Author Topic: Elections  (Read 2178 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline X-Bellam & BC/TB (Bobby)

  • Former players
  • Regent
  • *****
  • Posts: 639
  • Regency: 33
Elections
« on: November 04, 2008, 10:00:05 pm »
Americans - stop reading about fictional politics and governing.  Go vote.  Then you can come back to the fiction.   ;)

Offline X-Osoerde (Alan)

  • The Dragon
  • Former players
  • Sovereign
  • ******
  • Posts: 1.394
  • Regency: 21
  • Gender: Male
Re: Elections
« Reply #1 on: November 05, 2008, 01:02:16 am »
I couldn't wait to vote.  I did it as soon as the polls opened in Massaschussettss.

Funny questions too...

A change in income tax (removal of it more or less)
A Pot law ('legalize' very small (1 ounce) of it)
A Dog Track Law (prohibit running dogs)
Yes, wyrmling, the meat is made all the more tender by armor...

Offline X-Roesone/ARR (Robert)

  • Former players
  • Regent
  • *****
  • Posts: 603
  • Regency: 18
  • Gender: Male
  • Arvour Raemel, Baron of Roesone
Re: Elections
« Reply #2 on: November 05, 2008, 01:13:18 am »
A change in income tax (removal of it more or less)

Well, considering its unconstitutional...  8)

A Pot law ('legalize' very small (1 ounce) of it)

LOL

A Dog Track Law (prohibit running dogs)

Say what?
Arvour Raemel, by the Grace of Haelyn Baron of Roesone etc, Champion of Cuiraecen

Offline X-SASI/Orthien Tane (Rune)

  • Former players
  • Scion
  • ***
  • Posts: 166
  • Regency: 12
  • Gender: Male
  • Maester Orthien Tane
Re: Elections
« Reply #3 on: November 05, 2008, 02:31:23 am »
Watching BBC and wondering if it's safe to go to bed soon...

Keeping my fingers crossed for Americans doing something right for a change ;D
Orthien Tane, Maester of Southern Anuire Shipping and Imports

Offline X-OIT (Joe)

  • Former players
  • Freeman
  • *
  • Posts: 13
  • Regency: 2
  • Ex-OIT
Re: Elections
« Reply #4 on: November 05, 2008, 06:58:20 pm »
I couldn't wait to vote.  I did it as soon as the polls opened in Massaschussettss.

Funny questions too...

A change in income tax (removal of it more or less)
A Pot law ('legalize' very small (1 ounce) of it)
A Dog Track Law (prohibit running dogs)

It really wasn't 'legalize' it, it just moved it to a civil offense from a criminal.
Formerly (Turn 60.5)
Narvelon Diem-Avan
Cardinal of the Orthodox Imperial Temple of Haelyn

Offline X-Osoerde (Alan)

  • The Dragon
  • Former players
  • Sovereign
  • ******
  • Posts: 1.394
  • Regency: 21
  • Gender: Male
Re: Elections
« Reply #5 on: November 05, 2008, 07:58:39 pm »
They take it and fine you 100 dollars.

That is tantamount to legalization IMO.
Yes, wyrmling, the meat is made all the more tender by armor...

Offline X-Tornilen/SM (John)

  • Former players
  • Freeman
  • *
  • Posts: 43
  • Regency: 4
  • Ex-Tornilen (SM)
Re: Elections
« Reply #6 on: November 07, 2008, 10:03:16 pm »
We've got our elections tonight down here in New Zealand - I have a bit riding on the result given that I work in our parliament. :)

The polls are consistently showing our conservative party with a healthy lead of our labour party (who have been in for three 3-year terms now).  However, we have a system similar to Germany's, so it really comes down to votes for likely coalition blocks, rather than for individual parties.  Polls still favour the conservatives there, but its much closer.  Conservatives are riding a mood for change, similar to what we saw in America.

Our political parties are quite moderate.  The conservatives have moved to a very centrist position over the last 2-3 years, labour is likewise quite centrist but have moved further to the left over the last 2-3 years.  We have a Green party (very left wing), a right wing party called Act, a couple fringe parties represented by only one MP who holds an electorate seat, and the Maori party (representing our indigenous people).
Formerly
Mary Tanar,
Duchess of Tornilen,
the Sword Mage of Anuire.

