Compulsory voting distorts democracy, not just because of the often used argument that the right to vote cannot exist without the right not to vote.
The worst aspect of compulsory voting is that it is not compulsory for politicians to come up with policies. There is no need to win vote because the votes are guaranteed. They only need to get more of the guaranteed vote than the other guy.
The easiest way to get more votes in under a compulsory voting system is to destroy your opponent. Negativity is the name of the game.
It is much easier to destroy with than create. It is much easier to engender fear than to inspire and motivate. The Tony Abbotts of this world who can only engender fear and hatred as a policy would not survive in a true democracy.
It is probably unrealistic to expect a system where political leaders did not have little digs at each over, but a system that breeds and encourages the continuous, repetitive mind numbing grind of negativity cannot be considered democratic.
Coupled with preferential voting where everybody’s second choice gets elected and democracy becomes mind-numbing negative mediocrity.
Democracy is not a system that can be chosen once. We cannot pass legislation to say that people will consider the possibilities and choose accordingly. Democracy has to be chosen continuously and by every generation.
A true democracy is a system were politicians must to work for their votes by providing vision and policies. A system that leaves politicians fighting in the gutter over guaranteed votes is not democratic.
Democracy is for those who care. If someone does not care and puts in a vote because they have to they distort the system. A country run on the votes of the percentage of the population who care is better than one run on compulsion. People who do not vote have voted that they do not care, as is their democratic right. It is not democratic for those who do not care to distort the choices of those who do.