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Thursday
May052011

No to AV because it's a short step to PR

I have just voted and it's 'No to AV' for me.

Over on The Free Society Tom Miers has this to say:

The AV debate is really as proxy for a debate about PR, and this is where my concerns come in ... The bottom line is that you get a nonsensensical muddle if you apply proportionality to government, and tampering with the means by which we elect MPs does nothing to correct.

PR as a voting system is not really about making things fairer, it is about reinforcing majorities and the legitimacy they have. It shifts the whole emphasis of politics to establishing what the majority thinks, trying to establish a ‘general will’ (as Rousseau had it) within society that can then be ruthlessly applied through the force of law.

Since no such will can in practice ever be found, you end up with a reinforced majority that is of course to the detriment of the minority. This damages the freedom of the individual, who is always in a minority of one.

Full article here.

See also: The democratic case against alternative voting (spiked)

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Reader Comments (4)

"Since no such will can in practice ever be found, you end up with a reinforced majority that is of course to the detriment of the minority. This damages the freedom of the individual, who is always in a minority of one."

er, FPTP has worked well in that regard then! Have we already forgotten New Labour's hideous assault on civil liberties - including an attempt to restrict trial by jury?

Thursday, May 5, 2011 at 11:08 | Unregistered CommenterMark Butcher

That AV won't really change the way the elected behave when given power isn't really an argument for throwing it out, but I agree the concept of 'fairness' is an illusion. People might be happier with it because it gives them a feeling they 'sort-of' voted for the lot who got in.

The real scandal of the bill of course is not even being put to the country - the reduction in seats, the gerry-mandering of boundaries and the swamping of the Lords with Tory stooges.

Thursday, May 5, 2011 at 14:35 | Unregistered Commentersimon (nsc)

First Choice: Tweedledum.

Second Choice: Tweedledee.

Third Choice: Tweedledum and Tweedleee.

Feedom of Choice.

Who needs it ?

Friday, May 6, 2011 at 6:35 | Unregistered CommenterMartin V

FTP : David Davis

AV: David Cameron

I take your point

Friday, May 6, 2011 at 10:44 | Unregistered CommenterSimon (nsc)

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