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Online Poll-Based Party Seeks Election Win

samzenpus posted more than 3 years ago | from the vote-and-vote-often dept.

Australia 117

schliz writes "Online poll-based political party Senator Online is looking for senate candidates to contest the next Australian Federal Election. The party does not have any policies or an official stance, and promises to conduct online votes on major issues and act in Parliament accordingly. It has already appointed its candidate for the state of New South Wales through an online recruitment campaign in which candidates had to receive a minimum of 100 endorsements — either via its website or Facebook 'fans' — and raise a minimum of $200. This will be Senator Online's second Federal Election. When it contested in 2007, it received between 0.05 and 0.09 percent of each state's votes."

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117 comments

A good idea (1)

Pojut (1027544) | more than 3 years ago | (#32826814)

I'd vote for 'em.

Re:A good idea (1)

Flea of Pain (1577213) | more than 3 years ago | (#32826924)

No kidding, it is democracy in it rawest form, and it looks like it may in fact be a better form of governing if the technological hurdles can be avoided or dealt with (vote rigging, hacking, 4chan, and other shenanigans)

Re:A good idea (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32826966)

Ahh, good ole' democracy, where 51% votes to oppress the other 49%. That's justice and liberty for all!

Good idea, but has some limits (2, Interesting)

h00manist (800926) | more than 3 years ago | (#32827254)

I would vote for them too. But not hoping some immediate revolution would take place. It's hard to implement and would have backlash from the establishment, claiming something is illegal, irregular, etc. Having the candidate fully represent his online-bosses (thats what constituents should be!) will become a practical and technical challenge. To really represent what the poll-participants said, he would have to also change his mind when they do, adopt positions setup and give speeches written by them, see how to give interviews, participate in debates, etc. The mass of represented voters would have to be organized. Their organization would need to have some sort of structure, or have it be the no-structure-officialized, mass-rule-is-an-organized-structure. Abuse of power, or infighting, will follow, because it is so common in society. In the end, the only real path to a better society and government is education, reducing the average level of ignorance. .

Re:Good idea, but has some limits (2, Insightful)

commodore64_love (1445365) | more than 3 years ago | (#32827520)

Hopefully the candidate would have enough sense not to follow Every suggestion from his home turf:

- Should women be allowed to vote?
55% no. 35% yes. 10% unsure

- Recently teens were caught in lacivious activities (photographing each other naked). Should I pass a law to give them 10 year sentences in juvenile hall for producing child porn?

70% yes. 20% no. 10% unsure

And so on.

Re:Good idea, but has some limits (1)

commodore64_love (1445365) | more than 3 years ago | (#32827550)

Another example (from the past)

- We were just attacked and bombed at Pearl Harbor - an act of infamy. Should we round-up japanese-Americans and put them in concentration camps?

- 90% yes. 10% no.

Re:Good idea, but has some limits (2, Insightful)

Requiem18th (742389) | more than 3 years ago | (#32828006)

Wait wait wait both of you guys, are you telling us that direct democracy will cause those problems and representative democracy would prevent them? Because those examples actually happened under representative democracy not too long ago, so what's the shit are you talking about?

Re:Good idea, but has some limits (1)

kikito (971480) | more than 3 years ago | (#32828398)

Absolutely correct. The logic on the other two previous posts is flawed.

Re:Good idea, but has some limits (1)

Bill_the_Engineer (772575) | more than 3 years ago | (#32828510)

Actually the polling done in the article is a representative democracy. It's just done to the extreme. Remember the poll only determines the outcome of a single representative, who's job is to represent the views of his constituency.

Re:Good idea, but has some limits (1)

XxtraLarGe (551297) | more than 3 years ago | (#32830390)

How about: The World Trade Center was just hit by two planes filled with terrorists from Saudi Arabia. Nuke Saudi Arabia? Yes: 70%, No 10%, Undecided: 20%. I'm pretty sure that's how it would have went down if you had a vote a day or two after it happened...

Re:A good idea (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32827438)

Ahh, good ole' republic, where you vote for a shitfaced lying weasel who will stab you in the back at the earliest opportunity, run the country into the ground, pay out your tax dollars to his corporate buddies, ignore the constitution, and so on.

But at least he supports your position on abortion, and that's the most important thing amirite?

The hilarious thing about our founding fathers is that they explicitly warned that "giving to every citizen the same opinions, the same passions, and the same interests" would be "impracticable" (Federalist 10) yet this is the effect of electing one person to represent hundreds of thousands of us. Oh sure, just because you voted for X because of his stance on abortion doesn't mean that you WANTED X to suck the country dry... but you DID vote for him, and that's what actually matters.

Nothing prevents a constitutional democracy from enjoying the protections that our republic has now, other than the fear that a majority/supermajority/unanimous vote/whateverrequirementtheconstitutionwouldplace would vote for the constitution's repeal.

Re:A good idea (1, Insightful)

shutdown -p now (807394) | more than 3 years ago | (#32827736)

Ahh, good ole' democracy, where 51% votes to oppress the other 49%. That's justice and liberty for all!

Indeed, and don't even get me started on those countries - like some in North America - that don't even require 51% of people's vote to amend their constitution, effectively allowing the minority to oppress the majority!

Re:A good idea (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32827788)

I am very curious who you are referring to. Who allows constitutional amendments with less than 51% of the vote?

Re:A good idea (1)

shutdown -p now (807394) | more than 3 years ago | (#32828460)

The procedure for constitutional amendment in the United States only requires that 3/4 of the States in the Union are in favor of it. To be more specific, you need 2/3 of all States to summon a convention that can propose amendments, and once such a convention has them proposed, they can be ratified by a vote of 3/4 of all States.

(Convention has never been used to amend the Constitution in practice, but it remains on the books as a legal way to do that.)

Now, 3/4 of all States sounds like a lot, but due to huge differences in their populations, it's actually possible for smaller states to band up together and pass amendments while having less than 50% of popular vote. In fact, in the most extreme case (if you sort states by population, and take ones from the bottom until you get to 3/4 by count), you end up with only 30% of the total US population figure.

It's not something that is very likely to happen, mind you, because the most populous state include e.g. New York and Texas side by side... but the system itself nonetheless allows for this kind of "tyranny of the minority".

Re:A good idea (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32828716)

in the most extreme case (if you sort states by population, and take ones from the bottom until you get to 3/4 by count), you end up with only 30% of the total US population figure.

