Does Mandatory Voting have a Future in Canada?


 It seems that a strategic advantage of the Conservative Party is its ability to exploit low voter turn-out thereby winning 162 seats leaving the Liberals at distant a third, with 37 seats. Ergo, the solution to this grave injustice that's been done to Canada's natural governing party is to make voting mandatory for all citizens.

 

It's not official yet, but the idea is being floated around. By further violating your rights, the Liberals hope to secure a majority government and prevent the Conservatives from ever winning again.

 

Harper's Conservatives have been accused of bringing "U.S.-style" campaign tactics and negative attack ads to Canada. Analyst draw conclusions based on low voter turnout, elector alienation and Harper's winnings starting in 2005. They also highlight how if mandatory voting were adopted today, the party to lose most from it would be the federal Conservative Party.

 

However this negates an important factor: political parties act as springboards to power. There are numerous incentives for the Conservative Party to adapt to a mandatory voting system. If the Liberals win in 2015 and adopt a mandatory voting system, all this will have done is further violated the rights of the tax victims while ensuring a decade of power for the Grits. At which, they will be thrown out by the new and improved Conservatives.

 

Notice the pattern? Before Harper it was the Chretien/Martin Liberals. They beat the old Progressive Conservative Party by leaving them (the PC's) at 2 seats. But before that there was Mulroney and he was just rearranging the damage done by Pierre Elliot Trudeau.

 

Mandatory voting will not stop this process. Just ask the Australians. They've had this system in place since 1924. Are their politicians any better? Are they any more free? Do their cops look less militarized? Did they somehow escape the central banking family?

 

Compulsory voting only makes things worse. It's not enough for the parasites to tax you, they want you to show up at a certain place at a certain time to celebrate your enslavement by choosing parasite A or parasite B.

 

In places with compulsory voting, a new class of citizenry arise: the non-voter. Non-voters face difficulties getting jobs in the state sector, they are fined for not voting and face imprisonment for refusing to pay the fines. Not voting makes it difficult to obtain a passport or a driver's license if you're Greek. In Peru, a stamped voting card is needed to obtain some consumer goods.

 

There may be a meme in play here. If the Liberals go forward on this idea, it will be sold convincingly. People already believe they live in democracies with the rule of law. Voluntary voting can be sold as a contradiction in terms. We're required to pay taxes, use the same services. Clearly, not-voting causes a demographic disproportion that allows special interests to conquer and thus disturb the “social contract.”

 

That's how the Conservatives formed majority government, right? Apathetic non-voters that pay taxes and use "public" goods but didn't bother voting. Hence, Harper used the disproportionate weight of his loyal base to form a majority government even though more people voted against him. Mandatory voting is supposed to fix this democratic glitch.

 

This glitch may be applied to global governance itself. It may be a stepping-stone to further global integration of nation-states into a one-world government.

 

Of course the glitch is democracy itself, particularly in the statist form. In a democracy, it is said, the act of voting makes government responsible to the people and thus state actions are truly voluntary vis-a-vis the voters. This is a major fallacy that needs little refute. Scarcely anybody believes that one's representatives are truly acting in accordance with ones wants and needs. This is technically impossible, as no single representative could conform to the wishes of all his or her constituents. And what if less than a majority is represented by a majority government (as in the case now and for most of Canada's majority governments)?

 

Political theorist and constitutional lawyer, Lysander Spooner had an interesting insight into democratic states when he wrote:

 

"they [the elected government officials] are neither our servants, agents, attorneys, nor representatives . . . [for] we do not make ourselves responsible for their acts. If a man is my servant, agent, or attorney, I necessarily make myself responsible for all his acts done within the limits of the power I have intrusted to him. If I have intrusted him, as my agent, with either absolute power, or any power at all, over the persons or properties of other men than myself, I thereby necessarily make myself responsible to those other persons for any injuries he may do them, so long as he acts within the limits of the power I have granted him. But no individual who may be injured in his person or property, by acts of Congress, can come to the individual electors, and hold them responsible for these acts of their so-called agents or representatives. This fact proves that these pretended agents of the people, of everybody, are really the agents of nobody."

 

One can compare Spooner's insights to how the electoral process works in Canada: candidates are elected into parliament to represent their constituency. More often than not, they are backbenchers for the ruling party. The ruling party itself is a bureaucratic organization that receives money from both voluntary donations and coercion. While one is free to join a party, it is usually filled with members looking to increase their own power and influence of their cause. What relation do these strange institutions have to do with values and interests of the Canadian people? It is clearly a result of nineteenth century ideas about political philosophy, liberty and social order. It is an outdated system that's inefficient and ineffective. Worse, it's easily corruptible and has resulted in what we now colloquially call the new world order.

 

Mandatory voting may harm the Conservatives in the short-run but their campaign tactics would adapt to the new electoral realities and after a decade of corrupt Liberal rule, we'll be back with a Conservative government. That is, unless we break the cycle.

 

The idea that mandatory voting may somehow stop the Conservatives from ever gaining majority government again are unfounded. And if compulsory voting helps the Liberals, why should we support it? Political parties are springboards to power. Their goal is to win elections. When no one pays attention, when non-voters are a majority, it means we're winning. Not voting helps break the cycle of puppet A vs. puppet B. Compulsory voting masks voter apathy. It forces us to pretend that this democracy isn't a farce.

 

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