Views: Why People are Not Voting
Evidence of why so many people have stopped voting in elections points to the problem of the political process being dominated by parties that operate as a cartel. These parties perpetuate a system of cartel party governments that are able to rule by decree and operate a revolving door for ministers, advisors, high level civil servants and the like to switch back and forth between their government jobs and high level jobs in private industry. Very self-serving conflict of interest rules facilitate this process that everyday people understand as blatant conflict of interest.
There is also plenty of evidence that the cartel parties aim for very carefully calculated numbers of votes in specific ridings – known as microtargeting – basing their work on huge databases that indicate who is most likely to cast a ballot for them or for a rival candidate, or which issues constituents support that should become buzzwords in a campaign. In fact, because this micro-targeting works best when there is a low voter turnout of “known entities” and no wild cards, evidence points to these parties not wanting a higher turnout. The larger the voter turnout, the more difficult it is for their micro-targeting strategies to work.
Alongside this is voter suppression that occurs when election campaigning is no longer a public event but a one-on-one relationship with specific potential voters through Facebook and the like. This gives rise to an overall suppression of the people’s participation in political affairs. It is also deliberately fostered by the electoral laws, most notably in the form of legislation that reduces anyone but registered political parties and candidates in an election to “third parties” that have to register with the state as “advertisers” to be permitted to incur expenses to “target” electors with their “message.” Meanwhile unions and other organizations have been blocked from using their resources to directly assist candidates or parties they support.
The rich nonetheless are able to use their control over the media and domination of the parties with seats in the previous legislature to dictate the agenda for the next government and what are called election issues that they attribute to “voters.” Only the cartel parties and candidates are permitted into official debates which access a collective audience. Everything else is suppressed or silenced.