And that's with the best case scenario of 100% of the population of those states supporting the amendments. In reality, the ratification is done by the states' legislatures (or sometimes a convention but even then they're still somehow represented), made up of the states' districts, so only a majority of districts need to support it. And only a majority of voters in a given district needed to support the representative supporting the amendment.

Re:A good idea (2, Informative)

Bill_the_Engineer (772575) | more than 3 years ago | (#32828576)

Indeed, and don't even get me started on those countries - like some in North America - that don't even require 51% of people's vote to amend their constitution, effectively allowing the minority to oppress the majority!

At least it's not the US because it needs at least 66% of both houses to even PROPOSE an admendment.

From http://www.usconstitution.net/constam.html [usconstitution.net]:

There are essentially two ways spelled out in the Constitution for how to propose an amendment. One has never been used.

The first method is for a bill to pass both houses of the legislature, by a two-thirds majority in each. Once the bill has passed both houses, it goes on to the states. This is the route taken by all current amendments. Because of some long outstanding amendments, such as the 27th, Congress will normally put a time limit (typically seven years) for the bill to be approved as an amendment (for example, see the 21st and 22nd).

The second method prescribed is for a Constitutional Convention to be called by two-thirds of the legislatures of the States, and for that Convention to propose one or more amendments. These amendments are then sent to the states to be approved by three-fourths of the legislatures or conventions. This route has never been taken, and there is discussion in political science circles about just how such a convention would be convened, and what kind of changes it would bring about.

Regardless of which of the two proposal routes is taken, the amendment must be ratified, or approved, by three-fourths of states. There are two ways to do this, too. The text of the amendment may specify whether the bill must be passed by the state legislatures or by a state convention. See the Ratification Convention Page for a discussion of the make up of a convention. Amendments are sent to the legislatures of the states by default. Only one amendment, the 21st, specified a convention. In any case, passage by the legislature or convention is by simple majority.

The Constitution, then, spells out four paths for an amendment:

Proposal by convention of states, ratification by state conventions (never used)
Proposal by convention of states, ratification by state legislatures (never used)
Proposal by Congress, ratification by state conventions (used once)
Proposal by Congress, ratification by state legislatures (used all other times)

It is interesting to note that at no point does the President have a role in the formal amendment process (though he would be free to make his opinion known). He cannot veto an amendment proposal, nor a ratification. This point is clear in Article 5, and was reaffirmed by the Supreme Court in Hollingsworth v Virginia (3 US 378 [1798])

Re:A good idea (1)

shutdown -p now (807394) | more than 3 years ago | (#32829068)

At least it's not the US because it needs at least 66% of both houses to even PROPOSE an admendment

Did you even read the very text that you've posted?

The second method prescribed is for a Constitutional Convention to be called by two-thirds of the legislatures of the States, and for that Convention to propose one or more amendments. These amendments are then sent to the states to be approved by three-fourths of the legislatures or conventions.

The Congress is not involved in that scenario at all, only State legislatures.

Yes, this method has never been used in practice. This doesn't make it invalid.

Re:A good idea (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32828100)

Especially when the 49% are faggots and queer lovers.

Re:A good idea (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32828754)

I prefer a dictatorship of me. Where one man oppress all others. Hey, at least I would be free.

Re:A good idea (1)

palndrumm (416336) | more than 3 years ago | (#32834000)

Ahh, good ole' democracy, where 51% votes to oppress the other 49%.

Not in this case. From TFA:

SOL senators will ... only vote on Bills if a "clear majority view" is determined by at least 100,000 votes and a 70 percent majority view.

Re:A good idea (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32834448)

No, no, no. Not 51% it can be as little as about 25%, the minimum condition for a 50% majority in 50% of electorates.

Re:A good idea (1)

somersault (912633) | more than 3 years ago | (#32827192)

Ahhh, finally someone who cares is trying to implement the idea I had ~10 years ago!

Re:A good idea (1)

severoon (536737) | more than 3 years ago | (#32828248)

The idea is interesting, but I don't think I could stomach hearing the media prattle on about how a country is turning into a "cybocracy" or an "informationsuperhighwocracy".

Re:A good idea (1)

pushing-robot (1037830) | more than 3 years ago | (#32828684)

Well, we need a prefix that sounds cool and references the people who would hold power—in this case, anyone with HTTP access. I suggest "Hypercracy".

Re:A good idea (1)

dave420 (699308) | more than 3 years ago | (#32828812)

It's only one half of democracy. A democracy requires people are knowledgeable about the subject of their voting. This does nothing to fix that.

Re:A good idea (1)

sorak (246725) | more than 3 years ago | (#32828422)

I heard part of a radio show, a few days ago, there someone called in stating that he had a sex-offender record from when he was 18, and dating a 16 year old. Apparently, in his state, that is enough to get you tarred for life. He was about to date a woman with children, but is worried that, if he does, that child services will take her children away. The host said

that's a tough one, I'm gonna throw it out to our audience. If you think he should break up with his girlfriend, text "break up" to XXXXXX. If you think they should stay together, text "stay" to XXXXXX

I was shocked that the host would take something so serious, (even if the caller lacked the good judgment to not trust call-in radio shows for advice), and leave it up to a simple poll. Not just because his listeners are young and inexperienced, but also because there are more options than a simple "yes" or "no". He could have called an advocate, or a lawyer, to find out information that this syndicated call-in host didn't have. He could have spoken with a representative of child protective services, and gotten a better feel for how the outcome would have turned out. I'm sure there are dozens of options, that I never considered.

My point is that a politician doesn't just show up for work and say

this is hard. If you think we should repeal social security, text "repeal" to 123456. If you think we should keep it going, exactly as it is, text "keep it" to 123456.

. He needs to understand the issues more than the average person, to negotiate compromises, if that is what it takes to get things accomplished, and to find those other options that may not have appeared on the polls, but would make for a better system.

So we let the trolls win? (4, Insightful)

Darkness404 (1287218) | more than 3 years ago | (#32826864)

The party does not have any policies or an official stance, and promises to conduct online votes on major issues and act in Parliament accordingly.

Ok, so we suddenly now have a way to make really reliable online polls? I don't know about you, but I wouldn't trust a party with no real platform and outsourcing all policy decisions to whoever has the best poll-spamming software.

Re:So we let the trolls win? (2)

Pojut (1027544) | more than 3 years ago | (#32826928)

but I wouldn't trust a party with no real platform

So you'd trust a party that does have a platform? Because history has shown that isn't too wise of an idea, either.

and outsourcing all policy decisions to whoever has the best poll-spamming software.

As opposed to whoever has the most money and the most industry connections?

