Have your say with oneBIGvoice

The parliamentary elections in NZ last year will be remembered for having the lowest voter turnout since 1887

At the time a lot of commentators opined that this was the result of Labour Party voters staying away in droves because they knew they couldn’t beat John Key & the Nats.

“A total of 3,070,847 people were registered to vote in the election, with over 2.2 million votes cast and a turnout of 74.21%[4] – the lowest turnout since 1887.[5] The incumbent National Party, led by John Key, gained the plurality with 47.3% of the party vote and 59 seats, two seats short of holding a majority.”

Except that low voter turnout and “too close to call” elections are also happening in the UK, Australia and other places. Political parties now are so au fait with focus groups and polling that they have swapped a genuine passion for change and inclusive public policy thinking for facsimile results and so end up holding cardboard elections.

Many voters see through the card board characters and have lost faith in the voting process.

Somehow PM John Key has interpreted this as a big win* and is now proceeding on an idealogical path of asset stripping and other exploitation of natural resources.

Have a look at Partial privatisation numbers ‘don’t add up’

“Sustento director and economist Raf Manji said. It was admirable for the Government to lower debt, but the numbers around selling stakes in energy firms to do so did not add up, he said.

New Zealand debt servicing was at record lows and the energy firms were trading well, returning between 5 and 11 per cent, he said. It looked like the nation was heading into a prolonged period of low interest rates, he said.

“It’s never been so cheap for the Government to borrow money and the demand for Kiwi debt has never been higher. If the New Zealand Government was a business, there would be absolutely no reason why it would be selling.”

Diluting the public’s hold on the firms would risk lower investment in power generation infrastructure and higher prices, he said. No more important public good existed than energy, as it was essential to people and businesses, so it was dangerous to raise the firm’s focus on profits.”

Rafs Sustento website is over here and he is on twitter here @rafmanji

One Big Voice would be very useful in helping to change the governments mind about those asset sales. I’m old enough to remember Capital Markets and the BNZ fiasco / bailout.

Shortly after that the heroes scurried off to Switzerland to roll around in the cash they got from the NZ government. It is another story for another day but please excuse me when I say John Key is a former money market trader and a leopard does not changes its spots.

“1989: Government reduces its share to 51% by selling 34%; with 30% sold to Capital Markets Ltd, and the remainder to the general public”

It is time to make politicians accountable.

What to do about this?

A local Grey Lynn based project is helping to make it easier to to make your elected representative more transparent, accountable and responsive to you, the people that put them in power. It is called One Big Voice and it represents a new way for citizens to show politicians what we really care about.

“Have you ever felt you weren’t being listened to?

Governments have vast economic and political resources which means they set the agenda. The average citizen on the other hand has one vote, no real voice and few other ways to exert any influence over what goes on in the world. In short, if you don’t have the means to make yourself heard your needs are often overlooked or ignored altogether.

That just doesn’t seem fair to us so we’re on a mission to help place the power to shape the world back into the hands of the people. Yep, we know it’s a ridiculously grandiose ambition but we really want to help make the world a better place to be for everyone.

To get the ball rolling we’ve chosen to focus on improving the quality of communication between voters and their elected representatives.”

or you can watch the video below.

The team says

“We’ve researched our idea, figured out how to make it work and finally we’re at the stage where it’s ready to build. So far we’ve donated our time for free, that’s what you do with love projects, but to develop it further and start coding in earnest we need financial support.”

Pop on over the One Big Voice page on indiegogo and login with your Facebook id to get involved.

You can find OBV on twitter at  @oneBIGvoice or on http://www.facebook.com/oneBIGvoice

P.S Your question is- OBV looks just like Standup which is another excellent changemakers project They also would love your support as they need to find a new name for Standup.

“we believe we can come up with an even more descriptive and unique name for our organisation using ‘the power of the crowd’ Feeling creative? Suggest some other names for us>>> Help us choose a cool new name “