Saturday, October 18, 2008

My Experience as a Poll Clerk

I was a poll clerk for this past election. A 16-hour day for around minimum wage it wasn't worth it for the monetary reward, but I enjoyed it for the grounding experience it gave me.

I know that having a Masters degree and working for the government at the national office I can get caught up in the ivory tower/Ottawa bureaucrat. Even socializing with people who watch CPAC for fun or people who enjoy dinner parties, I have had a major wake-up call. I am not an ordinary Canadian.

Despite Jack Layton abusing the "ordinary Canadian" phrase, I did see these ordinary Canadians that politicians were referring to.

And while yes, the current economic situation is a "buying opportunity" for me, the reality is, it isn't for many people.

So would I do it again? I would probably be a deputy-returning officer (DRO) as I could handle the responsibility.

I encourage everyone to take part in the democratic process more than dropping your ballot into a box.

With a voter turnout of less than 60 per cent, I might have to agree with Andrew Coyne, that Our Electoral System is Broken:

If we must have five-party politics, let them at least be parties with real differences, and national appeal. Away with the system that guarantees the Bloc two-thirds of the seats in Quebec on the strength of little more than one-third of the vote. Away with the ghettos of Conservative Alberta, or Liberal Toronto, where it is scarcely worth campaigning, so predictable are the results. Away with "strategic voting," and other attempts to tell people they may not vote for the party they support, but must vote against the party they fear. Away with the disgraceful situation of a party winning almost a million votes, as the Greens did this time out, and getting zero seats.

Thursday, October 09, 2008

So you want to be Prime Minister?

There was an Obama campaign ad making fun of McCain's disability and it is alleged that Mr. Dion has a hearing problem. But, seriously if you can't do the job...or at least can't articulate how you would do the job, you shouldn't get the job.

Not that Dion believes in the merit principle....

Hat tip: Stephen Taylor