British Columbia's NDP Government: 2017

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Re: British Columbia's NDP Government: 2017

Postby Verum » Jan 13th, 2018, 3:17 pm

hobbyguy wrote:
Verum wrote:Man, those Irish people must be geniuses then. They've had STV for almost a century and those I know who live there have never once complained about difficult ballots and honestly, if you can't wrap your head around STV, you should probably go back to school and certainly should think twice about how much of a contribution your vote will really be. Anyway, Ireland have gone from one of the poorest countries in Europe, not least due to after effects of some rather brutal colonialism, to one of the richest. They have a government where the parties work together, to the point that when given a chance recently, rather than take down the government and force an election, the second largest party, Fianna Fáil supported the largest party Fine Gael, their sworn enemies, just to keep the country running smoothly. All for the benefit of the people. Can you really imagine the Liberals propping up the NDP for the benefit of BC? They would sooner eat their own offspring.

The problem with Australia is as much due to unintended consequences of having a mandatory vote, forcing disinterested and poorly informed voters to vote, badly. It has little to do with STV. Of course, it is obvious that you will blame any ill of a place with PR on the voting system, but, as with Germany, any positives are nothing to do with their electoral system whatsoever. I'm sure you'll say similar about Ireland.

Oh, and another point I read recently was that Northern Ireland, despite being at least 50% rather hostile to Ireland, has actually taken on the same electoral system as Ireland. This is despite the fact that the UK has traditionally been a FPTP country. I have absolutely no doubt that if the electoral system for Canada was being reinvented from scratch today, we would end up with some form of PR rather than our outdated, deficient system of Winner Takes All!


Ireland is an island nation that is highly homogeneous in demographics including a heavy religious influence from the Catholic church. It does not have nearly the differences in regional priorities to balance as BC has. BC is 13.5 times the size of Ireland, far more ethnically diverse, far more economically diverse, and far more culturally diverse.

Ireland also has publicly funded election campaigns where they provide air time etc. for all candidates. That has more to do with the fairness of the system than the electoral system.

For every successful PR case, like Ireland, which I believe succeeds because of its homogeneous nature, I can show you many more where the problems induced by PR outweigh the benefits.

Ireland is homogenous?! What century are you living in? Roughly 15% of the population is foreign born (Canada is 20%), they have a very large single metropolitan area (Dublin and surrounds) and the rest, much like BC with Vancouver and the rest. Cultural diversity is far more prevalent than you might think. Hell, just go there and talk to the people. The accent changes from town to town. There is similar, if not greater diversity of accent in Ireland as in all of Canada, from shore to shore. Which is an important marker of diversity within the native population of Ireland.

Ireland's success largely seemed to start when the influx of foreign workers started. I can't claim to know which caused which, but I have little doubt that they are related.

Of course, every uninformed commentator likes to trot out the Catholic church and her power over the Irish. They introduced same sex marriage by referendum which was necessary due to having language concerning the make up of the family in their constitution, and that was the first such World wide, and it passed with an overwhelming majority (62:38). The are, again due to constitutional issues, looking to introduce abortion through a referendum with a predicted similar size majority. Yes, sounds like the Catholic church has a firm grip on Ireland. They may take a long time to make the changes, but that is the very nature of PR, it requires widespread consensus for significant changes.

As for density, yes, BC is far less densely populated, we have far greater natural resources, but that has sadly not resulted in greater income for our voters. They are just better paid than we are:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_average_wage

Every system has its problems, but the vast majority of people against PR have demonstrated either or both a complete lack of understanding of what PR can look like, being a huge spectrum of possibilities, or have a serious partisan bias against the NDP or in favour of the Liberals. It just sounds to me as if they are only interested in the preservation of tyranny by the minority in BC. I would sooner have all voices heard in our legislative assembly than only have the voice of 45% of the people heard, even if that results in a few extremists having some influence, because our legislative assembly should represent all of British Columbians, not fewer than half?
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Re: British Columbia's NDP Government: 2017

Postby hobbyguy » Jan 14th, 2018, 1:39 am

^^ Nope. You underestimate the folks who oppose PR to justify your position. We have discussed a number of countries with various systems, and very few have made PR work any better than what we have, and most have not made it work as well as what we have.

Yes, Ireland is very homogeneous compared to BC. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Demographics_of_British_Columbia Both ethnically, culturally, and economically.

