Elections and choices

It was Election Day yesterday. I voted in the morning and in the evening kept half an eye on the results as they came in, although I didn’t wait up to see who won. There was likely to be some horse trading with minor parties to get a majority to govern and that’ll take a few days to resolve.

I was hoping for a change in government but it’s unlikely. I think it’s unhealthy for any one party to be in power too long. They get complacent and arrogant, and start believing their own hype. Although it gets messy at Election time and figuring out who won can take days if not weeks, the MMP system we use for voting does make for a far more interesting selection of candidates and wider representation of views.

All that representation means many more choices to make. It’s a lot of work to read up on parties’ policies and decide where you think money should come from and where and to whom it should go.

There’s been a bit of misinformation passing around, but nothing like the epidemic of ‘fake news’ (or as we tend to call it here – bald faced lies) seen in the last US election. It’s bad enough trying to decide between policies let alone trying to figure out if what you’re reading is true or not.

I’m not a hugely political person. I take an interest because work demands I maintain a level of awareness, and because I believe in the principle of democracy, which to me means being not just a voter but an informed one.

So I did my reading, made my choice, and instead of going to an election night party I stayed home nursing sore hands, elbows, and hips that have been giving me grief all week. I overdid it last weekend (travel on top of a heavy week of work) and I’ve been paying the price all week.

As an aside, this year marks 125 years since women got the vote here. We’re proud of the fact we were the first country in the world to give women the vote. My great grandmother was a signatory to the petition. It seems disrespectful not to vote.