Not enough or too many?

Some people are worried that not enough people voted, others worry that too many did.

I wouldn’t go so far as Lindsay Perigo who wants to protect freedom from democracy and makes a call to decretinise the vote:

. . . “When, pre-election, I saw pubescent zombies being interviewed about why they intended not to vote, I was simultaneously relieved that they wouldn’t be adding to the Labour or Green tally … and aghast that more energetic cretinswouldbe.

“I call upon the Justice and Electoral Committee to address the issue of too many airheads voting and thus boosting Labour’s and the Greens’ representation artificially. Only humans should be allowed to vote—and only humans who pass literacy tests, linguistic and political.

“Longterm, individual rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness must be enshrined as absolute in a constitution—and thus placed beyond the grasp of half-wits. Freedom must be protected from democracy.

“Disenfranchising cretins, then de-cretinising the franchise: this ought to be a priority for any new freedom party such as is now being widely mooted to emerge from the ruins of ACT,” Perigo concludes.

But when I read Kerre Woodham’s column vote for Winston and you get other NZ First members? Really? yesterday, I could understand where Perigo was coming from:

 . . . The number of people who called to say they didn’t realise that voting for Winston would mean other people would get in has been teeth-grindingly extraordinary.

“Sooooo,” I’ve been asking, “when you ticked New Zealand First as your party of choice, what did you want to happen?”

“I just wanted Winston to get in to keep the Government honest,” they reply.

“And what about the other members of New Zealand First? Did you know who was on the party list?”

“No,” they replied as one. “We just thought we’d be getting Winston.”

“I was very surprised to see Andrew Williams get in,” one exclaimed. “What’s he doing there?” she asked.

I’m sure there are New Zealand First voters who knew exactly what they were doing and what they would be getting but an alarming number think of New Zealand First as a one-man, Winston Peters band.

We’ve had MMP for 15 years and this was the seventh election to use it yet people still don’t understand how it works.

I’m loathe to add anything to an already over crowded curriculum but there is a case for civics to be taught in school.

I suspect most of those who voted for New Zealand First would be far too old to benefit from the lessons, but maybe their grandchildren or great-grandchildren would learn enough to stop them repeating the mistakes of their elders.

4 Responses to Not enough or too many?

  1. Neil says:

    I must say that the thought of Richard Prosser so close to the levers of power frightens me. So also Andrew Williams.
    What stuns me is the common comment from NZF voters is “It keeps the other bastards honest” But who monitors Winston’s antics ?
    People who are informed cringe at that thought with Winston’s gyrations with reality. I was formerly a councillor in a council where a mayor who shouldn’t have been a mayor operated in that kind of situation – badly. That mayor wouldn’t attend budget workshops,when the agreed compromise was made- that person would vote against the resolution just to show how independent “it” was.
    That person knew the resolution would go through so show boating was the name of the game. Same with Winston First.It staggers me to see the NZF list which seems to contain angry people who have no clear programme other than being obstructionist or self seeking publicity seekers
    I agree in some way with Perigo’s comment that many of our voters have no idea what they are doing. The USA has low voting numbers, probably a good thing with the motivated and informed getting out to vote. A good indictment of compulsory voting a la Australia


  2. robertguyton says:

    ” . . . The number of people who called to say they didn’t realise that voting for Key would mean other people would get in has been teeth-grindingly extraordinary”

    Satire, it’s funny, eh!


  3. Cadwallader says:

    Voting ought never be compulsory. Not voting is a vote in itself if it is a conscious decision.
    I wonder whether voters ought be subject to the restraints of company directors who are required to disclose personal interests before voting on company transactions? On this basis voters could be classified as to whether they derive benefits from the state…ie civil servants, beneficaries, those receiving WFF etc…alternatively, a maximum voting age, being the date from which one becomes a national super-annuitant would be revelatory. I am not advocating any of this, just pondering….


  4. Ace says:

    Neil and Robert, you sound very bitter and insecured. There was a large number of young voters who voted for NZ First, because they have taken the time to read and understand the NZ First policies and what it stands for to represent.
    Winston is a great politician, and you need to accept that he is well admired by many, and fights for the right of those people he represents, not the money traders or greedy inconsiderate people that you support.
    Get over it…. the country is in turmoil and we owe it ourselves to get it right.


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