And yes, BC is more prosperous than Ireland. We are one the more prosperous provinces in Canada, and Canada as a whole is more prosperous than Ireland. http://www.prosperity.com/rankings BC ranks tops in Canada in most areas, and Canada beats Ireland in most measures of the prosperity index. BC has one of the higher median wages in Canada, and Canadian median wages make Ireland look bad. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Median_income

PR is just political shenanigans by the NDG to line their pockets.
We can have democracy in this country, or we can have great wealth concentrated in the hands of a few, but we can't have both. - Louis D. Brandeis
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Re: British Columbia's NDP Government: 2017

Postby rustled » Jan 14th, 2018, 11:55 am

Thinking back to the results of our most recent election: we elected a minority government, and that government recognized the need to cooperate with the other parties, adapting their plans for the coming months to incorporate some of what those parties (and presumably by extension) the voters who elected MLAs wanted. They did not concede on vital projects (like the Site C), and the recent decision by Horgan to proceed seems to show they were correct in this.

Weaver was in the perfect position to force the Liberals to pay more attention, to better meet the expectations of a broader spectrum of voters. He not only threw that away, he ensured the Green party and NDP would be far better off financially than they would have if they'd been concerned about the broad spectrum of voters. They proved they were no better than any other party.

For me, the deal Horgan and Weaver made to seize power, rather than hold the Liberal minority's feet to the fire and insist on an agenda that better reflected all of us, shows us exactly what we could expect to see more of, without FPTP elections: turmoil and constantly muddied waters, while both party and individual leaders' interests continually trump the greater interests of most British Columbians.

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Re: British Columbia's NDP Government: 2017

Postby Queen K » Jan 14th, 2018, 12:15 pm

Aren't we way past that though? ^^ As in, "Yes, yes, well established by now."


What are they doing this week? That's what I want to know.
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Re: British Columbia's NDP Government: 2017

Postby Verum » Jan 14th, 2018, 12:18 pm

hobbyguy wrote:^^ Nope. You underestimate the folks who oppose PR to justify your position. We have discussed a number of countries with various systems, and very few have made PR work any better than what we have, and most have not made it work as well as what we have.

Yes, Ireland is very homogeneous compared to BC. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Demographics_of_British_Columbia Both ethnically, culturally, and economically.

And yes, BC is more prosperous than Ireland. We are one the more prosperous provinces in Canada, and Canada as a whole is more prosperous than Ireland. http://www.prosperity.com/rankings BC ranks tops in Canada in most areas, and Canada beats Ireland in most measures of the prosperity index. BC has one of the higher median wages in Canada, and Canadian median wages make Ireland look bad. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Median_income

PR is just political shenanigans by the NDG to line their pockets.

What % of BC's population was born in Canada? I can't find it on that demographics page, but it suffices to say that BC and Ireland actually have similar levels of diversity in many regards. BC, despite the common belief to the contrary isn't really that diverse and Ireland, despite common belief to the contrary isn't really that homogenous.

Your prosperity index is an artificial construction of multiple sources and not a real measure of income. It's also notable that both countries are very close in rankings (8th and 12th). Also, BC is actually below average for median household income for Canada ($79,750CAD vs $80940CAD). Also, why did you use 2013 numbers for incomes when I provided 2016 ones? I need to look into the numbers because the average wage in Ireland is significantly higher in the more recent numbers, which doesn't tally with the median income in the numbers you posted. Either way, newer numbers by a more trustworthy source is more suitable.

And your constant bringing it back to being about the "NDG" etc. just further supports my belief that it is a purely partisan issue, rather than some attempt to find the best possible system, parties be damned.
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Re: British Columbia's NDP Government: 2017

Postby rustled » Jan 14th, 2018, 12:20 pm

I think we can safely assume they're still working at promoting the best PR system for their parties.
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Re: British Columbia's NDP Government: 2017

Postby Omnitheo » Jan 14th, 2018, 12:21 pm

seewood wrote:What happens if you are supposed to tick off three candidates according to preference but only tick one as the other two are hacks? Does that become a spoiled ballot? ( hope not)



Nope. In a preferred ballot, you are free to enter only one name and treat it the same as a normal single choice ballot.
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Re: British Columbia's NDP Government: 2017

Postby rustled » Jan 14th, 2018, 12:33 pm

Omnitheo wrote:
seewood wrote:What happens if you are supposed to tick off three candidates according to preference but only tick one as the other two are hacks? Does that become a spoiled ballot? ( hope not)



Nope. In a preferred ballot, you are free to enter only one name and treat it the same as a normal single choice ballot.

