Canadian Electoral Reform Survey - Please Pass it On!

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Danielle Pepin
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Canadian Electoral Reform Survey - Please Pass it On!

Postby Danielle Pepin » 21 Sep 2016, 18:25

Here's the Canadian Electoral reform survey. If you are Canadian please tell them how much better Single-Transferable vote system is for making every vote count as well as ensure most proportional seating in Parliament. Please also pass it on!

https://survey-sondage-hoc.parl.gc.ca/TakeSurveyPage.aspx?s=0d6f61512d6a49108ec8370a88135ce7&tsid=9cd0ab8f2fe646c2a66307a7a2ac53a4&c=en-CA
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Re: Canadian Electoral Reform Survey - Please Pass it On!

Postby Hekla » 21 Sep 2016, 18:47

It seems to let you fill it out even if you are not a Canadian citizen as long as you live in Canada.

Although, who knows, maybe I'll get to the end and it'll throw up an error message.

EDIT: Yep. It's fine. It asks if you are a Canadian citizen, and even though I ticked no, it let me fill the whole thing out.
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Re: Canadian Electoral Reform Survey - Please Pass it On!

Postby NebulosDisconcertion » 25 Sep 2016, 09:45

It sounds bad even to me when I say so; but I wish they'd stop asking and just do it.
People are afraid of change and resistant to education, if the government keeps asking they're just going to say 'no, actually, just leave it the way it is.'
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Re: Canadian Electoral Reform Survey - Please Pass it On!

Postby Arclight_Dynamo » 25 Sep 2016, 10:02

Well, that has been the experience at the provincial level.

Honestly, what I'd prefer is a referendum by ranked ballot to decide which new system they'll implement. The option to retain FPTP would not be on the ballot.

Then you run an election under the new system.

After the election, you hold a second referendum with two options: retain the new system, or revert to FPTP.

Bam. You get social licence and public consultation without FPTP having an advantage due to inertia or fear of the unknown.

Now, as to other electoral reform issues... I'm deeply concerned about internet voting. I just don't trust that any online system could be secure - just look at the concerns around the American election and its voting machines with respect to Russian interference.

And even if an online voting system could be made secure, there'd be no way to assure people that is was secure. Confidence in the validity of electoral outcomes, and thus the legitimacy of the Parliament elected, would be seriously eroded. Don't do it, I say.
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Re: Canadian Electoral Reform Survey - Please Pass it On!

Postby Master Gunner » 25 Sep 2016, 11:23

Even assuming it is possible to have secure online voting, I have zero faith in any organization to actually implement such a system. Having eyes on physical pieces of paper is (oddly enough, in this day and age) the most practical way to secure the transit and collation of votes.
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Re: Canadian Electoral Reform Survey - Please Pass it On!

Postby Arclight_Dynamo » 25 Sep 2016, 12:24

Oh, and of course the other proposal being debated is mandatory voting.

I'm... not sure about this one. I can see arguments for both sides (so long as mandatory voting comes with the option to spoil or decline your ballot).

What do we all think?
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Re: Canadian Electoral Reform Survey - Please Pass it On!

Postby AdmiralMemo » 25 Sep 2016, 14:59

Master Gunner wrote:Even assuming it is possible to have secure online voting, I have zero faith in any organization to actually implement such a system. Having eyes on physical pieces of paper is (oddly enough, in this day and age) the most practical way to secure the transit and collation of votes.
Have you seen this video about electronic voting?
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Re: Canadian Electoral Reform Survey - Please Pass it On!

Postby Master Gunner » 25 Sep 2016, 17:20

Arclight_Dynamo wrote:Oh, and of course the other proposal being debated is mandatory voting.

I'm... not sure about this one. I can see arguments for both sides (so long as mandatory voting comes with the option to spoil or decline your ballot).

What do we all think?


I'm for some acknowledgement of one's "civic duty" to vote, but I think opting out of voting should also be a clear possibility. Like when you get your get your voter information card, you can check a box and stick it back in the mailbox, and that counts as declining the ballot if you don't show up to the polls.

AdmiralMemo wrote:Have you seen this video about electronic voting?

I've seen that before, and yes it covers a lot of my general concerns (though by no means all of them).
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Re: Canadian Electoral Reform Survey - Please Pass it On!

Postby Phailhammer » 26 Sep 2016, 15:33

Arclight_Dynamo wrote:Oh, and of course the other proposal being debated is mandatory voting.

I'm... not sure about this one. I can see arguments for both sides (so long as mandatory voting comes with the option to spoil or decline your ballot).

What do we all think?


