When I go into the polling station and get my pencil out, I will not be making an educated decision. I will be relying on rumours, gossip, propaganda that stuck, some reading, gut instinct, and tradition.
In a tricky knockout competition, like a contestant flooded Blind Date, I have managed to knock out some of the lurid beasts vying for my cross, but there are still a few who have managed to disguise their ghastliness with such vim that they have clung on to the final round. It is like a Desert Island Discs where you can only choose a selection of records you have never heard, though you are told at least 7 out of the possible 13 have been used as torture devices in Guantanamo Bay.
Can you pick the ones that will do you the least psychological damage?
From Twitter to the Telegraph, via Question Time and talk radio, we are bombarded by so much jetsam and fripperies disguised as gravitas and ethics, that it is hard to keep your head, and near impossible to attain rationality. Most of bickering, backbiting, “it’s unfair they do it too”, would be best suited to doors of public lavatories and occasionally carved into an elm tree, with a pen knife that has just aided a blood oath.
Elections were so much simpler when the parties maintained their sense of being, “quite a bit different to that other shower of bastards”. The gloopiness of an amorphous mass of political types, the death of a mainstream left wing, replaced by talcum scented liberalism that looks flirtatiously up at the city types and hedge fund jugglers, leaves us open to some medicine man, back of the wagon snake oil chicanery.
A few years ago, even if you didn’t vote Lib Dem, you liked the fact there was this party that seemed different, possibly kind, well-meaning amateurs who could help out in a scrape. Since the coalition government, this useful illusion seems dead. XXXXXXXX And so, the new alternatives arrive and feast on the carcass, waving around notions of being for “the people”, demonstrating this by saying how ghastly all “the people” are that are not from around here. While duplicitous and scandalous financial dealings brought things crashing down, it is still the foreign plumbers who take most of the blame. The venality of the many-mansioned was as nothing to the undercutting on washer replacements.
We drown in political “information” from the mass media at these times, but so little of it is really useful in making a decision, so little of it is real evidence. Just as politicians seem to be middle class milksops and chancers (damn, I have all the qualifications then), the media doesn’t really offer much in terms of genuine alternative thinkers and campaigners. (I’ll try not to err too far of course here, but there is a middle class dominance, the seemingly genteel, the rosy cheeked fleet street lushes, occasionally interrupted by Owen Jones. I am part of that middle class, I see my own disease).
We have the occasional TV debates, where the politicians tub thump their differences, and then it’s all back to the green room for Prosecco and unctuousness. How have we ended up with so many parties on the right, and so little on the left. Where did it go wrong?
Six out of the Nine parties standing in my are right wing, with the Conservatives representing the most liberal option. My remaining choices, should I decide not to embrace my middle age swing to the right (I am 45, i am allowed to now), are the Greens, Lib Dem and Labour. Why did the left die? We whine about the exorbitant bills from the private companies that reap profits from the utilities that are necessary to survive in a civilisation (and gain subsidies too), we look at a renationalised rail line making a profit, but accept the necessity of privatisation (again, private profit, public subsidy), and even our TV channels that are muddied by rumour of left leaning fail dismally to present decent coverage of the disemboweling of the NHS, the selling off of the post office, and so it goes on.
Orwell is mauled by the right and left, and with good reason, he was prescient and quotable, and it seems that we are overly successful in maintaining “an unending series of victories over your own memory.” We are furious over choco rations on Tuesday, but by thursday we fear that choco rations are not safe if anyone other than the incompetents and greedy we know should take charge. It is not even very nice choco, isn’t it worth the risk? (if I was in London, I would vote NHA Party as i think sending a shot across the bow, or right into the masthead, is what is needed in terms of rousing people into a fury about the dismantling of the NHS. Here is some information on why this has anything to do with EU)
This was written from an unconscious part of my brain. I typed and typed, then stopped. this is just a chaos of thoughts again.
We are an Orwellian future twinned with a Huxleyian town, just as we get angry, we remember that Marks and Spencer have a new range of dips and flatbreads (the feelies of our digestion) Imagining anything beyond roughly the way it’s always gone, the foreigners are to blame, big business must be adored as it crushes you, because no one else wears a velvet glove over iron with such authority, even if the glove is getting tatty and the knuckles are showing, is too dangerous to contemplate. Have another Quality Street, things could be worse.
All that writing, and still I don’t know where to make my pencil mark tomorrow, but I know I must make them somewhere, the opportunists and the bigots are circling, and thus, I must choose the least worse and hope.
I am touring forever – off to Swindon, Hull, Hay on Wye, Reading, Worcester, York, Glasgow, Newcastle and on and on . dates HERE