Tuesday, 13 March 2012

Democracy Rebooted

It's quite rare that I write more than a blog post a month recently, never mind two on consecutive days but there we go. I had the rather joyful experience of receiving an email from the President of the Politics Society telling his members that "It has come to my attention that although none of the committee positions were contested, we are still able to hold an election though the 'Re-open Nominations' (RON) system." Though I am more than a little bit concerned that the President of the Politics Society was not aware of the possibility of running against RON, I am glad that an election is being run. However it seems to be that the President and current committee had no intention of letting the candidates display or justify their manifestos to us and just expected that we would vote for them regardless. Luckily the guy running for Academic Officer seems to be keen on getting stuff organised, hustings and the like, with an admirable commitment to democracy not usually found in a member of Labour Students.
Another issue I have is that the election isn't going to be conducted anonymously, we have to email our votes to the Politics Society. The anonymity of an election booth wasn't something I'd given much thought to before now, some votes that are conducted by secret ballot at Union Parliament don't really require the secrecy in my opinion, but I'm really put off by the idea that someone will see my votes and it will be blatantly obvious that it's me. I'd consider voting RON for some of the categories but I don't really want to do that knowing that someone will see it and probably imagine I am being unduly petty in doing so.

Whilst today may have improved my view of societies I can't say it has been a fantastic day for democracy either!

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