At least this way the public KIND OF has some say in what happens.

Re:So we let the trolls win? (1)

Darkness404 (1287218) | more than 3 years ago | (#32826994)

I'm a member of the Libertarian party of the US ( http://www.lp.org/ [lp.org] ) and the few candidates that are elected have done an excellent job of following the party's platform, and yes, they actually do have a platform that is united and coherent when compared to the Republican/Democrat parties. No one can accurately describe the platform for the Republican or Democrat parties in one sentence and have it be true for the majority of candidates. With the Libertarian party it is easy. "Maximize economic and personal freedom and reduce the role of the government in everyday society"

Re:So we let the trolls win? (1)

Missing.Matter (1845576) | more than 3 years ago | (#32827114)

No one can accurately describe the platform for the Republican or Democrat parties in one sentence and have it be true for the majority of candidates.

Actually, both parties have the same platform: "Oppose what the other party supports"

Re:So we let the trolls win? (0, Flamebait)

MightyMartian (840721) | more than 3 years ago | (#32827178)

The problem with Libertarians is that you can see the platform and you quickly discover that Libertarians are a bunch of raving lunatics, hence the few elected. People would rather put up with the nebulous and vacuous platforms of the Republicans and Democrats than vote en masse for the likes Rand Paul (who has shown himself to be a right and proper Libertarian, racist and delusional).

Re:So we let the trolls win? (1)

Troggie87 (1579051) | more than 3 years ago | (#32827376)

Racist is a bit harsh, from what I've seen most libertarians are more inclined to say that the loss of freedom that comes from mandating racial acceptance isn't worth it. Not that I agree with that, but lets not confuse their idealism with racism. I will agree that the majority of the economic ideas they advocate are little more than wishful thinking for times gone by, rather than anything feasible for our modern world.

Re:So we let the trolls win? (3, Insightful)

MightyMartian (840721) | more than 3 years ago | (#32827502)

As has so often been pointed out, let's say we yanked all the Civil Rights legislation, and then let's say a black man is ejected from a restaurant which is now fully free to discriminate based on race. If the black man refuses to leave, and the police are called, the state is now not only tacitly accepting racism, it is in fact being used to actively support it.

Beyond that, the "let them eat cake" philosophy was tried, and its advocates ended up lighter the weight of their heads. No society in history, save perhaps in advanced stages of breakdown, has ever functioned the way Libertarians seem to think a society should function. Even Rome gave out bread, the alternative being food riots. Even enlightened self-interest suggests that the state better do something about the underclasses. In medieval times, the Church was effectively a branch of government, with forms of taxation powers and incomes from large land holdings to underwrite charitable works.

Re:So we let the trolls win? (1)

superdave80 (1226592) | more than 3 years ago | (#32829040)

"the state is now not only tacitly accepting racism, it is in fact being used to actively support it."

Well, it is actually supporting private property and enforcing trespassing laws. If a person you don't like (for whatever reason) refuses to leave your house, wouldn't you want the police to come haul him out of your home?

Re:So we let the trolls win? (1)

MightyMartian (840721) | more than 3 years ago | (#32829224)

First of all, I was talking about businesses. No civil rights legislation I ever heard of required you let anyone in your home you didn't want. But if you allow businesses to actively discriminate based on race, then you are essentially allowing organs of the state (the judiciary) to defend racism, under the guise of some sort of notion of unlimited property rights (though I never see Libertarians stating they're going to get rid of eminent domain, as always Libertarians are very uneven in how they apply their political philosophy).

If you've got one taxi in town, and it won't let black passengers ride in it, and if they try to, they'll be arrested in hauled into court for trespassing, I'm having a hard time seeing how the underlying situation has been improved. At some point you either throw up your arms and declare equality unobtainable, or you take a pragmatic approach and tell the cab driver anyone who can pay the fare has to be given a ride, and limiting the legal justifications to discrimination to, say, those who may pose some risk to the driver.

Re:So we let the trolls win? (1)

thodelu (1748596) | more than 3 years ago | (#32829772)

Yes, because trolls can ONLY be won by ignoring them. That is basic net wisdom - you cannot win over trolls. Even if you allow businesses to not display racism, that is not the same as changing other social aspects of racism. The business owner would still be teaching the same racist values he had to his kids. Trying to affect social change through legislation while do-able is tough. There can be other solutions that the Govt can do and does often - and that is propaganda. Propaganda has been used to be divisive in some nations, but also has been used effectively to bring about 'positive' social change in others.

Re:So we let the trolls win? (1)

MightyMartian (840721) | more than 3 years ago | (#32829976)

I would never look at this as teaching social change, I would look at it as assuring that the judiciary isn't effectively made to defy the spirit of laws like the Thirteenth Amendment. You're free to believe what you like, but you are not absolutely free to do as you want. It's an old principle, not a new one.

Re:So we let the trolls win? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32829758)

You mean, as apposed to the active use of age discrimination, as is practiced now by certain major companies and Govt. agencies?

Re:So we let the trolls win? (1)

Darkness404 (1287218) | more than 3 years ago | (#32833562)

As has so often been pointed out, let's say we yanked all the Civil Rights legislation, and then let's say a black man is ejected from a restaurant which is now fully free to discriminate based on race. If the black man refuses to leave, and the police are called, the state is now not only tacitly accepting racism, it is in fact being used to actively support it.

No, first off it is being used to enforce property rights, the same thing would happen if it was a violent person, or simply a person who refused to leave. Its no difference if someone is white/black/asian/etc. if they won't respect basic property rights, it is one of the state's proper jobs to remove them.

Secondly, what benefit would it do to shop where you weren't wanted? Racism is by nature illogical and is punished by the free market. If you look at the state of blacks in the south, it was caused because of government laws, segregation was opposed by many businesses such as railroad companies because it forced them to operate more cars thus cutting into their bottom lines.

No society in history, save perhaps in advanced stages of breakdown, has ever functioned the way Libertarians seem to think a society should function.

Mostly because the population was uneducated and delusional and didn't stand up for their rights. You only need to look at the US where we think that fiat currency, worthless metallic coinage and fractional-reserve banking are facts of life.

Secondly, look at -power-, everyone wants to abuse power if that is given to them. If you were an emperor and everyone thought you were a god, a son of a god or god-appointed, why bother caring about your people? When unlimited power is allowed, people will always abuse it, that is why a limited government is very important and why government needs to be checked by the people, hence why things like the second amendment are needed.

