Wednesday, 3 February 2010

The best we can do?

I find myself increasingly depressed by the lack of real options for change in the forthcoming general election, particularly as a Scottish voter. Scotland is the land of inherited voting and gang mentality political immaturity.

Scots are as likely to change their voting habits as a shark is to choose to start swimming backwards or Amy Winehouse to come out as an evangelical drug-free tee-totaller.

So it's New Labour or the SNP, in terms of policies you couldn't force a one-atom-thick planar sheet of Graphene between them; a fact that on the surface may appear to run contrary to the grotesque posturing we are treated to on a daily basis - dear reader, don't be fooled.

Witness the bizarre stage show, SNP vs Labour - akin to some sort of mating ritual involving the first two males of a new species who have yet to realise the futility of their never ending circular dance, squawking at their respective superficial plumage colour differences whilst stealing coy glances at one another's genitals.  Ultimately pointless and boring to watch.

Honestly what's the difference between them?  Badminton based spot the ball would be easier. 

Nationalists might cite bridge tolls and prescription charges.  Oh well, way to go SNP - that's compelling in a country riven by class division, a failed (once mission critical) financial sector, a public sector that employs more people than the private sector and the fiscal growth potential of the Gary Glitter fan club.  As for New Labour - listening to them reminds me of the talking doll I had as a child - the one whose voice mechanism broke leaving her to repeat the same phrase again and again until I had to drown her. Take your pick of the Labour phrase, if you read Yousuf then 'Glasgow' or 'GARL' would be a nice starter.

If there are any Labour or SNP activists reading this blog I have news for you, that subtle undertone of frustration you may have detected is not limited to me.

Only the bittersweet aftertaste of a hollow victory is to be found on a minority turnout - the complete indifference of the majority of the electorate should be ignored at your peril, it is a symptom of acute disengagement and indifference inspired by insipid idlers in coloured rosettes who appear on doorsteps, begging, every five years or so.

Is democracy, specifically the version we have, really the best we can do?  If it is then I guess it's time the other inhabitants of this planet had a whip round to save our species, we do it for them after all...


  1. Aye, it's becoming ever more obvious that people are being turned off politics, mostly by the politicians themselves.
    The next government may well be the one that kicks off the revolution, assuming that the apathetic populace decides it's worth getting away from their soaps and their stella's

  2. Depressing, isn't it?

    I have a choice of two: Wee Eck or the Labour fuckwit.

    In my neck of the woods, at a certain age kids are taken to one side by mammy or daddy and they are told:

    "Now then, you need to vote for X because we have always voted for X. It's a family thing. Don't let me down now".

    So we have a succession of numpties leading the charge to the trough.

    I do not see any changes looming this time around.


  3. Th Nationalists are mam and dad told me so.

  4. Swinney buys Tory support

    Says it all really....saved by the Unionists again the snp are a total waste of time

  5. We have a different version of the same problem down here in Surrey. The sitting Tory MP is neither use nor ornament, and was shown in his true colours by the expenses saga. The polite word would be "disingenuous".

    Lib-Dems offer a non-serious candidate, although they have some council representation. The Labour party thinks that Christmas has come early if they don't lose the deposit.... Only the Tories even bother with election leaflets (presumably because of the "communications allowance" for a sitting MP), but we never see the candidate even though his constituency office is half a mile up the road.

    So, no matter if I vote, or who I might favour, it makes not a jot of difference.

  6. Honestly what's the difference between them? Badminton based spot the ball would be easier.

    I think it's more the case of you failing to spot the wood for the trees.

    The major fault line between the SNP and the Labour party is the SNP's desire to break the British Establishment and Labour's desperate desire to ensure that the British Establishment remains intact and that they remain an integral part of it. Privilege, expenses, vermin in ermine, Knighthoods and Uncle Tom Cobley and all.

    The problem of judging the SNP on what they can do in the Scottish Parliament is that they are doing their best in a local government. It might have been renamed the Scottish Government in the Scottish Parliament but a block grant's a block grant.

    If the SNP had control over energy, Scotland's natural resources and over Scotland's economy then the options would open out immeasurably.

  7. @ QM "mostly by the politicians themselves" - the very nub of the problem methinks...

    @ CR "representative Democracy" - that's got a hollow sound, hasn't it?

    @ MR M - glad to see you around, you may laugh but voting habits in Scotland are inherited - along with mouth breathing. SNP or Labour would do the same in a minority government. Rather than acknowledge their similarity they'd recruit the least relevant political in Scotland - just to spite t'other.

    @ Mick - thanks for your comment, and welcome. What do we do? I suspect it will take more than Gordon's last minute conversion to electoral reform. Pick axe handles at the braziers anyone?

    @ Doug - Why did they ditch (okay delay) their referendum then? Surely if they are so sure of the veracity of their case now would be the time to push it through?

  8. Depressing aye - the SNP fail to inspire.

  9. I don't see much between the SNP, labour, tory or libdems.

    At least as CR says we have some choice here but the SNP seem to be picking up a lot of unionist habits.

    I see Niko's upset because Annabel voted with John S. So did the greens.

  10. Oh must tell you what someone said to me the other day.

    'This next government will be the one entering the first post-democratic era.'

    Don't think they were far wrong.

  11. Surely if they are so sure of the veracity of their case now would be the time to push it through?

    Whatever the timing of the bill the dividing line question is still there.

    The British Establishment, break it or embrace it?

    The referendum bill is coming in this Parliament and the best time to push through is when Brown calls the General election. The media then can't ignore the SNP in accordance with Murphy's wishes in an attempt to freeze the SNP out of all media coverage and it also means that independence takes centre stage in a General Election.

  12. Yes the SNP are basically the same as Labour these days.
    Love the EU, mass immigration, multiculturalism, man made global warming scam etc...
    As a lifelong SNP voter I'm now left with UKIP or the B&P. Not much choice.

  13. Mr Browns sudden "conversion" to AV was either intended to try and skew future elections in his Parties favour, or to show those who oppose him as "non-progressive". He only does self-interest.

    I prefer a modification of FPTP. First, make all the constituencies of roughly equal size by voter numbers. That way, many of the current inbalances are evened out.

    Then only allow a party-sponsored MP to represent the Party (by either voting in the chamber or taking a poltical post) if he or she has more than 50% of the available votes (not just those cast) in their constituency. 49.9% means that they are purely in post for the benefit of the electorate.

    It means that no voter need go unrepresented, but that the candidates have to actively appeal to the Public before they can start toeing the Party line.

    If you do have this transferrable vote thing, any second/third choice votes count less - 0.5 for a second choice, 0.333 for third.

    To make everybody happy (except the MPs), consider a "None of the Above" box too - the practical difference between our local MP and an empty seat is depressingly small.

  14. @ scunnert - Alex took a bit of a kicking at FMQs today - deservedly.

    @ subrosa - 'This next government will be the one entering the first post-democratic era.' - classic and upsettingly accurate I fear.

    @ DougtheDoug - You make a good point about breaking the system. My problem is with the political classes and politicians (anybody who wants to be - and all that), nationalism doesn't solve that.

    @ ex-SNP - thanks for your comment. The is no alternative for any thinking voter - the "representative" element has been usurped by Party Interests. Revolution anyone?

    @ Mick - I agree with the notion of a "None Of The Above" option - however I fear that the successful elected candidates will pay little heed to it.