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ACT Government to consider lowering the voting age

Ralph 26 September 2007 76

The ABC notes that a report has been tabled in the ACT Legislative Assembly – recommending that the Government consider lowering the voting age to 16.

Only in the ACT can you expect such loopy proposals. Such a policy would be a boon to fringe parties like the Greens, who often have the younger, naive, voters captured with their idealistic rhetoric.


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76 Responses to ACT Government to consider lowering the voting age
captainwhorebags captainwhorebags 4:43 pm 27 Sep 07

Can anyone give a reasonable argument as to why 16 is a good voting age as opposed to 18, 14, 15 etc?

A cutoff age is always going to risk marginalising those who are just below it. Considering the infrequency of elections (particularly for the ACT LA), changing the voting age could still have fuck all impact anyway.

GnT GnT 3:52 pm 27 Sep 07

“right-leaning as I mature”

Isn’t that an oxymoron?

Ralph Ralph 3:34 pm 27 Sep 07

JB can attest that I am not him, and that I am in fact a real person, just becoming increasingly hawkish and right-leaning as I mature. I’m sure we will have the pleasure some time soon.

The purpose is to point out the absurdity of some of the loopy things you usually only ever hear about in the ACT. I know that some readers here, when hearing such suggestions, nod with head tilted and give considered thought to such absurdities.

Gungahlin Al Gungahlin Al 3:00 pm 27 Sep 07

I don’t know if it is just here, but RA is proving near impossible to get any pages coming up on today…

On this topic, the original post is very much how JB sometimes wrote…hmmm

And Ralph so deliberately goes out of the way to bait people I sometimes wonder if – like the former “Big Al”, Ralph is another construct designed to use outrageous statements to haul right-thinking people out of apathy…?

I have but one observation: what is wrong with being idealistic? Better than bitter and twisted I reckon.

astrojax astrojax 2:40 pm 27 Sep 07

the concept of discussing voting age at all indicates a dissatisfaction with the system somewhere… i rekkun we need to include a more comprehensive ‘civics’ in the curriculum, from primary school on.

how many 32 year olds (just to double the age) can tell you how our govt system works? esp outside the ACT??

Deadmandrinking Deadmandrinking 12:19 pm 27 Sep 07

Life experience, Thumper? Ha! 16 year olds have two years of experience less than 18 year olds – that’s ummm….college. Woohoo! A whole bunch of classes they probably attended about half of!
Honestly, how many times do you need to take ‘life-changing’ trips to Bali or something where you hung out in tourist bars talking to other australians before going back to your cushy job in canberra do you need to take before you can assess a particular party’s policies on issues that affect you?
It’s almost like your vote counts against political donations and the ‘big two’ that dominate federal and every state parliament.

boomacat boomacat 11:33 am 27 Sep 07

Uh, I aint no Labor voter, a good old fashioned “swinger” here, but I know shite policies when I see them (eg WorkChoices, just about anything that’s ever come out of Howard’s mouth).

Ralph Ralph 9:21 am 27 Sep 07

I know I’m making complete sense when the usual bevvy of part-time posters comes out of the woodwork, frothing at the mouth, jibbering and waving their crooked fingers.

I don’t know this character you’re talking about Pierce. You know, I’m too busy reading Bolt, Janet, Piers and watching Bill O’Reilly.

pierce pierce 9:20 am 27 Sep 07

Didn’t think you would Thumper, just checking.

Didn’t the voting/drinking age used to be 21 though?

Thumper Thumper 9:03 am 27 Sep 07

Sadly an age cut off is the fairest and most equitable way to decide.

18 is the drinking age, why? Because someone decided so.

18 is the voting age, why? Same reason…

We have to be careful not to let these things run away from us, after all, lots of 14 year olds work as well, why not give them the vote?

“Unfortunately Thumper I’d say that the majority of Australians don’t really give a toss about politics” Indeed, you are 100% correct there pierce.

