Comments issue resolved

Thanks to theme designer Ellen at Elmastudio, the Disqus commenting system is up and functional once again. Thank you to everyone for your patience as I continue to fine-tune this new theme. Related Posts:No Related Posts

The preferential ballot favours the party with the most first preference votes

I have written several posts looking at the growing popularity of the preferential ballot/the alternative vote (AV) here in Canada – see this recent one, for example. I even attempted a redo of the 2011 Canadian federal election using the preferential ballot rather than our current FPTP. As I explained in that post, and in others, the big problem in attempting to forecast how the election would have played out using AV was the absence of data concerning voters’ preferences. Some polling firms would (and still do) regularly ask people which party was their second choice, but no one ever looked at voters’ potential 3rd, 4th, etc. choices. However, a new poll by Abacus Data has done just that. According […]

Apologies for the lack of posting

I recently underwent laser eye surgery and using the computer is still difficult. Things are slowly improving every day, however. Also, I am looking at a new theme for this blog, one that will work better with mobile devices and tablets, etc., and so expect some experimentation in coming days as I test out new layouts. Related Posts:No Related Posts

Proposal for elected Commons committee chairs

For the past three years now, this blog has explored some of the more interesting developments in parliamentary procedure in various jurisdictions (primarily the UK, Canada, Australia and New Zealand). Regular readers know that I am a big fan of many of the reforms introduced in the UK House of Commons in 2010, as per the recommendations of the Wright report. One of those reforms involved select committee chairs being elected by the whole House, as I’ve blogged about in detail in other posts. For example, back in April 2011, I wrote one of my Fixing Ottawa posts, this one focused on Committees, wherein I explained in detail how UK select committee chairs and members are now elected. In another […]

Quote of the Day

“It’s the only top job that requires no previous experience. No training, no qualifications and limited intelligence.” – Sir Humphrey on why anyone would want to be prime minister, in series 6, episode 1 of Yes, Prime Minister. Related Posts:No Related Posts

Appointed political hacks

Recent controversies surrounding a handful of Canadian Senators have sparked an intense debate (at least among the chattering political classes) with many calling not simply for Senate reform, but for the Upper Chamber to be abolished. Those in favour of abolition view the Senate as a graveyard for appointed political hacks. I have written a good number of posts defending the Senate. I am not at all in favour of abolishing it, however, I do recognize that the appointment process is flawed. I will once again address some of the issues raised by critics of the Senate. “Appointed political hacks” One of the most common criticisms levelled at current day Senators is that they are simply “appointed political hacks”. The […]