Solving the World's problems with common sense and a flamethrower.

Wednesday, May 06, 2015

Think It Doesn't Matter? You're Wrong.

You're wrong.

If you think that there's no difference, if you think that "they're all the same", if you think that your vote doesn't matter - you're wrong.

This General Election has sadly been reduced by all parties to a cacophony of soundbites, gimmicks and platitudes, the issues and policies lost in a welter of hashtags, ad-hominem attacks, lies, and 'celebrity' endorsements. And in doing so the electorate have come to believe that they're all the same, that nothing will change.


Whether or not you agree with it, Ed Miliband has taken the Labour Party leftward, meaning that there's a wider ideological split between the two mainstream parties than there's been for 20 years. Throw in the rise of the SNP, the catastrophic decline of the Lib Dems and the increased weight of the minor parties, and suddenly you have everything from proto-Fascism in UKIP to comedy agrarian Communism in the Greeens, and all of them can actually have a meaningful impact on the outcome

There are issues out there, the issues matter to us all, and the methods of addressing those issues vary wildly across all the parties. There is a difference. They're not all the same.

Then, for added drama, throw in the closeness of the contest. With Labour facing wipeout in Scotland and the loss of the skew that has historically granted them, this is a closer race than we've had in years. In fact, it's neck-and-neck:

So your vote matters. Every seat will matter, from safe to marginal. Crawley turned on 37 votes in 2005. Your vote (postal vote fraud notwithstanding) may be the difference between the party you support winning or losing and, at a national level, the Government you wanted. Or not.

So your vote does matter. You can be the difference.

Finally, we have the Constitutional element. We are likely to see another Hung Parliament, but this time no major party has enough seats, on current polling, to hit the magic 323-seat target with just one other party. There's nothing stable out there:

So whoever has the most seats Friday morning has to negotiate a (three-way) Coalition, then has to pass a Queen's Speech through a tight Commons - and if they don't, the whole lot collapses and...well, and what? Nobody is quite sure. The Cabinet Manual and precedent don't really cover this possibility - yet it's a real possibility. Very real.

So it doesn't matter?

Tax. Economy. Immigration. Welfare. Massive differences in approach. Seats so close even the bookies won't call them. An Election so close the bookies can't call it, and a possible Constitutional crisis to top it all off.

Think it doesn't matter? You're wrong. This shit matters, and it matters not just on a national level but in your town, in your home and in your paycheque.

Your vote - everyone's vote - matters this time around. Red, Blue, Yellow, Purple, Green - every single vote in every single constituency* will matter. This is, in many ways, the most important and exciting General Election in a generation. It matters.

It matters. Please, whatever the colour of your rosette, get out there tomorrow and vote.

*except Bradford West, of course.

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