Even Rome gave out bread, the alternative being food riots

Um, yeah, and Rome also implemented price controls and a lot of other things that were non-libertarian. Rome basically served as the model for an "idealized" big-government state. I don't admire Rome in hindsight, granted, Rome did do a lot of things right over the years when compared to the rest of the world, but it was hardly perfect and hardly a good model for how a government should be run in an enlightened age.

Even enlightened self-interest suggests that the state better do something about the underclasses.

In a truly free society, how did the poor get poor? Yes, some people have bad luck, but the majority of the cases they did something and need to take responsibility. Why should I feel sorry for you that you decided you needed an HDTV and couldn't make the payments? Why should I feel sorry for you because you got a mortgage on a house you couldn't afford?

In medieval times, the Church was effectively a branch of government, with forms of taxation powers and incomes from large land holdings to underwrite charitable works.

...Yes? And? The church before the enlightenment was essentially a corrupt government and not a religious institution. When the enlightenment happened and people started using reason, they could see that what the church did was very oftentimes contrary to the teachings of the bible and that the church consistently overstepped its bounds and used blatant lies to defend its wrong position on many things, especially science.

Comparing the corrupt "church" to the religious institutions of today is an unfair comparison, people are now literate, they can read the bible for themselves, they have communication via the internet, no longer can the Pope declare a "justified" war because the people know that generally that is contrary to both reason and scripture. Without a large government, the chances of a corrupt church like that of pre-enlightenment Europe is slim to none.

Re:So we let the trolls win? (1)

Haffner (1349071) | more than 3 years ago | (#32827642)

"Maximize economic and personal freedom and reduce the role of the government in everyday society"

While I agreed with that sentence for most of this past decade, I believe the recent troubles with trading derivatives and the like will require regulation. Libertarians are on the right track, and I believe that platform would get 90% of everything right, but the other 10% would be damaging.

On the other hand, those currently in power seem content with getting it right 20% or less of the time.

Re:So we let the trolls win? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32827792)

I'm a member of the Libertarian party of the US ( http://www.lp.org/ [lp.org] ) and the few candidates that are elected have done an excellent job of following the party's platform, and yes, they actually do have a platform that is united and coherent when compared to the Republican/Democrat parties.

First off, take a breath of clear air without having your lips on Rupert Murdoch's asshole. Only Fox News and fellow travellers use that mis-spelling.

Secondly, of course the libertarian position can be summed up in one sentence: "GOVERNMENT BAD, RICH PEOPLE GOOD, AYN RAND BETTER (fap fap fap)!" The fact that it isn't supported by any data from reality is apparently irrelevant.

Re:So we let the trolls win? (1)

Pojut (1027544) | more than 3 years ago | (#32828220)

See, that's the problem with following a group of people who have a "platform"...believing only one side has the answer is extremely limiting.

Sure, I want government to keep their hands off my weed and my guns...but I would very much like them to keep their hands firmly gripped on things like automobile safety regulations, pharmaceutical drug regulations, public-funded assistance in disasters, things like that.

The problem with Libertarians is that they see most any form of government intervention as bad. Guess what: that's fucking stupid. It's an extremist view that completely ignores reality through, which I have zero tolerance for.

Re:So we let the trolls win? (1)

MightyMartian (840721) | more than 3 years ago | (#32828738)

See, that's the problem with following a group of people who have a "platform"...believing only one side has the answer is extremely limiting.

Amen! Pragmatism is an absolute must, even if, at times, it seems that everything runs towards the fuzzy center. A government has to have some latitude, some ability to look beyond the often narrow constraints of a single set of ideological axioms, otherwise it can turn into a locomotive moving at full steam towards an abyss. You look at societies like Hellenic Egypt or the Ottoman Empire, highly conservative in institutions, incapable or unwilling to adapt, and seemingly unable to reform to prevent the events that would lead to their downfall.

As with any political ideology, there are aspects of Libertarianism that, on their own, make sense. But to think that we could just turn the lights off on social safety nets and think that somehow, magically the poor will be emboldened to make more money, or that voluntary donations alone will make up the shortfall is absurdly optimistic to the point of delusional naivety.

One of the chief reasons that the electorates in the industrialized world supported the construction of these social safety nets at all was a sort of enlightened self-interest; you never know when you might need them. These programs weren't foisted on the public by evil bureaucrats and politicians, they were a reaction to public demands. What the Libertarians ultimately propose is that democracy should only count when it supports their ideology, the rest of the time, at least in the States, they want to invoke extremely narrow interpretations of the Constitution, ignoring any precedents and jurisprudence that questions their ideology.

Civil rights is a big one for me. It's pretty damned clear that from Reconstruction right on into the Civil Rights era, the laissez faire approach that the Federal government had taken, pretty much letting the states dictate the nature of what was a very hypothetical equality had not lead to any true equality. Even where you could force this on to Federal institutions, it did little to help African Americans, and in fact lead to rather noxious notions like "separate but equal".

But even once that was dispensed with, we still end up with a situation where equality is more hypothetical than real because of examples like the one I gave elsewhere, of a colored man being thrown out of a restaurant because of his color, the police being called, and despite being organs of the supposedly color-blind state, ultimately enforcing socially-normalized racism by removing the colored man, if not outright arresting him and seeing put on trial. A narrow Libertarian idea that somehow society would just evolve more tolerance was demonstrated to be utterly without foundation. A hundred years after Reconstruction, the promised equality and liberty did not exist and society, particularly in the former slave states (but certainly not limited to them) still accepted that blacks were inferior and posed risks to white society. The two-tiered society had certainly morphed since the slave days, but the underlying core premises were still as strong. A pragmatic view was that if that equality were ever to come on its own, it would be a very long time, so in the interests of equality and just plain decency, not to mention upholding the principles of Liberty upon which the United States had been founded, broad Civil Rights legislation was required.

Re:So we let the trolls win? (1)

RyuuzakiTetsuya (195424) | more than 3 years ago | (#32828272)

I would be afraid of any political party who's so simplistic that you can describe their entire platform in one sentence.

Particularly when that sentence is, "FUCK THE POOR."

Re:So we let the trolls win? (4, Insightful)

jeffmeden (135043) | more than 3 years ago | (#32826976)

The scary thing is that you don't even need overt corruption for this to go horribly wrong. All you need is a little persuasion and access to the right kinds of media. Anything can be spun, in any direction, and if it's up to every voter to be legitimately educated on every issue that comes up in government, GOD HELP US ALL! It's bad enough that the current popular representative form of government (around the world) basically gives a group of guys the keys to the country for 2-4 years at a stretch, now policy will shift daily based on who ran the most emotional commercials or trotted out the most appealing pundits on television.

