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Poll results: Vote for President like you vote for Idol

Voters
29. You may not vote on this poll
  • Yes

    4 13.79%
  • No

    23 79.31%
  • Other

    2 6.90%
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Thread: Vote for Pres. like you vote for pop stars? (AIB Amer. Idol 2006)

  1. #1
    Cyburbian Joe Iliff's avatar
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    Vote for Pres. like you vote for pop stars? (AIB Amer. Idol 2006)

    So, it's been mentioned that more people participate in voting for would-be pop star celebrities on TV than in national elections for president, congress, whatever.

    So, should we amend the constitution to incorporate this voting method? No age limits? Vote as often as you want? Vote from the comfort of your own cellphone? Vote with your ATM card? Weekly debates among the candidates? Results instantly tabulated with no recounts?

    Would we get better results over time, or just sell out to fleeting popularity?
    JOE ILIFF
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    Debt is normal . . . Be weird!
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    "Rarely do we find men who willingly engage in hard, solid thinking. There is an almost universal quest for easy answers and half-baked solutions. Nothing pains some people more than having to think."
    Martin Luther King, Jr.

  2. #2
    moderator in moderation Suburb Repairman's avatar
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    Too many people smart enough to set-up automatic dialers.

    "Oh, that is all well and good, but, voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same way in any country."

    - Herman Göring at the Nuremburg trials (thoughts on democracy)

  3. #3
    Cyburbian Plan-it's avatar
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    I think it would cheapen our civic responsibilities to a desperate point. I am more inclined to set up a system like they have in Australia where you are fined $20 for not voting.
    Satellite City Enabler

  4. #4
          jhboyle's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Plan-it
    I think it would cheapen our civic responsibilities to a desperate point. I am more inclined to set up a system like they have in Australia where you are fined $20 for not voting.
    I'll second that, I heard this on NPR yesterday, and thought it was a great idea

  5. #5
    Cyburbian Plan-it's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by jhboyle
    I'll second that, I heard this on NPR yesterday, and thought it was a great idea
    That is where I heard it also and I love the idea. It is fantastic way to ensure people participate in their own democracy.
    Satellite City Enabler

  6. #6
    Cyburbian michaelskis's avatar
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    I think that this movie (link) is about that.

    Personally, I think it is a phenomenally stupid idea. It is way too easy to manipulate phone records.
    "The alternate domination of one faction over another, sharpened by the spirit of revenge, natural to party dissension, which in different ages and countries has perpetrated the most horrid enormities, is itself a frightful despotism." - George Washington

  7. #7
    Cyburbian otterpop's avatar
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    Voting is really, really easy, at least here. If stopping off at the local polling place before work, at lunch or after work is too much trouble for you, don't vote. Democracy requires at least a minimal amount of effort on your part.
    "I am very good at reading women, but I get into trouble for using the Braille method."

    ~ Otterpop ~

  8. #8

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    Why penalize people for not voting? What if they feel that the political system lacks legitimacy, that none of the candidates or parties reflect their interests? The duty should go the other way-the politicans should have the "duty" to reach out to more people.

    On the Other Hand:

    The other side of me says: given how easy it is to vote, how valuable why should we try to encourage people who are too disinterested, uninformed, or lazy?

    I would say make election day a holiday.

  9. #9
    Cyburbian imaplanner's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by BKM

    I would say make election day a holiday.

    Good idea- but I wonder if this would actually decrease voting. everyone would be at the lake or whatever and not at the polling place.

  10. #10
    Cyburbian Bubba's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by BKM
    I would say make election day a holiday.
    One big problem with that idea is that there's a big difference between establishing a day as an officially recognized government holiday and actually getting private companies to give their employees the day off. Such a holiday would only make it easier for all you lazy gubermit workers to vote.

  11. #11
    Cyburbian Plan-it's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Bubba
    One big problem with that idea is that there's a big difference between establishing a day as an officially recognized government holiday and actually getting private companies to give their employees the day off. Such a holiday would only make it easier for all you lazy gubermit workers to vote.
    Don't forget the banks! They would most likly get the day off also.
    Satellite City Enabler

  12. #12
    Cyburbian Plus
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    Quote Originally posted by BKM
    I would say make election day a holiday.
    Around here primary and general election days are already a holiday.

