There’s already been some pundits claiming autocratic countries have been handling the pandemic better than democratic countries. This piece on the website for the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace argues differently. It’s worth reading, but a key part of the piece is this:
Despite attempts by politicians to use the crisis to tout their favored political model, the record so far does not show a strong correlation between efficacy and regime type. While some autocracies have performed well, like Singapore, others have done very poorly, like Iran. Similarly, some democracies have stumbled, like Italy and the United States, while others have performed admirably, like South Korea and Taiwan. The disease has not yet ravaged developing countries, making it impossible to include poorer autocracies and democracies in the comparison.
Keep this in mind, especially afterwards, when writers and authorities argue that we need more controls on people to fight future pandemics.
After last night’s debacle at the Iowa caucus for the Democrats, there are going to be many hot takes published on what should change. I suspect many of them will be bad. The following is pretty good, I think.
Something should change, though. That was an embarrassing disaster.
— Read on http://www.vox.com/policy-and-politics/2020/1/31/21087017/iowa-caucus-democratic-primary-2020
Whatever else you think of Sanders and his politics, if you think he is ineffective, then I recommend these two pieces:
I used to wonder if he was effective, but not anymore. Based on those piece, I think he has been effective, and if anything, very effective in certain years.
This is really good work done by CBC on the recent Canadian election: How would proportional representation have shaped this election’s results? | CBC/Radio-Canada
Anyone interested in moving passed First Past the Post should read this.
Is this piece by Josh Marshall: The Joy and the Drama | Talking Points Memo
It perfectly captures the essence of Bill and Hillary Clinton as political figures. And it rightly contrasts them to the essence of Barack Obama.
First off, there are sites like this one that claim to help you if you want to decrease the chances of a more right wing politician winng election in a specific riding: Strategic Voting 2019 Canadian Federal Election | don’t make a statement, make a difference.
You can use the site that way. But I’d argue you can use it another way. If you want to vote non-strategically, you can look at the site to see who is likely to win and then use that to vote for the party you prefer (assuming you are considering more than one). If you are unsure whether or not to vote NDP or Green, you might choose to vote Green and boost their vote count if you are pretty certain the NDP is going to win. Likewise, if you are a right of centre voter and you think there is either a strong chance or no chance the Conservatives will win, then you may feel more strongly to vote for the Conservatives.
Of course you don’t have to do any of those things. You can vote for your preferred party. You can vote for your preferred candidate. You can cast a protest vote for a more extreme party knowing it is unlikely they won’t win but as a way to indicate your displeasure. Vote how you think best. It is your vote, and you can use your vote to participate in the electoral process the best way you know how.