Web 2.0 Political Party

One of the things that bugs me most about NZ politics is that there isn’t a political party that I actually like.

Every election I basically sift through all the FUD to try and identify the parties that seems less likely to screw things up. I then cast my votes and hope that for the next 3 years the winners don’t go off on some tangent and introduce a law or bill that I don’t want and I don’t have any input into.

So today I was rather intrigued to see a Google ad at the top of my Gmail account that read: “Wanted: Six Members of Parliament” with a link to www.icount.co.nz.

Turns out icount is a new political party that was established last month, that has very interesting twist: Basically members of the party to get to vote (via the icount website) on issues before Parliament. The icount MPs then present and vote in Parliament in accordance with these polls.

This allows everyone to have input into the government all the time!

I very much like this idea. For years I have been saying that this is they way a government should be run. I was thinking publicly accessible electronic voting booths, that anyone can vote at on any issues that they wanted to provide input on, but using the web is a good start.

Of course for my electronic voting booths to work you would have to issue everyone with a nice unique and secure form of identification and this would freak out the tin-foil hat wearers. Not to mention that we have all read about the electronic voting fiascos in the USA.

Which raises questions about security for icount, I did some digging around on their site but they did not seem to have any obvious information on questions such as how they avoid vote rigging, what security policies and procedures they have, how do they know that their members are real etc.

Still icount is an intriguing idea and is likely to attract people like me who would like to have more input into what goes on in our government, not to mention the “social networking” generation for who using the web is as natural as breathing.