Four weeks of shouty, excited politicians, trying to persuade us that their party is 100% right about everything, and that the other party is 100% wrong about everything.
Four weeks of excited, interruptive broadcasters trying to persuade said politicians that they are all 100% wrong about everything (raising the question of why broadcasters should not take over the running of the country if they are so damn smart?)
Four weeks of voter delusion. Four weeks of fooling the electorate into thinking that they have the onerous task of choosing between CallMeDave(the Herod of our time) and PoorGord.
The fact is that the voters do not choose the Prime Minister. Under the crap FPTP system used in the UK and three of its ex-colonies, the voter does not directly choose the next Prime Minister, the voter does not directly choose the next Government, the voter only chooses the next MP for that constituency. The vote does not go beyond the constituency border. The dysfunctional FPTP means that in a roundabout, indirect and imperfect way, the way the vote swings affects the number of MPs, whose numbers in turn determine the colour of the next Government, but there is no direct connection between the vote and the PM.
FPTP means that all votes that are not cast for the winning candidate are wasted. Thrown away. Discounted. Pointless. Unvalued. Futile. Senseless. Ineffectual. Pointless. Fruitless. Cast in vain. Worthless. Hollow. Disapparated. Not even recycled.
Here, once again is my graph of a sample of 2005 general election results, showing that in safe seats, more voters do not bother. Turnout falls by 10% for every 12,000 increase in majority.
Amid all the punditry, all the synthetic "concern about lack of voter commitment", all the acres of newsprint, all the hour after tedious hour of election broadcasting, you would think that the highly-paid professionals would devote a blim of attention to this fact. You would think wrongly.
Theirs not to reason why, theirs but to spread the lie.
So, although the economy figures largely in this election, political reform, which must start with electoral reform, must rank as highly.
So how do we vote for electoral reform?
There are two kinds of voter: first, the conviction voter, who will always vote for the party of their choice. Second, the swing voter, who is open to persuasion.
If you are a swing voter, you need to ask three questions.
The first question is to ask, "Am I in Brighton Pavilion?"
If you are registered to vote in Brighton Pavilion, your choice is clear: Vote Green, for Caroline Lucas, and make history by putting the first Green in Parliament. In fact, if you are a committed
Lib Dem or Labour voter, you should look at what you are doing, because your commitment may let the Conservative in.
If not in Brighton Pavilion, the second question to ask is "Am I in a safe seat or not?"
If you are in a safe seat, and of sound mind, then your choice is clear: Vote Green. Because Green is the only realistic political ideology, and is set to become the dominant political theme of the 21st century. You will not get an MP, but if enough people do this and the Greens get say 10-15% in all safe seats, the idiot pundits may possibly sit up and take notice.
If you are not in a safe seat but in a marginal seat, then first I have to say, still vote Green, because this will cause the two parties in contention to green up their policies in order to get more of your vote next time. However, I recognise that many will given the rare opportunity, will wish to influence the outcome of the election.
In this case, it is necessary to look at who is in contention. If the LibDems are in contention, then clearly, you should back them, because they are in favour of electoral reform. And who are we to disbelieve them?
If it is a Lab-Con split, then vote Labour, because they are in favour of voting reform too. Such is Labour's lack of brain, they favour the AV system, which is almost as crap as FPTP, and in some situations even crapper, but it can be converted into AV+, which is proportional.
Above all, never, ever, vote Tory, because
- they oppose electoral reform
- they are infested with climate change deniers
- they will probably bring the recession back with their cuts
- they have not read the Spirit Level, or if they have, they disagree with it.
- they are the party of Big Business and Big Political Donations