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October 6, 2008 | by  | in News |
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Idiots guide to voting in the 2008 election

Firstly enrol to vote. You know those guys who are in the van on the corner of Willis and Cuba every weekend? They are your electoral friends. Go see them, or head to the closest post office, online at
www.elections.org.nz. Legally you need to be enrolled to vote. You can get a fine, or even worse if you have political scientist friends you may be castigated and used as an example of why democracy is flawed.

Secondly you need to get some idea about who you want to vote for. Maybe on some voyage of discovery early in your youth, unshackled by the inhibitions of reality, you made the folly of becoming a left-winger. Or perhaps after a troubled childhood, bullied in the playground and possibly suffering from short man syndrome, you reached the conclusion that you were a raging righty. You hopefully have some idea which party most aligns to your internal voice so this is a good place to start.

With MMP you have a plethora of choices. Lefties could vote for Labour, the Greens, Progressives, or Alliance. If you’re a righty you could vote for National, ACT, Kiwi Party or the Libertarianz. If you’re a dirty fencesitter you could vote for United Future. If you’re tangata whenua, or just down for whatever you could vote for the Maori Party. The market for political parties is bloated and even sadomasochists have a dedicated party (Workers’ Party, not yet registered).

Go to their websites. Go to public meetings. If you can make it to the Aro Hall debate you will enjoy it immensely. Read newspapers. Read blogs. Get information about the people and parties who you’re thinking about voting for. Look at their policies. Look at what they have done in the past.

Thirdly just think about it, think think about it.

Fourthly go to the polling booth and vote. In Wellington polling booths are generally no more than a 15 minute walk away. Abstention is an option, but it is way more fun to go and draw pictures on the ballot paper or write your own name on the slip and put a tick next to it.

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About the Author ()

The editor of this fine rag for 2009.

Comments (3)

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  1. Oliver Woods says:

    And don’t forget the Residents Action Movement (RAM)! We’re a progressive left party with a difference.

    And we promise we’re not sadomasochists, Jackson!

    Cheers,
    Oliver Woods
    RAM Candidates Co-Leader

  2. Jackson Wood says:

    “And we promise we’re not sadomasochists”

    Sadomasochism, n; pronounced \ˌsā-(ˌ)dō-ˈma-sə-ˌki-zəm, ˌsa-, -ˈma-zə-\; the derivation of pleasure from the infliction of physical or mental pain either on others or on oneself.

    One has to wonder Oliver. Politics is generally experimentation in S & M on an aspiring politicians behalf. I generally prefer my politicians to be heavier on the side of the masochism than the sado part. But prove me wrong!

  3. hana says:

    In the race to the moment of truth people are still deciding who to
    vote for as the next most influential person in the world.
    In order to make the decision easier, a dutch company called
    Kieskompas has developed the Electoral Compass. This voting advice
    application is one of a kind. All the important issues are embedded in
    the application that makes it easy to see where you fit in the
    political compass. To what extent are you progressive (social liberal)
    or traditional (social conservative) or left or right in economical
    terms. And which candidate do you relate to the most.

    If you haven’t decided who to vote for than take the test.
    http://www.electoralcompass.com

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