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Call to action Call out to atheist activism on polls, news articles, petitions or other injustice. Let everyone know we have a voice.

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  #451  
Old 11th December 2017, 06:23 PM
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Default Re: Marriage Equality is a Call to Action for the non-Religious

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Point. I have no idea which particular Politicians electorates voted yes or no, unless it was brought up in wider media, used as a talking point or attack for instance, so apart from those who made a point, and that was what it was all about, I have no idea if any of the yes voters electorates voted no, or whether any of the no voters electorates voted yes. And you know, I have no interest in finding out!

One of the things I have always thought strange in politics is that the population at large are entitled to a secret ballot, but politicians have to put up their hands and say "yes it's me over here, I'm the homophobe" or vice versa, unless of course they want to make their positions clear and announce which way they are voting.

Now we also have to consider, those nine didn't have to leave the room to abstain! They could have sat there and just not voted, the leaving the room bit was theatrics, it was all about making a point knowing that they had no chance of getting their way and saying "this isn't finished."

So no, I am not going to criticise any yes voters whose electorates voted no, nor critcise any no voters whose electorates voted yes, but I am going to criticise those who used the vote to make a theatrical point, even if the only real point they made is that they aren't worthy of being our representatives!
It depends on what type of democracy one wants, I fear. There is no point in have a member that votes the way her/his electorate votes. The general population won't have access to all the facts, especially secret ones. What the rep is supposed to do is make an informed decision knowing all the facts, and the general sentiments of the electorate. Otherwise there is no point in having a rep, you could just practice direct democracy where everyone voted on policy and law.
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  #452  
Old 12th December 2017, 10:13 AM
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Default Re: Marriage Equality is a Call to Action for the non-Religious

How the electorates of the abstainers voted, just for the record.
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  #453  
Old 12th December 2017, 01:34 PM
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Default Re: Marriage Equality is a Call to Action for the non-Religious

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@WAS: I did lie there briefly. last night, thinking of the new Member for Groom (narrowly NO), who voted YES.

Perhaps the nub of the thing is in its non-binding nature?

It seems to me that the non-binding nature of the matter relates to the inability of the Parliament to bind itself, ie a process and constitutional matter.


My issue is a moral one: relating to people who said "we must let the people decide this", and the people having decided, didn't follow through.


Thus, the commitments made by those who set the wretched thing up add an extra layer to the (somewhat irrelevant, I think) question of whether individual electorates voted this or that way.
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  #454  
Old 12th December 2017, 01:37 PM
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Default Re: Marriage Equality is a Call to Action for the non-Religious

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stevebrooks said View Post
Point. I have no idea which particular Politicians electorates voted yes or no, unless it was brought up in wider media, used as a talking point or attack for instance, so apart from those who made a point, and that was what it was all about, I have no idea if any of the yes voters electorates voted no, or whether any of the no voters electorates voted yes. And you know, I have no interest in finding out!

FWIW there were some western Syd ALP-held electorates that voted "no" but their members still voted 'yes'.


This (the no votes, not what the members did) led to a short flurry of attacks on immigrants and Muslims.

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One of the things I have always thought strange in politics is that the population at large are entitled to a secret ballot, but politicians have to put up their hands and say "yes it's me over here, I'm the homophobe" or vice versa, unless of course they want to make their positions clear and announce which way they are voting.

Secret ballots for voters are necessary to avoid pressure on voters. Conversely, politicians need to be accountable for the way they vote.
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  #455  
Old 12th December 2017, 01:42 PM
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Default Re: Marriage Equality is a Call to Action for the non-Religious

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Darwinsbulldog said View Post
It depends on what type of democracy one wants, I fear. There is no point in have a member that votes the way her/his electorate votes. The general population won't have access to all the facts, especially secret ones. What the rep is supposed to do is make an informed decision knowing all the facts, and the general sentiments of the electorate. Otherwise there is no point in having a rep, you could just practice direct democracy where everyone voted on policy and law.
in general I would agree. but on such occasions where we do go out and ask the public, I think it behooves reps to vote in accordance. they are elected and paid to represent their electorate, no matter what their personal views are. and on the rare occasion where the electorate actually gets to voice an opinion, they should represent that opinion.

