Archive for the ‘Voting’
I haven’t cried yet, but I suspect I would have if I had been watching the live election coverage in the US. It also helped that I received the news when Marga woke me from deep slumber to inform me that “Barack won,” and to point out the clear evidence of blanket hogging. Everyone alive today needs to remember where they were when this historic event occurred. This is absolutely not something to be shrugged off as “boring politics”. What Barack Obama and his supporters have done is unprecedented in the annals of human history. Even if he had lost, his campaign and the passion behind it would not have gone unnoticed around the world. On behalf of American expatriates around the globe, I would like to thank Barack Obama and everyone who voted for him for restoring pride in my country of origin. Finally I can say “¡Soy americano!” in a loud voice.
[great, now I’m crying]
This might be my favorite political celebrity internet election video so far. I mean, it’s the only one with The Fonz! Could have used a little Fife, though.
My absentee ballot for the May 6, 2008, North Carolina Democratic Primary arrived finally. Like a good voter, I spent a couple hours putting each candidate’s name into Google and learning about their opinions on various issues. Some of them, like the humorously named Duskin Lassiter, lost my vote for simple reasons of web site design. And then there were those candidates that couldn’t even afford their own domain name, like Howard Staley, whose page is hosted on a website that advertises “Have A Website in 5 Minutes!” By far the most professional website by a non-presidential candidate was that of Kay Hagan, a woman running for Elizabeth Dole’s Senate seat.
Here’s a novel idea! What if, bear with me on this, voters actually chose their candidates based on the candidates’ stances on important issues! I know that sounds like complete insanity. It definitely has nothing to do with the high school popularity contest with which we choose our leaders.
I would like to call your attention to the stars at the top of each of my blog posts. These stars allow you to rank how well you like each post, thus giving me feedback when you think I’m being a genius or a jerk. Not that this blog is remotely democratic in content, but your feedback does mean something.
Since installing the plugin that enables this rating system, WP-PostRatings, and having seen it almost never being used, I have almost disabled it a few times. I have a theory that, at least for internet content, a “thumbs up or thumbs down”, Digg-style, voting system is probably best. Due to the hyperlinked nature of the internet, once you’re done reading a page, it’s so easy to leave and go somewhere else that no one ever sticks around long enough to place a vote of any sort on what they’ve just experienced. So if someone is voting, that means that they so strongly approve or disapprove of the content that they’ve taken time to vote. I begun to formulate this theory when I was noticing that all my blog post votes were either 1-star or 5-star. And that makes perfect sense. If you’re indifferent about the content, you just don’t vote! It’s very rare to see a 3-star vote.
I’ve just read this very interesting interview with author William Poundstone about voting systems and how the one used by the United States elections, “plurality voting”, is the absolute worst voting system ever invented.