to: Robert Patterson
Chief Electoral Officer
1075 Pendergast St.
Victoria B.C.
V8V 1X4

Dear sir,

I am writing to you because I have learned from the Law Reform Commission that you have wide discretionary powers with respect to the manner and form of the ballot papers which are referred to in the Election Act as Form 19.

I am offering a simple suggestion, which seems to me, having conducted wide research with a number of people of all ages, to present the voters of B.C. with a unique opportunity to register not merely a protest vote against the adversarial party system which has brought the good management of collective affairs into such confusion, but would assert the dignity and equality of all electors and reassert the democratic rights of all voters. This would be a "NONE OF THE ABOVE" box on the ballot form wherein a person may register a vote.

The matter of what may then be done with the votes so cast raises a number of interesting possibilities. The one which comes to mind, would be, that should the number of electors voting in this manner, be a simple majority, over the total votes cast for the other partisan and independent candidates, then a random selection in the manner of a lottery would select from such voters, a constituency representative, or perhaps two, one female, and one male, for a non-adversarial constituent assembly, whose sole purpose would be the well-being of the people of the province - surely the first role of any responsible government!

In the modern state, where we have an intelligent and professional civil service, the role of executive management could be quite effectively exercised by such randomly selected people. Certainly, such representatives, in a watchdog capacity, are less likely to carry the corrupting influences of political baggage and vested interest concerns of career power seekers.

I would refer you to the Annual Report of the Commission on Resources and Environment, 1992 - 1993, produced by Mr. Stephen Owen, a man whose credentials are widely respected. On page ten, he suggests, under the heading 'Dysfunction in Public Policy Making', that the need for a provincial land use strategy is related to the more general dysfunction that confronts society in the processes and substance of public policy decision making. The dysfunction expresses itself in a widespread public cynicism about government effectiveness and fairness, and a resulting dissatisfaction with actions and decisions of government.

I understand, following the brief discussion I had with a gentleman in your office, that you would probably give this matter more serious consideration, if you were to hear from others. Would it serve a purpose for me to prepare either a form letter or petition so this matter can be given immediate consideration by your office before the forms are printed for the next provincial election? 

Yours truly,
John Allen West

#8 RR1 Hornby Isl.
B.C. Canada