This is basically what it's like in Australia. It's only compulsory to turn up and get your name marked off (if you're not pre-polling/absentee voting); what you do with the ballot papers once you receive them is your own problem.
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Re: Canadian Electoral Reform Survey - Please Pass it On!

Postby AdmiralMemo » 26 Sep 2016, 18:21

I want to eat them for fiber. ;-)
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Re: Canadian Electoral Reform Survey - Please Pass it On!

Postby Arclight_Dynamo » 26 Sep 2016, 19:49

Phailhammer wrote:This is basically what it's like in Australia. It's only compulsory to turn up and get your name marked off (if you're not pre-polling/absentee voting); what you do with the ballot papers once you receive them is your own problem.


Yes, and Australia is the usual point of comparison when mandatory voting is discussed here - I imagine that if we go that route, we'd adopt large portions of the Australian model.

The one thing that I'd really want to be part of the system if we go for it, though, is declining the ballot.

That has a very specific meaning and is only available in certain elections at the provincial level, including Ontario elections. Instead of taking the ballot you show up, say "I decline the ballot," you have your name marked on the voter register, and the declined ballot is recorded as declined.

It think that's important. It's a separate tally from spoiled ballots, which may simply have been filled out incorrectly. A declined ballot, on the other hand, is a specific act and expression of displeasure. That should be recorded, and recorded separately from improper or damaged ballots because the act and expression (essentially, voting "None of the above") are themselves important.

But, again... I'm not sure mandatory voting is a good idea in the first place. So...
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Re: Canadian Electoral Reform Survey - Please Pass it On!

Postby empath » 27 Sep 2016, 08:37

Well, mandatory voting with your specific option to decline sounds like a decent compromise. A person gets counted, and still has the alternative having to 'choose the best of a bad lot'.

Most of the ideas the survey offered has potential; I will be forthright and state that I usually answered #4 - 'agree somewhat' to statements about reforming to these improvements over FPTP.

...with the exception of electronic voting; that was a STRONG "NO".

The more I work with computers, and learn of programming, networking and the like, the less confidence I have in anything regarding 'computer security'.

My ethos regarding computer/network security is "your data can ALWAYS be accessed by others if they have enough desire to get through whatever security is in place". And I feel there are two ways to discourage a hacker from breaking your security: 1) increase the effort to circumvent said security, or 2) reduce the desire for/value of the 'reward' waiting on the other side; I have laughable security for my personal docs, but unless someone REALLY wants some mediocre touristy snapshots or some shitty fanfic, no one is going to WANT to break in, anyway.

...on the other hand, there is IMMEASURABLE value to what's hiding on inside a voting machine, and - given the history of what people have done to fix/rig/compromise 'old school paper ballot' elections through history, you can't say that no one is going to want to break through electronic voting security.
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Re: Canadian Electoral Reform Survey - Please Pass it On!

Postby Arclight_Dynamo » 27 Sep 2016, 09:37

Actually... it just occurred to me that declining the ballot, as it is currently implemented, has problems. Specifically, declining the ballot is not done secretly, as selecting a candidate is. You need to tell the electoral official that you decline the ballot. Not only do they hear and know your choice, so does everyone else nearby.

In a country with a secret ballot, that's a no-no.

Luckily, it's easy to fix: just add an "I decline the ballot" option on the ballot, and have the elector select it if they want to. Everything else can remain the same.

Also, I just came across this article in the Ottawa Citizen. I think it's worth a quick read: Eight not-actually-all-that-complicated ways to improve our electoral system
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Re: Canadian Electoral Reform Survey - Please Pass it On!

Postby Master Gunner » 27 Sep 2016, 13:24

Yeah, declining the ballot has to be a secret choice.

In regards to the security of electronic voting again - I've seen some people say that well if banks are secure enough to use online, why not voting? Banks are obviously high-value targets where security is of utmost importance, after all.

Well, the Secret Ballot is one of the big problems with securing electronic voting. With banks, it's pretty easy to audit your account for unauthorized access - if you see odd credit card charges, or numbers that don't add up with what you remember, then you know something's wrong. With voting, once you press "Submit" you have to trust the big black box to do its job properly, with zero way of checking up on it. So it's impossible to tell if something's gone wrong.
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Re: Canadian Electoral Reform Survey - Please Pass it On!

Postby Arclight_Dynamo » 27 Sep 2016, 13:59

Exactly. But, more than that, electronic voting systems are much higher-profile targets than banks.

Is Russia going to hack into your TD account to steal a few tens of thousands of dollars? Of course not. But will they hack an electronic voting system to bring about an outcome favourable to them? You bet your ass they will.

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