Granted that there are certain freedoms MPs are entitled to, just like ordinary citizens. I don't think being an MP should exclude you from these entitlements. and without getting into a debate whether - for example - Abbott could vote 'no' under 'freedom of religion', I think that if I were in his electorate (or anyone else's for that matter), I would not look at his decisions favourably.
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  #456  
Old 14th December 2017, 11:48 AM
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Default Re: Marriage Equality is a Call to Action for the non-Religious

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in general I would agree. but on such occasions where we do go out and ask the public, I think it behooves reps to vote in accordance. they are elected and paid to represent their electorate, no matter what their personal views are. and on the rare occasion where the electorate actually gets to voice an opinion, they should represent that opinion.

Granted that there are certain freedoms MPs are entitled to, just like ordinary citizens. I don't think being an MP should exclude you from these entitlements. and without getting into a debate whether - for example - Abbott could vote 'no' under 'freedom of religion', I think that if I were in his electorate (or anyone else's for that matter), I would not look at his decisions favourably.
It is a difficult question. That sorts of gets us into the "is-ought" conundrum. An honest, informed electorate would weed out these bad eggs by selection at the ballet box.

An elected politician should have access to more and better intelligence than the average voter who keeps herself/himself informed, never mind the secret/confidential stuff [sometimes necessary but often not].

The old libertarian idea of self-interest as a metric for good public policy and law does not work. Sometimes, we should vote for something that is not in our individual interests, but what is best for the community.

Hypothetical! Say there was a religious politician who sees the benefits of strict secularism and realises that religious freedom is just a euphemism or smoke-screen for religious privilege. So say he/she votes against what his religious electorate wants?

That informed decision, while seemingly against their wants, is actually to their benefit, because only a strictly fair and secular state can protect the rights of all, including all religious freedoms [although religious privilege will have to go].

To me such a decision would be ethical sensible, show leadership, and be acting in the best long term interests of all, including those whose wishes were defied.
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  #457  
Old 14th December 2017, 11:57 AM
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Default Re: Marriage Equality is a Call to Action for the non-Religious

@Dr Pupp: Fine line between what you describe and paternalism. The definition of "long-term benefit" must be clear, which probably dictates a more transparent process, for accountability's sake.

I know of awful things done for (Group)'s "own good".

I'll just smooth that pillow on the way out.
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  #458  
Old 14th December 2017, 02:22 PM
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Default Re: Marriage Equality is a Call to Action for the non-Religious

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The Irreverent Mr Black said View Post
@Dr Pupp: Fine line between what you describe and paternalism. The definition of "long-term benefit" must be clear, which probably dictates a more transparent process, for accountability's sake.

I know of awful things done for (Group)'s "own good".

I'll just smooth that pillow on the way out.
I agree Mr Black, which is why I said it was a difficult issue.

In some sense, I do agree with Abbott and co, but not for their reasons. If you know what I mean. To me personally, Marriage Equality is a non-issue. Of course the answer should have been yes. And it was. But I refer to what I said above, politicians represent us, but have to consider wider issues than just a mere yes.

The fact that such concerns are religious is neither here nor there. I yearn for a truly and strictly secular state, because it is the only thing that protect religious freedoms, including the right to be non-religious.

The issue here, is what sort of system of government we want. There is no point in elected leaders if they are just to parrot [for good or ill] the wishes of the electorate.

Leaders [by definition] must lead. Sometimes this means persuading or making people do what they do not want to do.

Two things:-

1. People think a certain way because that is what religions and/or cultures dictate, rather than by reason and evidence.

2. Tragedy Of The Commons: What might be good or right or acceptable for individuals may harm society.

In principle I support the right for someone to take a dump in a river. I think it is gross, but never mind. But what if a million, or a billion people do it? It has health consequences for people downstream. [I am assuming a basic society here without proper water supplies].
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