A lot of work went into the STV proposal prior to the referendum. It will be interesting to see if that will be resurrected for our perusal. Either way, I'd like to think it would be presented more effectively this time around. I'd like to have more reasons to think better of the current non-coalition coalition.

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Re: British Columbia's NDP Government: 2017

Postby hobbyguy » Jan 14th, 2018, 4:39 pm

Verum, no it isn't a partisan issue. It is a matter of reality. You CHOOSE to see PR as a partisan issue. It is not.

There is nothing better about PR/STV/MMP systems than what we have. (The Irish are probably a little happier about their system because campaigns are government run at arm's length.)

If you look at the last Irish election, Fine Gael got 25.5% of the vote - 31.6% of the seats, Fianna Fail got 24.3% of the vote - 27.8% of the seats, Labour got 6.6% of the vote - 4.4% of the seats, the Greens got 2.7% of the vote - 1.3% of the seats.

Fine Gael and Fianna Fail took 63 days to hammer out a back room deal to form government. Yup, between them they did NOT have a majority in the popular vote. Yup, both of them got disproportionately more seats than votes. Yup, the small parties got done over for seats. Yup, the Trotskyites got some seats - but not speaking rights. Yup, the anti-abortion party got government funding to continue its political activities.

I fail to see how such a mess is an improvement. The party that formed the Irish government got 31.6/25.5 = 24% more seats than their vote %. In our system the BC Liberals got 22.5% more seats than their vote %, the NDP got 18% more seats than their vote %. If you look at that, our system is actually slightly more proportional, not less.

Politicians, and especially political "scientists" always game any electoral system. The party apparatchiks, after all, make a career of doing precisely that. The problems are not in the electoral system, they are in the big money for political parties, which the NDG have made worse, outside influences, and lack of political opportunity for average folks.

That's why no political party will ever endorse the idea of permanent minority governments where 15-20% of the seats just go by lottery to the citizenry.
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Re: British Columbia's NDP Government: 2017

Postby The Green Barbarian » Jan 15th, 2018, 8:40 am

Verum wrote:
And your constant bringing it back to being about the "NDG" etc. just further supports my belief that it is a purely partisan issue, rather than some attempt to find the best possible system, parties be damned.


total crap.
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Re: British Columbia's NDP Government: 2017

Postby butcher99 » Jan 15th, 2018, 8:40 pm

hobbyguy wrote:Verum, no it isn't a partisan issue. It is a matter of reality. You CHOOSE to see PR as a partisan issue. It is not.

There is nothing better about PR/STV/MMP systems than what we have. (The Irish are probably a little happier about their system because campaigns are government run at arm's length.)

If you look at the last Irish election, Fine Gael got 25.5% of the vote - 31.6% of the seats, Fianna Fail got 24.3% of the vote - 27.8% of the seats, Labour got 6.6% of the vote - 4.4% of the seats, the Greens got 2.7% of the vote - 1.3% of the seats.

.


No need to look at Ireland. Look at BC. How many years in a row did the Liberals have a majority government with about 40% of the popular vote? Look at the last election. The Liberals came within a handful of votes of again having a majority government with just 40.8% of the popular vote.

Explain to my how it is fair that a party can get just 40% of the vote and hold an absolute majority in the Parliament. That is why it needs to change. Every vote should count the same but with FPTP voting it just does not happen. Rural ridings have fewer people in them than the ridings in the lower mainland making lower mainland votes worth less.

I know you don't like it because if it changes the Liberals will probably never have an absolute majority again. But then, probably the NDP will not either. I am ok with that.

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Re: British Columbia's NDP Government: 2017

Postby LordEd » Jan 16th, 2018, 9:12 am

We also live in a very large and geographically diverse province. By putting more value on popular vote it gives more power to the densely populated and less on the large, lower populated areas.

Will their interests be ignored by the big cities even more?
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Re: British Columbia's NDP Government: 2017

Postby CapitalB » Jan 16th, 2018, 11:59 am

LordEd wrote:We also live in a very large and geographically diverse province. By putting more value on popular vote it gives more power to the densely populated and less on the large, lower populated areas.

Will their interests be ignored by the big cities even more?


It doesn't give more power to the popular vote. It basically makes the popular vote a negligible issue since the percentage of representation should be similar to the amount of votes each party received. Its more of a nerf to the popular vote if anything since currently the popular vote just refers to whichever party has the single largest voting block regardless of ideology.

