Tag Archives: elections

Rankled by Ranked Ballots

By Jay Menard

Sometimes things sound good in concept, but when it comes down to real-life application they fall short.

Smoked meat pizza? One perfect thing and one near-perfect thing matched? Should be heaven, but it tastes like hell. And different ‘types’ of poutine? Curds, gravy, fries (layered)… anything more is like drawing a moustache on the Mona Lisa and calling it an improvement.

And, right now, ranked ballots fall into that category. Continue reading

Mandatory Voting Isn’t the Answer, Especially When Getting Educated is So Much Harder Now

By Jay Menard

More voters isn’t the answer. More educated voters is. But the fact is that it’s increasingly challenging for the average person to know what’s true and what’s just partisan spin.

Like clockwork, the idea of mandatory voting has come around again — this time with the Liberal Party has been floating a trial balloon about the concept. For mandatory voting to work, you have to incentivize the process — either positively (through tax breaks) or negatively (through threats). But what it misses is the fact that a 100 per cent voter turnout doesn’t mean anything if the vast majority are simple going through the motions.

Mandatory voting  doesn’t change the simple reality that a forced vote is not necessarily a good vote. And there can be no assurance that people who have previously not bothered to vote — for whatever reason — will suddenly take the responsibility seriously.

And it is a responsibility. Continue reading

Wanted: The Truth Behind Mayor Wanted

By Jason Menard

The less I know about the person or persons behind the Mayor Wanted ad, the more I’m concerned.

First, a quick rundown. Earlier today, a job posting and subsequent Mayor Wanted Web site was launched ostensibly as a “job opening” for the position of City of London.

In and of itself, it was fine… until we got to the end.

What initially concerned me most, at first, was the “for community support email mayorwanted@gmail.com and we will connect you with Londoners who care deeply about the future of our city.”

I’m one of those Londoners. So I was interested. Who are these people? Who decides who they connect to.

And the answer — or lack thereof — is where I get nervous about how this information is being used. Continue reading

Operation: Don’t Vote

By Jason Menard

There are those quick to take the “get out and vote” stand. And while this statement is often made casually — as if it’s a foregone conclusion — the fact is that voting is not a game and even a well-meant idea can have serious ramifications.

For the most part, the get out and vote movement is well-intentioned. It’s just misguided. You’ve likely heard, “It’s your civic duty…” or some permutation of that thought. But whether they’re using the term duty, obligation, moral responsibility, they’re simply wrong.

Voting is our right. Just as not voting is. Continue reading

Go Ahead and Cross the Floor MPs. Just Ask First

By Jason Menard

What’s that old adage? Two wrongs don’t make a right? As good-intentioned as the Cross the Floor petition may be, encouraging elected representatives to bastardize the voices given to them by the Canadian electorate can’t be condoned.

I don’t think it will come as a shock to anyone familiar with my writing that I’m not exactly a Conservative supporter. I’ve long considered myself socially and culturally liberal, but fiscally conservative. Continue reading

Fringe Candidates Foolishly Have No Door Upon Which Opportunity Can Knock

By Jason Menard

For a sub-species of people that make their living, in part, by going from door to door, it shocks me that certain politicians – including those who would benefit the most – are neglecting an opportunity that’s knocking louder than ever.

In fact, not only are they not hearing the knock – they haven’t even bothered to put up a door whatsoever. Continue reading

Professional or Puerile? How Do We Want to Be Represented?

By Jason Menard

Politics has long been a game of dirty pool. With only 30 days to go before Ontarians head to the polls, we can only hope that voters will decide they want a straight shooter — and that politicians will remember that when we go to the polls, we’re electing someone who will represent us.

And that means candidates must act in a way worthy of our voice. I know how I would represent myself in the legislature — so I expect my elected voice to behave in a similar fashion. Continue reading