Elected leaders should always carry out what the majority of there constituents want that is why they were voted for in the first place. There concerns and view's lined up with the majority that's why they got elected. I can tell you if I voted for someone who apparently shared my views and most others like me and then decided that they just did that to get in so they could push views that were different then what they were elected for I would be pretty pissed.
Today's Poll: Should elected leaders take the popular position or do what they think is right?
We all know what the majority wants. They want free stuff. They just like the idea of not paying for things they want.
It doesn't matter what you want to cut, a very vocal minority will always show up to keep government from taking away their handouts. At the end of the year, the same people will blast you for raising their taxes....
Charlie hit a home-run on that.
We do NOT live in a democracy, we live in a democratic republic. A democracy is akin to anarchy, without a republican form of government (Not to be confused with the party which shares the name)we would never obtain good government rather we would have populace demand. We are supposed to elect leaders who hold similar views as we do, and then vote according to the information that they are presented. And yes, public opinion should be considered.
Charlie is absolutely correct, no matter what the circumstance about making cuts, a vocal group will most likely be upset.
I think you and John are wrong on this. I don't think the vocal people are saying they want free stuff. I believe that they are trying to show that there is NO NET GAIN in this process. Yes, taxes go down but the tote fee eats up the savings. In the end many property owners will actually see an increase. I may be wrong but I agree with Mr. Housekneckt that this is a back-door effort to raise city revenue. Make the people feel good by lowering taxes and then create fees to offset the loss. The taxpayers are too blind to see it. We see this constantly in our NYS government.
Ted, neither of us were talking bout the trash debate. We reflected that most people want soemthing for free or help paying for it. It could be food banks, college aid, health care, or mortgage bailout.
And it is not just individuals. Groups and business want the same thing.
Ted, John's right I'm not talking about trash collection in Batavia. I don't live in the city anymore so, that's none of my business.
Trash was also brought up when I was on council and we had the same result. People want trash collection from the ARC, there is no doubt in my mind. They also need to be prepared to pay the bill. I'm sure the process will work itself out without outside interference.
It doesn't matter they do what they want anyway
John I have to disagree. I believe the majority of citizens would much rather have government influence on their lives and finances be GREATLY diminished. The American dream is not dead, but it has certainly been gravely wounded by big governments' liberal policies.
I've been one of those conservatives still trying to put stock in the republican party - and I have been wrong.
I'm beginning to think the libertarians are on to something, I hope more of my party begin to recognize that.
"I believe the majority of citizens would much rather have government influence on their lives and finances be GREATLY diminished."
That's called a Pipe Dream. The American public is hooked on government because it wants to be. There might be 15-20% of the public who doesn't but, it's not even close to a majority. I think many more people "believe" they want to live without the government trough to feed from but, it's delusional.
We the people created our current government. The only difference between the two parties is that Republicans spend a lot of time conviencing themselves they dont like the taste of the government cool aid. When in fact they just LOVE it!!!!
In my viewpoint it seems the City and County Govt have reached the point where the public is just an annoyance to them now. My impression is they feel that they are entitled like parents to make decisions for us despite any evidence to the contrary. Some have even said the raise the currently want in the upcoming budget is because... and I quote, "I don’t know who you talk to, but there are people I talk to who say we don’t get enough for the crap we have to go through," and a few similar comments noted in the local news. To me it seems simple, have the city voters vote on the issue. if they reject the current plan then they have to come up with something else. You cant just cram things down the public's throat. Our federal govt tried that with alcohol porhibition and we all know how that turned out. Its about time we started acting like a rebuplic rather than some kind of democratic dictatorship. And for those unclear on the differences between a democracy and a democratic republic, here ya go...
A government of the masses.
Authority derived through mass meeting or any other form of "direct" expression.
Results in mobocracy.
Attitude toward property is communistic--negating property rights.
Attitude toward law is that the will of the majority shall regulate, whether is be based upon deliberation or governed by passion, prejudice, and impulse, without restraint or regard to consequences.
Results in demogogism, license, agitation, discontent, anarchy.
Authority is derived through the election by the people of public officials best fitted to represent them.
Attitude toward law is the administration of justice in accord with fixed principles and established evidence, with a strict regard to consequences.
A greater number of citizens and extent of territory may be brought within its compass.
Avoids the dangerous extreme of either tyranny or mobocracy.
Results in statesmanship, liberty, reason, justice, contentment, and progress.
Is the "standard form" of government throughout the world.
All the things people complain about with the recent Presidents is a turn towards Democracy from the Democratic Republic we are supposed to have.
A good couple of references for this are
You might be right Charlie. I'll continue believing that most Americans don't think so.
Charlie there were a recent polls on this
December 12 2012
And one more to your point
I guess the answer comes from who does the polling and what questions are asked
Mob rule isn't good. The majority can be wrong.
Mark, I'll agree with both polls. Ask the average person if they think government spends too much and they agree. Ask that same person what to cut and they say "waste". They assume that government can provide all the same free stuff without actually eliminating services to lower spending. It's nonsensical thinking, people truly believe cuts can come without the loss of all the free things they have grown dependent on.
It is actually quite scary that a majority of respondents favor an elected official sticking his finger in the wind and legislating accordingly. First, as others have pointed out, that is not the intended structure of our system of government. Second, there is no way of knowing what the "majority" of constituents desire since there is widespread apathy towards politics and the actual workings of government. If elected officials voted according to what they believed were the wishes of the "majority", they would more often than not be voting according to either a vocal minority, or a successful false narrative driven by partisan media outlets. The fact that this poll came out as it did in this area is discouraging. I've said it before but didn't think it applied to this region...more Americans can name the participants on Jersey Shore than can name the Supreme Court Justices. Welcome to the new normal.
I apologize. I reread Charlie's first comment and I didn't see what I read. The garbage tote thing clouds my thinking.
In rereading your comment I totally agree with the both of you. However in many cases our government fosters this type of thinking because it gives them the votes to keep them in office. In some cases I believe we "Baby Boomers" and our school education program are also to fault. We want everyone to succeed without feeling any pain or discomfort. I am afraid the only way to turn this attitude around is the country going into a deep financial depression. Similar to the Great Depression.
You are correct. Very few politicians lose election by saying "I'll give you something for free" or "I'll make somebody else help you pay for it".
There is no black-or-white answer to that poll question. In most instances the elected official should vote as his electors desire, but not always.
Situations where the elected official should (or could) not vote with the electorate:
1) If, as Charlie pointed out, the majority want free stuff, but there is no way to pay for it, it would be irresponsible to vote for the free stuff;
2) If a majority declare "no taxes", yet the public infrastructure is deteriorating to such an extent that roads, bridges, and public buildings are crumbling and a danger, then it would be irresponsible to cut taxes and leave the government with a lack of resources to repair the infrastructure;
3) If the public wants conflicting items ("low taxes" and "free stuff"), the elected official simply cannot vote what the public wants.