Additionally there are work arounds to maintain balance between rural and urban zones from widening rural areas and shrinking urban ones so they have similar amounts of people and then having floating mps that serve the whole province. Under this kind of system rural areas would almost have more power since theres a good chance that they would outnumber the urban zones.
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Re: British Columbia's NDP Government: 2017

Postby hobbyguy » Jan 16th, 2018, 12:16 pm

butcher99 wrote:
hobbyguy wrote:Verum, no it isn't a partisan issue. It is a matter of reality. You CHOOSE to see PR as a partisan issue. It is not.

There is nothing better about PR/STV/MMP systems than what we have. (The Irish are probably a little happier about their system because campaigns are government run at arm's length.)

If you look at the last Irish election, Fine Gael got 25.5% of the vote - 31.6% of the seats, Fianna Fail got 24.3% of the vote - 27.8% of the seats, Labour got 6.6% of the vote - 4.4% of the seats, the Greens got 2.7% of the vote - 1.3% of the seats.

.


No need to look at Ireland. Look at BC. How many years in a row did the Liberals have a majority government with about 40% of the popular vote? Look at the last election. The Liberals came within a handful of votes of again having a majority government with just 40.8% of the popular vote.

Explain to my how it is fair that a party can get just 40% of the vote and hold an absolute majority in the Parliament. That is why it needs to change. Every vote should count the same but with FPTP voting it just does not happen. Rural ridings have fewer people in them than the ridings in the lower mainland making lower mainland votes worth less.

I know you don't like it because if it changes the Liberals will probably never have an absolute majority again. But then, probably the NDP will not either. I am ok with that.


Actually the fact that the Liberals kept a long string victories speaks to competence in sticking toward the center. The NDP could very easily have won a majority in 2013 as Carole James has rebuilt the party toward the center, but the nutbars in the party couldn't stand it, and they stabbed her in the back and that paved the way for the Dix disaster.

When the NDP had solid leaders, solid left of center policies to offer, as they did with Dave Barrett and Mike Harcourt, they were quite able to take the reins of government.

There simply is no benefit in the PR/STV type systems, they are confusing, plagued by long periods of no government at all, and plagued by compromise back room deals by politicians who do no represent any constituency's interests that result in voters not getting much, if anything, of what they voted FOR. Such systems are also often characterized by a locked in "status quo" as any actions outside of the status quo will fall away in the compromise back room deals. They are also characterized by single issue small parties, regional parties, that wind up being the "tail that wags the dog".

The NDG not being able to legitimately defeat the Liberals is not the fault of the electoral system, it is the fault of those parties, taking ideological positions (from all over the left/enviro/ideologue landscape) that are unappealing to the mainstream.

Yes, there are some necessary reforms, campaign finance being one, big money influence ion politics, permanent political class, outside and third party influence, but none of those are related to the electoral system, they are gaming the system, which is done regardless of what electoral system is used. Point of fact the NDG have messed up the opportunity to reform those aspects, and instead opted for stealing taxpayer money to pay for their poorly run parties - which is entirely unacceptable.

FPTP is far superior to the mess we see in most PR/STV countries. Germany still doesn't have a government (Sept. election) and none is forecast until spring as the back room deal making continues.
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Re: British Columbia's NDP Government: 2017

Postby hobbyguy » Jan 16th, 2018, 12:21 pm

MrBrocksEgo wrote:
LordEd wrote:We also live in a very large and geographically diverse province. By putting more value on popular vote it gives more power to the densely populated and less on the large, lower populated areas.

Will their interests be ignored by the big cities even more?


It doesn't give more power to the popular vote. It basically makes the popular vote a negligible issue since the percentage of representation should be similar to the amount of votes each party received. Its more of a nerf to the popular vote if anything since currently the popular vote just refers to whichever party has the single largest voting block regardless of ideology.

Additionally there are work arounds to maintain balance between rural and urban zones from widening rural areas and shrinking urban ones so they have similar amounts of people and then having floating mps that serve the whole province. Under this kind of system rural areas would almost have more power since theres a good chance that they would outnumber the urban zones.


The work arounds for rural/urban don't work. Look at Western Australia as an example.

Look at the results of the Irish election I posted, the government coalition got a lower proportion of the popular vote and thus is LESS proportional than what we have.

Why SHOULD the popular vote be nerfed?? Is that because loser politicians and their party apparatchiks want job security for their fat $alaries and fat pension$$$$ ..?
We can have democracy in this country, or we can have great wealth concentrated in the hands of a few, but we can't have both. - Louis D. Brandeis
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