Ballot Proposal Fatigue: How Many is Too Many?

    Comments:  | Leave A Comment

     

    As ballot proposals get snowballed onto the Nov. 6 ballot, Michigan voters should plan to be showered with big decisions when they enter the polls on Election Day. It raises the question: will voters get decision fatigue? An article in the New York Times along with some NPR coverage recently brought this newly coined phenomenon to public attention.
    Consider this:
    After Wednesday’s Supreme Court ruling put three more hotly contested proposals on the ballot, there are nowsix proposals awaiting voter response: On Election Day voters will be asked yay or nay to: Another bridge to Canada, the emergency manager Law (PA4), stronger collective bargaining power, higher energy efficiency standards for businesses, a required supermajority vote in the House before any taxes are raised, and organizing rights for home health care workers.
    Phew!
    Sounds like voting this year could bring on a full-fledged case of decision fatigue. What exactly does that mean?
    John Tierney of The New York Times reports:
    “It’s different from ordinary physical fatigue — you’re not consciously aware of being tired — but you’re low on mental energy. The more choices you have to make throughout the day, the harder each one becomes for your brain, and eventually it looks for shortcuts, usually in either of two very different ways.”
    It’s these shortcuts that could become dangerous this Election Day. The shortcuts can take two forms, The Times reports: One is making hasty, reckless decisions (“Sure, I’ll vote for that. I just want to be done”), the other is making no decision at all (“I’ll leave that one blank. My brain hurts”).
    The term decision fatigue a new finding involving a phenomenon called ego depletion, a term coined by social psychologist Roy Baumeister based on a Freudian idea. On Election Day voters will have to say yay or nay to: Another bridge to Canada, the emergency manager Law (PA4), Stricter Collective Bargaining agreements, higheger energy efficiency standards for businesses, a required supermajority vote in the House before any taxes are raised, home health care workers having right to organize and create registry listings.
    Phew!
    To ease decision fatigue at the polls, stay tuned in for more Morning Coffee. We’ll go over the language of each proposal (once it’s been selected) so you can make your own—unrushed—decision before the big day.
     
     

    Tags: » » » » » » » » » » » » »

    Comments

    blog comments powered by Disqus
    Follow

    Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

    Join 184 other followers