  13. #13
    Quote Originally posted by Bubba
    One big problem with that idea is .. it .. would only make it easier for all you lazy gubermit workers to vote.
    Them's fightin' words

    The deeper problem is that people can't (or won't) educate themselves about the candidates and the issues with the negative campaigning that is vogue now. This system would simply make it that much easier for lazy voters to access the polls and harm the outcome that much more than they already do. I say leave it as it is.

  14. #14
    Unfrozen Caveman Planner mendelman's avatar
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    Fine all eligible voters that don't vote. It's done in Australia.

    Gets record turn-out.

    Australian electoral system

    Compulsory voting
    Last edited by mendelman; 25 May 2006 at 12:21 PM.
    I'm sorry. Is my bias showing?

    The ends can justify the means.

  15. #15
    Cyburbian Random Traffic Guy's avatar
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    I'll be in support of changes to the voting policies, as long as they include having to write a check for your whole year's taxes on the same day. This witholding thing is the biggest whitewash ever pulled on the American citizenry.

  16. #16
    Cyburbian donk's avatar
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    Too lazy to beat myself up for being to lazy to beat myself up for being too lazy to... well you get the point....

  17. #17
    Cyburbian jordanb's avatar
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    Ballot initiatives is why the West Coast is a loony bin. What an absurd way to run a government.
    Reality does not conform to your ideology.
    http://neighborhoods.chicago.il.us Photographs of Life in the Neighborhoods of Chicago
    http://hafd.org/~jordanb/ Pretentious Weblog.

  18. #18
    For the people who stand in line for hours to vote and get discouraged, are you going to waive the fine?

  19. #19
    Unfrozen Caveman Planner mendelman's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by jaws
    For the people who stand in line for hours to vote and get discouraged, are you going to waive the fine?
    No, just give more places to vote....supply and demand....supply and demand.....
    I'm sorry. Is my bias showing?

    The ends can justify the means.

  20. #20
    Cyburbian Joe Iliff's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by otterpop
    Voting is really, really easy, at least here. If stopping off at the local polling place before work, at lunch or after work is too much trouble for you, don't vote. Democracy requires at least a minimal amount of effort on your part.
    Counterpoint: But, doesn't democracy also depend on participation of at least a critical mass of the electorate? What if the participation percentage keeps shrinking? Weren't there hour long waits to vote in Ohio? Wasn't there talk of extending the voting hours because machine broke down and the lines were too long?

    Counterpoint: American business has made so many things much more convenient than voting, like ATM machines for banking. I think in Norway you can use your cellphone to purchase a soda from a vending machine, no cash, no card). Will our grandchildren who grow up in an era of 24-365 everything accessible from a plastic card, a PIN number, or a cellphone bother to vote by 19th century methods?
    JOE ILIFF
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    Dave Ramsey

    "Rarely do we find men who willingly engage in hard, solid thinking. There is an almost universal quest for easy answers and half-baked solutions. Nothing pains some people more than having to think."
    Martin Luther King, Jr.

  21. #21
    Cyburbian Michele Zone's avatar
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    I really have issues with things like "let's fine people who don't vote". I think I have voted in two elections, both by absentee ballot. My medical disorder was not diagnosed until I was nearly 36, so my inability to accomplish everything I felt I "should" (and that other people also felt I "should") had no explanation. (And there were lots of other reasons I didn't vote -- I know you folks don't really want my entire whiny life story.) If there were a fine for not voting, I would probably end up paying it lots of times and feeling persecuted because of it. I think making it easier, giving more support, etc. has more merit. Honestly, having never physically been to a polling place, I am intimidated by the idea. Do you think anyone cares? Do you think anyone is volunteering to take me, show me around, explain the whole thing? Nope. I'm 40 and everyone knows I'm "intelligent", so, just like in school as a kid, if I don't know how to do something, I am not entitled to an explanation cuz a "smart" person like me is supposed to be able to figure anything out without help. And, frankly, it seems to me there is a certain amount of hostility involved in such attitudes -- like a 'Gotcha' (ie "So maybe you aren't so gosh darn smart afterall, missy").

    I don't have the answer. I know these are real problems -- the lack of voter turnout and general political apathy -- but, generally speaking, becoming increasingly controlling and dictatorial about such things usually leads to a more draconian environment rather than a healthier one.

  22. #22
    Cyburbian imaplanner's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Random Traffic Guy
    This witholding thing is the biggest whitewash ever pulled on the American citizenry.

    I disagree. You can always change your witholding (very easily). I know someone who barely witholds anything and every year always cuts a big fatty check.

