First of all, an apology for two blogs running on politics, I’ll now ease off a little but most of you know how strongly I feel.
Edward Morrow – an honest journalist – once said: “A nation of sheep will beget a government of wolves.”
In case you do not know who Mr Morrow is, and many of you won’t as he was a nineteen forties man, I lifted the following from Wikipedia…
Edward R. Murrow (born Egbert Roscoe Murrow; April 25, 1908 – April 27, 1965) was an American journalist and television and radio figure. He first came to prominence with a series of radio news broadcasts during World War II, which were followed by millions of listeners in the United States and Canada. Historians consider him among journalism’s greatest figures.
Alas, there is no such giant in “Fleet Street” as we can see by the daily news which does not tell us anything that is really happening behind the scenes, although many journalists are fully aware. Why? Because they value their pay cheques more than they value their integrity!
Are we a nation of sheep? I am not sure of the percentage of actual sheep but would guess that there are about 30% of voters who vote for Labour because their fathers voted Labour, and their fathers before them. The same figure probably accounts for the Conservative voters, and for the same reason. Possibly there are about 40% of floating voters. It wouldn’t be so bad if these people voted for the best person in their constituency likely to work for their constituents. (My own MP, Rudy Vis, seems to spend most of his time in parliament asking dozens of questions concerning juveniles in prison. Worthy, but not helping people in Finchley!) However, most floating voters either vote for the opposition to “punish” the present government, or act only for a particular “bee in their bonnet” currently at the top of their minds at the time.
Ergo, we seem to always have a government of wolves.
Our present “party” system definitely isn’t working. First of all, we need to elect MPs who should agree to ignore all three-line whips. How we accomplish this is beyond me, but whilst we have this system MPs have to vote for bills which go against their conscience. This should not be.
When you go to the polling booth, don’t look for your “Conservative”, “Labour”, “Liberal Democrat” or even “UKIP” candidate. Take more of an interest. Go and listen to their pre-election speeches, ask them what they intend doing for their local constituents. They have been briefed on various issues and will have their answers pat so, by asking them a more general question, such as: “What are you going to do to better your constituents?” you will bypass all their briefings and may hear what they really are, and care, about.
And don’t forget the independents. One person in Southern England stood for parliament because he was a doctor and didn’t like what was happening at his local hospital. He was elected. It can happen.
And care not for wasted votes, care not for letting in another party by voting for what you believe in. Because if you vote honestly, you have done your duty to your country, your constituency and your family. If you vote any other way, for any other reason, you have betrayed your country, you have betrayed your constituency and you have betrayed your family.
And what is more, you have betrayed yourself.