They're not voting because...
- I didn't vote - not because of any lack...
I didn't vote - not because of any lack of interest or concern but just disillusioned with the whole political process. In the past there was a very clear distinction between the parties and what they stood for - you had the left and you had the right - there did seem to be a real opposition. A real difference and a real direction to inspire you to get out and vote. There is no real Opposition today. Now they all want the 'middle' ground and its the same theme tune from all the main parties but with slight variations - not enough to distinguish one from the other. My disillusionment with today's politics also comes from the slick stage managed way the politicians communicate with the electorate. The increased media coverage I suppose influences this to a certain extent but although the media has made politics familiar it has also made it distant from me - I don't feel connected to the process at all today.
Finally, I think its wrong to think that non-voters are less interested in politics than voters - we non-voters are well-informed but feel less connected to the established political process. I want to be inspired to go out and vote for someone I really believe in - I want my vote to count for something and for someone because they deserved my vote. I don't want to vote just for the sake of voting - surely that is worse than not voting at all.written 6th May 2005
Delta replies: Whats are your trying to say? Most parties will be somewhat simmilar because as a civilised democracy we're all share certian values and views. Each party does offer somthing diffrent however. What do you propose we do to spice things up? Clone Hitler and put an exteremest party in the ballot?
If your of the view we shoudl use proportional representation as a fairer system, sitting on your arse isnt going to bring it, I'll simply let those who dont want it in year after year.
Equal Votes, if you value them, vote for them.written 6th May 2005
James Brown replies: Delta, you don't seem to be quite getting the hang of this.
I'm actually even more against PR than the current system, because it even further enshrines the bankrupt notion of a political parties. But thats by the by.
Please understand what the name of this site tries to make clear. The people who post here are telling you that they are not voting as a protest against a system that is thoroughly unfair, and which results in positions of incredible repsonsibility being given to people who are not competent to handle them.
'So vote for a change?' I hear you cry. My response, look at the system, it just doesn't work like that.written 6th May 2005
Chris McBride replies: Do we live in a civilised democracy? Well, I guess that one is up for grabs. Would you say that we were living in a similar society 25 years ago? 70 years ago? Look at your history and try and tell me that the parties had "common values" then.written 7th May 2005
Every year brings the parties closer and closer idealogically where we are in danger of a return to the days before the rise of the Labour movement - Essentially a musical chairs between business and the inherited wealthy (Wigs & Tory) where the majority of working people (no assets except a mortgaged house) are forced to pick whichever of the evils offer the most trinkets, but allow the powerful to take the rest of the spoils.
Whatever your opinion of the Lib Dems (I, for the record am not a huge fan) 3+ viable party politics can only be an improvement as it will encourage diversity and a spread away from the competition for the "centre ground".
dcd replies: We have PR in the UK in Northern Ireland, but then we used to have a Governorship in Hong Kong who decided everything without any voting, elections or anything like that.
There are many systems that purport to be democratic; Democracy is a strange word with actually no definitive, pinned-down, exact meaning. As long as there are votes and elections, however they are done, then we declare it democratic -- as though that were always a "good thing".
The USA's president prays in his Oval office to his pentecostal protestant Christian God, the dollar bill declares "In God We Trust".
Here, we have a monarch as head of state and church (just like the new Pope Benedict XVI).
Yet both the UK and the USA hate the idea of Islamic governments, stating that church and state should be separate!
For some people, the law of God SHOULD play a major part in government; it informs the morality of their legal system and general daily running of their country. Well, fair enough, they have a right to that view, don't they?
My goodness, the UK is like that... we have Anglican Bishops sitting in the upper house, don't we?
Israel is like that too.
Even some European countries have Christian Democrat parties, which -- as the name suggests -- blends Religion and Politics.
Perhaps Christianity CAN be blended with democracy, who knows? Perhaps it can't, if it overlooks other religions' views in a democratic sense.
Perhaps the UK and the USA feels that Islamic fundamentalists should not be in government because their religion is more stringent than our myriad denominations of Christianity... perhaps more stringent ot the point of being (God forbid) LESS DEMOCRATIC!
Is it possible that a country with an overwhelming majority of very religious people might want a government that is NOT DEMOCRATIC, a country where areas do not require representatives per se, having already in place a religious network/ organisation. That their national or general laws and views need NOT be voted upon, for how can you vote to be for or against the Word of God?
If you can allow your imagination to run wild and see that this might just be a possibility, then forcing such a people, such a country into being what-we-call democratic is just plain daft!
Throughout history religion and politics, because they have precisely the same earthy aims, are inextricably linked.
There was a recent fuss about Prince Charles's wedding being acceptable to the state as well as to the church. India was partitioned from Pakistan entirely on religious grounds, Scotland has terrible sectarianism and bigotry, Northern Ireland is catholic versus protestant (i.e. Christian against Christian), even the British monarchy's history is all about Catholic/Protestant tension -- look at the Jacobites, the House of Stuart, Mary Queen of Scots, Guy Fawkes (ad nauseum).
You have to understand that we are officially in a post-Christian transition, that's why the politics is so beige and uninteresting, and everyone is seeking the murky middle ground.
There may be a widening gap between rich and poor, but there is a bigger gap between what is classed as poor today compared with what was poor in the past; we're pretty affluent, stable, uninterested, apathetic.
With no bogeymen, such as Nazis or Commies, we have to seek out a war in Iraq just to shake the can a little, terrible though it may be to say so.
I'm sorry, but without the religious element, because Christianity has waned so much, we have no real sense of belief, purpose, -- no to-die-for deeply held cause.
It is actually quite like Orwell wrote, to keep people motivated a fake threat, fake war was invented. 1984 is still our future.written 7th May 2005