Re:So we let the trolls win? (1)

shutdown -p now (807394) | more than 3 years ago | (#32827764)

now policy will shift daily based on who ran the most emotional commercials or trotted out the most appealing pundits on television.

So they will mostly be busy repealing the laws that the previous bunch has voted in? Sounds good to me. ~

Re:So we let the trolls win? (1)

jollyreaper (513215) | more than 3 years ago | (#32828384)

The scary thing is that you don't even need overt corruption for this to go horribly wrong. All you need is a little persuasion and access to the right kinds of media. Anything can be spun, in any direction, and if it's up to every voter to be legitimately educated on every issue that comes up in government, GOD HELP US ALL! It's bad enough that the current popular representative form of government (around the world) basically gives a group of guys the keys to the country for 2-4 years at a stretch, now policy will shift daily based on who ran the most emotional commercials or trotted out the most appealing pundits on television.

This is the part that really astounds me. It doesn't matter what the facts are because people don't pay attention. I never understood how the Big Lie worked until I finally saw it in action. Once the disinformation is out there, it expands to fill up all available mindshare. The truth can't get a word in edgewise. Al Gore invented the Internet. Obama is a socialist who wasn't even born in America anyway. Free markets work. There isn't yet a conclusive link between cancer and tobacco.

The other thing that really blows my mind is how pernicious faith is. People will use the words of science to justify their beliefs but many are still fundamentally faith-based -- it's an unreasoning belief in something that cannot be shaken by any volume of competing information. In fact, the maintenance of belief in the face of overwhelming evidence to the contrary is often seen as virtuous!

Hell, we can take a look at the old divisions in the geek community. Some people swear Microsoft is incapable of doing anything good. I maintain it's certainly possible, it just turns out that they never do. It's not automatically bad because Microsoft did it, it just means that you know there will be real flaws and drawbacks to point out. If it's from Microsoft and it doesn't have flaws, then it's still a good product. It could happen, honest. And the converse of this is assuming open source is automagically better because its open source. Usually open source means there aren't enough resources necessary for thorough documentation and UI polishing. Granted, for-profit software usually has that same drawback! But at least reasonable people can have a reasonable discussion about these things. Once you go faith-based, there's naught to do but plant stakes and grab pitchforks.

Re:So we let the trolls win? (1)

kevinNCSU (1531307) | more than 3 years ago | (#32830752)

He's got Politics, he's got Religion, can he go for the Hat-trick? He does, he scores the Trolling Hat-trick with Microsoft! The crowd goes wild!!!! ;)

Re:So we let the trolls win? (1)

istartedi (132515) | more than 3 years ago | (#32831196)

All you need is a little persuasion and access to the right kinds of media

Tell that to PG & E. Recently they spent something like $40 million on a proposition that would have forced municipalities to cast a 2/3 vote in order to set up alternative power systems. The initiative was a blatant example of that type of manipulation. The opposition raised a mere $100k. The initiative failed.

The whole episode restored my faith in humanity... somewhat. I was surprised the thing got as many votes as it did. Plainly, the voters need to be educated a bit more; but when legislation is as counterproductive as that prop was, all the money in the world can't pass it.

Re:So we let the trolls win? (1)

locallyunscene (1000523) | more than 3 years ago | (#32827070)

I know this is Australia, but being from the US, I would gladly pick this party over the two agendas we rotate between. Given the dissatisfaction Australians have of late with their gov't internet policy maybe a significant number of Australians will have similar thoughts.

How reliable the polls are going to be is related to how strongly their identity verification is. I wonder how far they will take that burden of proof.

I agree the idea of an Internet Party made up of the disparate psuedo-anonymous netizens would be impractical, if poetic.

Re:So we let the trolls win? (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32827098)

I wouldn't trust a party with no real platform and outsourcing all policy decisions to 4chan

Australia's national anthem becomes "Never Gonna Give You Up", is renamed "JEWISTAN" and declares war on "Apple using faggots". News at 11!

Re:So we let the trolls win? (1)

sorak (246725) | more than 3 years ago | (#32828132)

Not only that, but you have to ask who controls the polls. Statisticians have known for a long time that you can easily introduce bias into a poll by framing it in favor of your agenda. Are they literally going to just sit back and do nothing until a bill comes up for a vote, place the entire thing online and give everyone a yay or nay vote, or will they participate in the writing of that bill?

Re:So we let the trolls win? (1)

bkgood (986474) | more than 3 years ago | (#32828216)

Ok, so we suddenly now have a way to make really reliable online polls? I don't know about you, but I wouldn't trust a party with no real platform and outsourcing all policy decisions to whoever has the best poll-spamming software.

This is worse than the current system, in which only the richest people are able to influence policy? At least this lowers the bar, anyone with a $300 computer and a $20 internet connection can spam votes.

Re:So we let the trolls win? (1)

dkleinsc (563838) | more than 3 years ago | (#32828534)

Or as one online poll [slashdot.org] puts it:

This whole thing is wildly inaccurate. Rounding errors, ballot stuffers, dynamic IPs, firewalls. If you're using these numbers to do anything important, you're insane.

Re:So we let the trolls win? (1)

hoggoth (414195) | more than 3 years ago | (#32828694)

So basically this will be the 4chan party?

God help us all.

Re:So we let the trolls win? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32828776)

You mean:

Oh my God it's full of WIN!

Interesting, yet scary, concept (2, Insightful)

rotide (1015173) | more than 3 years ago | (#32826870)

I like the idea in theory. Majority wins and not just the vocal (or rich) minority. However, how susceptible to fraud is this system going to be? Find an exploit in the code of the poll and run your opponents into the ground? Errors, glitches, server downtime, etc, etc, etc. I'm not saying any one of those problems is unique to this style of voting, but it does seem to be an easier target.

Re:Interesting, yet scary, concept (2, Insightful)

Darkman, Walkin Dude (707389) | more than 3 years ago | (#32827576)

Majority wins and not just the vocal (or rich) minority.

If you want to see direct democracy at work, look at California. The Swiss have something similar and some of their Cantons only gave women the vote in the 90s. Thats the 1990s. And they had to be forced to do it. If you want to deal with corruption outlaw corporate donations to political parties, thats all.

Re:Interesting, yet scary, concept (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32828120)

Majority wins and not just the vocal (or rich) minority.

That is already supposed to happen in ordinary elections. The reason it doesn't is that the majority obeys what they are told by the vocal, rich minority who can buy popularity in the media. Holding referenda won't change that - quite the opposite.