Offline X-Roesone/ARR (Robert)

  • Former players
  • Regent
  • *****
  • Posts: 603
  • Regency: 18
  • Gender: Male
  • Arvour Raemel, Baron of Roesone
Re: Elections
« Reply #7 on: November 08, 2008, 12:00:43 pm »
So, is the conservative victory good for you or not?
Arvour Raemel, by the Grace of Haelyn Baron of Roesone etc, Champion of Cuiraecen

Offline X-Mhoired (Dan)

  • Former players
  • Hero
  • **
  • Posts: 53
  • Regency: 5
  • Ex-Mhoried
Re: Elections
« Reply #8 on: November 08, 2008, 06:35:05 pm »
Hope your fellas win, John!
Here's a question for you: My dad-in-law have been talking about the lack of a viable third party in US politics. Do you think the multiple parties and subsequent coalitions are a beneficial thing, or does it give a smaller party disprportionate power based on their "swing votes"? Not to put you on the spot or anything , ;) just curious...
Mhor Droene Kavarra, the Red Colt
Ruler of Mhoried, Lord of Shieldhaven & Highrock
Riding Towards Duty

Offline X-Tornilen/SM (John)

  • Former players
  • Freeman
  • *
  • Posts: 43
  • Regency: 4
  • Ex-Tornilen (SM)
Re: Elections
« Reply #9 on: November 08, 2008, 09:12:27 pm »
So, is the conservative victory good for you or not?

Yeah, it is.  Looks like I'll have a new (and better paying) job within the next 2-3 weeks. :)

Hope your fellas win, John!
Here's a question for you: My dad-in-law have been talking about the lack of a viable third party in US politics. Do you think the multiple parties and subsequent coalitions are a beneficial thing, or does it give a smaller party disprportionate power based on their "swing votes"? Not to put you on the spot or anything , ;) just curious...

It's worth, I think, mentioning that in order for a political party to get into our parliament, it needs to win 5% of the popular vote (or one of their candidates can win a local constituency/electorate).  This means we don't get the large numbers of parties that you see in, say Italy, where they don't have a similar threshold.  This means our governing coalitions are usually formed around one strong major party and a couple minor parties.  So they're inherently more stable than in some other countries.

We've only had a proportional system since 1996 (we have 3-year parliamentary terms), so I think it's fair to say that we still maturing.  Earlier on we had a number of parties that were built around charismatic individuals rather than a solid policy/brand identity - as we know from playing Birthright, charismatic leaders leading their own faction/cult tend to engage in activities to make themselves the centre of attention.  When they gain real power, they often hold an influence disproportionate to their actual size/power.  We saw the same thing here - though as part of the evolutionary / maturing process, these parties are now falling by the wayside.  Last night, the most influential of these parties was kicked out of parliament and, given that their charismatic leader is likely to retire, we probably won't see them again.  Two other minor parties are down to just one MP and likely to disappear within one or two parliamentary terms.  So in that sense, I think it's fair to say that, yes, minor parties do wield disproportionate influence, but how disproportionate that influence is reduces over time - in simple terms, the voting public lose patience with minor parties that skew results.

However, the degree of disproportionate influence also depends on the strength and desperation of the major parties.  This time around the conservative party here is in a strong position (holding 59 seats out of a needed 62 by itself) and its coalition buddies are desperate to get rid of the left wing governing party, so likely won't make too many demands.  The labour party was desperate to retain power and was making all sorts of promises before the election to other parties which would have made any resulting government unwieldy and difficult to maintain.

In broad terms I think multiple parties are a good thing.  Our experience is that it reduces to an extent the hostile adversarial nature of politics (the two main parties are still quite adversarial towards each other, but everyone generally tries to work with the minor parties).  It also increases the focus to more of an issues-based process, rather than an ideological one, because the governing party often needs the votes of different minor parties at different times.  Things also tend to take longer to get done, because the main governing party often needs to talk to a number of parties to get their votes on individual issues before they can act - and the horse-trading that goes on often moderates government policy.  This also means, of course, that the main governing party sometimes can't respond to a problem quickly, nor can it impose a more radical agenda (which can be either a good or a bad thing, depending on your point of view).

I do tend to think that if you have a 'first-past-the-post" system where the party that gets more votes (or more electoral college seats) forms the executive all by itself, then minor parties have much less influence.  In proportional systems where parties roughly get a number of seats according to their percentage of the popular vote, their influence is greater simply because they have a greater presence within the legislature (and those in coalition get a presence in the executive).
Formerly
Mary Tanar,
Duchess of Tornilen,
the Sword Mage of Anuire.

