The Kewl Doodz 'n' Chyx

Saving you from dull moments. Some links may be NSFW!

Posts Tagged ‘politics’

Voting profiles of the new Cabinet

Posted by Martin Poulter on 14 May 2010

Via TheyWorkForYou, a summary of the voting records of the top people in our new Government:

BBC News has more biographical details of these people.

Previously on KDnC: see how the House of Commons has voted on your top priority issues.

Posted in Brainy | Tagged: , | 2 Comments »

Before the election, do your homework

Posted by Martin Poulter on 3 May 2010

There will always be people who base their vote on which candidate has the shiniest teeth, or on how their newspaper tells them to. I hope you, fellow voter, are less superficial. Probably the least superficial thing you could do in advance of Thursday’s UK General Election is this:

Go to Public Whip and see how each party’s MPs vote on the issues that matter to you.  Manifesto promises are easily broken, and presidential-style debates are irrelevant when we’re electing not a president but a legislative body. The voting record shows what the parties really work for, and Public Whip’s hard work makes it visible at a glance.

Some votes to take a look at:

My personal reaction is that, of the three main parties

  • one almost always votes the way I would if I were an MP,
  • another seems to be disastrously old-fashioned and authoritarian
  • the third  is very divided, with a lot of rebels who I agree with more often than the rest of the party, but again, they’ve backed some disastrous decisions.

If you want to look at the voting record of a particular MP, go instead to TheyWorkForYou.

Posted in Brainy | Tagged: , , , , , , , | 4 Comments »

Skeptical Voter

Posted by Martin Poulter on 18 April 2010

This interesting wiki-based project doesn’t “rate” politicians, but simply lists their positions on various science-related topics and lets the reader decide whether and how that should affect their voting intentions. Like all wikis, it’s a work in progress. Pretty much the ideal candidate from a skeptical perspective is Dr Evan Harris (Lib Dem, Oxford West & Abingdon). Probably the worst, in the sense of wilful scientific illiteracy, is David Tredinnick (Conservative, Bosworth). The thought of Peter Lilley (Conservative, Hitchin & Harpenden) getting back in is horrifying as well, not to mention the anti-science party policies of  UKIP.

I’d be interested to hear about other projects looking at the candidates from different perspectives. My Gay Vote is a related project, though it summarises historical voting patterns rather than looking at specific candidates’ opinions.

A postscript, June 2010: tragically for science and rational thought, Evan Harris lost his seat by a narrow margin. David Tredinnick is now a member of the health select committee.

Posted in Brainy | Tagged: , | Leave a Comment »

Barack Obama Wins: The Insanity is Over!

Posted by Martin Poulter on 6 November 2008

The world celebrates as an academic defeats the forces of anti-intellectualism and wins more votes than any US president in history. Tuesday was emotional- I was close to tears several times, and have to pay tribute to the crowd at the Cube Cinema for partying in the early hours. The drama is recorded for posterity – from first results to the morning after – in this long MetaFilter thread.‘s election predictions were surprisingly accurate – chalk one up to the appliance of science. I want to especially congratulate the DailyKos online community for their amazing stories of dedication to the cause, day by day for years. If only British politics were half this interesting!

Posted in Brainy | Tagged: , , , , | 1 Comment »