Tuesday, September 17, 2013
CLIVE PALMER + valid point in regards to voting system
I have to agree with Clive Palmer’s sentiments in regards to our antiquated voting system. Why in this age in which we use social communication platforms, make job applications on line, participate in on line forums, ‘like’ YouTube videos, do just about anything on a computer, IPhone or other devises, are we required to front up in real life and use pencil and paper to vote?
Conspiracy theories aside, such as the notion that pencils are supplied because lead can be erased, or pieces of paper mislaid, or worse still, destroyed to fix the election results, are incongruous, however, they vaporize alongside absurdest statements that maintain it would be difficult to change from the old system to the a newer and more refined electronic voting system.
Rubbish! The government could change this and implement something more refined if they really wanted to. Surely a new system would be more accurate, would be easier for those Australians who live overseas, are going overseas or interstate on the day or who are sick or infirmed. It would also mean that individuals employed by the Australian Electoral Commission wouldn't have to source potential polling booths that provide access for those in wheelchairs. Wouldn’t it also mean that the results would be known a lot faster, for there would be no waiting for postal votes? No more waiting in long lines, no more having to be bombarded on the day with last minute approaches by representatives of the major parties with their ‘how to vote’ leaflets, no more, no more!
OK, so the 70,000 people employed in voting booths on the day and many people in the Australian Electoral Commission would lose their jobs and those companies who supply the paper, pencils and in this recent election, plastic magnifying glasses would also suffer a loss. The printers contracted to print the ballot papers would also miss out, as would the Primary Schools who make money from the hire of their halls by the Australian Electoral Commission and who also hold fundraising sausage sizzle’s on Election Day to boost their funds.
Surely the $160M that it currently costs to run an election could be better spent on developing an electronic voting system. If the University of Melbourne could develop its site Vote Compass, which had over 1 Million Australians check out where their views sat within Australia’s political landscape, then surely the government with all its resources could develop a sophisticated platform that couldn’t be hacked and would provide, quick, reliable information and reflect the true wishes of the Australian people. There are about 8 Million people in Australia (that’s about three quarters of the 13 Million who must compulsorily vote) who have an internet connection and those who don’t have the connection at home can easily access a computer with internet connection at a local library.