Don't want to post? Email me instead.

cavehillred AT yahoo.co.uk

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Stop voting like your Grandad did

One of the many problems with the Irish electoral system (whose PR-STV system is pretty excellent) is that too many people vote tribally.

Not tribally like in the headcount that passes for political elections in the North, but tribally nonetheless.

Even stupider is the fact that there is no overriding sovereignty issue dividing the tribes in the South. It's an antique inheritance from the civil war. Why else do people continually vote FF and FG? Primarily because they consider themselves of the respective tribe.

I always find it fascinating when people cut loose from inherited opinion and think for themselves. To this end, the extension of VoteMatch to include Northern Ireland is fascinating.

My results didn't surprise me:
SDLP 51%
Sinn Fein 45%
Alliance 37%
UUP 35%
DUP 28%

What did surprise me what how little I agree with ANY of the parties on major issues. Hence I shouldn't be surprised when half of what the SDLP choose to do infuriates me, and more than half of what the Shinners do.

I'd love to see a version for the Republic. I think probably three-quarters of the electorate might be surprised to find how little they agree with the people they vote for. Perhaps they might even change their voting patterns as a result.

Wouldn't that be revolutionary?

Well, it would beat holding a sit-in with five mates at the Anglo-Irish Bank on a Saturday.

No comments: