ELECTION THOUGHTS 4

21 Apr

ELECTION THOUGHTS 4

blackadder election photo: Blackadder Blackadder.jpg

There’s been one thing said to me all my adult life. Or variations of that one thing.

“If you vote for a minority party in the General Election you’re wasting your vote. They won’t get in, so go for someone who might stand a chance.”

What a turgid, mind-numbing attitude that is! Vote for someone other than the one your conscience believes is right? Crap!

Way back it was the Liberal Party. I seem to remember my mum voted Liberal back in the very early part of my life and she was probably scorned and told she was wasting her vote. In our constituency the Liberals didn’t have a snowball’s chance in hell of getting anywhere near enough public votes.

The thing is, my mum was an intelligent woman before a hard life in difficult times took its toll, and she’d no doubt read the propaganda and made her choice. If someone was going to represent her she wanted him to be Liberal. Yes, him: it was mostly men back then.

Things haven’t changed much when it comes to the wasted vote argument, except there’s a proliferation of political parties, and that doesn’t bode well for democracy. It might if things were fair, but they’re not. The system is stacked against the individual in favour of the big blocks called The Main Parties. In this area it’s a given that the Labour candidate will be returned yet again by a mostly working class electorate. Anyone not happy with him will cast a vote in favour of any one of the alternatives, thus splitting opposition to him into half a dozen fractured splinters.

My own vote isn’t for him, though. Because of what I’ve suggested before, he isn’t the leader and never will be, and if you ask Mr Average who he’s voting for the chances are he’ll give you the name of the party leader rather than the local candidate. Here I am, repeating this mantra again! But it’s true. The system in this country calls itself democratic, but it isn’t. The Mother of Parliaments is, I’m afraid, flawed.

My own vote might be described as a wasted vote because the person I’ve already put my cross against won’t get even close to winning the seat. But I don’t consider it wasted because in a true democracy every man or woman’s opinion should have equal weight and the minorities not washed down the plug-hole as also-rans. We should have a system in which the proportion of people voting a particular way has the weight of their votes represented for five years in Parliament. It might only give my chosen candidate’s party one little parliamentary seat, but that’s better than none, isn’t it?

And my views would then have a chance of being heard on the National stage, maybe by only a tiny, whispered voice – but that’s better than no voice at all, isn’t it?

And nothing will have been wasted.

© Peter Rogerson 21.04.15

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2 Responses to “ELECTION THOUGHTS 4”

  1. georgiakevin April 21, 2015 at 1:10 pm #

    What an interesting post! I am still confused about how things are done politically in Great Britain but I want to learn.

  2. Peter Rogerson April 21, 2015 at 3:12 pm #

    I think the main difference is the Prime Minister (not quite President, but almost) is the leader of the political party that gains most seats at the General Election, but doesn’t get voted for by the public as Prime Minister, just by his own voters for his own seat – usually a town, city or county district).

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