Re:Interesting, yet scary, concept (1)

ScentCone (795499) | more than 3 years ago | (#32828622)

Majority wins and not just the vocal (or rich) minority

The problem is that the majority wants free stuff, and wants it now. Just like in California, they (the majority, by referendum) paint themselves into a corner financially, and then see taxing the productive minority of the population as the only way out. The problem with non-productive, confiscatory majorities is that they eventually run out of people to take things from.

What could possibly go wrong (1)

jeffmeden (135043) | more than 3 years ago | (#32826892)

Sounds like Australia is well on their way to repealing the Second and Third laws of Thermodynamics, as they have proven to be unpopular in similar online electoral systems. I guess that's one way to get what you want.

I give it a month (3, Funny)

jeffmeden (135043) | more than 3 years ago | (#32826914)

If this party comes to power, how long do you reckon it will take for the whole country to have it's name changed to "Stephen Colberia"?

We already have parties that stand for nothing (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32826970)

Do we need any more?

And this direct democracy stuff is overrated. Most people tout it as they think it inevitably leads to progressive outcomes until the proles vote against gay marriage.

The people are patriotic and have nothing to hide so they would vote away most of their rights and vote for free ponies if we let them.

I think this party is that idea taken to the extreme.

We do not need more democracy. We are already getting the government we deserve. This would only make it worse.

Great! One of my new party ideas... (1)

thijsh (910751) | more than 3 years ago | (#32827028)

There are three revolutionary parties without policies or stance I would love to see:
- Poll party (every issue is polled and thus as democratic as possible)
- Scientific party (every issue is decided on basis of facts alone, weighing only measurable pro's and cons)
- Neutral party (every issue is decided on election day, taking the stance of other parties based in votes total for each issue. This works as an equalizer, only taking the best of all parties. NOTE: this only works if there are a lot more than 2 parties!)

Great to see someone creating an advance in democracy! Although I must note the first one is most susceptible to the whims of the crowds, which can sway easily with some (im)proper media coverage... So that would be my least favorite of 3.
Well, still, one down and two more to go!!!

Scientific Party (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32827284)

Scientific Party doesn't make sense. You can't make decisions on facts alone; goals and desires are always part of it, and that's what makes a decision political. Name any issue of any type, where a political decision can be made based on facts alone. There aren't any.

Re:Great! One of my new party ideas... (1)

Darkman, Walkin Dude (707389) | more than 3 years ago | (#32827600)

Sure, whats the scientific stance on gay marraige or abortion?

Re:Great! One of my new party ideas... (1)

VortexCortex (1117377) | more than 3 years ago | (#32828124)

Sure, whats the scientific stance on gay marriage?

Marriage is a legal union of two people.
Marriage laws are not concerned with sexual orientation, only a person's anatomical sex.

For example:
A heterosexual male can marry a bisexual or even homosexual female.
A homosexual man can legally marry a homosexual woman.

Since many types of gay marriage are already legal it makes no logical sense to disallow only one specific case:
A homosexual same sex marriage.

In conclusion:
Sexual discrimination is illegal.
Gay marriage IS ALREADY LEGAL.
Let us formally and legally declare ALL gay marriages to be legal in order to clarify our stance: Discrimination based on sex is wrong.

Re:Great! One of my new party ideas... (2, Insightful)

XxtraLarGe (551297) | more than 3 years ago | (#32830678)

Discrimination based on sex is wrong.

I'm not trolling but you've just demonstrated a problem with a "scientific" party. You can't prove that discrimination is wrong using the scientific method. You and I may not like discrimination for whatever reason, but there's nothing in science that allows you to say something is wrong in a moral sense.

Re:Great! One of my new party ideas... (1)

Daniel_Staal (609844) | more than 3 years ago | (#32828338)

Mu [catb.org]: it does not apply. Or more correctly: The facts do not support a decision on the issue at this time one way or another.

(Well, I'm sure there would have to be 'abortion is legal at least in order to save the life of the mother if the alternative is that both the mother and child die'. Widening the decision scope beyond that would be tricky at the very least.)

On both of these they might be able to form a coherent approach if they were given a specific, defined question about the issue. Part of the current problem on both issues is that the various sides have different questions they are trying to answer with their stance.

Re:Great! One of my new party ideas... (1)

thijsh (910751) | more than 3 years ago | (#32828346)

Good examples! I'll do a short attempt:

Gay marriage: There is marriage for the government and marriage for the church, a church can choose not to marry gay people, but they have no say over the state. Furthermore the value of the marriage before the state is in no way diminished, and it reduces complication with (parental) rights. There is no proven effect that two homosexual parents can't raise children, but they generally have less children and both have an income so they are good for the economy. All in all this is about equal legal rights, without downsides except in the eyes of a select few who experience no measurable disadvantages because of other people getting married in non-traditional ways.

Abortion: The only problem is determining the proper 'line' where a fetus becomes a human being (for example the first brain activity), before that an abortion is a naturally occurring process (in fact over 50% of every womans first conception end with a natural abortion). In all area's of medicine we enhance the natural abilities or mitigate the shortcomings of the human body. Abortion is a way of enhancing this natural occurring phenomenon which occurs when severe (genetic) defects are detected, or the mothers body is not ready (because of age, malnutrition, or sickness), so both these natural reasons should be enhanced by medicine.

The only problem with both these points is from a religious point of view... But since state and religion should be separated there is no reason to ban these things.
For example: The great thing about choice is that you can choose *not* to have an abortion if your have any moral dilemma. There is no sufficient reason to overrule the basic human right of choice over their live and body, especially since this a very slippery slope. There are hundreds of ways of inducing a natural abortion too, once abortion is forbidden should we throw women who get a natural abortion in jail too because they could have prevented it? And when a woman doesn't know she's pregnant, should we mandate daily pregnancy tests and proactively strap pregnant women to a hospital bed for 9 months? You understand why this is ridiculous, but that is the whole problem with having a religious motivated problem with something that is natural, you have no way of knowing how ridiculous it will end once you allow people to rule a country based on (often wrongly interpreted) myths and morals of millennia old...

Very interesting idea (1)

Zot Quixote (548930) | more than 3 years ago | (#32827042)

Obviously there are some pragmatic issues (making sure the whole thing isn't gamed by one bot voting a million times), but it is an interesting attempt at allowing people to have a truely populist option for their representation.

In the past, true populism was very tough to come by...it was easy for an elected official to become 'out of touch'. However now, a more perfect representation of the views of the moment of people can be had, thanks to technology.

