechanical Engineer
729 posts
Location: OK, USA

Written by: MiG

yeah. america should really have a group of people, odd numbered, that take on the role of president. any and all decisions have to be agreed to by a majority.

We have that already, just not as explicitly as you stated.

Here we have the President (head of the Executive branch of gov't), the House of Representatives (eah one representing their chosen area based on population) and the Senate (two Senators from each of the 50 states).

The President himself isn't allowed to write laws, that responsibility belongs to the Legislative branch, and before he even gets to put his stamp of approval (or disapproval) on a bill that passes his desk, it has to be first approved by both the House and the Senate.

As for whether a President gets put through a "review" process or not, that has its own set of rules to follow. Impeachment is what the House can perform as a review if the President's ability to govern is ever called into question to such a degree he might not be fit for office. On a smaller, more local level, public petition can "recall" an elected official - that's why we have Arnold Schwarzenegger instead of Gray Davis as governor of California.

Re: Less power to the President
We're starting to see now, that the states are making their own decisions regarding issues and taking that out of the hands of the President. One such example is state funding of stem cell research despite a federal ban.

Our political system has an elaborate system of checks and balances that keep too much from going on without any sort of limit or review. Elections are speedy because the only actual counting is done at the precinct level, and then reported to the overall tally when the polls close.

Hope that helps to describe a few things ubbrollsmile What hits the fan is not evenly distributed.

MiGGOLD Member
Self-Flagellation Expert
3,415 posts
Location: Bogged at CG, Australia

hm, sounds a lot like ours, with a few differences. did you know that australians dont actually have any explicit rights? no, seriously, there is nowhere in anything that says 'you have a right to free speech' in australia. its all implied stuff.

would it be cool if the person that got second was vice president? what about the country picks two people, a la normal elections, but they get 49% control each, and someone else gets the other two, so if they dont like a decision they can overrule it. and it would be someone completely independent, too. like a baker. from sweden.

but i like the way you have to vote in australia. none of the 'i dont know who to choose, so i wont pick either', but we have lots of independents and other parties and such. i dont think i like the preferences dohiggedy tho.

seriously, i think the leader of a country should be someone picked completely at random, like jury duty (here, anyway, not sure how anywhere else does it). sure, have advisors, whose job is to guide, but that person has all the rights and priveleges and whatevers for their term, then they lose it all and go back to what they had afterward.

speaking of such (kinda), what do ex-presidents get in the way of pension etc? does bill clinton have to work for a living now, or is he set for life? "beg beg grovel beg grovel" "master" --FSA "There was an arse there, i couldn't help myself" --Rougie

MikeGinnyGOLD Member
HOP Mad Doctor
13,922 posts
Location: San Francisco, CA, USA

The idea of an involuntary governmental body comprised of citizens is not a new idea. Various political scientists have come up with this idea. However, the Founding Fathers of the United States knew about a few dirty secrets:

1) It takes very educated and intelligent people to run a government.
2) The majority of people are neither of the above.

For this reason, they decided on a representative form of government in which the People would elect representatives to serve as their proxies in the process of governing the country. Although anyone could run in theory, the Founding Fathers trusted that the big test would be that the candidate would have to be functional enough to be able to assemble a campaign and get elected. This was no small task then and it is no smaller now.

It is also for this reason that they were very clear that the People should not be in the business of governing themselves.

So at first a compulsory government sounds like a great idea because the people doing the governing are citizens themselves and they aren't in the business of getting re-elected.

But now think about it a bit more: first, there are people who are absolutely indispensible and would not be fit for a compulsory government position: for example, consider a pediatric nephrologist in Michigan (of which there are 5). Removing 20% of the pediatric nephrologists in Michigan would not be good and these people would likely need to be exempted from compulsory service. So the sort of person who tends to be indispensible is going to be very intelligent, meaning that less educated and intelligent people will be disproportionately represented on such a council. And in a country where less than 30% of people have a Bachelor's degree, that's not good. Second, what happens when, by sheer random chance, 5 of the 7 (say) on the council happen to be of the same general political leanings of John Ashcroft? Or if a Neo-Nazi winds up on the council? Or someone with a serious mental illness?

That's why compulsory governments haven't ever caught on.

Now, what would be interesting is the idea of an election where you get to vote for, say, three candidates and then they run through an "instant-runoff" system to pick the winner. -Mike
Certified Mad Doctor and HoP High Priest of Nutella

A buckuht n a hooze! -Valura