Freesteel Blog » Vote questions in US politics

Vote questions in US politics

Wednesday, July 9th, 2008 at 6:44 pm Written by:

I want this type of questioning to happen in the UK regarding our MPs during an election campaign. We need to make them answerable.

Here’s a clip from someone asking the candidate specifically about a vote he made in Congress.

The answer is not interesting, of course. But it gets asked, and asked a second time, until he can’t answer.

Here’s another site (called BushRubberStamp) matching up the votes of a representative in congress and the most unpopular president in the history of America.

This site is interesting because it contains a web-form to help you write letters to various newspapers. Contains a sidebar with guidelines:

1. Be Concise. Keep your letter to under 200 words. If it is too long, your most important point may be cut. Newspapers reserve the right to edit letters before publication. Our LTE form counts the words for you!
2. Make timely comments. If you are responding to an article or opinion piece, submit your letter as soon as possible. What matters to an editor now, may not matter next week.
3. Focus. The first sentence of your letter should explain why you are writing. Make it as easy as possible for the editorial staff and readers to understand the purpose of your letter.
4. State your point. Following your opening sentence, try to summarize your issue/argument, correction, or additional information in the next sentence.
5. Target your audience. Be sure to submit your letter to your local paper. Use local examples where possible.
6. Use plain language. Easy-to-understand language ensures your message will not be misunderstood.
7. Close Strong. Use your last sentence to make a strong statement.
8. Check. Proofread and check your spelling. Also review the guidelines for each newspaper to ensure that your letter conforms.

Oh yeah, here’s the ad, which is part of that same campaign.

I mean, it’s not perfect. The “93.6% of the time” doesn’t have a lot of meaning — the 6.4% left over might really really matter. But these things move towards the business where the actions done with our democratic mandate could begin to count more than the pretty face.

That’s the prima facie flaw with our common implementation of democracy — we can only vote for people, not policies; and those people elected are absolutely unconstrained in every way, and entirely within their rights to sell us out completely during their entire term, without any legal right to prevent it or be compensated.

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