Of course, the other question is, is that even a good thing. Populism isn't always right. Slavery in the US was popular, it took Lincoln's strong leadership to move away from it. Many wars are unpopular, but some of them may be necessary (conversely, some wars may be popular but unnecessary, see US/Iraq Gulf War II).

I can't wait... (1)

Troggie87 (1579051) | more than 3 years ago | (#32827068)

...till someone hacks one of their polls and a half-million votes appear for puppy meat as the national food. I only see this ending well.

Reminds me of TON (1)

the_brobdingnagian (917699) | more than 3 years ago | (#32827174)

Reminds me of the Dutch party TON (Trots op Nederland / Proud of The Netherlands). They tried to write the official election program on a public wiki. That was a disaster! All I can remember was "free toothpaste for everyone". Asking the general public for an opinion on everything is nice, but they should be able to make an informed decision.

Tyranny of the Majority (3, Insightful)

GreatAntibob (1549139) | more than 3 years ago | (#32827186)

It's a dangerous idea to let a majority of voters decide things. Think about the Civil Rights Act in the US. If it had been based on direct polling of the public, it never would have passed. The whole point of a representative democracy is that the guys elected (or appointed) to the legislature should, in theory, be wise enough to occasionally act against the wishes of the majority of the public, even if this costs future elections. Doing the "right" thing isn't always doing the popular thing.

It's also the case that you don't always want a simple majority deciding issues. All you would need is a bloc of 51% of the polled members always agreeing to vote the same way. That's how political parties came about in the first place. Even though the other 49% represent almost the same number of people, their voices would be ignored in favor of a slightly larger group.

This type of "Party" might work for a few seats, but I doubt the general public of any nation is sufficiently informed (or intelligent) to decide on general legislation. It also opens the door to allowing small minorities (ethnic, religious, etc) to be completely ignored in favor of larger minorities or majorities (consider the case of Port Chester, NY). Perhaps not such a big problem in Australia but something to consider for direct democracies of all types. They only tend to work in places with very homogeneous groups of people (homogeneous ethnically, religiously, and economically).

brilliant political hack (3, Interesting)

circletimessquare (444983) | more than 3 years ago | (#32827214)

i've been thinking a lot about virtual democracy, and how it would be superior to our status quo of "elect a liar, send him to the capital to vote for whichever corporation pays him the most money instead of his constituent's interests" bullshit that is the biggest problem with corruption and democracy

transitioning to virtual democracy is obviously a problem, but this is a brilliant political hack because it basically force inserts virtual democracy into our status quo political system. huzzah! great idea guys ;-)

however, i have three complaints with virtual democracy. i still think the idea of virtual democracy is superior to elect-the-asshole-with-the-most-corporate-dollars that we currently live under, however, these complaints are real and need to be addressed:

1. fraud. how the hell do you prevent people from outside your constituency from voting? how do you make sure they vote only once? how do you prevent outright vote tampering, spoofing, etc. we have serious technological security problems here

2. apathy. a benefit of sending a representative to government rather than individuals voting all the time is that its tiresome. none of us have the time to familiarize ourselves with every issue and vote constantly, we have lives to lead. additionally, for emotionally contentious issues, you are going to have passionate minorities voting and the apathetic majority not voting. so the minority decides issues, and then the majority wakes up the next morning and goes "what happened?" example, gay rights: the social conservatives will come out in force and drown out the gay votes, and even though the majority is in favor of gay rights, they simply won't get off their asses and do the right thing and vote for what is right because their own selfish interests are not immediately and obviously threatened. again, a problem, not a fatal one, but a real problem with virtual democracy

3. corruption always finds a way. in the philippines it is a sort of joke that 200 peso notes become scarce around election times, because of all the outright vote buying that goes on. the philippines has a lot of poverty, so this doesn't happen in countries where the middle class dominates, but the way deregulation and whittle down the government libertarian morons are in vogue, we are destroying the middle class, and we'll be with the philippines soon enough (oh, libertarians, you didn't know your ideology meant a sea of poor and a few ultrarich and the destruction of the middle class?). people are unfortunately so damn apathetic and pessimistic and mindlessly negative in general, even about stuff that obviously matters to them, that in a virtual democracy, they would happily whore their votes out for a few bucks. so we will always have to fight corruption, virtual democracy won't do away with it, just move it around

i'm just sick of electing the asshole with the most corporate dollars, like we currently live under, and i happily embrace any corruption negatives in a virtual democracy system, as long as we get away from the outright prostitution for greed and ignoring of constituents that currently goes on at the legislative level

Re:brilliant political hack (1)

Darkman, Walkin Dude (707389) | more than 3 years ago | (#32827636)

Once people figure out they can vote more money for themselves, they do, see California for reference. If you want to ban corporate donations, ban corporate donations.

Re:brilliant political hack (2, Interesting)

$lashdot (472358) | more than 3 years ago | (#32828156)

so the minority decides issues, and then the majority wakes up the next morning and goes "what happened?" example, gay rights: the social conservatives will come out in force and drown out the gay votes, and even though the majority is in favor of gay rights, they simply won't get off their asses and do the right thing and vote for what is right because their own selfish interests are not immediately and obviously threatened. again, a problem, not a fatal one, but a real problem with virtual democracy

Well, "gay rights" encompasses a lot of things. When this gets narrowed down to just one issue, say for example, "gay marriage," you might find that the majority does not agree with you. For example, an article today about Hawaii's governor vetoing "gay civil unions," while it sort of supports your point about politicians being in the way, also reports, "Nationwide, voters have consistently rejected same-sex marriage. Five states -- Iowa, Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Vermont -- and the District of Columbia allow same-sex marriage, through judicial or legislative actions."(See, http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20100707/pl_nm/us_hawaii_gaymarriage [yahoo.com] )

So, in a state where the population has voted against gay marriage, but the judiciary has permitted it, is it the majority or the minority who is establishing the law over the objections of the other? How would the virtual representative have voted? I don't think that the "majority" is always as "progressive" as people imagine.

Forever and ever (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32828924)

Corruption in government is as normal, regular, and endless as the spinning of the earth. It's been that way since the dawn of centralized power, and it will be that way as long as government exists. I suggest you get used to it, because there is no solution. If there was, surely it would have been found by now.

Thousands of years have passed since the concept of government "by the people" was first put to test, and those thousands of years have converged on the same end result: corruption.

I know you're a dreamer, but it's time to face the cold hard truth of reality: government is corrupt and will always be corrupt, and there is absolutely nothing you can do about it.

