Monday, July 16, 2012

Ballot Initiative Season Has Begun, and it's Not Exactly a Good Thing

Ready, set, go. Ballot initiative season is officially upon us. The 11 (yes, 11) ballot initiatives that we will be voting on in November now have numbers, which means the fundraising race will kick into high gear. Expect many advertisements via your television, radio, mailbox, and likely your computer screen as well.
We are simply weighing in on too many decisions via a flawed process.
I've said it before, and I'll say it again: The ballot initiative process is riddled with problems. As it currently stands it does not provide citizens with a good process to make vitally important decisions about the laws that govern us.
The ballot initiative process asks voters to make crucially important decisions in isolation. Our government is too big and too complex to make decisions on a piecemeal basis.
In addition, it is entirely rational for each voter to vote in favor of more services and against revenue increases. The ballot initiative process does not require that voters weigh the consequence of their decisions. Further, voters are accountable only to themselves, not a group of constituents, so quite reasonably may make decisions for their benefit.

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