508 #90: Performance Oval

posted by Mike on October 30th, 2009

508 is a show about Worcester. This week’s panel is Gabe Rollins.

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We talk about Gabe’s attempts to send his own survey to the City Council candidates; the “performance oval” behind City Hall; the Worcester energy barnraising; and the pros and cons of voting.

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  1. On October 30, 2009 at 18:13 Nicole said:

    First, my condolences to Brendan. I don’t know you personally, and I didn’t know your father, but my prayers are with you and your family.

    Regarding voting — unfortunately, telling someone not to vote is about the most mainstream thing you can do in the City of Worcester. I’m sure I’ll go into Shaw’s on Tuesday morning and find it the same way I found Sullivan Middle School at every other municipal election: the poll workers outnumbering the voters by three to one. Last year’s presidential election was only one of two times I’ve had to wait to vote — the other was the time it seemed like no one on my street filled out the city census and everyone had to fill out provisional ballots. Because paying excise taxes and property taxes isn’t confirmation enough that you live in the city…

    I think people need to show up at the polls and vote their conscience. Most of the time my conscience tells me to vote for (a) the challengers, (b) the incumbents I actually like, and (c) Big Bird.

    Not showing up changes nothing. Having 15,000 people vote for Big Bird or none of the above in an unopposed election sends a clear message.

    There was a movement a couple of years ago to make None of the Above a choice on the ballot (see http://nota.org/). I wish it had made more headway, and not just because I love Brewster’s Millions. It would be a great way to tell people that you don’t need to vote for your unchallenged District Councilor just because he is the only one listed on the ballot. Most people don’t know what to do with that write-in box. That box is there so that you never need to vote for the lesser of two evils, or the only person on the ballot.

    (Ugh, I should just have a blog already instead of leaving long, rambling comments on this one…)

    One other question/comment: I think the energy barnraising would be something great to pursue with a PTA at a public school. At a time when we’re all looking to save some money, there are likely schools out there that could benefit from improved energy efficiency.

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