I sure hope you're not still barking up the apathy tree when you're 80 years old, but then again I wouldn't be surprised. If you can find it in you, consider that corruption always comes from within, not from external forces (otherwise it would be coercion and not corruption).

Re:brilliant political hack (1)

Locke2005 (849178) | more than 3 years ago | (#32830420)

Are you aware of the fact that the Shift and Caps Lock keys on your keyboard are broken? Yes, I believe representative democracy is better than direct democracy for a lot of things. However, I do think we should be allowed to decide what purposes at least a percentage of our tax remittances are used for when we file our taxes. That would make it easy to determine which programs are unpopular with the taxpaying public.

Re:brilliant political hack (1)

cacba (1831766) | more than 3 years ago | (#32830440)

A proxy system that allows you to give your vote, by issue, to another. This has many benefits:

-a large amount of the votes still are cast
-doesnt require everyone to be an expert on everything
-if votes on one issue are concentrated in few enough hands, bargaining can occur

How to transition to this form of government? Use it for local elections, its small scale and mistakes wont have a large effect. The transparency created would be welcome.

Re:brilliant political hack (1)

mentil (1748130) | more than 3 years ago | (#32830638)

I have a potential solution to all three problems. Essentially, a random sample of constituents would be able to vote on any given issue; their voting would be compulsory, if they didn't vote they'd be removed from a list and wouldn't be allowed to vote again. This would prevent a vocal minority from being overrepresented while the majority is apathetic.

How to avoid fraud? Those who are selected to vote would be mailed an embedded system that is hard-coded to only be able to register votes with the voting server. It would use a modem (that dials in directly to the voting server) and self-signed certificates to avoid ISP blocking, vote sniffing or MITM attacks. I don't know how to mitigate DoSing the server, though. If it's kept secret who is able to vote for any given issue, bribery/intimidation would be more difficult; someone could claim "I'm not voting right now." Poor people accepting bribes to vote for Corrupt Party A is understandable when the alternative is getting no money and voting for Corrupt Party B. Actually voting on a specific law has a more concrete effect than one political party that can't be predicted to act better than another.

Re:brilliant political hack (1)

mdmkolbe (944892) | more than 3 years ago | (#32833642)

By the time a bill comes up for a vote most of the politics of has already happened. If you want your views represented, you have to get them in the bill while it is still in committee. Some of this is lobbying/persuading your fellow committee members that your ideas are good. Some parts amount to finding a compromise that will gather enough support and still be close to what you wanted. Other parts just boil down to political and procedural maneuvering (e.g. passing a measure that indirectly results in the policy you want).

Frankly I don't see how a "vote by the polls" senator can do any of that.

Democracy is a horrible idea. (2, Informative)

cziemian (1850620) | more than 3 years ago | (#32827378)

The very idea behind Senator Online is absurd and potentially dangerous for this reason: it is democratic. It supposes a government ought to do whatever the people want. We are so used to hearing "democratic" being used as synonymous with "something related to political theory and a good idea as well" that we forget it is merely majority tyrrany, two wolves and a lamb voting on what to have for lunch. The popular mob acts, uninformed, with caprice and malice, and forever seeks to loot with support of the government the other mobs unlucky enough to find themselves in the minority. Republicanism (the kind written with a lowercase 'r' when it is not first in a sentence) is the only just philosophy of government. We elect members from a more-or-less dedicated political class whose job it is to know the constitution and keep current with events and facts so that they may legislate, we hope, justly and in an informed way. We also space these elections out by several years so that, hopefully, those politicians can be judged not by whether they did what the rabble demanded of them, but by the results of their actions. Anyone who disagrees with me does himself well to read a history of Athens.

Re:Democracy is a horrible idea. (1)

shutdown -p now (807394) | more than 3 years ago | (#32827818)

We elect members from a more-or-less dedicated political class whose job it is to know the constitution and keep current with events and facts so that they may legislate, we hope, justly and in an informed way

Thank you for a dose of healthy laughter in the morning, this truly brought tears of joy to my eye.

"Stop throwing the Constitution in my face, it's just a goddamned piece of paper!"

You also score bonus points for using the word "rabble", though you missed the opportunity to mention "sheeple" somewhere. Rand disapproves.

This is a great idea (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32829088)

I can't understand how anybody can believe electing an individual that votes for the highest contributer is better than citizens deciding what the country's government should be doing.

Also, to those who say "how do you stop tampering" stop spreading FUD. If you really want, you can handle it the same way elections are handled using paper.
1) Go down to polling station, prove you are so-and-so.
2) Go to booth, instead of mark X, you clicky buttons on computer terminal.
3) Congrats you have voted.

This way, only polling stations have computers connected to vote. You secure access to the physical terminals, no tampering, yay!

Superdemocracy is not good (1)

mathimus1863 (1120437) | more than 3 years ago | (#32830412)

This is called superdemocracy. And it's not a very good form of democracy. Although reality may differ, politicians are elected to be in positions to make informed decisions about potential legislation, and protect the minority from being screwed by the majority. In other words, decmocracy as we have in the US is designed to allow the people making the decisions be in positions to receive and comprehend relevant information, evidence and expert testimony (and lobbying) before making such decisions. I'd be surprised if more than 10% of the population was [theoretically] as informed as these politicians are [supposed to be]. The whole reason to elect politicians is so that the masses can promote people they trust to make such decisions. If you think politicians are stupid, look at the vast majority of people who elected them.

Superdemocracy is also remarkably bad at protecting minorities from being screwed by majorities. It only takes 51% of the population to believe that deporting Mexicans without due process is okay, and then it's the law. There's no filtering in a super-democracy.

And on top of that, how is such an online-voting system supposed to handle matters that are considered secret to the country. Again, this is where people elected politicians they trust, who will be granted access to such sensitive information and make such decisions. How are military decisions supposed to be made when we have to wait for the internet polling period to end?

I'm a radical democrat, wouldn't vote for them (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32833466)

* I hardly ever agree with the majority. So voting for a party that promises to fulfill the will of the majority would be voting against my own interests.
* Democracy is very important, but it's not everything. Some things are more important than democracy: equality; human rights; personal liberties; access to food, water, housing, health care for all; etc. I will not vote for a party that refuses to have a stance on those fundamental political questions.
* Basing political decisions on online polls alone will widen the digital gap and further disenfranchise the offline population.
* The mere fact that they use Facebook for online polls is a reason to boycott them. Using Facebook _is_ a political stance.

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