Offline X-Haelyn's Aegis/RK (Andy)

  • Former players
  • Regent
  • *****
  • Posts: 913
  • Regency: 42
  • Gender: Male
Re: Elections
« Reply #10 on: November 08, 2008, 11:27:56 pm »
I do tend to think that if you have a 'first-past-the-post" system where the party that gets more votes (or more electoral college seats) forms the executive all by itself, then minor parties have much less influence.  In proportional systems where parties roughly get a number of seats according to their percentage of the popular vote, their influence is greater simply because they have a greater presence within the legislature (and those in coalition get a presence in the executive).

I think that the skew caused by the system is considered a feature not a bug locally.  We have 2 1/2 (maybe 1/4) parties in the UK and first-past-the-post system has encouraged large majorities, these majorities then let the ruling party (which may have less than half the votes) to drive through their manifesto with little in the way of  impediments.

This may have worked in less organised days by recognising shifts as they emerged, discouraging cosiness in the political theater and ensuring that the majority party could enact the manifesto that won the majority vote, but now it fails because parties shift votes between regions with postal votes to get a slight edge over the other party and thus a disproportionate influence.

Let's not mention the postal voting scams that are becoming endemic...
Robhan Khaiarén
High Marshal of Haelyn's Aegis
Work hard, walk with honour, be justly rewarded

Offline DM B

  • Green Knight
  • Deity
  • Emperor
  • *
  • Posts: 5.210
  • Regency: 51
  • Gender: Male
    • Twilightpeaks.net - Hone of Ruins of Empire
Re: Elections
« Reply #11 on: November 09, 2008, 07:19:29 am »
...but then again the UK is the last remaining core fragment of a decadent and long-lost Empire...much like Anuire :)
DM Bjørn

Offline X-Mhoired (Dan)

  • Former players
  • Hero
  • **
  • Posts: 53
  • Regency: 5
  • Ex-Mhoried
Re: Elections
« Reply #12 on: November 09, 2008, 12:25:28 pm »
Wow... that's a pretty comprehensive post, John, thanks for taking the time to write it up!
Mhor Droene Kavarra, the Red Colt
Ruler of Mhoried, Lord of Shieldhaven & Highrock
Riding Towards Duty

Offline X-Roesone/ARR (Robert)

  • Former players
  • Regent
  • *****
  • Posts: 603
  • Regency: 18
  • Gender: Male
  • Arvour Raemel, Baron of Roesone
Re: Elections
« Reply #13 on: November 09, 2008, 01:02:08 pm »
We also have the proportionate system and the 5% threshold and the way it works in practice is that the party that gets, say 30% of the popular vote, usually gets 40-45% of the seats in parliament, thanks to "dear" mr. d'Honte and his method of seats distribution. Since independence (1991) the conservatives (earlier right, now center right) have had three terms in office, and the left coalition had once.

The left coalition was largely ineffective because the 5 parties (social democrats + 4 minor parties) kept bickering (i.e. minor parties blackmailing) but also because the conservatives claim to have a "monopoly" on national interests. So, whenever the left tried to engage in reforms, the right would start organizing protests and shout "treason." When the conservatives won again, they did those same reforms, but, then again, "whatever they do is in the national interest" 
Arvour Raemel, by the Grace of Haelyn Baron of Roesone etc, Champion of Cuiraecen

Offline X-Tornilen/SM (John)

  • Former players
  • Freeman
  • *
  • Posts: 43
  • Regency: 4
  • Ex-Tornilen (SM)
Re: Elections
« Reply #14 on: November 10, 2008, 03:49:45 am »
We also have the proportionate system and the 5% threshold and the way it works in practice is that the party that gets, say 30% of the popular vote, usually gets 40-45% of the seats in parliament, thanks to "dear" mr. d'Honte and his method of seats distribution.

Our conservative party got 45.5% of the popular vote and that has given them 59 seats in parliament (out of 122 seats).  The right wing party got 5 seats and a centrist party another one.  Together they have 65 seats and a clear majority.

Now its just a matter of nutting out precise coalition details, but don't expect that to take long (certainly done this week).
Formerly
Mary Tanar,
Duchess of Tornilen,
the Sword Mage of Anuire.