“you don’t think voting rights should be allocated based on IQ, perceived voting intention or income do you?”

Nope, and I didn’t say anything towards that point.

el ......VNBerlinaV8 el ......VNBerlinaV8 8:45 am 27 Sep 07

Perhaps an IQ test could be implemented? Anyone falling under a certain point can’t vote?

pierce pierce 8:42 am 27 Sep 07

Oh, I might need to clarify – imagine Ja’mie from Summer Heights High saying the things that Ralph writes, they just seem made for that voice and attitude.

Unfortunately Thumper I’d say that the majority of Australians don’t really give a toss about politics – you don’t think voting rights should be allocated based on IQ, perceived voting intention or income do you? Maybe people should have to take a test before they can vote – name the deputy leader or explain the doctrine of the separation of powers?

If 16 y.o’s are old enough to pay taxes and are actually getting an education about the political system and they want it, give them the vote.

pierce pierce 8:30 am 27 Sep 07

Lex, that was awesome.

GregW – by people, do you mean Bolt, Ackerman and Albrechtsen? (a.k.a BAAA) – the polls seem to indicate fairly convincingly that Australians realise these changes didn’t need to be made.

Howard didn’t release his policies until 3 weeks before the election in 96, why should Rudd act any differently.

Ok, better get back to my work with the sinister reds under the beds conspiracy.

Thumper Thumper 8:25 am 27 Sep 07

When I was 16 I could have run the world, because I knew everything.

Problem is, the older I got, the more I realised what I didn’t know.

Seriously people, 16 years old? What do you base your decisions on at 16 years old? Life experience? Ah, no..

What’s happening on home and away?

Yes, there are politically aware 16 year olds, but the majority really couldn’t give a toss about politics.

Protesting against APEC is not politically aware. It is media driven hysteria.

Pierce’s comment about Summer Heights High makes perfect sense. Put it this way, do you really want hoodie wannabes and muffin top bimbo barbies voting?

GregW GregW 8:14 am 27 Sep 07

“How about confiscating the vote from ignorant, suburban white men who get fooled into voting for the Liberal party by their divisive, dishonest and populist policies”

The claim that Liberals are populist, from a Labour support is interesting to say the least. I believe there’s a analogy about pots and kettles that is appropriate here…

The introduction of WorkChoices was hardly a populist move, it has just become popular because people are (finally) realising it needed to be done.

Then there’s Labours IR reforms, environmental policies (oh wait, they haven’t actually released that), etc..

Strange how otherwise intelligent people can vote Labour, I guess it just shows how emotional arguments can win naive people over.

Lex Lex 11:07 pm 26 Sep 07

There is scientific evidence to suggest the reasoning and evaluative capacity of human brains isn’t fully developed until about 24. Then there is the theory of Piaget’s stages of development which suggests that some people never get to the abstract concept stage, regardless of age. Then there is the fact that a lot of people turn into reactionary narrow-minded bastards as they age. Discuss.

GnT GnT 10:42 pm 26 Sep 07

Nemo – first of all, the P&C is very different to the teachers. I would doubt your son has much chance to be influenced by the P&C president, if he even knows who he is.

Secondly, if his examples included Howard and Carr, he is talking about opposite ends of politics. Hardly biased either way.

Thirdly, kids are influenced more by their parents than their teachers. I would think your son shares more of your own political views than that of his teachers. And if he is so easily influenced by ‘propaganda’ maybe you should think about teaching him to critically evalutate the literature and view the issues with an open mind. Oh wait – he’s already learning that at school.

pierce pierce 10:15 pm 26 Sep 07

Just watched Summer Heights High and when you hear Ralph’s comments in the voice of Ja’mie, it all makes a lot more sense.

el ......VNBerlinaV8 el ......VNBerlinaV8 10:07 pm 26 Sep 07

Ah….I remember being young and idealistic back then…

What a stupid, stupid idea.

boomacat boomacat 10:07 pm 26 Sep 07

Oh the Australian, now that’s an objective source.

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