I find it strange that anyone would find voting an inherently more politically active statement than not voting.

Why would I lose the moral right to object to the way we are governed, if I do not vote? I find the implied assertion a bit paternalistic. Why is my choice not to vote immediately taken as an endorsement for the removal of my rights? Can't it also be a political statement by itself? Regardless of whether noting or not voting constitutes a political statement, no citizen every loses the moral right to object to the way we are governed.

Here in Australia, we have a system of compulsory voting, where each and every Australian citizen of age and ability is legally obliged to cast a vote at every local, state and federal election, or face fining or imprisonment

Here in Australia, we also have two main political axes of power, loosely centred on the Labour party, and the (rapidly splintering) Liberal and National Party coalition. Both have policies that are rapidly moving towards the centre and have points that are unpalatable to many.

The Liberal/National coalition support the privatisation of state companies, most notably Telstra, the national carrier. The Labour party has also supported privatisation of national assets like the state banks.

The Liberal/National coalition shows no commitment to meet the Kyoto agreements on the reduction of greenhouse gases. The Labour Party has a inconsistent attitude towards environmental issues.

The Liberal/National coalition has introduced a Goods and Services Tax that places inordinate compliance costs on small business. The Labour Party promises more chaos to roll it back. In addition, the Labour party supports the freezing of tarrif reductions in the favour of self-interested lobbying groups.

The alternatives are not particularly palateable. One Nation, and Pauline Hanson, its head, supports a right leaning and vaguely racist rhetoric, in the guise of "equal opportunity". The Democrats failed to obtain their original demands on the GST and passed it through the upper house in compliance with the Liberal/National Federal Government.

IF I COULD, I WOULD NOT VOTE. But I can't. So I do.

It is often pointed out to voting Aussies that people in the (crazy, crazy) USA often view voting as a moral duty, on par with attending church. My view is that democracy is the right to choose as one wishes, including the option that says "none of the above".