Wednesday, 22 April 2015

A chasm of difference

It's voting time, and if you're reading this you care (at least a little) about what I think. I've tried to order my thoughts as best I can, but it may degenerate into a bit of a shouty thing later on. Apologies up-front for that. Here goes.

Full disclosure: I'm pretty Lefty now, much to the chagrin of at least one person. It's a thing now. I might explain why later, but that fact may help you in deciphering what follows. To the analysis!


This is a bit of a difficult one. Voting is the very least you can do in terms of political engagement, but at the same time it's a pathetically low bar, and one that blocks most people from getting what they want. The British Public, that conservative, traditional beast, decided not to go for the Alternative Vote that was proposed four years ago.

Excuse me while I go and rock in the corner as I realise that was four years ago.

Me, four years ago. You're welcome.
So it seems, at least for the foreseeable future, we're stuck with a really poor system. There's no other way of putting this: if you have three people running, then all you need is 34% of the vote to represent the entire constituency. Sound sensible? No. It sounds absurd.

It IS absurd.

So: voting is a suck, and likely to be more meaningless the more candidates you've got running for you. The only way you can guarantee representatives who represent more than half of the people in a constituency is two-horse races. With that being said, not voting is more of a suck because:

All the bastards will vote

This is an unfortunate truth, but a valid one. The right has its fringe splinter groups, who are (refreshingly?) upfront about how much they hate people of colour, people of non-Christian religions, and people who speak any language but English. But as much they believe in their neo-fascist causes, sooner or later they return to the matronly bosom of the Conservative Party

Brr. Sorry for that visual.

But over here on the left, we're screwed for options. The Labour party is a laughable shadow of its former self; a fun-house mirror reflection. Consider: someone in the (theoretically) left-leaning party thought this would be a vote winner.