    What would happen if witholding was not done to the majority of people who would not be able to pay taxes on that day? The majority of Americans would spend that money and then not be able to pay the tax bill.

  23. #23
    Unfrozen Caveman Planner mendelman's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Michele Zone
    I really have issues with things like "let's fine people who don't vote". I think I have voted in two elections, both by absentee ballot. My medical disorder was not diagnosed until I was nearly 36...I don't have the answer. I know these are real problems -- the lack of voter turnout and general political apathy -- but, generally speaking, becoming increasingly controlling and dictatorial about such things usually leads to a more draconian environment rather than a healthier one.
    Well, there would obviously need ways to explain non-voting, which the Australian system allows for. Complusory voting seems to be similar in nature to complusion of following a zoning code. If you disregard the zoning code, you can be fined.

    I'm not sure it would automatically lead to negative consquences....it's a complusion for the good of the country, much like paying your taxes.
    I'm sorry. Is my bias showing?

    The ends can justify the means.

  24. #24
    Cyburbian Michele Zone's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by mendelman
    Well, there would obviously need ways to explain non-voting, which the Australian system allows for.
    Maybe you missed the part where I noted that my genetic disorder was not diagnosed until I was nearly 36. I began homeschooling in large part because my oldest son was missing 1 to 2 days of school almost every single week. I went to the school every time he was absent and got his make-up work and spoke with the folks in the office about California's absence policies and was assured that, unlike Georgia, California would NOT automatically flunk my child for missing X number of days. Nonetheless, the day that I informed the school that he would no longer be attending and had transferred to a charter school, I came home and found a truancy notice in my mail box. It was another 2 1/2 years before he and I both were diagnosed with this genetic disorder. If I had not had the option to pull my child from school and if, instead, they had begin upping the ante and coming up with harsher and harsher methods to try to force him to show up, things would have simply gotten uglier and uglier because I did not yet have an explanation for why my child was constantly ill -- yet was not so ill that he needed antibiotics. If it had gone to court, I would have had no defense. He was unable to "perform" and no amount of insisting that he do so was going to change that change. What did change that was removing him from the situation and working on helping him get well and, eventually, discovering the underlying cause. But I had to nearly die to get the diagnosis. Before that, all doctors treated me like a neurotic hypochondriac. Nor would it have done much good if they had taken me seriously: The diagnosis I have did not exist until about 4 year before I got it. Before that, "mild cystic fibrosis" was not a diagnosis you could have. I and my son score a 41 on the sweat chloride. Historically, under a 40 was "normal" and above an 80 was "cystic fibrosis" and 40 to 80 was an undefined zone. Now that undefined zone is known to be a milder form of CF.

    So, most of my life, I could NOT come up with a satisfactory explanation for my failures nor could I stop failing because I was not able to address the underlying cause. Now I can -- but it still requires me to essentially spit in my doctor's face and defy his expectations that "people like you don't get well". I am not looking for pity nor charity. But people like me need to be cut some slack -- and there are more "people like me" than most folks realize. With child mortality rates falling, more people with mild but unidentified disorders are surviving to adulthood. We can be productive people but we often cannot "color within the lines" if someone else is drawing those lines -- especially if our shortcomings are chalked up to "laziness" or "stubbornness" or "apathy" and the "solution" is to become yet more rigid. I need additional flexibility to make my life work and fail even more when faced with increased rigidity in the expectations placed upon me.

    I'm not lazy. Nor am I stupid. Nor am I apathetic. I just was never genuinely healthy in life until very recently. And it was not "obvious" from looking at me.

  25. #25

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    Again: why the punitive "punish the nonvoters."

    Maybe you don't want to vote as the choices are too bad. Why should some politician decide to punish you because you refuse to whitewash the choice between pablum and terror by "voting." Voting is not the be all and end all of existance. If the political system is failing to the point a significant plurality does not choose to vote, you need to reform the system, not start fining people. The system is broke, not the voter.

    I'm amazed at how quickly people are ready to start giving up their rights or punishing other people. And, choosing not to vote is absolutely a right. (Note; I almost always have voted, so I'm not excusing lack of participation by myself).

    I'll tell you what, if the 2008 choice is between Hillary or Joseph Biden or some other Squirrel DLC Nonentity and a scary Republican Theocrat/Warmonger like John Mccain, you bet that I will not be voting for that race.

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