Information Landmine

"The Americans keep telling us how successful their system is. Then they remind us not to stray too far from our hotel at night." - An un-named EU trade representative quoted during international trade talks in Denver, Colorado, 1997.

Friday, May 07, 2010

In which the author opines on electoral reform from a position of ignorance...

So the Tory plan for electoral reform consists of re-jigging the boundaries to make sure they're all more equal sizes? Because, you know, the old ones were unfair.

I can't be the only one who sees a flaw with that plan: if you're worry is that districts are unequal, you're either going to have to stop people moving out of their electoral districts, or keep changing voting boundaries in order to keep up with their movements. So assuming they don't want to institute Chinese-style population controls, the Tory plan for voting reform is essentially to have the Parliament redraw the boundaries every five years or so. To think that was a good idea, you'd not only have to be the sort of tit who pretends to believe that the Tory sense of British fair play will stop them from gerrymandering the fuck out of the boundaries this time, you'd also have to believe that every party ever elected from now until the end of the British Parliamentary system is going to be cut from the same cloth.

Any takers on that one?


Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think that's just a knee jerk reaction from the tories that will be swept under the carpet once the dust has settled. But more importantly when's that British parliamentary system ending?

09 May, 2010 22:28  
Blogger Uncle Petie said...

You might be right - it would get them more seats for their votes - and they could kind of use those - but maybe now's not the time for them to start rocking that particular boat.

On the other hand, if Clegg's got half a clue, sweeping it under the carpet won't be an option. My feeling is that they'll try and offer equalising the districts under a banner of "It's a fair compromise that respects the British love of strong government."

The Parliamentary system will effectively end the day they put Michael Gove in charge of electoral reform. Can't be any more specific than that.

10 May, 2010 14:47  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

They've put him in charge of education. And the first thing he does is change the department's name from 'Department for Children, Schools and Families' to just 'Education'.

Most probably rightly so on in this - could possibly be part of £6bn of efficiency saving to be squeezed out of the public sector.

He looks very dogma driven which may be his down fall given it's a coalition government.

12 May, 2010 23:41  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Regarding boundary changes, I suggest that you look up the history of how often and when they have been changed and by whom - meaning which political party - before deciding that one party is any more holy than another.

21 May, 2010 15:38  
Blogger Uncle Petie said...

I wasn't really claiming that one party was more holy than another - I'm just saying that the method itself is suspect as a way of introducing fairness.

26 May, 2010 12:34  
Blogger Uncle Petie said...

Also, if I looked up the history of how often and when political boundaries had changed, that would make a nonsense of the title.

27 May, 2010 14:35  

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